On October 1, 2010, LEGO reintroduced the Harry Potter series releasing six sets with Hogwarts Castle being the largest set. It contains 1290 pieces and retails for $129.99, a nice $0.10/piece which is amazing considering it is a licensed set. There are previous versions of the castle although I will not be comparing them as I do not own any of them. The set will feature four buildings and eleven minifigures and a lot of small details that make the set a must own.
As mentioned before, the Hogwarts Castle set contains eleven minifigures depicting many characters from the movies: Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Lord Voldemort, Professor Albus Dumbledore, Professor Severus Snape, Professor Filius Flitwick, Professor Minerva McGonagall, Argus Filch, and two Dementors. Not listed as a minifig is a Knight that I’ll show later.
Harry and Hermione are in their gray Gryffindor uniforms. There is also an Invisible Cloak included for Harry. Lord Voldemort is wearing a black robe with a black cape. Professor Dumbledore is seen wearing his light blue robes. Professor Snape is wearing black robes and cape. Professor Flitwick is in his black suit and has the shorter legs which cannot move. Professor McGonagall has a very nice dark green robe with matching colored hat and cape. She has the sloped piece instead of legs that makes it look more like a dress. Argus Filch is seen carrying a key and lantern. Also included in the set is his cat, Mrs. Norris. The Dementors have no faces but shows only their mouths. They are wearing black hoods and a shawl-like cloth piece.
*Note* The broom in Harry’s hand is not included with the set.
Hogwarts Castle consists of four buildings, the Great Hall, Dumbledore’s Office, the Common Rooms, and the Astronomy Tower. All the buildings have a modular section which allows the them to be connected in many different combinations. The set can also be connected to the 2011 Hogwarts set 4867.
The Great Hall
The Great hall is the largest of the buildings and is the main focal point of Hogwarts Castle. The sides of the castle have red and blue transparent bricks to represent stained-glass windows. On the inside, there are two tables with benches on each side. On one table, there is a turkey and a plate of cherries and a croissant while the other table has a cake. Both tables also have goblets. Towards the back, there is a podium with torches on each side. There is also a spot in front of the podium for the Sorting Hat. On the ceiling of the Great Hall, there is a banner for Gryffindor and Slytherin with a chandelier between them. I wish the banners were printed pieces instead of stickers.
The next building we come across is Dumbledore’s Office. It is actually two different rooms, the trophy room on the bottom floor and the office on the top floor. The trophy room has James Potter’s Seeker trophy mounted on the wall. On the other side is a chest containing some trinkets. In the middle is a spiral staircase that leads up to Dumbledore’s office. There are many different colored potions around the office. In one of the cabinets, there is a place for a letter and the Basilisk fang. In the middle of the office is a table with a crystal ball and a copy of the Daily Prophet. There is also an actual magnifying glass to read the Prophet. On the top of the building is where the Sorting Hat resides. Right below it is the Sword of Gryffindor.
The Common Rooms
This tower of the Hogwarts Castle contains four floors. The bottom floor is the Slytherin Common Room. Inside is a green table with a copy of the Quibbler and rotating black chairs on the sides. Behind the table are two snakes attached to the walls. On the floor above is the Knight minifig standing on a rotating platform which reveals Tom Riddle’s diary. The third floor is the Gryffindor Common Room. It has a brown table with the Marauder’s Map and two red rotating chairs. Behind the table is a fireplace where Sirius Black shows up. On the top floor, we get the Owlery where three different colored owls are perched on. One funny detail here is the white studs represent owl droppings.
The final building of the set is the Astronomy Tower. This tower contains three floors. The bottom floor is the Room of Requirement where the Vanishing Cabinet resides. The other cabinet is in Borgin & Burkes of the Diagon Alley set. The middle floor is the Restricted Section of the school library. Inside the clear cabinet are three books locked away with chains. On the top floor, we get the observation area which has a telescope and a rat which I presume is Scabbers, Ron’s pet.
After looking through everything from the Hogwarts Castle set, there are many pros and cons of it. Again I’ll start with the cons to end on a high note. First, there are a ton of stickers especially the ones on the outside of the buildings to show the “bricks” of the castle. Another con of the set is that it is rather small. Yes there are 1290 pieces, and yes it is able to be combined in different combinations but I wish it was an actual castle. Why not make the whole castle a modular building? I can see why LEGO didn’t go in this direction. A reason is the cost of it would be way more than people can afford.
For the pros, there is a lot of playability with the set. Kids will have so many things to do especially with the high minifig count. Also, many scenes can be re-enacted using what’s given. The build was pretty easy and straightforward. It didn’t take that long to build at all. I would recommend this set because as a Harry Potter fan, I am happy to own something that plays a major part in the films. As LEGO starts to phase out the 2010 LEGO sets, it’ll be harder to find in stores and prices will certainly skyrocket in the future.