Review: 60176 Wild River Escape

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View image at flickr

The UK and Europe often enjoy relatively good prices where LEGO City sets are concerned and 60176 Wild River Escape is a notable example of this trend, costing £12.99 in the UK which seems very reasonable compared with $19.99 in the US.

I was therefore drawn to purchase this set, not only because it offers good value but also due to the inclusion of a new bearded crook as well as a skunk which has only previously appeared in series fifteen of the Collectable Minifigures. The inflatable raft is also somewhat unusual so interests me as this variety of whitewater craft with twin pontoons has not been featured in a LEGO set, other than a rare promotional item, since 1994's 6665 River Runners!

Minifigures

The set includes a police officer and a criminal, both of whom include a couple of elements which have been introduced for the Mountain Police subtheme in 2018. Unfortunately, the yellow life jacket still has yet to be updated and the policeman looks rather awkward when wearing it, as shown below. I remain hopeful that the mould will one day be revised to better fit around a minifigure's neck as the current design is poor.

View image at flickr

However, in all other respects the figures are both excellent. I like the officer's sand blue jacket which includes zipped pockets beside a white police emblem and his legs are printed with two more pockets. These new components appear across the Mountain Police range while the crook features a few rarer parts, perhaps the most notable of which is the reddish brown hair piece which is new in this colour and includes some lovely texture.

View image at flickr

This hair piece has often been used for Pirates of the Caribbean characters and I am surprised that it works so well in a modern setting, although this is partially attributable to the unkempt facial hair printed on both sides of the head alongside angry and worried expressions. The fringed shirt looks great too, particularly in combination with the strap across the torso and the prison uniform beneath, although that does limit the versatility of the design. The crook comes with a paddle while the police officer carries a pair of handcuffs.

View image at flickr

The Completed Model

The police speedboat is fairly conventional in its design, using a 6x10 curved inverted slope to form the bow and a series of 6x4 double inverted slopes behind that. Nevertheless, it looks superb, with a sleek shape and a balanced colour scheme of blue, white and dark bluish grey. I particularly like the white sides of the craft and the stickers provide some attractive detail, although they are not vital to the model's appearance.

View image at flickr

A ridge runs through the centre of the deck towards the bow which is slightly unusual but it looks quite aerodynamic and helps to break up the studded surface. The windscreen is equally streamlined and feels appropriately large in relation to a minifigure seated at the steering wheel. Unfortunately, the cockpit includes no other controls which is a shame as there is a 2x1 slope that could have been printed with some dials. I like the torch accessories clipped to either side though and the elevated blue lights are perfect. There is also room to place a second minifigure behind the seat.

The flowing shape continues all the way to the stern of the speedboat, terminating at a large outboard motor which is attached using hinges so can be raised up, just like many outboard motors in reality. I think the yellow 1x2 plate with bar looks out of place but the black radiator grilles are excellent and a light bluish grey 1x1 round plate works well in place of a rotating propellor given the lack of space for such a feature.View image at flickr

The more unusual and interesting of the two vehicles is definitely the raft. I like its bright colour scheme and the curved pontoons look superb, although I wish there was a little more floor space as the reddish brown crate leaves very little room for the minifigure. However, the studs on top of the pontoons are useful and I like the few dark bluish grey elements that form the frame of the vessel as well as the 2x2 sliders underneath.

View image at flickr

Presumably the crook has recently escaped from prison and has come to the mountains outside LEGO City in the hope of recovering his loot which consists of three gems. These are stored beside a red crowbar in a crate and it would seem that some local wildlife has stowed away too, surprising the criminal as he attempts to escape! This skunk has not been seen since 2016 and looks marvellous, featuring the same black and white striped fur as in the Collectable Minifigures series along with a bushy tail.

