Yeah I agree with you on the x-bows. I'd much rather TLG ramp up regular longbows instead.
As for the minifig, I really like the torso on this one. I never owned one as a kid, but I have managed to gather a few up over the years, and they are great.
In any small set, getting more than one shield was always nice, because then you could convert some of your generic torsos to be knights.