REVIEW: Hogwarts Magical Trunk

The Hogwarts Magical Trunk is one of four new LEGO Harry Potter sets due 1 March 2022. The set is colourful, and while to some extent similar to the buildable books we got in January 2021 in its ability to open it up and create minifigure-scaled scenes, there are differences too. LEGO has kindly sent me an advance copy to review. Here are my thoughts…

Set 76398 – Hogwarts Hospital Wing

Price: US$49.99, £44.99, €49.99, CA$64.99, AU$79.99, NZ$89.99, DKK 449

Hogwarts Magical Trunk is rather different from most other sets.

It will look well as display item, along with other recent sets such as Fawkes and Hogwarts Icons.

It also a playset though – somewhat similar to the buildable Hogwarts Moments books we got in January 2021 (with another two coming in this wave) and Newt Scamander’s Suitcase from 2019, and. Basically, you can pack them up hand have them on display closed, or you can open them and create minifigure scale scenes.

Hogwarts Magical Trunk differs in two ways. Firstly, you can create different scenes from the set, and different minifigures. Secondly, somewhat related to the latter, the minifigures are highly customisable, and so it the trunk. The trunk can both change colours to match your favourite Hogwarts House (similar to how you could change colours on the scarf in the Hogwarts Icons set) – and be decorated with a good selection of stickers showing iconic things from the Harry Potter universe.

Last weekend I sat down Sunday morning to have a look. Here is my resulting review…

Box and content

As usual, I first checked the box. The front shows the magical trunk, slightly open, with a few small models levitating out of it on a swirl of magic dust. In front of the trunk, we have a selection of minifigures ready to be sorted into houses, including both well know characters, and some very generic ones. Unlike normal sets in the Harry Potter theme, there is no banner in the lower left corner with the names of the included characters, as the idea is really you can build many different characters. And the ability to customise is indeed highlighted in the lower right corner.

That message is repeated on the back, which has the words “Build, Rebuild, Play” written at the top. Otherwise, this side of the box shows that you can recreate three different Hogwarts rooms (plus wherever your imagination takes you I presume).

Strangely, nothing on the back of the box mentions wizard card tiles. But as we shall see, one is actually included in this set.

Inside the box you find the instructions, five numbered bags with parts, a larger dark tan plate and two sticker sheets.

The sticker sheets are unfortunately loose in the box, and one of them was rather bend when unpacking. They look fine though when applying them. Given the size of the sheets, it would have been good packing them with the instructions.

The stickers are of the high quality you would expect these days, with the exception of the one showing the chocolate frog box (at the bottom right on the photo below), which appears blurred.

The large sheet with stickers to customise your trunk had been bend in the box, but the stickers were fine once applied

The instruction booklet looks great, as if your Hogwarts admission letter had just arrived. It is nicely bound, and does look exclusive, but once you open it you can feel the pages are much thinner than what you get in the “real” exclusive sets.

With that covered, let’s see what is in the bags…

Minifigures

Six minifigures are included. First of all, we get the excellent version of Professor McGonagall we got in the Hogwarts Moments – Transfiguration Class set. Her torso and dress are nicely printed on both front and back, and the combined hair/crooked wizard hat piece is simply amazing.

Beyond her, we get a nice selection of torsos to create students with scarfs/colours representing all four Hogwarts houses. And finally, we get a neutral figure – yet to be sorted into his/her house.

Diversity and inclusion has been promoted strongly by LEGO recently, and this can be seen in this set as well. The set includes a number of different coloured headpieces, with and without glasses, and hairs in many different colours too – including blue and pink.

As result, this is a great set to build figures representing different ethnicities, genders, etc and thus creating generic students – rather than just getting more versions of “the usual suspects”. But you can from the mix create a number of the well-known Hogwarts students, should you want to. Here are a few of my attempts:

And here is Harry along with some generic students that McGonnagall has just sorted into their respective houses.

The build

In the bag with all the minifigure elements, you also the parts to build the small models below. I do like the house point counter in particular, though the fireplace is also well designed.

Also note the sorting hat and the grey-blue owl with the spread-out wings – the first appearance of that owl mould in this colour (it is also found in the Hogwarts Hospital Wing set).

Finally, as seen the set included both a chocolate frog and a collectable wizard card tile. Inclusion of such are normally listed on the box, but as noted previously, not in this case.

For increased flexibility to create different rooms, most models can be used in different ways – in order to create different looking rooms. For example the point counter has a bookshelf sticker on the back.

Above, I’ve awarded a few extra points to Ravenclaw, and Gryffindor is behind (but I’m sure Dumbledore will award some last-minute points to fix that).

With the parts from the next bag, you can start building the trunk.

It is steady building, without being super exiting, though the handles add some nice looking detail and the lock (I’ll get back to that) some functionality.

The next bag is more of the same allowing you to complete the core of the trunk.

The fourth bag includes the parts to decorate the trunk. As shown here, tiles in different colours are included so the trunk can be customised to appears in any of the four house colours.

The last bag includes parts to build small models to recreate the different scenes, such as tables for the great hall (which can be rebuilt into student beds for their dormitories), banners and a couch. You also get to build a key with keyring for the trunk.

A cool feature is that the lock actually works – and I did find it amusing that the instructions had listed the “Alohomora” charm next to it, where it showed that the key can be turned.

Here is the completed box in Gryffindor colours.

And here it is, opened up but still packed for storage.

Finally, it is time to decorate the box with stickers. Generally, I try not to overdo such things.

With that done, let’s open it again.

As the box showed, the content of the trunk can be used to recreate three different rooms (plus wherever your imagination takes you). Here are some photos of the rooms. While the Great Hall scenes obviously represents all houses, different coloured pieces and appropriate banners are included, should you want to make a common room or dormitory for a different house than Gryffindor as shown.

The sorting ceremony
The welcome feast
The Gryffindor common room/dormitory

Conclusion

It is an interesting set, that I’m sure will appeal to many. Some will like the diversity component, others simply the fact that you get student uniforms for all four houses. Also, for those who have sets for display, the trunk looks pretty amazing by itself, thought it was smaller than what I had expected.

When it comes to play, it is great for little ones to take along on holidays to allow play while away (but pack it in a plastic bag then). Or for those who are space constrained. But those into building a nice big Hogwarts castle or more traditional minifigure sets may want to skip this.

It will be interesting to see if we’ll get more of this style of sets, for example in the expected mid-year wave. Time will tell.

Till then, Build the Magic!

(Note that this set was kindly provided by LEGO for review. The views expressed here are my own however).

You can check my review of the new Hogwarts Hospital Wing set here.

4 thoughts on “REVIEW: Hogwarts Magical Trunk

  1. Nice Review.
    I was planning on getting this Set anyway, but now that I see it, it is now a MUST BUY.

    Personally, I think I will make a Slytherin Common Room.

    Like

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