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Review: 6097 Night Lord's Castle


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#1 metalandi

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 08:29 PM

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Today i'm gonna review the bigger of the 2 castles from the fright knigh theme. I got this one last week at a pretty fair prive at ebay, new and still sealed. I love opening boxes that had been lying arounf for years and being the first to build an old set. :laugh: Since i know this castle theme is not liked so much by the general public, i'll try here and change their minds, cause i really think this is a great set. This time i have to say my pictures turned out pretty amazing, even if i am still using just my cellphone cam, but i'm really pleased now with the quality. Here we go!

Set Nr.: 6097
Name: Night Lord's Castle
Number of minifigs: 7
Number of pieces: 598
Release Year: 1997



Let's start with a few box & instructions pictures:

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The inside od the box, with a few alternate models:

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The back, with another possibility how to assemble the 3 main parts:

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Instructions:

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Next, the 6 minifigs, starting with the witch on her black dragon:

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All 5 figures of the fright section:

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And the poor royal knight:

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We go on with the set itself, first a general overview (it's really high!):

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On the "first floor" there's a trap with which you can drop stones or other things down on unliked guests, the pot comes originally from fabuland i think, i love this thing:

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In the same floor there is a second trap, if you pull the bar, the door opens:

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We move on to the tower itself (did i mention it's really high?), on the ground level there's the place for the witch to do her spells:

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The wall is a secret door, which reveals a skeleton when turned over:

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on the next level there is this little thingy, first it only seems like a barrel....

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...but when you pull the two 1x4 tiles on the back, a skull is being revealed, scary, huh :tongue: :

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I don't really understand what this is for but i assume it's a telescope to watch and observate the dragons, i do find that a bit senseless since there haven't been telescopes in medieval times (or have there been):

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The back of the tower with the prison and the room for the treasure chest:

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The prison opened. It's secured with a chain, which i like very much cause you really can lock it with that:

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Treasure chest:

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From the highest peak we now go down to the very ground level, at the back of the castle there is another secret wall-door, flanked by two shields:

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At the back half of the inside there is the throne hall for the Bat Lord, with a nice warm fireplace in the back (this is, where the secret door is placed):

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The second half is pretty empty, except for these two baskets. i don't know exactly what they are for, but i ike the idea for using them as water places for the horses:

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One thing that might be a bit stupid is that 2 of the 4 side entrances do not have doors, so they are open and a guard would have to stand there the whole day. You can see it in his face he isn't very happy with that :tongue: :

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That was my last review of the sets i got the last weeks, but i'm looking forward to make much more in the future. Overall this is a pretty good set, i don't know any other one with so much details and playability. The minus point is, as already said, that it is too open on the sides, but that can be solved easily with a bit of modding. Also i must say, this set isn't that much juniorized as many might have thought, though the design is a bit unconventional, but exactly that's what i like most about it. All in all it gets a 9/10 for me :thumbup: hope you enjoyed the reading and the pictures, can't wait to see your response. :classic:

Edit: Oops, i forgot to put one figure of the fright knight faction on the photo, but it's the one in the last picture. :wink:

Edited by KimT, 10 August 2008 - 01:28 PM.


#2 Sandy

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 09:51 PM

Nice review, good close-ups and a good, unconventional choice of a set.

As for the set itself, it has it's pros and cons in my eyes. I like all the minifigs, but especially the witch. The Fright Knights are probably the closest you can get for an evil human Castle faction. As for the building itself, on the other hand I like the fact that it can be modified, but some of the design choices are just stupid. The holes in the wall, the one huge tower (as opposed to several smaller ones), the huge empty space in the center, and the excessive usage of bright yellow.

I guess for a smaller kid the play value is great, it's easily accessible and it looks sturdy enough, but to an AFOL, it's not much else than a source for bricks and figs, in my opinion.

Oh, and they did have telescopes in the medieval times (the witch most probably uses it for astrology). And even if they didn't, we're talking about a castle with a dragon and a wicked witch in it, so it's not exactly a good example of accurate history. :tongue:

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#3 iamded

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 10:10 PM

Sweet review, metalandi! This set always looked a bit too busy for my liking, I guess I just didn't expect to see a set so tall.  :laugh: After seeing your review though, it is growing on me. I like all the play features, and at the very least it's a great parts pack.

