While Lego is the most well-known brand in the building block world, there are numerous other companies offering unique and innovative construction sets that are worth exploring. These alternatives provide different building experiences, themes, and challenges, expanding the possibilities for creative construction. Here are six building block brands any brick lover should try out.

1. Mega Construx

Mega Construx is a division of Mega Brands, a Canadian company founded in 1967 and acquired by Mattel in 2014. Known for its highly detailed and articulated sets, Mega Construx often bases its products on popular franchises such as Halo, Call of Duty, Pokémon, and Masters of the Universe. The brand's advantage lies in its detailed and realistic figures and pieces, particularly in its franchise-themed sets, which appeal to both collectors and young builders who are fans of these franchises. Mega Construx also emphasizes articulation in their figures, offering more points of movement compared to traditional minifigures.

Recommended Sets:

  1. Pokémon Gyarados (2018): This small set features 352 bricks that come together to create an intricately detailed model of the popular Pokémon Gyarados. The set includes articulated parts, allowing for dynamic poses, which makes it a hit among Pokémon fans and collectors alike.
  2. Halo Warthog Run (2018): A medium-sized set with 318 bricks, featuring a classic Halo vehicle with moving parts and multiple figures. This set is designed for action-packed play and display, capturing the excitement of the Halo universe.
  3. Call of Duty Warthog (2015): With 481 bricks, this medium set offers a detailed military vehicle and soldier figures. The Warthog set provides an engaging build and play experience, featuring realistic weaponry and accessories that appeal to fans of military themes and the Call of Duty franchise.
  4. Pokémon Charizard (2019): This medium set includes 198 bricks to build a detailed and poseable model of Charizard, one of the most beloved Pokémon. The set's design emphasizes articulation, allowing for various dynamic poses.
  5. Game of Thrones Daenerys & Drogon (2019): A medium set with 735 bricks, featuring a detailed model of Daenerys Targaryen and her dragon Drogon. This set captures the epic fantasy theme and includes articulated dragon wings and other realistic features.
  6. Halo UNSC Infinity (2019): Representing the iconic spaceship from the Halo series, this large set includes 2,456 bricks. The UNSC Infinity is an impressive build, showcasing intricate details and large scale, making it a centerpiece for any Halo fan's collection. The set also includes multiple figures and vehicles, adding to its playability and display value.
  7. Masters of the Universe Castle Grayskull (2020): A massive set with 3,508 bricks, this set recreates the iconic Castle Grayskull from the Masters of the Universe series. The set includes detailed interiors and numerous action features, as well as several character figures.

2. K'NEX

K’NEX was founded in 1992 by Joel Glickman in the United States and was later acquired by Basic Fun! in 2018. Specializing in rod and connector systems, K’NEX allows for dynamic and mechanical builds, including roller coasters and amusement park rides. The brand's flexibility and dynamic construction capabilities offer a unique building experience that differs from traditional bricks, focusing on motion and engineering concepts. K’NEX sets are known for their educational value, often used in classrooms to teach principles of engineering and physics.

Recommended Sets:

  1. K’NEX Beginner 40 Model Building Set (2016): This small set with 131 pieces provides a simple introduction to the K’NEX system. It includes a variety of rods and connectors that can be assembled into multiple models, such as cars, animals, and structures, offering young builders a taste of what K’NEX can do.
  2. K’NEX STEM Explorations: Swing Ride Building Set (2017): This small set includes 486 pieces to build a functioning swing ride, perfect for introducing builders to basic engineering concepts.
  3. K’NEX 35 Model Ultimate Building Set (2018): A medium set with 480 pieces that allows for the construction of 35 different models, offering endless creative possibilities.
  4. K’NEX Amazin’ 8 Roller Coaster Building Set (2017): With 448 pieces, this medium set features a motorized roller coaster with a vertical chain lift and over 14 feet of track.
  5. K’NEX Imagine Power and Play Motorized Building Set (2017): A medium set that includes 529 pieces and motorized components, allowing for more complex and interactive builds. This set encourages creativity and innovation, as builders can create moving models like windmills, cars, and cranes, powered by a battery-operated motor.
  6. K’NEX Thrill Rides Bionic Blast Roller Coaster (2018): With 809 pieces, this large set delivers an exciting construction experience with a functioning roller coaster. The Bionic Blast Roller Coaster set features a motorized chain lift and over 19 feet of track, providing a thrilling ride experience. It stands over 3 feet tall when completed, making it an impressive display piece as well as a fun toy.
  7. K’NEX Cobweb Curse Coaster Building Set (2019): A large set with 473 pieces that builds a spooky, spider-themed roller coaster, complete with motorized chain lift and a glow-in-the-dark track.

