The Hunt Is On - The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" Wave 11 Figures Found

Yes, they're finally here! Almost five months after the The Mandalorian series debut, we finally have the chance to own characters from the show in Hasbro's legacy toy scale. Wave 11 of The Vintage Collection 3 3/4" line includes VC164 Cara Dune, VC165 Remnant Stormtrooper, and VC166 The Mandalorian, and I was recently able to nab all three for $24.99AU ($26.51NZ) a piece.

Honestly, I was a little concerned as to whether I'd be able to get my hands on these. EB Games is now the only brick-and-mortar store in Australia stocking the Vintage Collection, and tends to receive only a case or two of each wave. Online purchasing had been similarly dire, with previous waves only being sold by random assortment. It's for this reason that I've been resorting more and more to the secondary market for new releases. Then EB Games went and did something wonderful: starting with wave 10, their online store began listing new releases by individual figure. I was able to preorder all three figures shortly after they were listed online, and couldn't have been happier to see them finally arrive last week.

First up is the Mandalorian himself, decked out in his early-season pre-beskar armour. He comes with everything you'd expect: his trademark pulse rifle, his sidearm, and a nicely-sculpted shoulder cape. The sidearm fits snugly into a working holster at his hip, and the rifle clips onto his back through a very nifty attachment. As you'd expect with any Vintage Collection figure, the Mandalorian is brimming with articulation - allowing you to pose him in just about any way you can imagine. The paint app is on point, with his beskar helm getting a very nice dirty metallic finish that - in this collector's opinion - rivals that of the larger (and more expensive) 6" figure.

But as sought-after as the Mandalorian might be, he's by no means the star of this wave. That honour goes to Cara Dune. In fact, she may be one of my favourite figures yet in the Vintage Collection line. I simply cannot convey how impressed I am by Hasbro's job in capturing this character in plastic. The sculpt and articulation work together beautifully to create a figure that is equally wonderful as both a toy and a display piece. The pièce de résistance is the Photo Real treatment of the face - what I think is the best usage of the technique yet seen in this scale. Gina Carano's likeness is captured perfectly, right down to the tiny Rebel Alliance emblem on her cheek. It's a staggeringly accurate amount of detail for a figure that's less than four inches tall.

Rounding out this wave is the Remnant Stormtrooper. For some time now, Hasbro has been telling us that the financial viability of the Vintage Collection line rests on future waves featuring a healthy number of repacks alongside new sculpts. And if Hasbro has to rerelease figures, then this is precisely the way to go about it. They've taken the utterly perfect Vintage Collection Rogue One stormtrooper mould, dirtied it up, and - hey presto - created a 'brand new' figure that we'll all lap up. Not only that, but it's precisely the kind of character that - because of its army-building potential - is likely to sell in even higher numbers than either the Mandalorian or Cara Dune.

Indeed, it seems that Hasbro still hasn't fully realised just how lucrative this approach can be. A Mandalorian-carded rerelease of the Vintage Collection Death Trooper would sell just as well, as would a dirtied up version of the Black Series Biker Scout. Heck, pack him with one of those white Legacy Collection speeder bikes, and you'll have the makings of a set that will fly off shelves - all without spending a single penny on a new mould.

Until then, this trio will have to suffice for my 3 3/4" collection of Mandalorian figures. Fingers crossed we'll see some more representation as season 2 draws closer.

Hot Wheels Commemorative Series Return of the Jedi Speeder Bike

Last Christmas, my wife surprised me with the entire first wave of the highly sought-after Hot Wheels Commemorative Series starships. The second wave is yet to turn up in brick-and-mortar stores here in Australia, but thanks to a recent Amazon order from the US I was able to get my hands on the first vehicle from that wave: a Return of the Jedi Speeder Bike.

Although he looks great straight out of the box, I gave him the same Citadel Nuln Oil treatment I gave to the first wave. It's a simple customisation, but one that makes all of the tiny little details stand out even more.

Also included is another piece of the die-cast Death Star. This time around, its the superlaser - now making my battle station fully armed and operational!

It's gratifying to have rounded out the first two trilogies in this line. Now it's time to hunt own the final three vehicles!