Pocketmodel TCG Imperial Power-Up Pack

Among the basket of Easter goodies given to me by my girlfriend was a real blast-from-the-past - an Imperial Power-Up Pack for the Star Wars Pocketmodel TCG game.

I first came across the Pocketmodel line back in 2012, when - only a couple of weeks after first moving to Houston - I found a number of the Order 66 and Ground Assault game packs on clearance at Target. Each pack contained 4 to 8 random vehicles that (along with the included micro dice and game cards) could be used to play a table-top strategy game.

Instead of containing a randomised assortment of miniatures, this Imperial Power-Up pack comes with a specific force comprising the Star Destroyer Executor; Darth Vader's Imperial Shuttle, four TIE Fighters, and - to ensure you have some foes for target practice - two X-Wing Starfighters. Also included are a pair of dice and 30 game cards. The vehicles come as sheets of punch-out plastic pieces that assemble much like those old glow-in-the-dark dinosaur skeletons we loved as kids. What's really impressive is how authentic these simply-constructed models end up looking on the table-top. Ships like the TIE fighter are relatively easy to portray in this medium, but it's clear that a lot of thought has gone into how to best represent more complex designs like the Imperial Shuttle (my favourite vehicle from this pack).

I've yet to give the game mechanics a try, but once I have I'll be sure to add my thoughts here - so stay tuned for updates!

Star Wars Rebels Season 4 Trailer Released

This morning's Star Wars Rebels panel saw the release of the trailer for the fourth - and now confirmed final - season of the show. You can check it out below:

While I've had nothing but praise for Rebels from the outset, I'm not hugely disappointed that it'll soon be coming to an end. We all knew that the show would have to stop short of the original trilogy- and with the events of Rogue One and A New Hope only months away, it makes sense that there's not a whole lot more for the show to explore. Further, Rebels has always been a show fueled by character development, and it's clear that every member of the Ghost crew is now bearing down on the final few chapters of their own personal arcs.

The trailer itself shows that Rebels continues to be the glue binding the Star Wars galaxy together. Featuring a number of as-yet unseen elements from the original trilogy (X-Wings!) and a swath of head-nods to Rogue One, the final season of Rebels looks as though it will complete its task of beautifully stitching the original and prequel trilogies together.

What are your thoughts on this trailer for the final season of Star Wars Rebels? Be sure to let us know via Facebook or Twitter, or by sending an email to relicsoftheforce@gmail.com!

The Last Jedi Teaser Trailer Released

As most fans predicted, this morning's The Last Jedi panel at Star Wars Celebration saw the release of the very first teaser trailer for the film - and our first glimpse at the next installment in the Star Wars saga. You can check it out below!

It's hard to get any strong sense of the film from just these disparate shots, but that (as my girlfriend sagely noted) is the whole point of a teaser trailer. From the looks of things, The Last Jedi will have a very different aesthetic to previous Star Wars films - featuring some stunningly unique visual elements unlike anything else we've seen in the galaxy before. Fans will also be happy that Luke looks to be playing a much larger role in this film than in The Force Awakens (though that really isn't saying much). It's also great to see the return of the much-underused Captain Phasma. Here's hoping that this film will give her a chance to truly shine.

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

The Hunt Is On - Rogue One 3 3/4" "Jedha Revolt" Pack Found

The Rogue One 3 3/4" Jedha Revolt Pack has been a long time coming. First announced back in 2016, it's yet to hit most brick-and-mortar stores. Recently, however, it turned up in the online Hasbro Toyshop - and with a 20%-off voucher with e-mail sign-up bringing the price of the set down from $24.99US to $19.99US, it was impossible to say no.

The real attraction of this set is that it's our first (and currently only) way of obtaining the characters of Saw Gerrera, Edrio Two Tubes, and the Imperial Hovertank Pilot. Edrio and the Pilot are both fantastic figures, making up for a lack of articulation with some excellent tooling and a great paintjob. But what really makes this set is Saw Gerrera. I'll just go ahead and say it: this might very well be the best-looking figure Hasbro have released since making the transition back to 5-points-of-articulation (and yes, that includes the full Force Awakens line). The figure bears an uncanny resemblance to Forest Whitaker, and the detail on his outfit is absolutely superb. From the separately molded cape and breathing tubes, to the working holster at his hip - this is 3 3/4" sculpting at its finest.

Each figure is packed with a single screen-used side-arm, while Saw also comes with his staff. The fourth character - Jyn Erso (Jedha) - is, unfortunately, a straight repack of the single-carded figure from Wave 2. But $24.99US (or $19.99US if you can manage to get the Hasbro Shop discount) is still great value for the just the three new figures, working out at only a few cents more per figure than what you would pay if they were released on single cards. Granted, there are no bonus oversized action-feature weapons as are usually included, but for most collectors - myself included - this'll be no real loss.

Rogue One Target Exclusive Blu-Ray and DVD Set

Yesterday saw the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story on Blu-Ray and DVD. As reported back in February, there were a multitude of options for purchasing the film. After some careful consideration, I opted to pre-order Target's exclusive 5-disc set. It arrived in the mail today, and I'm absolutely rapt with it!

The set contains the film on Blu-Ray, 3D Blu-Ray, and DVD, as well as an additional Blu-Ray disc featuring the full bevy of bonus features, and a DVD containing two documentaries exclusive to the Target release - "Inside the Creature Shop" and "Digital Storytelling". The best part, however, is the presentation. The set comes with five interchangeable images of different members of the Rogue One cast that allows you to personalise the front cover of the box. The inner case is also decorated with two gorgeous images from Scarif. and the whole things slips inside a clear protective cover etched with the Death Star schematics.

I'm currently without access to a Blu-Ray player - so haven't had a chance to review the special features yet - but my thoughts will be added here as soon as I do. It's worth noting, however, that the list of special features doesn't include any deleted scenes. As with the Force Awakens Blu-Ray, any trailers for the film are also conspicuously absent. 

At $29.99US ($43.24NZ), it's fantastic value - being the same price as Best Buy's exclusive which comes without the additional DVD of bonus content.

[UPDATE 09/04/2017: Unfortunately, the Target exclusive set is now out of stock.] 

Lego BB-8 Keyring

In addition to my miniature U-Wing model, I also picked up this BB-8 keyring for $4.99US ($7.09) while at Florida Legoland.

Lego now have a range of minifigure keyrings available in their stores, but you'll be hard-pressed to find one more adorable than this!

Lego 30496 U-Wing Fighter Mini Building Set

While at Legoland Florida, I picked up a Lego mini building set for $4.99US ($7.09NZ) that I'm yet to see available anywhere else: the 30496 U-Wing Fighter.

The U-Wing is the latest in a line of bagged miniature vehicles that I've become incredibly fond of. Small, affordable, and simple to assemble, these sets still pack an enormous amount of detail into very few parts. The U-Wing Fighter is no different. It's a great representation of the ship made famous by Rogue One - accurately capturing a number of distinctive features, right down to the open troop bay on the underside. My only real disappointment is that the wings are fixed in the forward position. Previous Lego mini sets have managed to capture some great moving features (like the opening S-foils on Poe's X-Wing, and the lowering boarding ramp on Kylo Ren's Comand Shuttle), and there are certainly Lego pieces available that could have made rotating wings a reality without greatly increasing the part count. In fact, that modification is most likely one I'll make in the near future - so stay tuned for updates!