Announced with tremendous fanfare at LEGO Con, 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle is a massive LEGO Castle that weaves in every great thing about LEGO Castle/Kingdoms and pays homage to all the great Castles before it, in a supremely impressive and modern package.
I had the honour of reviewing this set early, and as a fan of Vintage LEGO, and Classic Castle, this set was everything I dreamed of, and more, and just might be one of my favourite LEGO sets of all time.
Celebrating LEGO’s 90th anniversary, a fan vote saw resounding demand for all things Castle, and LEGO well and truly delivered one of the best castles of all time.
Read on for my full review!
See below for regional pricing and links:
- 10305 Lion Knight’s Castle [US] – US$399.99
- 10305 Lion Knight’s Castle [AUS] – AU$599.99
- 10305 Lion Knight’s Castle [UK] – £349.99
- 10305 Lion Knight’s Castle [EU] – €399.99
- 10305 Lion Knight’s Castle [CA] – CAD$499.99
Special thanks to the LEGO Group for providing this set for review
10305 Lion Knights’ Castle – Set Details
Name: Lion Knights’ Castle
Set Number: 10305
Price: AU$599.99 | US$399.99 | £349.99 – Buy from LEGO.com [AUS] [USA] [UK]
Exclusive to: LEGO.com / LEGO Stores initially
Theme: LEGO Icons
LEGO Designer: Mike Psiaki, Milan Madge, Ashwin Visser
Release Date: 3 August 2022 (VIPs), 8 August 2022 (general release)
At 4,514 pieces, this is well and truly in biggest LEGO sets ever created territory, and a rarity for a non-Star Wars set, so you know LEGO means business.
Here’s a look at the instruction manual, and you will be delighted to know that there are no stickers included in the set. Hallelujah.
You’re treated to a walk down memory lane. If you’re a fan of Classic Castle, these sets that they’ve curated, detailing the evolution of LEGO Castles, from the original Yellow Castle, to Nexo Knights to the current 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle is a wonderful read.
Here’s a look at the design team – Mike Psiaki, Milan Madge and Ashwin Visser, as well as some trivia on how they’ve modernised the Lion Knights sigil.
And here’s a look at the back of the manual which features the rich sunset hues that will evoke some nostalgia for old LEGO Instruction manuals.
The set is absolutely bursting with minifigures, with 22 in total. LEGO have not held back in this department, and it just feels right to have not only a large number of Lion Knights, but also peasants, some Forestmen, and a small contingent of Black Falcon Knights as well.
Classic Castle staples like the skeleton and even a surprise appearance of Magisto round out the minifigure lineup.
First up, here’s a look at the Lion Knights, who make a triumphant return and feature all-new highly detailed torsos and printed legs. The red, blue and yellow are just glorious to behold, especially when they make up almost half of all the minifigures in the set – it’s superb that you’re almost getting a small army of Lion Knights ready for conquest.
My favourite minifigure in the set has to be Queen Lionne, the warrior-queen of the Lion Knights. Unlike other monarchs, she isn’t content with reigning from the throne, she’s clad in armour, wields a sword and is the first to charge into battle.
I am also delighted to see the return of horse barding, and I believe t
his horse is also a new colour – appearing in dark orange for the first time.
Update: I was wrong about the horse, it was first made available in 60327 Horse Transporter. Thanks to Hyperion for the heads up!
I absolutely love the idea of Queen Lionne – not only does this set send a really progressive message, but we’ve never had a warrior queen character in LEGO Castle, and she is so incredibly bad-ass, and is one of the best designed medieval minifigures with her golden visor and cape.
Reflecting her royal bloodline, she has an exclusive and unique torso and printed legs, which you can see beneath her armour. She also comes with a hairpiece and crown, to swap out her helmet.
If that weren’t cool enough, she also has a paper cape, with the Lion Knights’ sigil printed onto it, which just elevates her to a whole new level of awesome.
Here she is on her mighty steed.
LEGO have come a long way with Queens, and I must say, this Warrior Queen Lionne will go down in history as one of the most-loved Castle characters.
Here’s a look at her Lion Knights. If you notice, you’ll see that many key knights and soldiers are female.
The female soldiers are really cool too, and match Queen Lionne’s warrior queen status, and again, sends a great message to boys and girls. I love the idea of an all-female Queensguard, and here you can see some of their faces.
Here’s the back printing on the Lion Knights.
Old meets new! Here’s a comparison between the old Lion Knights from 6080 Lion King’s Castle, just to demonstrate how far printing standards have come.
Up next, we have a small contingent of Black Falcon Knights. Black Falcons were re-introduced last year in the Medieval Blacksmith, and then with their own 31120 Medieval Castle, so it’s great to see them make an appearance here.
There is a Black Falcons Knight, who has his own horse with Black Falcons Barding, a herald, and a squire who has to lug around all their stuff.
