Friday, June 16, 2017

2017 Lego Star Wars Scout Trooper and Speeder Bike

This is the most anticipated toy i've been looking forward to this year. The speeder bike chase is the best thing to come out of ROTJ - by all accounts, the biker scout is the most competent of the Imperial's troopers, unless confronted by their only weakness: Ewoks.

I've been looking out for a new version of the speeder bike, the last time i bought its toy version is practically a decade ago (Hasbro's Galactic Heroes). Before that, i had the 3-3/4" Clone Wars version, which was terrible - the front outrigger posts were made of bendy plastic and deformed if you didn't store it properly. As a kid, the vintage was one of my favourite toys, which had the gimmick where you pressed a button and the bike would 'explode'. How much do i like the speeder bike? I bought a Desert Skiff Lego set for the sole purpose of making my own speeder bike MOC.

Anyway, i've been itching to buy a new toy of the speeder bike and was eyeing the Bandai kit, which looked like a fun build. I was having trouble tracking one down, so i looked at the 6" version by Hasbro but for whatever reason i didn't pull the trigger - it's a step bigger than the 3-3/4" but i'm so burned out from that figure scale that i don't see the 6" version as significant improvement. So then i looked at Hasbro's old 12" scale toy, but then i realized i don't really collect at that scale and it'd be huge and unwieldy to display if you have limited shelf space. When the 2017 Star Wars Lego sets were announced i was stoked and knew this was purchase-on-sight.

This if my 1st experience with both Hero Factory and Technic builds - neither of which i'm a big fan of, to be frank. I just prefer the traditional bricks and studs construction. It's Lego though, so its still a fun, engaging build and its interesting how the internal structure is put together and the external shapes are formed using only existing parts and profile.

I finish the figure 1st - at 10" its slightly bigger than what i'd like, which is 8-9" scale - I'm a fan of Hasbro's Marvel Signature Series (based on the 8" scale Mego figures) a scale that i think hits the sweet spot for both playing and displaying. The figure is gappy in some areas but once you sit him on the bike its less obvious.

The bike is pretty huge at 18" long, but isn't overwhelming if you display it as a desk toy. The missile shooting gimmick makes the undercarriage blaster too bulky to be accurate. The stand is built into the toy, which also functions as the 'handle' for the missile shooting gimmick - the trigger is design so that you hold the stand and shoot the missile like a gun. The rear flaps are articulated so you can flip them up to reveal repulsors in flight mode. The only thing that looks off to me is the detailing of the front outrigger, which is a tad bulky. There's a few stickers but the only essential one is for the control panel.

Overall, it's a great piece for display. It's not detailed enough to be considered as the definitive toy of the character/vehicle, but it's Lego so you can tell non-collector friends 'oh, its a model', its sizeable without taking too much space, has a nice heft and still decently sized for you to whoosh it around the room and go PEW, PEW!

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Titans Return Hot Rod

Titans Return comes out slow here at major retailers - especially now that the new movie stuff is coming out. It took 3 restock to put out all of wave 3 (and i'm still missing the legends class) but he finally turned up on the shelves to complete 3rd wave deluxes -Titan Returns Hot Rod.

Hot Rod's bot mode is...just okay, i suppose. The torso could use a bit more bulk, and the hips on mine are loose. But he's very poseable and looks good overall. His 'wings'/spoiler could use to sit higher too, since its a prominent feature of the design.

While the bot mode is kinda meh, fortunately the car mode is GREAT. Yet another rendition of a futuristic sports car, he's curvier than the Generations version and bulkier than the Animated version but now he has a working cockpit. If you're gonna ride, ride in style.

Even the back of the car is nicely detailed (although lacking paint apps) - i like how his knees are worked into, uh, exhaust vent thingies.