Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Lego Star Wars Set 75078: Imperial Troop Transport Review

The Lego Star Wars set 75078: Imperial Troop Transport is one of the 20 Star Wars Rebels sets released so far. This particular one is part of the initial wave, it went on sale worldwide in January 2015 for £11.99 / $12.99 / 16.99€. It contains 141 parts (quite a lot for a battlepack), bringing the cents-per-piece ratio to 8.5p / 9.2c / 12.0c. Some argue that between 2012 and 2014 battlepacks changed for the worse (by offering minifigures that were unsuited for the amassing of large forces), making a comeback in 2015 and getting better since. I totally agree with these claims. The Imperial Troop Transport has an insane army-building potential and I think it is a very compelling battlepack. Read on to find out why.


Disclaimer note: I have bought this set with my own money from the local store, paying full price. The Lego Group had no entanglements with the way I aquiered this set and is probably unaware of my existence anyhow. The opinions here are therefore my own; they are not reviewed before being posted here by anyone else but myself.

Box, Instructions, Out-of-the-box and building experience

The box art shows the built set and some details (including set number, title, the number of parts, age rating) on the front side and some play features on the back side. It is basically just a standard Lego box, nothing special about it.
I like it how on the front of the box, you have these lasers coming form one direction (the right), but we can clearly see the Transport firing in a totally different direction (to the left).
Front side of the box

Rear side of the box
After opening the box, you are left with 2 parts bags (one containing the larger bricks, the other one the small parts), a 2x12 light blueish grey plate and the normal sized instruction booklet.
The build process is pretty straight forward. You also get some extra parts, most of them are additional ammo for those blasted studshooters.

Minifigures and accessories

Four minifigures are included and I am happy to report that, all four are (almost) identical. Stormtroopers are some of the most popular figures for army building and I am sure that even these versions based on Star Wars Rebels are going to be widespread among army-builders, despite their stylized nature. They closely resemble the ones that appeared in the show which I appreciate, although I am aware that not everyone likes the design as much as I do. Nonetheless, both the helmets and the torsos and legs are very detailed and accurate to the source material.
While it appears that Lego decided to let all Stormtroopers in the newer sets have that "angry" clone Trooper head, it seems that they at least tried to make this set less boring by including 2 types of Stormtrooper heads: a pair of angry-clone and a pair of smiling-clone heads.
All four figures are armed with the stud-firing blasters, a weapon which I am not a fan of in general.
I know that many members of the community are bashing Lego for the lack of variety when it comes to Stormtrooper heads, especially since there were almost no clones left in the Imperial army during the time in which Rebels is set. I don't think that Lego is trying to suggest the opposite here, rather I suspect they meant to simply provide a basic facial expression for these nameless soldiers of the Empire.

The completed model

The models included in the Star Wars battlepacks can either be very nice or not. This Imperial Troop Transport (commonly referred to as an ITT) belongs to the second category, I deem it to be unimpressive. Its most prominent appearance to date has been in the Star Wars Rebels series, where it appears to be a significant asset to Imperial ground forces on Lothal and other locations. So far we have seen it transporting goods and prisoners around and providing support to the Imperial infantry units on Lothal and Ryoth, which it appears to be pretty adept for (as long as the Rebels are not attacking).

This version is not scaled down properly. It is even a lot smaller that the "real deal", which holds six people on the sides and is crewed by two drivers and an officer in the cockpit. I would love to see a nice scale model of the vehicle appear in future, although this little version captures the main features including twin guns at the front, a rotating laser cannon turret on top and side storage compartments.
There is no space for a driver inside but there are some nice features including two flick fire missiles and a storage container for blaster ammunition (trans-red 1x1 round plates). The side panels can be hinged up and down to lock the minifigures AND the container in place too, which is not accurate to the show, but the minifigures look superb standing in position behind these flaps. There are also some holes behind the spots for the minifigures where you can store their blasters while they are positioned there.

Overall

It became clear to me only after I bought the set that it is all about the minifigures and I see many people purchasing a number of these to assemble a modest army of Stormtroopers. I, like many others no doubt, would have preferred a battle pack filled with the standard Stormtrooper minifigures, but I think these Rebels Stormtroopers look great as well, particularly in larger groups.
The Imperial Troop Transport itself feels a bit disappointing to me. While it is easily recognisable if you are familiar with the source material, it lacks the scale and... Uhmm... appeal of the normal model. Compared to that one, it is tiny and flimsy.
I still stand by my opinion, that Lego could have easily included some standard (moulded) blaster rifles as well. Studshooters simply don't look well in dioramas and I think many collectors would agree with me.
All in all, I recommend this set even if you are not a fan of Star Wars Rebels and of the ITT. The minifigures may not be to everybody's taste but there are some useful parts included, many of which are light bluish grey slopes (ideal for Imperial bases and other vehicles... who knows... maybe someone buys more of these and builds a ITT at minifigure-scale, designed after the source material).
I will make my personal goal to swap out any studshooters I get with some real rifles, so here you have a picture of that.

Interested in buying this set? Check it out at the link below:
http://amzn.to/2lbCwXw