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Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

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Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby Staff » Tue Feb 25, 2014 6:40 am

75034 - Full Set

When the first leaks showed up with pictures of a proper Death Star Gunner, I think the general reaction for fans was "It's about time!" I mean, we've had two Death Stars, including the huge Death Star Playset that included a big 'ole gun like this set seems to be based on. There are also a couple of Royal Guards, which get a nice "New" label on the box thanks to different arms and capes. It's notable that there isn't an Emperor for them to guard, and there isn't an Emperor coming out in any of the sets this year, so I guess they're guarding the gun?

I've always maintained that Battle Packs are hard to rate, but this year, there are three varieties to go with the two from last year, Republic Troopers vs. Sith Troopers and Clone Troopers vs. Droidekas, giving us five battle packs currently. This one, however, is the only OT set we have to choose from, and the only OT set in the early-2014 wave that isn't a Microfighter. The summer sets are packed with OT stuff, so the dark days are almost over, but will this set tide everyone over with these four figures, a couple of new blasters, and the 100 pieces?



75034 - Minifigs

Lego has been guilty of "A New Hat!" type releases before, but these Royal Guards have to be one of the worse abuses of their "New Figure" I've ever seen. I like the new capes and all, but would have much rather seen these guys in a set where they actually make some sense. This could have been a good trooper pack, with a couple of the death star guys, a stormtrooper, and an imperial officer (you know, an actual Death Star pack), but I suppose we work with what they'll sell us. One thing of note is that both of the Death Star Gunners come with the new flick-fire blasters, and plenty of extra 1x1 studs to shoot with them.

75034 - Death Star Troopers

The troopers are nice (and yes, long overdue), sporting the very 70s sci-fi helmets with an Imperial logo, printed torsos, and printed legs. The printed uniforms leave mean hopeful for some updates to the Imperial troopers soon, hopefully in smaller sets, so I can stock up my Death Star even more (which is holding some 70 minifigs last time I looked). In short, I could always use more officers and troops to make it look right. That and my dream of doing a big Emperor's Arrival MOC has not died yet, even if I never got around to getting a UCS Shuttle...

75034 - Death Star Troopers Helmets Off

They're actually not identical, but very similar, with one sporting an open mouth (you can't see) and the other with a closed mouth (which you also can't see). I neglected to take a picture of the open-mouth because I honestly didn't even notice it until well after I put it together. Overall, he's a good little addition, and the helmet is pretty slick, even if it's fairly limited in its use.

75034 - Imperial Guard

The Royal Guards, like I said, are just a slight upgrade. The biggest change is the cloak, which is using the two-color printing that showed up late last year. It's dark red on the inside and red out the outside. I'd like to say I remembered what the cloak really looked like on the old action figure, as the Royal Guard is one of the few Star Wars figs I had as a kid, but as I remember, the most defining feature of these guys was that they wore robes, not cloaks.

A different color inside and dark red arms doesn't really make up for the fact that the cloak just isn't accurate to the look. Lego has experimented with cloth robes before, and I was hopeful that the CMF graduate or the like were going to give us proper fabric robes eventually. That being said, the big issue with these guys is that you really don't need all that many of them in your collection, certainly not at the level that battle packs would leave you.

75034 - Gun Side

The non-figure part of the battle pack is a gun emplacement. It doesn't really show in the pictures, but this is just a thoroughly underwhelming build, even for a battle pack. The piece count is inflated by a lot of technic pins and parts, and you get a couple of little 2x1 curved slopes and the hinges on a 2x1 plate, but there's something about emptying the bags in this set that leaves you underwhelmed.

75034 - Gun

As a gun, I suppose it's okay. The issue is that there's really no place for it to go in a display that I can come up with. It's smaller than the existing gun on the Death Star playset, though it does look better than that one does. It also too small for the platform. That and the gunners were more for the Death Star's main laser more than anything. You could fit it into a big custom build, if you liked, but I think that if you're going to invest in something like that, you're going to build your own guns.

That's the real issue with this set... while the gunners are cool, they're not really enough to justify the set by itself. The Guards are good on the first one you buy, but I'm not sure how many you need in bulk. While the Royal Guards aren't bad, they're not a good fit for this pack. I would have rather seen an Imperial Officer and a Stormtrooper in their place, which would have moved this thing into a much more amazing pack. The parts don't really justify the mix either, since it just feels disappointing when you empty the parts out to build.

What I liked

  • Death Star Gunners

  • Two-color cloaks on the Royal Guards could have some good use elsewhere too

  • Some decent parts on the gun


What I didn't like

  • Royal Guards don't fit with the battle pack theme

  • Parts and gun are just underwhelming

  • Not a lot of value for re-purchase... you'd be better off getting the gunners on the aftermarket unless you really need the Guards too


Verdict: 2 out of 5. I'd rate it much higher with a better figure mix, but as it sits, it just doesn't feel like a set you'd want to buy a lot of. And that's the whole point of a battle pack.

