Lego Boost is an awesome robot-building and code-learning kit


Normally, you’ll start by building and programming simple Lego robots and, with each success, the app guides you to progressively more complex projects and coding tasks.


If I have one criticism of this set, it’s that there is no easy way to find the tiny pieces you’re often looking for, except to go through each bag. To be fair, I chose to jump ahead and build one of the most complex Lego Boost projects, which meant I was searching for dozens of pieces through hundreds of build steps.


Getting started with Lego Boost is, in one way, at least, just as daunting as it would be with any other 847-piece Lego set. There are 11 plastic bags full of pieces that, since they build five different models (you can only build one at time), are not really organized in any way. Yes, the tail pieces for Frankie the Cat are all in one bag, but they are the exception.


First, it’s a true marriage between your Lego robot creations and the tablet-based app (iOS or Android). Instead of programming through the central Move hub or brick, everything — from the instructions to the programming of the central brick, sensors, and motor — happens on the tablet. Lego Boost doesn’t getting mired in tech set-up and the minutiae of actual code. It gets you building and coding through a icon-based drag-and-drop interface as quickly as possible.


Frankie the Cat is just one of a five robot-building projects in the new Lego Boost, a $159.99 model-building and code-training kit for kids (and adults). It joins a long line of Lego robotics products, like the stellar Mindstorms Ev3, that blend the build-it-yourself satisfaction of Lego bricks with the nerdy fascination of coding and robotics.