One interesting thing about these Black Falcons is that they all have black helmets – the previous Black Falcons all had silver helmets, so I’m not sure if this is a splinter faction, or if LEGO have decided that black is a much better choice. Personally, black makes a lot better sense, and looks so much better and fits thematically too.
Here’s a look at their faces, and back printing.
With his oversized load to carry, the Black Falcons squire sure seems like it’s inspired by Patsy from Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
This set was already great for re-introducing horse barding, and I would’ve been very happy with just Queen Lionne’s, but LEGO have also decided to give us a Black Falcons barding as well, which looks immaculate as you can see.
Very, very, very happy with the Black Falcons barding.
Up next we have a small selection of peasants, that roam around the keep. I really like that they brought back the headscarf for the lady in green, and this is a fine way to bump up the minifigure count, while still remaining relevant.
It does seem that the Lion Knights rule over a peaceful time, so these peasants are mostly going about their day tending to livestock, making food, or operating stalls within the castle.
For animals, we get the new Medium Nougat Cow (first seen in 60346 Barn & Farm Animals), a lamb, as well as a white dove on the cart that’s being pulled by the cow.
It’s a decent number of animals, but I would’ve really liked to have one or more chickens, some rats, and a goat. This would’ve really been the perfect set to reintroduce the goat but I guess they didn’t want to overshadow just how awesome of a set this is.
The Wizard Magisto also makes a return, albeit in very unassuming robes. There is no printing at all, and he sports a bushy new beard, but blue wizards like Magisto have been a staple in the more mystical LEGO Castle sets, so it seems right for him to be here.
Here’s a look at his face – which is pretty much just Santa Claus’ face.
Curiously… in the manual, in one of the little factoids which contain trivia in the set… it suggests that Magisto has come back in a body, after doing without for 28 years.
Did he die? Is he reincarnated? Did he possess some old peasant? Very disturbing the more you think about this sentence.
And here’s a comparison with the original Magisto, which you may remember from sets like 6020 Magic Shop. I do wish he had some printing on him, especially a pouch which has been a staple with Magistos throughout the ages.
And last but certainly not least, everyone’s favourite Castle faction – the Forestmen! After making a triumphant return in 40567 Forest Hideout, it’s great to see 3 Forestmen included in the set – we get a male, female and a young girl all garbed in Forestmen green.
Here’s a look at the back printing. I wonder what they’re doing here…
The build of 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle was nothing short of breathtaking. This is a LEGO castle true and true, but upsized and benefiting from the plethora of new parts, and techniques that you’d expect in a 4000+ piece set in 2022.
There’s a lot of classic LEGO building here, by which you stack bricks on bricks, with little to no Technic save for a few gears here and there.. it’s just old school LEGO bricks with some absolutely genius techniques.
I was particularly impressed with the techniques employed to get all these cunning angles done, and the entire building experience felt like a whole new level of LEGO model building had been achieved.
There is clever technique after clever technique, and so many cool things done for the sake of aesthetics that will blow your mind away.
My advice is to take your time with it. I built this set over the course of 3 days (rushing through it, while sick) but you could easily get a week’s or more worth out of it if you take your time.
Here’s a look at the completed Book 1, which assembles the keep and left-hand section of the build.
And here’s book 2’s build, which forms the main castle, and entrance.
Because the build is split into two books, you can build this together with someone else, with each person focusing on one build. Once both halves are complete, you bring them and snap them together to create the Lion Knights’ Castle.
Here’s a look at the back and front and this is so satisfyingly massive. The build is jam-packed with details, and while it looks incredible from the outside, with cunning angles throughout, the interiors are also filled with stuff, giving this set a very dense vibe.
There’s just so much going on, and as you build the set, you’ll encounter all sorts of great little details hidden in every nook and cranny – like this gorgeous fountain and harpischord.
It almost feels like a treasure hunt, where after building, you’re encouraged to come back and savour all the little details.
Before we get to the inside, let’s check out the exterior, which has high walls, and these brilliant slit windows that make it look like a proper reinforced castle that’s almost unassailable.
There’s some lovely foliage around, which include raised sections (likely to mimic raised baseplates) as well as these new dark green trees introduced. The foliage really ties the entire model and structure together, giving it a wonderful organic and whimsical feel.
There’s a massive Forestmen tree on the side, you know it’s a Forestmen tree because of its black trunk and bark.
Out the front is this insanely beautiful arched window, as well as the Lion Knights shields on the wall.
And on the towers, fly flags bearing the Lion Knights sigil. So glad to see these make a return too.
Here’s the walkway in, which has a raised profile to deter attackers and make it easier for castle defenders.
If unwelcome guests show up, the drawbridge can be raised, and you can also drop the portcullis which work beautifully and satisfyingly.
The back of the Lion Knights’ Castle opens up like a dollhouse, featuring plenty of rooms and chambers that you’d expect from a castle. It’s a really neat play feature and I love all the details packed into it, and there isn’t a room that feels wasted or pointless – they all serve a purpose.
