FUNWHOLE: LAKESIDE LODGE Modular Building Set Review - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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FUNWHOLE: LAKESIDE LODGE Modular Building Set Review

Despite LEGO dominating the building brick market, there's been no shortage of alternative brands and products across the last few years, all hoping to topple the Danish behemoth's crown. One of the most interesting, and certainly the most eye-catching, is Funwhole. Originating from a basic understanding that the world we live in includes both day and night, the aesthetic of every one of their building sets reflects this, thanks to the world's first brand of light bricks. Yes, there have been other building block sets including lights (or optional add-ons), but these have often been an after thought or a individual single brick gimmick. Not so much with the Funwhole sets. The lighting is incredibly well considered and brings an entirely new dimension to the build when activated.
At 1969 pieces, complete with LED lights, really clever transfer stickers and some spectacular interior details, the new Lakeside Lodge from Funwhole is an absolute joy to build. It's what that other brand would consider Expert, but that's not to say young children won't get a kick out of building this. You will have to help them with the LED lights, as they can be delicate, but the good news is you add them in whilst building, not afterwards. And whilst your building, straightaway you'll notice the condition of the bricks. They definitely sit at the high-end of the market for quality, and are comparable to the best out there. They click together very well; no excessive force or loose connections.

The manual is really well detailed (and quite hefty) with very clear user instructions and step-by-step guidance for each building stage. Sometimes these manuals can feel hastily produced, with massive steps detailing dozens of bricks (meaning sometimes you can miss the odd one and have to break your build apart to insert it), so I was pleased to see there's never more than a handful of bricks to add at each step. It does mean there are 555 of those detailed steps, but this just added to the fun of the build and the value for money. It's also quite neat that the LED light bags are numbered to match the building brick bags, so no confusion was had there, and the stud sizes for the larger bricks are listed on the page (2x10, 2x8 etc), a simple addition but very helpful.
A bugbear of mine has long been the detail stickers included with many brands. Once they're on, they're on, and if you apply them even one degree askew then it becomes so noticeable and can spoil the enjoyment of your finished build (I have a LEGO London Bus set where the word 'Brickston' is slightly off center on the destination boarding). Funwhole offer a transparent sticker-transfer which really reduces the likelihood of that happening. It's almost like those kid-tattoos you used to get, but far more glossy. They are a joy to apply and add some really nice detail.

But that's nothing compared to the interior design (and of course the finished external view, but we'll get to that soon). The details within each room is incredible. Take a look at the kitchen below; coffee machine, cooker, hob, extractor, storage, etc, and all complimented with well thought out lighting so you can admire your build at any time of day.
And that's another great design choice within the Lakeside Lodge - there is no back wall. Let me just say, this is a good thing. Consider the wonderful Birch Books modular set from LEGO, if you've built it you'll know it's packed with tiny details within its four walls - the same four walls that then cover up the vast majority of those tiny details! With the Lakeside Lodge from Funwhole it's easy to admire your build both inside and out without having to pull it apart to do so.

The big sales point for any set is clearly the finished aesthetic. At the end of the day, you're likely going to purchase and build a large modular building brick set to display it. Fortunately, the finished build here is stunning. You can see this in the lead image at the top of the page, but even by day the Lakeside Lodge looks great, thanks to a good choice of colour palette in the bricks. The external detail is as considered as the rooms (with the porch area being a personal favourite).
All round, the Lakeside Lodge from Funwhole was a delight to build and is now a delight to look at. The bricks themselves are of good quality, and the LED lights are the icing on the cake of this wonderful modular set - they don't make it, as such, they compliment it. And that's what good design is all about.

Explore the Funwhole range on their website.

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