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Building kits inspired by movies, animated series, and video games are some of LEGO’s best-selling products. So, it’s no wonder that the best NINJAGO LEGO sets are in high demand considering the size of the animated series’ fan base.

LEGO has released over 450 sets within this theme since 2011 and more models inspired by the latest season of the TV series are on the way.

Such a wide range of options makes choosing the right NINJAGO LEGO set difficult, so in this article, I’ll supply you with information that will help you go through this process smoothly.

Bottom Line Up Front

The City Gardens 71741 is unquestionably the best NINJAGO set ever because of its modular design, high play value, and excellent Minifigure selection.

Building kits like Ninja Ultra Combo Mech 71765 or Lloyd’s Legendary Dragon 71766 are a better fit for young NINJAGO fans who don’t have advanced set-building skills.

See also: The best LEGO NINJAGO Minifigures

The History of the NINJAGO Theme

LEGO retired the short-lived Ninja subtheme of the Castles theme in 2000, and for ten years, the toymaker produced only a handful of sets that featured ninjas.

The production of the animated series inspired by the discontinued Ninja subtheme was announced in 2009, and the pilot episodes of the NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu premiered on January 14, 2011.

The first wave of NINJAGO sets was also released in January of the same year, followed by more models published in August. LEGO initially planned to discontinue this theme in 2013 and replace it with the Legends of Chima but ultimately abandoned this decision after briefly retiring the theme.

NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu became one of the brand’s best-selling themes shortly after its inception, and it remains one of its flagship product lines. Despite a relatively poor reception of The LEGO NINJAGO Movie, released in 2017, sets based on the film are some of the theme’s best models.

See also: The best Marvel LEGO sets

LEGO NINJAGO Subthemes and Minifigures



Most of the subthemes of the NINJAGO theme are based on the seasons of the animated series. So far, LEGO has introduced 17 subthemes inspired by NINJAGO special episodes, movies, and seasons.

The theme’s main subthemes are:

  • Rise of the Snakes ( PT.1 and PT.2)
  • Legacy of the Green Ninja
  • Rebooted
  • Tournament of Elements
  • Possession
  • Skybound
  • Day of the Departed (special episode)
  • Hands of Time
  • Sons of Garmadon
  • Hunted
  • Secrets of Forbidden Spinjitzu
  • Prime Empire
  • Master of the Mountain
  • The Island
  • Seabound

The Legacy and Core subthemes that reimagine building kits inspired by early seasons of the animated series, and The LEGO NINJAGO Movie were introduced in 2019 and 2021. The main characters of LEGO sets released in these subthemes are the same, although their costumes, vehicles, and weapons vary from season to season.

Here are the heroes you’ll find in most NINJAGO sets:

  • Master Wu
  • Nya
  • Jay
  • Cole
  • Zane
  • Sensei Garmadon
  • Kai
  • Lloyd Garmadon

Depending on the subtheme, these characters are accompanied by Skulkin, Serpentine, Stone Army, Nindroids, Anacondrai Cultist, Ghost Warrior, Sky Pirate, Vermilion, Dragon Hunter, and Sons of Garmadon Minifigures.

See also: The best LEGO Harry Potter Minifigures

Active Sets in LEGO NINJAGO Theme

LEGO NINJAGO NINJAGO City Gardens 71741 Building Kit

This theme has 43 active sets, mainly from Seabound, Core, Legacy, and The Island subthemes. Moreover, nearly all models in this theme were released in 2021 or early 2022, while most sets published in 2020 are retired.

Top tip: Taking the time to research different NINJAGO subthemes can help you reduce your options to a handful of building kits. 

Legacy Subtheme

Core Subtheme


The Island

This theme doesn’t have sets designed exclusively for adult fans, and even its biggest models are suitable for teenagers.

It’s also worth adding the Minifigure costumes and their weapons depend on the subtheme, so Minifigures from Legacy models are different from those in sets from the Seabound subtheme.

Downsides of Buying Discontinued NINJAGO Sets

LEGO NINJAGO The Keepers' Village 71747 Building Kit

The average lifespan of a LEGO NINJAGO set is 13 months. Theme’s active sets are based on the series’ two most recent seasons, and each new wave replaces models from the year before. So, for instance, most NINJAGO models published in 2020 were retired before the 2022 models were released.

The discontinued models don’t disappear from the market immediately, and they remain available online or in LEGO stores until they run out of stock. However, more than 400 NINJAGO sets are no longer in production.

