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Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

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Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Staff » Fri Nov 25, 2011 4:24 pm

7965 Millennium Falcon Review

Why is it so hard to successfully make one of the most iconic ships from this franchise? Is it merely because it's so iconic? All I know is after as many times as they've redesigned this I would expect them to at least make something worth settling for.



I was tasked with reviewing this model because I had not built any of the previous versions, so in theory I could treat it with a fresh start and as little existing bias as possible. I don't think that helped much though, because I am completely not impressed. The more I look at this the more I dislike it. We'll start off with what I did like though because it's all downhill from there.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior
I will say that, accuracy aside, and primarily as a play-set, it's honestly not that bad. The layout of the Falcon varies significantly depending on what source you look at so they didn't have to nail one floor plan to stave off my ire. The interior is still notably sparse, but it does include a fair hand full of separate plainly recognizable features with varying degrees of functionality. Of course the holo-chess board is included, but with the droids strangely missing from the minifig lineup you can't quite recreate that scene from the movie.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior


I'm sure Han knows how to play though so Chewy isn't too upset. The engineering station (full of printed control panels) is very nice, and one bit I don't remember seeing in previous iterations (although I could be wrong here). Likewise, the upward and downward facing gunner stations in the center well was a nice touch.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations


There are a pair of bunks are tucked away back by the hyperdrive generators, there's a hidden stowaway compartment and (fairly useless) boarding ramp where it should be, and plenty of room to have Luke's 30 seconds of formal lightsaber training.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior


I'd like to highlight an observation on the training remote here for a second, and ask why in the world would they use that as a stand and not a transparent antenna? It's supposed to hover, and that big goofy thing is a poor solution. The petal like panels open and close easily too, and don't look bad doing it.



Also, it's surprisingly swooshable considering it's bulk. I guess you could say She may not look like much, but she's got it where it counts. The two horizontal sections across the center are very sturdy grip points and the underside is easy to hang on to to fly it around. Inverting is a bit troublesome because some of the panels on top will flip open and if the tools are stored per the instructions they'll get tossed around or dumped out, and the satellite dish & quad canons like to spin at will. Otherwise, swoosh away.

The six minifigures included are a bit underwhelming. Han contains no new elements, just a new combination of existing parts (first time the peachy head and torso has been paired with his dark blue pants at least). Chewy is the same Chewy you'll get in any other set.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Han7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Chewy


This Darth Vader came in the UCS Shuttle set and the ISD already, but it's my first time getting one with the red highlights in his face scars so I'm not complaining.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Vader 1
His inclusion bothers me slightly because he never set foot on the Falcon, whereas R2D2 and C3PO are not included as I mentioned earlier. Such a strange and mildly aggravating decision there. I suppose he was included specifically to face off against Obi-Wan.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Vader 27965 Millennium Falcon Review: Obi Wan


The same Obi-Wan that came in the Landspeeder set, just with a hood and cape instead of grey hair now. Luke too features the same torso and legs as he did in the Landspeeder set, but now he has his signature mussed up hair he gained in the Echo Base set's Bacta tank, and a new reversible head too.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Luke


Side one featuring a stern look of determination, the other has printing to represent the blast shield for the accompanying training helmet (as well as what appears to be a giant 70's style mustache, must be from a gag reel I don't know about). Lastly is Leia, sporting the same white dress design on the torso as seen in every other ANH based Falcon set, still with pants despite that getup being a dress, but now she gets a double sided head like her brother.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Leia


Side one seems to match perfectly to the Echo Base face, the opposite side in similar style but with a very unpleasant frown. There's just something about this style that looks wrong to me. I think it's the giant creepy lips. I prefer the older and distinctly simpler look she used to sport on every fig.
Now it's time to talk about the ship itself, so brace yourselves. First off, and blatantly obvious, the size is way off for the minifigs. But really that's to be expected with a ship in this price range, if you want something truer to scale get the UCS version. So that's not a fair complaint. I'm just stating the obvious here. The real problem here is that it wasn't just scaled down, the proportions are wrong and the shape of the front half is significantly off no matter how you look at it (assuming of course you're as obsessive about this sort of thing as I seem to be).

