This is another one of those sets... You're browsing eBay and there it is - an odd name, reference number (3274) and matching HIGH price.

Fortunately there is (almost) always someone willing to buy a couple of sets for an e-friend, so... here we are...

My first comment is about the exclusivity of this set (maybe it'll be released later, like the birthday clown and magician, but who knows - there are rumors of it being out in exclusive stores in the US later, and being re-released in Germany).

Exclusive SUCKS. Big time. A GREAT set, one of those that you look at the cover pic and feel like buying, and it's only available in one store-chain, or something like that. Exclusive only has one good point, and that one is for people who can get their hands on them fast enough - to make a HUGE profit on eBay. That has come in handy for me a couple of times as well - it helps raise some more playmomoney, right? :) (of course one can argue that if all sets were reasonably priced, the sum we'd need would be much smaller...)

Anyway, whining aside (for now).

This set is exclusive to the Woolworth stores in Germany, a 25th Birthday Edition. The black and red main colors are apparently the store's colors as well.

Not only is the color scheme beautiful, the wolf designs are great and make them even more unique, with the exception of the fat guy, who is closely related to a man in the Dragon Tower (3665) and a Viking (3156 - Viking Rowboat). It's definitely a great set to get parts to make some new figures.

The horse included is an old-style horse, maybe because that armour-thing doesn't fit on the new ones (though I suppose they'll work on it, if the plan is to replace all horsies).

The cool colors are extended to stuff. The chest, chair and weapons-holder are nothing out of the ordinary, except they're black.

The same goes for the building itself. It reminds me of an extended Wizard's Workshop (3839), with a lot of decayed parts. But here the dark reddish brown color used for the wood (floor and door) make all the difference. The building is beautiful (I think I'm over-using the word).

I suppose the different color may make it a bit hard to combine well with the rest of the assembly castle, but personally, I prefer the variety.

Needless to mention such a great building is assembly system, not made with the lame-for-buildings system X (but I think that will make another article all by itself... later).

Another cool detail is the shields - we get several, with two different forms, and all with the menacing wolf (always loved the shields, so they are a very welcome addition to my evergrowing collection).

Now, the bad news. I've been noticing this through the years. When painted sets first showed up, I was extremely happy, especially since I seem to have an innate ability to put the stickers on crooked, no matter how hard I try. And in the beginning, it was perfect. But more and more the painting is sloppy. It's smeared, one of the colors is out of place, and there are dots of the colors used where they shouldn't be.

Unfortunately, this is not a problem exclusive to this set. It happens a lot these days. :(

Here, as a perfect example, it can be easily noted on the wolf painting on their chests, and the red dot on the blond guy's arm. Please, can we have a little more care with this?

Another painting related problem is the Chinese guy. I first noticed this with the Black Queen special (4591). It was a small set, a WOMAN, great looking and Chinese. I immediately bought a bunch. I figured Chinese people are always welcome (there aren't enough Chinese/Indians/Blacks in the playmoworld), and women even more.

To my GREAT disappointment, the face is printed on. Yes, we went WAY BACK in time, to ancient klicky history, and the eyes and mouth are painted instead of molded. Which made me unable to remove that awful weird thing around the eyes. I'd really love someone to explain to me what in Hades that ugly thing is supposed to be.

Anyway, the point is not only the face is painted on, it's mispainted. I took a picture of the guy with a blurred face. It also illustrates the mispainted wolf. I mean, if it was MY job, I'd think he's great, but for an original playmobil® klicky... AGH.

Ok, enough of the mispaintings rant.. Unfortunately, I'm sure the opportunity will present itself again.

The box picture, though it's great (as I mentioned), and it's one of those that makes you wanna buy it on the spot, has a mistake - the guy on horseback is only wearing half his armour. The left arm piece stayed home, I guess.

Maybe I'm too demanding, but I find these little things hard to overlook at a professional level.

Now, regarding the set itself, there are a couple of odd choices...

The first one is the archer - his rugged look, with a three-day beard doesn't really go well with the girly hair... (but of course, I'm always needing women's hair, since a LOT of the loose ones I get come with the triangle-cut style, and needs to be replaced).

Then there's a missing or wrong weapon - the big sword doesn't fit in the belt - so we either need an extra one that does, or the big one replaced.

Finally, the choice to include a piece of kryptonite (another thing I never figured out what it really is) as a trunk filler is bad... I mean, some more golden junk would be MUCH MORE welcome, especially neck pieces and crowns... but even plain chunks would be better.

Uhm...

I feel I went on and on into the bad stuff on this one a bit too much...

I don't want anyone thinking this set is a bad choice - it's a GREAT set. The picure really speaks for itself, and further praising is... well... not needed.

So, if you get a chance, get one - or better yet, get a couple!!

Queen Tahra, June 2002

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