Top tip: Obtaining spare pieces for discontinued NINJAGO sets is difficult and expensive, so ensuring that the retired model you want to get has all pieces can save you a lot of time and money. 

Amazon, Walmart, and similar eCommerce platforms offer a wide range of retired NINJAGO sets, and you can use them to find models like Fire Temple 2507 or NINJAGO Battle Arena 2520 based on the pilot episodes of the NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu.

However, you should check the set’s condition and the retailer’s reliability before you decide to purchase it.

New Models in the NINJAGO Theme

LEGO will introduce the Crystalized subtheme titled after the 15th season of the NINJAGO series to this theme in June 2022. So far, the toymaker confirmed the release of the following models in June and August:

Although they’re listed on the LEGO website, these sets aren’t available for pre-order, but this option might become available for some models a few weeks before their launch date. Whether or not LEGO plans to add more sets to this subtheme before the end of the year is currently unclear.

See also: LEGO leaks and rumors

Piece Counts of LEGO NINJAGO Sets

LEGO NINJAGO Ninjago City 70620 (4867 Pieces)

NINJAGO building kits usually have low piece counts since most models LEGO released within this theme have fewer than 1,000 pieces. Only five active sets have more than 1,000 pieces, while the City Gardens 71741 is the theme’s only model with more than 2,000 pieces.

This theme currently offers nine models with 500 to 1,000 pieces, and six more sets in this piece count range will hit the market in the next few months. The theme also offers a versatile selection of models with 250 to 500 pieces, while six of the theme’s sets have fewer than a hundred pieces.

Top tip: The set’s piece count indicates how complex its assembly process is, so opting for a low piece count model is a good idea if you don’t have previous set-building experience. 

Keep in mind that retired models with high piece counts like NINJAGO City 70620 or Temple of Airjitzu 70751 can cost more than $500.

Value and Price Ranges

The biggest active LEGO NINJAGO set has the same price as the biggest LEGO Marvel model. The cost of a single piece in the City Gardens 71741 set is just 53 cents, which makes it one of the most affordable models in its piece count range.

This set is also the theme’s only model that costs more than $200, while a handful of active NINJAGO sets cost more than $100. More than half of the models in this theme cost less than $50, so finding an affordable building kit won’t take much effort.

Top tip: Use an online Price-per-Piece ratio online calculator to determine if the LEGO set you’re interested in has a reasonable price. 

The value of these sets rapidly increases after their exit date, so 2018 and 2019 models like Dieselnaut 70654 or Castle of the Forsaken Emperor 70678 already cost more than most active models even though they have similar piece counts.

The Key Factors to Consider while Choosing a LEGO NINJAGO Set

  • Set’s release date and subtheme
  • Piece count and the number of Minifigures
  • The model’s compatibility with other LEGO NINJAGO sets
  • Building kit’s price range and Price-per-Piece ratio
  • The complexity of the construction process and your set-building skills

The Advantages of LEGO NINJAGO Sets

LEGO NINJAGO Legacy Boulder Blaster 71736

A Broad Range of Models

This LEGO theme has over forty active sets inspired by recent seasons of the NINJAGO series and classic sets based on the TV show’s early seasons and The LEGO NINJAGO Movie.

What’s more, LEGO will introduce a new NINJAGO subtheme during the summer of 2022, further extending the range of options fans of this animated series have at their disposal.

Simple Construction Process

These sets aren’t designed exclusively for adult LEGO fans, and building them doesn’t require previous experience. Most models in this theme have fewer than 1,000 pieces, and most fans don’t need more than a few hours to construct them.

Excellent Compatibility within a Subtheme

All building kits released within a NINJAGO subtheme are compatible with each other, and combining two or more sets increases their play value.

Suitable for Inexperienced LEGO Builders

More than thirty active sets in the NINJAGO theme are designed for children aged six or older, while none of the theme’s models are made exclusively for adult LEGO fans.

Affordable Prices

LEGO NINJAGO sets are available in all price ranges, and you can opt for a model that costs $10 or $300. The value of these building kits increases over time, so purchasing an active model that costs around $100 can become a profitable investment in a couple of years.

The Disadvantages of LEGO NINJAGO Sets

Some Models have Low Play Value

The playability of some NINJAGO sets is limited by a poor selection of accessories and rudimentary functions of the toys they contain.

Short Lifespan

LEGO retires most NINJAGO sets after 13 months, which means their average lifespan is around six months shorter than the lifespans of models from other themes.

Selection Criteria

LEGO NINJAGO Jungle Dragon 71746 Building Kit

NINJAGO’s product line includes over 450 models published between 2011 and 2022. Although most of these models are no longer available in LEGO stores, you can still find them online at LEGO marketplaces.

