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Review: 4181 Isla de Muerta


18 replies to this topic  – Started by Masked Builder , May 13 2011 03:48 PM

Poll: On a scale 1 to 5 (45 member(s) have cast votes)

How Do You Rate This Set?

  1. 1- Poor (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  2. 2- Below Average (2 votes [4.44%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.44%

  3. 3- Average (17 votes [37.78%])

    Percentage of vote: 37.78%

  4. 4- Above Average (19 votes [42.22%])

    Percentage of vote: 42.22%

  5. 5- Outstanding (7 votes [15.56%])

    Percentage of vote: 15.56%

Which Minifigure Is The Best?

  1. - Elizabeth Swan (13 votes [28.89%])

    Percentage of vote: 28.89%

  2. - Jack Sparrow (6 votes [13.33%])

    Percentage of vote: 13.33%

  3. - Hector Barbossa (26 votes [57.78%])

    Percentage of vote: 57.78%

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#1 Masked Builder

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 03:48 PM

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I got this set for Elizabeth Swann and the pearl gold parts.  As it turns out Elizabeth is one of my favorite minifigures since Ginny Weasley.  In fact all of the minifigures are great!  Now to trim the mizzenmast and start the review!


Name: Isla de Muerta
Set Number: 4181
Pieces: 152
Price: $19.99
Ages: 6-12
Minifigures: 4
Theme: Pirates Of The Caribbean
Year Of Release: 2011

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S@H Description said:

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Protect Elizabeth and gain control of the Black Pearl!

Only the descendant of Bootstrap Bill can free the Captain Hector Barbossa and his undead crew from their horrible curse. Is Elizabeth Swann the key? They think so! Help Captain Jack Sparrow to defeat the transformed Skeleton Barbossa then free Elizabeth Swann and gain control of the Black Pearl!


Box:
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The front of the box has your usual set lay out.  All of the figs in a nice action pose, how well can one pose Elizabeth anyways, and a nice little logo telling us that there's a poster in there.  The art that's spread across the top of the bow with Jack and the Disney logo is one of the best designs that I've seen since the Rex logo for the Star Wars boxes.

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Again the back of the box has your typical lay out showing the functions, and alternate minifigure poses. The background with the map pattern is very original and quite fitting for the theme.  Oh and I forgot to mention that the opposite side of the minfigures head is shown here.

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The 1:1 image is of Elizabeth Swann.  No surprise there as she's the best minifigure in the set.  The rim of the box is a nice ocean blue color that's also fitting for a pirate theme.

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The bottom of the box has an ad for the upcoming video game.  I've noticed that the more recent boxes have had some type of ad for a video game or some other item on the bottom.  Has anyone else notice this?


Contents:
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Inside the box we have; one manual and a poster, mine didn't come in cardboard :cry_sad: , four unnumbered bags, and one loose boat piece.  Pretty average for a set of this size, I would like to know why the manual and the poster didn't come in cardboard and why the pearl gold parts aren't in one of the larger bags.


Manual:
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About the same art as the front of the box, less information is shown here so you can see Lego's very good editing skills.  It's been so long since I've seen the movies that I've kind of forgotten what Jack looks like, good to see his face here. :laugh:

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Once you get inside the manual in the bottom right hand of the pages have this little scene of what looks like a skeleton and a cherub thing sharing a drink, sitting on a cup that says, "Aqua De Vida."  Which I believe means "Water of life."  Certainly interesting but a bit on the creepy side too, if you ask me.  I find it interesting that these are in the manuals because the whole fourth POTC movie is structured around Jack looking for the Fountain of Youth.

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After you've gotten the set built you run into the section with the ads and part layout page.  But in this one we get a picture of each of the Pirates Of The Caribbean posters.  All of which look very nice, though it looks like some give away the ending of the new movie.  The poster for the Fountain Of Youth set for example is showing us that Jack runs off with the girl and the Red Coats rush into capture Blackbeard and Barbossa.

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As for the other page creeping into that last photo there's an ad for the new Alien Conquest theme!  Which I, for one, am really looking forward too, this page certainly adds to the "want" factor of the new theme.


Poster:
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I would think that this is the main side of the poster for this set.  Again this one gives away the ending of the movie, though this time it's the first one, and includes a minifigure, Will, that's not in the set.  It's really more of an expansion on what the final battle at the end of the movie looks like, but very nice looking rendering nonetheless.

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The alternate side of the poster shows a circular layout with some of the minifigures from the sets, on a nice background of a burned red color.  In the lower right hand corner, boy Lego likes that corner, there's a picture of Jack Sparrows exclusive minifigure.  I've interpreted the letters to mean; "Video Game Jack Sparrow."  Though I have no idea what "PW" stands for........

