I was upfront and honest about the few reasons why I wouldn’t support particular LEGO CUUSOO projects, as one of the few upfront and honest AFOLs around (!), and sadly there’s been next to no response to the challenge. But I figured, since I’ve dispensed with the “negatives”, it’s time for some “positives”.
Here are some particular things I look for when proposed with supporting a project on LEGO CUUSOO – and more to the point, why I’ve chosen to highlight these currently underrated LEGO CUUSOO projects, as opposed to skimming off the top of the most supported list.
1 – I actually like it.
Here’s my question to you guys: how many projects have you supported on CUUSOO that you’ve actually wanted to see made into an official set? And in comparison, how many have you supported because of the number of people already supporting it?
I’m not going to judge anyone who does the latter – at least, not today – but from my perspective there’s no sense in supporting a project if I don’t actually want to see it reach its goal of being made official. To me it’s like making up answers in a market research survey: yes you’ll get the warm fuzzy feeling of “contributing” and maybe earning some spare change, but in the long run there’s no telling what the end result will be.
There are also themes I’m not particularly keen on, as well as themes I’m more likely to be enthusiastic about. As a Town/City person, with an interest in Architecture and [LEGO] Space, I’m more biased toward those themes, and usually much less enthusiastic about Castle, Pirates and licensed themes (including Star Wars).
2 – I would actually buy it (in its current form).
There are no doubt a whole bunch of apologists for certain popular projects; some who’ll hide behind the presentations as the key to their successes, if it’s not about being popular. Therein lies the thing: take away any accompanying text, the supporter count, the number of views etc. and especially the comments section, and what’s left? I would hope it’s something I would like to see made into an official set, and would be able to buy, assuming that it’s going to be made available as it’s shown.
Although, as a MOCer, I usually focus on parts and minifigures, I would buy a set if it featured a particularly cool model. 4435 (Car and Caravan) is an example of one I haven’t yet taken apart.
3 – I could buy it at a reasonably good price.
Before anyone claims I’m contradicting myself, as I’d made a slightly related point about pricing in the last post: there are two points to consider about price.
The first would be in relation to how many of a set I’d buy. In a lot of cases I’d purchase multiples – though not necessarily at the same time – in which case I’d be looking for value for money. The most expensive set I’ve purchased to date was the 10224 Town Hall – and that was with £90 of VIP points.
The second would indeed be whether it’s worth buying the set for the parts it contains. In most cases it is: especially for new themes and sets, the part out values on BrickLink can be ridiculously high… sometimes even more expensive than on LEGO Shop@Home.
Both of these factors can be ascertained by honestly answering LEGO CUUSOO’s question: how much would you pay for the model?
4 – What would I do with it?
Personally I’d be much more likely to support a project if I could do something with it as is: perhaps taking pictures of it in different scenarios, or starting a collection of something. In the case of vehicular models, swooshability is a big bonus.
Most of the time I wouldn’t support a project just for the sake of getting parts in a certain colour, but inventive use of those parts is a big bonus.
Of these reasons, ultimately the most important is whether or not I’d buy the resulting set if it got accepted – which would mean I’d have to think it’s a good idea – because I see that as being the point of the whole thing.