LEGO Review: Pharaoh’s Quest Magnets – Jake Raine, Amset-Ra & Anubis Guardian

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I’m a sucker for weird and unique LEGO minifigures. It’s just a shame that most of the time they are far too expensive to obtain since many of them only come in larger sets. So when I spotted the Pharaoh’s Quest magnet set on sale, I figured I could finally get an Anubis soldier without paying an arm and a leg for the Pyramid set.

Unlike the old LEGO magnet sets, these figures are permanently glued to the magnetic bases! Supposedly this was because LEGO got in trouble for selling the Star Wars sets unglued and it constituted as them selling action figures, not building sets (it’s also the reason LEGO can’t sell just regular Star Wars troop builders), so to accommodate Star Wars, now all the magnet sets are glued together!

Getting them apart isn’t awful and certainly doable with minimal damage. For any collectors used to the classic boil-and-pop method, you’re in for a shock because this isn’t some simple move. The instructions on how do it can be found here. Just a warning, it’s time consuming. And for those of you with kids, definitely help them out with this.

Once the figures are removed with minimal damage, they’re basically regular LEGO figures again. I didn’t bother getting them to the point where I could easily remove the legs because the figures look pretty beat up on my test run.

First up in Pharaoh’s Quest Magnet set is the least interesting – Jake Raine. His figure is identical to the one that came in Flying Mummy Attack, expect instead of a helmet he has a black hairpiece. I tried getting his legs off, and ended up being successful but at the expense of the joints so now he’s wobbly. In addition to being wobbly, you can see on the back of his legs where the glue didn’t quite want to let go and ripped the figure.

The figure itself is decent; he’s wearing a bomber jacket that’s decorated with some pins and a large falcon head on the back. The face is smug with impressively stylized sideburns and stubble, along with a scar under his eye. His accessory is a gray revolver.

At first glance, I thought the mummy in the set was just the generic mummy figure in the line. From the neck down, he is but the neck up shows that this is actually the undead Pharaoh – Amset-Ra! The bottom half of the figure is decent with him wrapped in bandages on the front and back, while a navy wrap covers his legs. Around his neck is an ornate golden collar, but the real excitement for me his the head.

On one side of the face is a golden burial mask that looks suspiciously like the Pharaoh from Series 2, with a stern face and high cheekbones. The other side is an enraged reanimated corpse with burning red eyes. It is a bit weird since the bandages around his face don’t match the ones on his body, but either way, it was a pleasant surprise to get this head instead of another generic mummy. His nemes is ornate and cast in gold with navy stripes. For some reason, he comes with a gray scarab shield.

The final figure is the real reason I bought this – the Anubis Guard! I’ve had a statue of Anubis on my shelf ever since my girlfriend returned from Egypt, but my adoration of Egyptian mythology goes back a long time. Almost as long as my love of non-human LEGO figures!

The Anubis Guard looks amazing. His general design is similar to the mummy body, but much more elegant. The golden collar looks stunning with navy accents, but I really love the dark navy lines on the black body to show off his muscles. They’re subtle but look exceptional. His golden belt and navy wrap look great too.

The real allure though is the new jackal head. It’s designed to look similar to the mummy’s headdress and looks great. The tall ears and hanging decorations are beautiful and the paint just makes it even better. The red eyes look stunning. This is a figure who could easily be a god reincarnate or just a statue, it doesn’t matter. His only weapon is a gray scimitar.

Three sand yellow magnets are included and once the figures are pried off them, they work well but the fact that it took so much extra work to get them by themselves is just annoying. To help add some value, three identical map tiles are included but that just seems like adding insult to injury because those aren’t glued in place! At least the accessories aren’t permanently attached too.

I picked this set up on clearance for a little over $10, at that price; I’m still a bit disappointed. I do love the Anubis Guardian, but I have no idea what LEGO was thinking when it comes to producing a product that is so incompatible. I shouldn’t have to expose my toys to near boiling water for extended amounts of time just to be able to play with them. This is definitely the biggest failure I’ve seen come out of LEGO in a long, long time. At least with the keychain sets, you knew the figures were a single piece since you could hold them!

Written by jestergoblin

October 3rd, 2011 at 12:00 am

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