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RussUAE
11-29-2003, 11:36 PM
Finally got this thing yesterday, and I must admit to being blown away.

I had been overly excited about it anyway, but set out my thoughts below:

Initially, I was surprised at the size of the card. Photos I'd seen didn't really dot it justice, and it will stand out on a star wars rack from afar. Somehow I'd been expecting a card similar sized to the 3 packs (silly now I think about it). It's a much heavier type of card too.

Anyway, onto the figure.

I was surprised to see how soft the plasticwas that they'd made it from. In fact rubber is probably a more suitable term. The softest material I can think of for any other star wars item thus far. However, this is not a criticism, because it works!

Paint job is good too - nice cream colour, dirtied in the appropriate places. Fabulous sculpt.

Size was a little smaller than I'd expected. But I was comparing it with the vintage version in my mind - which I'll admit I might be remebering differently to how it actually was. Does anyone have a good photo for comparing the scale of a wampa to actual film characters? Again, the size works fine.

It stands just fine which is good. Limited articulation, but enough. And the right arm comes off - even leaving a bloodied wound, allowing for some good diorama possibilities.

Now the ice cave... This is truly awesome. I got the Luke Hoth at the same time and together they are fantastic. What's more is that it really works. It holds up properly, no sagging or leaning. Defnitely the best accessories in a long long time.

All in all, one of the best items released by Hasbro to date.

plasticfetish
11-30-2003, 02:16 AM
Wow!

Lucky you ... I think you're the first person that I've read of, to have found one of these. And the Hoth Luke as well? That's great ... I'm glad you liked them, can't wait to see these myself. Very cool!

So, when you say it's soft ... is it made of the same material as the Tauntaun from the Hoth sets? That's a soft vinyl material.

RussUAE
11-30-2003, 03:27 AM
Nope, really feels like rubber to me (not very knowledgable about these things, so probably is vinyl). It seems a lot softer than the stomach on my Hoth Tauntaun. This might just be because it is thinner than that used on the Tauntaun.

The legs and arms are hollow, so it is very squashable. Like I said, it works though. So all is well.

I got it from an online store. Currently my whole collection comes from online shopping - as it seems no stores around me will be stocking anything until Episode 3.

Turbowars
12-06-2003, 01:38 PM
Oh yeah he's soft all right. I just opened him and got a cheap high from the smell of the plastic and paint. He has 2 points of articulation at the waist. Kind of cool I guess. I really like the way the fur drapes over the other parts of the boby. The Tauntaun body part fits nicely into his right hand and month. His teeth hold it in place. He is a bit top heavy and hasbro realy should have used the hard plactic on the legs. I give it a 8 out of 10

plasticfetish
12-06-2003, 04:21 PM
Oh yeah he's soft all right. I just opened him and got a cheap high from the smell of the plastic and paint.
Try putting him in the freezer for 20 minutes ... they may have just packed these up before the plastic was fully cured again. That's how a bunch of my other figures came, all soft and rubbery, they harden up pretty good and stay that way after a chill in the fridge.

Oh ... and BTW, Turbo, where'd you find yours???

Turbowars
12-06-2003, 04:49 PM
Try putting him in the freezer for 20 minutes ... they may have just packed these up before the plastic was fully cured again. That's how a bunch of my other figures came, all soft and rubbery, they harden up pretty good and stay that way after a chill in the fridge.

Oh ... and BTW, Turbo, where'd you find yours???Entertainment Earth. I live pretty close. Thanks for the freezer idea.

darthzirock
12-07-2003, 01:42 AM
Does anyone have a good photo for comparing the scale of a wampa to actual film characters?

According to several sources, the Wampa is roughly 14-15 feet tall. The original man-in-a-monster-suit Wampa on the set of Empire was about 12 feet tall, but it looked so bad it was just about completely edited out of the film. The Databank at the official site lists him as 3 meters, or roughly 10 feet tall. I think this last measurement is the most accurate, given the footage in Empire: SE, as well as the height of the Wampa cave's ceiling.

