Replica 007 Aston Martins, 6,000-piece castles, Indiana Jones airplanes — we’re proud to say that playing with LEGOs as an adult is happening right now in our living room.
Maybe we can’t fix the engine of a car or build a boat from metalworking, but we bet we can channel our inner 10-year-olds and build these highly rewarding and intricate LEGO sets, which is grown-up enough for us.
Who’s bringing the Capri Sun and Gushers?
‘Star Wars’ Imperial Star Destroyer
In essence, it’s a Star Wars ship. In detail, it’s the Imperial Navy’s most powerful intergalactic destroyer and the heart of the Emperor’s fleet. Packed with heavy armory, turbo blasters, and tractor beam projectors, the LEGO Imperial Star Destroyer is a massive 1,359 pieces and rocks a removable top and crazily detailed interior, including rotating chairs for the Imperial crew, weapons racks, a control panel, and bridge. Duh, you can fire the spring-loaded shooters and aim the eight synchronized cannons. Go ahead, call us dorks. We DGAF.
Taj Mahal Model
Discontinued by LEGO (like the Imperial Star Destroyer), you can still get your hands on the insanely intricate Taj Mahal model that will set you back over a grand. Previously the title holder for largest LEGO set of all time, 5,922 pieces make up the replica marble mausoleum on the south bank of India’s Yamuna river. Get your friends in on this LEGO build, because you’re going to need plenty of help.
‘Harry Potter’ Hogwarts Castle
Let your Muggle flag fly and dive into this LEGO replica of Harry Potter’s Hogwarts Castle, with is highly detailed at 6,020 pieces. Over 107 reviewers agree this LEGO set gets five out of five bricks, but no magic wand will help you put together the towers, turrets, chambers, classrooms, creatures, Whomping Willow, or Hagrid’s hut. Yes, there’s a Great Hall with buildable stained glass windows, moving staircases, a Potions classroom with racks of ingredients, a Defense Against the Dark Arts classroom — honestly, it seems like nearly every single room from the books is in this massive LEGO set, plus 27 micro-figures, buildable boats, etc. You literally have to download a PDF for the building instructions, which would have Dementor-ed the life out of our 12-year-old selves. We’re braver now.
The majority of our adult LEGO favorites belong to the LEGO Technic category, which is basically the brands equivalent to a cool car manufacturer. This burley 4X4 Crawler is made of 1,327 pieces that, once assembled, can be taken outside to romp over sand dunes and rocks thanks to the high-performance suspension and operating remote controller. Of course, the doors open and there’s four-wheel drive.
Lego Architecture Studio Building Set
Let your inner architect create the blueprint for a 1,200-brick Studio Building Set that is highly modern and giving off serious James Bond villain lair vibes. The advanced set includes a mix of white and transparent blocks, as well as sorting trays for grown-up organization (only kids throw all their LEGOs into a popcorn tin, right?). For the less creative, it comes with an inspiration guidebook full of tips and techniques, but the point of the Architecture Studio Building Set is to create your own style. REX architecture and Sou Fujimoto Architects endorsed the set, meaning it’s a legit adult toy that won’t look as juvenile as the Hogwarts Castle displayed on your mantle (or LEGO furniture).
Porsche 911 GT3 RS
Now we’re cooking with gas. Despite the mini-supercar size of the LEGO Porsche 911 GT3 RS, it takes 2,704 individual pieces to assemble — but that makes sense when you’re dealing with German sports car legend. Inside the box, you’ll find a special collector’s book chronicling the history of Porsche GT cars and the history of LEGO Technic. What’s really cool is that assembling the LEGO model gives a glimpse into the unique sequence of the real vehicle’s assembly. Bold orange bodywork houses an accessible cockpit with a detailed dashboard, working gearbox, and gearshift paddles. Open the rear lid for a detailed flat 6 engine and moving pistons. Completing this LEGO feel like winning F1. Shake up the Champagne and celebrate. If only it was a life-sized.
‘Indiana Jones’ Fighter Plane Attack
What’s so immature about pretending you’re Indiana Jones escaping a zeppelin in a stolen bi-plane? Enjoy a LEGO build without going full-fledged 6,000-plus piece master-build with this 384-piece set of two planes, as well as Professor Jones and Jones Sr. figures. Since you’re in the air, don’t worry — there are no snakes. If you love this LEGO set, expand your Indie-verse with the Indiana Jones Race for the Stolen Treasure.
Classical music-listening adults can still enjoy LEGO. Case in point: a detailed brick model of the Trevi Fountain. The real Fontana di Trevi in Rome took 30 years to build and was completed by the original builder’s friend 11 years after his death. But at only 731 pieces, you can call your Trevi done before happy hour. That includes the facade of the Palazzo Poli; the statues of Ocean, Abundance, and Health; plus translucent blue water-effect bricks.
James Bond Aston Martin DB 5
Enough said. We ogled all the specs of 007’s LEGO ride here. Yes, there’s an ejector seat.
Air Race Jet
If you don’t like jets, maybe you should just leave because we’re stoked to assemble the 1,151-brick supersonic aerodynamic LEGO Technic Air Race Jet that includes motorized functions. A jet nozzle is adjustable for both vertical and horizontal takeoff with hatch access to a spinning fan, retractable undercarriage, and adjustable flaps. Sorry, it doesn’t really fly on its own, but the manual functions are front-steering, an opening cockpit, and movable tail rudders. It’s designed to be a build-and-play experience, but we think it also looks handsome left alone.
Cuusoo ‘Ghostbusters’ Ecto-1
Dibs on playing Dr. Peter Venkman! LEGO released the Ghostbuster Ecto-1 to commemorate 30 years of ghost-busting and modeled this set off the iconic car from the ’80s movie. In LEGO fashion, the company loaded it up with paranormal detection equipment like proton packs and a removable roof and tracking computer. The instruction packet also includes secret, behind-the-scenes details about the OG film. At 508 pieces, you’ll be able to watch and quote the movie while constructing the Cadillac Miller-Meteor ambulance limo.
‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Silent Mary Ship
Venture to eBay and outbid all the scallywags to get this Pirates of the Caribbean Silent Mary 1) because pirates are cool and 2) because of all the rum you can drink figuring out where 2,294 parts go. Highly detailed with an opening skeleton hull, movable rudder, collapsible masts, rowboats, and a mess of weaponry — you need rum to even attempt. Trust us.
Bionicle Skopio XV-1
Honestly, I don’t know what a Bionicle Skopio is (maybe a part of the Ninjago movement?), but this scorpion transformer is wicked sick. And, at over $600, you know it’s going to be a good build. The Satanic insect creature morphs into a vehicle and the construction should definitely say 20-30 years old instead of 10-16 because these pieces are a mind-bend. The Skopio is armed with blasters, a threatening spiked Thornax launcher, and moving pincers.