November 20, 2023
November 21, 2023
From knights and pirates to spaceships and robots, 1990s Lego sets were in a league of their own! It was an era of experimentation for the Lego Group, and the bricktastic company threw all kinds of crazy stuff at the wall to see what would stick. Many different themes and styles were tested throughout the decade, ensuring that all of the Lego-loving 90s kids were well served no matter what they were into. We’ve constructed more than a few of the iconic sets from that era, so get ready for a nostalgic trip back down the Lego brick road with our top twelve 90s Lego sets.
Set Number: 1682-1
Number of Pieces: 392
Minifigs: Yes (3)
Current New Value: $809
Current Used Value: $85
Becoming an astronaut is a pretty common childhood dream, so it was obvious that Lego would capitalize on it eventually.
They did just that in 1990 when Lego released their first NASA-themed set, allowing kids to assemble the very symbol of space exploration – the humble space shuttle. While there are plenty more fantastical and complex Lego spaceships out there with similar ideas and constructions, there’s something undeniably appealing about building this piece of history.
This kit quickly became an essential part of every Lego city. After all, there’s no better advertisement for how advanced your brick civilization is than a docked spacecraft!
Like all the best 90s Lego sets, it’s the small additions like the cart, astronaut, and launch tower that really make the set come alive. It’s no surprise this timeless kit rocketed to the top of every kid’s wishlist!
Set Number: 6086-1
Number of Pieces: 588
Minifigs: Yes (12)
Current New Value: $2,594
Current Used Value: $400
When people think of vintage Lego sets from the 1990s, many will picture the legendary castle sets first. The Medieval theme has always been a cornerstone for Lego, and modern castle sets are still some of the most popular sets to this day.
However, all of them pale in comparison to this one.
1992’s Black Knight’s Castle is arguably one of the most beloved castles Lego Group has ever released. The black and grey color scheme gives this set a unique appeal compared to other castles, while simultaneously keeping it from being overly grim.
Once you’ve had the joy of building the castle itself, the wide array of extra items and figures adds an incredible amount of play value. All the little accessories, from the visored helmets to the cloaks, flags, and plumes, make this set a delight. There’s even a friendly ghost minifig to give your castle some extra spooky vibes!
Bricklink currently has this set sitting at a cool price of $2,594 for certified new kits, with current listings even going as high as $9,000! I bet you’re wishing you held on to this one all these years now, aren’t you?
Set Number: 6416-1
Number of Pieces: 229
Minifigs: Yes (4)
Current New Value: $555
Current Used Value: $76
If you ever wanted a Lego set that encapsulated the glitz and glamor of 1980s Miami, this would be the one for you.
With its soft pinks, pool, palm tree, stone driveway, and convertible sports car, this set just screams Miami opulence. The only thing missing is a minifigure of Tony Montanna!
While not the biggest or the most complex of builds, this set still manages to stand out – adding a tasteful touch of luxury to any Lego city. The house itself has good height and more depth than you might think, and there’s even space for a kitchen at the back.
Oh, and of course there’s an area for the obligatory pet parrot to stay.
Set Number: 6973-1
Number of Pieces: 417
Minifigs: Yes (3)
Current New Value: $729
Current Used Value: $147
Here, we have an easy contender for the best Lego spaceship ever.
1993’s Deep Freeze Defender is one of the ‘coolest’ 1990s Lego sets, and not just because of its icy theming. While its angular, low-profile construction makes the craft look incredibly sleek and fragile, it’s actually quite sturdy when fully assembled.
Designed by legendary Lego set craftsman Jørn Thomsen, the craft really feels like something you’d use to explore an icy alien planet, with two detachable cockpit modules on skis and a host of other awesome details. The middle section even opens up to reveal a rocket ready for launch, while the back section has a sliding door that hides a third modular vehicle.
You know, for those high-octane play sessions.
Set Number: 6286-1
Number of Pieces: 912
Minifigs: Yes (9)
Current New Value: $2,833
Current Used Value: $588
Spacecrafts not your thing? Well, how about this old-fashioned pirate ship – complete with cannons, monkeys, and plenty of swag to boot!
