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Review: 70402 The Gatehouse Raid

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Set Number: 70402

Name: The Gatehouse Raid

Theme: Castle

Year of Release: 2013

Pieces: 248

Minifigures: 4

Price: $29.99 USD

Links: Flickr image gallery Bricklink Brickset

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This set's boxart distinguishes it as the only one in the line which has the silouettes of two of the line's other models in the background. The others either have none or only one of the two you can see here (70403 Dragon Mountain and 70404 King's Castle, the remaining larger two I plan to review next). Such an inconsequential detail may seem unremarkable, but it's like giving teasers of what's to come in order from smallest to largest!

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The figures include two knights and two soldiers, two of each faction. The Red Dragon knight has a beastplate with a laminar-style armor print but has underneath it the same lamellar-style torso print as the Red Dragon soldier. You'd think the Crownie Lion knight would have the same tunic torso print as the Crownie solder underneath his breastplate, but actually has the cuirass torso print - a little redundant I think! The leg printing is nice, the Crownie sword is again like a shorter version of the classic chrome greatsword, the Red Dragon knight has the broadsword introduced for the Lord of the Rings license, and the Crownie Lion knight has a new single-sided head with ginger muttonchops and a goatee, as well as eyebrows and crow's feet.

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The back printing is nice as always, and you can see the Red Dragon knight has an expression of aggression printed on the other side of the head with the same eyebrows and stubble pattern etc.

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The siege engine bears the red 1x1 "cheese" slope motif used for other vehicles including the carriage in the previously reviewed smaller set, 70401 Gold Getaway, and a battering ram in the larger 70404 King's Castle I have yet to review, the latter of which confirms that the pattern may be meant to evoke the appearance of a dragon by their spiny osteoderms. Just to be clear, the trans-orange 1x1s are meant to be the firey projectiles for this catapult.

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The new barding - or caparison - is more open in the back to accommodate the rearing ability of the new horse. The red, unprinted criniere/champron on the horse's neck/head does not conflict with the top/front edge of the caparison as the head is rotated down.

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Of the few interesting things that can be said about the gatehouse, the 2x2 dark tan tile with the central stud effectively prevents the gate from opening out in the wrong direction, and the central merlon at the top of the tower provides a magic crystal and a lion-emblazoned heater shield (while those used by the knights below are both kite shields). Why magic? I can't imagine what else mysteriously teleports the guard up there! The catapult below seems almost as inaccessible and nearly as useless considering that it can't be aimed to adjust the trajectory of its projectiles.

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As usual, the extra parts include some spare weapons, accessories (plumes), as well as some various Technic/1x1 bits and pieces.

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Thanks for reading, and remember to vote above and comment bellow!

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Pretty good set! I love the black horse and the two knights. I would have switched up the crownies' torsos to give them both some protection. Doubling up on the knight is silly. Being a ginger knight, he probably has some superpowers and dosn't need any extra armor anyway. :grin:

The gatehouse is okay, not too bad for the design budget, I imagine. Some average parts in there but the Figs are what makes this ine for sure!

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Thank you for your effort in bringing us reviews on this new theme, I enjoyed reading your commentary. For the cost of this set, the gatehouse is a bit underwhelming. I would have loved to see more meat in the design. That being said, the figs printings are great. I am a big fan of the new battle helmet for the horse and I may get a few more off of BL. My opinion on the barding is going to be biased - It looks alright but not great. It's a little hard for me to accept this change since I am so used to the old design. Maybe it's just me, but what do you other castle enthusiasts think?

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Man, you're really knocking these Castle reviews out the park, 'oo7'! :thumbup:

This is one of those sets I bailed out last minute on getting. I liked it at first, but then the interior disappointed me. I've never gotten any of the Tower sets from modern Castle (2007-now), unless you count the Drawbridge Defense as one.

If you have the big Castle set, I'd love it if you took a picture of this connected to it, as advertised on the box! :classic:

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My main gripe is the mixing of pointed and blunt swords. Makes no sense, really.

I've never noticed that. That must really suck for the Lion Knights. :tongue:

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Excellent review, like the others (I haven't read all of them yet), but once again I would like to see your score for this set. I think its pretty much the same thing as 7948, and with a bit <insert that tiresome argument> looks of the whole theme (I understand it, but I dont like it) I give it an average score, but I will probably be getting it in due time. + I agree with -Carson Haupt- about mixing of blunt and pointy swords. Anyways, keep up the good work and these great reviews coming, oo7! :wink:

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I must admit I love the baddies heads. They will be very useful!

I see they fixed the broblem previous gatehouse had- It was too short and the horse with ridercouldn't go through! :D

This set is the nicest one and I'm looking foward buying at least two instead of buying the castle.

I also double the idea to take photo of Gatehouse + Castle or even all sets toghether!

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The highlights for me for this set are the Dragon Knight's armour and barding. The Gatehouse itself will be built once and then pulled apart and added to my castle parts box methinks. The tiny Dragon catpult is pathetic but somehow they managed to go even worse on the Gatehouse itself by adding a tiny catapult that will only ever be able to hit something directly in front of it given that it can't move from side to side at all.

