Just a day after our TFA Blu-ray release contest, we have another surprise for our readers. An associate of mine (who we’ll call “Poseidon”) is guest-writing an article today, bringing you guys a review of an exclusive set of Star Wars: The Black Series toys from Entertainment Earth called “Imperial Forces”. In addition, we’re giving one of you a shot at getting a brand new set as a gift.
First here’s a brief review of the set. For the giveaway contest scroll down to the bottom of the article.
Loaded with accessories and articulation, this four-figure set of Imperial goodness is Entertainment Earth’s first exclusive in Star Wars: The Black Series 6-inch line. These three Empire-loving figures and a droid are ready to be played with or proudly displayed, so let’s dive right in.
Well done, Hasbro! The Sandtrooper Sergeant, a Black Series debut, has accessories galore, an excellent paint job, and a whole bunch of articulation. Sandtrooper Sarge has articulation at the neck, shoulders, biceps, elbows, wrists, upper torso, legs, knees, and ankles; many of these are swivel joints. He also wears a white shoulder pauldron, designating his rank, and his accessories include a large backpack, a rifle, a blaster, and a grenade launcher. The survival pack can either be worn on the Sergeant’s back or not; the figure looks good either way.
The 6-inch Sandtrooper Sergeant mirrors his movie counterpart very well, and all that extra articulation gives him a wide range of poses. But where Hasbro really did a fine job on this figure is with the paint. Like most Sandtroopers and Stormtroopers, the Sergeant is mostly a mixture of white and black paint. It’s the overall sand-colored wash that adds a lot of detail and texture to this figure. There’s sand gathered in the crevice of his chest plate, sand around his knee, sand on back of helmet. Someone paid a lot of attention to this figure’s paint job; even the weapons are painted a range of black, silver, grey and olive. Most impressive!
The packaging describes Sandtrooper Sergeant as follows: “Imperial Sandtroopers carry out the will of the Emperor in the harsh, arid environments of the galaxy’s desert worlds.” Little known fact about the Sandtroopers…. They never complain about the sand. They don’t gripe about it being coarse and rough and irritating and getting everywhere. They just get out there in the sand and do their damn jobs. No wonder the Emperor likes them.
The Crimson Stormtrooper is making his debut as a toy for the first time ever. That’s right, this bright red Stormtrooper has never been immortalized in plastic in any size, not just 6 inches. So, welcome to the world of action figures, Crimson Stormie! Like the Sergeant Sandtrooper, Crimson Stormtrooper features a great deal of articulation. He has articulation at the neck, shoulders, biceps, elbows, wrists, upper torso, legs, knees, and ankles; many of these are swivel joints. Crimson Stormtrooper can also share the Sergeant’s backpack, if you want to shake things up and teach your toys how to share. One difference between the two Troopers is that our Red Friend has a working holster for his blaster. Crimson Stormtrooper also arrives with a nicely-textured black and silver rifle.
Another big difference between the two super Troopers is the Crimson Stormtrooper’s paint job. It is a brilliant, shiny crimson red with not a speck of the weathered wash that made the Sandtrooper Sergeant such a standout. So, Crimson Stormtrooper may not have seen much action yet, but hey, he’s a red Stormtrooper you don’t have yet, and overall he’s pretty cool looking. He looks like he’d be right at home in Crimson Empire.
The packaging describes Crimson Stormtrooper as follows: “Specially trained for operations in the extreme temperatures of volcanic areas, these crimson-clad Stormtroopers stay cool in the heat of battle.” Let’s just hope if Crimson Stormtrooper picks any fights to the death with a former lifelong friend next to a volcano, he sticks to that higher ground. Just saying.