3. Cobi

Founded in 1987, Cobi is a Polish company that specializes in historical and military-themed building sets. Known for its high level of detail and accuracy, Cobi offers models of military vehicles, tanks, and planes from various wars. The compatibility of Cobi bricks with other brands allows for integration into existing collections, providing flexibility and creative expansion. Cobi sets are often praised for their educational value and historical accuracy, making them popular among history enthusiasts and model builders. The company has partnerships with museums and historical societies to ensure the accuracy of their models.

Recommended Sets:

  1. Small Army Jeep Willys MB (2019): This small set includes 91 bricks that provide a taste of Cobi’s detailed military models. The Jeep Willys MB is an iconic vehicle from World War II, and this set features authentic details such as a spare tire, jerry can, and a machine gun, making it a great addition to any military model collection.
  2. WWII Panzer IV Ausf. G (2018): A small set with 450 bricks, this model accurately depicts one of the most common German tanks of World War II. It includes a rotating turret and moving tracks.
  3. Small Army M4 Sherman Tank (2019): A medium set with 620 bricks, featuring the iconic American tank from World War II. The set includes moving tracks, a rotating turret, and a detailed interior.
  4. World War II Tiger I (2017): A medium-sized project with 550 bricks, offering an intricate build of the famous Tiger I tank. This set includes moving parts, such as a rotating turret and adjustable gun barrel, and comes with detailed accessories and figures, providing a comprehensive building and playing experience for history buffs.
  5. F/A-18E Super Hornet (2018): A large set with 570 bricks, representing the modern fighter jet used by the U.S. Navy. The set features retractable landing gear and detailed decals.
  6. Steam Locomotive Train (2021): A large set with 530 bricks, recreating a classic steam locomotive with intricate details and moving parts. This set is a recent addition that showcases Cobi's expertise in creating historically accurate models with engaging build experiences.
  7. Historical Collection Battleship Bismarck (2020): This large set with 2,030 bricks showcases the impressive size and detail of the historical Battleship Bismarck. The model features moving parts, such as rotating turrets and adjustable guns, and includes a display stand with a nameplate. This set is a challenging build that results in a stunning and historically accurate model of one of the most famous battleships of World War II.

4. Nanoblock

Nanoblock, launched by Kawada Co., Ltd. in Japan in 2008, is known for its micro-sized building blocks that allow for incredibly detailed models. The small size of the pieces means you can create intricate designs that wouldn’t be possible with larger blocks. This makes Nanoblock sets perfect for hobbyists looking for a challenging and detailed building experience. The brand's focus on miniature scale models of famous landmarks, animals, and musical instruments offers a unique appeal to adult builders and collectors. Nanoblock sets are often displayed as decorative items due to their intricate details and small footprint.

Recommended Sets:

  1. Mini Collection Series Sights to See (2015): A small set featuring around 200 tiny bricks that come together to create miniature models of famous landmarks, such as the Eiffel Tower or the Statue of Liberty. These sets are perfect for beginners looking to try their hand at Nanoblock's intricate building style.
  2. Grand Piano (2016): This small set with 180 bricks builds a detailed miniature grand piano, complete with moving keys and a lid that opens and closes.
  3. Electric Guitar (2017): This medium-sized project includes 380 bricks and offers more complexity and detail. The Electric Guitar set allows builders to create a highly detailed replica of a classic instrument, complete with strings, frets, and a stand, making it a great display piece for music enthusiasts.
  4. Space Shuttle (2019): A medium set with 380 bricks that builds a detailed model of the NASA Space Shuttle, complete with launch pad and boosters.
  5. Neuschwanstein Castle (2018): A medium set with 580 bricks that creates a detailed model of the famous German castle, capturing its intricate architecture and fairy-tale charm.
  6. Tokyo Tower (2018): With 1,500 bricks, this large set showcases the brand’s potential for intricate and detailed builds. The Tokyo Tower set replicates the iconic structure with precision, including its distinct red and white color scheme. The finished model stands over 10 inches tall, making it an impressive and eye-catching display piece.
  7. Himeji Castle (2015): A large set with 2,200 bricks that recreates the famous Japanese castle with stunning detail, making it a challenging and rewarding build for experienced builders.

