HEIGHT: 1.83 meters
STATUS: Imperial Shock Troops
AFFILIATION: Galactic Empire
WEAPON OF CHOICE: Imperial Issue Blaster, Heavy Blaster Rifle
After a couple of waves of straight modern updates to vintage Kenner figures, Hasbro continued the trend by updating these waves with never before offered action figures. One of the biggest glaring omissions in the vintage Kenner era was the Sandtrooper, or as Kenner called it first, the Tatooine Stormtrooper. All it took was a new orange pauldron and a dirty paint job to make the classic white Stormtrooper an all-new character. And that’s what Kenner did just before the close of 1996 for collectors. Sadly, the Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] figure didn’t deliver the goods we had hoped. Still borrowing a great deal from its hulky ancestor, the Stormtrooper, the Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] brings more of that exaggerated look to the basic figure line when they were doing so well trimming down the proportions of these Imperials. The Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] is ultimately a disappointment, but Kenner gets an “A” for effort because this is what we want to see in the modern line: never before offered action figures.
In retrospect, it’s hard to believe that this likeness of the “base” Stormtrooper figure was approved by Lucasfilm Ltd. It’s the worst interpretation of the character we can think of across the various licensees that produce Star Wars products. The lenses on the helmet are terrible. The vocoder is a round black circle instead of an oblong shape, and the proportions of the helmet are just honestly dreadful. And we haven’t even described anything below the neck yet! The chest is too barreled in shape and drastically too thin in the waist. The armor is too chunky in general, and the pose is horrific. You have ONE option to pose the Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper]. And that’s at the ready with his blaster rifle. We’re still scratching our heads on how “Tatooine Stormtrooper” got approved for this figure’s name too. By the time the “green” phase of the POTF2 line look came around, Kenner officially changed the name of this figure to the less-clumsy "Sandtrooper."
The Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] comes with two accessories: the heavy blaster rifle as mentioned earlier, and a removable survival backpack. Both are authentic and have strong screen-accuracy, but Kenner could have done better to make them more screen accurate, especially the gun. The survival backpack isn’t bad at all. And it has been tooled in a way that doesn’t interfere too terribly with the figure’s center of gravity. In other words, you can position the Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] with or without his survival backpack, and the figure will be able to stand up regardless. The Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] has nice paint operations. But it is challenging to get past the sculpt, so good a good paint job is moot here. The lack of articulation does seals this figure as a failure for us. With troopers, Kenner needs to provide more movement for them. Single static poses don’t bode well for the line. Collectors want versatility with their action figures. And the Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] certainly doesn’t provide that at all.
Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper]
Status: Sandtrooper [Tatooine Stormtrooper] is an all-new figure.
Articulation Count: 6 points (6 areas of articulation)
Articulation Details: swivel head (1), swivel left shoulder (1), swivel right shoulder (1), swivel waist (1), swivel left hip (1), swivel right hip (1)
Accessory Count: 2
Accessory Details: removable survival backpack, heavy blaster rifle
Date Stamp: 1996
Assortment Number: 69570/69601
Retail: $4.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.