View image at flickr

Overall

Smaller CITY sets typically offer a great deal of play value in relation to their size and I think this set is reasonable successful in that regard, including two sturdy models and a couple of minifigures as well as the skunk which may prove pivotal to the pursuit. The two watercraft seem poorly matched as the raft will surely be much slower than the speedboat, although I can imagine the police having more trouble in rapid waters like those shown on the box.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

However, the most appealing aspects of the set from my point of view are definitely the villainous figure and the skunk, both of which are brilliant. I like the hair in combination with the crook's bearded face and his new torso looks good too, although the same part appears in the cheaper 60170 Off-Road Chase. The skunk, on the other hand, is only available here at the moment and that alone might be a significant draw for collectors of LEGO animals who missed out on the Animal Control Officer Collectable Minifigure a couple of years ago.

I hope you have found this review informative. Let us know by liking this article and share your thoughts on the set in the comments below.

 

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18 comments on this article

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By in Denmark,

Wow. Overpriced in the US!

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By in United Kingdom,

This looks a very nice set, with the skunk adding to the play value. And between that, the bear and the big cats, it's a good time for anyone trying to improve their Lego wildlife collection.

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By in United States,

While I likely won't pick this up personally, I am pleased to see the skunk return. I remember NEEDING the 6665 River Runners as a kid, and playing with it for ages! Nice to see another raft and some activities outside the city!

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By in Canada,

Would have loved this to be a cheaper set with just the crook, skunk and raft and maybe some more accessories or an outcropping of rocks, even if it does take away from the play value. I don't care too much for the police figure or boat. I will definitely pick this up when I find it on sale.

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By in United Kingdom,

Slight correction about the raft being the first of its kind since the 90s — there was a similar one as an airline promo in 2008: https://brickset.com/sets/2230-1/Airline-Promotional-Set

Still, seeing this set did bring on some nostalgia for me since River Runners was my first set ever!

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By in United Kingdom,

I'd buy it just for the police boat,
I used to like the police hovercraft from 2015 aswel, shame it's retired now..

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By in United Kingdom,

@Aanchir - Thanks, I was searching the database for rafts and it seems we had missed tagging 2230 Airline Promotional set. I have updated the article accordingly.

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By in Canada,

Should be cheaper though. Doesn’t feel like you are getting a lot of stuff for your money

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By in United States,

Looks like another winner for the City series in 2018. Thanks for the terrific review!

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By in Australia,

Breaking news "Police in pursuit of Billy Ray Cyrus for crimes against Music?"

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By in United Kingdom,

This was the set I choose, to get a free #30356 Hot Dog Stand. Mainly for the Skunk! However, I will probably get all of this year's Mountain Police range after last year's disappointing rehashs.

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By in Canada,

City sets are becoming increasingly more expensive in Canada and this set is a good example; 126 peices for $25!!!! I know the Canadian dollar is bad but its not that bad!!!! Also, look at set 60173 Mountain Arrest, 303 peices for $80!! Even though it includes a bear it is way overpriced. Shouldn't city sets be cheaper because they are non-licensed?

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By in New Zealand,

Man, than life jacket does my head in every time I see it. Fix it Lego.

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By in United Kingdom,

I think yellow would have been a better colour for the raft. All I see is two giant hot dogs

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By in United States,

Nice little set, but a little overpriced in the US!

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By in United States,

I NEED that skunk piece, as I missed out on the Series 15 minifigure. But 20.00 in the US is poor value so I will wait and hope for a sale. I do like the crook minifigure, but wish LEGO would stop using the prison jumpsuit underneath every crooks printed shirt/jacket. I know it helps distinguish them as the bad guys, but I don't think it's really that necessary and kills their versatility.

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By in Germany,

Good review as always. What about 6665 River Runners? Tho that might have an ambiguous motor on the back.

Now time for the anuual rant.......LEGO REMAKE THE LIFEJACKET PIECE! PLEASE!

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By in Canada,

^To First Comment^

Overpriced in the US? I'd love to get it for $20. It's $25 here in Canada.

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