AmanaMatt
12-07-2003, 06:19 AM
Based on the new figure, the scale of this would be it at 8 1/2' or maybe 9' - standing totally straight, which this fig really looks cool (and stands easier) chopping down on the meat at a bit of a hunch.


All in all, a very nice piece and way better (imo) over the prior Hasbro attempt. The dual waist articulation is nice as is the detailing (overall). Of the ones I have seen (at F&S then retail) the dirty fur detail can widly vary: some I saw looked very dirty while others were just moderately.

jjreason
12-07-2003, 12:40 PM
This is probably about the most jealously I've fealt about other people having an item since the first shuttles were arriving. I can't wait to get this toy....

:envious: :) Congrats on the early finds, guys.

Tycho
12-09-2003, 03:06 PM
The Wampa smells good too. Not like Mouse Droid Plastic, but like Playdoh!

It does. I used to sniff Playdoh along with my action figures when I was a kid, and I'd be the one to be able to tell you: the Wampa does smell like Playdoh!

Anyway, as long as Luke is part of the discussion, you can put his goggles on him, but they are way too big for his head.

However, with his bug eyes, this is a great way to use your SW toys to play Bettlejuice vs. the Abominable Snowman!

All fun aside for a moment, this set (put together) is truly awesome and I'm really satisfied with my purchase.

Meanwhile, I also want to note that the Wampa splits apart at the waist like Darth Maul. It is not intentional, but it's easy to separate and re-attach his two halves in case your ghost of Obi-Wan Kenobi decides he can still weild a lightsaber ;)

plasticfetish
12-13-2003, 02:22 AM
The Wampa smells good too. Not like Mouse Droid Plastic, but like Playdoh!
The Wampa smells great! Yeah ... kind of does have a Playdoh smell, you're right Tycho. I think it's the paint ... but there's also a pretty good strong plastic smell. I'm kind of getting a buzz off of it really.

As for things like plastic and vinyl, yadda-yadda ... the arms and legs are made of soft vinyl, the rest is hard plastic. It's a great combo I think. Really well done toy ... and the base is super too.

Wampa, wampa, wampa!

Turbowars
12-13-2003, 07:23 PM
The freezer did the trick! My SW room still smells like a Wampa. I almost passed out when I came into the room the next day.:classic:

Tycho
12-13-2003, 07:42 PM
Cool. You mean using the freezer actually preserves the new figure smell?

I must have missed that bit of information or forgotten it. The Mouse Droid Sniffers' Association would be honored if you taught an extension class in this technique, Turbowars!

Meanwhile, it was also very fond of you to put your Wampa in the freezer so he felt more like he was at home - Hoth is cold and all.

You've actually made me reconsider doing my Hoth scenes in my freezer. Friends tease me that I use every available bit of cabinet and pantry space for my Star Wars dioramas, and the freezer, even if I don't. But why not take good advise, especially after I've heard it so often.

This is the natural environment for our Cold Weather figures - and you've demonstrated it preserves the smell. I wonder what it could do for those TaunTaun guts that comes in the 5-pack? Cold and slimey! They'll be authentically movie-accurate!

Great idea, Turbowars! I'm logging off now to got put my stuff in the freezer! :crazed:

Turbowars
12-13-2003, 07:56 PM
LOL Tycho, it was Plasticfetish that gave me the idea to put him in the freezer, because I meantioned the Wampas arms and legs were very soft. He said that the plastic probably wasn't cured correctly and the freezer would do the trick. Well it did. That would be funny to open a freezer and see a Wampa staring at you.:crazed: Please do it and send us some pics!:cool:

fishyfett
12-29-2003, 04:05 PM
I tried my best NOT to buy this figure because I already have the POTF version that came with the Hoth Luke figure. Needless to say, after ignoring it 5 times, I finally said 'What the heck, there's nothing else to buy, so let me get this one that's the least damaged of all (we're talking Wal-mart here). I left 2 more hanging at the pegs. Then of course, I have to get the companion piece (Hoth Luke) and bought the last one as well.

As soon as I got home, I looked at and compared both Wampas. Let me just say that the Ultra version kicked the POTF's @$$ big time. Without even opening it, the Ultra Wampa is just more superior in paint details, sculpting, attitude, articulation and accessories.

