Lego’s Dungeons & Dragons Set Is One Hell of an Adventure

Mike Powers
Lego’s Dungeons & Dragons Set Is One Hell of an Adventure

Every once in while, Lego will get a crack at a collaboration it’s never done before and go all out like it’ll never get to do so ever again. Few sets in recent history have felt like that quite like the company’s big 50th birthday bash for Dungeons & Dragons. io9 gathered a party of one to take a crack at the Red Dragon’s tale, and found dungeons, dragons, and plenty more besides.

How long does it take to build Lego’s Dungeons & Dragons set?

Lego Dungeons & Dragons: Red Dragon’s Tale clocks in at a whopping 3,745 pieces—almost two-thirds the size of Lego’s epic-scaled Lord of the Rings Rivendell set from last year. Depending on your experience, the set could take you 15-20 hours over the course of a weekend, but a good aspect of the set is that it’s built in relatively modular steps: it can be broken down into the inn, the forest ruins, the dungeon, the tower, and then finally Cinderhowl the red dragon, so there’s natural stopping points if you get a bit square-eyed from sorting Lego bricks. Otherwise, slap on an actual play stream or two and get building.

Or just watch Honor Among Thieves like, 10 times in a row. It’s what that movie deserves.

How many minifigures are in Lego’s Dungeons & Dragons set?

Depending on what “counts” in your eyes, there are six main minifigures in the set. Four represent class and background archetypes from Dungeons & Dragons—complete with alternate heads to depict alternate genders, and in some cases, accessories to display different equipment loadouts—and two more represent characters in the “story” of the set (more on that later). But there’s actually a few more full minifigures beyond that in the form of three skeletons to act as minions and set dressing—and then of course there’s a few buildable creatures on top of that, too, so you’re getting a lot of characters no matter which way you slice it.

Is Lego’s Dungeons & Dragons set difficult to build?

Red Dragon’s Tale has a lot of small parts, and clever little moments of Lego engineering to compact a lot of small scenes and bits of design into a relatively tight space. It’s not necessarily difficult, but it is certainly fiddly in places, depending on how meticulous you want to be placing down foliage or stepping stones just so. If you’re not super familiar with Lego’s modern adult-focused builds, there’s nothing too particularly complex about any of the steps—and again, the nature of the set being able to be split into distinct parts makes it easy to create stopping points in your build process.

Is Lego’s Dungeons & Dragon set better for Lego fans or Dungeons & Dragons fans?

Red Dragon’s Tale doesn’t really do much new for seasoned Lego collectors—there’s a lot of fun techniques along the way, but nothing that’s particularly out there if you’re used to building Lego’s modern, large scale sets like this. The more overt push into deliberate fantasy almost certainly will have some Lego Castle/Medieval fans grumbling, but considering they’ve had some pretty excellent sets in the last few years, it’s fine to throw a Myconid or two into the mix here, and the set still looks “traditional” enough it could certainly slip into any collection of that line.

But Red Dragon’s Tale really shines for anyone with even a passing familiarity with Dungeons & Dragons—there’s tons of small details in the set that pull from across the game’s lore, and the story of the set focusing on an adventuring party going out from town and into the wilderness to delve dungeons and assault a dragon’s keep is really told well throughout the set. That’s even before you get into the actual real deal bonus for D&D fans: Red Dragon’s Tale comes with a downloadable digital adventure for 5th edition that lets players run a small session inspired by the narrative of the set, so you can build it, and then use it as a display piece for an actual RPG session!

How much is Lego’s Dungeons & Dragon set? Is it worth the price?

At a whopping $360, Red Dragon’s Tale is a lofty ask for fans. There’s a lot to love in the set, but a few frustrations (more on those later), but overall it’s a very solid build with a lot of fun details and Easter eggs, but there’s nothing that really stands out to make it a must-buy set right now. Well, there is one thing: a delightful “gift with purchase” buildable Mimic, but considering it’s currently unavailable in the U.S.—and you could only get it buying the set directly from Lego for a limited time—that’s really only one less reason to pick it up right now. It’s very good, don’t get me wrong, but if you’re not particularly interested in the theme, and with the huge amount of Lego out right now, it might be worth holding off for a sale down the line.

Click through to see more of our thoughts breaking down the set section by section—and plenty more pictures to boot.

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