Minifigures:
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Okay onto the minifigures!  All of them feature new prints for their heads.  Captain Barbossa's hat is the same one from the Collectible Musketeer, with a lovely dark Blue feather.  Elizabeth's new hair is very prevalent from the front.  I must admit that it's some of my favorite hair for the ladies in quite a while.

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Here's a back picture of the minifigures.  As you can see I've removed their head gear to show the other side of their head, if they have one.  Only Elizabeth and Jack have double sided heads.  Elizabeth's is a mad/screaming face, a bit scary/creepy if you ask me, and Jack has his half cursed face.  I do seem to recall that Jack turned into part of a skeleton in the movie.  All but the skeleton have back printing that's really first rate.

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This picture shows the back of the hair of the two minifigures that I removed the hair from in the last shot.  As you can see Jack's hair has some printing and Elizabeth's hair is very wavy.  I really quite like the wavy look that her hair has.

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Okay this picture was really hard to find.  But now that I've got it it's nice to be able to compare them.  The hair is very accurate and about the same color.  The dress is perfect but I think the neck line could go a bit lower on it.  But I do think the eye brow color is wrong.  The detail and color depth on Elizabeth's dress is awesome!  I mean who doesn't like a nice dark red dress?

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Hector and his minifigure have so much depth in their clothing it's just blowing me away.  Both have that nice red undershirt, and a large belt.  The eye brows and beard are off a bit on this one.

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And a comparison picture with Jack and his fellow minifigure.  Again fairly close really.  I would like to see his hair a bit more pronounced but other than that this is one amazingly accurate minifigure.  The mustache is a bit off on this one too, but hey really only a minor difference.  While I do like the Jack fig a lot I like the one with the brown arms better as the white arms just seem the wrong color to me.  The level of detail in the hair on this figure is quite amazing!

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Both versions of the Barbossa fig feature this amazing new sword holder piece, seen in action here.  It works very well and was made in the same fashion of the Indy bag.  I don't like the skeleton version as much because one moment he's has clothes the next he doesn't!  I would like to see a new skeleton mold for him with some clothes.

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This is my one problem with the set.  The sword holder on the skeleton doesn't clip under the torso line.  So when you pick him up to move the fig it flops around like a fish out of water.

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On a more positive note, I feel that these are some of my favorite girl minifigues because of their amazing outfights, hair, and faces.  As you can see here the print on Elizabeth's Corset and bottom half of her minifigure don't line up.  It does bother me that they don't line up but this seems to be fairly common with some of the newer figs.


Parts:
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Okay so for new parts in this set we have, the amazing new hair piece for Elizabeth, the new pearl gold parts, a 2x4 light bley tile, a 1x1 compass tile for Jack, one of those new 2x2 round bricks with the grill pattern on them (I see to review the set that have these!), and the sword holder for Barbossa.  All are amazing new parts for this set that I'm very happy to have acquired and can't wait to use elsewhere.

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And here are our leftovers.  Some fire, one of those nice dark blue plumes, some of those new gold bits, a skeleton arm, and a compass tile for Jack.  All in all this set boasts some very nice extra parts.


The Set:
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And here's our completed set!  Over all lookin' very nice, a bit smaller than it looks on the box though.  Much tall then I had expected and more grey parts too.

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First you build Jack's little boat.  Nice and simple, though I have noticed that the newer sets with oars have flat ends while the older style ones have rounded ends.  I assume that it's to conserve plastic.  Anyone know anything about this?

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Then the manual has you build the little "treasure chest" for Elizabeth.  Again very simple, but you do see the use of one of the new 2x1 light bley cheese slope tiles on the sides of this part.  I want to know why the top for this is dark tan.  Don't get me wrong I love dark tan but it would make more sense for it to be light bley or brown.

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Last of all you build the little cave section.  This part of the build has most of the functions.  It's also the biggest and has the most pearl gold parts.  Also the popular hangout of Hector Barbossa!  I would have liked to have seen a bit more rock and more treasure like in the movie.

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Most of the working parts of the build can be seen here.  I'm not sure why both versions of the Barbossa fig are holding an apple, as I don't remember it in the movie.  The rock work flattens out back here and I would love to see Lego continue it to make it all look good.


Functions:
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So we'll start out with this.  You can remove the top of the "treasure chest" to access the coins inside, a very, very simple feature that doesn't even seem like a feature to me.

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To go from Barbossa to Skeleton Barbossa you rotate the little rock section to show the skeleton version and hide the human one or vice-versa.  This is quite accurate to the movie, though when he stepped into the moon light he changed into a skeleton, and is the main function of the set if you ask me.

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So Jack is happily sailing through the entrance, if you want to call it that, when.... ....Oh no!  The Mast of a sunken ship has fallen on him!  A pretty simple function that adds to the set, I don't think that it fell on him in the movie though.  You make it fall on Jack by pushing.....

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.....this little lever.


