17 really difficult LEGO sets

17 really difficult LEGO sets

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There might be no better way of killing time than super, super difficult LEGO sets. It’s truly one of mankind’s greatest inventions. With Easter weekend looming, there’s a chance you might be tempted to crack open a box containing thousands of disconnected plastic pieces and get cracking on one of those LEGO sets you’ve heard so much about. Push your limits and amaze your friends and family. 

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As you’ll see from the following list, the challenges are almost endless – from the point of purchase to the finished product. Can you afford a big LEGO set? Could your patience handle the job of constructing it? Can you tell all the tiny bits apart from one another? Maybe most important – can you resist a snooze on the sofa for long enough to finish the job? After all is said and done, you’ll also need a spare few inches of shelf space to proudly display your masterpiece.

If you fancy really pushing your brick-based skills, you might want to check out these 17 truly tough sets, all of which are available on Amazon or the Lego store now…

The Tower Of Orthanc

It may look simple enough on the box, but the Lord of the Rings’ Tower of Orthanc is a real tough nut to crack. Because most of its 2,359 pieces are jet black and slim, working out which bit goes where is the stuff of nightmares (um, good nightmares). The Treebeard that comes with it will make the struggle worth every second… we promise.

Buy The Tower Of Orthanc now for £350

Technic Motorised Excavator

For starters, this set consists of 1,123 pieces in the tricksy Technic mould. On top of that, there’s an electronic element and lots of moving parts. Getting this baby to roll, twist and excavate like it’s supposed to is no easy task. It also takes no less than 12 batteries to get the thing moving.

Buy the Technic Excavator now for £683

Technic Mobile Crane Mk II

Speaking of tough-to-tackle Technic kits, the Mobile Crane Mk II is hardly a cakewalk either. This 2,606-piece set actually includes more than one challenge: it’s two models in one, allowing the builder to choose the big crane on the box or a couple of smaller ones. Again, moving pieces are involved as well as batteries. This is the type of set where one small mistake to could have you scratching your head for hours. What fun!

Buy the Technic Mobile Crane Mk II for £418

Ultimate Star Destroyer

Thanks to its 3,104 pieces, most of which are the exact same shade of grey, the Ultimate Collector’s Series version of the Imperial Star Destroyer is pure evil as a piece of design. The Emperor would be proud. It comes with a 16+ age tag and isn’t for the faint of heart. And since it’s been discontinued for quite a while, it’s also ruddy expensive. This is one for the only the most die-hard Star Wars fans.

Buy the Ultimate Star Destroyer for £2,785

Tower Bridge

This LEGO Creator incarnation of London’s Tower Bridge is an absolute beauty. And with it’s 4,287 pieces and moving parts (the bottom bit of the bridge opens up, of course), it’s definitely not a walk in the park. It does come with a cute little London bus, though, and promises one hell of a sense of achievement to any who manage to master it.

Buy the LEGO Creator Tower Bridge for £240

Imperial Shuttle

Again, this one looks very simple on the box, but once you’ve tried fiddling around with over 2,500 incredibly similar pieces, you’ll be ripping your hair out. The fact that the cockpit opens, the wings fold up and the cannons are meant to move does not make matters any easier. But wouldn’t a shuttle like this look lovely on your shelf?

Buy the Imperial Shuttle for £690 new or £405 used

Ghostbusters HQ

Cor blimey, this one’s lovely. And although it might look fairly simple from this angle, it’s actually a properly challenging kit. It consists of 4,634 pieces, and it opens up on hinges to reveal a variety of rooms and staircases within. Once it’s built, though, there are hours of fun to be had. It’s like a ghoulish dolls house! Which is just what you were looking for, right?