Two things I'm confused about though.
In this pic, is that dragon being used as a swing set? :tongue:

And I don't get why the area where the witch casts her spells on the second floor is green. Green in Castle means grass (or Forestmen... :grin:), and having grass on the second floor of a building is just weird. I understand that it's modular and thus it would make sense if it were placed on the ground, but dark grey would make just as much sense, and would look much better than the green there IMO. Anyway, I'm just fussy. :tongue:

Thanks again for the cool review, will we be seeing any more?
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#4 SWMAN

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Posted 19 July 2008 - 11:33 PM

I love the reviews of older sets that I never had. Also, tiny thing, but you said it has 7 minifigs, but the group shots only include 6. The last guy isn't shown until the very end.
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#5 metalandi

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 12:23 AM

@iamded: yes it seems the dragon is used as such in the picture of the alternate model, but i guess bad and  evil knights also wanna have some fun sometimes :tongue:
you are right with the green plate on the second floor, it does look a bit disturbing. but that can be easily solved by using a dkgrey 8x8 plate instead of the green one. the grey version is quite popular i think so it shouldn't bee too difficult to get one.

@SWMAN: i know, but take a look at my EDIT in the first post, i just forgot to put the figure on the picture with the other guys. if you want i can make a new photo of all minifigs at once :wink:

as it comes to more reviews, i actually got one set left i would like to review, but i'm off tomorrow to italy until thursday, so i won't be able to do it until then. only thing i can tell already is that it will be a mid-sized pirate set :tongue:

#6 legobear

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 01:31 AM

I thoroughly enjoyed your review Metalandi, thank you  :classic: especially for taking photos of all the contraptions and detailing exactly how they work.  As a member of classic-castle, the census always seemed to be that fright knights were a class 4/10 or 6/10 but as Sandy stated above, it is one of the closest you can get to an evil faction.  By today's standards, the contraptions seen here are much much more sophisticated and well thought out and are definitely missing in 2007's King's Castle Siege.  I enjoy the design of this castle much more even if the towers are taller simply because the design in the King's Castle Siege left builders with an empty space right in the courtyard without even a base plate! AND it's nearly impossible to get your hands in and play in the enclosed space (why would anyone unless you're simply posing figs, and even that was difficult).  This Castle instead, had a variety of trap doors and surprises, so despite the varied colors used here, it's not that hard to realize that the designers for this Castle really took time to think things out and tried to make the Castle enjoyable for the children that will play with it whereas our 2007 Castle was strictly built to give kids the impression of an enormous magnificant Castle with little to nothing inside.  It's like comparing beauty (2007) to brains (this castle).

Edited by legobear, 20 July 2008 - 01:32 AM.


#7 iamded

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 01:39 AM

View Postmetalandi, on Jul 20 2008, 12:23 PM, said:

i actually got one set left i would like to review, but i'm off tomorrow to italy until thursday, so i won't be able to do it until then.
You won't be off 'till tomorrow. That's still a day away! There's still time! :grin:
No, but still, I'll be looking forward to the review when you get back! :sweet:
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#8 Lt. Col. Thok

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 01:54 PM

Very nice of a very nice set.  The revolving fireplace - I wonder what movie that could possibly be from? :tongue:
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#9 Filozof

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 02:31 PM

I have this set, and ilike it!
6097 have many usefull parts!
Greate Review!  :thumbup:
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#10 WhiteFang

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Posted 30 July 2008 - 09:11 AM

Metalandi, thanks for doing this Fright Knights review, by opening up a MISB set which you have bought recently. I am very sure the feeling is very nice, especially touching the bricks which is preserved for 11 years sealed in bags. :sweet:

I am quite fond of the Fright Knights theme. Unfortunately, this theme was released during my dark age. I never really bought sets from Fright Knights. Instead, I bought plenty of minifigs to build an army.

If I could turn back time or find another MISB set with a reasonable price, I am very sure I will get it. My soldiers need a castle to stay in. I will be looking forward to your next review. Keep up the good job :thumbup:

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#11 Shoc

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Posted 30 July 2008 - 01:31 PM

I read this review not long after you posted it, but I'm not sure why I didn't comment...  :wacko:  If Dragonator is the one to post everytime he sees a dragon related topic, I would be the one to post if I see a Fright Knights topic.  :tongue:
Fright Knights is one of my favourite Lego themes, and this review is really good! I got both of the castles in the theme and loved them, and your review presents Basil the Batlord's castle well. I too thought it was a bit weird that there is a green base when it could be grey, but I guess it's a useful piece to use in other things.  :thumbup:

Fright Knights On!  :knight:

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#12 Captain Green Hair

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Posted 30 July 2008 - 01:41 PM

Ah this brings back memories, i have this set and i loved the playabilaty factor opposing to older castle sets i have! :thumbup:

In medieval times there actually were primitive telescopes, you can read about it here.

