LEGO Dreamzzz 71461 Fantastical Tree House [Review]

Today we try to shake off our summer daydreams to return to the LEGO Dreamzzz theme with a look at the second-largest set released so far, 71461 Fantastical Tree House. This represents the heroes home base in the Dream World – their “dream landing” – and in addition to the alternate build choices core to the Dreamzzz building experience, the treehouse has lots of flexibility in how it’s arranged. Here’s our review of the set, which contains 1,257 pieces, 7+ characters, and is available now for US $109.99 | CAN $139.99 | UK £94.99.

The LEGO Group provided The Brothers Brick with an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

Unboxing the parts, instructions, and stickers

The front of the box follows the template for this wave of Dreamzzz sets. It shows off the first of the two build options, with some reddish-purple, lighting-laced clouds showing the advancing influence of the Nightmare King. The back shows both build options, in this case different versions (and locations) of the three treehouse rooms.

Inside are 13 numbered bags, one unnumbered bag containing some longer vine pieces, the instructions, and a modest but pretty packed sticker sheet.

The instructions feature the illustrations we’ve been so taken with throughout our DreamZzz reviews. The villain character introductions are particularly great. KraaTOOOM!

The build

Other than Mrs. Castillo and her backpack, there are no quick accessory or vehicle builds here – we jump right in to the treehouse. The bottom floor features a finished interior with a tiled floor and an oven with a tray of cookies in to bake, which … seems not the best fire safety for a treehouse? Tiled floors is definitely a pretty unique treehouse feature in our experience. The diagonal cross-section gives an early impression that you could combine two sets to make a full tree, though ultimately that won’t work without a decent bit of renovation. The tray of cookies is cute but it falls out of the oven at the slightest movement.

The exterior features an assortment of mushrooms with a sign denoting prices for different kinds, along with… blueberry sauce and mustard mushroom condiments? There’s also a shovel, presumably to aid in mushroom harvesting. Oh, and azure and purple condiments as well. It’s a bit of an odd vibe, especially given that selling brightly-colored mushrooms and those mystery containers doesn’t come up in the 20 episodes of the TV show that have been released thus far. Though, to be fair, the show also barely shows any details of the Treehouse. Given that you have to be invited to someone’s Dream Landing, this does imply that it’s Mateo, Izzy, Cooper, and Logan who are selling the mushrooms… probably best to let this go the way of a Disney property that changed the script after a set was in production.

The second floor interior has a minor gag but one your reviewer thoroughly appreciated – there’s a nickel hidden under the removable couch. Better search those cushions for more change!

The next few levels of the treehouse provide some of the interior spaces for Mateo and Izzy’s rooms, continue with solid technic bracing to keep the tree sturdy up through its full height, and involve a lot of SNOT (studs-not-on-top) bricks in order to smoothly finish the front corner of the tree. You can see some of the sideways studs with layered plates, which are then covered with 2×2 baby bow slopes, below.

The top of the treehouse starts adding limbs with all the different varieties of brilliant blue foliage, making this set pop. There’s also a crow’s nest style lookout, a telescope, and… two different flavors of fire extinguisher? More mushroom sauce? Your guess is as good as ours. Maybe sometimes you just need some dream ketchup and sriracha mayo. We shouldn’t judge.

And then you turn a page, and prepare to pick up a new bag, and … KRRRRgggghhhhhhhhh! The instructions background flips to a poisoned pink, and you know all is not well. Except if you’ve watched the show, in which case you know that the Dream Landing is the heroes’ safe space, and the Nightmare King’s forces never appear there. This is a really cool looking corrupted carnivorous (Presumably? Wait, if you eat someone in a dream does that count as eating meat???) plant, though!

After adding a bit of nightmare influence, we’re on to the choice between blue and green “A” and “B” builds. In this set, what that means is just different versions of the three attachable platforms that connect to the outside of the treehouse and extend the characters’ rooms. The instructions don’t make it clear, but the pieces that you need to build the first “B” variant are exactly the same as what you use for the corresponding “A” variant. In other words, bag 11 builds one of two different extensions for Izzy, bag 12 builds one of two different extensions for Mateo, etc.

