What is the Difference Between Mega Bloks and Duplos? (Which Should You Buy?)

Last updated on July 7th, 2024

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Last updated on July 7th, 2024

Are you at a crossroads, wondering which building toy will unleash your child’s inner architect- Mega Bloks or Duplos? Do the countless opinions and comparisons by friends and online articles rattle your brain like a frantic maraca?

Never fear, my fellow confused crusader, for you shall be enlightened!

In this article, we will dissect the great Mega Bloks vs. Duplos debate with vivacity and gusto, leaving no stone unturned! Prepare yourself for a deep dive into the obscure histories, quality concerns, magnificent themes, and playsets these two colossal titans of the building block industry offer.

Also, brace yourself for a healthy dose of eco-conscious analysis and the final verdict that may leave you gasping in awe (or perhaps slightly amused, at the very least).

So without further ado, let us embark on this journey of invaluable discoveries that will ultimately lead you to the building toy Holy Grail and banish your indecision to the farthest depths of the universe!

Mega Bloks & Duplos: Pros & Cons

Mega Bloks and Duplos are two popular building block brands that offer engaging and creative play experiences for young children. Both brands have their unique features and qualities that make them appealing to kids and parents alike.

Before diving into the detailed pros and cons, let’s explore the key characteristics of each brand.

Mega Bloks are known for their affordability and a wide range of themes and sets available. They come in smaller sizes, allowing children to create intricate designs and structures.

Mega Bloks are compatible with other building block systems, providing flexibility in expanding the play possibilities. On the other hand, they may not offer the same level of precision and interlocking as LEGO Duplo, and some users have reported that the blocks may not always hold together tightly.

Duplos, part of the LEGO family, offer larger blocks that are easier for young children to handle. They are compatible with the LEGO system, allowing for seamless integration with other LEGO sets as children progress in their building skills.

Duplos are known for their durability and a wide range of themes, including popular licensed themes like Disney and Marvel. However, Duplos can be more expensive compared to Mega Bloks, and the larger block size may limit the intricacy of creations.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of each brand. The following tables summarize the key advantages and disadvantages of Mega Bloks and Duplos, providing valuable insights to help you make an informed choice for your child’s playtime enjoyment.

Mega Bloks Pros & Cons

More affordable compared to LEGO DuploLess precise and interlocking compared to LEGO Duplo
Wide range of themes and sets availableLimited compatibility with other building block systems
Smaller size allows for intricate creationsBlocks may not always hold together tightly
Compatible with other building block setsLower quality compared to LEGO Duplo
Variety of colors and shapes to stimulate creativityLimited range of themes and sets compared to LEGO Duplo
Offers sets with popular licensed themesMay not stick together as securely for more complex structures
Suitable for younger children with larger handsNot as widely recognized or popular as LEGO Duplo
Easy to clean and storeSome sets may have smaller pieces that can pose a choking hazard
Durable and sturdy constructionMay require extra care to ensure longevity and prevent breakage
Can be used for both indoor and outdoor playInstruction manuals may not be as detailed or comprehensive

Duplos Pros & Cons

Larger size for easier handling by young childrenMore expensive compared to Mega Bloks
Compatible with the LEGO systemLimited compatibility with other building block systems
Durable and long-lasting constructionLimited range of themes and sets compared to LEGO system
Offers a wide range of themesBlocks may be too large and bulky for more intricate creations
Provides a good balance of simplicity and complexityLess variety in colors and shapes compared to Mega Bloks
Comes with larger and more detailed piecesLimited availability of licensed themes and characters
Easy to clean and storeMay require additional storage space due to larger block size
Recognized and trusted brand with a long historySome sets may have repetitive pieces, limiting creativity
Well-designed and easy-to-follow instruction manualsMay not be as appealing to older children or adults
Offers sets suitable for different age ranges and skill levelsCan be overwhelming for younger children due to larger size and complexity

A Brief History of Mega Bloks and Duplos

Mega Bloks Origins: The New Kid on the Block

It wasn’t until 1984 that Mega Bloks clawed its way into existence under the guiding hands of Victor Bertrand Sr. and his family. As part of the toy company MEGA (named after a good ol’ Greek word meaning “big” or “great”), their prime goal was to create joy-inducing plastic building blocks – an idea that was anything but new.

