Happy Thanksgiving/Thursday, everyone. With the Christmas holiday fast approaching, retailers and toy manufacturers are ramping up their offerings on sweet merchandise you can purchase either for yourself or loved ones. Our good friends at LEGO in particular have tons of great DC Comics and Justice League themed sets this year, ranging from smaller affordable builds to giant vehicles and playsets. With the release of the Justice League film this past week, LEGO have sent us a review set featuring one of Batman’s new vehicles: the Knightcrawler. The crab-like vehicle (which should not be confused with The LEGO Batman Movie‘s “Scuttler”) is the highlight of one of the film’s action sequences, and translates pretty well to the LEGO format. Plus the set features a Mother Box, which just blows my mind that this is the world we’re living in, guys.
The Knightcrawler Tunnel Attack set is catalog number 76086. It contains 622 pieces to construct the Knightcrawler vehicle, four minifigs, and a Mother Box. The pieces come in five separate bags, each labeled 1-5 for easy assembly along with the instrunctions. Also included are a sticker sheet as well as two plastic sheets of pop-out wings for the Parademons. The set retails for $49.99.
Batman, the Flash, and two Parademons are included as minifigs, as well as a Mother Box which I’m counting because they’re traditionally sentient and I think I’m funny.
Batman’s look is more in line with his BvS costume, so unfortunately no flip down tech goggles here. The detailing on the suit is nice, and he comes with a soft cloth cape. The head has two expressions: “Justice Stare” and “I Hate Crime Grimace.” Not a lot of variety, but I like the stubble. That’s a nice detail. For accessories he has a grapnel gun and two Batarangs.
The Parademons are pretty much identical, as expected. They look pretty great, and can wear either the collapsed wings or “flight ready” pairs. The veins on the wings are incredibly intricate and impressive from a design standpoint, especially against the two-toned coloring of the wings themselves. Like in my recent Nano Metalfigs review, I’m delightfully surprised at how great the Parademons look. In addition to the wings, each Parademon has a blaster that can fire studs.
The Flash gives the set a nice pop of color, if nothing else. His look in the movie translates pretty well to minifig form, with a paint application that never looks too busy. His helmet is a little bulky, which is to be expected, but it still looks pretty good. His head has a fairly nondescript “happy” expression and a goofy smile, so you know that Barry here is just excited to be a little LEGO hero. He also has little blue “energy blast” accessories that can launch out of his hands. They fly pretty far, surprisingly, and can simulate some Speed Force energy when you make the character run.
The Mother Box is… a box. Four pieces, with an intricate circular design stamped on the flat top. I’ve yet to figure out how to generate a Boom Tube with it, so right now the playability is pretty limited. Still, Mother Boxes are a plot point in a theatrically released movie and seriously that’s just insane to me.
The Knightcrawler itself is assembled in several main sections. The first is the cockpit and main body/fuselage of the vehicle. Even upon completion it’s still a pretty sturdy, cool looking build. I love the flip-down red windshield, and those turrets look pretty neat. There are quite a few pieces used here, but it’s far and away the most straightforward part of the set. Everything’s pretty symmetrical, using standard pieces for assembly. This is by no means bad, though, as it’s fun to put together.
It’s when you get to the “legs”/struts that things get much more complicated. I’m going to be honest, these were kind of tough and threatened to be tedious at first. There are a lot of small parts here, particularly rods and connecting bushes. There are four that you have to assemble, so eventually you’ll get really, really good at it. The first pass requires some trial and error, though, as the directions get a little confusing in how you attach the completed section to the main cockpit.
Once you figure it out, though, it’s easy enough to assemble and attach the other three legs. Props to LEGO for getting really creative with this design, as the Knightcrawler has a really unique look. I’m more a fan of simple, streamlined designs more often than not, but even I have to admit that the angular design work here is appealing in its own way.
I personally find assembling LEGO sets incredibly therapeutic (and I had some rough days at work when I built this set, so it was a welcome routine), and love the sense of accomplishment it brings. Quicker builds are fun when you just want to get the set together, but the more challenging and complex builds carry an even greater sense of accomplishment. That’s how I felt about this set. LEGO have provided some really great sets for us in the past, but the Knightcrawler vehicle here is probably the most difficult set to assemble, and therefore one of the most satisfying.
It’s all worth it in the end, as the final product looks great. I question the practicality and functionality of the vehicle itself, but this is comics. It doesn’t always have to make sense.
The final assembled vehicle rolls around really well, though it doesn’t turn easily. The legs are hinged, so you can actually simulate a sort of “crawling” effect with it. Like I said, not exactly practical or even possible, but it’s fun putting the Knightcrawler in different poses while trying to catch the Parademons. Batman sits nice and snug in the cockpit, and the turrets shoot transparent orange pegs quite a nice distance.
Overall, this was a really fun build. The vehicle design is unique and the assembly was challenging, and the inclusion of four different minifigs allows for some creative display or play. Whether you’re a fan of the Justice League film or just want a great DC-themed set to assemble, you can’t go wrong with the Knightcrawler Tunnel Attack.