Determining which NINJAGO sets have the most to offer wasn’t easy, as there are so many models to consider. I utilized strict selection criteria to shortlist some of the theme’s best building kits, so here are some of the key parameters I used during this process.

  • Model’s release date – All NINJAGO models in this article are still in production, as I removed all retired sets from consideration.
  • Price range – My aim was to create an overview of NINJAGO building kits suitable for all budgets. Hence, the final selection includes models that cost more than $100 or less than $20.

See also: The best LEGO sets under $50


1. City Gardens 71741

City Gardens 71741

  • Piece count: 5,685
  • Age group: 14+
  • Price range: $$$$$

The high piece count isn’t the only reason why the City Gardens 71741 is widely accepted as the best NINJAGO set. The building kit’s modular structure allows you to stack rooms or use them as independent play units.

Moreover, each room is equipped with a variety of accessories that enable builders to recreate scenes from The LEGO NINJAGO Movie. This set has 22 Minifigures, including the collectible Golden Wu Minifigure created for the 10th anniversary of the NINJAGO theme.

2. Temple of the Endless Sea 71755

Temple of the Endless Sea 71755

  • Piece count: 1,060
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$$$

Despite having a modest piece count, the Temple of the Endless Sea 71755 building kit offers a broad spectrum of play options. The temple has a prison, laboratory, the chained serpent Wojira and two display amulet sections builders can combine freely.

A miniature submarine toy that allows kids to go on daring adventures is also included in the set. Each of the seven Minifigures is armed with different weapons, but despite this, the set has a poor selection of accessories.

3. Hydro Bounty 71756

Hydro Bounty 71756

  • Piece count: 1,159
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$$$

As the biggest model LEGO published in the Seabound subtheme, the Hydro Bounty 71756 is an excellent choice for fans searching for an entertaining playset or collectors who’d like to extend their collections of NINJAGO sets.

The 23-inch long Hydro Bounty toy has foldable wings, an opening cockpit with room for a single Minifigure, and a pair of spring-loaded shooters. Its front end contains a detachable mech toy, while its central section has storage space for two mini-submarines.

This set has ten Minifigures, including unique Seabound Nya and Wu Bot Minifigures.

4. Ninja Ultra Combo Mech 71765

Ninja Ultra Combo Mech 71765

  • Piece count: 1,104
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$$

The Ninja Ultra Combo Mech 71765 is one of LEGO’s most impressive models released within the NINJAGO Core subtheme. The mech toy has an easily detachable jet, car, tank, and smaller mech elements that function as independent toys.

The set comes with the sword accessory for the mech figure and various other weapons for the Zane, Jay, Kai, and Cole Minifigures. Besides offering high play value, the Ninja Ultra Combo Mech is also a beautiful display model.

5. Ninja Dojo Temple 71767

Ninja Dojo Temple 71767

  • Piece count: 1,394
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $$$

As a somewhat eclectic model, the Ninja Dojo Temple 71767 has references to The LEGO NINJAGO Movie and different episodes of the animated series. The temple model resembles the Temple of Fortitude featured in the retired NINJAGO City 70620 set.

Wu’s tearoom or Pixal’s workshop are some of the rooms equipped with numerous accessories kids can explore while developing action-packed play scenarios. Boa Destructor and Cobra Mechanic come with a rammer vehicle, while NINJAGO heroes are armed with swords in different colors.

6. Ultra Sonic Raider 71739

Ultra Sonic Raider 71739

  • Piece count: 725
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$

Like all NINJAGO sets from the Legacy subtheme, the Ultra Sonic Raider 71739 model is inspired by the early seasons of the animated series.

Zane Legacy, Jay, Cole, Kai, and Zane Minifigures have costumes based on their appearance in the first season of the series, and they fight against Mezmo and Rattla Snake Soldiers.

The 4-in-1 Sonic Raider toy features a jet with a pair of spring-loaded shooters, two all-terrain vehicles, and a motorcycle. Each of these toys has a single Minifigure cockpit.

7. Lloyd’s Legendary Dragon 71766

Lloyd's Legendary Dragon 71766

  • Piece count: 747
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $$

The recently released Lloyd’s Legendary Dragon 71766 is one of the biggest active LEGO sets that features a dragon toy. Set’s four Minifigures are equipped with ballista shooters, swords, jetpacks, spears, and dynamite sticks that allow kids to stage epic battles between good and evil.

