LEGO may think they've scratched an itch with the 3-in-1 Castle, but if anything, it's shown that they need to make more.
LEGO 31120 - Creator 3-in-1 Medieval Castle
Available from LEGO.com and LEGO Stores now.
About This Set
The LEGO Creator 3-in-1 Castle was released well and truly in the months of yesteryear. But that hasn't stopped people from collecting it, fusing it with another of the set, or ramping it up completely. Admittedly, I don't think the hype from this set has died down at all.
As with all Creator sets, most seem to be lacking a little bit, but lately, LEGO have seemed to have hit a good chord with their last two choices, being a pirate ship and now a castle- distinctly not City or Space.
Now, whether you already have one, have just got one, or looking to pick up another, the question remains as to whether this set is worth the hype. Would you be better off going to a second-hand market to scratch that medieval itch? Or should you grab as many of these whilst you can?
Well, that's the point of today.
The Creator Castle quickly hits nostalgia on the head, riding off the same nostalgia of the Black Falcons as the Medieval Blacksmith did.
The archway very clearly shows us a Black Falcon shield, the front and sides of the build give us dashes of yellow to really date the aesthetic back to the late 70s/early 80s, and even comes with a jail and working drawbridge, throwing me back into my childhood.
The build is technically made up of three distinctive parts, and we will go through all of them individually.
Built upon a bright aqua blue, the Castle makes an imposing first look, and swiftly meets the aesthetic of imposing, yet welcoming. To one side, we are given a small tree and flower build, and the other a small offshoot of the castle above some rocks. Which in turn is actually a toilet! Yes, it might not be obvious to some at first glance, but a small white roll of toiler paper sits beside the classic drop toilet. Medieval.
Also gotta appreciate the brick-built falcon that sits atop the build, staring off into the distance, contemplating its existence.
Not unfamiliar to long-term castle fans, the draw bridge uses a crankshaft attached to the side of the build as a way to reel in the chains, bringing our drawbridge up. To stop the drawbridge from dropping back down, a Technic mechanism simply drops down and locks the gear in place.
Outside of that, the front building is somewhat bare from the inside.
On the left-hand-facing side of the build is a blacksmith, which is easily attached to the clips hidden in the walls. It's worth noting that although both sides of the build can theoretically swap around, the castle cannot close due to these parts having differing shapes.
The exterior of the Blacksmith is adorned with brick-built chickens and rooster, a small archery target, and a large waterwheel made out of the newer curved window pieces. The waterwheel is actually a function play feature, like previous castle waves, where the rotation of the wheel hits down on a technic piece, lifting the other end with a hammer, to create a functional waterwheel.
It's always a welcome addition in my book, even if I've seen it four times before. Next to our anvil is a small forge, as well as a suit of armour and a small chest hidden underneath the staircase. It wouldn't be a castle chest without some goodies!
Inside the upstairs area of the blacksmith resides a small fireplace and ornate chair for our dear blacksmith to rest upon, after a hard day of work.
And just as a little extra, the Blacksmith has an iconic metal crow atop the building to show which way the wind blows.
Admittedly one of the more blander corners of the build, the Watchtower still manages to bring a bit of charm. Attaching on the right-hand-facing part of the build, the watchtower brings us, well, a watchtower, but also a small market build and even a jail!
The market build, albeit not all that fancy, manages to snuggly fit into the build, and you'd probably overlook it looking at the box. Pink cherries, apples and bread - all a medieval castle need to feed on, right?
Our little side jail comes with another unexpected resident, who unfortunately looks a little worse for wear. Fortunately for him, if any of his allies decide to come to his aid, all they need to do is pull on the tab on the exterior wall and it's away to freedom! Jailbreak!
The model also comes with two little other side builds, one being a rather simplistic well with frog, and the other being a brick-built dragon.
Our dragon comes with one pretty big flaw... But first, the good parts!
I love the simple design of the head, and clever use of the 3-spoke leaf piece to give that little bit more of character, and I love that LEGO has made the dragon using a nice mix of greens across the board.
The problem I have is that he can't stand up. AT ALL. Admittedly, when I first got him, he could easily stand up and hold a pose, but now, after a small bit of play alongside my kids, the clips on his feet don't retain the same level of friction.
I previously could easily stand him up like pictured, but as soon as I let go now, he just plonks forward, suspended by nothing but his flame.
The Minifigures in this build are not unique and have been used in other models before. I do always appreciate more Black Falcon knights to add to my armies, but I wish we maybe got one or two more for this. If you want to know what we thought about how they looked, you can look at our Blacksmith review here.
As for the remaining blacksmith, he easily looks like he could have come from a pirates theme - and the best part about him is that he looks like me! No kidding!
Overall, I really do like the set.
Is it a good castle set? Yeah, but not a great one.
LEGO fans have been dying to get their hands on more medieval stuff and if you don't believe me, you should look back on this article I wrote a while back about the fan vote for the anniversary set. It's worth a read.
I will, more than likely, go pick up another one of these sets. There are some amazing community smash-ups I've seen where people put this model and the other watchtower together, and it looks amazing!
If you're thinking about it, grab it. If you've got a ridiculous budget, get this and the blacksmith too. I assure you, you won't regret it.
Thanks for reading, if you enjoyed this please leave a comment below.
This article was written by Tim & Dannii.
Find them on Instagram at @legobuildingwithtimanddannii
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