I was never a fan of licensed sets. They have flesh minifigs that represent specific characters, which can limit the figures’ use in MOCs, plus they generally tend to be more expensive. However, lately I got a few licensed sets, and I have to say they’re not bad at all. Cavalry Building Set was one of them, and I have to admit that after opening the box, building the little scenes, and positioning minifigs in different poses, my opinion of the set is… (if you want to know, read through this review or skip to the end).
Basic info of the set
Set no.: 79106
Name: Cavalry Building Set
Theme: The Lone Ranger
Age group: 6-14 (or more)
Price: £11.99 / US$12.99 / 14.99 EUR
Links: Brickset, Bricklink, LEGO S@H (there’s nothing on Peeron yet)
The box is the smallest in the Lone Ranger series, measuring approx. 15.5 x 14 x 4.3 cm. The top part has a Disney’s logo and a profile shot of Lone Ranger from the film on a yellow background, making it easily distinguishable from all the other Lego sets on the shelves. The front of the box reveals all there is in the set, a shooting cannon, a chicken wing on the camp fire, Lone Ranger on a white horse with moveable hind legs, and assortment of different weapons.
Actually, there’s not much left to reveal at the back of the box. An interesting feature is how to load the cannon and shoot round bricks, in case you’re not familiar with this design.
One side of the box has a warning sign about the choking hazard with small parts, which is definitely informative, but at the age of 6 everyone should know about the dangers of small parts (and sharing them with their younger siblings).
Being a very small set, there’s only one thin booklet. It’s slightly curved from the packaging, and follows the design of the box with a yellow line characteristic of The Lone Ranger series.
Inside the box we find 2 polybags, the instruction booklet, and the horse I was actually buying the set for.
In polybag number one, we can find larger parts, including soldiers’ and Lone Ranger’s torsos and legs. In general, the contents of this bag are not very impressive, apart from the few plates and bricks, other parts are more or less specialized. None of the parts found in this polybag are exclusive to the set, except for soldiers torsos which are discussed in more detail later.
On the other hand, bag number two holds much larger number of parts, and is more interesting to look at. Most of the parts are common, some bricks, plates and specialized parts. The highlights of this bag are various accessories discussed in more detail later.
As I feel more at home in the Town sub-forum, the greatest potential I saw in this set was in its various accessories. Both the blue cavalry hats and the white cowboy hat can be easily seen as part of the street fashion in any Town layout, as well as the backpack and tan messenger bag. The flat silver frying pan and the battery/torch (actually, it’s supposed to be a telescope) are a nice addition in any house in Town as well.
There’s 4 of them in the set, a surprisingly large number for such a small set. On one side, there are 3 soldiers in uniforms. What I’m missing, is some sort of variation in the design of the uniforms to reveal different ranks of the soldiers. Other than that, I can’t point out any flaws. Considering the same rank of the soldiers, it’s nice to have different faces to distinguish between them.
The back of the soldiers reveals printed torsos. The creases on the jackets and the pouch on the belt are nice details.
The fourth figure in the set is one of the protagonists of the Lone Ranger series, the Lone Ranger himself. His torso is much more detailed than the soldiers’ and the print continuous on the legs, however it’s harder to use in Town, except maybe as a sheriff costume. Similar to the soldiers, the back of his jacket has some creases, and no other prints.
The build is simple and straight forward. I was actually surprised to see a label 6-12 years, as the build is almost too basic. It starts with a small camp fire. I actually like the simple design of it, with a couple of trans-orange flames used instead of round plates as it’s common in themes I’m more familiar with (such as Creator).
The second mini build in the set is the cannon. I’m not an expert on cannons, so I don’t feel qualified to criticise its design. What I like about it, is the black wheels (I haven’t had those in black before) and a rammer. Having a rammer in the set definitely adds another play feature. The amount of ammunition is not large, however, I’m pretty sure everyone can find extras in their LEGO collection.
The third build is a small barricade, again a very simple build. It works as a defence line for the soldiers, and can be positioned in different set-ups varying the angle (thanks to the hinge). The flag on the pole is a sign of the occupants of this mini barricade.
The Finished Product
The end product doesn’t look so small, as the mini builds would imply. Considering this is the smallest set in the series, and actually has only 3 mini builds, the scene looks full and offers different options to play with. The barricade can be positioned differently, so one can find himself either behind or in front of the barricade, enjoying a chicken wing or preparing a cannon.
The Final Verdict
I have mixed feelings about the design. It’s obvious (even from the set’s name) that the set was intended as an army building set. It’s great to see a small set with 4 minifigs. Minifigs’ torsos have nice printed designs on both sides. However it’d be great to have slightly different uniforms to reflect soldiers’ ranks.
Similarly to the design, the parts in the set don’t stand out in general, yet there are quite a few interesting accessories (the blue hats, the white cowboy hat, the backpack and the messenger bag) that can be used in other themes, as well as the highlight of the set – a white horse with movable hind legs. This is actually the smallest of the (only) three sets in which the horse appears, so this is a plus. In addition, the black wheels appeared in only three sets so far, and are thus a nice addition to every MOCer’s collection.
It’s a simple and straight forward build with no special or advanced techniques. Considering the age limit (6-14), I was a bit surprised to see such simple builds. Despite being the smallest set in the series, and having three simple mini builds, the set looks much larger when all the builds are displayed as a scene.
Playability is definitely the most important feature of this set. Offering three soldiers on one side, and Lone Ranger on the other, there’s plenty of characters to choose from for role play. There’s a lot to do as well, enjoying a warm meal, preparing a cannon, or being on a watch. In addition, positioning the horse in different poses can be a lot of fun. In my opinion, playability is the strongest feature of this set.
Minifigs: 8/10 The selection of minifigs is very nice for a small set, and the amount of minifig accessories is definitely in favour of the set. Lone Ranger is the star of the series, and it’s always nice to be able to get the main character in a budget friendly set.
Price: 7/10 It’s a small set, the cheapest in the series, and it offers a lot for the price, so it’s hard to complain about it. Finding the set on a sale is even better for the budget, yet as it is, it’s budget friendly enough to build a large army, get different accessories and a white horse.
Overall: 46/60 (77%)
The set is not outstanding due to simple builds, but it is for sure above average considering its design and what it has to offer. Whether you’re getting the set for the white horse, the soldiers or various accessories, it’s a nice addition to every LEGO collection. I got the set for the horse alone, and I found much more in it than I expected.