The blocks of bright green and yellow windows are fun, with lots of translucent parts worked in. The … bagel pop-up toaster? … feels a bit left over by contrast. The other variations mostly put the treehouse on more of an explicit war footing, with a big green rocket array for Mateo and some large bombs instead of balloons for Izzy. And Mrs. Castillo’s bagel-star is now fully operational (many Bothans died to bring us this information)!

At least in our copy, there’s a distinct color error in the instructions for the “B” variation of Izzy’s room. As mentioned, the “A” and “B” variants don’t draw from different bags, and bag 11 has two 6×8 plates, one in tan and one in medium azure. However, in the “B” variant (green background), the manual seems to call for a medium nougat 6×8 plate. A check of the parts list at the back of the instructions confirms that the set does not include a 6×8 in that color, so we used the tan plate. But the color stays consistent through the second variant instructions, including matching other medium nougat parts. It definitely seems like the sort of thing that will result in some confusion and calls to Customer Service for missing pieces.

The minifigures, and other characters

The Good

We’ve seen very similar versions of the sibling Dream Chasers, Mateo and Izzie, in other sets, but here they both have their full capes and other accessories. Z-blob is in his little guy size, with a slimy head covering but the ability to grab things in his armpits. Izzy’s dual-molded sword and hair are the standout elements here, though all the figures are strong.

Both Mateo and Izzy feature alternate faces and detailed back printing, even though it’s usually hidden by Izzy’s hair and Mateo’s cape.

Mrs. Castillo and Dreamlings have shown up in several sets in the Dreamzzz range. The Dreamling has a mushroom hat and mycelium network printing around the back of the head. Mrs. Castillo has a really adorable new little old lady mold, though the mandatory backpack makes it less flexible for future figures. We’ll still hope for less-laden grandmas in the future.

The Bad

For a hero home base, there’s a good chunk of evil here. From right-hand-man the Night Hunter, to big-headed Snivel, to a Grimkeeper – plus remember that plant – there’s definitely trouble brewing here.

The Night Hunter is another absolutely fantastic evil minifigure in this range. Snivel is comically menacing and adorable, don’t get us wrong – That giant head with a row of teeth? A-mazing! But the cape and scarf from the Night Hunter are exceptional.

Even removing those billowing elements, the Night Hunter’s printing is great. It seems that maybe even for a trusted henchman, the Nightmare King might be keeping an eye on the Night Hunter’s back…

The Grimkeeper is a shorter and smaller version of 71455 Grimkeeper the Cage Monster, but has the requisite cell to imprison a dreamer, and certainly looks creepy enough with the black wings, white skull, and yellow eyes.

The … Mailbox?

Aaaand then there’s this walking mailbox with eyes and a propeller beanie. It’s not in the tv show, so we know nothing about it. It is quite cute. It can hold a letter in either arm but its arms are way too short to ever feed itself. It’s probably screaming inside.

Conclusion and recommendation

We loved 71469 Nightmare Shark Ship. And this, as the next largest set in the Dreamzzz line, has some similar characteristics: funky features, excellent minifigures, a mix of heroes and villains. But it’s also just more static than the Sharkyjaw Express. The price to piece ratio is better for the Treehouse, and there are a bunch of lovely elements, including all that blue foliage. But unless you really don’t want a nightmare focused set, if you were picking one, we recommend the Shark Ship. If you’re getting two? Hey, there’s a lot to like here. But check out the smaller Dreamzzz sets we’ve reviewed as well. There’s a lot to love, the Stable of Dream Creatures in particular. If this set bad value? No, not at all. But it shouldn’t be first on your list unless there’s something particular that draws your eye. However, this and the Crocodile Car are the only ways to get the Night Hunter, which pairs with the Nightmare King as some of the more excellent villain figures ever. You do want him, one way or another.

71461 Fantastical Tree House contains 1,257 pieces and 7+ characters, and is available now from the LEGO Shop and worldwide for US $109.99 | CAN $139.99 | UK £94.99 or from Amazon. It may also be available from third-party sellers on eBay.

The LEGO Group sent The Brothers Brick an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

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2 comments on “LEGO Dreamzzz 71461 Fantastical Tree House [Review]

  1. Taylor Connell

    It’s gorgeous and I love it. I need to rearrange some things to accomodate it, but I can’t wait to get this!

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