The Empire encompassed thousands of worlds, with countless climate and terrain challenges. Their stormtrooper ranks reflected this through specialized units trained and equipped to operate in specific environments.
The sandtrooper is a desert terrain stormtrooper. Sandtroopers are largely identical to standard stormtroopers except they have additional training in specialized areas. Their armor consists of an 18-piece anti-blaster cocoon shell with heat-reflective coating worn over a temperature-control body glove. The sandtrooper helmet features automatic polarized lenses, a built-in comlink and breathing filters. These stormtroopers are specifically designed for high temperature environments. Instead of depending on machinery that may not function in hostile environments, sandtroopers make use of local creatures for transportation.
The stormtrooper detachment dispatched by Lord Darth Vader to investigate a crashed escape pod on Tatooine just prior to the Battle of Yavin consisted of sandtroopers. They had heavy weapons, survival gear, and shoulder pauldrons denoting rank.
Sideshow Collectibles really knows how to reuse their Militaries Of Star Wars templates very quickly one after another. And this is a good thing and a bad thing. While this will ensure that the armored figures will keep coming to us at a steady pace, it may endanger the line as collectors could get bored with getting the same type of figure over and over again, even if it's a horse of a different color. The latter may be true for the release of this figure. We just got the Sandtrooper (Sergeant: Tatooine) only five months before this release and while there are clear and obvious differences, the changes just aren't dramatic enough for our wholly devoted liking. This is not a jab at the sculpt, because the sculpt is flawless, but in order for a reused mold to become more exciting (heck, even new) than the last, the execution in the final paint job needs to be raised to new levels. Yes, the Sandtrooper (Squad Leader: Tatooine) is quite possibly the trademark sandtrooper from our beloved first Star Wars film, but it seems like we just got this from Sideshow (and essentially we did) and there isn't enough new things brought to the table to make him flourish as a successful collectible. There have been yet again further enhancements made to the armored figure body type. It seems as if Sideshow is adamant about getting all those wonderful points of articulation as tight yet flexible as possible, and they have succeeded here completely. This figure can actually stand without toppling over for a good amount of time and we are thrilled that the engineering has been tweaked to give such positive results. (And oh how it makes us ache that this upgrade was done in time for the 1:6 Scale Imperial Stormtrooper figures.
We love that orange pauldron, don't we? And it looks fabulous on this 1:6 Scale Figure as well. There is something symbolic about it and it remains one of the standout "things" from all the Star Wars films. But perhaps it's also because our first Hasbro action figure (from the 1996 The Power Of The Force "2" [Red] line) also had an orange one. It could be a lot of reasons, but there the character just gives the collector a very memorable nostalgia and because of its striking appearance, it kind of leave an indelible mark of the psyche of Star Wars fans everywhere. Besides, the reaction this character gives makes it hard to deny that it is absolutely the definitive look for these Tatooine stormtroopers. This figure comes with pretty much all the same accessories as the sergeant but most importantly comes with the very popular concussion blaster rifle that seems to be the most favorite gun with collectors. Just like the sergeant, the squad leader comes with a soft-goods pauldron. It is one of out most favorite parts. After years of hard and unbendable Hasbro accessories, it is quite a joy to get one that is more accurately based on the props used in the film. Also included with this figure are interchangeable hands, a pouch that can be laced through the belt, a removable shoulder pouch, a standard Imperial blaster, the signature backpack (with two removable pieces) and the 1:6 Scale Figure stand. There is a great deal of pieces for this figure which is probably the reason why he commands the $109.99 MSRP. When completely assembled, the Sandtrooper (Squad Leader: Tatooine) looks perfect and it is clear that this figure makes Sideshow proud. They certainly did a great job on this figure from head to toe.
But with everything great, there always seems to be room for constructive criticism. And we will offer ours here. Sideshow didn't do that much to change up the final result of the weathered armor that much (when compared to the sergeant). The dirt pattern is definitely slightly different from the sergeant, but we believe that only owners of both pieces or keenly eyed enthusiasts would notice the few fine differences. The sandtrooper still has a yellowed look on his armor which is mildly distracting but actually an interesting interpretation of what was seen in the film. It is our opinion that the shade of the armor remained white but was peppered heavily with a black dirt all over. However, the Sideshow figures have yellowed armor with brown streaky dirt. Whereas the film sandtroopers had their weathering details in a speckled fashion, the 1:6 Scale Figures look more like they were mud-slung instead. This is necessarily a complaint, but for a figure that is over $100, we wished that it would have been as movie-accurate as possible. It is our opinion that Sideshow has the capability to give us our definitive 1:6 Scale Figures. But in order for this to happen, a little more research may be needed on their part to ensure that the best paint decos and applications are applied. Limited to a total of 3500 pieces, there is no exclusive version for this level of Imperial soldier. Well worth the price, the Sandtrooper (Squad Leader: Tatooine) is a wonderful addition to the Militaries Of Star Wars line, but we hope Sideshow will put characters from Episode IV on hold for a while and focus on Imperials from Episode V. Something in our gut tells us that this may just be on tap!
(Squad Leader: Tatooine)
Announcement Date: TBD
Pre-order Date: TBD
(Squad Leader: Tatooine) is a repaint of 2009's Sandtrooper (Sergeant: Tatooine) 1:6 Scale Figure which utilizes the Armored body type.
Articulation Count: 31 points
Articulation Details: ball-socket head, ball-jointed neck, double ball-jointed shoulders, double ball-jointed elbows, double ball-jointed wrists, double ball-jointed torso, ball-jointed waist, ball-jointed hips, swivel upper thighs, double ball-jointed knees, 2 swivel shins, 2 ball-jointed ankles, 2 swivel feet
Accessory Count: TBD
Accessory Details: fully detailed sandtrooper armor set featuring: helmet faceplate, left shin armor, abdomen armor, and pauldron with orange rank designation, bodysuit, shoulder pouches, belt pouches, T-21 light repeating blaster, detailed backpack, display base with Star Wars logo (3 parts)
Sideshow Exclusive: N/A
Retail: $109.99 USD
Market Value: Click here to check the latest prices based on listings.