REVIEW: Room of Requirement

Set 75966 – Hogwarts Room of Requirement

Price: US$19.99 / €19.99 (DE) / €19.99 (ES) / £17.99 / AU$29.99 / 180 DKK / 239 NOK

The clock has ticked over to 1 June in this part of the world, which means in many countries the much anticipated new 2020 Harry Potter LEGO sets are now available (North America unfortunately has to wait another couple of months). I was lucky to find a few sets on a shelf early, so here is my first review of the 2020 sets. I’ve chosen Room of Requirement, which is the smallest of the new sets. Is it a must have set? Read on for the review…

Background

The Room of Requirement is one of those amazing places JK Rowling created in the Harry Potter books. I’ve previously described it in this post.

In Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, when Harry is in need for a place to train Dumbledore’s Army hidden from professor Umbridge’s watchful eyes, Dobby tells him about the Room of Requirement, describing it as:

“A room that a person can only enter when they have real need of it. Sometimes it is there and sometimes it is not, but when it appears, it is always equipped for the seeker’s needs.”

It has been covered in previous LEGO sets, in particular the 2007 Hogwarts castle (set 5378), which to a large part covered the room in a similar form as the new 2020 set – basically as a training room for Dumbledore’s Army (though it also had a vanishing cabinet at the top level).

The Room of Requirement from the 2007 Hogwarts set – Harry practicing stunning spells.

The 2020 set includes some nice minifigures and in particular two more Patronuses, which put it near the top of my wish list when I first saw the 2020 sets revealed. So let’s have a closer look at what we get this time around.

Box and content

The box follows the design used in 2019 (and 2018), with the misty dark blue background colour. The front of the box, underneath the logos, features a photo of the room of Requirement, with Harry Potter teaching Hermione Granger and Lune Lovegood how to cast the Expecto Patronum spell. The photo presents the set very well. A cozy fire is burning in the fireplace and a target doll is set up for practicing stunning spells on. We can see how that works when turning over the box.

The back of the box as usual shows the various play features of the set. For a small set, you would not expect that many, and there are really only three – the transparent blue hand shooters, that represent casting stunning spells at the target, the secret door revealing the entrance to the room, and a hidden trigger at the fireplace that causes Umbridge’s numerous proclamations on the outside wall to fall down (as it happened when the Weasley twins decided to leave Hogwarts for good).

As such, the large and relatively plain tan wall is dominating the back and it is not as visually attractive as the front. The top side of the box shows the included characters and some mini-builds. To some extent it is more interesting that the back side.

Inside the box you will find two numbered bags with parts, the instruction manual and a small sticker sheet. The sticker sheet is loose in the box, but was in fine shape when I unpacked it.

I’ve been waiting for this moment for months – let’s get building!

Minifigures

The set comes with three minifigures:

  • Harry Potter
  • Hermione Granger
  • Luna Lovegood

They all come with new torso prints, Hermione and Harry with a Gryffindor cardigan (closed or open) and Luna with a Ravenclaw vest and wearing her butterbeer cork necklace. The butterbeer cork used as a pendant was believed to keep Nargles away.

All three comes with dual face prints, showing angry/surprised looks when the heads are turned around.

I am tempted to say the set includes four minifigures, as there is also “almost” a fourth minifigure – a target doll used for practicing stunning spells (shown to the right below).

But the stars of this little set (would many say) are the Patronuses. We got Harry’s last year (a stag) in the Expecto Patronum set. In this year’s set, as shown above, we get Hermione’s Patronus, which is an otter, and Luna’s, which is a hare.

The noticeboard is another nice addition with the “remember Diggory” photo and the vintage photo of the original Order of the Phoenix.

The build

The main build itself is quite good considering the small size of the set, noting that with 193 pieces, it is actually a decent amount of bricks for a licensed set in this price range.

The first bag, in addition to Luna, her Patronus, and the noticeboard, gives us the bricks needed to build a wall with the entrance to the Room of Requirement.

As seen, sections of the wall have transparent blue bricks, which I think is meant to represent the large windows that were shown in the room in the movie. Here is the whole scene as shared by the Wizarding World of Harry Potter’s Youtube channel:

I like the “hanging arches” above the windows, but I’m not so sure about the transparent blue part, though it works okay on this side of the wall. Turning the wall around, you see a sliding door, hiding the wooden door that dominated the wall on the other side. I quite like sliding door idea. This secret doorway surely will keep Umbridge, Filch and Draco away (for a while).

But that transparent blue stands out here, and I wish it wasn’t visible.

The second bag includes Harry and Hermione, the target doll, and the bricks needed to build a fireplace. I quite like the fireplace.

The other side has a nice play feature. It has the wall where Argus Filch has been hanging up the many, many proclamations from Umbridge. They are an important part of the Order of the Phoenix and it is nice to finally see some of these included in a set. As it was shown on the back of the box, with a touch on the fireplace chimney part, you can make the upper three proclamations drop down.

Also note the pin holes at both sides of the wall and both sides of the fireplace for connecting the two together. Having the fireplace at an angle, breaks up the flat wall a lot, when connected.

But more importantly, it would allow you to connect both up with the other Hogwarts sets. The photo below shows some of the connectors of the Astronomy Tower, another of the 2020 sets. As seen, it allows connections to to the side (for other castle parts) and “inside” the castle walls too.

Conclusion

I really like this set. It has a great selection of minifigures (while Harry and Hermione have been seen many, many times before, the new torso prints are nice to create additional Gryffindor students) supplemented by the wall with the secret entrance and the beautiful little fireplace and the accessories like the noticeboard, proclamations and target doll.

The inclusion of the two Patronuses is a highlight of course, though I’d probably have bought the set even without.

The main negative point to raise is the use of those transparent blue bricks for the walls. As shown below, it works reasonably well inside the room, but I feel it doesn’t quite look like the windows they were (most likely) meant to represent. From the outside, it simply looks wrong, though kids probably would not care.

Overall, it is a minor point though as most would display it showing the inside of the room, and I am generally very pleased with this set.

It is worth highlighting the Hogwarts Students minifigure pack revealed a few weeks ago, which will give us Cho Chang from Ravenclaw and Hannah Abbott from Hufflepuff, who were also both members of Dumbledore’s Army and would supplement this set well. It also has Draco Malfoy, who would look great lurking around outside the room.

If the other 2020 sets match this standard, it is going to be an awesome year! Look out for more reviews in the coming weeks.

Till then, Build the Magic!

4 thoughts on “REVIEW: Room of Requirement

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