Sailing into stores in 1993, Skull Eye’s Schooner is the largest ship released by the Lego Group in their classic Lego pirates theme, and one of their most iconic pirate ships of all time. With its black and white sails featuring a massive jolly roger, the scallywags crewing this ship clearly weren’t afraid to advertise their intentions!
One of the most impressive elements of this kit is that the deck cannons can be easily rotated and moved to either side of the ship without taking them out. If the real pirates had this kind of tech, it’s safe to say history would have played out a lot differently!
Remembered as one of the all-time best classic Lego sets of the 90s, Skull’s Eye Schooner is dripping with character from prow to stern, and has a great variety of memorable minifigs – including the iconic Captain Roger (Redbeard).
Set Number: 6597-1
Number of Pieces: 894
Minifigs: Yes (12)
Current New Value: $553
Current Used Value: $173
The perfect accompaniment to the Space Shuttle Launch Lego set, 1994’s Century Skyway is a great example of just how much detail you can accomplish with simple bricks.
From the large airplane to the pint-sized forklift, every inclusion feels purposeful and, needless to say, provides plenty of fun play opportunities for kids. And adults. Legos are for everyone!
While the airport structure itself is impressive, it’s the plane that really steals the show. Measuring only four studs across, the plane has great functionality – being able to store four minifigs and their luggage without needing to be disassembled. Extra details like the working garage and helicopter cargo doors add even more interactivity to this already great value set.
Set Number: 8485-1
Number of Pieces: 1079
Current New Value: $720
Current Used Value: $192
The Lego Group has always seen its brand as not just a mere toy, but also as a great tool to educate and encourage creativity. This point is perhaps best illustrated by the early Technic collection aimed at older kids, allowing them to use Legos to create moving vehicles (or creatures) with rudimentary robotics. Other companies have since created product lines with similar ideas, but no one does it like Lego.
Aside from the parts and instructions needed to build either a helicopter, hovercraft, or menacing robotic T-Rex (very reminiscent of Transformers Beast Wars), Control Centre II featured three electric motors and a control pad that allowed you to program movements, bringing the toy to life.
While bulkier and not as advanced as the later Mindstorms sets, Control Centre II was very impressive for its time. This is definitely one Lego collection that needs a re-release!
Now if only Lego would produce it.
Set Number: 6769-1
Number of Pieces: 687
Minifigs: Yes (10)
Current New Value: $841
Current Used Value: $232
Outlaws, beware – the cavalry has arrived, and they’ve got the ultimate Lego fort!
Part of the Western theme, this 1990s Lego set is unique for its log cabin walls and bricks. While not as grandiose as some of the castle sets, Fort Legoredo feels authentic to the time period it’s emulating, and it also comes with plenty of minifigs to fight over it.
This set has all kinds of neat details, from the trapdoor to the small chimney and bull horns on the roof. Compared to the other Western sets (outlaw hideouts and Wild West towns), this set is the most distinctive and a must-buy for anyone who wants to complete the theme.
Set Number: 6558-1
Number of Pieces: 185
Minifigs: Yes (3)
Current New Value: $140
Current Used Value: $44
Why is it that deep sea treasure is always guarded by ravenous sharks? Are they hoarders?
This nostalgic 90s Lego set gives off some strong Jaws vibes with the small boat, harpoon gun, diving cage, and, of course, the three terrifying shark figures.
The stone ruins and sword + gem-filled treasure chest are a nice touch, almost like the divers are exploring one of the earlier castle sets that have somehow sunk underwater. Hidden handles and cleverly positioned seaweed make it easy to keep the figures in mid-air, giving the impression they’re actually swimming underwater.
Set Number: 6093-1
Number of Pieces: 694
Minifigs: Yes (9)
Current New Value: $635
Current Used Value: $175
Long before Ninjago, Samurai-era Japan was already getting the Lego treatment with kits like 1998’s fantastic Ninja Fortress.
This set is a real behemoth, coming in at almost two feet tall and packed with detail from top to bottom! As you might expect from a ninja hideout, there are plenty of traps and pointy objects all over, not to mention a little jail to keep unlucky samurai. The fortress also has interlocking sections, so it can be easily mixed and matched to suit your style.
However, the coolest aspect of this classic 90s Lego set has to be the ninja hand glider. There was nothing like it in the lineup at the time, although the mounted samurai with his removable torso armor is awesome too.
