featarmoury

Review | LEGO Avengers – Iron Man Armory 76167

August 17, 2020

With another wave of LEGO Marvel sets hitting the shelves in the last couple of weeks, one definitely stood out as a must have for me (well, other than the Avengers Tower, that is). Like many of you, I’m sure, one of my favourite of last year’s Avengers Endgame sets was the Iron Man Hall of Armour, a set that not only gave fans a decent backdrop for Tony’s lab, a collection of great Iron Man suit exclusives, but also a spot to store/display your existing Iron Man minifigure collection. It’s a great set, and one that I almost purchased twice to extend it out….almost.

Pieces: 258
Set Number: 76167
Minifigures: Tony Stark, 2 x Iron Man Suits, 2 x AIM Soldiers
RRP: £24.99/$29.99

This month, however, came the solution I’ve been waiting for and while modelled as an independent set it’s very clearly designed as an extension to the aforementioned Hall of Armour. I am, of course talking about the newly released Iron Man Armory set.

With a couple of Iron Man suits, Tony Stark, a couple of bad guys, and a hot rod to boot, the modular section of Tony’s lab is just a bonus for the £24.99 price-tag. Given that the Hall of Armour set is twice the price, however, does this set work on multiple levels? As not only an extension, but also a cheaper alternative in it’s own right? Let’s take closer look.

Minifigures

Counting two exclusive Iron Man suit variants, the two AIM soldiers and the man himself, Tony Stark. the set technically includes five minifigures, which is incredible value for money in this price-range. Yes, this set does fall into the standard LEGO superheroes set hole of having very generic bad-guys, but if we take a closer look, the other minifigures are a LEGO Marvel collectors dream.

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Let’s start with Tony Stark, and while he may looks a little bland compared to other versions of the character, this is still an exclusive variant. The strangest design choice here, and it’s biggest let down, is the lack of chest piece. Whether this design is based on the comic books or the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it is very rare to see Stark without a chest piece once he becomes Iron Man and so along with the suits and set as a whole, this figure seems like something of a contradiction. It’s disappointing in a big way, because it instantly renders the figure fairly generic, something Iron Man/Tony Stark should never be, this lack of detail means that from the neck down this could be anyone.

There’s little detail to this, and if I was to guess, I’d say this is based on early Iron Man 1 Stark, which makes sense given the hot rod and what I’m guessing is the Mark II, the that missing chest piece just doesn’t make much sense.

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There isn’t much other detail to the torso piece, just crease lines from a grey collarless top, nothing overly exciting. Head and hair wise and it’s the same as other modern Iron Man figures with a standard bearded Stark face on one side, and the in-suit blue HUD over the fact on the other side.

All this figure needed was the chest piece and it would have been a perfect “just escaped from the desert” Iron Man 1 figure. Luckily, the next figure more than makes up for it.

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The glorious Mark II, well that’s the assumption anyway as the set doesn’t specifically say, but given the Mark I is included in the Hall of Armour set it makes sense. Continuing the recent Iron Man suit designs, the helmet is one-piece rather than the hinged design that could open. I’d be interested to know what other people’s views are on this, personally I prefer the helmet that can be opened, but I understand that the one-piece is probably far less of a choking hazard for younger LEGO fans. Even so, it looks fantastic, the silver coating and printed metallic face with just a hint of blue on the eyes. As an add bonus, the detail also includes rivets on the top and bottom, something you’d expect to see on a prototype suit without the polished finish, it’s a nice touch which continues on to the torso piece.

The torso piece instantly reminds me of the Cyberman from LEGO Dimensions, though on close inspection the Mark II isn’t quite as detailed as the Doctor Who character. Even so, you could easily stick that head on this figure and it wouldn’t be out of place.

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As you’d expect, both front and back of this is covered in print, with grey and silver merged with the black outline to produce a symmetrical armour-plated look that continues on to the legs. Due to it’s uniqueness, this is definitely my favourite figure of the set by a long way.

 

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Even after building the set, using it as part of my daily Instagram pics and displaying it for several days, I’m still feeling a bit ambivalent about the second Iron Man suit the Iron Man Armory set has to offer. On the way hand, look at it, the classic red and gold print detail and the suit extension that the Mark L showed off in Infinity War, it’s awesome. Then you compare it to the Mark L from the Infinity War tie-in sets and suddenly it looks like a cheap knock-off or a juniorised version. Realistically, I shouldn’t be too harsh on it, it is a unique variant with a very different design to that movie minifigure.

Outside of the one-piece helmet again, the most notable difference is the much more prominent gold plating on this newer suit. I always felt that the movie minifigures went a little too red on the suit designs with only subtle hints of gold – yes, movie accurate I suppose, but the Iconic look of the character comes from the inclusion of the gold as well as the red. This figure nails it wonderfully. This design, while brilliantly detailed, is far more rudimentary compared to the specific movie tie-in figures and instead focuses on the broader sections making up the layers of armoured plates rather than the intricate thin lines of detail we’ve seen before.

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The back of the torso is similarly detailed, though sadly is it complete covered by the large thrusters which are clipped on to a four-point neck piece similar to the Infinity War minifigure. In comparison, however, the arms are much shorter and rather than large blue flames pieces, we just get studs. Where this figure does one better, however, is again in the use of gold clips rather than black pieces, mixed with the red, it’s so much more iconic and seamless with the rest of the minifigure.

This minifigure will be a great addition to any LEGO Marvel fan’s collection, though it doesn’t seem to fit with where the rest of the set is trying to place itself in the timeline. That’s just me overthinking it, though.

