Review: 75952 Newt's Case of Magical Creatures

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75952 Newt's Case of Magical Creatures is an unusual set, simultaneously representing both an environment and a vital prop from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. An impressive selection of animals from the film are included too, ranging in size from a tiny Niffler which is formed using a single element to an excellent, 133-piece Erumpent.

The entire set contains 694 pieces so it appears to offer good value given its price of £44.99 or $49.99. Furthermore, four exclusive minifigures are included and the brick-built animals look brilliant so this should prove to be another fantastic addition to the Wizarding World range!

Minifigures

This version of Newt Scamander does not wear a dark blue jacket so differs from previous minifigures, instead sporting a dark orange waistcoat with a pocket watch. This looks marvellous when viewed from the front but the reddish brown design on the back of the torso looks somewhat awkward to me. Newt's double-sided head looks good though and I think this hair piece is the most suitable of those which are currently available.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

Jacob Kowalski wears reddish brown pads when approaching the Erumpent during Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and they looks superb over his dark bluish grey suit. I love the worried facial expression on one side of his head and the other appears stern, as one might anticipate given Newt's disconcerting comments about why Jacob needs to wear a helmet! The hair piece looks great too, featuring some lovely textured detail.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

Newt is accompanied by an adorable Niffler. The creature's black and medium nougat colour scheme matches the source material exactly and I love the beady eyes printed on either side of its head. This element is only available elsewhere in the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts Collectable Minifigures series so I am pleased to see another one here, especially since Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald will feature a whole family of Nifflers!
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

A different version of Tina Goldstein also appears in the recent Collectable Minifigures series and that minifigure is more detailed than this one, wearing a sand blue coat and a dark blue hat. Nevertheless, I appreciate this variation in design and the pattern on Tina's blouse looks fantastic when compared with the source material. Her jacket, on the other hand, seems to end abruptly as it does not continue onto the minifigure's dark brown legs.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

Queenie Goldstein is my favourite of these four minifigures. Her bright pink attire is very striking and really stands out among the other Wizarding World characters, most of whom are dressed in relatively muted colours. The smiling facial expression looks magnificent too and I love the nougat tone of Queenie's hair piece. All three magical characters come with wands while Jacob carries a black umbrella.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

The Completed Model

Newt Scamander's suitcase measures 16cm wide so is smaller than life-size, although it is still large enough to include plenty of detail. I like the tan reinforcements at each corner and the dark tan straps look great, despite not actually appearing in the movie. Two hinged panels are visible at the centre of the suitcase, revealing that there is more to this item than meets the eye!

View image at flickr

The suitcase also features a dark tan handle, two golden clasps and a plaque showing the initials of its owner, Newt Scamander. These details are delightful and I love the 'Muggle Worthy' lock setting which is faithful to the source material. Unfortunately, the other end of the case includes some Technic parts and exposed hinges which are required for the model's primary function, although I think they could have been hidden more effectively.

View image at flickr

Opening the suitcase reveals an impressive environment for the magical creatures and the minifigures, loosely replicating the Undetectable Extension Charm which is applied to the case in Fantastic Beasts and Where to find Them! The set measures 30cm wide in this configuration and includes habitats for several different animals along with a wooden shed where Newt keeps his magizoological equipment.

View image at flickr

Newt's shed serves as the entrance to the suitcase, featuring a black ladder and a small flight of steps inside. It bears little resemblance to the location from the movie, which was a taller structure, but I like the dark tan walls and the pitched roof looks realistic. Both sides of the roof are fitted using hinges so you can open them and access the interior quite easily.

View image at flickr

A selection of colourful potion bottles, a gold ingot and a photograph of Leta Lestrange are found inside the shed. This photograph is remarkably accurate to the film, including the same floral hair accessories as those worn by Leta Lestrange in the original photograph. Two more stickers form an attractive wood grain pattern on the front of the shed and some foliage occupies the space outside, adding a welcome splash of colour to the model.

View image at flickr

The grooming area features a sink, a selection of accessories and a dark orange mound, presumably representing either soil or animal dung. A chicken leg is kept in a bowl towards the right of this section and tends to rattle around inside the suitcase, although you can also attach it to a vacant clip beside a brush so it will remain fixed in place.