The dragon toy has a flexible tail and posable legs, arms, and head. Its jaw can snap at enemies, and its wings can move up and down to simulate the attack mode. Optionally, kids can add a saddle to the dragon’s back.

8. Catamaran Sea Battle 71748

Catamaran Sea Battle 71748

  • Piece count: 780
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$

The Catamaran Sea Battle 71748 is one of four LEGO sets based on the NINJAGO: The Island mini-series that premiered in 2021. The Keeper’s battle catamaran is composed of three small boats that feature a prison cell for the Kay, Jay, and Zane Minifigures and a couple of spring-loaded shooters.

The ninja’s catamaran also has two spring-loaded shooters, and it can switch between speed and attack modes. The Thunder Keeper, Rumble Keeper, and Chief Mammatus Minifigures enable builders to recreate battle scenes from this mini-series.

9. Zane’s Titan Mech Battle 71738

Zane's Titan Mech Battle 71738

  • Piece count: 840
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$

The price of a single piece in the Zane’s Titan Mech Battle 71738 set is just 7 cents, which makes it one of the theme’s most affordable models.

This building kit was released within the NINJAGO Legacy subtheme. All of its Minifigures, including the collectible golden Jay Legacy Minifigure, are inspired by the fourth season of the NINJAGO series.

The ten-inch tall mech toy is posable, and it has two spring-loaded shooters on its shoulders. It has a chainsaw in its left hand and a rotating blade in its right hand.

10. Water Dragon 71754

Water Dragon 71754

  • Piece count: 737
  • Age group: 9+
  • Price range: $$

The Water Dragon 71754 is the only dragon-themed set in the NINJAGO Seabound subtheme. Most of the model’s play value comes from the posable dragon toy with moving wings, tail, head, and legs.

This set has five Minifigures, but none are unique because they appear in several NINJAGO Seabound building kits. The submarine toy has an opening cockpit with room for one Minifigure, but it lacks spring-loaded shooters.

The wave amulet pedestal element is purely decorative, and it doesn’t provide much play value.

11. The Keeper’s Village 71747

The Keeper's Village 71747

  • Piece count: 632
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $$

Building The Keeper’s Village 71747 set doesn’t require previous experience, and even children who never owned a LEGO set before can assemble it in a few hours. The jungle lair’s dragon head segment has a hidden prison cell, a throne, several stud shooters, and a tree trap.

The pillar element is composed of three figures with adjustable arms and swords in each hand. Besides Kai, Cole, and Jay, this set also features Thunder Keeper and Chief Mammatus Minifigures.

12. Fire Dragon Attack 71753

Fire Dragon Attack 71753

  • Piece count: 563
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $$

This NINJAGO Legacy set is inspired by the first season of the NINJAGO: Masters of Spinjitzu series. The Fire Dragon Attack 71753 is a simple building kit with no other elements except the dragon toy and four Minifigures.

The Fire Dragon has a flexible tail with a pair of katana swords at the end, while its adjustable arms and legs have sharp claws. The collectible golden Nya Minifigure isn’t exclusive to this set. Kia, Zane, and Skulkin Minifigures also appear in other NINJAGO sets.

13. Final Flight of Destiny’s Bounty 71749

Final Flight of Destiny's Bounty 71749

  • Piece count: 147
  • Age group: 4+
  • Price range: $

A NINJAGO Legacy model like the Final Flight of Destiny’s Bounty 71749 can help preschoolers develop set-building skills. This model comes with a Starter Brick that makes the assembly process easier and a detailed instructions booklet that guides kids through each step of the build.

Despite modest dimensions, the ship toy has a variety of fun features like rotating boosters, a foil sail, an easily detachable jet ski toy, and an anchor. The miniature dragon figure has flapping wings and a saddle for ninja Minifigures.

14. X-1 Ninja Charger 71737

X-1 Ninja Charger 71737

  • Piece count: 599
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $$

Young fans of LEGO vehicles will love playing with the X-1 Ninja Charger 71737 set based on the third season of the NINJAGO series.

The Cole Legacy golden Minifigure, Nindroid Warrior, and Nindroid Minifigures are exclusive to this set, while the versions Kai and Jay Minifigures appear in several other NINJAGO models.

The X-1 Charger has two stud shooters in its rear sections and a single-Minifigure cabin. The toy’s front section opens with a push of a button to reveal a bike with a seat for a Minifigure.

15. Jungle Dragon 71746

Jungle Dragon 71746

  • Piece count: 506
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $

Even though it doesn’t offer plenty of play value, the Jungle Dragon 71746 is still a fun set with a beautiful dragon toy. All four Minifigures are based on the characters from the NINJAGO: The Island mini-series and the set includes just two ninja heroes.