Oh, and there’s a nice skeleton minifig thrown in for good measure.
Set Number: 7140-1
Number of Pieces: 266
Minifigs: Yes (4)
Current New Value: $284
Current Used Value: $67
Did you think we’d get through this list without bringing up Star Wars? Star Wars Lego is undoubtedly the Lego Group’s most successful product line, and it paved the way for countless crossovers with other movie franchises – with everything from Lord of The Rings to Harry Potter and more getting the Lego treatment. We even got some delightful 80s throwbacks with the recent Stranger Things sets!
Back in the late 90s, Star Wars was starting to heat up again thanks to the prequel trilogy. In the lead-up to the much-anticipated release of The Phantom Menace, Lego Group released several sets based on the original trilogy. Star Wars fans were delighted to finally get official Lego sets of classic vehicles they had been making home versions of for decades, and unsurprisingly, the X-Wing was the most popular.
While later Lego X-Wings would be much larger, this ship was still pretty hefty for its time, coming with 266 pieces. A neat detail is the inclusion of a lock hinge which made it easy to “lock S-foils in attack position” without them falling back down.
Gotta make sure those wings are secure when you’re doing barrel rolls! Also, if you think this Lego X-Wing is cool, you should also check out our blog covering other awesome Star Wars toys from the 90s!
Set Number: 4970-1
Number of Pieces: 168
Minifigs: Yes (1)
Current New Value: $217
Current Used Value: $101
The Rock Raiders were one of the best original themes in the expanded Lego universe, but it’s a shame they were so short-lived (it was discontinued in 2000). The theme focused on a group of space miners and explorers with futuristic industrial vehicles and equipment.
The Chrome Crusher is the star of the Rock Raiders vehicles – with every part of it perfectly encapsulating the theme of future space miners. The fact that the mining laser lights up is a nice touch, and the drill piece is striking and unique when compared to other sets of the time.
Lego Group had big plans for the Rock Raiders, with several comic books and even a video game being developed at one point. Unfortunately, the Rock Raiders ended up buried under the runaway success of Lego Star Wars, and the rest is history.
Still, we’re crossing our fingers that the Rock Raiders will come smashing out of a rockface and make their comeback someday!
The rarest Lego set is 4000001 Moulding Machines, of which only 68 were produced. The set was given as a gift to Lego Inside Tour attendees in 2011 and depicts the plastic injection machines used to create Lego bricks – talk about meta!
Over the decades, there have been so many incredible sets bearing the Lego logo that it’s difficult to say that one is the most iconic. 2017’s Ultimate Collector’s Series Millennium Falcon is certainly one of the more famous kits, if not for its immense size, then for its hefty price tag of $800 (the most expensive Lego set ever at the time).
Other Lego Star Wars vehicles like the AT-AT are also very popular. Outside of Star Wars, kits like the 1989 Batmobile are also considered iconic, getting screentime in the 2017’s Lego Batman Movie.
The price of Lego system sets from the 1990s varied depending on a variety of factors, but in most cases, the price per piece ranged between 10 to 20 cents. Brickset is a great resource for finding and comparing the RRP of all Lego products ever released.
Yes, they are! Since the Lego Group will no longer produce them, many of the sets featured on this list are worth thousands (unopened, that is). For example, as of writing, Skull’s Eye Schooner can sell for over $3000 sealed!
So, if you have any old Lego sets from the 1990s gathering dust at home, you could be sitting on some plastic gold!
Due to the popularity of Lego collecting (which has been increasingly normalized as a hobby for adults as well as kids), there are plenty of people buying, selling, and trading old Lego sets from the 1990s and other decades too! Sites like bricklink.com and brickowl.com are two popular marketplaces for enthusiasts to swap and sell entire sets or even individual parts and minifigs.
Lee is curator of nostalgia and a long-time collector of loveable junk. An 80s baby, 90s kid, he knows he had it good when it came to Saturday morning cartoons. Spends his life trying to recapture the dopamine hit of playing Game Boy for the first time and believes Beanie Babies will make a fortuitous comeback. Obsessed with everything (and anything) retro, he is your trusted guide to a world of 90s toys, games and collectables.
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