View image at flickr

Three small habitats occupy the other side of the environment. The hoard of pearl gold items evidently belongs to the Niffler while the tree in the corner includes articulated branches where you can place a couple of Bowtruckles. These tiny creatures are represented by bright green carrot leaves in this set. Finally, a nest is situated beside the tree, making ingenious use of a fur collar that was designed for Kraven the Hunter. I think pearl silver would have been a better colour for the Occamy egg but it looks good in white too.

View image at flickr

The serpentine Occamy is assembled around a series of dark bluish grey ball joints, permitting a great deal of flexibility which is useful for display. Its dark azure, medium azure and purple colour scheme is faithful to the source material and I love the avian head sculpt that only appears in this set. The bright orange eyes look lovely and you can open the mouth to reveal a moulded tongue inside.

View image at flickr

A pair of magenta wings are clipped to the Occamy's back. Their feathered texture looks fantastic and the wings can flap back and forth, just like those on the animal in the movie! Furthermore, the Occamy can change its size to adapt to the available space so you could display this model beside the suitcase or the minifigures as its scale suits either situation.

View image at flickr

Newt Scamander travelled to America in the hope of releasing Frank, a majestic Thunderbird who was abducted by animal traffickers but belongs above the plains of Arizona. Its glistening feathers are very attractive and the model measures 18cm in length so is constructed at an ideal scale in relation to the minifigures. The talons are individually articulated so can close to grip prey and provide support on uneven surfaces.

View image at flickr

The Thunderbird's head consists of the same two elements as the head of the Occamy, although their printed designs are very different. The metallic gold beak is spectacular and I love the feathers around the creature's eyes. A couple of white horns are attached to the back of the head, forming an attractive crest which looks superb when compared with the source material but does restrict articulation to some degree.

View image at flickr

Two stickers are placed on the Thunderbird's back, representing golden feathers. Additional texture might have been welcome here, although the curved slopes are helpful in creating a smooth surface. The white tail feathers are fitted to two pearl gold vines which look fantastic and the whole tail section can move to balance the weight of the head, much like the Thunderbird in the film and most real birds.

View image at flickr

In fact, the majority of magical creatures are related to Muggle animals and bear a close resemblance to them. The Erumpent's thick hide and prominent horn are somewhat similar to those of a rhinoceros, albeit considerably larger than its Muggle counterpart. This figure measures 13cm in length so seems slightly too small when placed beside minifigures but it is large enough to capture plenty of detail.

View image at flickr

The most distinctive feature of an Erumpent is the glowing mass situated behind its horn. This contains an explosive fluid which is injected through the animal's horn and it looks marvellous here, represented by a few trans-orange pieces. Unfortunately, the horn is not dual-moulded with trans-orange plastic but I still think the Erumpent's head looks brilliant on the whole, due in particular to its printed eyes.

View image at flickr

A pair of Technic bricks form the core of the Erumpent's body and these remain visible from certain angles when construction is complete which is disappointing and could probably have been improved upon quite easily. However, the legs look good and offer an impressive range of motion, featuring click hinges at each knee as well as rotating hip joints.

View image at flickr

Overall

This set has definitely exceeded my expectations! Combining two different scales in a single model is very effective and I think Newt's suitcase looks good in either configuration, although it probably offers greater display value when open. Furthermore, the minifigures are excellent and I love the animals too, despite a lack of detail in certain areas of the Erumpent and the Thunderbird.
View image at flickr

View image at flickr

My least favourite aspect of this set is an unfortunate result of its unusual scale. There is not enough room to actually place the magical creatures inside the suitcase so the set is not quite as portable as one might hope. Nevertheless, I would definitely recommend 75952 Newt's Case of Magical Creatures to fans of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, especially given its reasonable price of £44.99 or $49.99.

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.

This set was provided for review by The LEGO Group but the review is an expression of my own opinions.


You can read our reviews of the entire Wizarding World range here:

 

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28 comments on this article

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By in United States,

Definitely the best Fantastic Beasts set we've gotten. I'm really impressed by the Beasts, and the Minifigs are also really well made.

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By in United Kingdom,

I'm not a Harry Potter fan, yet this sets rather tempting to me which shows you its a good concept and design overall.

Thanks for the review, its help in my decision of if I should pick this up or not.

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By in Hungary,

In my opinion, the price was set a bit high. Of course, in retail shops over the Globe it means 65-70% price in the cheapest markets, which positions it well.

