The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Wave 10 Figures Found

I was lucky enough to find a small assortment of the Triple Force Friday wave of Vintage Collection figures at my local EB Games. Sadly - and somewhat predictably - the next wave (Wave 10) proved much harder to find. There were three figures from this wave on my hunt list: VC150 Princess Leia Organa (Yavin), VC162 Sith Trooper, and VC163 Shadow Trooper. While I finally managed to find the Sith Trooper at retail, I had to resort to the online secondary market to secure the other two.


As usual with The Vintage Collection, this wave provides us with another excellent trio of Vfigures. Leia is an upgraded of version of the (previously Walmart exclusive) Black Series figure from 2015 - now with improved articulation and that wonderful Photo Real face treatment. The Sith Trooper, on the other hand, is an entirely new figure and represents (only) the sixth 3 3/4" figure we've received from The Rise of Skywalker. Featuring phenomenal articulation and a unique pair of weapons, he'll make a great addition to my First order forces.

Lego 75267 Mandalorian Battle Pack

Let's be honest - everyone loves The Mandalorian. Despite this (or, perhaps, for this very reason) Mandalorian merchandise has been hard to come by. The 6" Black Series Mandalorian and the Hot Wheels Razor Crest are nowhere to be found, and we won't be seeing any 3 3/4" Mandalorian figures until at least April. For that reason, I pounced on the one (also very sought-after) piece of Mandalorian merchandise I've come across - the Lego 75267 Mandalorian Battle Pack.


Retailing at $22.99AU ($23.97NZ), this set comes with four uniquely decorated Mandalorians (two male and two female) from the enclave on Nevarro. The detailing on each is phenomenal, with three of the four even featuring printed leg pieces. Also included are four fabric capes, four rangefinders, and four visors; allowing you to customise each figure according to your own preferences.

Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker Premiere (December 2019)

It feels like The Rise of Skywalker (TRoS) has been a long time coming. But in other ways, it seems like only yesterday that the sequel trilogy began with The Force Awakens. However you do the math, the end of the Skywalker Saga is an historic event: the final chapter in a nine-film saga spanning over forty-two years of film-making. Fortunately, our local cinema went all-out to mark this auspicious occasion - celebrating the midnight premiere with Star Wars-themed cocktails, a costume competition, and a "cantina band" playing all of the tunes we know and love.


Of course, given the enormity of the task faced by TRoS, there was no way this film was ever going to be all things for all people. Fortunately for my wife and I... it was. Sure, it packs an enormous amount into its 2 hour 22 minute runtime - whisking us from one exotic locale to the next at almost breakneck speed. But, for me, it never feels rushed. In fact, my very first comment to my wife upon leaving the cinema was just how satisfying the pacing was. While The Last Jedi is one of my favourite films of the saga, there's no denying that there were moments when the film seemed to drag. Such is never the case in TRoS, and I was astonished at how quickly the near two-and-a-half hour film flew by.

Lego 75136 Droid Escape Pod

Today's post comes on behalf of my wife. A few years back, she missed out on the Lego 75136 Droid Escape Pod set and has been searching for it ever since. After a little hunting, I managed to track one down and surprise her on Christmas Day. She just completed the build, so I thought I'd take the chance to grab a few photos and share our thoughts.


All up, this is one of the nicest Star Wars builds I've seen in a long time. Lego does all it can to keep the prices of these mid-size sets down, but often this means they come out feeling a little light on parts - lacking density and seeming a little fragile as a result. Not so here, however. The construction is tightly packed and sturdy as hell. It feels like this pod really could survive a crash landing.

The Rise of Skywalker Visual Dictionary

As has become tradition, the week following the release of a new Star Wars film means one thing: poring over the details contained of a brand new Visual Dictionary. I managed to pick up my copy of this essential Rise of Skywalker companion via MightyApe for just $25.00AU (NZ).


Those of you familiar with these wonderful tomes will already know what to expect: endless details, trivia, and minutiae from the film - all accompanied by author Pablo Hidalgo's acerbic wit. This entry is no different. Countless threads are drawn between TRoS and what has come before - including more references to the Legends Expanded Universe than ever before.

