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Bandai 1/12 Star Wars Scout Trooper and Speeder Bike


JaseGill
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1/48 Bandai Star Wars Scout Trooper and Speeder Bike.

Bandai Kit Ref: 0196693

Priced Yen 4,000 (about £30 before pnp and customs if they get you).

 

Speeder%20Bike-1.jpg

 

Once again Bandai answers a long standing wish of mine.  Since building the AMT/ERTL kit of the same subject when I was a child I have always wanted to get another kit of this subject and do it some justice.  Well my dreams have been answered and this kit is really a great one from my point of view.

Like all of the other Star Wars Bandai kits reviewed here by myself and Jim these are only available for import from Japan.  I use the well known HLJ for this and every time a new kit comes up I add it to my wish list/warehouse there and just wait for release.  The reason its only import is that the license for Star Wars in Europe is held by Revell whereas its held by Bandai in Japan and I guess the two companies have a non-compete clause across the world with respect to Star Wars.  Personally I think this is a bad move but thats between LucasArts, Disney, Revell and Bandai to work out.  There were rumours that Disney may block shipping Bandai out of Japan and Revell out of Europe, I hope not and so far its still a good (if expensive if the Tax Man gets you) route for these kits. 

 

The Kit.

The box art (above) is really evocative of the Speeder Bike from the Star Wars movie (Return of the Jedi) and shows the Speeder in pursuit of its foes through the forests of Endor.  Its a really nice, shiny and well built box.  Its packed to the full with kit pieces too.  

Effectively this is two kits in one.  One of the Scout Trooper himself.  Personally I think this is the coolest armour of any of the Imperials in Star Wars, maybe the Tie Fighter pilot comes close but this wins it for me, so just for the Trooper I'd have paid a premium, but with the Speeder Bike its just a win win for me.  Given its two kits my review will take two parts, the Scout Trooper and the Bike as two mini reviews.

 

The Scout Trooper.

As all of the previous kits the trooper builds from multi colour multi media pieces, some sprues have more than one colour on them, something that continues to surprise me in a good way.
The Trooper is predominantly gloss white (needs some weathering for a good representation of an Endor Trooper) and black.  His armour being white and the under suit being black.  In this kit there's also some brown in there for the soles of his boots.  A decent touch.  The main parts are contained in the 1st three sprues pictured below whilst there is a fourth sprue that is made of a softer rubber style plastic which is all the joints in the figure.  This allows one to either display the figure standing or in an action pose or he can be placed upon the bike itself.  A nice touch I think.  This also seems to follow other Japanese manufacturers who often allow posing of figures and models, this reminds me of Wave Ma.K kits I've built in the past.

There is a separate base for the Trooper and Ive noticed that all of the bases of the figures so far are the same and are inter-lockable.  I guess Bandai are allowing for figure collectors who'd like to display all their figures together, another nice touch.

Speeder%20Bike-6.jpg

The Main Figure Sprues (above) and the rubber 'joints' (below).

Speeder%20Bike-8.jpg

 

The Speeder Bike.

As mentioned above the Speeder Bike could be considered a kit in itself.  Its very nicely moulded, as all of the other sprues is completely flash free and is again coloured, just like the Scout Trooper.

In the case of the Speeder Bike the plastic is a deep grey and a brown colour.  These match closely the colours of the 'real' thing and so for a more casual modeller they could suffice.  Of course most of us, including me, will paint these but as a means of introducing younger or less experienced modellers to the hobby I think this is a great move.

Again this comes with its own base, this time consisting of a forest floor piece and what looks like the lower half of a tree.  This allows a small, invisible from one side, support to attach to the bike and give a sense of the bike either hovering whilst at rest of flying through the sky with the Scout Trooper posed onboard.

Speeder%20Bike-9.jpg

The Speeder Bike and its components arranged on three multi colour sprues (above).

 

The Decals.

There are decals for both the Trooper and the Bike but there are two options here.  For the less experienced modeller there is a set of self adhesive decals available (on the green backing paper) and for the more experienced a set of slide decals (on the blue backing paper).  Again a great option that allows the less proficient modeller to still build a representative kit.

Speeder%20Bike-13.jpg

The Decals.  Waterslide (left) and Self Adhesive (right).

 

The Instructions.

Being for the Japanese Market the instructions are completely in Japanese other than the odd title here and there.  This shouldn't give too many issues as we can all Im sure work out the colour scheme.  Whats also common with the other Bandai kits is the quality of the instructions, they're great.  Very well presented, illustrated and annotated (though I wish I could read Japanese).  The Colour Callouts on the back page are great and show a weathered bike to give the modeller a few ideas, again a great touch.

Speeder%20Bike-2.jpg

Speeder%20Bike-3.jpg

Speeder%20Bike-4.jpg

Speeder%20Bike-5.jpg

 

The Bases.

As I mentioned above there is a seperate base for the Trooper (black) and one for the bike (brown).  These are a great touch and the interlocking of each to each other or to other ones in the series is a great little feature.

Speeder%20Bike-10.jpg

The Bases for the Speeder Bike (left) and Scout Trooper (right).

 

Conclusion.

Well you probably already guessed, I love this kit and cant wait to get to the build itself.  The Trooper is cool, the bike is cool, two together is super cool so I'll be building these at the soonest opportunity.  The bonus is that for someone who enjoys weathering these two also have endless opportunities for fun.

 

Highly Recommended.

Available from Hobby Link Japan (HLJ.com) and other Japanese Importers.

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This looks so good, and I wish I'd ordered one when they had them in stock.

 

I know from the other figures how well these fit together. I also hope you treat us to a build soon ;)

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Thankyou for this review!

 

I cannot wait for my big box from Japan to arrive - like you I've been adding the Bandai kits to my private warehouse and waiting for release. Ive got the 1/48 Xwing, Snowspeeder and 2 x AT-STs plus this kit coming very soon. I'm patiently waiting for a 1/48 A Wing and/or TIE Interceptor and I'll probably pick up the 1/12 Sand Trooper too....

 

Im hooked!

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This looks so good, and I wish I'd ordered one when they had them in stock.

 

I know from the other figures how well these fit together. I also hope you treat us to a build soon ;)

 

James if you want one I can grab one from the local store!

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