When it comes to intimidating faceless legions for an evil army, none come close to the Stormtroopers. There’s just something a little unnerving about that sleek white body armor and menacing helmet. The design has proven so timeless that The Force Awakens costumers only opted to tweak it instead of a massive makeover. Sometimes the classics just work.
Knowing army builders wouldn’t be satisfied with slowly stocking their ranks, Hot Toys released a two-pack Stormtroopers set. If nothing else I needed two to flank Darth Vader, but I’ve got a sneaky suspicion I’ll eventually find a way to add some more to my Stormtrooper army of 2.
Packaging: Hot Toys has a simple outer package for this line. The Stormtrooper set seems even more understated since it doesn’t really showcase both Stormtroopers. This Star Wars exterior might not be my favorite, but it’s streamlined flat and shiny black does have a more elegant look to it than some of the busier Hot Toys packaging.
The interior packaging features a more stylized picture, which I liked so much I wished Hot Toys went this route with the exterior package for the entire line.
Likeness: I’ve amassed a ridiculous number of Star Wars Black Stormtroopers so it was pretty cool to see all the details and separate armor plating done in a more movie-accurate style. The iconic helmet is done beautifully. The mouth piece is the area that gives the helmet that special little oomph of intimidation and it looks great here in complimenting the flat, black eyes.
While a Star Wars fan from as long as I can remember, I never noticed the Stormtroopers have different pieces at their knees. The right knee has suit systems power cells while the left has a sniper position protector plate. That tidbit comes courtesy of the Star Wars: Complete Visual Dictionary.
Scale: To add a little fun to the set and offer another display option, the Stormtroopers are different heights. One being a Han Solo appropriate size while the other is favors the little short for a Stormtrooper Luke Skywalker. And they’re all looking up at Chewbacca.
Paint: Since the bulk of the Stormtrooper is covered in armor, there’s not a lot of paint demands here. The armor is made of a nice glossy white and catches light very well. Most of the paint is utilized with the various buttons on the torso and the vents and slots along the helmet. As you’d expect with Hot Toys, the paint job is on point without any issues on either Stormtrooper.
Outfit: Underneath that shiny armor is a black spandex material, which is loose enough to allow for easy posing. Just as important, the black material matches the black straps connecting the armor so you won’t see them unless you look very closely.
Articulation: There’s a certain lack of functionality with the Stormtroopers armor in general and that’s carried over with the figures. They can only raise their arms up but so high so an effective surrender pose won’t really work. Ditto for a great kneeling pose thanks to the thigh armor piece.
I didn’t have any problems striking a more traditional Stormtrooper pose whether holding the blaster with two hands or at attention. That’s the one downside to the individual armor pieces, but I’m comfortable with that compromise.
Accessories: Both Stormtroopers come with a blaster rifle and pistol. The pistol fits in the accompanying holster. Each fit securely in the weapon holding hands so there’s no annoying issue with constantly having the weapon droop or fall out all together.
I love the detailing on the blasters. They have a real complexity to them and aren’t just generic blasters. In this scale, Hot Toys is able to show all the various details companies like Hasbro just aren’t able to on the 6” scale. And I love the use of the gunmetal paint here.
The thermal detonator that clips along the belt is one of those pesky constantly falling off accessories. It doesn’t take movement to fly off and is one you’re going to get accustomed to the familiar sound of it falling. I’ll probably very carefully glue it on to prevent the constant drop problem.
As usual there’s a nice array of hands. There’s the fists, relaxed palms and one gesturing left palm. I’d love for Hot Toys to include the hand pegs on each of the hands. Keeping the peg in the arm is trickier with the armor sliding up.
The set offers a couple of bonus items over the single releases. First is the larger heavy blaster rifle and stand. Even cooler though is the mouse droid so you can now have Chewbacca growl and roll it in the other direction thanks to its workable wheels.
Hot Toys does a great job stabilizing its figures so the stands aren’t really necessary. I found them pretty useful as a shield though.
Worth it? It’s kind of hard to have a Star Wars collection worth anything without at least a pair of Stormtroopers. Getting a set now though is going to cost you in the neighborhood of at least $450. I grabbed the set for around $400, which is better than the regular Hot Toys price for two figures.
And as usual with a Hot Toys product, you absolutely don’t want to experience sold out remorse and end up paying twice as much once it’s sold out and your only bet is the marked up secondary market.
Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Where to get it? The best route is probably eBay. Sellers there tend to be a bit more realistic there and you can get a pretty reasonable rate if you stalk long enough.