LEGO has just launched a Tongal contest for LEGO Friends videos with $20,000 at stake. This is the latest of several contests TLG has run through Tongal this year (a few are still open for submissions, so be sure to check them out). The winning entries of the past contests can be viewed on the Fan Creations tab on the new LEGO YouTube page.
While the current phase of the Tongal contest is just for submitting the story ideas that will guide the later video entries, I’m already thinking ahead to the problems that animators will run into in the video phase. Unlike minfigures, which have 7 points of articulation (2 at the hip, 2 shoulders, 2 wrists, 1 at the neck + a bonus 1 with hat/hair), the Friends mini-dolls only have 4 points of articulation (1 at the hip, 2 shoulders, 1 at the neck + bonus one with hat/hair). Because their legs are fused together, mini-dolls can’t perform the standard walk cycle (or the many variants) of their minifig cousins.
So how are the LEGO Friends figures going to get around when it comes time to animate them? Submit a video or image of a mini-doll walk cycle in the comments of this post before September 20th, and I’ll feature the best ones in a follow-up post.