Ratings and Reviews for 79004-1: Barrel Escape

79004-1: Barrel Escape

Overall Score

View Price Guide Review this Set
  • First Impression Does the set "WOW" you? 8.00
  • Unique Parts/Minifigures Unique parts? Increase resale? 9.00
  • Playability/Build Experience Is this a "FUN" set to build? 9.00
  • Value for money (NEW) "Bang for your buck"? 9.00
  • Theme Popularity Will theme help with resale? 9.00
  • Exclusivity Unique production aspects? 9.00
  • Packaging Does this set stand out? 8.00
  • Growth Potential Possibility of revenue growth? 10
  • Display Attributes Does this set stand out? 8.00
  • Conclusion Your final analysis.. 9.00
Review from: Noodlenut
Reviewed on: Feb 26, 2014
Avatar for: Noodlenut
Join Date: 05/26/2013
# of Reviews: 5

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Help Bilbo Baggins™ free the Dwarves by rolling to safety in barrels with 4 exclusive LEGO® The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey™ minifigures!


Help the Dwarves escape from The Elvenking’s wine cellar dungeon!

Help! The Mirkwood™ Elves have locked the Dwarves in The Elvenking’s palace dungeon! Use the Ring to imagine Bilbo Baggins™ is invisible to the guards, then steal their dungeon key to free the Dwarves! Hide the Dwarves inside of the barrel elements and trigger the barrel roll function to start escaping! As the barrels roll down the ramp with the Dwarves inside, bust the dungeon door open with the breakout function lever! Keep holding the magical Ring to imagine Bilbo Baggins is invisible as he pushes the Dwarves out of the palace and back onto their epic journey. Includes Bilbo Baggins and 4 minifigures exclusive to this building set: Gloin the DwarfOin the DwarfMirkwood Elf Chief andMirkwood Elf Guard, all with assorted accessories and weapons.

•Includes 5 minifigures: Bilbo Baggins™, Gloin the DwarfOin the DwarfMirkwood™ Elf Chief and Mirkwood™ Elf Guard, all with assorted weapons
•Wine cellar dungeon features spiral staircase, double dungeon door with breakout function, wine barrel rack with rolling barrel function, 2 small barrels, table and stool
•Accessories include the Ring, the golden dungeon key, a letter, 2 wine glasses, 6 bottles, wine bottle rack, torch with flame element, cask and 2 barrels
•Weapons include: staff, spear, bow, 2 golden swords, double-headed axe and single axe
•Roll the Dwarves to freedom with the barrel roll function!
•Steal the golden dungeon key from the guards!
•Open the prison door with the breakout function!
•Wine cellar dungeon measures over 2” (5cm) high, 15” (39cm) wide and 2” (6cm) deep
•Table measures over 0.5” (2cm) high, 2” (5cm) wide and 1” (3cm) long


Barrel Escape is another one of the great sets from the first line of Hobbit sets.  This is my second favorite Hobbit set, with my first favorite being An Unexpected Gathering.  I did a review for that one too.  Barrel Escape has a retail price of $39.99 and has 334 pieces.  This is an amazing set, and I'm very excited about reviewing it.  Let's get started!


Unique Parts

All parts included in the unique parts list currently come in five sets or less and exclude minifigures and accessories.







This set uses a lot of regular pieces that are not that rare.  As you can see, the rare pieces are not very abundant and will not affect the CAGR of this set much if at all.




All the minifigures in this set are exclusive except for Bilbo, who comes in three sets.  After the Hobbit theme retires, I expect there to be four or five sets with the red jacket version of Bilbo.





Mirkwood Elf Guard:



Mirkwood Elf Cheif:



Gloin the Dwarf:



Oin the Dwarf:


The Barrel Escape is a Toys "R" Us exclusive.  My guess is that TLG will not remake either of the dwarves included in this set, and it unlikely that the Mirkwood Elf Cheif will appear in any other set.  The minifigures and exclusivity will make this set popular after retirement.


I really enjoyed building this set and highly recomend it to anyone who loves castle, LOTR, or The Hobbit.  The spiral staircase and the barrel chute was very fun to build and the final product looks great.

The build experience is awesome, but the main highlight of this set is the playability.  There are tons of weapons, wine bottles, and details that make this set enjoyable to play with.



