Released September 2003
Reviewed by Adam Pawlus
Photography by Michael Sullenger
Reviewed on October 24, 2003
Every now and again Hasbro makes a toy out of a less than exciting vehicle design. The Geonosian Fighter looks boring, but actually seems to be pretty nicely designed.
The set includes one vehicle, one completely new pilot figure, and three projectiles.
The Geonosian Fighter is not a highly-requested vehicle like, oh, say anything from the Republic Army seems to be. But it is a nice toy in its own right.
The sculpting on the toy is right what it should be. It's clean, the mechanisms are all integrated into the ship nicely, and everything here just looks exactly like it should. This is the good news. The bad news comes from implementation.
The pointy parts of the fighter's nose-- both the top and the bottom-- are made of a very flexible plastic, the same kind we've learned to hate on Hasbro's PowerFX X-Wing Fighter (1998) and the Dagobah X-Wing Fighter (2002.) While this was presumably to avoid breakage, I've never had an issue with the vintage X-Wing's wings sagging or breaking off, and I've seen a lot of saggy PowerFX X-Wings in my time. As such, take note-- either store this on its side, or be prepared to buy something to prop it up. Even if it seems today, I seriously doubt that it will look as good in six months.
As far as paint goes, it looks good. Nothing stands out as garish, ugly, or otherwise wrong. It's a little clean, but that's not a bad thing. I can always dirty a toy up, but cleaning off the paint stains added by the toy manufacturer isn't easy or usually possible. So, good job here, Hasbro.
One serious problem I have with this toy is its canopy. You've got to squeeze the pilot in here, which will eventually result in misshapen legs and/or arms. He does fit, thankfully, just not very well.
The rockets seem to be traditional Hasbro rockets... they fire a good short distance, but aren't remarkable. The ones that are hidden in the sides seem to go a lot farther than the one in the middle, and for the most part don't do much to clutter up the ship's design. For the most part, it works, and it works well.
Every now and again, Hasbro manages to surprise and delight. This is one of those times.
It's new... really new. There's a ball joint at the neck, and at the waist. I'll repeat that. Hasbro put a ball joint in the waist. You can't even tell by looking at it, this new joint allows for tons of movement that we should all get together and pray that Hasbro decides to include it on new figures of the Jedi or Sith persuasion.
The sculpt is OK, it's obviously a little unexciting as it's another Geonosian, but the detail work is superb and there's nothing that can be said about making it better. Hasbro nailed it with a good paint job and joints at the shoudlers, hips, neck, and waist. While this would ordinarilly be unremarkable, the ball joints make all the difference. This is a good figure, folks, and you should be so lucky that Hasbro decided to try something new with an otherwise bland character design.
The set includes three projectiles.
Typical for Clone Wars, the packaging is very distinctive and follows the template set forth by previous vehicles in this series. However, while the Jedi Starfighter and the Federation Tank came in a thick cardboard packaging, this assortment seems to be made from the same cardstock as an action figure cardback.
And for kicks, here's the manual and stickers.
Common. If you can't find this online, at a Target, or at a Toys "R" Us you're obviously not trying.
This is a small vehicle that comes with a good figure. It's also a vehicle design that, prior to playing with the toy, I didn't much care for. Is it worth $20, you ask? Right now, it's hard to say. Were this a $15 toy, I'd advise everybody run out and get it, because as a toy it's neat enough to justify that price point. It's also neater than the Screen Scenes sets that have a similar price tag.
The main issues collectors will have with this is longevity, which seems to be more and more an element not considered by toymakers. I want something that will last. This piece requires maintenence before even putting it on my shelves for the ages... and the figure isn't going to hold up over time, either, if I leave it in the ship. As such, I'm a little glad this toy might be cleared out come Christmas... I'd want a pilot I can just leave inside, and another that I'd have standing.
All things considered, you can do far worse. For a new mold with a new figure, it's a nice toy. Just not a nice, exciting toy. It's on the same level as the Cloud Car in that respect, but at least this one has hidden weapons and stuff.
Our sample was obtained from Entertainment Earth in September 2003.