Bet you’ve never heard of LEGO Cuusoo. (I have no idea how it’s pronounced.) It’s an utterly brilliant idea from the minds at LEGO, that works a lot like Kickstarter. But instead of crowd-funding random projects, LEGO fans build cool new stuff and you get to vote on whether or not LEGO makes an official set out of it!
LEGO Cuusoo puts the power to create new LEGO sets in your hands. It’s simple. You create something with your existing LEGO bricks. Take pictures of it and upload them to the LEGO Cuusoo website. Spread the word and try to get 10,000 people to sign up as “supporters” of your project. Unlike Kickstarter, supporters don’t pledge money, just interest in buying the set if it’s sold in stores. Though the site asks you how much you’d be willing to pay for the set, how many copies of a given set you’d buy, and why you think it should be made by LEGO.
If you succeed in getting 10,000 supporters, your project will be reviewed by the professionals at LEGO, who have the final word on whether or not to make and market your set. The best part? If LEGO makes your set, they’ll give you a 1% royalty on the net sales of the set, presumably forever. It gives talented builders a chance to influence the sets that LEGO chooses to create, and get something out of it in return.
The site is still in beta right now, but already there’s an impressive collection of proposed LEGO sets available to view, and you can sign up and add your own project anytime. Current projects seeking supporters include the DeLorean time machine from Back to the Future, an impressively detailed Settlers of Catan board game, a scaled replica/diorama of the “Love Boat” cruise ship, and more.