Count Blacktron wrote:
Three things leave this set warming shelves across the worlds:
1. The minifigure included is nice, but available everywhere. He's about 2-5 years late, whether you consider the head or torso.
2. Yellow bricks don't draw us in as much as grey. The colors are very 1979, and we've become a bit more sophisticated since then.
3. Not a shield, accessory or part in there that's not elsewhere. If this had been a peasant pack with a pitchfork it would have sold million$.
With all due respect, I think the criticisms here are a bit unfair. While you're right that this set has little to offer an adult fan that is unique and the colour scheme may strike us as garish, I think these complaints effectively criticize the set for not doing something that the designers didn't seem to want to do. Allow me to explain.
Lego is, by and large, a children's toy, and this is even more true with this particular set those from the castle line. The recommended age listed on the box is 4-7
, and this is far below other sets like the Dwarves' Mine (7-14
) or the Troll's Mountain Fortress (7-14
). It's lower than the simpler sets as well, like the Knight's Catapult Defense (6-12
) or The Final Joust (5-12
). It's even below the age recommended for the battle packs (6+
). So the designers were clearly aiming for a particularly young audience.
With this in mind, the weaknesses you identified turn out to be strengths. First of all, the fact that the minifigure is generic means that it's simpler (and possibly slightly cheaper) to produce the set. After all, they don't need to set up a unique run just for this set. My suspicion is that children in the 4-7 range are just happy to have any
knight to play with, so this is a good place to scrimp a little.
Secondly, the garish colours are much more in keeping with the targeted age range. When trying to stimulate a young child’s imagination, bright colours are the way to go, and thus it’s a good thing that the yellow, lime green and red feature more prominently than the greys.
As for the lack of a pitchfork, well I won’t argue with you there.
So, I think that this is a great set that does exactly what it seems to have been meant to do. It’s got wide variety of generic bricks, and I’m sure that this encourages children to build whatever they dream up. There’s no need to be limited by the directions here. It’s got brightly coloured bricks, and if I was four or five I’d love that. Finally, I like the fact that it includes one minifigure in what is otherwise a random assortment of creative bricks. That way once I had built something, I’d have a little guy to drive it, live in it, fight over it, dance on it, or whatever I came up with. I love the execution of this set.
With all that being said, I wouldn’t buy it. My lack of a four or five year old bears a strong influence on my decision.