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The Clone Wars [Season 3  Shadow of the Dark Side]

Nikto Guard - TCW [SOTDS] - Basic (Exclusive)

Name: Nikto Guard
Collection: The Clone Wars
Number: N/A (Exclusive)
Source: The Clone Wars (Film)
Availability: September 2010
License: Hasbro

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Puko Naga is a Nikto guard in Jabba the Hutt's palace. With his fellow guards, he protects the crime lord from his many victims and disgruntled associates. Thousands of years ago, the Nikto swore their allegiance to the Hutts, and they still carry out this pledge by working as guards, warriors and henchmen for the Hutts.

What do you call a victim of an early 2009 Battle Packs set that was pulled out last minute so Hasbro could save a few pennies? The answer would be 2010's Toys R Us exclusive Nikto Guard action figure, a very cool figure that finally arrived to collectors more than a year and half late. Most collectors were truly and extremely frustrated in 2008 for multiple reasons. It was an era of repacks galore, ridiculously priced mainstream product and exclusives and a lot less product was included in those inflated prices. Nikto Guard was just one example of these terrible events and if he had been released in the awesome Jabba's Palace Battle Packs set in the first (blue) phase of The Clone Wars line, the gesture certainly would have been warmly welcomed by all. But as with many things in the Star Wars line, time seems to age them and now after only two to three short years have passed since this sculpt was developed, the Nikto Guard feels slightly out of date than even many of the 2010 figures. More articulation seems to be the platform for Hasbro now, so anything with less than average may get interpreted as inferior. But the figure isn't a failure in the least. It has a stunning sculpt and a beautiful paint job and comes with more accessories than the average basic figure. Still, he unfortunately isn't perfect. And you already know that we are going to tell you why.

Nikto Guard has no articulation in the legs except for hip joints. While this is barely enough to pose him unaided, he has bizarrely positioned legs (one leading forward and one flush with the body) so you'll need to bend him back to throw off his natural center of gravity (which pulls him forward to the ground awfully). Thankfully he comes with an action figure stand and you're likely going to need it if you want to position him any other way. Besides this issue (which we find particularly annoying at this part because Hasbro should master whether an action figure can stand or not by now) Nikto Guard is a pretty spectacular specimen even though he has his shortcomings. For example, he has one of the best paint jobs in The Clone Wars basic figure line and he totally looks like he belongs in Jabba's palace. The packaging describes this particular Nikto as Puko Naga and not much is written about him in the Expanded Universe (yet). He can be found in the scene in The Clone Wars film where Anakin confronts Jabba and TC-70. He comes with removable head gear, a long rifle, a shorter blaster rifle and a removable satchel which can also house his shorter gun. We only hope the next realistic style Nikto character from Hasbro also comes with all of these cool accessories! But we are going off topic now. Let's redirect.

Since this species has sworn their allegiance to the Hutts, we will forever associate them with Jabba (and Ziro and Gardula and what-have-you). And this is more than fine since the very first time we ever saw a Nikto species was in Star Wars Episode VI: Return Of The Jedi (in Jabba's palace). They are certainly an Episode VI centric species and we're not sure if we can picture them in any other environment. As an action figure, the Nikto Guard is too high-priced. At $9.99, it is a lot of money for a figure that doesn't have significant articulation and would have definitely served much better as a complement to the Jabba's Palace Battle Packs set. (Hasbro, please learn from these mistakes. This is a perfect example of penny-wise/pound-foolish.) That time has long passed and we suppose it is better to offer this figure as an exclusive rather than to cancel it altogether. But we're principled and it bothers us that our dollars didn't go a little further when we picked up that awesome Jabba the Hutt set. We'll let it go. But Nikto Guard, while awesome and a figure we personally highly desire, may not have the ability to create enough buzz and successful as an exclusive figure. And we honestly don't know how kids will react to him. Nikto Guard maybe a huge risk as a basic exclusive figure that isn't part of a regular wave of figures or included in a different Battle Packs set. But this is how he will be available and we hope he will be successful enough so that more will come out at a later date. Time will tell. As a diorama fodder piece, this figure rocks, but we bet most collectors will expect more from this piece than it can give.

Collector Notes

Nikto Guard

Status: Nikto Guard is an all-new figure. Nikto Guard was originally designed to be included as part of 2009's TCW Jabba's Palace Battle Packs set but was removed due to tooling cost budget constraints. It then became a Toys R Us exclusive and incidentally flopped on store shelves.

Articulation Count: 10 points

Articulation Details: ball-socket head, 2 ball-jointed shoulders, 2 ball-jointed elbows, 2 swivel wrists, swivel waist, 2 swivel hips

Accessory Count: 4

Accessory Details: blaster rifle, removable hood, satchel, blaster pistol

Date Stamp: 2008

Assortment Number: 21090

UPC: 653569517498

Retail: $9.99 USD

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

The Clone Wars [Shadow Of The Dark Side]
All Products

Added: October 1, 2010
Category: Clone Wars, The [Shadow Of The Dark Side]
Reviewer: Paul Harrison
Score:
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