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As alluded to in this week’s podcast, I bought the Ghostbuster Firehouse LEGO set. When I first saw the pictures of the set late last year, I thought it was one of the coolest and complex sets that LEGO has ever made. It was also pretty pricey and it took some convincing from my fiancée for us to get it. While I am still stunned that I plunked down $350 on a toy (coming from our tax returns), I have to say that I don’t regret it. This LEGO set was incredibly fun to put together, and I am glad that we have this as a collectible.
The Ghostbuster Firehouse is huge. The box reports that it has 4634 pieces making it the third largest set LEGO has release thus far. In addition to the firehouse, the set comes with 12 mini-figures including all 4 Ghostbusters, Dana, Louis, Janine, and 5 ghosts (including Slimer). Despite the amount of pieces, the set ultimately isn’t that big when completed. It is about approximately 14x14x9 inches. While it might be bigger than many of the modular sets from the LEGO Creator line, it is still pretty compact to where it can be displayed on a shelf without taking up a lot of room.
So, where did all those pieces go? Here is the coolest thing about the set: the inside opens up and each of the three floors are incredibly detailed – almost to the point of excess. We get to see the garage with Janine’s desk and Peter’s office, Egon’s lab, the bathroom, the bedroom, the kitchen (with food in the fridge), and the photo lab (from Ghostbusters II). It is absolutely great, and I have to give LEGO credit for all the detail that highlights memorable moments and elements from the two Ghostbusters movies. Not to mention that there is an actual working fire pole that you can put the mini-figures on that have them slide down. This set was clearly a labor of love for those creating it to put as much as they did into the fine details that other sets likely wouldn’t have bothered with.
To see all the details, you can take out each floor individually. Or, even more fun, the right side of the building opens up (about a third of the set) like two giant hinged doors (see picture below). This gives you access to see all whole inside and lets you play Ghostbusters – which, let’s face it, you are going to do; don’t deny it). When you want to close it up, there is a little lock-like design that keeps the wall shut in place (although, you can still see the “seam” where the wall parts).
This set is just so fucking cool. However, there are some minor downsides. I’m not the first to make this complaint, but the firehouse set is not truly able to house the LEGO Ecto-1 that was released in 2014. While it fits through the door, it cannot fully “park” itself in there unless you remove the receptionist desk. And even then, you won’t be able to close/open the doors. This is a bummer, but I get why it can’t. For LEGO to house the car, the set would have to have been bigger, use more pieces, and go up in price. It was clearly a compromise that LEGO had to make, and I cannot fault them on that.
The other thing that I noticed about the set that is more of an irritation is that where the wall opens up, because it does slide against the smooth textured floor tiles, they will get scratched up every time you open and close the set. It isn’t super-evident at first glance, but if you are one that will get bothered by it, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to purchase some replacement tiles down the road (either from the LEGO Store or from online sellers such as Brick Owl).
This set is just amazingly awesome and was so much fun to put together. Every Ghostbusters fan will want one of these. The directions are very easy to follow in the 420 page instruction guide (this thing is massive). I worked on the set for about an hour or two each day for over a week. I didn’t keep track, but if I had to guess, it probably took me around 25 hours to complete. From what I remember, there was only one or two pieces missing from my set. However, I was able to make due by getting creative with some of the extra pieces.
The LEGO Ghostbuster Firehouse is great. I completed it about a week ago, and I am still admiring it. I would have loved this thing if it was just the exterior, but the interior just brings it to a whole new level. Now, I just have to find a place to display it!