Star Wars Saga Collection: The Battle of Geonosis
Released February 2006
Reviewed by Adam Pawlus
Reviewed on February 26, 2006
While reviewing individual figures was fun, efficient, it was not. So, to give you more review bang for your buck, today we present the entire Battle of Geonosis wave from the recently released Saga Collection. These figures come in new fancy packaging with stands and a bonus holographic PVC figure.
Read on for a reason to go hunting-- or stay home!
Saga 015: Sora Bulq
At first glance, he appears to be a head swap, possibly an older Kit Fisto with a new head-- thankfully, he is not. Better known as a villain from the Clone Wars era of the Republic comic book series from Dark Horse, Mr. Bulq appears here in his Attack of the Clones togs ready to fight the Trade Federation and save the prisoners.
As new characters have been far and few between in 2006, this figure is a breath of fresh air. An alien, a Jedi, and (to some) an Expanded Universe figure all rolled into one, Sora Bulq is a figure that doesn't fail to please. Seemingly a new sculpt from head to toe, this figure has articulation most of the places you'd ask for it-- except he comes up a little short with only a standard waist joint, hips, and ankles without knees or a ball-jointed torso. He does sport ball shoulders and elbows, as well as a head, plus he has normal wrist joints. As such, he hits most of the major marks, but since his arms are posed just so, even with all that articulation it's going to take some work to get both of his hands on a lightsaber and get them looking good.
If you open your toys and/or buy extras, the Expanded Universe junkie in you should enjoy this. Obviously, you can give him two lightsabers, or a red one, or two red ones to make him seem like the second Sith he... never actually was. He also wears Anakin's cloak from the Evolutions pack quite nicely, and if you have these extra pieces, the figure is just a smidgen better. I'm actually crossing my fingers for this figure to make a return appearance as a variation made up to be the character as seen in most of the comics, as long as he comes out alongside other comic characters on my wish list.
As a comic fan, this figure is a strong favorite. As a collector, it's a good alien and the first new member of the Weequay race since 1997, so what's not to like? Unless you've got an aversion to prequel toys, you should consider this a must-buy.
Accessories: Lightsaber. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 12 points.
If you have an old version: ...well, you don't, unless you made a custom one...
If you don't have any version of this figure: ...odds are your custom sucks anyway, so buy this one.
If you only have money for one figure: Put this one near the top of your list. At press time he's only known to be shipping in two more cases, but this may change as the year goes on.
Saga 016: Sun Fac
I love him! I hate him! I love him! I hate him! I love him! I hate him!
With the exception of Poggle the Lesser, most Geonosian action figures have more or less sucked. The first releases weren't exactly true to the movie, the Playskool one was orange, and as a rule, they were spindly, lacked articulation, and felt like if you stood them up wrong, the legs would warp. Sun Fac was apparently designed with the lights on, unlike the others, and as such Hasbro crams a lot of good into what seems like a turkey of a choice.
The main flaw of this figure is going to be what he is-- another Geonosian. Granted, if the basic figure was designed like this, he'd be a lot more popular, as he has a staff, blaster, and ball joints to spare. The paint on his head is a little lacking, and while we appreciate the scar, there's just something off about both his eye and the scarred area where his other eye once was. The coloring, on the whole, seems very odd and is likely correct... which is a mark against the figure because the character on which he was based wasn't exactly high on anyone's wish list. (Seriously, show of hands, who would've put Sun Fac on a top 10 list?)
The figure has ball joints-- ankles, neck, shoulders, elbows-- and regular joints-- hips, waist-- so overall, it's good. The accessories look magnificent. The problems really come from the deco, and the fact Hasbro's illustration of Sun Fac from the movie-- right on the package-- looks really great, while the figure is somewhat muddy in appearance. Of course, Sun Fac is to traditional Geonosian figures what a vintage figure was to most early POTF2 figures, although that may be an understatement. He's one of the best Geonosians so if you like bug aliens, this is a winner.
Accessories: Rifle, staff. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 12 points.
If you have an old version: You might have regular Geonosians, this figure is superior to them in pretty much every way.
If you don't have any version of this figure: You may wish to repaint his head and troop build it.
If you only have money for one figure: Call me a racist, but all these Geonosians look a lot alike-- unless you open and futz with your figures, you can probably skip this one, and if you do, well, this is diorama fodder for most fans. It's a well-designed figure, but not as exciting as the rest of this series.
