There’s a peculiar subset of Lego fan that doesn’t spend their time building perfect replicas of iconic cars or elaborate brick-built model railroads. They instead create Great Ball Contraptions, or GBCs, for short: complicated contraptions that do nothing more than move tiny balls from area to another.
It sounds like a pointless hobby akin to creating Rube Goldberg machines, but in reality, the thousands of Great Ball Contraptions builds you’ll find online demonstrate some of the most original and complicated Lego creations ever assembled. Each GBC is an expression of its builder’s unique skills and interests, and the only thing more fascinating than watching one in action is watching hundreds of them lined up at a Lego convention creating a gigantic ball moving factory. Here’s some of our favorite GBCs, but be forewarned: It’s a deep rabbit hole you might not want to fall into.