Too little, too late

Hasbro’s long-awaited “Legacy Collection” Millennium Falcon toy (known to Star Wars collectors like myself as the “BMF”) has finally arrived on the shelves of our local Toys ‘R’ Us, which means there’s finally one in my collection!

There was only one on the shelves when I bought it, and I wasn’t about to wait until I could come back with my wife’s car this time… so I actually brought it home on the back of my bike!

Contrary to reports to the contrary, however, it sucks.

Obviously, scale matters as little to Hasbro as it did 30 years ago, since this new Falcon toy has all the same problems the original toy had:

– the ship’s less than half the size it should be, and the proportions are all wrong

– accuracy has been deliberately compromised to accommodate “play features”

– the cockpit’s comically oversized, giving the ship a “super-deformed” profile

– the rectenna dish is pathetically undersized

– the boarding ramp is absurdly steep, because the ship sits much too high on its “landing gear”

– the cockpit access tube is missing

– the lower gunner station is non-existent

– the interiors are grossly out-of-scale, and too small to fit the figures properly

Oh, it’s an improvement over the original Kenner toy from the ’70s, assuredly, but not by much… and it also costs nearly ten times as much.  I’m quite happy with it myself, though, ’cause it suits my super-deformed “Kubrick” Star Wars figures perfectly!

Ironically enough, what Hasbro again failed to do — produce a Millennium Falcon to scale with their action figure line — had already been done by Attakus, a French company that produces limited-edition metal dioramas.  While it’s ridiculously heavy and expensive, it shows how accurate and detailed a 1:18th Falcon could’ve been

…whereas the only room that’s properly scaled to the action figures here is the upper gunner station.  It’s not the right shape, exactly, but it looks pretty good when lit from above, and it fits the pack-in Han Solo figure well.

If only they’d included a second gunwell for Luke this time…


11 Responses to Too little, too late

  1. pagz says:

    Seriously bro, I know you’r way into scale, but you can’t seriously expect Hasbro to build a scale Falcon right? Tell me you understand the need for comrpomise on this one. Honestly, I love my BMF. the interior looks way better than the old on, the cockpit actually fits the characters, the entry ramp lowers and lights up.

    I mean sure, we’d all love to have a scale falcon, but we’re not their target audience. and even if we were they could never sell enough to make it cost effective. A scale falcon would be huge, and the BMF is already a staggering $200 bucks. We’re talking highest of the high end of the scale for play environments here. This is not an impulse by, this is a christmas or birthday present. If the kid is really lucky.

    The link for the scale Falcon stuff you posted is $3600 bucks! for not even half the fucking ship! Even if it were made out of plastic this thing would still be retardedly expensive and huge.

    So, taking into account the fact that Hasbro has to balance concerns of scale and accuracy with price, playability and target market, how would you rate the BMF?

  2. tekering says:

    How do I rate the BMF? It’s a misguided failure at best, and a cowardly insult at worst. There was no need for compromise here; you’re still judging Star Wars toys based on the Kenner model, not the Hasbro one. Remember what Hasbro was doing back when Kenner had the Star Wars license?

    Growing up in the ’80s, Kenner was the company making compromises — their TIE Fighter, X-Wing, Y-Wing, Imperial Shuttle, and AT-AT were all half the size they should’ve been, and as inaccurate in proportion as they were in scale. At the same time, Hasbro was still producing G.I. Joe vehicles for their twelve-inch figures! When Kenner was producing Mini-Rigs, Hasbro was producing the U.S.S. Flagg; as Kenner released M.A.S.K. figures (under 3 inches tall), Hasbro released Fortress Maximus (nearly 3ft. tall); while Kenner simply recycled Star Wars toys for the Robin Hood line, Hasbro produced the massive Space Shuttle Defiant. Compromise was never the Hasbro mandate, and since taking over the Star Wars license, they’ve produced completely new scale-accurate versions of the X-Wing, the TIE Fighter, the Landspeeder (and now the Rancor, too!). Was it too much to expect them to show the same respect for the Millennium Falcon? The full-sized Elstree studio set Falcon prop was 80ft. long — a full-sized 1:18th scale reproduction would be 4ft. long. Is that really too much to ask from the same company that gave us the U.S.S. Flagg, at 7 1/2ft.?

    It’s outrageous to have to pay nearly ten times what the Kenner Falcon originally cost, just to get a toy with all the same problems. Take out the electronic bells and whistles, the absurd missiles and the mini-fighter (and the completely unnecessary Han and Chewie repacks), and a scale-accurate Falcon could be produced at the same cost as the BMF. The only reason the Attakus 1:18th scale diorama is “retardedly expensive” is because it’s made of metal, the only way another company could get around Hasbro’s stranglehold on the 1:18th scale license! Hasbro is, unfortunately, the only company in a legal position to produce affordable Star Wars toys at 1:18th scale; by refusing to do it themselves, they also prevent anyone else from doing so.

