Mega Bloks Assassin’s Creed 94302: Da Vinci’s Flying Machine Review
The flying machine from Mega Bloks delivers in every department. Not only is it a fun set to build, it's genuinely one of the best Assassin's Creed collectibles available, period. It has articulated wings!
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I sit at the workbench, piecing together one of my most anticipated collectibles of Fall. Accompanying me is the melody of “Flight over Venice I” from Jesper Kyd’s Assassin’s Creed II soundtrack, fitting for this build.
The stage is ready. Everything is in favor of this set being a complete success.
Long story short, it delivers in every department. Not only is it a fun set to build, it’s genuinely one of the best Assassin’s Creed collectibles available, period.
The set contains a comfortable 95 pieces, including a fantastic figure, and accessories. For $11.99, this is extremely reasonable. Without a doubt you’re getting your money’s worth.
I very much appreciate what Mega Brands is doing here. Typically, main characters are offered in larger sets to rile up a bigger purchase; this clearly isn’t the case here, just as it isn’t with their other small set, the Cannon Strike, featuring Unity’s French protagonist Arno. As quoted from their blog:
“A pair of small sets give us two of the most in-demand protagonists of the games in affordable form.”
That’s an attitude that benefits both the consumer and the company.
I’d also like to point that these sets are made in Canada; I like that. Props to Mega Brands for keeping manufacturing close to home.
First and foremost, the micro figure. I know these are a big selling point, and I will happily confirm that they deliver. Interestingly enough, Mega Bloks changed some things on these from their very successful (and borderline perfect) Call of Duty figures. It’s also worth noting that these are in scale with the Halo micro figures, so they are marginally, almost unnoticeably, smaller than Call of Duty figures.
To begin, Ezio comes includes parts for two display options, a hood to recreate the iconic look, and the truly thoughtful addition of a hairpiece. Both parts are rendered exceptionally, with the hairpiece even featuring a ponytail. The hood catches light just perfect to imitate a peaked hood shadow that’s ubiquitous with the game’s imagery.
It may be hard to tell, but Ezio’s portrait is in fact unique compared to the other figures in the line; it even features the iconic scar on his lip. It’s faint and hard to photograph, but undoubtedly there; A+ for detail. He also has ears, something often omitted in building set figures. In place of paint applications for eyes, there are two holes that extend directly through the portrait. Peculiar, however it’s not all bad. In fact, it’s pretty good – no lazy eyes and a set of perfect pupils each time. For a scale this small, I find that perfectly acceptable, especially after seeing some wonky eyes on Halo and COD micro figures. It would not be that difficult to paint some white in for the sclera of the eye, if one would desire to. As it stands though, I think this is the cleanest, simplest option. It’s a risk that arguably paid off.
The rest of the figure is impressive for its size. Coming in at a total of 14 points of articulation, this little figure can really get into some great poses that are not only dynamic, but also fluid and realistic. The image on the back of the box picturing Ezio dropping from the flying machine is completely feasible; McFarlane can’t say the same for his figures. The back features a peg hole for dynamic display.
To compliment the range of motion, the portions of Ezio’s tabard are made of a soft plastic so that they do not inhibit posing. In addition, his sash is made of a stretchy red material with two hidden loops on each side of the mold; sword can be sheathed in both. Nice touch!
Otherwise, the sculpt is small, yet detailed. Ezio’s wrists feature buckles on his gauntlets and there is sculpt throughout the boots and tunic. For the scale it is executed superbly.
The other half of this deal is the vehicle which defined some of the most exciting sequences of Assassin’s Creed II, Leonardo Da Vinci’s flying machine. Not only is the build faithful to the game’s rendering, but it also imitates the historical interpretations of Da Vinci’s designs, so props to both the designers and the developers at Ubisoft! It really represents the source materials well.
The build took me about 20 minutes, however I took pictures and documented as I went for this review, so I suspect this will be shorter for regular construction aficionados.
Yes, second and third beams from the top are incorrect on one side; I photographed it too early!
I was very impressed by how unique the construction was. Primarily based on a wooden skeletal structure, this design accurately replicates that image with plastic and real fabric, and it does it well. It’s loaded with unique connector plugs, bars, and more. This is definitely a set for custom builders looking for parts. I was particularly intrigued by the triple c clamp pieces, double-sided 2×2 tile, and the various beams.
A building set is only as good as its pieces, and I’m pleased to say Mega Brands has upgraded their quality noticeably. The construction connectivity is premium. Bricks that do not lock together are a thing of the past; everything is tight, solid, and well thought out, placing it on par with their biggest competitor. Much like the quality of construction, the pieces have also improved. They seem slightly less dense than Lego, but certainly still feel very durable and now feature that “solid building brick” feeling that once eluded the company. I have no qualms here. I did notice some white stress marks in the “piping” plastic after placing the beams inside, however. At least I know it won’t slide apart.
The wings are entirely articulated, featuring hinges and swivels throughout, so it can maneuver gracefully across the skies of Italy. The fabric bends and conforms along these joints and truly seals the deal in terms of realism.
To top it off, the set has a small display base molded in Megabloks unique marbled patterns. Attached is a flight stand that holds the machine in place, with or without a figure onboard. It doesn’t actually clip above the tail (but it does clip to the handlebar). I just balanced it in place for photography’s sake.
As both a fan of the series and construction sets, I am beyond pleased with the outcome. Not only has it fulfilled the expectations of Assassin’s Creed building sets, it has exceeded them. It’s very evident the Mega Brands are invested in their collector lines, and Assassin’s Creed is no exception. I look forward to the future of this series and hope that it can expand to the lengths their other collector lines have.
These Mega Bloks Assassin’s Creed sets are fantastic for fans and builders alike. I could not recommend it more. As Ezio would say, molto bene!
If you are interested in buying this set, you can currently get pretty good deals on eBay.
And for the loyal readers, here’s a sneak peek at the next review! See you there!