REVIEW: Sideshow 1:6 DELUXE CLONE TROOPER (212th ATTACK BATTALION)
Awesome Army-Builder For Your 12-Inch Collection...
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I love Clone Troopers. Packing way more personality than their bland later-saga Stormtrooper cousins, the Clone Troopers stood out with unique outfits and bold armor color. I've collected quite few of the soldiers in Hasbro's 3 3/4" scale, the orange striped "Utapau" Clone Troopers being my all-time favorites. Great color scheme aside, it was the fact that they were led by the ultra-cool Commander Cody that solidified my love of the 212th Attack Battalion.
Sideshow has been on a 1:6th scale Clone Trooper roll for many years now, my first purchase being - you guessed it - Commander Cody. While more expensive to amass than Hasbro's smaller figures, my attraction to the 212th Attack Battalion gave me a firm focus on what larger Clone Troopers to collect. Cody was a solid start, but when Sideshow announced a new Deluxe Clone Trooper assortment starring infantry from the 212th, it had to be mine. Everyone has their favorite Clone Troopers, so Sideshow is offering a variety of different army-building Deluxe Clones to choose from. In addition to 212th, fans can collect "Shiny" (pristine white armor), "Veteran" (battle-worn white armor), and "Vader's Fist", the blue striped 501st Legion. All four Deluxe Clone Troopers are currently in-stock through Sideshow, each priced at the attractive 1:6th scale price of $139.99.
Packaging for the 212th Deluxe Clone Trooper is a shoe box-type affair with a magnetically shut front panel. Dynamic photos of the figure adorn all sides of the box and opening the flap provides a great view of the figure and most of his included gear. Sideshow went with a very streamline approach to the packaging; the compact design ideal for shipping, storage and opening.
Like most all 12-inch releases, the figure slides out on a plastic tray from the top of the box, perfect for future storage. Multiple stacked trays (two) are used to hold the Deluxe Trooper and all his gear, again a very smart and compact design. At first glance I didn't think the figure came with all that much, but after pulling apart the layers I saw that Sideshow did indeed equip this Trooper well.
All of Sideshow's 1:6th scale Clone Trooper releases have shipped with a good amount of gear, but these new Deluxe Troopers are specially created with army-building (and a variety of display options) in mind. This may not be a famous Clone Trooper like Commander Cody, but with the abundance of gear at your disposal, you can help shape him into a soldier worthy of battle legends. Starting at the head, fans have a choice of Phase 1 or Phase 2 helmets. Both have a cool distinctive sci-fi vibe to them, but my money is on the later Phase 2 look. I love how closely it resembles a Stormtrooper helmet; more rugged and bulkier than the sleek finned Phase 1. If you can't decide, swapping out the Clone helmets is literally a snap, each popping on and off with ease on a nice solid ball-joint.
The next crucial step in designing your Clone Trooper is deciding on how to arm him. We've all seen the standard issue DC-15A Blaster Rifle and DC-15S Blaster Carbine before, as Sideshow has included these two weapons with every Clone Trooper release. Cool guns, for sure, but it is the unique inclusion of the Z-6 Rotary Blaster cannon that has my attention. A chaingun of the future, this multi-barreled laser blaster looks killer in the grip of the Deluxe Trooper. The Clone actually includes two specially sculpted hands just for the cause: one to grasp the firing handle and the other to support the gun by a handle. Unfortunately there is no cool-looking belt-fed strand of bullets, the one downside of advanced laser technology.
The 212th Deluxe Clone Trooper also packs a punch with four (4) Droid Popper Grenades, each featuring a slightly bluish tint and fitting snug in the two included grenade-gripping hands. Other swappable hand gestures include additional left and right trigger grips (for the Blaster Rifle and Carbine), pointing (one and two fingers), thumbs up, fisted, and open (for a salute or karate chop). That's a grand total of thirteen (13) interchangeable hands, each easily swapped with solid posts and firm wrist sockets.
Also included is an opening backpack with fabric cover. To attach, simply loop the straps over the Clone Trooper's shoulders and position it into place. Strong concealed magnets insure that the backpack will never fall off - a very nice touch. While mostly for looks, the fabric cover on the backpack can open up to hold a few items, such as the Droid Popper Grenades or even some extra hands. You can even get the DC-15A Blaster Rifle mostly in there for a backup weapon. That actually brings me to my one big criticism on this figure - there's no place to stow the unused guns and grenades (other than the backpack). A carrying strap on the carbine or even the use of more concealed magnets would have gone a long way in allowing you to fully kit up your Trooper.
Lastly, Sideshow includes a display stand and a set of boots for "Trooper action". This pair is sculpted bent to help display your Clone in a running or kneeling position. I prefer not to bother with them, but your mileage may vary. The display stand is one of the now standard crotch-hugging variety, which is excellent, but really not needed except for prolonged shelf display.
Building an army of 12-inch Clone Troopers isn't an affordable reality for many collectors. Many fans will be content in grabbing their favorite heroes - such as Commander Cody - and calling it a day. But for those that do have the extra cash or simply really like one particular Clone Trooper unit (like the awesome 212th Attack Battalion), then Sideshow's new 1:6th scale Deluxe Clone Troopers are where it's at. $139.99 isn't bad at all for a 12-inch action figure, in fact it's almost unheard of nowadays. Tack on incredibly sculpted armor, a slew of weapons and accessories and a tight, fully articulated figure body and you have yourself one heck of a deal. Posed together with Commander Cody, my 212th Attack Battalion Clone Trooper looks amazing on display - Z-6 Rotary Blaster at the ready.
Review and Photos by Jeff Saylor
Review Sample Courtesy of Sideshow Collectibles
Last edited by JeffSaylor; 06-26-2014 at 04:29 PM.