Needless to say, I'm glad I finally decided to get one. :D

Tycho
12-29-2003, 04:49 PM
I went through the same thing you did FishyFett - I know there will now be a LOT of resculpts just logically thinking about it (now that a vast majority of all movie possibilities, especially for main and secondary characters have been done), and since making dioramas is my hobby, as well as some nostalgia for toys even 1-8 years old (the modern line as it is), I'm not out to buy resculpts and would rather build my armies.

Don't need the new Lando Skiff, etc. - and I have enough self control to not spend the money if I see stuff I don't have, but which is not on my list. I've bought tons of Clone Troopers, and could do with 4 more most likely. No clones? No money leaves my wallet. I have control.

So I saw the Wampa since pictures appeared on the web. Great looking figure. Finally, still before it hit stores, Entertainment Earth's catalog comes in my mail, and it's nearly a life-size pic on the cover. I compare them and actually decided then to buy this figure -especially with how you can make a Wampa cave out of the set up with Luke, right?

I buy it when it reaches stores a little while later, still wondering if I'll regret it.

I never have. I have to say it's been one of my most satisfying purchases, and I added a second Wampa scene to my Hoth repetoire: Luke hanging in the new Wampa Cave, and Luke (lightsaber drawn) fighting the old Wampa, turned so you can't really see how much less in comparison it is next to the new one. The whole cave wall thing, sort of separates the two scenes, and like I said, I'm quite satisfied with it.

They did a great job. And I still can turn down most resculpts and stuff I don't need. Didn't buy that C-3PO. Don't plan on it. The escape pod's too small for my taste, and I'd like one even MORE detailed than what Hasbro did.

plasticfetish
12-30-2003, 03:31 AM
Tycho, you forgot to mention the best thing about the new Wampa. (Ahem... sniff, sniff.)

Tycho
12-30-2003, 04:58 AM
LOL, true. But that had nothing to do with why I bought him, because I didn't know how he'd smell until I'd decided to open him.

Though I was hardly the first person to open an Ultra Wampa on this website, I was quite surprised that no one else who did thought to report on it if they'd shoved their Wampa up their nose. But curiously enough, nobody else bothered to do this.

I've made the case many times before, that smelling new figures is one of the first thing a large majority of us do with new product. Stuff only smells this way when it's new - freezing it, little plastic baggies, and other tactics not withstanding.

That's part of the whole point of enjoying your figures with the nasal sense: it mostly works when you find something NEW when you go out Star Wars shopping.

The fact that when you get something new that you wanted and you are satisfied is directly related to how sniffing figures makes you happy.

I mean, go sniff your old, loose Mon Mothma figure. Smell anything? I'd be willing to almost surely bet you didn't. It's a whole different ball game if you'd just taken her off a fresh blister card.

Again, that's why sniffing new figures is so satisfying. And the Wampa smells like Play-Doh.

fishyfett
12-30-2003, 01:08 PM
Tycho, you forgot to mention the best thing about the new Wampa. (Ahem... sniff, sniff.) I'd rather sniff Padme or Leia.....LOL!!!!!

But anyway, you're right about self-control, Tycho. Sometimes, it's just hard to NOT buy the new figures especially when they look way better than the previous version. I'm definitely gonna get the new Skiff Lando, just because of that. I don't mind upgrading my collection and chucking the ones I feel were obsolete.

On the other hand, I refused to buy that new Hoth Rebel, just like the repackaged figures like Leia, Han, Luke and Vader, just because they come w/ stands. Stands??? What the.....No, thanks. I'm a sucker once, but not twice.

And by the way, whatever happened to your annual Best and Worst SW toys with Sir Steve and Adm. Thrawn??? I've never heard from Thrawn anymore either. What's the deal??? I used to enjoy reading all that stuff. Fill us in, will you?? ;)

plasticfetish
12-30-2003, 04:23 PM
I think Thrawn may have joined the French Foreign Legion... or the circus.

