A opinionated response on the recently leaked 10497 Galaxy Explorer 90th anniversary set

Hello, TTV boards,

For anyone who has been keeping up with the system leaks recently they are probably aware of the recently leaked 10497 Galaxy Explorer set from Promobricks that was circulating earlier this week and the leaked Forestmen’s Hideout GWP. These people are probably also aware of the 90th anniversary Lion King’s Castle leak which has received some updated info as well, also provided by Promobricks. Now you may think everything is cool, nice and dandy which is fine but it’s when you first look into it that things feel a bit shady…

Now… now… I know LEGO is a company and can do whatever they want to do and I shouldn’t really be so conflicted about this as I am but I do not like this development.

Let’s do a little history class shall we: In early 2021 LEGO held 2 polls in succession meant to determine what theme would be revived for A 90th anniversary set. To many people’s surprise BIONICLE technically took the first spot in the voting of the first poll, however due to a massive complaint from the castle fans, summarized to its not fair that BIONICLE wasn’t split into subthemes while castle, pirates and space were to which TLG the people who have final say agreed and tallied all the castle subthemes votes into one making it the winning theme for the first poll. Despite BIONICLE technically not having any subthemes as many fans would probably attest as it seems like a given to categorize BIONICLE into year of release instead as all sets are more or less connected to each other. Which fine it’s nitpicking TLG’s decision, we will get back to this later. Anyhow this left us with a total of 4 themes to vote for during the second vote, during which BIONICLE was at a severe disadvantage while we never got the public results for the second poll it is likely that many system fans voted for anything but BIONICLE meaning the support from system fans during the first vote may have disappeared and left BIONICLE on 4th place in that second poll. Now LEGO also established during the first poll that they’d have veto power over what theme would recieve a set to be produce for the 90th anniversary set and let’s just say considering the above the chance they’d pick BIONICLE was slim.

A few months later in June of 2021, the Bricklink designer programs first round of crowdfunding started, among these previously rejected IDEAS sets was The Legend of BIONICLE project and the Castle in the Forest project. Out of which the Castle set prevailed selling out almost instantly and causing such an uproar LEGO had to extend the crowdfunding goal to 10000 sets from 5000. Now, many people think the BIONICLE set tanked and while yes it didn’t reach 5000 supporters within the time frame it did far from poorly according to some sources it managed to reach above 3000 people which is about 60% of the original stretch mark, which even most projects below the BIONICLE set failed to reach. Which means it wasn’t a total failure but if this first round had any impact on the actual choice of theme for the 90th anniversary set is unknown but it’s highly likely that the success of the Castle set swayed TLG’s choice towards Castle. Which is by all accounts a completely viable business strategy, this hypothesis would later be reaffirmed by the first leaks of the Lion King’s Castle 90th anniversary set from Promobricks. So far I was totally cool with LEGO doing a Castle set for the 90th, from what I could tell at the time it won fair and square….

I was even going to settle for the classic Tahu that was released in the 90 years of play Classic set as that’s a very nice thing for them to do but now however I’m not so sure anymore. Earlier this week Promobricks leaked a second 90th anniversary set that being a remaster of the set 497 Galaxy Explorer from 1979. This new leak for sure rubbed me the wrong way. Because it was essentially LEGO saying we know we promised to only make one set of the winning themes but eh we lied and also yeah we are not doing all of the top 4 sets.

Now one may say think about the pirates fans they didn’t get anything either to which I say fair but didn’t they already get a commemorative set, it would be awesome if a set for both themes were leaked but if neither gets leaked which seems to be the case. I dunno it makes me as a BIONICLE fan feel betrayed and cheated not only from what seemed originally to be a fair end result for a pretty hectic part of 2021 for a lot of the LEGO community. Not only does the whole thing in retrospect not seem like it was fair to begin with but that it somehow got actively rigged either to make Castle win or to go against BIONICLE.

I guess however you turn it, it just goes to show that TLG does care about their fans happiness as long as they don’t need to do more than the bare minimum for the BIONICLE fans. I don’t know if we will get anymore leaks of potential 90th anniversary sets before LEGO CON 2022 or their expected release in August 2022. However it’s highly likely that they will announce the leaked 90th anniversary sets during LEGO CON 2022 but right now I’m in this weird state of I just want to be done with it and I definitely feel stringed along or decieved by TLG.

However I’ll end this by saying that despite my depressive overanalysis of the situation I can see the logistical fallacies in my arguments too. Like TLG can’t do everything and doing a BIONICLE set the way LEGO would have wanted to do it may just be too expensive. I can’t personally say that I agree with how LEGO has handled the situation though, it feels like they almost listened but also like they screwed a part of their fans at the same time. I dunno how I exactly feel about this, part of me is really tired of this 80s nostalgia pandering that happens whenever they revisit an old theme for new sets and another part of me is happy that classic sets are reimagined like this but another part feels like they should have gone all out for the 90th and maybe they did we don’t know exactly yet. However I don’t want to be too optimistic, I’m talking about a company that has become more and more corporate during the last decade, it’s very likely we won’t be getting any more sets for the 90th(Except that GWP which well makes sense, that’s all I have to say about that).