5. BrickArms

Founded in 2006, BrickArms is an American company specializing in custom weapons and accessories compatible with major brand minifigures. While BrickArms doesn’t offer full sets, its products are perfect for enhancing your existing creations. The brand's detailed and high-quality accessories add a level of realism and customization not typically found in standard sets, making them popular among collectors and those looking to add a unique touch to their builds. BrickArms produces a wide range of historical, modern, and futuristic weapons and gear, catering to various themes and interests.

Recommended Sets:

  1. WW2 German Weapons Pack (2017): A small starter pack featuring around 20 custom pieces that replicate World War II-era weapons, such as rifles, machine guns, and grenades. This set is ideal for enhancing historical sets or creating custom military minifigures.
  2. Modern Combat Pack (2019): A small set with 15 pieces, including contemporary firearms and tactical gear, perfect for modern military-themed builds.
  3. Medieval Weapons Pack (2017): A medium set with 20 pieces, including swords, shields, and armor, ideal for enhancing castle and fantasy builds.
  4. Sci-Fi Weapons Pack (2016): This medium option includes 25 custom pieces perfect for sci-fi enthusiasts. The pack features a variety of futuristic weapons and accessories, such as laser guns, blasters, and energy swords, adding a unique touch to any space or sci-fi themed build.
  5. Zombie Defense Pack (2020): A medium set with 30 pieces, featuring weapons and accessories designed for a zombie apocalypse scenario, adding a unique theme to your creations.
  6. Ultimate Custom Weapons Pack (2018): A large collection offering over 50 custom pieces, providing extensive customization options for your minifigures. The pack includes a mix of historical, modern, and futuristic weapons and accessories, making it a versatile addition to any collection.
  7. Starship Trooper Pack (2021): A large set with 50 pieces, featuring futuristic weaponry and armor, perfect for sci-fi and space-themed builds.

6. Dragon Blok

Dragon Blok is a building block brand produced by Canadian toy company Ritvik Holdings. Established to provide affordable and creative alternatives to more expensive building sets, Dragon Blok focuses on a wide range of themes and offers compatibility with other bricks. The brand is particularly popular for its accessibility and value, making it a great choice for budget-conscious builders looking for variety without sacrificing quality.

Recommended Sets:

  1. Dragon Blok Fire Engine (2021): This small set includes 150 bricks that come together to build a detailed fire engine, complete with a movable ladder and firefighter minifigures. It is perfect for young builders and those interested in emergency services themes.
  2. Dragon Blok Eiffel Tower (2020): A medium set with 450 bricks that builds a detailed model of the iconic Eiffel Tower. This set is part of Dragon Blok's architecture line, offering a challenging and rewarding build for fans of famous landmarks.
  3. Dragon Blok Castle Siege (2018): With 750 bricks, this large set allows builders to create an impressive medieval castle, complete with battlements, knights, and siege weapons. The detailed design and interactive features make it a great addition to any medieval-themed collection.
  4. Dragon Blok Space Explorer (2020): This small set with 200 bricks builds a detailed space rover and astronaut figures, perfect for young space enthusiasts.
  5. Dragon Blok City Construction Site (2019): A medium set with 400 bricks, featuring construction vehicles, workers, and a detailed construction site setup. This set is ideal for builders interested in urban development and machinery.
  6. Dragon Blok Big Ben (2019): A medium set with 500 bricks that constructs a model of the iconic Big Ben clock tower. As part of the architecture line, it provides an engaging and educational building experience.
  7. Dragon Blok Adventure Island (2020): A large set with 800 bricks that builds an adventurous island setting, complete with explorers, hidden treasures, and various interactive elements. This set offers endless possibilities for storytelling and creative play.

Exploring these other brands sets can open up a whole new world of building possibilities. Whether you’re into historical models, intricate micro-builds, or custom accessories, there’s something here for everyone.

Stay connected and stylish with more insights from the world of creative building sets at Land of Geek.

#AlternativeBuildingSets #CreativeConstruction #NonLego #BuildingToys #GeekCulture

Jun 26, 2024
Lego And Construction Models

More from 

Lego And Construction Models


View All