That's part of the whole point of enjoying your figures with the nasal sense: it mostly works when you find something NEW when you go out Star Wars shopping.
You know, I never really gave it this much thought before, but I'd suppose it has a lot to do with smell being a trigger for old memories. Smell is the key sense for triggering memories, and in this case perhaps it really does have to do with subconsciously reminding us of those "new toy" moments we'd had as kids. (Nice to think that there's even more regressive juvenile motivation behind this hobby. :rolleyes: ) Hmm, for me, that new toy smell really does kind of conjure up Christmas morning when my sister and I would sit down and rip open all of our packages. We'd just kind of wallow there in a pile of shreddings and new plastic fumes for a while... very blissful to be sure. Every time I break open a new toy today, I'm sort of getting a brief "hit" of childhood memories.

Hmm, kind of pathetic that my childhood revolves around that new plastic smell. But, on the other hand... c'mere Wampa -- sniff, sniff.

Tycho
12-30-2003, 10:11 PM
Heard 2 rumors concerning Thrawn, and I don't think they're negative at all, so I'll post them:

1) After a vacation from SSG, he is coming back as our Comics and Books Editor.

2) He has quit collecting SW toys. I don't know if that means he doesn't buy ANYTHING any more - because look at BigBarada. He's a cool guy that gave up on C-o-l-l-e-c-t-i-n-g, but he was quite satisfied by buying Ephant Mon, and the Imperial Dignitary I believe.

That doesn't mean they are not fans of SOME of the toys, it just means they stopped buying everything. Thrawn was a very serious collector - variations, every product, you name it. I admired his persistance at it, even if I cringed at things you'd have to buy: $$$ for Master Replicas, Code 3 stuff, and extra cents for Rubies stuff and PEZ dispensers - not to mention re-releases like Darth Maul in a plastic drinking cup :rolleyes:

But I'd guess Thrawn still watches the news and checks out the pictures of what's coming out and he'll be invited to do our BEST / WORST of 2003 as it's been an SSG tradition for what, 6 years now?

And I am kicking that piece off, but it's not 2003 yet - and I'm going horseback riding and partying at a resort in Arizona for New Year's Eve, and won't be back until Sunday. NOTE: I will not sniff the horses. I've ridden enough to know better than that! (but polished saddles smell good before you put them on the horses!)

In any case, I'd look for the BEST OF -WORST OF 2003 around Tuesday, possibly sooner.

I think people already know by my signature what'll be the obvious pick for my fav of the year - but it's a darn good figure!

fishyfett
12-30-2003, 11:58 PM
Thanks for the update, Tycho. Now, I have something to look forward to. I do miss Thrawn's Q&A sessions. I mean, he doesn't pull any punches and says it the way he sees it. I know some fans get irked by his reviews, but I think he knows more about this hobby and its good and bad points than he cares to admit.

And Plastic, I know exactly what you mean by the 'new' toy smell. That's why I'm holding off on my carded figures for now. The last I opened a whole lot of them, I nearly passed out from all that plastic smell. lol

Well, perhaps I'll give it a try again, see if it will bring some memories. :)

JediTricks
01-06-2004, 05:52 AM
Not to step on any toes, but I'm going to do a review like the others I've been doing lately, and since I don't want to take up extra thread space when not necessary (thus avoiding honking off the Reviews moderator ), here is where it shall live ;).

----


Wampa Wampa Wampa! (Not to be confused with "Marsha Marsha Marsha!") After 5 years on the bench, the Wampa finally gets a new figure as a premiere member of the new Saga Ultra line. Trading in his action gimmick for additional poseability, a box for a big card, and sporting a new base, this Wampa is ready to interact with the recent Luke Hoth Attack basic figure.

Packaging: 3.5/5
This packaging is big, about an inch wider and 3 inches taller than Saga v1's $10-pricepoint packaging; it's also on heavier cardstock, it's actually corrugated cardboard (you can see this at the top) -- personally, I think it's too big since it requires more shelfspace than previous deluxes. The graphics' greatest achievement on this v2 packaging is that it really looks like an upsized basic figure card, the "Star Wars" logo is very large, and the film title is on the gold border to complete the sense of fitting in. The cardback and bubble insert complete the feel of being part of the Saga v2 crowd, only bigger.