Buy the Ghostbusters Firehouse Headquarters for £428

Ultimate Millennium Falcon

The devil’s in the detail with this one. To build a Millennium Falcon this textured and detailed, you have to piece together 5,197 bricks. Other LEGO versions of the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy have been and gone over the years, but this is by far the most visually stunning. The price tag might stun you as well since it’s a discontinued item…

Buy the Ultimate Collector’s Millennium Falcon for £2,505 new or £2,322 used. Gulp. Or buy the latest version at the Lego store for £125

Eiffel Tower

Sacrebleu! Recreating this iconic French landmark in LEGO form takes 3,428 bricks. Most of them are titchy and grey. It’s a careful balancing act to get them all together without knocking the whole thing over, as well. This kit is aimed at ages 16 and up, and it’s a very precise and challenging project. Best of luck to anyone out there attempting it!

Buy the LEGO Eiffel Tower for £2,769 new or buy the latest version from the Lego store for £42

S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier

Here’s one for the hardcore Marvel fans out there: a loving LEGO translation of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s trademarked Helicarrier, which clocks in at 2,996 pieces and comes with 5 Minifigures, 3 microscale Quinjets, 3 fighter jets, a gasoline truck, 2 forklift trucks 2 runways, 4 road blockades and 12 tiny Microfigures. None of them, sadly, are Phil Coulson.

Buy the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier for £447

Motorised AT-AT

Man, I really love this one. 1,137 pieces, 6 AA batteries (not included), a fair few quid and several hours of your building time can combine to build a version of The Empire Strikes Back’s iconic AT-AT that actually ruddy walks. Practical fun meets a gorgeous design, and the result is a proper geeky treat.

Buy the Motorised AT-AT for £799

Sydney Opera House

Another beautiful landmark in LEGO form here, thanks to the expert-level LEGO Creator range. This Sydney Opera House build measures up at 2,989 pieces. The shape of the building itself, with all its angled walls, makes this a hefty challenge even for a seasoned master builder.

Buy the LEGO Creator Sydney Opera House for £349

Super Star Destroyer

At 3,152 pieces, this Super Star Destroyer is an even larger undertaking than the Ultimate Star Destroyer we listed earlier. And given the thinner design of this one, you could argue that it’s even more difficult to build. Again, the limited colour palette makes picking the right pieces difficult, and the stark Imperial design makes the job at hand even harder.

Buy the Super Star Destroyer for £886

Taj Mahal

Here’s another gem from the LEGO Creator line: a beautiful Taj Mahal build, which consists of a whopping 5,922 pieces. It’s designed for expert builders, and it measures up at 41cm tall by 51cm wide. As an added bonus: a lot of the bricks are unique to this kit, created just to bring this Indian icon to life in the best way possible.

Buy the LEGO Creator Taj Mahal for £973


Utinni!! 3,296 pieces make up this LEGO version of Star Wars’ Tatooine Sandcrawler, which really is a sight to behold. It has ramps, cranes and compartments that move, and it rolls around on tracks. It’s brilliantly detailed. And the plethora of Minifigures and droids add an extra layer of fun.

Buy the LEGO Sandcrawler for £396

Grand Carousel

An absolute classic, this. The Grand Carousel consists of 3,263 pieces, and thanks to an in-built motor it can actually rotate. And it plays music while it does. It’s intended for ages 16 and up, and it would look great in any LEGO collection. Plus, here’s a fun fact: it comes with an ultra-rare extra large baseplate. What more motivation do you need?

You can buy the Grand Carousel for – yikes – £1,715

Death Star II

LEGO kits don’t come much more difficult than this: the second Death Star consists of 3,417 pieces, plus it has a ‘half-finished’ state as its intended final look. Tough stuff! Once you’ve constructed this technological terror, you’ll want to put it in pride of place. Thankfully, it comes with a little stand to let you do just that. 

You can buy the LEGO Death Star 2 for £2,476 new or £405 used. Crikey. That’s a lot of credits! OR buy the latest version currently on offer at the Lego store for £400

Have you tried any of these LEGO sets? Or found another kit particularly challenging? We’d love to hear from you in the comments, with pictures if possible…


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