However, this Canadian-born brainchild had its sights set on a fierce rivalry with the grand LEGO empire.

Tensions simmered in 1991 when MEGA sued LEGO over a patent issue, sparking a fiery legal battle that lasted years. Ultimately, this simply solidified the existence of two separate building toy kingdoms.

Since then, MEGA has been acquired by Mattel, adding force behind the Mega Bloks brand.

Duplos Rise: LEGO’s Parry to MEGA’s Thrust

On the other hand, Duplos – those chunky, lovable double-sized LEGO blocks that migrated from the fabled lands of Denmark – had the audacity to show up a whole decade before Mega Bloks. Introduced by the LEGO Group in 1969, they were aimed at the budding minds of toddlers, offering safer, more graspable fun.

The name “Duplo” is derived from the Latin word “duplus,” meaning “double.” Thanks to their widespread success, they have comfortably settled into the LEGO family.

Timelines Go Head-to-Head

There you have it – Duplos’ humble beginnings, slightly pre-date Mega Bloks’ inception. Does this edge in experience give them the upper hand?

Well, keep your socks on because we’re about to get down to the nitty-gritty!

Understanding the Basics: Size and Compatibility

Sizing Up the Competition

Mega Bloks and Duplos may be frequently mistaken as identical twins, but there are subtle differences that set them apart. Duplos are slightly chunkier, providing a better grip for tiny toddler hands, while Mega Bloks are more streamlined in design.

This battle of the bulge leaves the scales slightly tilted in Duplos’ favor for a younger crowd, but older kids may not mind the sleeker constitution of Mega Bloks.

Connect the Dots: Compatibility Matters

In the realm of building toys, compatibility is as important as the ingredients in a legendary witch’s potion. Although Duplos easily connect with regular LEGO bricks, Mega Bloks, unfortunately, can’t always boast the same interoperability.

Initially designed as an alternative to LEGOs, Mega Bloks do connect with some LEGO pieces, but inconsistencies can leave you frustrated enough to swear like a sailor.

Why Size and Compatibility Counts

As parents and guardians, we must choose wisely when selecting building toys for our little master builders.

Creating a world of limitless possibilities comes down to the ease at which these tiny plastic wonders connect, interchange, and transform. The more the merrier, right?

The Battle of the Brands: Mega Bloks vs. Duplos

Familiar Faces: Brand Recognition

The legendary status of LEGO is hard to challenge, as the brand has firmly entrenched itself in our hearts, one nostalgic brick at a time. Thus, Duplo is bolstered by its mighty LEGO origin, making it a recognizable and adored member of the European heritage.

Mega Bloks stand somewhat in the shadow of its bulky brother, often considered an off-brand cousin who shows up to family reunions uninvited.

However, it is essential not to underestimate Mega Bloks’ perseverance, as the company has claimed its territory in the toy industry.

Parenting 101: Mattel vs. LEGO Group

Mega Bloks derives its power from its parent company, Mattel (of Barbie and Hot Wheels fame). The Mattel brand carries know-how, old-fashioned resilience, and deep pockets that have nurtured this plucky competitor.

However, there are murmurs of scattered recalls and questionable ethical practices that somewhat sully Mattel’s reputation.

The LEGO Group, in contrast, has a jaw-dropping 80+ years of toy-making genius, making them toys’ Albus Dumbledore. With numerous awards and an almost cult-like following, the LEGO Group has dominated the industry, instilling a sense of reliability and timelessness unparalleled by its competitors.

