Tag Archives: Star Wars

U-Wing – Star Wars: Rogue One – 3 3/4 inch scale ship

Let’s take a look at something from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…

The U-Wing. A starfighter that doubles as a troop transport. It saw a good piece of action in Rogue One. It is too bad it was created so recently, as it could have been very useful in the original trilogy that followed Rogue One. There are a bunch of cool things we saw in Rogue One that didn’t carry over to the original trilogy, but that is to be expected. Today we are going to look at the ship.

It comes in a good sized box. I was surprised to see so much room left in the box. The biggest complaint I saw was how relatively small the body actually is. It seems that they could have gone 10-20% larger and still stayed inside the box.

There are a lot of parts in the box. The body, Cassian with a gun, two super long wings, four engines, and 2 NERF darts. If you read my A-Wing review, you will know I have no love of the NERF gimmick. At least this time around, the blaster can be tucked up in the body, so it isn’t so blatantly annoying, like it is with the A-Wing.

First let’s look at Cassian. It is a typical figure we see in this modern, but not Golden Age of Star Wars. It should be the Golden Age, with figures that have good articulation. But no, somewhere along the line, Hasbro went backwards from the Clone Era where we got super articulation, to going back to 5 points. Ugh.

Well, he is very static with such a small amount of articulation, but I am not terribly worried about it, since I am really only interested in the ship. My figure focus is in The Black Series with the 6 inch figures. He comes with his blaster, and a holster on his hip for carrying his gun.

He comes with a seatbelt. HAHA!!!

Onto the ship. Let’s put Cassian in the…wait a minute. What is this cockpit they have him going into? The cockpit in the movie is big enough for two people and extra space for moving around. This one has room for one pilot and that is about it. This is where the smaller size comes into play, and there are plenty of people bummed about it.

Moving on to the outside of the ship. It has those great engines that connect the U-Wing to the X-Wing in design and function. That was a great touch. It has the fat belly, but it is a bit on the slim side for allowing soldiers to jump out of the door that is way too small.

Other than the size problem, this is a really nice ship. The details are really well done, from the mold lines, to the paint. It does look a little too clean, and could go a long way with a bit of weathering, which I will probably get around to one of these days. There are four landing struts that are moved down by hand. Two are under the body, and two are in the bottom engines. Having four struts really makes a strong platform for the ship to settle onto terra firma.

The biggest excitement for this vehicle when it was premiered in the trailers was the swept wing that stick out way in front, and then sweep back to make the ship very long. It totally changes the look of the ship. If you look at the bottom, you can see the NERF blaster sticking out. It is dark in color, and slides up and down easily. Thankfully it is out of the way for the most part.

Taking a look at the top of the ship, you can see the lever that gets pulled to make the wings sweep back.

Overall, this is a really nice ship. There are issues with size, and adding an unnecessary NERF blaster to the bottom, but those are fairly minor, and the design of the ship is very appealing, and fun to play with. It is big and has moving parts. Can’t ask for much more than that.


Scarif Trooper – Star Wars The Black Series – Rogue One (Walmart Exclusive)

I got done with my look at the new Target Exclusive AT-ACT Driver, and realized that I had never looked at the Scarif Trooper. What an oversight on my part. I had looked at the initial release of the Squad Leader that saw general release, but the troop builder figure only saw release at Walmart. That is a pretty strange way to go about selling toys, but whatever. I don’t make the rules.

Being that finding the exclusives for Walmart are super hard to do, I had ordered them online, since I knew it would be way better to just go that route and not have to travel around to see if I could find any (which I never did).

So my box showed up with 3 troopers (best deal to get free shipping). They are very similar to the Squad leader, but with a different belt that does not have the long blue skirt, but instead has a shorter off-white skirt.

I really like these troopers overall. Their paint apps are random, so they don’t all seem to have the same dirt and scuff marks in the same place. Troop building with these guys is fun.

As of the time of this photo shoot, I had 5 Scarif Troopers, 4 Death Troopers, a Hovertank Driver, and a Stormtrooper. That is a goodly number of troopers, but more than that, it is an interesting looking bunch. If for no other reason, Rogue One expanded the universe of the Troopers, and we have more to look at than just a bunch of shiny white dudes, and an occasional Speeder Bike driver (who I have, but somehow didn’t make it to the shoot. That is definitely my bad on that one).


Imperial AT-ACT Driver – Star Wars The Black Series Target Exclusive

Today we are going to take a look at the newly minted Target Exclusive figure AT-ACT Driver. Now, I am not sure we even saw these guys in Rogue One, since we barely saw the AT-ACT, so this could be totally made up for the toy line. That being said, I am a sucker for action figures in the 6 inch line, and The Black Series figures never disappoint (except for the head sculpts of the women, but Hasbro is working on it).