Hot Wheels Commemorative Series Wave 1 Vehicles

My completionist nature means I'm loath to start collecting entirely new lines of Star Wars collectibles. That's why - despite my obsession with miniature Star Wars vehicles - I've largely avoided delving into the new Hot Wheels starship line. My wife knows my strange collecting idiosyncrasies better than anyone, however, so surprised me this Christmas with the first wave of Hot Wheels Commemorative Series - a limited line that's very satisfyingly capped at only nine vehicles.



The Commemorative Series features one iconic vehicle from each of the films in the Skywalker Saga. This first wave covers episodes I through V, and includes a Naboo Starfighter from The Phantom Menace, a Republic Attack Gunship from Attack of the Clones, Obi-Wan Kenobi's ETA-2 Jedi Starfighter from Revenge of the Sith, Darth Vader's TIE Fighter from A New Hope, and Boba Fett's Slave I from The Empire Strikes Back. Each vehicle is painted in a gorgeous uniform silver, and comes atop a sturdy transparent display stand that bears the symbol of the ship's main affiliation.

Lego 75245 2019 Advent Calendar

After making excuses for many years, I finally decided to splurge on a Lego Star Wars advent calendar this holiday season. Having just finished my 24th day of tiny builds, I'm now left with only one question: Why didn't I do this a long time ago?


In short, these calendars are a phenomenal amount of fun. I mean, who doesn't want to wake up each morning to a mystery Lego build? They also provide amazing bang for your buck. While prices varied by retailer, I was able to nab mine from Kmart for only $34.00AU ($36.19NZ). This year's calendar contained seven minifigures (ten, if you count the mynock, gonk droid, and porg). That's the kind of minifigure count you usually only see on sets north of $150. On top of this, you get nine miniature vehicles, three micro-scale pieces of terrain, and a couple of buildable accessories for your minifigures. These builds come from throughout the filmic saga, and provide a nice representation of both heroes and villains (as shown above).

Hallmark Keepsake Lego C-3PO Christmas Tree Ornament

It's become something of a tradition to receive a new Star Wars Hallmark Keepsake Christmas tree ornament from my parents each birthday. This year, it was a Lego C-3PO - released to mark the 20th anniversary of Lego's Star Wars line (has it really been that long?!)


Threepio is the latest in a line of Lego Star Wars characters that have been immortalised as ornaments (including the Lego Darth Vader I received from my parents some years ago). He's sculpted with Hallmark's usual stunning attention to detail, and will make a great addition to my growing collection of Keepsake ornaments!

Solo Dice Prop Replica

I'm an absolute sucker for any sort of in-universe Star Wars item. Sadly, Lucasfilm doesn't license a whole lot of these items (weapon and helmet replicas being the one exception). It should come as no surprise, then, that I've been pining for a pair of golden sabacc dice ever since seeing Solo. Unfortunately they never showed up in my neck of the woods, and an attempt to buy a pair online earlier this year fell through.


Enter my awesome wife - who managed to track down a pair for my birthday last week. They're a fantastic little trinket made from a sturdy metal that carries a surprising heft. They've also been hit with a wash that gives them that signature "used universe" Star Wars feel. For now they're adorning our Christmas tree, but I suppose that - come the New Year - I'll have to get started on finding a suitable starship cockpit from which to hang them...

More Loose Legacy Collection and Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Figures

It's been rather quiet on the collecting front since Triple Force Friday. During the lull, I've turned my attention back towards filling gaps in my collection of super-articulated 3 3/4" Original Trilogy figures. Last week I was finally able to remedy two glaring omissions: The Legacy Collection BD34 Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi and The Vintage Collection VC27 Wicket.


Released in 2008 and 2010 respectively, these figures still represent the definitive version of each of these characters. As such, they now tend to go for a pretty penny on the secondary market. Fortunately, I happened to chance across both at close to their original RRP - a great deal for a great pair of figures!

The Rise of Skywalker Theatrical Trailer Released

After weeks of rumours about its impending release, the full (and final) theatrical trailer for The Rise of Skywalker premiered today during Monday Night Football. You can check it out below:


The internet is already rife with endless analyses of this two-and-a-half minutes of footage, but I think its best to let a trailer this good speak for itself. One thing's for certain, though - it absolutely nails the poignancy of this movie not only being the last film in the sequel trilogy, but also the final chapter of the decade-spanning Skywalker Saga. I'm not ashamed to admit it had both my wife and I shedding a few tears.