7965 Millennium Falcon Review


The biggest offense is the cockpit. It's massive in relation to the rest of the ship and yet it still only fits two figures. I understand this is a difficult section but they made a lot of compromises that they shouldn't have. It does not extend beyond the edge of the circular portion, and instead it's smashed inward and forward. The raised section to simulate the angled connecting corridor does not line up properly and is even farther forward. The printed cone section and 4x4 dish at least do a decent job to pull off the look of the canopy, but the slope is all wrong and it isn't positioned correctly in relation to the right mandible.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit


And like I said, despite it's size only two minifigs can fit inside the cockpit, staggered, with arms overlapping and no seats or real effort put into the control panel.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit


The whole forward cockpit section is built separately from the ship itself, and can still cleanly detach once completed. I can only assume they sacrificed the corridor that should connect the cockpit to the rest of the interior for easier construction, and it ends up looking like it should function as an escape pod. Given the escape pod in the original Falcon set I would actually have counted this as an improvement if they slapped some thrusters on the back. They had room to with minor reworking of the socket.

Now the mandibles are the other glaring inaccuracy that I take issue with. Simply put: they're puny.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: mandibles7965 Millennium Falcon Review: mandibles


Maybe this was to make up part wise for the over-sized cockpit, and if so it was a bad choice. As the two sections are so close to each other the incongruity is all the more obvious. On the real ship the outer leading edges come nearly tangent to the round section of the ship. On this model they stop short, and the result is an awkward inset angle where it should almost be one continuous line. They appear longer than they should in part because of that missing area along the edge plus the forward freight bay between them being set too far back. The overall size issue means the four round access ports, which are again frustratingly represented as raised tiles, are also smaller than they ought to be (in reality they're the same size as the six vents on the back over the engines).

Those six rear vents, while actually raised on the real Falcon, suffer on this model due to poor integration.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: floating vents


It's hard for them not to look like disks mounted on pegs above the surface of the ship, because that's exactly what they are. Even just a 1x2 black tile under them to fill out the gaps a bit would have helped. Speaking of gaps, they're everywhere. And they're huge.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gaps galore


When you finish building a ship, and you can slip a minifigure between the seams of the hull, you're not really finished. I don't expect a completely sealed surface but I can't help but feel like someone dropped the ball there. On a similar note, here's something that caught my attention in the instructions and really drives me nuts:

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: instruction error


THIS IS NOT POSSIBLE. This shows elements overlapping - physically existing in the same space. On the set you can choose to push those panels on either side outward a 1/16th of an inch or simply rest the panels on top of each other, but that problem should never have made it to production. It's not a fluke in the printing on one page, the rest of the instructions show this error over and over from multiple angles.
Taking a looking from the back, the transparent blue tube for the engine and the surrounding groove is pretty well done, but you can catch a glimpse of the support beams below and any points for good design are quickly retracted.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review


Flip it over and you can see just how unfinished everything feels.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review: underside


This has never been Lego's strong point in official sets so I'm sort of used to it now. The landing struts are fixed for stability and only slightly dressed up. The lower quad canon turret has the same full range of motion as on the top, but there's no access to the gunner's well. The boarding ramp is functional to an extent, but once flipped back the right way there isn't enough clearance to make use of it at all. Two twin flick fire missile pods are tacked on the front for those who like them, and are easily removed for those who don't.

7965 Millennium Falcon Review

As a parts pack it's not too bad. You get a lot of elements that I feel are useful for building your own ships even though it's predominately gray. $139.99 for 1238 parts is I think on the low end for Star Wars sets, and I'm sure you can find a deal better than retail by now.

What I liked: There's a decent play-set stuffed in there, and it's fun to swoosh such a large ship around.

What I didn't like: Pretty much everything else. Lackluster minifig selection, a plethora of accuracy issues, impossible glitch in the instructions, gaps-aplenty, and the ramp is a joke.

Verdict: If you're a kid you're probably a lot less critical than me, so most of the problems I've gone on about won't matter to you. If I could switch of my nit-picky nerd rage circuit I would be happy to get this for Christmas too. But as a Star Wars fan and collector, this is a poor representation of a classic ship that falls way short of what it should be.

