Brace yourself for set 76198 – Spider-Man & Doctor Octopus Mech Battle. For such a small set, there is a lot to unpack here.
Immediately, the first thing we notice about the box art is how action oriented it is.
The back of the box however is a peaceful resolution of the battle with Doc Ock being captured and handcuffed. Take note that the individual “web effect” parts are nicely pictured in the box art as well.
Unboxing starts now.
We get 2 bags with numbers. #1 for Spider-man and #2 for Doc Ock.
There are also 2 instruction booklets, one for each mech. Then, there is also 1 sticker sheet and a loose plastic packing the multiple web effects, which is truly hard to see from the studio lights that I used.
It is hard to see because they are trans-clear… but not really ‘clear’ ? It is hazy and scatters more light than it allows to pass through. It’s the same set used in set 76174 Spider-Man’s Monster Truck vs. Mysterio.
Jumping onto the first bag, it is all about Spider-man mech.
We got classic red, but with dark blue.
Quick view on the minifigure. Notice the printed arms? Yeah? The arms printing on Spider-man is also available in other cheaper sets – and this practice, adding arms printing on minifigures in cheap sets – has never been done outside the superheroes themes. The other time a minifigure came out with printed arms below USD 20 is last year’s 40418 Falcon & Black Widow Team-Up minifigure pack but only for the Black Widow minifigure. Regardless, it was also a Marvel set.
I’m getting ahead of myself… let’s look at the 2nd bag first because we still need to build Doctor Octopus mech.
From the get go, the mech already looks very promising because the intimidating 4 mechanical claws in addition to the 4 robotic limbs. In total, this mech has 8 appendages.
Looking at the back, you’ll see how the 4 mechanical arms are attached to the Technic pieces at the back.
There is a small catch in here. If you’re familiar with the connection used here, you’d know that the joints only bend along the ratchets so you are limited to that movement axis only. You cannot twist and turn the claws freely.
Personally, I do not see this as a problem because it still has plenty of articulation despite the limited direction. You’ll see more about that in the action-pose pictures later.
Before we go further, let’s address the stickers. Normally, the slope connected at the pilot hatch would have a print, like the one found on Spider-man’s mech. However, due to budgetary reasons (probably), the print got demoted as a sticker. The sticker definitely adds a layer of complexity to the mech visual design.
Looks more presentable with stickers but I could live without it. At least you have options, right?
The minifigures are stupendous. As mentioned earlier, the arms printing on Spider-man is present here, and it also has the dual moulded legs for the boots, making it a tad better than the previous iteration. Don’t you hope all minifigures are given this much love and attention to detail?
As for Doc Ock, he is practically the same minifigure from 76174 Spider-Man’s Monster Truck vs. Mysterio, just without the neck bracket accessory.
So we have established the minifigures are awesome. How about the actual builds of the mechs?
You can tell from the action poses of these mechs that I had a blast playing with them. Most especially with Doctor Octopus Mech. It stands out because it is highly posable and the sinister villain has an equally eye-catching mech colour scheme compared to its counterpart.
In conclusion, 76198 Spider-man vs Doc Octopus is a remarkable little set. At £17.99 / $19.99 / 19.99€ with 305 pieces, it is consistent with other superhero mech line-ups. While the PPP(Price per Piece ratio) is excellent, take note of how tiny most of these pieces are. What’s truly outstanding about this set is the perfect pairing of Spider-man and Doctor Octopus. Out of the box, you get 2 well-matched superhero and supervillain, with mechs! Not to mention, this set includes one of the best designed Spider-man minifigure sporting arms printing and dual moulded legs. This is insane value, and more sets at this price point should introduce this level of commitment to the minifigure quality. The only thing preventing me from giving this a perfect score is that I don’t like the legs of the Spider-man mech. Sounds silly but it is what it is. I had to try put on my negativity hat to come out with something I disliked and surprisingly, that’s the only thing I could muster. Therefore, this set receives a 4.5 out of 5 score from me.
This set will be available on shelves on the 26th of April 2021.
Comment below and share what you think about this set review. Take your time. This is Akira signing off.
The set used for this review was sent to us by The LEGO Group for the purpose of an honest review. Provision of sets do not in any way influence or guarantee a positive review.