I decided I wanted this kit the last time I watched The Force Awakens, saw Finn's trooper buddy get gunned down by Poe Dameron... re-watch the scene if that's a surprise!... and smear those now-iconic blood streaks onto Finn's helmet. Since I'm well aware of the high quality of Bandai's model kits from my experience building Gundams, I figured that this one would make for a good project. Happily, I was right.
Bandai's attention to detail when designing kits is on full display here. The high-gloss white plastic nicely replicates the sheen of a stormtrooper's "plastoid" armor. Subtle detail like the clasps for holding pieces of the armor together, the ribbing on the body glove (unique to the First Order version of the stormtrooper), and knobs on the rifle's scope are all to be found. Instructions, though written in Japanese, are clear, and the build is quick and easy. You get some options: there are open hands, fists, and hands with trigger fingers. You can build the blaster rifle in its standard configuration or with extended stock attached. Fans of "TR-8R" from the movie will love the inclusion of the stun baton and riot shield. Curiously absent is an officer's pauldron, a single piece that could have added a dash of color to a straight out of the box build.
Such a build will give you an impressive, ready-for-action soldier, but if you want screen-accuracy, get ready for some detail painting. All the hands and weapons are molded in solid black, but should have a good amount of white highlights on them. Painting white over black was a bit of a pain, but doable with a few coats of craft acrylics. Every area that needs paint is bordered by recessed lines on the parts.
Finn had a bit of trouble standing on his own, but his foot fits firmly into the included base, which took care of the problem. Articulation is great, offering more options for posing than an action figure would, but there's a catch. Flex the arms or legs too much and you'll clearly see that there's no actual arms or legs under the armor! This was a little disappointing, as I originally wanted to pose Finn with his hands grasping his helmet, as if he was about to take it off.
Despite the gripes, building and personalizing this was relaxing and fun. I'll certainly be looking into more Bandai Star Wars kits, and since my Finn may want new trooper buddies... thanks, Poe... I'm glad to see that the cool new variants from Rogue One are on the way!
The face of the First Order is here as a 1/12 scale model kit! The gloss plastic gives the armor that classic shine, and layered parts create an extra realistic appearance. Blaster rifle, stun baton, and riot shield are all included, as is a Star killer Base floor panel for display! Runner x6, Sticker Sheet x2, Manual x1Look for origin of shipment: only items shipped from within North America are being sold by authorized U. S. Retailers. The product box will have a Bluefin warning label, which is proof that you are purchasing an officially licensed band a I product, distributed by its sole and authorized distributor (Bluefin distribution) for the U. S. Markets. This product has been thoroughly tested for safety and meets all North American consumer product safety regulations. The affixed label with the Bluefin distribution logo also entitles the purchaser to product support assistance.