Full image set:
7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review


7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review


7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review: flick fire missiles removed7965 Millennium Falcon Review: underside7965 Millennium Falcon Review: underside7965 Millennium Falcon Review: floating vents7965 Millennium Falcon Review: instruction error7965 Millennium Falcon Review: poor fitv17965 Millennium Falcon Review: poor fit


7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Chewy7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Han7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Leia7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Luke7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Training Remote7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Obi Wan7965 Millennium Falcon Review: Vader 27965 Millennium Falcon Review: Vader 1


7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit7965 Millennium Falcon Review: cockpit7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gunner stations


7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior


7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: interior7965 Millennium Falcon Review: mandibles7965 Millennium Falcon Review: mandibles7965 Millennium Falcon Review: panel animation7965 Millennium Falcon Review: swooshability


7965 Millennium Falcon Review: gaps galore7965 Millennium Falcon Review7965 Millennium Falcon Review: useless ramp7965 Millennium Falcon Review: additional accessories


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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Nannan » Fri Nov 25, 2011 4:52 pm

Even though I own the set but didn't build it, I can say that the parts selection isn't exciting at all. Definitely not worth the full price. I admire your patience to take many great shots for this rather undeserving set.
Image
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby fallenangel327 » Fri Nov 25, 2011 6:24 pm

I'd like to make a quick point regarding the mandibles. Eurobricks moderator KielDaMan reviewed this same set a few weeks ago, and he provided a side-by-side comparison of this set with the studio model:

Image

I can't help but feel that there exists a misconception on FBTB of how big the Falcon's mandibles actually are. On the one hand, yes, they are too narrow on this set as a result of the odd cockpit placement, but they are also too long rather than too short. Granted, this shot doesn't illustrate my primary complaint with this set (its fatness), but that's another story.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby twentythree » Fri Nov 25, 2011 6:51 pm

Target has it on sale for $114.99 and it qualifies for free shipping.

http://www.target.com/p/LEGO-Star-Wars-Millennium-Falcon-7965/-/A-13391174


Thanks for the review. I was contemplating buying it as a Christmas present for my son. He is only 12 but would definitely be at least as 'nit picky' as you claim to be. The new Dino sets will easily be a better choice for him.
"I aim to misbehave" - Malcolm Reynolds
"What I told you was true...from a certain point of view" - Obi Wan Kenobi
"A lion, a witch, and a wardrobe walk into a bar...stop me if you've heard this one" - me
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Solo » Fri Nov 25, 2011 7:28 pm

fallenangel327: Thanks for posting that. My complaint is the overall size of them, not a single linear dimension. I even said they appear longer than they should be so there are no misconceptions over here. Seeing as they are in fact too long further exacerbates the width and thickness issues. As you admitted and is painfully apparent in comparison, the width of them is much too narrow to achieve the proper angle to blend them into the hull. What you refer to as "the fatness" I'm assuming is the vertical height of the body, which too is out of proportion, but because of this the mandibles should be more than a mere two bricks thick as well. The end result is disappointing regardless of how you describe it.

Also, allow me to illustrate my complaints about the horrible proportions with the help of your image:
Image
If you were to measure from the corner of the mandible to the point where it meets the body, it looks like the lengths of the leading outer edge match up fairly well. The real problem is the angle on the set being too steep. That accounts for the elongated look of them. The cockpit seems like it simply followed that meeting point forward and then was scaled up to accommodate Han and Chewy.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby 50missioncap » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:54 pm

This review is terrible. One of the best sets I built this year... dude with the 12 year old... he will love this set. You are listening to a comic book store guy complain about inaccuracies based on the movie. C'mon son, your review came off completely nerd-affected and contrived... go out on a date with a girl bro.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Solo » Fri Nov 25, 2011 10:03 pm

So, did you miss the parts in the review where I mentioned basically that, or are you actively ignoring them?

Spoiler: show
Worst. Feedback. Ever. Image
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby dWhisper » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:43 pm

50missioncap wrote:C'mon son, your review came off completely nerd-affected and contrived... go out on a date with a girl bro.


I wonder at the jump in logic here. Do you assume that the staff is all a bunch of teenage kids, afraid of talking to girls and waiting for that first date? (You know, instead of being in our 20s or 30s, often married and sometimes with kids of our own).
If the above post didn't offend you, you're probably reading it wrong.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby onions » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:46 pm

when it comes to 12 years olds, i doubt many of them will be able to give a critical review of the falcon. that's what we are here for. if you want a 12 year old's pov, here it is:

omigosh it's awesome!
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby dWhisper » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:50 pm

No, that's still too coherent for the normal 12-year-old, text message and hormone induced review.

omg that si awsme!!!1! lol!