Lieutenant Oxixo may be an ill-fated TIE Fighter Pilot from the Star Wars Expanded Universe (or Star Wars Legends), but looking at this 6-inch action figure reveals once again what a bad-ass character design this is. Painted almost exclusively with a mix of glossy and dull black paint, this figure also features a few silver and black details along with a few spots of blue and red on his chest plate instruments. Even today, almost 40 years after we first saw A New Hope on the big screen, the TIE Fighter Pilot is an awesome mix of menace and mystery. And Hasbro does a superb job capturing that with the 6-inch Lt. Oxixo.
As far as articulation, Lieutenant Oxixo can move at the neck, shoulders, biceps, elbows, wrists, upper torso, legs, knees, and ankles; many of these are swivel joints. Like Crimson Stormtrooper, Lieutenant Oxixo has a blaster and a working holster. The tubes from his breathing apparatus disconnect from his helmet, but not from his chest plate. Like the Sandtrooper Sergeant, Lieutenant Oxixo is a Black Series debut.
The packaging describes Lieutenant Oxixo as follows: “Lt. Oxixo piloted one of the four TIE Fighters shot down while pursuing the Millennium Falcon during its escape from the Death Star before the Battle of Yavin.” Sadly, Lieutenant Oxixo, we hardly knew you, but you still make one impressive action figure.
This primarily black astromech droid features silver and rust paint details, and Hasbro has done an excellent job bringing R2-Q5 to life for its 6-inch line. Based on a droid featured in the second Death Star in Return of the Jedi, this latest toy version bears a solid resemblance to its screen image, and the droid also pairs nicely with its other Imperial Forces companions. R2-Q5 has articulation at its feet, legs, dome, and its middle leg, which can be extended down from the body by turning the droid’s dome. (Nice touch.) Overall, R2-Q5 has six points of articulation, which I have to point out is one more than what most of Hasbro’s main 3.75 action figures currently feature. (Not that we collectors are bitter at the limited articulation in Hasbro’s signature toy line… wait, what am I saying? Of course, we’re bitter! Come on, Hasbro, let’s get rid of those goofy non-Star Wars accessories and put some more articulation and better paint into the 3.75 line, a world-famous line of toys that has been around for almost 40 years! OK, sorry, end of rant.)
Most fans are thrilled when Hasbro puts out another droid or alien, so kudos to Hasbro for producing an Imperial droid in its 6-inch line. The semi-glossy black paint is sharp-looking, the silver and rust-colored details are applied perfectly, and the wiring at R2-Q5’s foot joints is a dirty gold color and the wires themselves are somewhat pliable. R2-Q5 is also a Black Series debut.
The packaging describes R2-Q5 as follows: “Entrusted with the secrets of the Emperor himself, this Imperial R2 unit once thwarted a plot to turn every droid aboard the second Death Star against the Empire.” So there you have it…. R2-Q5 is a sharp-looking Imperial droid who is also a hero…. from a certain point of view.
Overall, this gift set from Hasbro and Entertainment Earth offers a great combination of Imperial characters loaded with awesome articulation, excellent paint jobs, and solid accessories. To find out more about other exclusives from EE, go HERE. For other Star Wars products go HERE. We’ll also be giving this set away to a lucky reader (as Entertainment Earth was kind enough to give us two copies), so be sure to stay tuned to SWNN for more details.
And now to the contest.
You can win a brand new set also supplied by Entertainment Earth. Just answer the question in the form below. Put your answer in the comments section. The Twitter option is optional and can be done every day. The contest will run for 1 week and is only for US and Canada residents.
By entering this contest you agree to allow up to 12 weeks for delivery, accept the fate of packages getting lost, stolen or damaged (neither Entertainment Earth nor the host of the contest are responsible for replacement or compensation either in product or currency) and a correct, valid physical address must be provided (wrong address provided, unfortunately no shipment). This giveaway is only open for people in the US and Canada.
And the winner is Denny B. We will contact him through the email he used to sign in the contest.
Thanks for your replies and participation. Make sure to check back our site tomorrow. We will be having yet another giveaway. The prize is really awesome – not one but two Sphero BB-8s!!! Stay tuned…