What are your thoughts on the theatrical trailer for The Rise of Skywalker? Be sure to let us know via Facebook or Twitter, or by sending an email to relicsoftheforce@gmail.com!

The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Exclusive Luke Skywalker and Yoda Figures Found

Along with a smattering of new Vintage Collection Rise of Skywalker figures on Triple Force Friday, Hasbro has continued churning out updated versions of several older Vintage Collection figures. Among these are a new Yavin Ceremony Luke Skywalker exclusive to Walmart and a Dagobah Luke and Yoda exclusive to Target. It's unclear when - if ever - these figures will turn up on Australian shores, so I was rapt to be able to nab the trio on the secondary market for less than RRP.


The Walmart exclusive VC151 Luke Skywalker (Yavin) is a repaint and Photo Real update of the Black Series #5 Luke Skywalker I picked up in Houston back in 2013. The Dagobah Luke and Yoda are similar updates to the Black Series #21 Luke Skywalker #22 Yoda from 2014. Luke has again been given the Photo Real treatment, while Yoda has received additional articulation and a new (more accurate) head sculpt. These two figures come in a Target exclusive "Cave of Evil" three pack - though I have no interest in the third (Vader with Luke's face), so I was incredibly happy to be able to pick up the Luke and Yoda on their own.

The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Tatooine Skiff Found

I usually tend to focus on smaller-scale releases from the Micro Machines and Action Fleet lines when adding vehicles to my collection. That being said, I do occasionally pick up some of the more exciting 3 3/4" vehicles - particularly where they provide interesting ways to enhance the display of my figures. The brand new Vintage Collection Tatooine Skiff ticked those boxes and more.


Given the spartan distribution of previous Vintage Collection vehicles in this part of the world, I wasn't entirely sure if we'd even see the Tatooine Skiff in my neck of the woods. Fortunately, EB Games put the Skiff up for preorder back in August, and stock arrived just in time for Triple Force Friday.

The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Wave 9 Figures Found

With The Rise of Skywalker receiving no dedicated 3 3/4" line, the Vintage Collection is now our exclusive source of action figures in the classic scale. Fortunately, Wave 9 of this rebooted line hit (some) stores on Triple Force Friday, giving us a phenomenal quintet of characters from the final film in the Skywalker saga.



While quantity may be lacking (the number of 3/4" figures hitting stores for a new Star Wars product launch will usually be well in to the double digits), the quality certainly isn't. With continually improving super-articulation and the advent of Photo Real faces, each wave of Vintage Collection figures seems to be surpassing the quality of its predecessors. The same trend continues with this wave.

Triple Force Friday (October 2019)

I went into this year's Star Wars toy launch - dubbed Triple Force Friday - with no small sense of foreboding. Between the lacklustre launch of Solo's line of Star Wars toys and the systemic distribution problems ever since, there were a lot of reasons to think that things wouldn't go all that well. Calls to my local brick-and-mortar toy retailers (which here in Sydney comprise Kidstuff, EB Games, Kmart, Target, and Myer) didn't do much to alleviate the sense of impending doom. My inquiries were met with a variety of different - though universally discouraging - replies, from complete ignorance about the new releases (Kidstuff), to uncertainty about the release date (shipping delays mean Kmart's stock may be up to two weeks late), to somehow thinking I was a merchandiser who "worked for Star Wars" and would be bringing new stock myself (thanks for that particularly bewildering conversation, Target). Nevertheless, I did my best to stay positive - helped largely by my relentlessly optimistic wife and collecting-partner-in-crime. Fortunately, it paid off.


While every other retailer was bereft of new stock outside of the Star Wars Lego line, EB Games came through with a smattering of Hasbro's wares - including a single unopened case of the latest wave of The Vintage Collection. As an exclusively 3 3/4" collector, that was all I was after. In a a few short seconds I was able to get my hands on all five new Rise of Skywalker figures. And with that, my Triple Force Friday was over.

Well, with that and a cheeky Tatooine Skiff I'd preordered from EB Games a couple of months prior.

The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection Figures (Triple Force Friday Edition)

First they came for Action Fleet. Then they came for Micro Machines. Then they brought Micro Machines back... only to take them again. Now, The Rise of Skywalker is set to be the first Star Wars film without its own dedicated line of 3 3/4" figures. Instead, this scale will be served exclusively by the ongoing Vintage Collection. All of this means that my once broad collecting focus has now narrowed down to one single line of products. At the very least, it's going to make this upcoming Triple Force Friday a lot less painful on my wallet.