The front and back movie-based pictures are the same, the special edition Wampa looking up from a snack - this is a good photo which doesn't entirely help the figure in some other departments, more on that later. The cardback has co-sells for other Saga Hoth figures as well as smaller ones for the other wave 1 Ultras; the Hoth co-sells are pretty much shipping now or have shipped recently, which is better than that Ultra C-3PO. The cardback shows the "disarmed" Wampa (which I notice they removed the unattractive peg that is on the actual figure) and a shot of this set interacting with the basic Luke Hoth Attack figure.

Inside the bubble tray are 2 twisties around the base, 1 around the figure, a clear rubber band to hold the meaty bone in the hand, and thin cellophane wrapped around most of the bone, I guess to ensure the paint won't rub off on the figure's hand during shipping. The bone is held in the wrong hand, but that's no big deal; just be aware that upon opening that bubble, you will be met by one of the most foul stenches thanks to the vinyl and other odd materials used here.

Sculpting: 4/5
This is a good sculpt of the ESB:Special Edition version of the creature, whereas the POTF2 figure looked more like the classic version so now we have one of each. The head and central torso have a good hairy sculpt to them, sharp and well-defined. The head sculpt has a pretty good look to it, though having the head as a separate pieces gives the figure more of a chin than he should. There's even ears near the back of the head, and the cut ends at both sides of the shoulder on the removable arm are sculpted with pattern instead of being flat - though Hasbro did have to leave an unsightly white peg sticking out of the shoulder to hold the arm in place. And the torso is actually several "skirt" sections for improved posing options.

However, on the nit-picking end, the teeth are too even compared to the movie picture on the packaging, and the figure is about half a head shorter than the POTF2 version - though I'm not sure that's entirely a bad thing. There's also the matter of the head being sculpted so that it's difficult and unattractive to turn; and his main horns stick out too much. On the big-deal end, the limbs are made out of this unpleasant vinyl material not unlike a dog's chewtoy, it's very soft and doesn't have detail as sharp as the torso or head sections. The claws and insides of the paws are nowhere near as nice as the earlier version.

Pose: 3.5/5
This would have been a 4 or possibly higher if not for 3 things. First, there's the issue of the head, it can be turned, but it's sculpted to only look good in 1 position, one that's cocked to the right a bit. Second, the left arm sticks out too far, and is bent at the elbow a little too much and too high. Finally, the big one, the soft material for the legs makes it difficult to stand the figure in most positions, such as totally upright or hunched over. Poor ol' Wampa.

However, this figure does have a fairly neutral stance, can look like he's swiping at Luke on his tauntaun, or with a little coaxing can appear to using his teeth to pull meat from his bone accessory. Things aren't quite as aligned as they should be for this, so you'll have to bend the meat slightly and turn the head a bit.

Paint: 4/5
The Wampa is cast in off-white color and has this light orange paint wash applied to many areas of his body - he is not the only Wampa toy to have this coloring. However, what is new comes in the form of blood drippings from his mouth, this Wampa is a'feasting! Both of these areas vary greatly from figure to figure, I've seen some Wampas with way too much orange, and not one figure has blood that matches another - mine has sort of a blood goatee going - so be choosy.

Another thing to be watchful about is an area that annoys me quite a bit - for some strange reason, even though the movie picture on the card shows totally black eyes, Hasbro chose to give the Wampa white eyes with black pupils which totally changes the character of the face from an ominous monster to a sad guy in a suit. And since the eyes are set pretty far back, it is going to take a steady hand to correct this; being that deep into the head also means that you will need to be picky less you end up with a googly-eyed Wampa.

Articulation: 4.5/5
The Ultra Wampa has 6 points of articulation, though the design of the midsection makes it seem like there are several more. Here, we have standard neck, standard shoulders on a slight diagonal upwards bias, standard hips, and a ball-jointed mid-torso -- that's twice as much as the POTF2 figure with only standard shoulder, limited-universal shoulder, and standard waist.

The neck is not useless by any means, but not attractive in some ways once used even though I think he looks better staring ahead or to the left rather than his default right gaze. I wish the left shoulder was universal-jointed instead of traditional, the way it sticks out doesn't suit me and uni-jointing here would add more pose potential. The arm is so soft that you can bend is back and release for swiping action, but this is not on purpose and could end up mucking up the arm.

