I found TPM wave at WM over the weekend, including Ratts Tyerell. I basically got the ones that I wanted as openers except for a Naboo Royal Guard. I cleaned out all the vintage they had except for the two Han Ceremony figures that have been there forever. They had a bunch of the new packaged CW/Legends as well, but those pegs were pretty well full. I don't know if those are going to move very well, especially at almost $9. They also had some of the Battle Packs, but I passed on those.
Found and bought the "vintage" Maul at WM today, the first figure I've bought off the shelf in ages.
It's pretty well done; easily the best version to date, though that is admittedly not saying much. The plastic hood looks good when pressed down firmly, but otherwise is clunky and absurd. I switched the tattered cloak and plastic hood for the cloak that came with my 1999-era Sith Speeder Maul, and it looks much better. The horns actually help hold the hood in place... sort of. Why Hasbro chose to go with the plastic hood and a new cloak, when they had a more serviceable one, is beyond me.
The belt issue is no problem -- it slides around to the correct position fairly easily.
I passed on all the others that were there, singles of each except for Qui-Gon Jinn and Darth Sidious, who were absent. This will probably be the last new figure I buy off the shelf for a long while, unless I find a few of the exclusive Tusken figures, which I may get a couple of.
Happy hunting, everyone.
I had some expiring TRU rewards coupons and they had the Battle Droid, so I bought him. $10 minus the $6 in coupons, only cost me $4 and change. The BD is not short, they are identified as 6' 3" on Wookieepedia and this figure seems to come up to that height in scale, I'd say. My memory isn't perfect, but I think the test shot I handled at Comic-Con last year had cleaner rivets and different lower legs, with the cuts being a little thinner and a lot longer.
The figure's got a much more accurate sculpt than any previous, Hasbro really did a nice job getting the lines right - they even got the little piston on the underside of the head which Sideshow's recent 12" figure missed. The backpack sculpt still doesn't have the arms that meet at the shoulder, and it's too tall (even moreso than Sideshow's), and the fit isn't great, but the sculpt on the backpack looks quite nice on its own. The other antenna looks nice, the blaster looks nice and I believe it's new (it also fits the hand, which the Sideshow does not). The head sculpt has the eyes not quite right but you can tell they're trying to keep it in check - it does look odd painted in though. The neck is sculpted about 5% too small, that's maybe a millimeter at this scale, but it's noticeable to my eye, especially with the upscaled backpack so close to the head.
The figure has ball-jointed hips and shoulders; hinged elbows, knees, and ankles; a ball-jointed head, and a telescoping neck which can pivot back slightly. The hips and shoulders are fairly limited in range, you have to pop them a little out to even use them, but the joints are welcome even if they are only limitedly successful. The neck is packaged partly telescoped in, you'll want to pull it out as far as you can get it to look good. The forearms and hands are pre-posed, the right hand sculpted to hold the blaster, which it does nicely; the right forearm is sculpted with a 10-degree twist inward; the left forearm has maybe a 2-degree twist which really does nothing for the 2-handed gun-holding pose this figure should have been able to do but cannot (it's the picture on the card!). Overall, the plastic isn't as gummy as some past BDs, but definitely doesn't feel substantial enough to avoid wilting over time. The figure has 2 peg holes, and the ball-jointed hips do just barely allow both to be used on a modern standard stand, but the spread is too extreme to look good IMO, so for now I'm testing the strength on the right foot pegged into the stand and the left just freestanding, I'll report back on this when I see change, I'm hoping the ankle and knee joints will soak up some of the trouble though. Some of the joints feel quite weak individually, but so far I haven't seen signs that the figure is having any problems with that, probably due to the nature of the design being a lightweight figure in general. The thin nature of the arms lends to a little bending, but out of the package they seem to straighten up pretty well, and what I first thought was permanent bend turned out to be the subtle sculpted pose on the forearms.
The figure looks ok folded up, the head hits the backpack and pushes it off when the neck fully telescopes in, the legs look pretty good. But the arms only look so-so with their preposed nature, and the backpack doesn't have its antennae go away or a separate "telescoped-in" backpack (that one could have stowed the gun and they could have used the deployed one to fill in that hole).