Strategy Showdown: Marketing Mayhem

It’s undeniable that both Mega Bloks and Duplos utilize licensing and collaborations with popular franchises to boost their products’ appeal. Yet, LEGO (and, by extension, Duplo) has cornered the market, acquiring movie, television, and gaming series rights like a tireless, strategic Pokémaster.

Due to Duplos’ immense popularity, they get first dibs, leaving Mega Bloks to scrounge for the remaining leftovers like a famished hyena.

Material and Quality Comparisons

Construction Materials: What Are They Made Of?

At first glance, both Mega Bloks and Duplos appear like plastic peas in a pod. However, the devil is in the details.

Mega Bloks are fashioned with High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), while Duplos utilize Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) plastic. The main difference – HDPE is a softer, recyclable plastic prone to warping, while ABS is a more rigid, but difficult-to-recycle material with a touch of gloss.

Good looks may be deceptive, though, as ABS bricks tend to hold together more securely than their HDPE rivals.

Battle-Tested: Durability and Quality

The smell of competition in this intense face-off between Duplos and Mega Bloks is as thick as a delicious French onion soup. When it comes to durability and quality, bitter rivalries are forged.

Though our sleek Mega Bloks contenders show steely determination, they fall slightly short of reaching the golden Duplo standard.

The chunkier Duplos boast precisely engineered plastic wonders that are virtually kid-resistant, while Mega Bloks can lose their grip after prolonged use, like a gripless koala on an oiled eucalyptus branch.

Rumble in the (Plastic) Jungle: Safety Concerns

For the discerning guardian of our wee, fragile humans, safety is of utmost importance. There are some whispers and murmurs of Mega Bloks quality inconsistencies and recalls due to minuscule choking hazards.

Although it’s important to remember that freak toy accidents can occur anywhere, Duplos continue to reign supreme with fewer recalls under their shiny, plastic belt.

Theme Variety and Playsets Offered

A Tale of Two Galaxies: Mega Bloks and Duplos Themes

Theme variety is the buttery icing atop the cosmic cake of chaotic excitement when it comes to building toys. Mega Bloks and Duplos cater to different whims and fancies.

Mega Bloks possess an affinity for the action-packed, explosive licenses like Halo, Call of Duty, Pokémon, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

In contrast, Duplos tend to dance in a realm of gentler, family-friendly themes like Disney, Jurassic World, and superheroes, encouraging creativity, imaginative play, and highly-demanded storytelling.

Wonders of the World: Playset Pandemonium

Alas, my dear friends, the time has come to delve into the heart-pounding realm of Playsets. These pre-designed worlds of fantasy help our precious children craft their own masterpieces while having their fragile, developing minds gently guided.

Mega Bloks stomp into the arena with a wide array of thrilling, action-oriented sets that may leave your blood pounding through your veins. Yet, Duplos, ever-resilient and crafty, beckon with the allure of familiarity and comfort.

They may not make your heartbeat soar like an overly caffeinated bumblebee, but they evoke a warm, comforting embrace that will melt even the iciest of hearts.

In this fierce showdown, your final choice ultimately depends on your child’s tastes and age group.

Age Suitability and Skill Development

The Great Age Race: Recommendations and Development

As loving caregivers, we only want the very best for our young ones. Ensuring that our kids thrive is the ultimate goal. So, where do Mega Bloks and Duplos place on this grand scale of age-appropriate development?

Mega Bloks tout their colorful wares for the tiny tots aged 1-5, while Duplos claim their kingdom caters to children aged 1.5-5.

Both brands focus on the critical early years, aiding in fine motor skill development and imaginative play.

But what of the school of life’s other critical lessons? Duplos incorporate mathematics, language, and storytelling through their sets, nurturing budding intellects like a mother bird feeding her young.

And while Mega Bloks present opportunities for similarity, their action-focused themes emphasize adrenaline-infused excitement and creativity more than gentle learning.

Who Takes Home the Gold in Skill Development?

