My son absolutely loves lego and as such at Christmas and birthdays he will usually receive some sets to build. This Christmas a lot of the presents I purchased for my son had a bit of a Harry Potter theme and so when his Dad asked me what his parents could buy for him for Christmas I suggested the lego Hogwarts set as I knew it would be something that would be a hit.
My sons grandparents purchased the Hogwarts set from toys r us where it cost £44.99 but you can pick it up just under the forty pounds mark from amazon which includes free postage as well. There are two Hogwarts sets available from lego and this is the smaller of the two as the actual Hogwarts castle costs over £100.00 which I do feel is steep really even though I accept lego is expensive to buy.
The set came packaged in a large cardboard box and on the front of the box there were pictures of the set ready assembled as well as pictures of the seven mini figures which you receive with this set. The box also shows pictures of the main actors from the Harry Potter films so ties in nicely with them and you are advised that this set is suitable for children aged from seven to fourteen years. My son is six years old, seven in May, and I think he is probably just about the youngest age you could be to build this set. We did work on it together, with my son instructing me most of the time, but I feel had he been any younger that the bulk of the building would have been done by me which seems a little pointless really.
Inside the box you have full instructions as well as three separate bags which are all numbered for ease of use. With this Hogwarts set you actually build two small wings of Hogwarts as well as the exploding bridge and so the instructions and bags correspond to each separate section. Personally I always like how clear and easy to follow lego instructions are as they tell you which parts you need and when and so you can make sure you have them all ready. Over Christmas we have build so many toys which have ridiculously hard to follow instructions and so it is refreshing to see something so clear and well laid out.
Whenever my son and I build something like this we lay out the pieces on the floor from each bag as required and then we sort them in to the different colours which make them easy to find when we require them for building. This obviously does take an extra few minutes but I personally think that it is well worth doing because it just makes the whole process easier and it is meant to be a fun exercise, not one in which you are stressing out because you can't find a certain piece!
The Hogwarts castle probably took us around an hour to build from start to finish and when it was done I have to say I was really impressed with it as it features some key places from the films such as the room in which Harry goes to visit the mirror of Erised, Professor Lupins office and the astronomy tower to name just a few. The castle is smaller than I thought it would be but to be honest this isn't really a bad thing because it is easily stored on top of my sons toy box where it is at a level he can play well with it.
My son loves to play with this set and it holds together reasonably well to be honest. I obviously have had to tell him that he needs to take care and cannot be particularly rough with the set as parts would fall off. We have kept the instructions for assembly safe just in case we do need to assemble any parts again and I would certainly advise anyone else to do this too. The best part of the castle for my son has to be the exploding bridge because he can place characters on there and then twist a lever which causes the loose bricks to lift and make the characters fall over. He also likes how the two separate wings of the castle are on hinges and so they can be moved around, although he was disappointed they don't close in together. Personally I like all of the little touches which come with the castle such as a moving mirror of Erised, a blackboard and potions in one of the classrooms and such like because I think it just really adds to the set as a whole.
As I mentioned earlier you receive seven mini figures with this set which I think is a great amount, especially considering that other lego mini figures would cost around two pounds each. With this set you receive a Harry, Neville, Professor Sprout, Professor Lupin, Gregory Goyle, a death eater and Lucius Malfoy who can transform in to a Dementor. As far as I am aware you can buy other Harry Potter mini figures online but they come with ridiculous price tags for the most part-Professor Umbridge for example is almost sixty pounds on amazon! My son had to build the mini figures in the set and this is something that he enjoyed doing and he particularly enjoys swapping their wands and such like around.
This set has been a huge hit in my house with my son and one which is played with most days along side the other smaller Harry Potter lego set which he received for Christmas. I would certainly like to add to his collection for his birthday in May and so I will be keeping my eye on the other sets available. I would say that if you have a Harry Potter fan at home who loves lego too then you cannot go wrong with this set as it contains lots of figures, is pretty simple to build yet looks brilliant once fully constructed.
Thank you for reading my review!