One of this year’s most anticipated LEGO kits was first announced way back in April, bringing the iconic 501st Clone Trooper legion from Star Wars to brick-built form. After flying off the shelves when it launched back at the beginning of September, we’re diving into our review of the new Clone Wars era kit to see how it stacks up. Head below for a closer look at the LEGO 501st Battle Pack and its impressive selection of Clone Trooper minifigures.
Hands-on with the LEGO 501st Battle Pack
The latest Star Wars set out of the Clone Wars era is giving LEGO fans a chance to finally build an army of 501st Clone Troopers. To say it’s been an insanely popular set has been a bit of an understatement, given how it’s just now in stock after being sold out since the beginning of the month. And even though it’s directly marketed as a battle pack, fans have clearly recognized that it’s perfect army building set.
What’s all included
Assembled out of 285 pieces, the LEGO 501st Clone Battle Pack lives up to its name by including four of the blue and white troopers alongside a pair of Battle Droids. The main things you’ll be assembling are two minifigure-scale vehicles from the Clone Wars in the form of a Scout Walker and speeder bike.
Both of the builds included here are actually pretty detailed for the size of the set and manage to pack in some interesting techniques that bring the on-screen counterparts to life. Both come decked out with blue accenting to match the included minifigures and give the LEGO battle pack that true 501st Clone Trooper aesthetic.
A lot of the detailing also comes from stickers here, which is more to less to be expected from this point. The set will still look just fine if you decide not to apply them, but it would have been nice to get some printed bricks for the Scout Walker’s cockpit area, at least. But that’s a pretty minor gripe in the grand scheme of things here.
A great set, but not perfect
As great of a set as this LEGO battle pack is for finally assembling some 501st Clone Troopers, there is one aspect that may end up driving away older collectors. Even with battle packs being geared more towards the minifigures anyway, the vehicles aren’t the best. Don’t get me wrong, the builds are solid, but they’re just way too big for the source material.
The speeder bike isn’t too far off, but the Scout Walker is almost comically large. I know it’s weird to be saying that the final build is bigger than it should be, but more hardcore Star Wars collectors will surely notice accuracy issues. Certainly, this isn’t a deal-breaker, but it’s worth pointing out. But with that aside, we can dive into the real star of the show here.
All about the LEGO 501st Clones
It might not be a battle pack by name, but LEGO knows exactly what fans want out of a set like this, and it’s the minifigures. And this time around, LEGO certainly hasn’t disappointed with its 501st Clone Battle Pack. Across the board, you’re getting four total Clone Troopers with three of the standard 501st variant and then the final Jet Trooper version. All four of them also come with the refreshed head that more accurately depicts the Jango Fett-styled look you’d expect from the Clone Wars. This is a small tweak, but it’s a great departure from what we’ve seen up until now.
But with the minifigures themselves, we’ll start with the standard 501st Clone Troopers included in the LEGO battle pack. All three sport the same design, and boy is it eye-catching. These are easily some of the most detailed minifigs of the year and do a phenomenal job capturing the source material.
The Jet Trooper on the other hand carries over much of the same eye-catching detailing, but with some extra flair thrown in. There are blue arms here instead of the white on the standard figures, as well as extra insignias and printing throughout the character.
There are also two Battle Droids, but they’ve been the same since first debuting in the Star Wars theme over 20-years ago.
Entering with the $29.99 price tag, the 501st Clone Battle Pack is a really solid value. The 285 pieces are misleading just from the stats alone, as the four minifigures easily make up for the lower cost per brick ratio here. Not the mention the usual Star Wars tax that should be accounted for as well.
How does it compare to other Star Wars sets?
But when you compare the LEGO 501st Clone Battle Pack to other sets in the Star Wars theme, does it hold up as well? Absolutely. Sure $30 goes a pretty long way these days in the LEGO world, but I don’t think there’s as solid of a set as this one for minifigure fans. BrickHeadz might be better for adding a little pop of LEGO to your desk, but the 501st Clone Battle Pack is a better overall set from LEGO.
At the end of the day, fans of the Clone Wars are going to have a hard time passing this one up. The LEGO 501st Clone Battle Pack is easily going to be one of the best kits of the year, with the final build really speaking for itself. It might not be quite as display-worthy for collectors as other Star Wars kits, but the included minifigures are pretty fantastic.
LEGO fans like myself are also likely to have plenty of nostalgia for the Clone Trooper Scout Walker that’s included here. As a kid, I remember having quite a few of the original versions of this kit that came out back in the early 2000s and assembling the new version here definitely brought some of that to the table. Even without that though,
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