If you're a fan of Lego, or of Super Mario (or both, as is entirely possible given both are huge), you'll probably be pleased to know you'll soon be able to buy Super Mario Lego sets. Pre-orders have just opened up, with the sets due to release on August 1.
Lego previously teased a Super Mario set, but it turns out there will in fact be many sets. This initial set we saw is known as the 'Starter Kit (opens in new tab)', and will be priced at $59.99 / £49.99 (roughly AU$100), and if you pre-order that you get a 'Monty Mole and Super Mushroom Expansion Set' for free.
On top of those kits, Lego also announced the Piranha Plant Power Slide and Bowser's Castle Boss Battle expansions, for roughly half and double the price of the starter kit respectively, although we only know UK prices for them (£24.99 and £89.99). It's not clear when pre-orders for these will start.
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What's special about Super Mario Lego?
So what is this Super Mario Lego, and why does it have 'Expansion Sets' and a 'Starter Kit' instead of being just a collection of sets? Well it seems Super Mario Lego is actually quite a technologically-focused collection.
You can play Super Mario Lego like a game, collecting virtual coins (in conjunction with an app), and the Mario figure has a built-in screen which gives reactions and expressions. Therefore the Expansion Sets just expand the 'levels' you create.
To fit the feel of Super Mario games, you don't build the Lego kits upwards but outwards, creating your own levels with the bricks provided, so these sets will likely be perfect for your kids if you want them to like the same games as you, but also stop staring at screens so much.
Lego tried something similar with Lego Hidden Side which let people create kits, then play games with them using smartphones and AR, again using technology to extend the Lego experience far beyond building the sets. Suffice to say TechRadar is very pleased to see Lego embrace tech more, and can't wait to test Super Mario Lego out.
You can pre-order the Lego Super Mario starter kit by clicking here (opens in new tab). The official Lego Super Mario release date is August 1, and we can expect to see more details about the two expansion sets, and possibly more, before then.