The legs can move independently and have normal range of motion, though not enough to allow him to hunch down like when he's first gnawing on that tauntaun. The mid-torso is a very cool joint, probably the neatest thing in the set, it's a large ball joint surrounded by 3 separate "skirts" so that when you tilt him in any direction, the skirts adjust to have the bend appear more natural; it's pretty clever, I'd like to see it on a Chewie figure.

Accessories: 4/5 (Tauntaun bone); 2.5/5 (Hoth cave base)
First off, the bone, which is almost complete covered in meat that's painted red with pink accents; each end has a little off-white bone color painted on as well. The bone is sculpted to be held in the figure's right hand, specifically with his index finger fitting into a guide and other areas sculpted to fit the other fingers - it tends to want to slip out of position easily, I suspect because it's made for a harder hand. The upper half of the meat is made to look as if the Wampa is pulling it away from the bone with his teeth, in which the end of this segment actually fits (although because of the soft limbs and preposed head sculpt, this meat segment actually ends up in his eye unless you help the poor guy out).

Then there's this cave base which is a mishmosh of good and bad situations. First the good: there's a pile of white bones with some subtle pink paint off to one side, reminiscent of the film even if it's not entirely accurate geography. There's also some snowy stalactite/stalagmite design here that adds character and reminds one of some of the cave walls. Finally, the base's column attaches to Luke Hoth Attack's base to let Luke hang upside-down from the film while his lightsaber hilt fits into a hole near the pile of bones on the other side of the base; the underside of this hole has a small box built in possibly to keep the hilt from going too far in.

Unfortunately, there are some big annoyances with this accessory as well: the actual base is made of this soft clear blue plastic which also smells kinda nasty and is painted light blue with white "frosting" (luckily you can't see the base is clear except from the bottom), while the column is cast in a translucent blue that doesn't match either the rest of this base or the translucent blue of the Luke Hoth's base - I honestly don't know why they didn't just do white with a few very slight blue accents. The column tries to deal with that mismatch by having fine white overspray at the top which is not totally unsuccessful but comes as a poor fix to a problem that shouldn't have existed at all. Since they're done in translucent blues, the column and Luke's base together look a tad too much like a geyser from a burst water main. The bottom of the column is glued into the base and has more of the light blue with white frosting paint where the 2 sections meet, though for some reason Hasbro also sneezed some not-as-fine white paint overspray at this area and it does not look very good at all. The center of the base has what looks like over a dozen humanoid footprints sculpted in for some unknown reason, it doesn't convey the powdery floor of the cave to me one bit.

And then there's what I consider to be the biggest irritation of the set, when interacting with Luke Hoth, the saber is in the wrong place in the base! If you were looking straight down on the base, the floor should be about 90 degrees counter-clockwise from where it is so that Luke can reach for it with his right arm which is even specially sculpted for the task. As it is now, the figure has to look to his left to see his saber, and if you want him to reach for it with his correct arm, you have to twist him at the waist almost 90 degrees, and it still doesn't nicely line up and just looks wrong. There's no way that I can see to connect Luke's base in any different orientation either, it's sculpted specifically to fit just this one way - one of the prototypes Hasbro showed at a convention last year that looked like the column could rotate at its middle which would have probably fixed this issue, but this didn't happen.

Overall Grade: B+
Despite its failure in the cave, not to mention those weak limbs and that smell, this Ultra Wampa set is not a bad purchase. And while he might not be as heavy as Ephant Mon, he is about an inch taller which alone makes him a deluxe figure in my book. So you get a new Wampa figure that's not just a brick and a nice protein-rich snack for him to enjoy, plus a place for Hoth Luke to... hang out (ugh! sorry folks, bad pun) - all for only around ten bucks.

Kidhuman
01-06-2004, 08:51 AM
I think this toys is awesome. It is a good sculpt and I love the blood and Taun Taun chunk. I love the fact that it interacts with another toy(luke hoth). Hasbro needs to keep up with a good quality line like they have been doing.