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Just finished these new custom minifigures, and to be honest, I think they turned out really nicely. Got a new printer and new sticker material, and the printing looks really crisp! :D Almost done with Delacour and Krum, and I'm exited to finish them too, however these two are certainly my favorites
Back when LEGO still made really weird decisions about things on the regular came this supremely odd, almost confusingly cool set. It's… Set Title: Graveyard Duel Set #: 4766 Theme: Harry Potter Subtheme: Goblet of Fire Pieces: 548 Minifigures: 8 (including skeletons) Year of Release: 2005 Price at Release: USD 30, GBP 30 Buy it? Inventory? Bricklink Just browse the pictures? Flickr set INTRODUCTION Back in the rocky mid-'00s, LEGO did some dumb things. Maybe they will already over their very lowest point by the time this set rolled around in 2005, but they clearly still didn't have it all together. Just as things were getting cooler and cooler in Harry Potter, LEGO started stepping it up with even more Harry Potter sets than ever, covering everything you could ever want in the films. Right? WRONG. Four measly sets for Goblet of Fire, just another single Hogwarts for Order of the Phoenix, and big fat ZERO for Half-Blood Prince. WHY LEGO WHY WHY WHY. At least they righted some of their wrongs with the amazing 2010 sets. (Check out reviews of most of those on my profile.) But back to this set. I've already reviewed the other Goblet of Fire set I have, the underwater one, which has some awesome minifigs, cool parts, and is still a really weird set. This one is weirder. Way weirder. Come with me and find out why. PACKAGING I don't have the box anymore, but I can tell you that it was weird. Harry and Peter Pettigrew both had the wrong heads on the box. Yes. On the box. Packaging does not reflect contents. Weird. The other thing that you would've noticed if you were in the part of the world where piece count is on the box: 548 pieces. MSRP 30 bucks. What? How? Why? 548 pieces for 30 bucks? Is that wrong? In this case, packaging does reflect contents. It's too good to be true. INSTRUCTIONS Here's that front of box picture, where you will see that Harry still has his fleshie years 1-3 face, and Peter Pettigrew aka Wormtail has his Prison of Azkaban face. It also clearly shows Wormtail with one grey hand and one flesh hand, though in my copy of the set he had two grey hands (which I quickly remedied). The set also just looks weird - it's like somebody had a leftover Halloween set, though 'Hey there's a graveyard in the new Harry Potter movie!' and just threw in some HP figs to make it an HP set. Harry still has the wrong face on the minifigs page, though Wormtail is now correct. LEGO also apparently had the worst possible computer technology at this point in time. Luckily color differentiation was just fine, as you can see the vast difference between black and dark grey. The instructions also have a pleasing, Harry Potter-y parchment background. I don't want to bore you with five thousand pictures of instructions, but check out this alternate model. It's so cool OMG WOW! As an aside, I recall that Barnes & Noble's website showed this image (on a white background) as the main set image. Wormtail once again has the wrong face in this image that is clearly of physical LEGO. The back actually has the right head on Harry! A LEGO catalog that came at that time also featured the right head, so I guess by the time LEGO did promotional materials, they had the actual finished product. Also don't you remember that scene where the Hungarian Horntail attacks the Durmstrang Ship? If Peter Jackson had directed the movie, that scene probably would have existed. MINIFIGURES Let's move on to the actually interesting stuff. Minifigures! The minifig selection in this set honestly could be better. There's not that many of them, and they're not that great. A couple more Death Eaters would have been nice, and of course - where's Cedric? Remember, that random character nobody really cared about? Honestly, just more Death Eaters would've been fine with me. Here's what we DO get, though. Harry looks great, with a fitting torso, and my favorite smiling Harry face of all. Why he's simply smiling without an alternate face - now that's a good question. LEGO did alternate faces for Ron, Hermione, Lucius (in this set), and underwater Harry in this wave, so they could've stepped up here. It's just silly. Voldemort is awful. It's basically the same print that was on the Quirrel figure, but now glowing in the dark. Massive facepalm. Lucius Malfoy has a boss Death Eater mask that can luckily be used to made generic Death Eaters, so that's great. And Wormtail. The hair is all wrong and the torso is a bit simple, but I guess the face works. Something feels a little off with it, though. Valiant effort, but not mah fave. Harry has a fitting back print, while Lucius Malfoy has a torso that's nearly identical to his original version, just not with shininess. His face is similar to the original, but it's printed with just one color (black) so he has flesh-colored pupils that just look bad. Thankfully, the 2010 version of Mr. Malfoy's head was decent, so if you have this head you can just use the other side for a generic Death Eater and forget