Just found out about http://www.pleygo.com. It is basically Netflix, but for LEGO building blocks. I'm really not sure what I think about this service. Not fully sure what the point of renting LEGO sets is. It seems a little counter to the greater idea of what LEGOs are all about.
The service works just like Netflix. You make a list of the LEGO sets you want and you get them one at a time after you send the last set back. They claim to sterilize the blocks in-between shipping them out, although I picture that would fade the painted on aspects or ruin the stickers that some of the pieces have.
Part of the fun of LEGOs is to collect the sets and reuse the pieces to build new things. Unless you plan it out ahead of time, no hope of doing that with pleygo. When I do mess with LEGOs, it is unplanned for the most part. I also like having a great deal of various pieces available when I want to mess around with them.
I also like to collect the mini figures and find that to be one of the main reason as to why I pick up the sets I go for. Interestingly enough it would seem you could actually do this with the pleygo deal, as you can loose up to ten pieces per set. I get the feeling that very often mini-figures are the pieces that go missing. In fact I could see the value of requesting sets with the rarer mini-figures and then conveniently misplacing them. This would also be a great way to get some of the more interesting pieces that are not found in any of the cheaper sets. Not sure if that would be worth the monthly fees, but for the free trail one could end up with a few nice pieces.
At $15, $25 or $37 a month (Depending on the size of sets you wish to rent) it seems to me it would be more fun to use that money on buying you own sets and building up a collection of them. Outside of getting access to huge sets that you might not otherwise ever get to play with, I cannot see any advantage to this program. And while I would love to build the Death Star set (Normally about $250), I can't see the fun in building it, which could take a week or more due to the size, and then sending it back. That would take a lot of the enjoyment out of it for me.
I guess it is partially the collector in me, but the idea of 'toy rental' for basic toys seems pointless to me. I do wonder just who this manner of service is marketed towards. It seems pricey to me for a family with limited income and rather extravagant if you just want to control your child's clutter.
But that could just be me.