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The Force Awakens

First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter - TFA - Vehicles (Class III) (Desert) (Exclusive)

Name: First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter
Collection: The Force Awakens
Number: N/A (Toys R Us Exclusive)
Source: The Force Awakens
Availability: October 2015
License: Hasbro

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The elite of the First Order starfighter pilots have access to specialized craft, such as two-seater TIE craft outfitted with enhanced weapons and sensor systems.

We’re not too reserved when it comes to how we feel about the current state of Star Wars collecting. It’s like the equivalent of dropping a freshwater feeder goldfish into a saltwater tank to feed a lionfish. (We’ve seen this happen.) The goldfish goes into shock from the different water type. But it still knows it's endanger yet can barely swim away fast enough before the lionfish sucks it down its throat with a strong vacuum like force. Do you see the correlation? OK, so maybe that’s a pretty dramatic exaggeration, but what has happened to the 3.75” Star Wars line is just a huge shock to the system while the “big fish” Hasbro will still be fed regardless of how we feel about it (because the stuff seemingly still sells well regardless of the quality). Alright, enough whining now. You already know well now that the everything has changed as we know it. Class III vehicles are no bigger than the size of what we referred to as Class II just a few short years ago. And coupled with smaller vehicles is a hugely increased MSRP. Now you’ll have to shell out $39.99 or more for a vehicle that used to cost $19.99. Talk about inflation, huh? We received the general release First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter on Force Friday, and because it is technically a one-off vehicle, Hasbro had to find a quick way to reuse. They did it via the Toys R Us exclusive First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter (Elite). It’s the same dang vehicle with a repainted pilot and sand “battle-damage” that looks more like pollen accumulation you see on your car’s hood during the changes in season.

As you know, the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter has a seemingly great sculpt, but the quality of the craftsmanship is going to have you disappointed because it doesn’t hold up strongly like it should. For reasons unknown, Hasbro has cast this vehicle is a very rubbery plastic. This is especially true for the wings as they cannot hold up the weight of the cockpit and bow very quickly when displayed. And once again, the wings sadly bow and prevent the vehicle from looking crisp and upright. This was never an issue for vehicles in any previous line that we can think of to date. Sure, there were a few soft parts here and there to prevent injury or breakage, but this is just purely a bad move. And as you know, we DEFINITELY don’t like paying more money for lower quality. And that exactly what we get again here. Like so many other pieces of merchandise in The Force Awakens line, the release of the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter is more frustrating than anything else. It’s a beautiful design, albeit it has been tooled on a much smaller scale sadly. But the detail is impressive and we love the way it should look.... on paper that is. The final product is absolutely disappointing. There are positives however. The red color flashes on the very dark body of the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter are a nice touch. And because this is a “Special Forces” TIE fighter, the cockpit houses two pilots, something that is a first for the Star Wars universe. Had this been cast in tougher plastic, the vehicle would have resonated more strongly with collectors (despite its small scale). Even methods to fix the bowing of the wings last only temporarily. Whether you utilize methods to correct this, the wings will once again collapse under the pressure. What a shame.

Included with the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter is a First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Elite pack-in figure. Just like the regular release version, it’s the same old figure but this time he comes with two red stripes on his helmet. Unlike the Build A Weapon version, this pack-in figure comes with a removable helmet and the pilot has a very generic human face. Actually, the face is so generic it barely looks like a believable Star Wars character. We’re not exactly sure what that means either, so we’ll just say that the figure looks much better with the helmet on and in place anyway. The pack-in figure is just a repaint of what has been released before, essentially all-new, but it is clear that they relied on the legs of the the regular 2015 TFA First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Build A Weapon (Space) figure for perhaps some stability and uniformity. We’re willing to bet that they’ve been completely reused and not altered, but there are just a few spots which has us questioning otherwise. But probably for all intents and purposes you can consider the pack-in figure a repaint of the regular release version. The great news is that the First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Elite fits like a glove in the cockpit seat. It couldn’t fit better and we’re quite amazed that this has been so masterfully orchestrated. (It’s hard to get excited for things like this anymore.) But we still can’t swallow the $42.99 MSRP for this release. It’s lazy, it’s not as nice looking and it hasn’t been updated when compared to the regular version of the First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter. Kids probably won’t realize how much they’ve been shortchanged, but the whiny collectors will. And we’re proud and loud whiny collectors.

Collector Notes

First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter

Assortment Number: B4014

UPC: 630509368969

Retail: $42.99 USD

Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on Click here to check the market value on eBay! listings.

First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter

Status: First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Elite is a repaint of 2015's TFA First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter Class III (Space) vehicle.

Features Count: 4

Feature Details: firing projectiles, rotating turret, opening hatch, articulated canopy gun

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: 2 projectiles

Date Stamp: N/A

First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Elite

Status: First Order TIE Fighter Pilot Elite is a repaint of the pack-in figure from 2015's TFA First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter Class III (Space) vehicle.

Articulation Count: 5 points (5 areas of articulation)

Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1)

Accessory Count: 2

Accessory Details: removable helmet/chest box combination, blaster pistol

Date Stamp: N/A

The Force Awakens

All Products

Added: October 23, 2015
Category: Force Awakens, The
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
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