it's Malfoy. In sum, Harry emerges as the only actually-good figure of these four (minus his lack of serious face), with Lucius coming out as ok due to his mask, Wormtail being tolerable, and Voldemort being crap. LEGO thankfully made an A+ 100% amazing Voldemort in the 2010 line, but back in 2005 you would've been better off… I don't know, not even having Voldemort? Not really, but this sucked. Remember all of the skeletons in the graveyard scene in the movie? No? Too bad, you get them anyway! LEGO even went out of it's way to make an exclusive all-black skeleton for all of your medieval burned-at-the-stake MOCing needs. They also decided to throw in sand green skelly parts already in existence from the Dementors, but didn't make any more sand green parts than they'd already done, so you're left with a 1/3 rotting-infest and 2/3 burned skelly. Fantastic. I personally always hated this 'new' skelly face since it's just more freaky than it needs to be. It still gives me shivers. (Note the exclusive black Hippogryph wings, though - awesome!) ACCESSORIES I already showed the wands with the wands and knife with the minifigs, so there are those. In addition, you get a black shovel, full light bley trash can with lid, and broom. The black shovel has been in a fair number of sets, but it's still comparatively rare so cool to get. The trash bin in light bley has only been in five sets, so it's even more rare. This photo proves that one can, with care, pose skellies. But it's very annoying. ANIMALS It wouldn't be a Harry Potter set without copious and unnecessary amounts of animals. Both the green snake and dark bley frog appeared in those colors here for the first time. It also appears Norbert cloned herself and and took a bath in tar. Also new and still exclusive to this day in black. The designer using his or her parts budget well - amiright? (Based on the fact that there are 548 parts in this set anyway, I'll assume the designing budget was set at 'whatever.') SET The set, such as it is, is just a combination of a bunch of different little things. I wish I could take you through it in build order, but I don't have the instructions in front of me anymore and I don't completely recall it. It doesn't matter that much anyway. Let's get into it! Cauldron Here's something that actually makes sense given the scene, which did in fact feature a cauldron. Now that I'm looking at the instructions front picture, it seems the cauldron isn't even there, but it is indeed in the set. You're instructed to put a bunch of studs and a knife inside. Red for blood of an enemy, knife for flesh of a servant, white for baby Voldemort ghost, and yellow for pee of a goat perhaps? IDK. Gate Here's example number 1 of LEGO being totally excessive with this big gate section that wasn't even in the film. Recolored Norbert as already mentioned, tons of fence pieces - just tons of pieces. Let me be clear - I'm not complaining about this stuff, it's just totally weird. The effect looks very nice. If you wish, you can even close the whole gate thing. Magic! This would actually work for a privately enclosed grave in a larger graveyard. Cart Thingy Since Harry Potter is set before the time of cars and more specifically hearses, this wooden-looking olden-day coffin cart is included. I'm not sure how the designer even came up with this, but once again, it's designed very nicely. It makes use of parts that were still relatively new and rare at the time, like the 1x2 brown plate with bar at the back and the cheese slopes. The reddish brown plate with bar is still really rare, actually, appearing in just three sets. Cheese slopes of course are now so common that LEGO would probably ship you a box of five thousand free of charge. The coffin easily separates and looks quite good on its own, though it's kind of weird because it doesn't reflect the size of minifigures. Still looks great though. Very very creepily, the instructions instruct you to put some black skelly parts in there. So yeah. Somebody was burned at the stake and then chopped up. That's what LEGO is telling the children receiving this set. It's also NOT OK. I know the movie was kind of scary already, but you didn't have to go and make it worse in a freaking toy. Creepy cut-off burnt limbs aside, your child can have plenty of fun with this cart acting out what happened in the graveyard after Harry grabbed the portkey and returned to Hogwarts. Little Graves Bouncing back into 'kind of makes sense' territory, we get two little graves. Like (almost) all of the builds in this set, they're designed quite well. Plus, they work for the scene since there actually were graves around in the movie! They were even large enough for Harry to hide behind. The funky design on the Fabuland piece on the left one is a sticker, fyi. That piece only appeared in light bley in this set, so cool. But wait, there's a play feature! Both graves open up to reveal ground above the ground, and a pair of very neat buried-skelly prints. Yes, prints! Together the printed buried-skelly looks quite cool. Just another example of the awesome parts in this set. Also note the big skeleton piece found elsewhere in white in those horrid 4+ Pirates sets. Abominable line, but some cool parts. Bigger Grave Still rooted in the 'makes enough sense' category is this