On the top level in the open area, there is a small armour where the Lion Knights can pick their preferred weapons and spar against one another. I really like the open space here, which is a really believable touch.
Fittingly for a medieval castle, there is also a privy! Love that there’s even a roll of toilet paper, suggesting that they aren’t really that barbaric.
There’s a stable for Queen Lionne’s horse.
Right at the bottom is the Lion Knights’ treasure horde.
Of course, there’s a dungeon where Mr Bones lives.
There’s a kitchen, complete with an oven and a long table set with all sorts of food.
There’s more armour and storage inside.
There’s Queen Lionne’s bedroom which has a rug, comfy bed, and even a writing desk.
Beneath her bedroom is a banquet hall, with a large dining, and most importantly, printed shields on display. If these sigils and logos look familiar, you might recognise them from 375 Castle, which is a lovely nod to the heritage of LEGO Castle.
There’s also another nod to 375 Castle – the child’s room has a small brick-built micro version of the castle, AND a working door which I found to be really smart.
Oh and that water wheel? It’s connected to a mill to process grain!
And yes, it works as well!
Over on the outside, in the outer castle walls is an open-air section with some stalls.
I love how well this arch and ivy is done. It’s the little details like this that catch my eye every time.
In more homages to classic Castle, we have this great Tudor-inspired building, with one of the best thatched roofs I’ve ever seen. Simply inspired building techniques on show.
Oh and last but not least, remember that Forestmen tree? The cunning Forestpeople are always hiding in the shadows… and there’s a bit of a secret here.
Tada, sneaky Forestmen hideout carved into the Castle walls!
Oh and we’re not done yet, there’s also a little mini-game that the designers have left where you’re meant to find all these different coloured frogs scattered throughout the castle! It’s a really fun and playful feature and I love everything about this.
What I liked:
- This is the Castle set of your dreams
- Absolutely top-notch building techniques
- Plenty of minifigures
- Queen Lionne and the Lion Knights are great
- Play features work incredibly well
- An epic display piece
What I didn’t like:
- Magisto doesn’t have printing
- Is quite expensive and might be out of reach for some people
10305 Lion Knights’ Castle has instantly become one of my favourite LEGO sets of all time. I’m a big fan of Vintage LEGO (I get so much more satisfaction from my vintage collection than my modern collection), and a big Castle fan, so this in essence is my dream set.
The designers Mike Psiaki, Milan Madge and Ashwin Visser have done an incredible job here, taking a LEGO Castle into 2022, and infusing it with insane amounts of new techniques that will impress even the most seasoned builders.
The build was exquisite, and did remind me of old school LEGO, because you’re mostly stacking bricks on bricks, and the end result is jaw-droppingly cool.
This set is a perfect homage to the LEGO Castle theme, and Castles from the 70s, 80s and 90s so if you’re an old soul, you’ll enjoy all the little throwbacks, Easter Eggs and references. Just the thought of one set having Lion Knights, Magisto, Black Falcons AND Forestmen is just unheard of.
The minifigures are superb as well, and I’m pleased to see LEGO not holding back here. The idea to have a Warrior Queen as the leader of the Lion Knights is inspired, and adds so much lore-wise to this set an to the overall LEGO Castle mythos.
If you enjoy Castles, you probably don’t need me to convince you that 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle is a truly special set that celebrates everything great about LEGO Castle, augmented by modern building techniques and elements.
Even if you don’t have an affinity with Castles, this is a really fun fantasy set, and if you didn’t grow up in the Castle Era, or like me, could not afford large LEGO castles when you were a kid, you’ll want to start saving and making space for this, because this is everything you could ever wish for in a LEGO Castle set.
While the set’s high pricetag might be a barrier to some, this is a 4000+ piece set, and there aren’t teeny tiny elements here, you’re getting a LOT of LEGO and a lot of useful grey elements to boot, as well as 22 minifigures, so I think, all things considered, this is really good value. Expensive, but does not feel like a rip-off.
I have to give this set a perfect 5 out of 5 score. This is everything my 8-year old self would’ve dreamed about having, and so much more.
A wonderful, ambitious and genre-defining LEGO Castle that’s a fitting way to celebrate LEGO’s 90th Anniversary.
Rating and score: 5/5 ★★★★★
Build  – So many cool techniques, and you’re constantly building different things, keeping it fresh
Real Value  – While expensive, you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck, from minifigures, bricks to barding
Innovation  – Absolutely unreal techniques employed in this set
Coolness  – This is the ultimate LEGO Castle that has no comparison
Keepability  – A fantastic celebration of all things castle that’s one for the ages.
Thanks for reading my review of 10305 Lion Knights’ Castle and I hope you enjoyed it!
What do you think of the Lion Knights’ Castle? Let me know if you’re picking one up in the comments!
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Special thanks to the LEGO Group for providing this set for review