This guy looks very familiar, and he should. He is made up of the two previously introduced new Troopers to the Star Wars Universe for the Rogue One movie. Most of the parts are Scariff Trooper parts with a bit of Hovertank Pilot thrown in. Since those two figures share most of the parts anyway, it is not too big of a surprise to see them being used again.

What I am surprised about is that Rogue One takes place basically right at the beginning of A New Hope. The time runs quickly in A New Hope, and both movies are considered year 0 B.B.Y. (Before the Battle of Yavin). Therefore, it is 3 years before we see the first of the AT-AT Imperial Walkers. Along with that, in the Rebels series, we see AT-ATs in Season 1, Episode 10 (A Princess on Lothal), which takes place 3 years BBY, and we actually see the drivers. They are wearing the suit and helmet of the later AT-AT drivers. It seems unlikely that the AT-AT and the AT-ACT would be different enough to constitute a completely different outfit and helmet. More likely, they would wear the same outfit.

But, you know how it goes. There are 40th anniversary figures coming out, and everybody wants a piece of the giant Star Wars pie. So, Target gets their special exclusive, and it happens to be a driver we never saw. That isn’t totally a bad thing. The figure is well made. He is another Trooper that fits in with the rest of the Rogue One line, and deepens the ranks for the collectors and photographers.

He is similar to the Scariff Trooper and the Hovertank Pilot, but not similar enough that he should be skipped. The coloring is really well done with white armor, that neither of the other two have. He has red markings that are unique to him.

Overall, this is not going to be a figure I think a lot of people will want to army build. We will probably never have a 6 inch scale AT-ACT, as the 3 3/4 inch version did not sell well. I am looking forward to see what all we get with the 40th Anniversary line. It will be a fun summer.a


Rey – Star Wars Elite Series (Disney Exclusive)

The Force Awakens came out about a year and a half ago. Since it is the first part of the new trilogy, there is more attention being paid to it than there was to Rogue One, which was a one off movie. One place they are being equally represented is at the Disney Store. They get to have their own exclusive editions of figures and clothing. One of the best representations of this is in the Star Wars Elite figures. They are larger figures with real cloth clothing. Some of the figures are taller, around 12 inches while others, like Rey stand shorter, around 10 inches.

I was able to get Rey on a sale, as well as having a 25% off coupon for the Disney Store for my birthday. She ended up costing about $13. That is a great deal for a The Black Series figure, much less a larger figure with cloth clothing.

Taking her out of the box, the first thing I notices was the rooted hair. I was expecting sculpted hair at best. I was not expecting it to be rooted. And it is in her tell-tale triple buns.

Her outfit is the standard outfit she wore through most of TFA. She has a nice mix of cloth and plastic goods. Her outfit is layered, including the arm coverings, tunic and short pants. She comes with her belt pouch attached, as well as a leather strap around her left forearm.

Her boots are molded on, but they have good movement around the ankle. There is a separation there that allows a ball joint. She also has toe articulation.

She comes with plenty of accessories. She has her backpack that is molded in plastic. There are a lot of mechanical doodads that are well painted, along with weathering and straps. She also comes with her staff. It is nice and tall, as it should be. The strap of the staff is molded in place. It would have been really nice to see that staff in fabric, I may go back and build my own staff for her, and give her a proper staff, so she can wear it on her body. She comes with a gripping hand for her right hand that will grip the staff.

There are two weapons as well. First off is the blaster that Han gave her. It seems like it is out of scale for her. It is very larger in her hand. She comes with a special gun hand that can be swapped out for a relaxed hand.

She also comes with Luke’s blue lightsaber. This one seems REALLY out of scale. It is almost as long as Rey is tall. The blade is really thick, and the hilt seems to be really fat and long too. They even gave Rey a lightsaber hand, since the hand for the staff is closed too small for the hilt of the saber. The blade is not removable. So you cannot re enact the end of the movie.

Overall, I really like this figure. It makes me want to get more of these well done figures. I am bummed about the lightsaber and the gun being too big, but it is a minor problem with the overall well done figure.


Hera Syndulla’s A-Wing – Star Wars Rebels – 3 3/4 inch vehicle

There is a Mandalorian fighter in the background.  Will we get one of those too?

There is a Mandalorian fighter in the background. Will we get one of those too?