While the crowd holds its collective breath, the judges have reached a consensus. Though valiantly contested, Duplos emerge victorious in the realm of skill development.

Credits go to Duplos for their wholesome, well-rounded approach that shines with versatile and invincible might.

Accessibility and Affordability

The Price Is Right (Or Is It?): Comparing Costs

In this monumental showdown, it’s time for the rubber to meet the road in the arena of affordability. Tensions climb to an all-time high, as Mega Bloks and Duplos face off in a brutal battle of value!

Mega Bloks emerge victorious from this bloody fray of budget-consciousness, showcasing pieces typically at a lower price point.

Duplos, hindered by LEGO’s well-maintained reputation and quality, may dig a deeper trench in your wallet. Ultimately, the choice between the two will depend on your financial situation and the importance placed on quality and resale value.

The Thrill of the Hunt: Availability

Locating these plastic jewels may feel as if embarking on a great quest, yet in reality, both Mega Bloks and Duplos are readily available in most toy stores, online shopping havens, and even supermarkets teeming with life.

Seeking either brand is no more complex than locating a needle in a single haystack. Two haystacks may be pushing it.

Eco-friendliness and Sustainability

Kissin’ Mother Earth’s Toes: Environmental Considerations

In the modern age of environmental awareness, it’s high time we start asking the big questions about our building blocks. As our champions dance about in the plastic ring, we might wonder, “Which better heeds Mother Nature’s gentle whispers?”

Mega Bloks, carved from friendly recyclable plastic, giggle with eco-glee at their Duplo rivals, boasting their sustainability. LEGO, however, has started taking strides in developing plant-based bioplastics, aiming to manufacture sustainable blocks by 2030.

It’s a hearty snail’s race of change, but change is a force not to be disregarded.

Weighing the Pros and Cons: Mega Bloks vs. Duplos

So, who will rise like a fiery phoenix in the arena of environmental activism? While Mega Bloks may possess a slight edge at present, the LEGO Group is making meaningful strides towards their greener future.

Thus, it’s a clash with no clear winner – a battle of titans that we should eagerly applaud and encourage from the sidelines.

What is the Difference Between Mega Bloks and Duplos? (Which Should You Buy?)

Considering the many factors behind this great question, one ultimate decision still looms. What is the real difference between Mega Bloks and Duplos, and which should you swipe off the shelf like a toy-hungry vulture?

Mega Bloks provide a budget-friendly, eco-conscious option, focusing on the adrenaline-infused world of action and adventure. Though slightly shaky in the department of quality, these blocks offer your child an affordable journey into the realm of creation.

Duplos, crafted by the legendary LEGO Group, stand tall with an unmatched reputation, historical prowess, and time-tested quality. Though their eco-efforts may lag, we witness a brand striving to do better.

Boasting a well-rounded, intellectually-stimulating play experience, the higher price tag may very well be worth it.

Ultimately, the decision lies in individual preferences and factors unique to each child. We can safely say, though, that no matter which brand you choose, the joy of building and creating shall forever reign supreme in the hallowed halls of childhood memories!

So weigh your priorities, guardians of tiny humans, and let your children’s imaginations soar like pollen-drunk bumblebees in the fields of youth.


In conclusion, Duplos and Mega Bloks both have their advantages and drawbacks. Duplos, with their strong ties to the revered LEGO Group, offer better quality, a higher focus on intellectual development, and a sense of familiarity.

Mega Bloks present a budget-friendly, action-oriented alternative with a slightly more eco-conscious background.

Now equipped with unparalleled knowledge of these great building toy rivals, we encourage you to make an informed decision and marvel as your budding builder’s creativity blossoms. And remember, dear reader, share your experiences and thoughts on this great debate in the comments section below!

Last updated on July 7th, 2024

Matthew R

Hi, My name is Matt and I am all about toys! When trying to find accurate information online about toys I was finding it difficult so I decided to make this site.

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