Lego has been a feature of many children's toy boxes for many years and more than just a few parents have discovered just how painful stepping on a stray brick can be! But, why has such a simple toy endured for so long?
Today, Lego sets come in many different types, as well as just the big box of standard bricks. Now you can get Star Wars sets and City sets, to mention but a few, and that's probably the first reason that this toy has managed to stay on top of its game.
Lego was first manufactured in 1949 and the now famous interlocking bricks were originally called "Automatic Binding Bricks". The first bricks were not very versatile, and they did not lock together very well. The modern style of brick was first produced in 1958 and the basic design of the interlocking bricks has not changed since.
After that fact that the toy is now more than 50 years old, Lego has managed to keep the brand up to date and relevant by keeping up with the times. Many of the sets that are on sale today are branded around movies, like Star Wars or Batman. So, while the modest little plastic bricks will unduly still end up loose in the toy box just as they always have done, they start life as a part of an exciting and up to date action figure set.
Unlike regular action figure sets, though, the bricks can be used to create anything. So, while a Harry Potter figure may be discarded once Wizards are no longer cool, a Harry Potter Lego set can still be morphed into Power Rangers, Transformers, or whatever else may be popular at the time.
In fact, most instructions for the sets are probably lost forever following the very first build. After that a child's imagination starts to run free and they begin to create their own robots, spacecraft, and jet planes. And, of course, the parents are just waiting for an excuse to get down on the carpet to lend a helping hand with the construction projects too.
Today Lego is a multibillion dollar enterprise that encompasses theme parks, retail stores, and movies like the recently released Lego Batman Movie. All of which helps to keep the building blocks modern and relevant.
The other thing that helps keep Lego relevant is that is neither a boy's toy nor a girl's toy. Those little plastic barriers will work just as well as a doll house as they will a fortress or a tank. These blocks are durable too, so they can be handed down from one child to the next, or even one generation to the next.
Best of all, you can spend hours creating a masterpiece and then smash it all up and start all over again. There is no fiddling around with glue or paint and every single part can be reused in another model.
So, why is Lego still so popular? Because a set can start out as one thing and then become anything your imagination can come up with. While the sets may have become more complex and the figurines have become more detailed, the basic premise of Lego us that you put it together any way you like, over and over again. Who could ever get bored with that?