Review: Tripod Invader set #7051

The new Alien Conquest series makes me chuckle, so I had to check out one of the sets. I picked this one because it comes with a tripod machine, an obvious homage to “The War of the Worlds.” There is also a little creature they call an “alien clinger” that is just a PG version of the facehuggers from the “Alien” franchise. With that in mind, how could I resist?

The clinger has a strange fascination with briefcases.

“The next knuckle-dragging primate that makes a joke about George Jetson is getting turned inside out.”

Having built the set and played around with it, my opinion is that it is OK, but nothing special at 166 pieces. The tripod legs can be moved into different poses, though the actual range of motion is limited by the design. It will never squat all the way to the ground nor reach higher; the height seems fixed at about 8 inches no matter how you position the legs. The limited number of pieces and nature of the pieces included also leave something to be desired.

On the positive side, the tripod stays together fairly well. The most common issue is that the radar dish feet fall off. The saucer is designed to detach from the tripod assembly, allowing it to become an independent flying spacecraft. The little ship is both simple and durable. I like that compact UFO.

Undoubtedly, the highlight of the set is the minifigures. The businessman, with his two-sided head (one happy face, one frightened face) and briefcase isn’t terribly unique, but fitting. The alien trooper is neat, though I like the Zando-Zan inspired alien pilots from other Alien Conquest sets better. By far my favorite piece of LEGO in this set is the parasitic clinger. Who doesn’t want a little green tentacled monster that gloms onto people?

Building this was quick and easy. The worst part is affixing the stickers. I’ve always had a problem putting stickers on pieces that are either curved or non-symmetrical, and this set has both. Thankfully there are not many stickers.

The instructions are acceptable. Favorite part in this set: (besides the alien clinger) the 6 dark purple 3×2 curved slopes. Least favorite part in this set: The 1×9 bent technic links; I think that replacing them would require a lot more parts, but would also give the tripod a greater range of motion.

“But I don’t like spaghetti!”
MSRP is $19.99. What would I pay for this set? My target is $16.99 or less, which should happen once the set is no longer so new, or if a retailer offers it on sale.


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