In this concept art by Joe Johnston, the Imperial snowtrooper wears armor with features that are reminiscent of armor actually worn by samurai warriors. The gear has stylized elegance while still protecting the trooper from blaster fire and extreme cold.
Hasbro definitely took some risks with the lineup of action figures based on concept art in the Legacy Collection. Not all the choices were safe bets and branched into less popular characters or revisits of ones already given to us, like the Snowtrooper for example. For the most part, it has paid off and the new Snowtrooper based on Joe Johnston’s sketches is proof that this sub line is not getting dull at all and has room for so much more potential! The Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper is a breathtakingly fresh approach to one of our favorite Imperials and it looks so different from the first concept art-based Snowtrooper we received was 2007's TAC Concept Snowtrooper (Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series) (30 42) figure and again in 2009's LC Ralph McQuarrie Concept Collection (2 of 2) boxed set which was a Toys R Us exclusive. This time around the Snowtrooper looks completely different from what we are used to and it more colorful and more articulated. It will complement your Concept Boba Fett (Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series) (30 15) very nicely if you choose the correct head when displaying because one is Joe Johnston-specific. Hasbro ups the ante on articulation and this figure has been graced with super-articulation, a level that the McQuarrie Snowtrooper did not achieve. Also, Hasbro has opted not to use that many soft-goods on their concept figures, so we count ourselves very fortunate that this figure does have a fuzzy soft-goods skirt. (And it actually works quite well on this figure. We traditionally do not prefer partial soft-goods on our figures.) We hope that Hasbro continues to be steadfast with periodic releases of concept art based figures in the basic figure line. Without these concepts, Star Wars may have never turned out the way it did, so we have a lot of thanking to do for these artists. The Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper will likely be one of the more popular concept art figures this year, mostly due to its reference to Episode V. It is a fan favorite film and the characters from this film (or the production of this film) are always zealously purchased without too much consideration.
Although the final Snowtrooper used in the film looks nothing like this figure, we have to admit that the concept is very Star Wars friendly and looks as if it could have been used in the film. While his armor looks a bit space-aged, he has believable thicker armor and boots to obviously protect him from the cold and other harsher elements. The armor is complete with functioning holsters (painted navy blue) as well as a multi-layered armor system and wide belt. Missing in this design is the Snowtrooper’s large heavy assault rifle. He comes with a simple blaster pistol that just doesn’t seem to fit an Imperial very well. The figure is mostly white with navy blue trimming and very few red details. You will also find hints of silver which are intended to show metal portions of the uniform. The figure’s backpack is one of the neatest we have seen in a long time in any Star Wars collection. Multiple geometric shapes make up the design and it has quite a bit of color for a figure that looks pretty stagnant in white. Gray, red, silver, blue and white all contribute to the backpack’s details, textures and shape. The backpack is very well designed and one of the most impressive sculpts we have seen. While the front of his belt is a little bit boring, Hasbro makes up for it on the backside of the figure. Extra pouches have been incorporated into the design of the belt and it makes it look absolutely fantastic. The boots look as if they have been designed with cleats and this is a very believable construct that we actually wished the movie version Snowtroopers had. (Or, if they did, they weren’t as noticeable as on this figure.) On an ice planet, it would make sense for a boot or shoe to have some sort of device that would allow for better grip and traction in the snow. The Concept Art Ki-Adi-Mundi (BD38) didn’t seem to be that well received by collectors and we personally find this disappointing. But it has been a trend in Star Wars collecting that concept art figures based on the Original Trilogy seem to do the best, especially Imperials.
The 2007 TAC Concept Snowtrooper (Ralph McQuarrie Signature Series) (30 42) figure was a beast to find at retail. We suspect the same will be true for this Joe Johnston version. But, if you do decide to pick this figure up and add it into your collection, you will no doubt have a special figure. Loaded with articulation that most of us will not need, the Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper is reason to purchase alone for its nostalgic value. Ironically, the concept art figures aren’t made or intended to be the textbook definition of an action figure. They are miniature sculptures that give us a reduced sized model of what the Star Wars movie makers used to bring our favorite films to life. But if you are looking to army build with this figure, we suppose you will be able to do that because the figure is capable of so much movement. This Snowtrooper figure looks fantastic next to the vintage Snowtrooper (repainted and re-released in the same wave) as well as the McQuarrie Snowtrooper. We are getting the Star Wars universe in so many new and refreshing ways now. We almost never expected Hasbro to go outside Ralph McQuarrie’s work for ideas on concept action figures. But we are glad they did. It is a rich area for action figure development and it seems that they have only scratched the surface so far. We hope more than few more are on the way to us. It was fantastic to get two more concept art figures from Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back in the Legacy Collection in 2009. Concept Art IG-88 (BD40) and Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper are two of the standout moments from the line. And of course we hope that more from Episode V (like Lando Calrissian or Princess Leia) are in the works next! One thing is for sure; these are some of the most delightful action figures Hasbro has ever produced.
Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper
Status: Episode V Concept Art Snowtrooper is an all-new figure.
Articulation Count: 22 points (14 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: ball-socket head (1), ball-jointed left shoulder (2), ball-jointed right shoulder (2), ball-jointed left elbow (2), ball-jointed right elbow (2), swivel left wrist (1), swivel right wrist (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1), ball-jointed left knee (2), ball-jointed right knee (2), ball-jointed left ankle (2), ball-jointed right ankle (2)
Accessory Count: 2
Accessory Details: blaster, removable backpack
Original Droid Factory/Build A Droid Part: HK-50 right leg
Date Stamp: 2007
Assortment Number: 87866/87535
Retail: $7.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.