I noticed there are 4 different types of instruction manuals (at least for large sets):
- Type I: Similar piece colors are not very distinguishable (especially Dark Gray and Black). Some building steps could be clearer (for example, adding arrows or changing the point of view). Similar-looking pieces are sorted in the same bag. Bags are not numbered.
- Type II: Same as Type I but with numbered bags.
- Type III: The piece colors are a lot closer to the actual pieces and are easily recognizable (Black has even a white outline). All building steps are better described. Pieces are better sorted in the bags. Bags are numbered.
- Type IV: Same as Type III but with the pieces to be added in a given step outlined in yellow or red.
One could think of a type to be an improvement over the previous one, and when a new type is released, the old one wouldn't be used anymore. But that's not the case.
Here are some sets with their corresponding type:
- Mobile Crane (8421) released on 24-Oct-07 is of Type II.
- Death Star (10188) released on 21-Jun-08 is of Type I.
- Pet Shop (10218) released on 12-May-11 is of Type II.
- Town Hall (10224) released on 03-Mar-12 is of Type IV.
- Palace Cinema (10232) released on 01-Mar-13 is of Type III.
- Mobile Crane MK II (42009) released on 27-Jul-13 is of Type II.
- Maersk Line Triple-E (10241) released on 01-Jan-14 is of Type IV.
- Parisian Restaurant (10243) released on 01-Jan-14 is of Type III.
Do you know why the manual types are not in strict chronological order?