70431: The Lighthouse Of Darkness Set Review

The first wave of LEGO® Hidden Side sets gave us a nice mix of vehicles and location from the costal town of Newbury. Something which has continued with the latest sets, released just after Christmas. One of the largest of those new sets is spooky Lighthouse from the Grimsmouth Cove. The Lighthouse has long been the shining beacon to welcome seafaring folk into Newbury. But this light topped tower isn’t all what it seems and like many areas of Newbury, the Hidden Side has weaved its way into Lighthouse. But does that translate into a decent set? Read on for the second of my new Hidden Side set reviews.

Product Description

Welcome to the LEGO® Hidden Side universe, where physical and digital worlds merge to provide an incredible, single or multiplayer augmented reality (AR) experience. This lighthouse of darkness (70431) playset combines the open creative play of LEGO building toys with app so that interaction with the model triggers events in the digital world. Cool interactive building toy for kids Simply scan this lighthouse of darkness model with a smart device, equipped with the free Hidden Side AR app, to reveal an amazing digital world. Here, kids can explore and solve mysteries, hunt ghosts and battle the boss ghost Joe Ishmael. And with 5 cool minifigures, they also get to enjoy endless hands-on LEGO role-play fun! An ever-changing digital play experience The LEGO Hidden Side universe is set in the fictional town of Newbury, where ghosts haunt people and buildings. The augmented reality play experience is constantly enhanced through new content, ghosts and special events.

  • Set Name: The Lighthouse of Darkness
  • Set Number: 70431
  • Pieces: 540
  • RRP: £44.99/$49.99/49.99€
  • Measurements: measures over 29cm high, 22cm wide and 18cm deep
  • Minifigures: Jack, Parker, Skeleton, Jennie Napo & Claus Stormward
  • Hidden Side Spook: Joe
  • Availability: LEGO Brand Store, LEGO.com & LEGO retailers

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The Build

The set comprises of two buildable pieces, obviously the Lighthouse and a jetski. Which is where the build begins. There have been a number of jet ski builds over the years and they follows a similar style of build, but this is the first one I have seen which has the ‘floating’ steering column. The style of the jet ski also matches some of the other vehicles used by the ghost hunting team. So it’s has a similar bright colour scheme and also features a gloom blasting device on one side.

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The main focus of the set is the Lighthouse, with the first steps of the build focused around the rocking base and dock area. I’m just to going to ahead and say now, I absolutely love this part of the set. It looks amazing, the use of parts and a BURP element gives it an amazing craggy look and also hides one of the Hidden Side transformations. A couple of Technic rods connect to two light green claws. Pushing the rods, forces the claws to push up the BURP. It’s a cool little play feature and is very well hidden. The rocky section runs in a sort of L shape, with the section towards the opposite end featuring a small cove, where a skeleton hangs out. Right at the end of this area, is the AR colour wheel can be found. Unlike wave one, these aren’t incorporated into the overall build as much as previous sets. This is mainly a trait for the location based builds. Also dotted about the base of the Lighthouse are a couple of hinged plates which can be lifted to reveal coloured tile plates. I assume these have a use for the multiplayer elements of the AR functions, although some of the first Hidden Side sets also had them.

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Once the base is built you start of the actual Lighthouse tower. This is built is stages, which each sections featuring hidden gloomed elements. So the sections around the doorway and the one above it can both be opened to reveal teeth and at the very top, the light can be turned around to reveal a spooky eye. Again these elements are well hidden, which is one of the things I really like about all the Hidden Side sets. The Lighthouse has a couple of very tiny rooms. There really isn’t much space in them, still it’s nice they have been included, especially the control room, which could be a secret pirate radio studio.

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Getting LEGO to connect at jaunty angles isn’t exactly an easy feat. But you’ll notice the Lighthouse is sitting at a peculiar angle compared to the base. This is achieved by a very clever connection method. Which includes a couple of 4×4 round plates on the base of the Lighthouse tower and two turntable plates on the dock area. This allows the Lighthouse to sit in a nicely usual way.

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The Minifigures

The set features five Minifigures, which include the ghost hunting dup Jack and Parker. One of my main gripes with the first wave of sets was the lack of variety the two main character, although they both had two different outfits, each used the same headgear. For the new sets, both Jack and Parker have been given new looks. Jack swaps his hoodie for a backwards facing baseball cap and Parker loses the beanie, for a pair of headphones. Although their clothing is the same as from various wave one sets, these new pieces give both Minifigures a nice and welcomed new look.

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Jack and Parker are joined by more residents of Newbury. First up is diver Jennie Napo, who unlike other LEGO divers, is wearing a muted dive suit. Now muted doesn’t mean boring, far from it, I love the printing on the torso and legs, which combined with the brand new dark orange helmet and oxygen tanks results in a nice looking character. Claus Stormward is the salty old keeper of the Lighthouse. He’s made up of a mixture of old and newly recolored elements. His legs and head have appeared in previous sets, but he has a new torso and fishermans hat, both in my favourite Sand Green colour. His grey beard is also newly recoloured for 2020. I love this Minifigure as well, his colouring and overall look is perfect for the Lighthouse setting. They are joined by a cave dwelling Skeleton, this is just a standard version of the classic Minifigure, but it is wielding a familiar looking gadget.

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Jennie and Claus have been the unfortunate hosts of the Hidden Side ghosts. Jennie can simply become gloomed with the switch of a head and Claus swaps out his beard and head. The gloomed pieces look particularly good when combined with the sand green parts of Claus. Although not shown in the instructions, the set also features a pack of new gloomed elements, these are a mixture of pieces which can be connected to hands and other parts of a Minifigure. This allows you to create your own ghostly creations.

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AR Functions

The new Hidden Side sets continue with the AR functions but also expands them with the addition of multiplayer functions. The set can be played with as you would with any LEGO set, but you can enhance play with the addition of the LEGO Hidden Side AR app. This brings the set to life by overlaying graphics and animated elements around the physical set. Once you scan the set, it comes to life with an animated background and moving elements. The animations added to the Lighthouse are some of the best yet and really help to add a fun aspect to the play experience.


The Lighthouse of Darkness is another interesting Hidden Side set. I love how the rocky jetty and dock area has been done. The BURP and other elements perfectly combine to create a rugged looking base from the Lighthouse. Although the actual Lighthouse is a little cramped, it kind of needs to be in order to incorporate the gloomed elements, which I would say offers more playability than a larger interior would. There are also a number of re-coloured elements currently only found in this set, these include green domes pieces atop the Lighthouse and the angled window frame, which has only been used in Hidden Side sets so far, some of the Dark Azur pieces are also fairly rare. But I certainly wouldn’t say it’s a great set to part out, instead it’s a great addition to the Hidden Side range. A set which nicely expands the story of Newbury yet still feels part of the narrative started with the first sets. Not to mention an intersting looking set, in both its normal and glommed forms.

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Author: Adam White

Howdy I'm Adam, The editor of BricksFanz.com - your go to source for the latest LEGO news, reviews and much, much more. Some of you may know me from other LEGO sites so you'll know I have a good experience of the LEGO community and a deep, passionate commitment to all things LEGO. I specialize in seeking out the latest LEGO news and products, as well as being an expert on all things LEGO gaming. So welcome to BricksFanz - Fuelling Your LEGO Lifestyle.

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