We built the $150 Xbox 360 made of Lego-like Mega bricks

Have I mentioned recently that I have the best job in the world? This week, I spent three and a half hours building an Xbox 360 out of Mega Bloks, the Lego-like bricks produced by Mattel.

In September, we brought you word that Target would exclusively sell a brick-built $150 Xbox 360 replica, complete with a gamepad, internal Easter eggs, and a “copy” of Halo 3.

Now, ahead of an October 8th debut, I’ve built the thing, snapped some hasty photos, and shot a little basic video:

It’s a slick set that absolutely captures the essence of the console — even if it might not live up to The Lego Group’s exacting standards when it comes to build quality.

Mattel starts you off with an appetizer — the Xbox 360 Wireless Gamepad — and it perfectly illustrates what the entire build is like.

Pros: Mattel nails the overall profile, turns the iconic guide button, joysticks, and (terrible) D-pad into perfect-match custom parts, and lights it up with a button-battery powered light brick that glows for eight seconds after you tap the guide button.

The joysticks have soft, flexible rubber stems that let you move them around, too. Every part with letters is printed — unlike many Lego sets, there’s not a single sticker in the entire box.

I also love that the controller “doesn’t have power” when you remove its battery because that’s where the light brick is installed! Each trigger and bumper is printed, the sync button is printed, the charge-and-play port is printed, and there’s even a printed headset jack on the bottom.

Cons: The printing quality is pretty hit-and-miss. The letters don’t line up perfectly for the legends above the “Back” and “Start” buttons. The “X” and “Y” aren’t centered on their corresponding face buttons. Some pieces, like the D-pad and the triggers, are flimsily attached by a single stud underneath — my D-pad has fallen off four times already when I’ve bumped it.

I don’t envy the designer who had to capture the Xbox 360’s subtle curves in brick form, and I’m a bit in awe. So many of them are spot on.

But there are also plenty of places Mattel’s blocks don’t line up with one another — sometimes because the bricks aren’t shaped for purpose and sometimes due to imperfections on the assembly line. An extra bit of plastic here, a misprint there; my Xbox power button‘s etched power logo is oh so slightly rotated wrong.

Compared to my “Jasper” Xbox 360 Elite, the best 360 ever made. The brick disc drive slot replicates the shiny chrome. Neither it nor memory card or USB slots open on the brick version, though.

Mattel covers the Xbox 360 in so, so very many white tiles, and when I squint, it looks great! With them open, I see loads of gaps because the tiles were impossible to all line up.

It’d be quite an effort even if they were all printed correctly, partly because the inconsistent clutch power of Mega Bloks’ studs makes it hard to seat them all flush. But also, many of my “air vent holes” were slightly misprinted, with the black dots too high or too low compared to one another.

Glad they could replicate the four feet for lying it down horizontally.

You get proper chrome on the HDD logo, too. What capacity, though, I wonder?

The back of the console is arguably the most faithful part — I really love the simple execution of the recessed ports — but still, a bunch of mismatched black dots for the vent holes. They’re so close; I really wonder why they didn’t follow through!

You won’t find my Elite’s HDMI port on the brick version, but that’s surely intentional — the original Xbox 360 didn’t ship with one.

a:hover]:shadow-highlight-franklin dark:[&>a:hover]:shadow-highlight-franklin [&>a]:shadow-underline-black dark:[&>a]:shadow-underline-white”>Inside the console

Here’s where things get really neat — if you lift off the removable hard drive and press a green button, it’ll pop open a panel so you can peek inside.

I’ll let the images tell the story:

Press to pop open — though you’ll still need to pry.

The first panel exposes the “disc drive” and a big Xbox logo that glows green for a few seconds after you press. Yes, the disc spindle is not centered, despite Mattel’s marketing images showing otherwise...