When I was much younger, I was fascinated with the world of He-Man and the Master of the Universe. Not only did the titular hero have my name when in his normal form, but the toy range also had some awesome playsets. One Christmas some distance family members came over from the US, where they bought me some He-Man goodies not yet available in the UK. One of those toys was a huge spider, called Spydor which was ridden by Skeletor. It was huge and after building the set I’m about to review, I was instantly reminded of playing with this imposing toy. The world of Monkie Kid is a far cry from Eternia, but it’s filled with a cast of equally colourful characters, inspired by the legendary Chinese fable, Journey to the West. The second wave of LEGO® Monkie Kid sets introduced a new foe for MK to take on, in the form of the Spider Queen. Her Arachnoid Base is a spectacular looking set, but is it worth adding to your collection? Let’s find out.
Children can create unlimited exciting adventures with this awesome LEGO® Monkie Kid™ mech toy: Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base (80022). The posable mech has lever-operated attack pincers and opens to reveal a minifigure prison and the Spider Queen’s lab for building robotic spiders. A hot gift toy for trend-setting kids, this unique playset features 6 minifigures, including Monkey King and Monkie Kid with The Golden Staff, which converts into a flyer for battle action.
- Set Name: Spider Queen’s Arachnoid Base
- Set Number: 80022
- Pieces: 1170
- RRP: £89.99/$99.99/99.99€
- Measurements: Measures over 10 in. (25 cm) high, 13.5 in. (34 cm) long and 17.5 in. (44 cm) wide
- Minifigures: Spider Queen, Syntax, Monkie Kid, Pigsy, Monkey King and civilian Jai.
- Availability: LEGO.com, & LEGO Stores exclusive from March 1st
The Monkie Kid sets have a unique visual style and that’s very much evident with the various villainous builds found across the theme. After taking on the Iron Bull King with the first wave of sets, the next line-up Monkie Kid releases introduced the Spider Queen and her arachnoid army. So it’s no surprise that the Queen’s base of operations is styled after a massive spider.
But before you crack on with building the Spider-shaped HQ, you build a little hero vehicle. This is a flying craft for Monkie Kid to use and is styled after the magic staff used by the Monkey King. In fact, it uses the same elements found in the Monkey King mech, which is a cool touch. The way the wings face is a little odd and almost makes them feel like they are on the wrong way round. But the main focus of the set is the spider-like base, from which the Spider Queen can do here bidding. Here mechanised base looks just like a spider, complete with eight legs, beady eyes and dripping venom.
As you’d expect from something dubbed arachnoid, the base is basically a huge spider mech. The body of the spider is a small platform, where you’ll find a banner flag, dead centre. This is far more than a display of the Spider Army’s banner of arms, it’s actually a lever that can be used to move the two front legs. Wiggling it around causes these legs to move.
Most of the other legs are fixed in place, apart from the middle one on either side of the central platform. These can be angled at various heights thanks to a couple of click joints. Despite featuring eight legs and a rather large abdomen, the front of the build is stabilised thanks to a trio of Technic beam-columns. Not only do they help keep the build stable, but they also help when pushing it around, as each column is topped with large rounded elements.
The legs may look rather complex but they are fairly simple to construct and even easier to connect, with most of them simply being fitted to the rest of the set with a single Technic cross-axis beam. They are jazzed up with a nice mixture of coloured elements, stickered pieces and green tubing and transparent rods.
Just above the platform where you’ll find the lever, is a raised section. Here you’ll find a bone-filled treasure chest in an unusual lavender colour. Above this is an altar-like platform, upon which the Spider Queen can display her prized catch, the imprisoned Monkey King. Behind this section is another smaller platform, where the Spider Queen’s henchman, Syntax, can do a little research on the Monkey King and keep tabs on the base’s operational readouts.
But the bulk of the build is focused on the large ball-like mass on the back of the Arachnoid’s rear section. As well as acting as the abdomen of the mechanical creature, it also opens out to reveal the inner workings of the base. Here you’ll find a prison chamber and a flip-down panel that acts as a perch for the Spider Mech to sit. These appear in a couple of sets and despite only having 6 legs, looks very spider-like. It’s a fairly simple collection of parts but the use of L clip hinges adds to the overall look of the robotic creature as well as giving it a little extra stability. It also features a transparent neon green canister, which uses a Minifigure head element. There are more of these to be found clipped inside the door panels of the opening section.
The set features seven Minifigures including Monkie Kid, Pigsy, Monkey King, Spider Queen, Syntax and a random civilian. MK is one of the most prevalent characters in the Monkie Kid sets and has a similar appearance across them. For this latest wave of sets, he’s got a slightly different look. This is mainly focused on an updated torso print, which now features a larger monkey emblem on the front of his jacket, there’s also a symbol on the back. He also swaps out the headphone element from around his neck for a folded down hood piece, which is oddly in the same colour as the headphone piece. MK’s mentor is the legendary Monkey King, who has also appeared in various outfits across the various sets, more so in this latest wave. His debut appearance saw him kitted out in an ornate suit of armour. This time around he’s wearing a fairly simple outfit, as he’s been stripped of his armour and other accessories.
Pigsy is MK’s hot-tempted boss and joins the team of heroes to take on the Iron Bull King and Spider Queen’s armies. The Minifigure uses a unique element for his head, which is paired with a chef’s hat. The character also uses the reasonably new jointed short legs, which I prefer over the single piece short legs. The character has appeared in a few sets, but the version here has a new torso print, which features a tactical belt. This appears to be sporting a couple of things that look like sausages. Which is slightly worrying. A ‘random’ civilian is also included in the set, that’s how he is listed in the product description, but he’s actually called Jai and appeared in the Monkey King Mech set. He’s made up of fairly common pieces, especially that sunset torso, it’s a shame the character wasn’t a little more unique or at least relevant to the Monkie Kid world.
The final two characters are the bad guys. The Spider Queen first and only appearance up until this point was in the second wave of Monkie Kid sets. The Minifigure uses a unique headdress element, which looks a little like the legs of a spider. It’s similar to the piece used for Hela from the Thor sets. She’s added a cape this time around, which is made from a rigid plastic material. The spider web pattern looks great, although the LEGO copyright mark is a little on the large side. The print detail on all aspects of the character is great and a little more colourful compared to her previous costume, I especially like the detail on the two different faces. She’s joined by the spider demon, Syntax. I love this Minifigure, there’s so much going on with it. The print detail on the torso and legs is great. His menacing grin peeking from under the VR goggles looks great and his robotic arms, give him a spider-like appearance. I especially like that he uses one of those arms to hold his cup.
It’s a hefty set, which is visually striking and just as impressive as some of the other large-scale Monkie Kid sets. The use of colours works amazingly well and makes the Spider Queen fleet notable from Iron Bull King’s collection of weaponry. The various green elements, be they solid colour or transparent pieces, give the set a menacing feel. As if a huge spider robot base isn’t menacing enough. The play functions seem limited but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any playability. The set is perfect for integrating into stories of good versus evil. I really didn’t expect it to be so imposing, but it was an enjoyable build and it’s surprisingly sturdy considering the configuration of a spider-like shape. As much as it had me reminiscing about He-man toys, it also carries the amazing inventiveness that original story-driven LEGO themes have. Sure it’s based on a well-known historical story, which has been told in countless ways, but it’s been given a fresh twist in LEGO form. This set is a great example of this. Stay tuned for more Monkie Kid set reviews.
This set was provided to BricksFanz by the LEGO Group for purposes of review. The thoughts within this review are that of BricksFanz and do not reflect those of the LEGO Group. Providing the set for free does not guarantee a favourable opinion of the set.