User Rating: Excellent
Pros:Solid and durable stones, nice graphics, wide assortment of characters from the Potter books.
Cons:If handled roughly, they will scratch.
The Bottom Line: Fans of the Harry Potter series of book and line of film will freak out when they see these magical and mystical stones!
Recommend this product?
This past Christmas I came across the Harry Potter Collector Stones at a small card store while I was doing some last minute shopping. I didnt pay much attention to the display when it was first put up, but the when I saw that a lot of the Potter products were on sale, I couldnt resist checking these out and picking up a few containers. Little did I know Id become addicted to them but my hopes and dreams of getting the complete set were soon dashed when supplies dwindled and they were literally no where to be found. Once again, I have to thank my awesome friends who are constantly stockpiling things for me. At this years ComiCon I was handed several of the plastic cases and pointed in the direction of a vendor that was getting rid of a ton of them dirt cheap. Never let it be said that I passed up an opportunity to take advantage of a sale, greedily, I purchased all that the seller had and gave him my email address so he could contact me if he came across any others.
Since the brood have started to show a real passion for comics, theyve started tagging along with me to the various conventions we attend. This is a great way for us to spend quality time together and pick up items that would otherwise be pretty hard to come by. Ill admit it, I am addicted to collecting these stones and thankfully the boys only showed a passing fancy for them. If you are a Harry Potter fan or collect any of the related merchandise, this is a wonderful series to invest in. These stones shouldnt be confused with the Casting Stones that were sold individually and sold in mega sets to be used with the accompanying game. They are a completely different product and the two have no resemblance what so ever. At this time Im only collecting the first series of stones, the second will have to wait until I can find a vendor, seller or site that has a lot of them in stock.
The Harry Potter Collector Stones Series One
Packaged in small plastic containers, these stones come in a variety of shapes and colors. Each of them are imprinted with a name or image that correlates to the Harry Potter series of books and films. Some of the themes of the stones are the students of Hogwarts [Harry, Hermione, Ron] as well as their respective houses, intangibles like the Sorting Hat, spells, Sorcerers Stone and potions, animals [Fluffy, Scabbers, Norbert, Hedwig, Mrs. Norris etc] and other assorted goodies. One major drawback is that the only Hogwarts professor that is featured in the first series is Snape [unless you count You Know Who]. From what Ive seen of the second series, there are only two Hogwarts elders featured.
There are four shapes lightening bolt, square, diamond and tear drop. Colors include yellow, red, purple, light green, orange, blue and clear. There are some slight differences in colors, for example some of the blues are a little lighter than others and for some reason there are two shades of yellow. Id imagine that these slight differences are from manufacturing and the amount of pigment that was added to the resin when they were being formed. For the most part the images and text that re stamped on the stones are nice but a few of them, like the Harry Potter stone [purple lightening bolt], has the image shoved at the top of the stone making it look a little uneven and lopsided.
The first series of the The Harry Potter Collector Stones debuted in 2000 and didnt really take off. There were games created for the stones but since they were touted as collector pieces, most people wouldnt dare toss them around like dice or handle them roughly. These are heavily traded amongst Potter fans and collectors and until recently people were selling the stones individually for obscene amounts of money. When first released, they had a retail price of $4.99 per package, with three stones in each pack. When you take into consideration that there are a total of twenty four stones in the first series and that they are randomly packaged you can expect to purchase at least fifteen sets to complete the collection. Luckily I got a few of these as gifts and the others at rock bottom prices. Would I pay full price for them? Probably not. To me these just arent worth $4.99 a pop for three stones.
My Favorite Stones
There are several stones that I absolutely fell in love with and was extremely lucky to get duplicates of. First off, the rarest of all is the Golden Snitch and with all the hype about it, I expected it to be a little more impressive. Still, it is an attractive piece that stands out from the rest of the stones. If I am correct, its the only stone that has no markings or text on it; the clear lightening bold design has a small gold ball with two white wings inside it. The purple square stone for You Know Who [Lord Voldemort] is a nice looking one and the white text and imagery really looks great on this color of stone. The Hogwarts crest is stamped on an amber [looks orange to me] diamond is one of my favorites because of the amount of detail to the image. This was the one that was hardest for em to come across and out of all the containers Ive purchased or received, Ive only managed to get two of these. All four of the Hogwarts houses [Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, Slytherin and Hufflepuff] are great looking but lack a little detail, they have the name of the house and associated animal on the stone but not the official crest.
Things To Know
Its really important that you pay attention to the series of stones when purchasing them. There arent any distinguishing marks on them to differentiate the two series so youll have to work from the provided checklist if they get mixed up. To some people this isnt a big deal but collectors will tell you that being organized it the easiest way to keep track of things, avoid getting tons of duplicated and makes it that much easier to finish off the series. If you are going to order these from an online site, please check them out first. I got burned several times ordering these from people that claimed they were in mint condition [they arrived scratched or with the images and text marred], were the incorrect pieces or simply never got what I ordered. If this series f stones sounds like something that youd like to check out, visit stores that sell Harry Potter products or contact Enesco about purchasing them directly.
The Bottom Line
These would make great gifts for Harry Potter fans of any age. Since they are on the small side, most of them about an inch wide and about a half in thick, these should be kept away from kids under the age of five. On the bottom of the package it states that these arent recommended for children under the age of three but personally I think that is a little off. These are great collectors items and keep with the imagery from the books and related J.K. Rowling artwork. If you come across these on sale or clearance dont hesitate to pick them up and check them out if you are a fan of the books or films.
As always, thanks for the visit
^V^ Freak ^V^
© 2003 Freak369
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Amount Paid (US$): =see review=
Type of Toy: Other
Age Range of Child: Whole Family