Anyhow I’m gonna banish myself to the SHADOW REALM and blast “Can you feel the sunshine” on full volume. So bye until my next return.



Well, can you really blame Lego for wanting to put out a Castle set? The Lego Castle fans have been pining for a return for ages, and even some of the Bionicle fans wouldn’t mind a Castle return, either.

But I agree, it is kinda weird that they went back on their promise and made more than one of the top 4 winners into a set. They said there’d only be one, but then they threw in a Galaxy Explorer at the last minute. What next, is there gonna be a $20 Tahu figure, too? Though I’d happily buy that…


i didn’t know there were leaks


present company included.

I don’t mind so much on this, space fans gonna space.


Gotta go to space


Definitely a lot of good points in here. You can’t deny there is some negativity towards bionicle in the LEGO company. Even with the most optimistic view on it all there are just some things that are strange.Especially now that they are making more then one set. Why not make all four? Oh well Lego won’t be getting my money.


I didn’t know about this, thanks for the write up. I sure hope we won’t find ourselves in the situation where Lego makes a set for all of the finalist themes except for Bionicle…


I hope we get an interesting cmf series for the 90th anniversary that includes a variety of themes. I don’t have the money or space to buy a huge spaceship or castle.


It’s a leak, who knows if the other top voted themes will be sets as well. But if not, yes it would be upsetting that Lego cherry-picked another safe option.

I’m still of the opinion that it should have been a Moc contest of sorts where people were encouraged to make ideas that are a hybrid of themes that were special to them or a slice of history. Imagine that old wooden duck but with a ninjago looking mech body or other hybrids, old and new all mashed up, celebrating all 90 years of play and the creative spirit of the Lego community…idk ignore this ramble part of mah post :stuck_out_tongue:

They reference it fairly often and they have no obligation to do that, I personally don’t see negativity, just preference in which themes and fandoms TLG gives larger attention.

^ This
Would be awesome, I’d love a service station attendant inspired by the town plan sets, Fabuland (of course), a wood carver, technic arctic or competition inspired minifigure, The Jack Stone (for the memez), Bionicle (duh), a Rock Raider, Ice Babe, Clutch Powers, the protags from that 1980s Idea Book, Zac the Lego maniac?? So many ideas!


This statement seems a bit unfair. I didn’t see anyone complaining against Bionicle, so much as they were complaining for Castle. It’s a minor nitpick, but it changes the perception of Bionicle’s reputation with Lego, which, given the topic of this post, is an extremely important thing to get right.

Ultimately, I do find it interesting that the “rules” of the poll were bent like this (assuming that the rumours are true), and I’ll be curious to see if they’re bent any further in the coming months.


I’d like a lion tamer in gold so we get a gold whip.


Are you wanting the figures to all be gold like the HP ones?
Yeah I suppose a gold whip would be handy for ornamental architecture, steampunk or in a circuit board perhaps.

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the do care. Incredibly much.

But a small handful of children and young adults yelling at the company and each other over a ten-year dead theme doesn’t exactly possess any particular majority. LEGO has been absolutely nothing but fair and logical as both a business and a toy company.


And yet they still throw in these little winks and nods at the older fans. That’s something to be appreciated, right?


The easter eggs are always a nice touch, however its important to distinguish between the designers working at LEGO and the company itself. The people who decided to hold a poll for an anniversary set and decide the rules for that event isn’t the same people who designs the sets or puts in easter eggs in sets. If a designer wants to do a set they need permission from higher ups to do so but if a designer wants to sneak in a hidden reference I believe they have way more leeway in that regard.

However my point was never that LEGO doesn’t care but that I’m not okay with LEGO potentialy going back bending their own rules by making more than one anniversary set linked to the poll from last year. While I acknowledge that LEGO being the company who made the poll can do what they want with its rules, it just leaves a poor taste in my mouth. Just thought I cleared that up. As some people seemed to have missed that…

I’m split on this actually as the Bionicle not being split into subthemes was the main argument for why LEGO should have merged the castle subthemes. However at the same time as I said in the original post it was ultimately LEGO’s decision to merge the subthemes so I can’t really complain.

As for the CMF talks I hope that happens:

I don’t think we will get a full cmf series of gold minifigs though but as long as its classic figs reimagined sign me up.

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No, only the lion tamer should be gold. The rest should be normal colors.


Okay I get it now, me dumb


Oh, I don’t need the lion tamer anymore. The large scale BD-1 droid includes them as wires. Never mind!!


To leave an update to this the GWP is with out a doubt happining, dunno if I can share leaked photos on this site. The LAN(LEGO Ambassador Network) has become stricter with leaked photos as of last year. However pictures exists out there just google “40567 Foresr Hideout”. Gonna be available in June btw

There is no known update on the 10497 Galaxy Explorer, so I’m hopefully optimistic that was a ruse but the GWP is true so there is still a possibility for this.

Well the set is revealed now, so it was not a hoax.
Now I feel cheated.