Playmobil Dragon Rock, (5840)

I like the Knights theme well enough, it’s not my favorite theme like the Romans, but I have quite a fair army of knights and barbarians. I have many castle pieces from different half-castle sets (old school Steck system naturally!) I have the executioner, and the Merry Men’s Feast, but I never bought a dragon. The traditional green Playmobil dragon just didn’t do it for me. I though this eyes looked silly. In fact, since the current knight theme castles are incompatible with my castle pieces, I’ve drifted away from the knights theme in general, but this set made my head whiplash back like I was watching the Women’s Olympic Beach Volleyball (go USA).

I love the look of this dragon. The red is a great color, and he has a nice scale pattern on his skin. His head and eyes are drastically different than the old green dragon. He looks evil and menacing. He also has something new ball joints on his wings! That’s right! I had never seen ball joints on any playmobil anything (man or beast) before, so this was cool. The ball joints allow you to spread his wings in front of him, or fold up against his body (so he can go through his cave). Notice how big he is in comparison to Nessie.

At first glance, I wish he had a bit more articulation, especially in the head/neck region, however there is an opening jaw which is more important. You can get his head to pitch up and down by moving his legs. I keep forgetting, these are for little kids, and the more articulation, the more prone it is to pieces breaking off. So considering that this dragon passed Playmobil’s tough safety standards, I’m pretty happy. Some people online have reported that the wings have popped off when positioning them, but they apparently go right back on.

I also like the two knights you get with this set. There are plenty of historically based knights in armor, I like the different imaginative liberties they take. One of these knights in particular has bat wings! They look very menacing, but they’re a soft rubber, so you won’t be poking out anyone’s eyes. They can rotate up or down, which is a nice touch. Just a tip, his armor is part of his body, not snap-on like other armor. You also can’t twist his wrists. I like his axe though.

The other knight has sweet lightning bolts on his face. He has a (new piece?) clip on his back for holding the spear (I like the tassel on there too). He’s fits well with the set, but is not the “star” like the bat wings dude. He has bare arms with furry cuffs (like a Chippendale!) and a shield. I love the look of his outfit. Someone online pointed out that he looked like he was late to a KISS convention.

I lest not forget the Catapult that shoots soft rubber fireballs (awesome) and the horse. The horse’s saddle has a handle, (perfect for hanging onto in hurricane force winds), the catapult is the the same one from 4278 Roman Catapult. (but that one had 3 fireballs). It shoots pretty well, simply by pressing down sharply on the front lever. If you don’t have it, it’s great, if you do have it, now you’re ready for battle.

Overall I think the value on this set is perfect. $20 gets you a lot. The Rock formation is a good cliff/cave playset, I do wish it had a few System X connectors or something so you could connect it to other sets, but it’s a good size, and it makes a great display. Between some landscaping, a horse, two knights, a dragon, some weapons, and a flippin’ catapult, you’re getting some great play value out of this set. It plays well on its’ own (if this is your first knight themed set, or first playmobil at all) but it will fit in great with other playmobil sets.

As you may know, there are two types of stores to buy playmobil. There is “mass” which is Target/ Wal*Mart/ Toys R Us, and then there is “Specialty”, which are the mom and pop type toy stores in your neighborhood. This Dragon set is of the “Mass” variety, and I picked it up at Target last night for $20. It’s a great value for the pieces you’re getting.

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