12 Grimmauld Place (76408) Review

This summer is going to be full of magic thanks to the newest wave of Harry Potter sets. The largest and most magical of these (in my opinion) is absolutely 12 Grimmauld Place (76408). This unassuming townhome is in reality, the hideout of the Order of the Phoenix. In the books & films, the Order is a group of brave witches and wizards that fight the evil forces of their world. For the film version, the home is hidden between two other townhomes which separate to reveal the entrance. It’s a great bit of visual magic and it is wonderfully recreated here in LEGO®️ form.

This is one of seven new sets in the Summer 2022 wave and I am happy to have the entire collection for review. These were first announced in early April with some currently up for pre-order on LEGO.com. I’m starting with 12 Grimmauld Place as I am sure it is at the top of many people’s lists. For an unboxing of the entire wave with set stats, please click on the YouTube link below. So grab a butter beer and get cozy while we check out this fun new build.

NOTE: This set was provided by The LEGO® Group to True North Bricks for review. This does not guarantee a favourable review and all opinions are my own. For a breakdown of the rating system, please click here.

SET SUMMARY

  • NAME: 12 Grimmauld Place
  • SET #: 76408
  • THEME: Harry Potter
  • COST: $149.99 CAD
  • BRICK COUNT: 1083
  • MINIFIGURES: 9 (8 exclusive new prints, 1 new character)
  • RELEASE DATE: June 19, 2022

QUICK REVIEW

  • VALUE: 76% (average-to-good scores for cost-per-brick and cost-per-minute, on par with prior sets)
  • BUILD: 88% (fun build with a clever mechanical element and nice details inside and out)
  • MINIFIGURES: 93% (fantastic all new prints on most characters, and a great brick-to-fig score)
  • ENTERTAINMENT: 92% (great set for play or display, fun for all builders and Potter fans)
  • OVERALL SCORE: 87% (a great new location for the HP collection with excellent new minifigs)

VALUE: 76%

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) will cost you $149.99 in Canada. With 1083 pieces at your disposal, this translates to a cost-per-brick of $0.14. As such, the set earns a score of 78% which is ever-so-slightly below the overall average of $0.13 and 80%. This is also on par with the average values for all sets reviewed to date. So while this isn’t a better deal, it’s still a good one. It’s also one of the better cost-per-brick values amongst the summer sets.

I built the set in just under 2 and a half hours (147 minutes) translating to a cost-per-minute of $1.02. At this value we get a score of 73% overall. Again, an OK score, one that can improve if you just take your time a bit more during the build. I’m apparently The Flash when it comes to building sets as I seem to get through them fairly quickly. Ah well, I am on a deadline here folks! Combining both scores together we get a final value of 76%.

BUILD: 88%

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) comes in a standard box with typical wizarding world flair. The graphics are bold and clear, as are the contents of the set and the fun mechanical elements. Casting an alohamora opens the box revealing 7 numbered bags, a 151 page instruction manual and a sticker sheet inside. Right away you’ll notice the instruction book is predominately white. And while that’s nothing of major importance, it is a fun change-up as most of the books to this point have been blue. Fun little twist right out the gate and I really like it!

A new design for the instruction manual – really clean and fun new look.

Being a location, you will rather faithfully build a typical London townhome, albeit with scaled-down detail. Despite that, you do get a really nice recreation with some fun designs and that wonderful mechanical feature. The build is done in a modular style so the flanking upper floors of the two ‘muggle’ homes can be removed for simpler access to other areas. The centre ‘wizards’ block is fixed in place. The architectural elements are rudimentary but make for easily recognizable features. Although the outside has the nice contrast and separation, the inside is purely the Black family home with all it’s crazy decorating and spooky charm.

Who’s your decorator?

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) lets you build out a few rooms as seen in the films – primarily The Order of the Phoenix. The kitchen and eating area have some nice details including the Daily Prophet newspaper tile with “The Boy Who Lies?” Above that is a small but charming piano build. And above that is the….umm, room of skulls? I mean hey, it’s a Wizards house, so, why not. To the left of the main build is an entry way, a small sofa and a bedroom with Gryffindor pennant. On the right we get another bedroom, a small area with household ‘stuff’ and coolest of all, the Black Family Tree room. The room is done with two large stickers, and looks wonderful! Lots of great designs and lovely attention to detail – definitely a highlight of the build.

Hidden Headquarters

Like it’s source material, 12 Grimmauld Place is hidden safely between two adjoining townhomes. A quick bit ‘o magic separates the buildings to reveal missing #12. For this brick-built rendition, the base features two wings connected by angled axle bars that simply push and pull apart. You’ll notice two lamp posts on either side, these aren’t just for decoration. Grabbing both lets you easily operate the mechanism for reveal. Each post is built rather seamlessly into the structure and make for perfect anchors. And although you can easily just push and pull from anywhere, it is best/easiest to use the posts.

