Q&A For September 29, 2003


1. Simple question: Why is AOTC Cinema Scene #1 of 2 called "Geonosian War CHAMBER" on the package sides, but #2 of 2 is called "Geonosian War ROOM" ? Bad quality control? Weren't they working on them simultaneously (so the table halves fit together)?

Probably for the same reason that the two Jedi High Council sets are labeled as having come from different films. When working witha template, it's surprisingly easy to get confused, and while there should be a quality assurance department that either catches or explains away these things, there's not. There's just me.

I would chalk this up to simple human error, most likely a result of different deadlines and/or a decision that "room" sounds better than "chamber" after the fact.

2. What's all the hub bub about is Palpatine the Emperor or not? I mean, why are some people saying "is he? isn't he?"

The Flashback Photo on the POTF2 figure was Emperor Palpatine, flashback to Senator Palpatine.

Is there really a discussion about this anymore?

I think I may have touched upon this before, but this confuses me as well. It seems like George Lucas took great effort to make it painstakingly obvious that Emperor Palpatine, Darth Sidious, and Senator/Chancellor Palpatine are all one entity with new pants. One of the interesting things about the Internet is, when it comes to things that seem obvious, I've seen fans take discussions to extents that will amaze you, mainly because they seem to miss one important thing. For example, the fact that Chewbacca is male.

If these three names don't all belong to one person, George will have done a pretty great job pulling the wool over my eyes. Everything I've seen in the prequels and heard about the final film seems to funnel into that one simple solution. Of course, that's not to say it could be wrong. After all, in A New Hope, Luke's dad was a navigator on a spice freighter.

3. Do you have any further details on the Wal-Mart value packs? Is this a one time deal that has already come and gone, or will there be more of these hitting Wal-Mart and/or other outlets?

Right now, the word is that Hasbro offered these to all the major retailers. That means Target, Toys "R" Us, everybody. So far, only Wal-Mart has bit, and all of our information prior to their showing up at Wal-Mart made us believe that another chain would be getting these.

Word on the street is that Wal-Marts in the United States have had their allotments come and go and they have no plans to reorder. It is possible that another store could order a batch, but no such plans have been announced. For those of you who assumed they haven't come to your town yet, it's entirely possible they're gone. Every store that I've heard people see them at has sold out within 24 hours, of not within 2-4 hours.

4. Are any of the figures offered in these two-packs different from what is available elsewhere? Are the clones the same as those available in the Clonetrooper 3-packs?

While we have received a few reports of errors appearing more frequently in the two-packs, like missing paint applications and such, these are not widespread nor are they intentional. For all intents and purposes, the figures are the same everywhere, right down to the badly molded Yoda lightsaber. (If you don't know what I mean, you should go check it out.)

5. Hey. I have a couple questions regarding the giant Millennium Falcon that (I think) came from Toys R Uses several years ago. Was it just an enlarged version of the POTF2 vehicle, or was it an original, more accurate model? Also, and this is kinda specific, do you or anyone you know happen to know how long it is from front to back?

This was based on that sculpt, but is missing all the play features. The same out-of-proportion cockpit remains, and none of the moving parts (like an opening ramp) were left. Also, the plastic that it was made from is reportedly quite brittle and a lot of reports are surfacing of these items cracking with age. I do not have an exact measurement of its length, but reports when the item hit said five feet across.

6. Just picked up the Geonosian fighter and although I like the ship its going to look mighty limp after a few years of sitting on my shelf. I know they used the soft plastic for safety but it really screws up an otherwise nice ship. Any recommendations as to how I might correct the problem?

I had the same problem with the Dagobah and Power FX X-wing Fighters. What I did for storage was prop them on their rears, cones pointing skyward. When displayed on a shelf, I propped up the soon-to-be-limp parts with either a tower of LEGO bricks (as they were handy and the right size) or clear plastic pieces that I found at a craft store. There's no cure for limp plastic, all you can do is identify the problem early, compensate for it, and be glad you corrected it before the damage happened.

7. I was wondering how many ARC Troopers are there exactly I was wondering so I know how many to maybe get because they have tons of value packs here in Connecticut.

If you mean "How many are there in the Star Wars Universe," most sources say that a select number of Clones were personally trained by Jango Fett. I thought a number was given in the issue of Star Wars: Republic #50, when they were introduced, but I don't seem to see it. The most ARC Troopers I see in any given panel seems to be four, so for now, I would say four, but with an asterisk. It's possible more were in stasis, so it's difficult to say. My typical rule of thumb on an army builder, if I have the means, is to buy six. It's a good number, but by no means official. "Only a select number of ARC troopers were bred," says the Star Wars Databank entry, which to me seems like it would be a smaller number. Having not trained cloned supercommandos from birth myself, I don't know what a realistic expectation for Jango to have done would be, but it could very well be only four.

8. Is there a possibility of new playsets like droid factory, kiamono or hoth and endor.

Despite huge fan interest, the market is still too small in a non-movie year for a large playset. As such, Hasbro has no plans for any playsets until 2005 at the earliest, at least none that we know of. It is possible sets will show up eventually, and, of course, we don't know all the planets that will appear in the final film as of yet. (Although I do think I've read Kamino will not be shown.)

A Droid Factory of sorts, I'm sure you know by now, has been released a piece at a time. Parts of the Deluxe Super Battle Droid Builder, Padme (Droid Factory Chase), Deluxe C-3PO, and the Arena Playset connect to form a pretty decent assembly line from the factory sequence. So for now, that's all there is.

9. Is the hoth Luke in the tru hoth set a left over repackaged figure or are they making new ones? The reason I ask is because he has a POTF version lightsaber. If they are recasting them wouldn't it have been easier to use a lightsaber already being created that has the flare near the handle???

Hasbro has yet to update older figures with new weapons for these sets, except in some variant Imperial Forces sets. That one comes with either the new or old versions of the Stormtrooper rifle. As far as I can tell, the Luke is a newly molded figure, but it's based on the old mold. As far as I know, Hasbro has never repackaged leftover figures in sets like these.

10. There used to be some nice acrylic case in which one could store MIB 12" figures. I believe the maker was DefenderCases. I think they went out of business so I can't buy from them anymore. Do you know of a place I can get storage cases for boxed 12" Action Collection and 12" Saga figures?

It seems nobody on the Web offers these much anymore. I did some searching and couldn't find anything that seems to work. With the Collector's Series figure boxes changing shape every few years, it's entirely likely they gave up. If anyone out there knows of a good source, do let us know.


Well, it took way more time than I intended, but my new old toy and other junk site 16bit.com is up and ready for your perusal. Enjoy! Right now it's new news and old archives, with a review of that brand new metal-faced Cobra Commander coming this week. I'm on a roll here.

Caught a "sneak preview" of School of Rock which means that I paid to see a movie a week early as a sort of stealth tactic to get word of mouth out for it before it opens. Well, it worked. The thin premise and the curse of working with children didn't seem to destroy the movie. Jack Black delivers, again, so yeah. Probably worth your scratch.

Anyway, get those questions in for next week. Just email me with your inquiry, and we'll see what we can do.

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