There's both good and bad in having the Vintage Collection as the sole 3 3/4" line for TROS. The upside is that we'll be getting the best possible versions of these figures - including comprehensive accessories, super articulation, and gorgeous Photo Real face treatments. The downside is that we'll be paying more per figure, and will likely see a far more limited range of characters available (at least to begin with). There's also the issue of distribution. Stores here in Sydney are still clogged with pegwarmers from April 2018's first wave of the rebooted Vintage Collection, with no sign of the subsequent seven waves released since then. If it wasn't for the secondary market, my Star Wars action figure collecting would have ground to a halt well over a year ago.

Hopefully the full product reset on Triple Force Friday will see stores at least stock the first TROS wave of figures. With that in mind, I've now assembled an updated list of the Vintage Collection figures I'll be attempting to hunt down.

The Force Awakens in Concert (Sydney, Australia)

Ever since moving to Sydney earlier this year, my wife and I had been looking for an excuse to see a show at the Opera House. The perfect opportunity presented itself last week when the Sydney Symphony Orchestra presented a live performance of The Force Awakens.


Set to a rear-projected screening of the film under the sprawling curves of the Opera House, this was about as good as it gets (at least, short of seeing the score conducted by John Williams himself). It was a great way to start building anticipation for the release of the final film in the Skywalker saga this December.

Now we just need to squeeze in a rewatch of the The Last Jedi. Maybe on Triple Force Friday?

The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Tatooine Skiff 3 Pack Found

While I've managed to pre-order the phenomenal Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Jabba's Tatooine Skiff from EB Games Australia, it's less clear if and when the accompanying Tatooine Skiff 3 Pack will arrive down under. Our best bet is that, like the skiff, we'll see it released on 'Triple Force Friday' this October 4th. Fortunately, I won't have to wait that long - as I managed to pick up this trio of figures loose on the secondary market for close to RRP.


This set features repacks of the Vizam and Brock Starsher from The Black Series (both of whom I missed the first time around) along with a brand new figure, Vedain. Each figure features the expected minimum of fourteen points of articulation, while Vizam and Vedain's helmets are also removable. All three carry blaster pistols, while Brock also comes armed with a vibro-ax. Ordinarily, Vizam is also packed with a rail-mounted cannon, however this wasn't included in my particular purchase (and, unless you have the Sail Barge, isn't really that useful).

Now all these skiff guards need is a skiff to guard!

The Rise of Skywalker Second Teaser Trailer and Teaser Poster Released

While we all expected to see some new footage from The Rise of Skywalker at D23, most of us expected this to be in the form of a behind-the-scenes sizzle reel - just like the one we got for The Last Jedi. Instead, we were surprised with something that basically amounts to a second full teaser trailer. You can check it out below.


While the entire trailer only features about thirty seconds of new footage, there's an enormous amount to take in: B-Wing, Y-Wings, C-3PO with red eyes, a Blockade Runner, and an entire armada of Imperial Star Destroyers... And then of course there's that shot at the very end. But while the internet no doubt goes wild with speculation, it's important to remember that these trailers are deliberately crafted for the purposes of misdirection. Obviously, this is even more true when we're dealing with a film by the very father of the 'mystery box'. Everything else aside, this teaser is exactly what I need right now. A brief, thrilling reminder of how momentous this film will be - but without giving me even the slightest hint of how it's all going to end.

Obi-Wan Kenobi Live-Action TV Series Announced

The long-rumoured - but never confirmed - live-action Obi-Wan television series has now been officially announced by Disney at this year's D23. Details are still thin on the ground, but Disney has confirmed that the series will be set eight years after Episode III - Revenge of the Sith, with Ewan McGregor reprising the titular role.


I, for one, couldn't be happier. This is the one story I've been hoping to see ever since Disney first announced that it would begin producing 'spin-off' films and television series. John Jackson Miller's novel Kenobi remains one of my favourite in the old Expanded Universe, so I can't wait to see a new take on Obi-Wan's desert adventures in the years between the prequel and original trilogies.

How about you? What are your thoughts on this announcement? Be sure to let us know via Facebook or Twitter, or by sending an email to relicsoftheforce@gmail.com!