Saga 017: C-3PO with Battle Droid head
Variation hunters, beware! In my case, I saw both variants of this figure up front. Version 1 has the figure packaged with the droid head on the body, the gun in his hand, and C-3PO's head off to the side-- and included a Darth Maul (villain) hologram. Version 2 has C-3PO with all C-3PO parts, and all the Droid parts off to the side-- and includes an Obi-Wan Kenobi (hero) hologram. This means there are up to 12 variations of just this one figure, as opposed to the rest of the line's (assumed) six. So if you're someone who needs all versions of all things C-3PO, this is going to set you back about $84, give or take.
Have you seen this figure before? Probably. In 2002, Hasbro had a marvelous little piece of the "droid factory" chain as "C-3PO with Droid Factory Assembly Line!" It was $9.99, clearanced as low as $1 or $2, and included all the parts to make a full Battle Droid, a full C-3PO, and had a mini playset in the packaging too. This new version, for $6.99, is a modified version of this toy, minus the "playset" pieces and without the Battle Droid body.
For those who are new here, this figure can swap heads, and has a little hole in the back for a backpack. It's meant to replicate the scene from the movie-- which is either groan-worthy or some seriously funny crap depending on which age group you fall in-- and did so very well. The original 2002 release had a claw that could "rip out" heads and switch them using the power of magnets and proper set-up.
Aside from some minor deco changes, these figures are pretty much the same as you've seen before. The 2002 release had magnets in both heads, this one doesn't. As such, for people who don't like metal dots in heads, this could be a very good upgrade as aesthetically, it's cleaner. It's a good figure and will no doubt please kids and new collectors, but if you were keeping up in 2002, this won't do much for you beyond the numerous packaging variations.
Accessories: Blaster pistol, backpack, 2 heads. Personalized display base (just says "C-3PO".)
Articulation: 6 points.
If you have an old version: This is a basically a lateral move-- some improvements, but some new drawbacks.
If you don't have any version of this figure: The old one can be had on eBay and gives more bang for less buck.
If you only have money for one figure: Put this at the bottom of your list unless you're in need of the definitive AOTC C-3PO.
Saga 018: Poggle the Lesser
Arguably the best name in the prequels, this bug alien has a bug beard, a cane made of the leg of a former enemy, and bling out the yin-yang.
This figure was originally released in 2004 as part of the Saga Screen Scene line. As such, if you have that, you have this sculpt-- the painting is a little different, though, and that's what makes this figure special. That, and it doesn't come in a $20 set. Unfortunately, he can't stand on his base properly-- if you put the peg in the hole, he stands at some weird angle best described as sumo-esque. He can stand fine on his lonesome, but if he has a personalized display stand, then dadgummit, he's going to use it!
We don't have a lot to say here beyond it was great then, and it's great now. He's a good looking alien figure and if you don't already have one, stop being cheap and buy this one now.
Accessories: Cane. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 7 points.
If you have an old version: Slightly more decorative than the previous release.
If you don't have any version of this figure: Get this one, unless you want the entire Screen Scene collection.
If you only have money for one figure: This is near the middle of the list-- he's not a speedy seller in our parts, but he is cool and probably won't ship long.
Saga 019: Yoda
If you've bought every Yoda to date, aside from his display base, you have this one.
For new fans: it's Yoda! Yay! Buy Yoda.
For anyone who has been here for more than a week: the action figure is from 2005's Revenge of the Sith collection where he was sold with a giant Wookiee spring-loaded projectile launcher. (ROTS #3 if you're keeping score.) The deco of the figure is the same and it seems as if the same lightsaber is included here. So they took out the launcher, but gave Yoda a cane (ROTS #26, Saga #0315) and some Sith lightning from the duel with Count Dooku (Saga #0223) which was designed specifically for that older Yoda. His hands were sculpted to hold it and he included an accessory that could be held by it. Here, it's just confusing and unnecessary, giving Yoda far more accessories than he needs.
As an added unfortunate bonus, his feet holes are too shallow to use the stand properly. (His foot hovers a bit.) This is an awkward figure with a removable cloak that prevents a lot of poses and just looks odd... but, it does work in the context of the final duel with Emperor Palpatine, and this figure will again be packaged later this year in such a set for Target as an exclusive. (It also has two Shock Troopers and a Senate Pod. $20 well spent?)
Accessories: Lightsaber, cane, lightning. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 10 points.
If you have an old version: Depending on how many you have, you can probably get all these parts and put this figure together yourself.