One of the main features of this set is the barrel ramp.  The only problem with this is that the dwarves can sometimes roll out of the barrels.  Overall, this function works without many major flaws.


Many people determine the value of a set by its appearence, but I believe this to be an unfair judgement.  To determine the value of a set, we must look at how much the minifigures sell for and how much the rest of the set sells for.

Average Sales on eBay

Mirkwood Elf Guard Mirkwood Elf Cheif Red Jacket Bilbo Gloin the Dwarf Oin the Dwarf
$7.00 $6.00 $4.00 $12.00 $11.00

If we would sell all these minifigures together on eBay for the price that they have been selling individually, then we would get $40 dollars.  Unfortunately, people do not want to pay that much only for the minifigures.  A reasonable price for all the minifigures would probabally be somewhere between $30 to $35 dollars.

The rest of the set is going for $15 to $20 dollars.  If we would sell the minifigures individually and make $35 dollars profit and then sell the rest of the set and make $15 dollars profit, we would end up with $10 dollars more than retail price.  That is not bad, considering that this set has been available for over a year.  This should tell us something about how well this set will appreciate after retirement.


Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit have both been very popular themes with an average CAGR of 20.20%.  The movies that the sets have been based on were well received at the theaters, and the books that the movies were based on continue to be popular.  Overall, the LOTR and Hobbit themes have been a huge success, and I hope that The LEGO Group will continue to make these sets.


This set is a Toys 'R' Us exclusive.  The only other way that this set can be obtained is through LEGO Shop At Home.  The exclusivity of a set also plays a part as to how much this set will be discounted.  The only possibility of a dicount is if LEGO wants to get rid of some and discounts them on their own website.  Other than that, there is a very slim chance of an exclusive set like this being discounted very much.

PACKAGING | Score: 8

The packaging of this set is thin, but wide, which can make this set harder to ship.  That is the only thing that I would change about the box.


From a collector's standpoint, the box was very well designed and looks great.  It highlights the minifigures and some main play features in the set.


I think that this will become a sleeper set.  There are four exclusive minifigures in this set, two of which are Dwarves - key characters of the movie.  It amazed me to see that the set with no minifigures was going for $15 to $20 dollars.  Some key attributes of this set are:

1.  Four exclusive minifigures

2.  The set with no minifigures is still popular

3.  The set is a Toys 'R' Us exclusive

4.  People are not paying enough attention to it

All these combined make a pretty good recipe for a sleeper set.  Not only are there good minifigures, there is also a well designed build.  To top it off, this set is a Toys 'R' Us exclusive.  This set should be disappearing soon along with the rest of the line, which is becoming hard to find in stores.


This set has hovered around a value of $40 dollars.  Even though the current CAGR is 1.16%, this will not have much of an impact on the future growth of the set.

My own opinion is that this set will perform better than the Orc Forge.  Everyone's brother had at least one Orc Forge and hoped that it would be an investment success.  This set, however, is rarely talked about in the Brickpicker forums.

There does not seem to be any possible way that this set could fail.  Think about one LOTR set that failed: Attack on Weathertop.  Even though it dissapeared very quickly from S@H, the set had been heavily discounted in its lifetime.  This set has not.  Attack on Weathertop was available everywhere, while this set is not.

I am not saying that this is the best set from The Hobbit's first line.  The best investment from the first line will probablly end up being An Unexpected Gathering.

I am saying that out of all the $40 dollar sets available, this set is one of the best investments available.

This set will soar in value after retirement and is a very stable investment.  I can see it approaching $70 dollars within a year after retirement.


The set has nice details all the way through it, from the arches on the top to the tables and chairs.  This is a relatively low priced set that has a good build and great minifigures.  This is not the best set LEGO has ever created on the terms of display value, but for $40 dollars, it is one of the best sets available.



Out of all the $40 dollar sets available, I think this is the one that should be targeted as an investment.  This is my second favorite LOTR/Hobbit set, with my first being An Unexpected Gathering.  The barrel scene in The Desolation of Smaug is a scene that is talked about frequently and has been a favorite among fans.  Even though I have been talking about this set as an investment for the most part, it is also a great set to build and enjoy.  The tan and brown pieces make for a great parts pack, and all the details top it off.  Overall, this is a great set for both investors and collectors.  Thanks for reading!