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Friday, April 19, 2024

The Best LEGO Sets for Adults in 2023

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In recent years it's become clear that LEGO sets aren't just for kids. The Danish brick-building company has been putting out loads of sets with an 18+ age recommendation for years now. These are typically sets based on things adults might be into, including geek culture and nostalgic properties, and they often come with a placard and/or stand so you can display them as decorations on a shelf or desk. Let’s take a look at some of the best LEGO sets for adults in 2023.

LEGO Sets for Adults

LEGO The Lord of the Rings: RivendellLEGO The Lord of the Rings: Rivendell This set comes at a premium price, but it’s also a huge, gorgeously detailed set perfect for any adult fan of The Lord of the Rings.$499.99

Lots of LEGO sets for adults are easily catagorizable (see the categories below). Others are one-off sets that are very cool, but harder to drop in a list with other similar sets. That's what we're looking at here. The LEGO Optimus Prime set actually transforms, which is an incredible feat of engineering. That Titanic set is among the biggest and most impressive LEGO sets ever released. As for the Lord of the Rings one, check out our feature on building the LEGO Rivendell set. It's a remarkable build and a display piece you'll want to put somewhere prominent.

Star Wars LEGO Sets

LEGO Star Wars X-Wing StarfighterAvailable nowLEGO Star Wars X-Wing Starfighter Set #75355, includes 1,949 pieces.$239.99

Of all the LEGO sets for adults, no theme is better served than Star Wars. LEGO has been pumping out all kinds of sets, ranging from a line of iconic buildable helmets to dioramas of memorable scenes from the films. And if you have a big enough budget, you can get some truly massive and impressive sets in the premium Ultimate Collector Series, like the X-Wing above and an enormous AT-AT. Check out our feature on building the LEGO X-Wing Starfighter.

See our larger list of the best Star Wars LEGO sets for more Star Wars gift ideas.

LEGO Plant Sets

LEGO Icons Flower BouquetLEGO Icons Flower Bouquet This buildable bouquet is perfect for gifting to yourself or your favorite person. It’s filled with a wide variety of flowers as well, including roses, snapdragons, poppies, and more.20% off $59.99$47.99

Nothing projects the idea that you're a grown adult like owning a plant. These LEGO plants and flowers are fun to build, and they look downright elegant. Better yet, you don't need to water them to keep them alive. Because they're not.

Comic Book LEGO Sets

LEGO Marvel Spider-Man Daily Bugle 76178 3,772-Piece Building KitLEGO Marvel Spider-Man Daily Bugle 76178 3,772-Piece Building Kit This towering build of Spidey’s hometown paper is impressive on its own, plus it includes a jaw-dropping 25 minifigures of recognizable heroes and villains.$349.95

LEGO has a whole lot of Marvel and DC sets for kids, but there are also some killer sets for adults. My favorite among them is the LEGO Spider-Man Daily Bugle, but it's on the expensive (and big) side. Other options include a LEGO Technic Batmobile.

See our larger list of the best Marvel LEGO sets for more Marvel gift ideas.

Video Game LEGO Sets

LEGO Super Mario The Might BowserLEGO Super Mario The Might Bowser $269.95

You can find video game-based LEGO sets for adults that encompass everything from nostalic plays like the LEGO NES to more modern sets like the LEGO Tallneck from Horizon: Forbidden West. One of our LEGO critic's favorite recent builds was the impressive LEGO Mighty Bowser set. I also love BD-1, the droid from Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and Survivor.

See our list of the best Nintendo LEGO Sets for more ideas.

Harry Potter LEGO Sets

Hogwarts Express - Collector's EditionLEGOHogwarts Express – Collector's Edition Build the model steam train, the engine, coal tender and a 3-room passenger carriage with lights that reveal 3 classic scenes from the movies!$499.95

Not all of these LEGO Harry Potter sets are in the 18+ category, but they're among the larger builds in the Wizarding World universe, and they're all pretty awesome for fans of the books and movies.

See our larger list of the best Harry Potter LEGO sets for more Harry Potter gift ideas.

LEGO Architecture Sets

LEGO Architecture Landmark Collection Great Pyramid of GizaLEGO Architecture Landmark Collection Great Pyramid of Giza $129.99

The LEGO Architecture line is great. It lets you build famous buildings, monuments, and cities, and display them anywhere you want. They're fun to build and no one would mistake them for sets intended for kids.

Car LEGO Sets

LEGO Technic Peugeot 9X8 24H Le Mans Hybrid HypercarLEGO Technic Peugeot 9X8 24H Le Mans Hybrid Hypercar Set #42156, contains 1,775 pieces.$199.99

LEGO has been making car sets for adults for a while. If you love an iconic sports car, there's a chance you can find a LEGO set based on it. You can also pick up some awesome geek culture vehicles, like the Ghostbusters' ECTO-1 and the Back to the Future time machine.


For more ideas, you can check out all the LEGO sets on the IGN Store.

Chris Reed is a deals expert and commerce editor for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @_chrislreed.

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