You can order 75034 Death Star Troopers on Amazon.com right now! This, and the rest of the early-2014 Star Wars sets, are scheduled for release on March 1st.

75034 Box Art

Pictures
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby Blue Squadron » Tue Feb 25, 2014 7:46 am

Yep, I'm inclined to agree with all of that!

The subtle upgrade to the Royal Guards is OK but largely unnecessary and they're definitely *not* "army-builder" material. The Death Star Gunners, however, are indeed very well done -- and long overdue. Pefect for using with 10188.

It still annoys me that Lego could call this set "Death Star Troopers" and yet manage to NOT include an actual Death Star Trooper, especially given that they now have the body print and the correct helmet for this...!! I know I've said it before in here, but the trooper minifig from the 9492 TIE-Fighter really should have been a shoo-in for this set, and much more appropriate than the Royal Guards.

On the other hand, I can fully understand that Lego wouldn't want to market a battle-pack with four essentially all-black minifigs but surely they could have managed something that included a better mix of figures...?

Ironically, the Imperial Crewman from the yet-to-be-released new Imperial Star Destroyer set would also have been a perfect fit for this set alongside the Gunner, a Trooper and maybe a Stormie (or *one* Royal Guard, if they really *had* to inject some colour). A segment of Death Star wall with a control panel, or maybe something built like one of the Death Star doorways from 10188 would have been nice too.

They know we'll buy these just to get the Gunners though, so what do they care...? :roll:
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby dWhisper » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:09 am

Once they get out more, and it goes to the aftermarket, the gunners will run in the 2-4 dollar range, and it's better to get them there. The TIE fighter trooper would have been good as well, though I'd like to see more generic officers. I have some of them, but most are old grey troops that I converted to fleshy, and I'd like to get some more modern ones.

If this goes on a good sale, I'll get some more to combine with the Death Star Troopers from the TIEs
If the above post didn't offend you, you're probably reading it wrong.
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby rushiosan » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:52 am

Oh, Royal Guards don't have "army-builder" potential? Okay then.
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby dWhisper » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:13 am

The emperor had six guards with him. That's a 3-on-3 game of basketball. There are a few more officers, stormtroopers, and gunners in that army...

Image
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby Blue Squadron » Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:06 pm

Sure, having a few Royal Guards is not a problem but, almost by definition, an "elite" force means that there won't be *that* many of them relative to much, much larger numbers of Stormies, Navy Troopers, pilots or even the generic grey-suited crewmen/technicians. In that sense, it's a shame that the Troopers and the Crewmen are each limited to just one appearance of one mini fig in one set. They'd have been ideal for a mixed set of generic Imperials, which is what this could have been.

Still, it is what it is and I'm glad the finally got around to rectifying the obvious omissions from the Imperial line-up. I'm sure they'll sell. Like dWhisper, I'll keep an eye out for this set on sale to buy another and maybe pick up an extra Gunner or two from BrickLink once the dust has settled and their price levels out.

:D
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby rushiosan » Tue Feb 25, 2014 7:38 pm

Crimson red hands, that awesome hood/helmet, double-sided red cloak. How can you go wrong by having lots of these? Even outside SW universe (if you're not going to make a 6-man army) they have infinite potential. I wouldn't swap these by any other figure.
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby Inzane » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:18 am

rushiosan wrote:Oh, Royal Guards don't have "army-builder" potential? Okay then.

dWhisper wrote:The emperor had six guards with him. That's a 3-on-3 game of basketball. There are a few more officers, stormtroopers, and gunners in that army...


We got 2 royal guards in 7166 or 7264 (take your pick, some might even have both)
We got 2 in 6211.
We got 2 in 10188.

There, boom, done!!
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby dWhisper » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:21 am

Or I've gotten them in all of those sets, and that may have clouded my opinion... ;)
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby darth_fett » Wed Feb 26, 2014 4:28 pm

I gotta say, i disagree with most of the points here. Not having Troopers and only gunners is a fair point. I love the design of the gun, just wish it came with a turntable bottom. I've been hoping for more red cloaks, cheaply so i could customize a cloth trenchcoat for my Vash the Stampede minifig. I love the missile fire option and oddly the new pistols are growing on me. They shoot great, i wish i still had a cat to fire them at. Mochi loved a good broadside barrage from pirate ships. She'd knock the cannonballs right out of the air. I don't mind the upgrades to the Guards and would love to have Kir Kanos and all those BA royal guards.
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Re: Review: 75034 Death Star Troopers

Postby 8055bruins » Sat Mar 15, 2014 5:26 am

One way to solve the problem of how to integrate the cannon from this set into the Death Star set, for playability purposes, not necessarily for display purposes, is to mount it at the very top of the Death Star.

Remove the swivel assembly mounting the gunner chair to the cannon, so that the gunner chair is stationary either pointing toward the weapon or in the direction in which the weapon is aimed. I prefer to mount it toward the cannon and position the head of the gunner in the direction in which the weapon is aimed. Use the swivel assembly to mount the cannon to the top of the Death Star. It is now the only Death Star weapon that has 360 degree maneuverability.
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