    And even if I allowed for the necessity of another smaller-scale toy (in a market already flooded with smaller-scale toy Falcons, including all three earlier Hasbro retools of the Kenner mold, their “Galactic Heroes” Falcon, the Titanium series deluxe version, and the Star Wars Transformers version), there’s still no justification for the grossly inaccurate proportions. Even when Hasbro compromises with scale (as they’ve done with the Republic Gunship, the Attack Shuttle, and the Sith Infiltrator, for instance), they still retain the proper shape of the ships. Of the new and original sculpts Hasbro has produced for past decade of Star Wars toys, the BMF is undoubtably the least accurate of any of them. That, more than anything else, I cannot forgive.

    Oh, and if I could get one of the Attakus Millennium Falcon dioramas for $3400, I’d jump at the chance. Unfortunately, I can’t get one here for less than $5000 — the disadvantage of living on the opposite side of the world from where they’re manufactured.

  3. pagz says:

    I gotta say bro, I find it really funny that you bring up the FLAGG in an arguement about scale 😉

    Don’t get me wrong, it’s a valid point, but if I recall the FLAGG was not what one would call a rousing success for Hasbro, nor was it a particularly intricate or complex mold. I think I knew 1 kid who had the FLAGG when it was new, and he was obscenely rich and spoiled. The FLAGG was certainly well beyond anything I could ever hope to get when I was a kid.

    I’ve been thinking it over a lot and I think I have the solution. What Hasbro needs to do is release the Falcon in pieces. Playsets that can be used on their own, but which can be combined to form the full Falcon. Perhaps the divisions could go rear section with gun wells that could encompass the engines, that rom where Lando went up on to the Falcon to save Luke and the gun turrets. The second Set could be the Boarding ramp and in flight lounge, then a thrid set for the cockpit and tunnel. Just off the top of my head. For the market as it stands today, thats the only way I can see a scale Falcon working.

    On a completely unrelated note, we had another toy show on Sunday, and I am now the happy owner of an Imperuial Shttle and the old Death Star playset with trash compactor.

  4. Rick says:

    I remember receiving my first falcon back…damn nearly 30 years ago, at that time, I was thinking “What the hell is this godawful thing suppose to be?”. Though I finally accepted the grotesque monstrosity for what it was suppose to be. Finally someone to tell it like it is. You go Mark! LOL

  5. Mark B says:

    I think Mark Boudreaux did a really fantastic job on this new Falcon, and it goes without saying that it blows the original 1970’s and early 80’s versions out of the water. I was crying out for a bigger better Falcon for many years and this one makes my dream come true.

    With the old Falcon you could’nt really create many scenes from the movies, and you could only fit about two figures into the smuggling compartments. You also could’nt stand up any figures in the cockpit, so while it was great for its time, its very limited, comparison to this new one.

    Sure the cockpit is a little oversized, but if the rest of the falcon was in proportion to the cockpit it would be even bigger. I don’nt think many people would be able to fit a scale 3.75″ Falcon in their house. As it is I only have barely enough room for it on my shelves, and if it was any bigger it would just be impossible to fit in my room.

    The only real complaint I have with this new Falcon is that most of the back section is taken up with electronics and what not. I just wish that the back part would open up to accommodate more action figures. Maybe thats where customizing might come in. I don’nt if Hasbro would make another updated version in the futre with the back opening up, but I’m not holding my breath.

    The Attakus Falcon looks great, but I would’nt pay 3,000 for only half a ship.

  6. apherg says:

    well, it is way underscale. But there was no chance Hasbro could make it to scale. It would be about double the size in all 3 dimensions. So imagine how huge the box would be. As it is it weighs about 15 pounds. A double size one would weigh probably over 50, even with every weight saving measure possible, taken.

    And the Flagg was huge but it wasn’t even remotely close to scale with the Joe figures. The Falcon is closer to scale than the Flagg.

    And the X-wing is not close to scale either. I’m talking about the bigger retooled one. It’s about 1/24 scale, 2/3 the size it should be to be 1/18. The only star wars vehicles that are scale are the various TIE’s and the snowspeeder and luke’s landspeeder. Most the rest is underscale. It’s a fact of toy life.

  7. Scale is a first world problem for a first world hobby. I hadn’t collected star wars since the Kenner days, until this Falcon was being released. Probably 25 years.. Sure it’s not perfect, but the detail is there. I was between jobs when this thing came out and put it on “lay-buy” that week! I was nowhere near disappointed and honestly, this is the only negative review I’ve seen in the 5 years since. You make some valid points, but practicality, playability and overall cost of a toy will take precedence every time. For my money it’s a fine effort and it takes pride of place attached vertically to my display room wall.

  8. mffanrodders says:

    What did you make of Hasro’s “Hero” Series Falcon?

    It seems quite highly regarded by modellers, but not so much by toy collectors.

    • tekering says:

      The so-called “Hero Series” is an odd duck, isn’t it? There’s no consistent scale to the vehicles released, and no play features whatsoever, yet they’re not detailed or accurate enough to make decent display models, either. Yet another half-assed attempt by Hasbro, neither here nor there.

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