LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush review

LEGO Minecraft’s best Nether set yet – 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush – is a colourful creation that calls back to a terrifying Minecraft moment.

Entering the Nether for the first time in Minecraft can be as awe-inspiring as it is harrowing. As the red-tinted nightmarish landscape unfolds before you (when the chunks are loading in), there’s every danger that a Ghast will have spawned nearby to destroy your only way home with a well-placed fireball. Here’s hoping you brought a flint and steel.

LEGO Minecraft’s 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush calls back to that moment, just as 21143 The Nether Portal did back in 2018. Thanks to the various updates to the dimension in the years since, the 2024 model is infinitely more vibrant and interesting, to its great benefit.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush set details —

Theme: LEGO Minecraft Set name: 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush Release date: January 1, 2024 

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Price: £31.99 / $37.99 / €37.99 Pieces: 352 Minifigures: 1

LEGO: Order now

— Where to buy LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush —

As with most of the 2024 LEGO Minecraft models, 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush is launching on January 1, 2024, for £31.99 / $37.99 / €37.99. It’s not exclusive to official LEGO channels, so you should be able to find it easily.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush build —

While the Ghast is a substantial part of 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush‘s piece count, we’ll save the best part of the build for now and focus on the landscape included in the set.

A small portion of a Nether Wastes biome, a vibrant section of a Crimson Forest and the rocky Basalt Delta surround the Nether portal. Though each section is undoubtedly minuscule, combined they represent a strong overall image of the Nether with one of the most vibrant colour schemes possible in the unforgiving dimension.

A pool of lava sits at the front of the model and the player minifigure may want to set up a few protective barriers to stop themselves falling in after exiting the portal. There’s some additional decoration on either side of the portal too – this is a great detail that isn’t needed but superbly enhances the visuals of the model.

As with most LEGO Minecraft sets, the back of the model is much less interesting but has one major detail you might forget. Mining away some of the ground reveals a rare piece of Ancient Debris that you can use in-game to make the strongest equipment possible. It’s a nice bonus that you only see if you dig away at the back of the build.

The main feature of this set is the ability to shoot out the glowing purple aura of the portal and disable it, trapping the minifigure in the Nether. The Ghast’s fireball is used for this function and it’s a fun challenge trying to line up the shot. The purple part of the portal is exceedingly flimsy as a result of this feature and will fall out with little to no effort, but that’s the only major downside to 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush characters —

As with much of the LEGO Minecraft 2024 sets, the characters are the shining stars of 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush. The entire selection is either rare or exclusive to this set and one character in particular fixes a huge problem with a recent LEGO Minecraft figure.

The Orc-warrior minifigure is entirely exclusive to this set and it’s a definitively unique take on a LEGO Minecraft minifigure. The design is likely going to be an acquired taste, but the pastel colour scheme is a breath of fresh air.

As well as the minifigure, four mobs are provided in 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush. Two of these are simple Magma Cubes for the Basalt Delta biome and there’s nothing too noteworthy about them, though they help to populate the set.

The adult Hoglin returns after debuting in 21168 The Warped Forest where it had an inaccurate design to the game. Thankfully, this has now been rectified with a vastly improved take on the creature.

Its skin tone is now correct, the tusks are more impressive and it can even attack minifigures by raising those tusks in the air through a lever depicting its black hair. We can only hope that this design is here to stay as it’s hard to see how it could be improved any further.

As good as the Hoglin is, the Ghast is by far the best part of 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush. The mob first appeared in LEGO as part of 21122 The Nether Fortress and received a redesign in 2018. It mostly matches that redesign in the 2024 model, but with one huge twist.

One of the white tentacles that hangs from the bottom of the body is equipped with a thin and tall bracket piece that makes it far sturdier than previous LEGO Ghasts. This also means that the creature can sit safely on top of the tallest spire in the Basalt Delta area as if it were flying through the air.

This is easily the best LEGO Ghast ever designed and wraps up an incredible character selection in 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush price —

For £31.99 / $37.99 / €37.99, 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush is priced better than expected and presents great value overall. While not huge, the vibrant landscape on its own is considerable with its details. Alongside the characters, this set could easily be named the best (or at least the most diverse) LEGO Minecraft Nether model yet.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush pictures —

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush pros and cons —

21255 The Nether Portal Ambush is another huge win for LEGO Minecraft in 2024, fixing one of the theme’s biggest errors in a previous set but going one step further and adding a fun and easy-to-use function to the Hoglin. The Ghast could easily be a set on its own, but its compatibility with the main model shows just how much thought the design team put into this package.

Those who have missed out on previous LEGO Minecraft Nether models should aim to pick up 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush, and even those who have them all will want to grab this diverse creation for its characters and landscape. 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush is one of – and possibly the best of – the 2024 LEGO Minecraft sets.

21255 The Nether Portal Ambush pros21255 The Nether Portal Ambush cons
An all-round Nether experienceThree small areas instead of one bigger biome
Incredible and functional Ghast buildNot a great wealth of landscape overall
Fixes Hoglin colour scheme

This set was provided for review by the LEGO Group.

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— Alternatives to LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush —

The best alternatives to 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush have long since retired, with the sole exception of 21185 The Nether Bastion (though that’s also on its way out in 2023). These include 21143 The Nether Portal and 21168 The Warped Forest, which boast a Ghast and Hoglin respectively. Note that the 2024 set includes improved versions of each.

Otherwise, you may have to settle for a mixed overworld-Nether model for a decent alternative to 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush at this price range. Our other recommendation would be 21172 The Ruined Portal, though it has the older Hoglin design too.

— LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush FAQs —

How long does it take to build LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush?

Building 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush takes around 40 minutes, though this may vary depending on how fast or experienced you are building LEGO sets.

How many pieces are in LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush?

21255 The Nether Portal Ambush includes 352 pieces that make up the landscape and five characters. It feels a lot bigger than a 350-piece set though.

How big is LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush?

21255 The Nether Portal Ambush measures 11cm tall, 22cm wide and 14cm deep. Adding the Ghast to the top of the tallest Basalt Delta spire doesn’t change the measurements a noteworthy amount.

How much does LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush cost?

You can grab LEGO Minecraft 21255 The Nether Portal Ambush at various retailers from January 1, 2024 for £31.99 / $37.99 / €37.99.

Author Profile

Jack Yates
Jack Yates
LEGO has been a part of my life ever since I was young. It all started when my brother passed down 7657 AT-ST to me. It’s guided me through my early years, through school and eventually through my degree in journalism. I still have all my collection proudly on display, including my many NINJAGO sets, my favourite of all the LEGO Group’s themes. Outside of Brick Fanatics I am an avid gamer and enjoy a good game of Dungeons & Dragons.

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Jack Yates

LEGO has been a part of my life ever since I was young. It all started when my brother passed down 7657 AT-ST to me. It’s guided me through my early years, through school and eventually through my degree in journalism. I still have all my collection proudly on display, including my many NINJAGO sets, my favourite of all the LEGO Group’s themes. Outside of Brick Fanatics I am an avid gamer and enjoy a good game of Dungeons & Dragons.

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