(any resemblance to actual 12-year-old speech is incidental. Celebrity voices impersonated. If you are a 12-year-old and offended by this joke... yeah, well, tough; one of the few perks of getting old is looking down on those younger than you. Wait a couple of decades and you'll understand)
If the above post didn't offend you, you're probably reading it wrong.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Solo » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:59 pm

Oh come on. I thought the comment was funny. If it offended me I could have just not approved it.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby dWhisper » Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:09 am

Awww. stop trying to take our fun! It's not like we have dates with girls lined up or something to distract us!
If the above post didn't offend you, you're probably reading it wrong.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Trooper10 » Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:15 am

Lols at you 2 guys (very funny last few posts) :)

I appreciate the review as I've been procrastinating about this set (I own the previous two versions) and couldn't really justify getting this one. After seeing those pics the set is resigned to the "buy for a stash of pieces if it's really cheap" column of my wishlist....(we all keep a cross-referenced database for our wishlist, sets owned and sets/minifigs "I can't believe they haven't done yet" right, Right?)...anyhoo, I want these kinds of reviews which are critical and descriptive of the sets as a) fun to build or not, b) good or bad for parts/minifigs, and c) bearing any resemblance to the source material. And there are plenty of caveats throughout. Keep up the great work, I say.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Andi » Sat Nov 26, 2011 5:41 am

Thanks for this review, Don.
I thought about getting it in addition to my 4504 Falcon, but as you say, it lacks too much in any way.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby fallenangel327 » Sat Nov 26, 2011 10:36 am

50missioncap wrote:This review is terrible. One of the best sets I built this year... dude with the 12 year old... he will love this set. You are listening to a comic book store guy complain about inaccuracies based on the movie. C'mon son, your review came off completely nerd-affected and contrived... go out on a date with a girl bro.


Excuse me? I haven't even set foot into a comic book store since around 2008. I admit that I have shown myself to be more conscious of set accuracy relative to most people on this forum, but that does not mean I am some 'comic book store guy' with no life. I take offense to this statement.

I actually think most of the staff reviews on this site are done quite well, offering a fair look at the various pros and cons of the set. They're usually nowhere near as 'nerd-affected and contrived' as you claim this one is, and even in this case, one can't help but excuse that with the Falcon being one of the most famous sci-fi ships in film history.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Boyfromvalley » Sat Nov 26, 2011 1:24 pm

I acquired this last week and with the exception of the mid-scale model, is the first Millennium Falcon I've ever bought. So would anyone say this was still worth buying if you don't already own one, and is £90 still a good deal despite its faults?
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Novastinger » Sat Nov 26, 2011 6:59 pm

Tough critic, I really enjoyed this set, although I generally like every large Star Wars ship (even if both this year were rehashes). IMO, this is definitely the best 2011 Star Wars set over $80 (outside of the $399 Super Star Destroyer set 10221 which I don't own yet, so can't comment on). Also, I tend to be biased towards minifigure scale sets over accuracy-focused sets like most the UCS line.

All that said though, we really deserve a totally new large Star Wars ship for 2012 (not a rehash). Very nice pictures and writing in the review too, just a tad harsh on a great set IMO.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby dman7529 » Mon Nov 28, 2011 7:14 am

Love the review, and it is accurate.

Having come out of DA kind of late (Jabba's sail barge), i missed getting the 7190 and 4504 sets, and was not interested in purchasing them on the after market either. So when I heard this was coming out, I was happy, as it gives me 3 of 4 scales: MIDI, system, and UCS.

Like most, there are some major inaccuracies and problems that keep this from being a great overall set. Thats why I bought 2, one to just put together, and the other, to try and fix the biggest problems for me: poor underside and the cockpit/mandibles.

Keep up the nerd-rage reviews :)
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby MrCRskater » Mon Nov 28, 2011 11:29 am

Great review, Don. You offer some interesting perspectives on aspects of the model that many of us aren't fond of. . . basically, I'm saying you mirrored my sentiments, but your review was still an interesting read and got me thinking of ways I could try and improve the model. Those mandibles look sillier and sillier every time I look at them, and the cockpit is all out of place but may be an easy fix. . .

Maybe this would be a good candidate for an "alternate" model contest. With all the recent sales, it seems many folks around here picked this up, and many who didn't decided not to because they have older versions. Perhaps there could be a contest to see who could scrape together the best-looking system-scale Falcon by modding an official set release, with a separate category each for 7190, 4804, and 7965.
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Re: Review: 7965 Millennium Falcon

Postby Flynn » Tue Nov 29, 2011 6:58 am

Anyone know how well you could Flail 7965? Or is it structurally too different to easily apply those modifications?
joecrowaz on Flickr wrote:Flynn you little wussy with a purple robed fairy for an icon,


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