Yes, you can make tactile pixel art and voxel art with any size of LEGO bricks, so long as you creatively put things together. For an easier time creating a 3D or 2D model of any design, though, we have to say the Pix Brix works a whole lot better.
Billed as a “pixel art puzzle brick,” the toy uses just a single brick design: a cube with precise grooves on the edges that you use to connect multiple units. There’s also a stud in front and a slot for snapping onto a stud in the back, allowing you to stack multiple units similar to LEGOs. Basically, it has two connection options: one proprietary to the brick and one for compatibility with other construction toys. That’s right, you can use this with your LEGO model if the need to add an extra brick suddenly comes up.
The Pix Brix pieces can connect to each other using the grooves on the sides, top, and bottom, allowing you to line them up vertically or horizontally. Those grooves, by the way, can also be connected off center, so you can line one brick slightly to the left or right and lower or higher than the other, allowing you to line up color patterns in all sorts of different ways. To connect two bricks, simply line them up and slide one brick into the other. According to the outfit, the sliding action help the bricks foster a tighter and more stable connection, as you have to slide them apart to get them to separate.
Because they connect to each other through the sides, tops, and bottoms, you can use the bricks to make 2D pixel art without needing to use a baseplate like you would using regular LEGO bricks. That means, you can build a 2D lightsaber and carry it around everywhere you go, so you can pretend you’re Luke Skywalker from the Star Wars NES game for whatever joy it brings your way. The studs, on the other hand, allow the bricks to stack together, making it functional for making 3D pixel art (or voxel art, as some prefer to call them).
The Pix Brix comes in 32 different colors, so you can create plenty of different patterns and color combinations. If you’re not quite good at dreaming up pixelated art designs, you can hit up the outfit’s Pinterest page, where they have over 1,000 templates with detailed instructions to get you started on building various 2D and 3D pixel models. Since working with tiny cube bricks isn’t the most convenient and their sliding connectors aren’t the easiest to break apart, the outfit is selling what they call the PB Tool. Equipped with three different tips, the tool can be used to separate stacked layers two ways (either by gripping the top layer via the stud to pull off and using a wedge to pry off the top layer), pick up a brick by the stud for sliding onto another brick, or pushing a brick backwards to slide it off.
The Pix Brix is available now, priced at $4.95 for 500 pieces, $14.95 for 1500 pieces, and $69.99 for 6,000 pieces.