Final Thoughts:
While this isn't the best of deals when it comes to functionality I'm still very happy with this set and got it mostly for the minifigures and the parts.  I guess another reason I got it would be because I got it for $5 off.  This just seals the deal for me.  I love saving money on Legos.  I know that this scene is much better looking in the movie but Lego certainly did their best in designing this set and I must say the price tag is just fine.  So good job Lego!


Ratings:
Playability: 8/10  While it does have three different functions none of them really surprise me.  So that's why it's not perfect here.
Design: 9/10  I feel that it could be made a bit larger, adding more to the cave and some more skeleton pirates etc., and the price raised to make this much better.
Price: 10/10  While it doesn't have the optimal price-to-piece ratio, it's still a very good deal and I'm quite happy with my purchase.
Minifigures: 10/10 All of them are amazing.  I'm very very pleased with them and can't wait to get my hands on some more POTC figs.
Parts: 9/10  Many cool new parts for this set.  While the gold bars weren't shiny as per the picture, they'll still make a get addition to MOCs.
Total: 46/50  Wow I do seem to like to give out high scores.  Anyways, this is a great set that I would highly recommend.


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#2 Ro87n

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 04:16 PM

Thanks for this review. Now I know that the Elizabeth Minifig top and dress doesn't line-up.
But that might not stop me from wanting this set. It has alot pieces I could use and I love the figs.

Thanks agian MB
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#3 Big Cam

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Posted 13 May 2011 - 04:27 PM

Fantastic review Masked Builder!

The Reviewers Academy delivers again, I live multiple reviews of the same set because it's good to see different points of view, and I love your comparison to the real life versions.

An excellent review!

#4 Masked Builder

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 09:43 PM

Thanks to the both of you!

View PostBig Cam, on 13 May 2011 - 04:27 PM, said:

The Reviewers Academy delivers again, I live multiple reviews of the same set because it's good to see different points of view, and I love your comparison to the real life versions.
Thanks.  Thought it's something I picked up from Oky-Wan's reviews.  Still I've taken it and made it my own. :pir-sweet:
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#5 Gryphon Ink

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Posted 15 May 2011 - 10:05 PM

Very nice review, Masked Builder.  I really like this set.  And my Elizabeth's two parts don't line up, either.  I was mildly perturbed by this, since she's otherwise a really brilliant figure.

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I'm not sure why both versions of the Barbossa fig are holding an apple, as I don't remember it in the movie.

In the first movie, when Barbossa is still cursed, he says that the first thing he's going to do when the curse is lifted is eat a nice juicy apple.  Then, of course, he dies.  At the end of DMC, when he is brought back to life, he enters the scene munching on a green apple.
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#6 lightningtiger

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 01:07 PM

Excellent review 'Masked Builder', a great set for those minifigs.....you can never have too many Jack's now can you ? :pir-laugh:
Dam, that crappy gold....oh, mental note - LT ring Lego Oz about the replacement gold...I know it got taken by Battlefield Earth ! :pir-laugh:
I can assume the chest of gold is meant to be a stone coffin....dam, forgot the name of it....blast, I watch quite a bit of History Channel ! :pir-laugh:
Keep on drink that rum everyone ! :pir-laugh:

#7 lego king

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Posted 16 May 2011 - 02:15 PM

Another great review.
Your tempting me to get all of the Potc sets now. :pir_laugh2:

#8 Tazmaniac

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Posted 17 May 2011 - 06:37 AM

VDJSPW = Voodoo Jake Sparrow Posted Image
Great review !..... Now off to get my crome gold from LEGO!

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#9 Gregorovich

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 11:09 AM

Thanks for the great review! This is one of the best of the PotC sets IMO, as it has so many excellent parts and minifigs. The build is too simple I think, but the abundance of new and interesting parts makes up for that. The Elizabeth fig is my second favourite (Syrena just beats her by a tiny bit!) of the whole line, so that's another good reason to get this. I'm just not sure whether to get this, the Captain's Cabin, Freeing Dobby or the Forbidden forest (as you can tell, I have a very low LEGO budget :pir-cry_sad: ).

Thanks again for the great review!

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#10 Red Bricks

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 10:40 AM

I got this set a while back, & I replaced Barbossa's right leg with a peg leg so it looks as he does at the end of the latest film, Nice review  :jollyroger: :pir-sweet:

#11 fred67

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Posted 23 May 2011 - 02:05 AM

View PostRed Bricks, on 22 May 2011 - 10:40 AM, said:

I got this set a while back, & I replaced Barbossa's right leg with a peg leg so it looks as he does at the end of the latest film, Nice review  :jollyroger: :pir-sweet:
Thanks for the spoiler.

