Now that it's nearly Halloween, it's probably ok to write about Christmas specials. Because...
Lego Christmas Build-Up
This is a gift set for those who spend $99 / £60 / EUR 68. There is a great and thorough review of this product on Brickset.
Rather than 24 separate items, as in the advent calendar, you get to build 24 different models out of a set of block provided. Whether you really want this set or not has to be weighed against how much the sets you would be buying at Lego itself are discounted elsewhere. No doubt, this set will surface on eBay soon to buy on its own.
Lego City Advent Calendar
The Lego advent calendars have become firm favorites over the years. The Lego City advent calendar continues to build up the outdoor scene of previous years, so you can add more activities to your Lego town. These include stalls for your advent market, a fireman's band and Santa with sleigh. Overall this is a handsome set and available with good mark-downs in stores, making it a good gift option. This is my favourite of the advent sets as it has good figurines and an actual advent theme.
Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar
My gripe about the Star Wars advent set is that it is not actually Christmas themed. Granted, we don't know if Christmas is celebrated in a glaxy far far away. Mostly you get a whole lot of extra soldiers and weapons to build a bigger battle. All the same, if that's what your loved ones are after, it's a good gift.
Lego Friends Advent Calendar
While this one is Christmas themed, I still think it's the weekest set of the three. The accessories and furniture provided to furnish your lounge is just not that exciting or incentive. I think children of either gender will enjoy either the Star Wars or the City set more. It's a shame because last year's special was quite good and supplemented the outdoor City scene.