Hera is one of my favorite characters in the Rebels show. She has such an even attitude, which probably helps make her a great pilot. I recently finished the novel A New Dawn, in which Hera and Kanan meet each other for the first time. It wasn’t a long time together, but Kanan fell in love with her from the start. We got a glimpse of what a good pilot she was in the book. In the book Rise of the Empire, that also includes A New Dawn, there is a short story were we see a brand new Hera take on the Empire for the first time, not only showing good pilot skills, but also what a good heart she has.

In the show, Rebels, Hera usually flies The Ghost. She got to fly the new experimental B-Wing, and really showed that she was a great pilot overall, and not just of her beloved Ghost. And then her great flying and good leadership saw her promoted to the leader of Phoenix Squadron, an A-Wing team of fliers.

The A-Wing comes with Hera in her trademark puffy orange pants. She has traded her goggles for a proper flight mask, though she does not wear a full helmet, probably due to her lukku which would give some trouble to putting a helmet on.

She is a typical 5 POA figure. Head, shoulders, and legs. I am still really bummed that this is the way Hasbro decided to go with the Star Wars figures. The Clone Wars era toys had so many POA, and now we are back to 5.

Hera sits in the cockpit of the A-Wing with no problem. It is a bit wide in there, so when she is flying around, she does bump around a bit. There is no place for her to store her blaster. In the Force Awakens and Rogue One vehicles, there were added holders for weapons. Not so this time around.

The A-Wing is such a recognizable fighter, from the flat pointed nose, to the giant fins off the back. The color scheme is really well executed, with tan, grey,white and burgundy. That is a lot of color on a small ship like this. This is a slightly different version than we see in the later Star Wars movies. This is the unmodified version where the fins completely go through the large engines. The nose is also flat all of the way across. In The Battle of Endor, we got to see the modified A-Wings in action that were much faster with less armor and weaponry.

The details are really well done. This is a new model, so the lines are nice and crisp. From the details of the engines to the panel lines on the body.

Then there is the glaring extra on this one. Apparently we need things that fire, and fire incorrectly for the show. We saw this with the giant Millennium Falcon that had an opening front end, the U-Wing with a drop-down gun, and now the A-Wing with a giant cannon attached to the bottom. All of that to fire a Nerf projectile. Ugh! I do not want to fire a Nerf projectile from the bottom of my A-Wing. What I want is an accurate version of the ship for the first time in forever. That being said, the firing mechanism is super strong, so the people that actually want to fire the cannon will have a lot of fun with the two projectiles included in the box.

From the back you can see the great details of the engines. Some really nice work went into making this look fantastic.

The underside shows the giant cannon and the holders for the two projectiles. Unfortunately, there is no way to actually take the cannon off the bottom. It is molded into the bottom of the ship. There goes that plan of a remodel.

 

Overall, I like this ship. I had yet to have an A-Wing in my vehicle collection. I have yet to see one in the store, but they are going for a really good price as of today on Amazon.


The Phantom – Star Wars Rebels – Hasbro

When Episodes 1-3 were coming out, I was very into the 3.75 inch Star Wars figures. I have armies of Clone Troopers and ships up the wazoo. As we moved toward The Force Awakens and beyond, I was turned off by the lack of articulation, with Hasbro going back to the 5-point bodies, but still charging the same amount or more. Rebels came out, but it was on Disney DX, which I was not going to pay extra for on an already crazy priced cable TV package.

Finally it came out on DVD and I got it from the library to watch. Needless to say I absolutely loved the new team and the show. The problem then was that I wanted to ships, but they had been long out, and most of the stores don’t have them any more. And online was crazy for pricing. In comes Amazon Warehouse Deals. They sell items that may not look too beautiful, but that is generally just in the packaging, and the insides are okay. I found The Phantom for a good price and pounced on it.

When it arrived, I was not surprised to see the box really scratched up, dented, and taped back together. I have bought a lot of stuff through the Warehouse, and I have only ever had one item missing parts, so I was not worried by the look of the box.

Inside we get The Phantom all closed up, like it looks when it is attached to The Ghost. This is a pretty standard type vehicle for Star Wars. It has the look, and the details, but it is slightly undersized compared to how the show’s ship would actually be.

There is an opening cockpit that can hold one figure. In the actual ship, there is space for two seats as well as room behind for 2 more seats, so it is already on the small side.

The back end opens up and allows for the seating of one more figure, and a droid, with some extra room to spare. In the show, there are drop seats that line the side. They are molded in there, but don’t function. The back part is a bit closer in look, but I would like to have seen the back door open, since there are a lot of scenes with the characters hanging off the back.

One of the best gimmicks of this ship is the fold out wings. They fold out by hand and stay in position as you swoop the ship around. I was worried that the wings would be really floppy, but they stay right where they should.