What were they thinking?

I'm not a big fan of these sets in comparison to Kingdoms or the Fantasy era but will pick a few up for the new minifigs I guess.

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Thanks 'oo7' for another review, if priced right it will sell.....though the weapons on both sides - meh, thank goodness there are AFOL's to redesign and more so rearm both sides.

Brick On Review On 'oo7' ! :classic:

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Again, another great review. I'm liking some of this set, the Crown Knight's new face is quite nice (it's basically a yellow, single-sided version of Bofur's head) and the new horse barding + champron are really quite nice, although a less-garish silver one would be ideal. The actual building structure and the seige engine aren't great, but still have their uses (parts). Nice, but certainly not a must buy.

Edited by Carousel

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The new faces of the minifigs is the highlight of this theme, in my opinion. They look great. But while the dragon knights are sort of growing on me, I still find the figures really underwhelming compared to those of Kingdoms.

The structure is decent enough (though the oddly placed catapult drags it down a bit) and looks like a mix between Outpost Attack and Escape from The Dragon's Prison from Kingdoms with some PoTC-style roofing. I have a hard time seeing it as a substantial addition to the Castle but am eager to see it lined up.

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Great review. This is a very substantial set, which is what one should expect for $30. Great minifigures, a great structure, and a sturdy-looking (if a bit boring) catapult. Your photos do a great job showing off the set.

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Thanks for the review! I'd say the only thing stopping me from buying this set is the price here in Canada but I'll probably save up for it regardless.

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Great review, I really like this set (probably the best of this castle wave), and especially the horse :wub: . The rest of the set is nice too, although I agree that the catapult is pretty useless where it is :wink: .

While commenting, I might note that the detail on the minifigures (especially their faces) is quite nice, the best minifig being the red knight IMO.

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Great review, with wonderful photography! The blue armored knight's face is from Dino, I believe. It's a great face, with a lot of character.

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Great review! I have one question though: Does this set come with the new gold 1-1 round tile printed lock piece?

~Insectoid Aristocrat

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Thanks for the great review! I don't like the new castle line, because the faction logos look too childish. The dragon head looks like a squid and the lion is about to fall asleep. The dragon minifig designs look good though, maybe i will buy some and remove the logo.

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I think the critics are being a bit too hard on this set. Consider this: the printing on the minifigures exceed anything that LEGO has ever made before for the soldiers as far as detail and color schemes. They have really done a great job revitalizing the Kingdom colors with the mixing of silver, gold and blue. The baddies with the black and red (kind of a remake of the Vladek color schemes) are also very esthethic. Although i have to agree with some of the points bashing the meat of the gatehouse; however, one has to look at this also as a product that a company is trying to sell. A company tries to make maximum profits from minimal raw materials invested. Yes, the customer does not get a lot of meat but gets a horse with boarding (which LEGO does not like to give out in large amounts) and some form of a building that can be used for spare parts but it can stand by itself.

I think the minifigures are totally worth the set for $30 and the horse with the boarding and the castle parts. Could LEGO have done a better job? Of course. People can always bring that arguement into the mix; nevertheless, i think, the community should focus on the what you are actually getting vs what we are not. Did i regret buying the set? Not really. Most of the time all of us know what we are getting when we look at the picture on the front.

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Consider this: the printing on the minifigures exceed anything that LEGO has ever made before for the soldiers as far as detail and color schemes.

You present this 'fact' as if it's an objective truth, while it is in actuality nothing more than yet another subjective opinion. I personally find the last two Castle themes to be superior, with Kingdoms being better by a huge margin. The new wizard stands out, though.

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You present this 'fact' as if it's an objective truth, while it is in actuality nothing more than yet another subjective opinion. I personally find the last two Castle themes to be superior, with Kingdoms being better by a huge margin. The new wizard stands out, though.

I agree that the last two themes (or at least the last) where superior (the use of Dark colours in particular is quite pleasing) to this one in colour and symbol (two very important aspects of a castle theme. I'm still rather annoyed that they chose to reuse the Dragon vs. Lion imagery, but there's another topic for that argument), but I also think that this set is the best in the line, apart from the army-builder 12 $ set. It comes with 4 soldier minifigures (more than any other set accept the 12 $ one and the castle) a black horse, new, beautiful horse barding, A kite shield with the dragon logo, a new set of armour with the dragon logo, a black bucket helmet, the blue tunic torso, the new faces (I actually really like both of the Dragon knight faces in this, particularly that of the goateed man) and a few useful pieces aside (the gate and the arch pieces are always useful, and same goes for the new brick pieces, and the new padlock printed tile is delightful.) I'm actually going buy this set, I think, along with the 12 $ one. If you can accept the theme as a whole as worth your time and money, I think this set is one of the best in the theme.

~Insectoid Aristocrat

Edited by Dannylonglegs

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I like your review, but that set looks quite poor.

The colors in this new line are far too bright and dazzling, I mean the medieval was a quite dark time in history.

Though the new barding and swords of this line are really useful.

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