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As has sadly become the standard for LEGO superhero sets under a certain price-tag, there isn’t anything to distinguish the two henchman from one another, they’re unique in design in one sense, but when you compare them to the chitauri, or the outriders, of HYDRA agents, these AIM guys really only have the AIM name and their colour scheme to fall back on in terms of standing out.

That being said, I love the bright colour scheme, it’s like these guys jumped straight out of the pages of a comic-book and the armoured vests have just enough detail to make them interesting, especially the gas tank on the back with works well with the breathing neck piece. The textured helmets are the big win with these figures, they’re great accessories with large side clips for a visor and a raised cross going across the top.

Despite a few minor issues, and this is me being very picky as a collector, rather than for play, this sets minifigures collection is fantastic for the price-tag.

 The Hot Rod

Hot Rod 76167
Anyone that’s seen an Iron Man movie will know that Tony’s inspiration for suit colour in the MCU came from his first love, a stunning black flamed 1932 Ford Flathead Roadster, the hot rod. While the car didn’t appear after phase one, it’s contribution to those early movies lived on. With that in mind, it’s a pleasant surprise to see a LEGO version show up alongside the Hall of A  inspired Armory.

The design itself is fairly rudimentary, I mean, let’s not forget this is a 250 piece set so don’t expect too much detail. That being said, the designer has done a fantastic job creating the aesthetic of the car with minimal pieces, and the only sticker-enhanced detail comes from the flames on the side and the license plate on the back.

Hot Rod Front 76167
There are no specialised pieces used for this build, just standard elements in yellow, red and black, but the impact of the trio of colours is striking. The underlying build is fairly standard for a car of this size, but when you start on the unique body shape, things get clever. There are plenty of established engine pieces that could have been used, but the model would have lost a lot of the colour which defines the vehicle. Instead, the designer uses a couple of red 2×1 hinges set at an angle with a 2×1 grill piece on top. It may not look like much, but it’s incredibly effective under the piece number constraint.

Hot Rod Back 76167
Similarly, the large flame creating exhaust pipes on either side of the front are recreated brilliant with ease using silver-pieced stud shooters…which will shoot out if you’re after a bit of addition play value.

The car isn’t the reason I personally purchased the set, but definitely a highlight in this price-range.

The Armory

Armoury 76167

Now, if like me you purchased last year’s Hall of Armour set then there’s one very good reason you’d want to purchase this set, the seamless extension it offers thanks to the modular design of the main build. The individual segments which house the suits are all built in the exact same way as the previous set, same design, same pieces. We do, however, get a few extras thrown in and they add a little something special to your expanded Stark Hall of Armour.

Starting off with one of the more subtle additions, the overhead translucent screens. Both utilise the same piece and sticker design of those use on Stark’s desk in the other set, but the supposed output on these screens is more about references certain aspects of movie Tony, with one showing the hot rod specs and the other displaying a fast food menu with a cheese-burger in the middle. It’s a nice nod to two things that are a big part of Tony’s life in the first Iron Man movie.

Armoury Back 76167

Speaking of stickers on the translucent pieces, this time all of the modular segments have the extra detail added, with information about the two specific new suits, named here as Prime-20 Armor and Prototype Armor.  There’s also stickers showing the details for the War Machine Prototype and the Blazer armour. I say it in every review I do, I’m not a big fan of stickers – especially transparent ones – but it works exceptionally well on this set and looks fantastic on the blue pieces, as you can see.

My favourite addition is the micro-fig Iron Man and what looks like a 3D printer. It’s a fantastic little build and with the tiny fig adds so much to the overall look of the Hall of Armour….or if you’re feeling really imaginative, just think what Stark could do with Hank Pym’s technology.

Armoury Microfig 76167

It’s the little details that make a difference here, and the additional accessories such as the micro-fig and the cool mobile phone printed piece as to that. The final piece of the set is a small accessory build for the lab, a crate labelled “Tony’s Toys” and wonderfully designed cheese burger.

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The burger utilises a design that won’t be too unfamiliar to Scooby-Doo fans, but this little background/additional playable build is that last piece in this great offering.

Overall

Overall 76167

So, having asked a question right at the beginning, is this set worthwhile on it’s own as a cheaper alternative to the Hall of Armour, the answer is a resounding yes. In addition to adding some great new detail and an expansion to the already great Hall of Armour, the Iron Man Armory set is just as great as a set in it’s own right.

Overall, it’s hard to complain with what you get for the price, the hot rod is a great addition and certainly adds a great deal of play value to the set. When the set really comes together, however, is the minifigure collection. Yes, it’s not perfect, the Tony Stark fig is a little bit too bland, and it would have been nice to see some variation between the two AIM soldiers, but the two new Iron Man suits are flawless, and for collectors, exclusive to this set.

My main intention for this purchase was as an extension to the Hall of Armour, but even with that mindset ingrained, it’s still very easy to see the value of this as a set on it’s own and I highly recommend it. It’s one of the better LEGO Marvel sets in it’s price-range, that’s for sure.

THE GOOD

  • The main build offers so much small, but great additional detail such as the micro-fig. 
  • The two unique Iron Man suit are brilliantly detailed. The red on taking more inspiration from the comics than the movies given the extra gold.
  • Great value for money.

THE BAD

  • Not sure where Tony’s chest piece has gone? The era the set appears to be going for suggests he should have one.
  • The two AIM soldiers are identical, a little variation would have been nice.
4.5

Summary

It’s the small details that make all the difference in this set, the little extras, whether in the main build or in the designs on the minifigures. For the price-range, you get a lot, not necessarily in piece numbers, but for the limited 200+ pieces, you get plenty to build, play with, and ultimately enjoy. This set works great as both an extension to 2019’s Hall of Armour, but also as a cheaper alternative in it’s own right. Highly recommended for any Iron Man fan.