Each of the dragon’s posable wings has three swords. The toy’s tail, arms, legs, and head are easily adjustable, allowing you to change its pose effortlessly. The surfboard has a sail and two stud shooters.

16. Boulder Blaster 71736

Boulder Blaster 71736

  • Piece count: 449
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $

LEGO released the first version of this set in 2015. The Boulder Blaster 71736 has 200 more pieces than its predecessor, and it comes with the golden Kai Legacy Minifigure. The set also features Cole, Lloyd, and Eyezor Minifigures armed with swords and axes.

The Boulder Blaster’s most distinctive features are the rotating eight-stud shooter, opening cockpit, and the landing gear that keeps the toy stable. The small prison element has fun interactive features that enable kids to free one of the ninjas by firing at it with the aircraft.

17. Ninja Sub Speeder 71752

Ninja Sub Speeder 71752

  • Piece count: 356
  • Age group: 8+
  • Price range: $

Despite being one of the smallest NINJAGO Seabound models, the Ninja Sub Speeder 71752 offers excellent value for money. The 2-in-1 vehicle has car and submarine modes, and it contains a detachable drone that allows kids to stage air attacks on enemies.

Its opening cockpit with room for and Minifigure and two frontally positioned stud-shooters also add to the set’s playability. Jay, Cole, and two Maaray Guard Minifigures aren’t exclusive to this set.

18. Ninja Training Center 71764

Ninja Training Center 71764

  • Piece count: 524
  • Age group: 7+
  • Price range: $$

Each element of the Ninja Training Center 71764 set encourages active play and provides children with a variety of play options. The spinning toy, a slide with a tree, or the mech dummy are some of the training center’s components that can keep children occupied for hours.

Zane and Jay are the only ninja heroes in this set, and they can test their skills in battles against the Boa Destructor. The set’s elements are sturdy, small, and easily portable.

19. Tournament of Elements 71735

Tournament of Elements 71735

  • Piece count: 283
  • Age group: 6+
  • Price range: $

Titled after the fourth season of the animated series, the Tournament of Elements 71735 enables kids to recreate classic NINJAGO scenes. The temple model has two levels that feature rotating weapons, a jade blade collection, and a battle platform.

Eyezor, Bolobo, Gravis, and Jacob are the season four NINJAGO characters included in this set. The building kit has just three ninja Minifigures armed with a sword, nunchucks, and a scythe.

20. Lloyd’s Hydro Mech 71750

Lloyd's Hydro Mech 71750

  • Piece count: 228
  • Age group: 7+
  • Price range: $

The Lloyd’s Hydro Mech 71750 is one of the best available options if you’re looking for an affordable NINJAGO set that is easy to build. The posable mech has a sword in one hand and a hydraulic claw in the other. The Scuba Lloyd Minifigure fits inside the toy’s cockpit.

This Minifigure has a diving mask, an air tank, flippers, and a sword, while the Maaray Guard Minifigure doesn’t have any unique characteristics.

Frequently Asked Questions about LEGO NINJAGO Sets

Question: Is LEGO Planning to Retire the NINJAGO Theme?

Answer: The brand won’t retire this theme as long as the animated series is still on the air.

Question: What is the Difference between NINJAGO Legacy and Core Subthemes?

Answer: Both subthemes offer sets based on classic NINJAGO episodes, but models published within the Core subtheme are made for novice builders.

Question: Are NINJAGO Sets from Different Subthemes Compatible?

Answer: Yes, they are, but combining them can be difficult because they’re based on different NINJAGO seasons.

Question: What is the Most Valuable LEGO NINJAGO Minifigure?

Answer: The market value of the 2014 Overlord Minifigure is a bit over $50, which makes it the most valuable LEGO NINJAGO Minifigure.

Final Thoughts

The arrival of the highly anticipated Crystalized NINJAGO subtheme will extend an already impressive selection of playsets this theme offers. However, this might mean that some of the Seabound models won’t stay in production for long.

I recommend getting the City Gardens 71741 if you’d like to get a NINJAGO set you can play with or display in your home.

The theme’s biggest and most expensive model may not fit all budgets, so you should consider sets like Ninja Ultra Combo Mech 71765 or Boulder Blaster 71736 if you’re searching for an affordable NINJAGO model that is easy to build.

Please go through our guide to the best LEGO Jurassic Park sets if you’d like to learn more about LEGO building kits inspired by this movie franchise.

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