If you don't have any version of this figure: He's a good prequel Yoda in some senses, but looks a little awkward-- do some research before buying just one if you're planning to limit yourself.
If you only have money for one figure: Scorch.
Saga 020: Jango Fett
Quite possibly one of the most repackaged figures, 2002's Jango Fett (Kamino Escape: #0213; #0320, Hall of Fame) returns here with a newly added display base and slightly altered deco.
While not obvious, this figure has slightly more silvery armor than previous releases, and the new version's rocket pack has much less black soot/dirt on it. Aside from that, it's the old release with a bonus base.
The figure is a good one, though-- with a rocket firing backpack, a removable helmet, and twin blasters that fit snuggly into his holsters, you're going to be hard pressed to find a better overall action figure than this one. The only thing this figure is lacking is greater articulation, and a way to remove that confounded capture claw accessory.
Accessories: Blasters, firing rocket, non-firing rocket, rocketpack, helmet. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 8 points.
If you have an old version: This one has a stand and slightly better deco, but is not significantly different even side-by-side with older releases.
If you don't have any version of this figure: This is the one you want-- it has the best stand (or in the case of the 2002 one, a stand.)
If you only have money for one figure: Jango fans, this may be it for a while, so keep that in mind. If you have a Jango, though, Scorch.
Saga 021: Scorch
Behold! The first Star Wars figure specifically from an Xbox game. The first video game action figure since 1998. The first real new Expanded Universe character since... well, it's been a while!
When it comes to Clones Hasbro can do no wrong, and, fully aware of this, they're doing a lot of experimenting. For starters, there were several concept-based Clones in 2005, as well as some original designs... all of which sold out quickly. Inspired, Hasbro goes back to the past for inspiration, drawing from the fairly popular Republic Commando game to make an all-new sculpt of Clone Trooper and offers it to you, the salivating dogs, for purchase. We're drooling too.
The figure's articulation has been a topic of many a debate, as he's more or less perfect. A little "less," though, as he has ball joints at the neck, elbows, and waist, with standard articulation at the wrists, shoulders, and hips. So he's good, but not perfect. In my case, my sample has a super-loose waist joint, and he tends to flop around quite a bit, leading to disappointment but isolated (likely) only to mine. As a newly sculpted trooper figure, this gets our gears going. You'll probably want one even if you're not "collecting them all" anymore, as he looks great.
Accessories: Backpack, weapon. Personalized display base (reads "Republic Commando Scorch.")
Articulation: 10 points.
If you have an old version: ...you don't, buy this one.
If you don't have any version of this figure: See above.
If you only have money for one figure: Seriously dude, stop sitting and go find one.
Saga 026: Clone Trooper (base reads "Utapau Clone Trooper")
Who likes repaints?
Based on the ROTS #41 Clone Trooper mold from 2005, this figure aims to please. He's the same exact figure, but with new paint. The orange is very bright, the damage markings are wonderful, and we can't help but see ourselves buying a half dozen of these given a chance. It's a shame Hasbro can't just sell solid packed cases of these to an online store who would have interested clients. (Cough, cough.)
With the upcoming Commander Cody, this is a figure you're going to want. At least a couple of it, anyway. It's really cool, super-poseable, and it looks fantastic. Of course, if you're blind to the appeal of some repaints, this is a figure you can safely miss as it offers nothing that the aforementioned release didn't beyond a stand.
Accessories: Removable antenna, rifle. Personalized display base.
Articulation: 14 points.
If you have an old version: Now it comes in delicious orange.
If you don't have any version of this figure: How many can you find? Buy them.
If you only have money for one figure: This should go at the top of a short list.
These figures started arriving in February, 2006. At press time, it does not appear there are plans to ship Sun Fac again until... well, ever. He's not scheduled in any currently known case up to Wave 5 Revision 1. As such, he might be the one you should buy first even though he isn't Scorch or Sora Bulq.
8 figures. 3 new sculpts. 1 repaint into a new character, and 4 figures "refreshed" with new accessories and paint. Can you dig it?
We've been seeing everybody but the Clones in our travels outside California, but only the two Geonosians and Yoda within CA. As such, your mileage may vary, but these are all pretty good figures. If you're new to the hobby, we still hold fast to the belief that you should pick up the entire Saga Collection, and then flesh it out with the figures in the Original Trilogy Collection you don't yet have. (And then you should buy some exclusive Astromech action figures because I'm a shill.)
Our review samples were obtained from Entertainment Earth on February 23, 2006.