About design: The difference of the smooth animal heads and the blocky body/limb design makes me feel strange about this set. It's a skip.

//The other same theme set, the 75951 is much more elegant, more pretty. However, the retailer price reduction there won't help much, it's still a really expensive set.//

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By in Canada,

I have this set and think it's a cool idea. I find it difficult to pose the one creature and get it to stay upright otherwise no complaints.

Actually another good point made in the review is that you can't fit all the creature's inside the case which is to bad.

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By in United Kingdom,

My local tesco had this at £22.50 so obviously couldn't resist.
Love the figures especially Queenie Goldstein.

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By in Australia,

I may be mistaken but I think you assembled Newt and Tina wrong. Tina is meant to have the black legs and Newt the dark brown.

Thanks for the review!

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By in United Kingdom,

@Albus - Thanks, the photos have been updated.

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By in United Kingdom,

This ia an epic set, i love the birds, especially the thunderbird, beautifully constructed, and designed features overall,
They remind me of creatures you might find in elvendale..

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By in United States,

Normally, I don't care for this type of set, but I am amazed at what it has for a $50 price point set. First thing I thought when I saw it was--yikes, that's got to be at least $100.

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By in United States,

You recreated the original photos because you messed up the pants? Had it not been pointed out I wouldn't have noticed you switched photos at all. Most impressive!

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By in United Kingdom,

I have no idea whatsoever about the source material & I still want one of these

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By in United Kingdom,

I had mixed thoughts about whether or not this set would work, but now I have it on display, it looks fantastic. I don't think I've seen organic forms captured in brick this well for years!

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By in United States,

I bought this set, but have yet to build it. Too bad the beasts can't fit in the case.

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By in United States,

@Parsom...really? That's shameful, trying to promote a set that is even related to this one.

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By in Poland,

@monkyby87 Isn't related? Something bigger inside something smaller.

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By in Netherlands,

^ Then the doctor who set is also much better than this one.

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By in Germany,

@parsom: of course it isn't related. Totally different universe - Harry Potter versus Narnia
Plus imho I much prefer the set above versus your Ideas entry - no offense.

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By in Canada,

One of the few sets in recent years I wanted three of. Two down! **Newt, Deathly Hallows tent, Unikitty cake house edit**

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By in Poland,

@ Casper_van_hobbes
This is an interesting theoretical question...

@AustinPowers
So comparing apples to oranges isn't allowed, because they are from different geographical zones...
BTW, I guess that you didn't watch the movie posted there?

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By in United States,

I really like the idea of the suitcase becoming the shed, and while the suitcase mode could have been better (maybe tiled over?), I appreciate the effort that has been put into it.

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By in United States,

I have this set, and it’s so good! I really like the suitcase and the builds for the beasts are so much better than I’d expected! I definitely would recommend this set!

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By in Sweden,

I don't know anything about 'Fantastic Beasts' except for that it's been a movie set in the Harry Potter universe. But this set is very high on my want list right now, and this review has only confirmed this. I think it's a brilliant idea and the beasts look indeed fantastic!

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By in United States,

@parsom...You're missing the bigger issue here; you used a review of an unrelated set to self-promote your own set. That's shameful.

They still aren't related, and I agree, the Fantastic Beasts is better.

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By in Czech Republic,

I was very suprised when I saw the set for the first time. It offers so much playability - brick build animals (magnificient), suitcase / habitat, for a very reasonable price. I am a SW fan, but I couldn't pass this one.

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By in Poland,

@monkyby87 I'm knocked down

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By in Germany,

@parsom: I have to agree with monkyby87, you used a review for a set to promote your personal Ideas entry which isn't even related to anything Harry Potter. Plus, you state that yours is better, which in itself, while understandable, is bad behaviour.
It's like if there was a review say of the Millennium Falcon, and I post a comment stating that I think my Ideas entry of a Star Trek USS Enterprise D is better. That would be just the same.
Of course, Narnia is similar to Harry Potter, both are fantasy worlds (and I even prefer the Narnia-verse to the Potter-verse actually, but that's beside the point), but your Ideas entry simply is of a different source material.
Now if you had made an Ideas entry of another version of Newt's Case of Magical Creatures, and a better one than the official version, that would have been an entirely different matter.

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By in Taiwan,

The 75952 is like a group of rich suitcases with the zoo. It is a collection of exotic animals that are so addictive and attractive! ^^

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