Paint on the body is great, they used a mottled silver wash, it's a little dark but it does look nice overall, it scales to the weathering well. Unfortunately, the head and backpack didn't get the wash, they are clean tan plastic and it looks bad - not unusable, but definitely not ideal, and certainly not the perfection the line was intending. The head and backpack have adequate paint aside from the weathering, with black eyes and silver bands and whatnot, but the backpack doesn't sport a unit number of any kind.
I would have liked to have seen a torso joint, an upper-arm swivel, and a lower-arm swivel, but the accuracy they went for might not have allowed such things - that said, alternate arms for a 2-handed poses should have been included. The backpack not being able to stow the gun bums me out, I really think that featured tied the figure together, yet neither Hasbro's new figure nor Sideshow's figure have that feature. Also, there's a little bit of flashing and a wonky sprue-site on the head which I fear is just the limitations of the manufacturing they can get.
Bottom line: this is a nice figure in some ways, the sculpting is much more accurate than previous figures, I like the new gun and the use of additional joints, I like the paint weathering. But in almost each case, there's a caveat: sculpting doesn't quite hit the eyes or neck or backpack, there are some joints that didn't get included but should have been, and the paint is missing on the head and backpack. That said, even if they had hit everything square on, I am still at a loss to see this as a $10-figure, Battle Droids are a tough value, so they really would need those extra arms and that alternate backpack to sell me on army-building these at the TVC pricepoint.
I, too, used rewards coupons at TRU, along with the BOGO coupon, to get a Battle Droid (and Vos) today. However, I had not read your comments thoroughly before doing so. This is probably the best Battle Droid so far, though it still misses the mark. The inability to hold the gun in two hands is a major flaw, but the lack of any way to connect the gun to the backpack is inexcusable. Unless I'm totally missing something, every previous BD figure with this backpack has been able to do that. This isn't some ridiculous action feature Hasbro concocted in 1999; it's clearly visible in one of the most memorable scenes of Episode I.
I want a perfect Battle Droid already. Although I'm every bit as sick of BD figures as I am of Clonetroopers or Stormtroopers, at least those two have been more or less perfected already. Every new take on the Battle Droid makes some improvements, but also takes a step back in other aspects. I love Battle Droids, and I consider them to be the equivalent of Stormtroopers in the PT even more than the Clonetroopers (who are "good guys" for most of their time onscreen, and look like Stormtroopers with color stripes when they do go bad), and it bums me out that, every time I hope they've nailed it, there's something still lacking.
Sometimes I wonder if Hasbro really does try to keep the latest resculpts of the most often redone figures from being absolutely right so that they have an excuse to take another shot at them in a couple of years and get more money. Because the guys that can so completely nail background characters in one take shouldn't be releasing dozens of versions of major characters that just slightly miss the mark (and almost always in ways that earlier versions got right).
Picked up all by Qui-Gon, Obi-Wan, and the Battle Droid earlier today. One of my local TRU's had the entire display up. Looked like they only put out two cases of the vintage figs, as there was an extra Battle Droid in addition to the one I left, and one each of the nine I got. This takes the pressure off me on Monday, so I can just worry about the WM exclusives.
Hey folks. Long time no post.
Today at Wm I picked up maul, naboo guard, amidala, and the neimodian dude.
Hi JetsAndHeels. How have you been, dude?
I've missed you around here. You're a nice guy and our Smallville discussions were kind of fun.
Hey tycho!! I am doing good. I hope you are.
Originally Posted by Tycho
Yeah I enjoyed our smallville talks. Too bad it's over.
On topic, I didn't know tvc battle Droid could fold up. That's way cool.
My shipment arrived today, which is great 'cos I haven't seen ANY TPM figures put out on the pegs at any of the stores in my area since i found that partial wave three or four weeks ago.
TRU and WM here put everything out on Monday and are pretty picked clean right now. I haven't been to Target, but they had put them out early. I'm glad to see most stuff selling through. Looks like Qui Gon and Obi wan are the stragglers (not surprisingly). I was pleased that TRU hadn't raised their prices beyond 9.99 and WM is still 8.96. TRU also had a case or 2 worth of the wave that had the utapau clone trooper in it (the one with the head that goes green in the package.) Those will probably hold the pegs up for some time.
I got my astromech set from WM.com yesterday and love it. The paint looks fantastic and I think this is the first clean R2-D2 I've gotten in a while. They're all based on the BAD mold so I may buy a second set to make some franken-droids.