When the wings fold out, the engines are exposed along the sides, and they are amazing. The details are spectacular.

The front guns can slide out of the covers. I went through the whole first season of the show, and didn’t notice just how far out the front guns extend from the front of the ship. They are SO long.

There are also cannons that slide out along the edge of the wings. This is not a part of the design of The Phantom, but an addition to the toy only.

Now this Phantom is outdated, since season 2 when Hera met with Quarrie and ended up with a much needed upgrade. They added a droid socket and an engine upgrade to allow for a hyperdrive. That also lets Chopper drive the ship from outside the ship, and the team relies on him more after that.

I love this ship, and I am glad I was able to get my hands on it. It is now happily flying around my hobby room amongst the other Star Wars ships.


First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter – 3.75 inch scale – The Force Awakens

I was able to do a hard pass on most of the 3.75 inch Star Wars toys. For the most part, I love them. Before, we would get really good vehicles and lots and lots of characters to play with. I have a whole bunch of figures from Episodes 1-3, as well as some other figures that came out along with those. Somewhere along the way, Hasbro went back to the old 5 points of articulation. That saves a lot of money, but the figures were still the same price. On top of that, they came out with The Black Series 3.75 inch figures that did have all of the good articulation, but the prices are insane. With the lack of good figures, and really high prices on the vehicles, it was pretty easy to pass on the vehicles.

Today I found the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter at ROSS, marked down from $30 to $16.99. That is a great markdown, and at 40% off, that was the right number to get me to pull the trigger.

I could tell just pulling the TIE out of the box that I was going to really like this vehicle. It comes in a lot of parts. The old TIEs just had the wings removed. This one has two wings, the body, the cockpit hatch, the bottom gun mechanism, two firing blaster bolts, and the antenna array.

First off, I busted the TIE Pilot out of the box. He looks rather TIE Pilot like. He has his all-black suit with matching black helmet and chest-mounted breathing apparatus. The helmet is an update from the Imperial TIE pilots, this time around looking more similar to the First Order Stormtrooper helmet. He comes with a blaster. Always nice to have if you actually survive being shot down on one of these things.

Looking inside the TIE before it is put together, you can see two seats. Since they made the pilots without knees, they had to have them sitting with their legs out straight. That will not work to have them sitting back to back, so they are side to side, with their legs facing opposite directions. All of this could have been more realistic to the movie, had they given the pilots knees. Then they would have had to do the same for Finn and Poe, since kids would also want them to play in there too.

In the canopy, there are tabs that allow the pilot to store their holdout blasters. What a great touch. Many of the older ships have guns rattling around in there, since there wasn’t a place to keep them. Now there is. And a place for two, so each pilot can have a gun. Nicely done Hasbro!

The details on the solar collectors is amazing. The colors are backwards from the old TIEs with the body parts being black, and the solar collectors changed to a grey color.

Once together, this is one fantastic mode. It is easy to see where the upgrades to the new TIE/sf are located. The original TIE/LN models did not have an antenna array, and they were strictly a one-seater. When the First order updated the TIE/LN to the TIE/fo, the armaments and shields were upgraded. For the Special Forces, they needed something a little extra, so that is where the TIE/sf came in. The first designation is the bright red patch on the left side of the cockpit. This is reminiscent of the 181st Imperial Fighter Wing that flew TIE Interceptors with a red stripe on the wings.  You can see very robust attachment points from the cockpit arms to the wings. That is a lot stronger than the standard TIE configuration.

The TIE/sf is equipped with the same chin-mounted laser system as the TIE/fo. It then has the addition of a turret that can fire forward or backward.

The greatest gimmick that the TIEs ever came with were spring loaded wings. This one is no different. What they did though was hide the buttons better to blend in with the body. On some of the TIEs that have the spring wings, they tend to kind of fall off. These really pop off well, and add to the playability.

The antenna array folds down as well as swivels. I am sure there is a kid out there that will love the little extra play they can do with this.

Looking at the back end of the TIE, it is clear that there is a lot of new stuff going on from the standard TIE. First off, there is a window. The gunner can actually see out the back, rather than relying on weapon systems alone. There are engines back there, but they are more robust than the old engines that looked like tiny openings. That is because these are capable Hyperdrive engines. A new touch that the standard TIE did not have. If you were left behind, when the capital ship left, it was a long ride back to wherever you were going.

 

This is a great ship. If I can find any others from this line at the discount stores, I will be all over them. I would love to get the standard TIE/fo, to be able to see them side by side. There are also a couple of X-Wings I would not mind having too.


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