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CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

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CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Bruce N H » Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:23 pm

Hey all,

Join the Classic Castle set review discussion. Please post your opinions on the set play ability, piece selection, design, etc. Which sets stand up to our catapult of critique and which ones crumble in shame!

This week’s set is 9474, The Battle of Helm's Deep.

This large set depicts what may be the most iconic location in the Lord of the Rings - at least I have seen far more MOCs based on Helm's Deep than on any other location. It includes the Hornburg and a section of the Deeping Wall. The set includes eight figures, four from each side so you can stage an evenly matched battle. On the side of Rohan the set includes repeats of the Aragorn and Gimli figures and two exclusive figures - Theoden and Haldir. On the side of Saruman the set includes four Uruk-Hai, one of which is an exclusive - the 'beserker'.

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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby rogue27 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 6:32 pm

I thought this was a great LEGO castle. It contained a lot of smaller parts and more intricate building techniques.

Some cool details:
The curved stairway/ramp
The arrow slit windows
The faceted corners on the gatehouse and how they alternated sideways cheese wedges every few rows to maintain strength
Curved walls coming off the gatehouse
The wooden structure above the gate
The use of sand green and brick-textured parts to keep the walls interesting
Expandability with the wall module from Uruk-Hai Army


This is an awesome set with a lot of great parts that is fun and interesting to build. It also looks very playable with the exploding wall and an okay number of figures.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Purple Wolf » Fri Sep 05, 2014 7:25 pm

I don't own this set but I have seen it in person and I must say it's awesome! The amount of detail in the set is really appealing to the eye plus the wall blowing up is really well hidden. The figs with the set is okay would of been nicer if there were more men of Rohan but at least the figs are still good. The price of it wasn't to bad for a licensed set. If ever given the opportunity to get it I probably would.

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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Sir Erathor » Fri Sep 05, 2014 8:15 pm

My favourite ever LEGO set, I love it. Except for the tiny secret door that a minifig can't fit through, everything is pretty much perfect. Honestly, it's amazing.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Brickninja » Fri Sep 05, 2014 10:23 pm

I don't have this set, but it looks amazing. Lots of epic parts, cool minifigs, a great castle made without panels, etc.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Lil_Curt » Fri Sep 05, 2014 11:48 pm

Great set. I got mine thanks to AKbrickster. Always on a look out for a good deal to pick up another one for parts. As above this set has a lot going for it :)
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby BlackenedPurple » Sat Sep 06, 2014 2:08 am

There is a lot to love with this set, as it definitely feels like a more advanced castle build compared to the usual fare we get (not counting S@H exclusives like MMV or Joust). The curved walls and ramp, the break up of the Big Grey Wall Syndrome with different coloured and textured brick bricks, the SNOT techniques on the back tower, the brick-built ladder, the rocky base (with no BURPs), etc. all were once only seen in MOCs. I also appreciate the civilian aspect in that the main interior space is a banquet hall. The figs and accessories all have highly detailed printing yet are generic enough (and not cartoony) to easily be recycled if LOTR isn't your cup of tea.

Another awesome feature of this set, and which harkens back to the Black Falcon/Crusader/Black Knight days of yore, is how 9471 Uruk-hai Army seamlessly attaches onto Helm's Deep and provides not just more castle, but bolstered both armies as well. Of course, it wouldn't be a modern LEGO castle without catapults :roll: , but at least they're small and not in-your-face on the set (and they aren't flick-fire missiles, either :) ).

I did not collect much LOTR but this one was a no-brainer when it came out, at least for me, anyway.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby andylego99 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 8:57 am

Possibly the best Lego castle set ever IMHO. interesting build techniques, useful parts, looks great, good playability, nice figs, good value. I got 2 :-)
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby DraconisTerrena » Sat Sep 06, 2014 8:09 pm

I really liked this set. It was pretty pricey, but given that it's a licensed-theme set, there's really no helping that. It was a very cool build with a lot of useful parts, a good minifig and accessory count, and several parts that seemed to be (at the time of its release) exclusive to it. It's the only one of the LotR line that I don't own duplicates of due to its price, and I liked the design enough that I actually kept it assembled. 10/10, because the only downside (the inflated price) isn't really something that TLG can do much about.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Justin M » Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:40 am

I picked up two copies of this set, that's how great it was. I'm going to keep this short and sweet - make more sets like this LEGO! :D
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby TeufelHund » Mon Sep 08, 2014 2:10 am

I think this is certainly one of the more interesting Lego castles out there - it certainly uses a fair few advanced building techniques and the absence of a lot of big panel pieces is appreciated (save for the rear feast hall, that is). The castle walls are woefully short of defenders but I guess there's not much you can do when you have to take up precious figure allocations with named characters.

The worse thing about this set is that there is an awful lot of depth to it meaning it can't be displayed on a shelf easily.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby mitah » Tue Sep 09, 2014 3:53 pm

Best - Lego Castle - Ever (well, at least of the last 15 years)

I have about 3-4 of these as parts donators and 4 more unopened ones in storage. Every new Lego castle line will be measured against this castle, and I don't think they'll surpass it anytime soon (juts look at the current line - ugh)
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby Athos » Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:51 pm

This is the best of the widely available LotR sets. I say widely available because Orthanc is really good too. Its also one of the best castles we've had for a really long time. Great pieces and a neat looking model. I am kind of kicking myself for not picking up two when I found them at 30% off.

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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby nanuck95 » Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:48 am

I agree that this was one of the better LotR sets and arguably one of the better stand-alone castle sets of late. As a parts pack, this set was fantastic, with lots of light bley bricks (and only a handful of wall panels), and all those sand-green 1x1 bricks are great highlights that I'm sure will be used a lot in other castles to break up the walls a bit.

I'm a bit torn on the figures. The orcs/uruk-hai are generally great figures, and it was nice that they included a unique one to mix up your army a bit. Theoden is especially well done, the detailing on his armour/helmet/shield is really cool and Haldir is a nice addition. Gimli and Aragorn were repeats and a little bit of a disappointment. I can understand why Gimli is the same as his outfit didn't change much throughout the movies, but it would have been nice to get a different version of Aragorn other than "Weathertop-Aragorn". Overall, the printing and detailing on all of them are pretty top-notch.

The playability of the set is pretty high, and I like that they made it somewhat modular to allow you to add more wall sections if you want, but it doesn't feel incomplete without more sections. It was nice that they added the little throne-room with stuff in there so there is stuff for your guys to do when they aren't fighting off legions of orcs.
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Re: CC Set Review: 9474 - The Battle of Helm's Deep

Postby BoradorIV » Sun Sep 14, 2014 9:06 pm

This is a great set. Compared to some MOC, but... Well, they had a lot more limitations, and frankly, they did an outstanding job with them.

The build is great. It's got all the details it needs without breaking the price point. A lot of great parts, lots of great figures... Sure, I'd have liked someone other than Aragorn or Gimli... But Haldir and Theodon more than make up for that.

Spectacular. I only wish I had it.
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