Thanks for this review, great storie, great pics!
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#13 I Scream Clone

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Posted 31 July 2008 - 02:03 AM

Wow, what a cool castle and set in general! I had no idea that this set existed (long dark ages) Thanks to you metalandi for such a great review! :thumbup: The figures look really nice and the set is full of lots of little trinkets , details, traps etc! I have already had a look on ebay for this set. Looks like a great set for parts too.
I give the review 4.5/5 evil witches.
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#14 Sandy

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Posted 05 August 2008 - 10:21 AM

My first post in this topic looks foolish now that I bought this set from Ebay. I just really wanted the minifigs (although I already had the Batlord and the black dragon) and the parts. They will help me greatly in building the Impenetrable Fortress of the Dragonwarriors for my Princess Quest comic.

By the end of this week, this set will be in my clutches!

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#15 Inertia

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Posted 06 August 2008 - 05:37 AM

View PostSandy, on Aug 5 2008, 06:21 PM, said:

My first post in this topic looks foolish now that I bought this set from Ebay. I just really wanted the minifigs (although I already had the Batlord and the black dragon) and the parts. They will help me greatly in building the Impenetrable Fortress of the Dragonwarriors for my Princess Quest comic.

By the end of this week, this set will be in my clutches!

Great! Can't wait for the next installment!  :laugh:

Good review, the pieces are so shiny and new... All my Space sets aren't shiny... Or new...

This is an excellent castle, I got it the day it came out, it has a lot of playability.  :sweet:
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#16 metalandi

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Posted 06 August 2008 - 05:40 AM

Well, that the bricks look new comes from that they ARE new. I got this set new and unopened :tongue:

#17 Inertia

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Posted 07 August 2008 - 10:07 AM

View Postmetalandi, on Aug 6 2008, 01:40 PM, said:

Well, that the bricks look new comes from that they ARE new. I got this set new and unopened :tongue:

I know, pretty good deal!  :thumbup:
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#18 brickzone

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Posted 07 August 2008 - 10:34 AM

Good review - the photo from above shows off the scale of the castle much better than the box photo.

I was one of those who always thought this set looked lame, ever since first seeing it in the catalogue. A couple of my siblings had smaller Bat Lord/Fright Knight sets and enjoyed the accessories and style of the minifigs etc. So last year having not only ended my dark ages, but done so for some of the rest of my family, I got this set off ebay for my sister for Christmas. I of course had to build it to make sure all parts were there before leaving ebay feedback and ending the transaction.

First impressions were of how much brick there was to the set, as well as really useful large structural elements. And to be honest, while perhaps a bit childish, there's no doubt the style of the minifigs is kinda cute and useful for customs. It was really enjoyable building this set, and the scale is impressive when built, empty spaces notwithstanding (but hey, Lego has always had buildings with no back, etc. - just use your imagination and enjoy the access to playspace offered). The traps etc. are neat and more like the kind of "action features" modern sets come with (I for one am in favour of these, for kids they are fun and I think for builders they give ideas cause they are often done with minimal parts or impact on the set design).

Anyways, needless to say my sister loved the set. Indeed she's currently rebuilding it for the second time.

If I see it as cheap again, I will pick up one for myself. I got the first one at €30 incl postage I believe.

#19 Mörs

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Posted 26 December 2009 - 08:30 PM

Ahh... I remember how badly I wanted that set when it was new... oh well...

Definitely one of the most original castles, if not THE most. I actually liked how the 1st floor was made into a throne room. The tower looks pretty impressive, too. Of course, the castle has a flagrant flaw -- the walls on the sides are open. I also think it lacks in the minifig count, though that is understandable for a castle with a dragon.

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The Fright Knights are probably the closest you can get for an evil human Castle faction.
Totally agreed.

#20 Big Cam

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Posted 26 December 2009 - 10:30 PM

Quite the topic bump, but dang, what a cool set, and so tall.

This is the kind of sets I had as a kid, but I don't remember this one.  I'm jealous.s

#21 supertoad64

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Posted 30 December 2009 - 09:46 AM

I got a couple of the small sets from this line when it came out. Recently, I acquired several more from Bricklink because I just really love the way they look. This theme really had good intentions, but the execution was flawed. I hope one day Lego returns to a darker tone, but maybe next time it could be more Castlevania inspired. That would really turn some heads! Plus, vampires and gothic aesthetics are really popular now. It will probably have run its course by the time Lego would be able to develop a theme around them, though.




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