#12 Captain'Spaulding

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 09:21 PM

Very nice review, it should take you a long time to do.
Bravo, nice job; everything is well presented  but I found that your rating completely absurd.
Minifigs are great except Cursed Barbossa, a double print head would be better, I think. Werewolf lose there clothes whenthey transform, not Barbossa ... These new skeletons's body, legs and arms are squalid. The PotC sets are very expensive, maybe THE MOST EXPENSIVE, and except the Cortez's treasure the rest of this set is bad as possible.

I've made a review of this set too and my final rating is 12/20.

Everthing is not awesome in this set. It's great to have this new license, there's lot off good minifigure for building so many MOCs.

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#13 Horry

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 09:27 PM

View PostCaptain, on 30 May 2011 - 09:21 PM, said:

.
Bravo, nice job; everything is well presented  but I found that your rating completely absurd.
Minifigs are great except Cursed Barbossa, a double print head would be better, I think. Werewolf lose there clothes whenthey transform, not Barbossa ... These new skeletons's body, legs and arms are squalid. The PotC sets are very expensive, maybe THE MOST EXPENSIVE, and except the Cortez's treasure the rest of this set is bad as possible.

I've made a review of this set too and my final rating is 12/20.

I'd say that you are presenting your point rather well, but it is not necessary to say that he's got "absurd" opinions as this is still a matter of opinion, would't you say? After all, Masked Builder has put a lot of work into his work, as you pointed out. No need to degrade his work.
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#14 Captain'Spaulding

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Posted 30 May 2011 - 11:12 PM

View PostHorry, on 30 May 2011 - 09:27 PM, said:

I'd say that you are presenting your point rather well, but it is not necessary to say that he's got "absurd" opinions as this is still a matter of opinion, would't you say? After all, Masked Builder has put a lot of work into his work, as you pointed out. No need to degrade his work.

Well, explain my point of view will be hard, english is not my born language, I'll try.

For me when you give 9/10 it's for something that's near from perfection. When I read "Design: 9/10 I feel that it could be made a bit larger, adding more to the cave and some more skeleton pirates etc., and the price raised to make this much better." for me it's absurd (maybe "absurde" in french and "absurd" in english don't have the same power... Argg can't find the good word) I cannot personnaly give a 9/10 to a set that's I found small, little detailed and expansive.

Maybe the good word is "overestimated" and not "absurd". And I don't want degrade his work, only point that I found that his rating  isn't objective and won't represent the reality. Yes the good word is overestimated. Forget the "absurd" :pir-wink:

The purpose is not of giving the 20/20 for the set you review, it's understandable that the PotC fever is responsible for that, or maybe it's rhum...

Capt'n S.

#15 castlestrike666

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Posted 31 May 2011 - 07:50 PM

View PostTazManiac, on 17 May 2011 - 06:37 AM, said:

VDJSPW = Voodoo Jake Sparrow Posted Image
Great review !..... Now off to get my crome gold from LEGO!

Great review!  :pir-devil:

But as many people, I haven't received the chrome gold as pictured on the box. So off I went to LEGO  :pir-tongue:

Thank you LEGO, today I received my package with spare parts. HOWEVER, when I opened the bag, there were 2 pearl gold jumper tiles and 2 chrome gold sets (as we know them for years) inside. I looked again, but no. No new chrome gold...

So: off to LEGO again  :pir-sweet:

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#16 Dr.Cogg

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Posted 01 June 2011 - 04:44 AM

I still think that lego should have made a hair+hat piece like Jack and Angelica ,also a slight inprovement I made to skeleton Barbossa was putting a cape on, but instead of attaching it to the neck I attached it to the arm joints then put on the arms so it looks like he's wearing his jacket. P.S. Why is everyone calling him Voodoo Jack, when its Skeleton Jack ?

Edited by Dr.Cogg, 30 August 2011 - 11:57 PM.


#17 Red Bricks

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Posted 02 June 2011 - 11:14 AM

View Postfred67, on 23 May 2011 - 02:05 AM, said:

Thanks for the spoiler.

I was only saying what I did with the set... Don't cry?

View Postfred67, on 23 May 2011 - 02:05 AM, said:

Thanks for the spoiler.

I was only saying what I did with the set... Don't cry?

#18 The Cobra

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Posted 30 August 2011 - 07:54 PM

I used to like this set, I like it even more now, since I bought it (for 35% off), it came with real gold pieces and cardboard to protect instructions and poster.

I rate it "above average", and have picked Barbossa as best fig.

Thanks for the reivew (thanks to WhiteFang too; I chose to bump the most recent one)
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#19 Masked Builder

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 01:03 AM

View PostThe Cobra, on 30 August 2011 - 07:54 PM, said:

I used to like this set, I like it even more now, since I bought it (for 35% off), it came with real gold pieces and cardboard to protect instructions and poster.

I rate it "above average", and have picked Barbossa as best fig.

Thanks for the reivew (thanks to WhiteFang too; I chose to bump the most recent one)
Wow nice deal! :thumbup:

You're welcome.
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