larger grave or tomb-like thing. The frog is used nicely as a decorative touch on top. The design on the panel is once again a sticker, but a nice one. Excellent design and parts all around. Due to the SNOT for the panel for the front, the back looks a little yucky, but not horrid. You wouldn't really display this from the back anyway. You might have noticed that awkward black stick running through the grave. Play feature alert guys!!! Twist the stick in your fingers, and… Skelly surprise! Hey, this thought just dawned on me, but maybe it's an inferi! Reference to later Harry Potter lore for the hardcore fans, right? So clever on LEGO's part! Actually it makes no sense and plays into my theory that this set was originally a Halloween set that got scrapped. But PLAY FEATUREZZ!!1!11 Tom Riddle's Grave This big grave is obviously supposed to resemble the one in the film, but didn't quite work out. We could cut LEGO some slack and say that the designer only saw concept art and kind of mucked it up. The thing has some of the features of the movie one, like a robed skeleton with wings, though it's placed wrong. Another aside - but who the hell makes a grave with a big grim reaper statue anyway? That makes absolutely no sense in the movie. Though it sadly doesn't get the movie grave right, this thing does look neat and has great parts. So many 1x4 tan tiles, those big dark bley tile pieces, rounded parts in black, dark bley slopes, black chains - good stuff. It all comes together quite well. Again note that the designs on tiles you see here are stickers. The back has the same affliction as the previous grave shown due to the SNOT piece spacing. But see that handle? We've got another play feature on our hands! You can open up the grave to reveal… snakes?? Shouldn't Tom Riddle actually be in there, given that they get a bone from him? Or at least one of the skeletons? Ok whatever, I give up. Logic was thrown out the window long ago. Tree There actually were trees in the background in this scene, so this could make sense. But take a look at the extravagant nature of this tree. For one - it's huge. Literally so many pieces here. Second - so many animals. Did we need bats on every single branch? No, but we got them. The reddish brown 1x4 plate with arm down only appeared in this and the rereleased King Leo's Castle of 2006, by the way. More cool parts. Then we're back in maximum creepy zone with the guy who was NAILED TO THE TREE AND LEFT TO ROT. More grotesque stuff for no reason. Little House (on the prairie) Thing We shall conclude this look at the disparate parts with perhaps the most perplexing thing of all - this little building. Once again, the overall look of it is bang-on fantastic. Great color blocking, great shape. Not actually a perfect design, as we'll see, but just as a thing it looks great. So many good parts too - I'll let you look at the picture to spot them for yourself. Not much to see from the back, but it's just a nice little build all around. The key word is 'little,' though. A minifigure can just barely stand in there, and the windows aren't at the right level. So this is actually like a mini build. Forced perspective in a LEGO set? Maybe? A revolutionary idea never to be found in a set again because children couldn't handle it? We'll never know. There's more to it, though. First, the roof comes off (more delicious tiles allowing for easy removal). I wish that was it, but it's not. The floor comes out too (though you kind of have to remove the whole stair build to get the floor out). The floor is great because of tiles, but yep - more creepy skeletons missing limbs. And you're supposed to put some of their missing limbs in the trash can. I can't make this stuff up; it's in the instructions. Gross. WHOLE SET and CONCLUSION Quite a lot, altogether. It makes a very nice, spooky graveyard scene, though some bits are a bit too spooky and wrong like the random skeleton bits. This set is a real headscratcher. In a way, it's great - so many parts, including in rare and exclusive colors, and really great designs all around. From a design perspective, this set could be released now and fit right in with today's builds. It couldn't be released today, though, at least as it was. Or, if you got this exact set, it would cost USD 60 minimum. It's completely insane that this was actually supposed to cost USD 30. As an HP set, it's really not great. There was a graveyard in the movie, and a duel, so, yes, you can sort of re-enact that stuff with this set. It doesn't come with that many minifigures, though, and the ones you do get are not all stellar. Particularly Voldemort - or Crappyglowinthedarkmort. Harry really screams for a more concerned exp<b></b>ression. I get that the climax of the movie should be a set, but LEGO still made very odd decisions with this one. It looks like this set goes for a ton of money on Bricklink today, and honestly, it's not one anyone would need to go back and pick up. LEGO really did Harry Potter right in 2010/2011, and this set can't even have the nostalgia factor of the ones from 2001 because it's so bizarre. It's well designed, it's fun, and it's packed with goodies in the parts department, so if you lucked into it at the time, you made a great decision. At this point, I wouldn't say it's a must have for anybody.