Overall it’s a great build and exactly what you expect from this particular location. The techniques and parts are nothing innovative, but the finished product fits perfectly in the line-up and captures a famous scene really well. It could easily have been bigger or more ‘full’ but it’s still really well executed. There’s a bit of wobbly instability but nothing alarming. And it’s not as sturdy as you might hope for younger builders either. But in this case it’s not a strike against the set. High marks for this fun and clever build: 88%.

MINIFIGURES: 93%

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) brings 9 new minifigures to your collection. That’s a pretty great brick-to-fig score of 120, and a value of 95%. This is indeed a bounty of minifigures and certainly helps to justify a slightly higher price point. In this set we get Harry Potter, Ron, Fred, George and Molly Weasley, Kingsley Shacklebolt, Tonks and Sirius Black. Aside from Harry, each minfig is an all-new print. And amongst these 9 minifigures is our first ever Kreacher, the Black Family house elf. Minor points removed for a few characters not having leg printing or alt expressions, but these are still great and they earn a 92% score. Averaged together the 12 Grimmauld Place minifigs get a handsome score of 93%.

The Adults

Of the adult characters, Sirius gets the best new design with a swanky green pinstripe suit and black waistcoat. He looks sharp and is finally out of prison clothes haha. Tonks gets a nice full-length coat, plus an alternate hair colour. And just to make it more amazing, her alternate expression is a pig snout face – super fun! Kingsley is in his traditional blue robes which is a nice reprint of his CMF minifigure design. Both he and Tonks get a broom each for your aerial combat needs. Molly Weasley has a simple but nicely detailed orange outfit with legs instead of a skirt piece. And making his minifigure debut is Kreacher in his finest, filthiest rags. His accessory is a black umbrella. His face is very well done and easily recognizable – those shade-throwing eyes are hilarious.

The Students

Our intrepid cast of young, student characters includes Harry, Fred, George and Ron. Harry’s torso is a reuse of his blue zippered jacket, but now with adult size legs. The-boy-who-lived also gets a broom for good measure. The Weasley boys get all new torso printings with matching vertical stripes for the twins, and horizonal ones for Ron. Ron has quite the striped sweater collection now I think of it. And I love that the twins always have laughing/smiling alternate expressions. Although…if we get them in any Deathly Hallows sets that will not be appropriate anymore. Just saying. And just to annoy everyone you get Crookshanks the cat, but this time recoloured orange.

Everyone gets a customary wand and/or an accessory – most exciting of which is an all-new broom design. Our fancy new Firebolts and Nimbus’s are now two pieces: a stock antennae bar and a new mold for the bristles. This new mold is fantastic – you can even stand it upright! And included for your horcrux-hunting reenactment is a new printed 1×1 round tile of Slytherin’s locket. You actually get two in this set as one is placed in a bedroom. I gave the other to Sirius, because why not. Another new part is a printed 1×1 tile with an ‘ear’, which the twins use to spy on a meeting. It’s a fun accessory that you put on the end of a long recoloured flex tube. Overall a great collection of figs and parts.

ENTERTAINMENT: 92%

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) is a great play set with lots of fun interactive features. The reveal mechanic is clearly the main draw and element of this build. And I have to say it’s very well done with plenty of story potential. You have basically all the parts and characters you need to recreate the Order of The Phoenix film. Just find a spare Hermione, grab Lupin and Arthur Weasley from some other sets and it’s a party! Young builders will no doubt like all the various settings and parts for some imaginative fun.

The build itself is not complicated, but there’s plenty there to put together on your own or with help. It’s also a decent size and will look great as a display piece. So AFOLs definitely keep your eye on this as it will fit right in with sets like 4 Privet Drive (75968), The Burrow (75980) and Diagon Alley (75978). The interior spaces are a bit tight though and it is hard to put minfigures inside, let alone interact together. This is a necessity of the reveal mechanism as the bases of the flanking wings are triangular plates. But aside from that, this is a very fun set for AFOLs, KFOLs and Wizarding fans alike and I give it a score of 92%.

OVERALL: 87%

12 Grimmauld Place (76408) is an excellent addition to the LEGO®️ Harry Potter collection. It’s wonderful to get an a never-before-seen location in brick form, one that’s been long requested. The mechanics of the set work really well and you have plenty of new opportunities for imaginative play. Once again we get an excellent selection of minifigures, most of which have exclusive new prints. And those new broom pieces look fab, a nice improvement overall. The price point is still in a comfortable spot and average for the line so far. Aside from small interior spaces and some plain parts on our minifig friends, this is a great set that you should definitely check out. I give it an overall score of 87%.

Tonks making with the pig face.

And that is the first review in the Harry Potter Summer 2022 collection my friends! There’s more to come and I got my work cut out for me. I hope you can tune in for the rest. But what are your thoughts on 12 Grimmauld Place (76408)? Are you excited for this new location? What do you think of our new minfig selection? And what scenes/minifigs are you still hoping to see? Please comment in all the usual spots and let me know. Thanks for reading and until next next time, keep on brickin’. 🧱

-Frank

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