In distant 1995, as counter to Space series there was a town sub-theme, it called Launch Command
. As it could be easily guessed, it was about launching minifigure to space. One small step for a minifigure, one giant leap for LEGO. That time I liked fully space series more, despite that I had a Chinese version on this set. But let's get back to the sub-theme. This theme has been rebooted pretty often. In 1999 terrible Space Port
, in 2011 again Space Port
, but now in newly appeared City. And pretty recently, in 2015, we got Space
. This one still appear on the shelves.
Hero of our todays review is smallest set from Launch Command series - 6516
This set is one from "impulse" line, small sets that cost around 3 dollars, and had been showing the spirit of the chosen theme. They were too small, too simple, so LEGO has stopped their production. Now the similar models appear as polybags. Polybags often not available for sell, only as bonus with purchase. These bonus aren't available in all countries worldwide, so their price often is much bigger than it should.
Different reboots of this sets were always: twins 1180
, more funny 6463
, promo 30315
and subset of starter set 60077
, all could be counted towards reboots number. If we will count all similar small cars, buggies, rovers, etc, we will list them till the second coming. Because idea of small, one person, mobile unit, with 4 wheels, is one of the most like LEGO Designers idea, when they get small number of pieces limitation.
I got this set almost without a box, it looked like this:
Instruction, box back, bag with pieces, and separate bag for minifigure. So if someone want images of the box, here is some eBay founds.
On the front side we see set image. It is classical move, where is surprise? In the corner we see series name (so it is US box, because back then only them got theme names on it), also we see big mark "LEGO System", back then theme division was pretty straightforward ^_^.
Backside shows us alternate models list, good bonus that has been moved to Neverland (more precisely to Creator
On the side we can see some play scene. Box design hasn't changed a lot.
My box back is pretty damaged, so that third alternate model is unreadable.
As generally, the main part of review — is minifigure. Our brave spaceman always in touch with command centre. This face firstly appeared in this theme, and have lasted for around 6 years. Torso is unique for this theme. It has some unknown device printed on it, also there is a strange display on a stomach. It is very unusable on that place. Theme stripe is located on the left side of torso.
Everything from the back, except head is white. Some solvent in the front, replace head, and you will get fully white minifigure. Face of course one sided.
For this theme spacemen they have chosen to use classic race helmet. In white colour. It would be more pleasant for me to get a helmet from Classic Space, but then there won't be any visor on it.
Visor here is pretty awesome, it reflects everything, and is chrome gold. The only disadvantage that it decays after time. This is sad, because new sets doesn't release that visors, so , it can't be easily replaced.
Visor has enough degree of freedom, so that we can see face of our anonymous space explorer.
At the back we see ordinary space air tanks, they appeared back in 1978, and still can be found .( There is a bit of lie here, they appear in "why don't they sell it here" 5002812
and in 15th series of collectable minifigures. They stopped mass production of these air tanks in 2010, for more specific ones.)
Anyway this is a minifigure straight from the childhood.
I can indulge in nostalgia for a long time, but this minifigure not full set. Another part of this set is Moon Walker. Don't know why they call it Moon Walker (Lunokhod in Russia), for me it is Moon Rover. Nasa Moon Rover looked like this:
Our model a bit smaller, has lost second seat, but they definitely were inspired by it.
Wheels are pretty small, this is a problem with old sets wheels. (now we have another problem, big wheels everywhere.) At the back there is an antenna/radar, and headlight at the head :)
If we look from above, we will see that on one side of the rover (let's call it so), there is a control panel, not comfortable for a driver, may be they should have placed it on the front, before the driver. On the other side, there is a holder for strange device, i think it is some sort of sensor.
Headlight can rotate freely, so it can light up driver face, or light the sky, to call the Batman.
As you can notice, car has very low clearance, and it should "walk" only on smooth surfaces:
Let's try to repeat the game scene from the box. Our brave astronaut tries to find a source of distant unknown signal.
Source is found, forward to the adventures!
Источник определен, вперед к приключениям!
There isn't any seat part, but despite it everything looks fine.
Minifigure hands can't reach the driving wheel. Also there is a gap between headlight and driving wheel.
Unearthly light is reflecting on the helmet. I think we can stop with rover and continue our review.
Old set traditionally got alternate models, generally they were a sketches, ideas, based only on parts from this set. As counterpart to new alternative models that are mostly combiners.Buy them all.
First alternate model: Air tanks refuel station. Also may be it is goods trolley, but i think first idea is closer to reality.
Alternate models had no instruction back then, so different moments can be done differently, and one model can look different, and this is very good, because it is a spirit of LEGO.
It is definitely not Moon for this alternate model. Cosmonaut goes without helmet, while air tanks are refuelled. So I think everything occurs on earth. And this is NASA training programme.
Driving wheel parts here looks like valve.
Air tanks doesn't fit tightly, but overall construction is pretty steady, and nothing falls.
Most of this models are pretty steady and won't fall apart in children's hands.
Second model is speed buggy/rover. Body is inclined forward, some sort of spoiler in the back.
Also we see something like radar/rotating antenna, but because of air-tanks, it can't rotate.
Interesting transformation of base model "seat", now it has become hood of this speedy kart. Don't know why, but these small wheel give me strong association with karts. But if you put minifigure near it, you will see that they are pretty big. This is our beloved minifigure disproportion.
Third model doesn't use wheels, and it is some sort of surveillance station. May be it look for weather params, or may be it has laboratory in it, for moon exploration. You choose.
Station can be easily inclined.
I would say it can be wrapped up, so it takes less space in stowed condition.
Now our hero can attach wheels to it, and transport it to the desired place, or it can be attached as trailer to rover, good idea for the guys with couple such sets.
So the review has come to end. We have dived into the world of old LEGO, this set is more than 20 years old. And we can see that base elements and ideas are the same as now. Cute little sets, that have the spirit of old theme.
I like idea of "impulse" sets: small cheap lego sets for impulse buying. You could make an army from 6004
, touch any theme. But with release of collectable minifigures LEGO has removed competitive sets. No doubt, collectable minifigures are awesome, but sometimes you need a small set, not a figure. I wish good luck to everyone. Thanks for reading.