Disclaimer note: I have bought this set with my own money from the local store, paying full price. The Lego Group had no entanglements with the way I aquiered this set and is probably unaware of my existence anyhow. The opinions here are therefore my own; they are not reviewed before being posted here by anyone else but myself.
Box, Instructions, Out-of-the-Box and building experienceThe box art shows the built set and some details (including set number, title, the number of parts, age rating) on the front side and some play features on the back side. It is somewhat slimmer than boxes of sets priced similarly.
After opening the box, spilling its contents on a table and punching the box out of the way, I was left with 5 numbered bags and a rather thick instruction booklet, that does not contain any mistakes or inaccuracies and that has some sort of catalog (at the end) with all minifigures included in the early 2017 wave of Star Wars sets. Seeing that one of those numbered bags had a different print (look at the numbers) than the others kind of triggered my OCD, but once I got past that I started building the actual set. This kept me busy for about 1 hour.
The building process is pretty straight forward. However the high number of gray parts makes it hard to keep building. I found myself more often than not having to compare images of previous steps to see where certain elements should go (and I still missed putting on 2 parts... they don't seem that important tho). Below you can see the spare parts.
Minifigures and accessoriesAs mentioned earlyer, this set contains 5 minifigures: Admiral Raddus, Moroff, R3-S1, an U-wing Pilot and a Stormtrooper. Raddus, Moroff and the astromech are exclusive to this set.
Admiral Raddus is the commanding officer of the Rebel fleet in Rogue one. He is a Mon Calamari, like Admiral Ackbar, however his skin color is different: Ackbar's skin is orange, Raddus' is dark gray (some lore to provide a reason for this: it looks like Raddus was born near the poles of the planet Mon Cala, while Ackbar is from the equatorial region, that's why their skin color differs). While Raddus does not have a lot of on-screen time, I think Lego represented him well in this set with the dark blue suit and the dark gray Ackbar head.
Moroff is the odd one in this set. I didn't notice him when I saw the movie and I don't know much else about him. He is some sort of Yeti-like mercenary, carrying a large backpack, where he can hold his gun and even deploy a bipod for said gun (as depicted on the back side of the box I believe). His head and torso are a single piece that combines the white color of the fur of the creature with dark blueish gray details.
R3-S1 is the astromech droid that helps the pilot fly his Y-wing. There is not much background info about this one here. It is made up of 4 parts: the head, the body and the two legs. Only the body and the head are printed. The print on the former is almost the same as that of R2-D2, only the colors differ (while R2-D2 has a white-and-blue print, this one has a gray-and-silver one). I appreciate the attention to detail here. The head is a final 2x2 brick painted transparent brown, with the typical astromech print, only in orange.
The unnamed pilot has a dark blue flight suit. He looks great but I can't find any source images of rebel pilots in dark blue suits so I don't know how accurate he is. The helmet vizor is printed on his head rather than being a physical vizor (like in the U-wing) and this face has been used in a few sets since 2014. The head is double-sided: smiling or scared. The helmet has a checkered model with yellow stripes.
There is nothing special about the Stromtrooper: he has the same, generic "scared clone" face and a standard blaster. It seems to me that he is completely outgunned, outnumbered and outmatched by his foes, which makes his inclusion in this set more like an afterthought, the easy way of increasing the minifigure-count (and therefore the price).
The last Y-wing set had a princess Leia minifig besides the pilot and droid, this time we get an admiral, a mercenary and a stormtrooper. I understand that this is a Rogue One set, but come on...
The completed modelThis set is quite substantial. Other than the spacecraft itself, there is also a yellow, hovering crane, used by the ground-crew load bombs and spring-loaded missiles on the craft. It is made up of 2 separate sections: the crane itself and a little trailer carying the ordonance.
The Y-wing is, however, the main component of this set. The ship just looks great. While at first it may appear very similar to the previous Y-wing, on closer inspection almost every detail is different. The greebling works well and the sand blue is a nice touch in the color scheme. The engines especially look great although I would love to see the texture of the main part of the engine done in brick rather than stickers.
As a play set this is great. The ship is sturdy enough to be swooshable, it has missiles beneath the cockpit (unfortunately they are nut-that-well placed: if you hold the ship from behind the cockpit, you will surely trigger them). Behind the cockpit, there is a special slot for the astromech. Lego decided to include a bombing bay (a really smart choice IMO), where you can load about 3 of the 4 included bombs. To drop them, you have to spin the black toothed wheel at the back of the ship.
LoreThe Y-wing starfighter was deployed as a fighter-bomber, designed to fight its way to its objective, deliver its payload of high explosives, and fight its way out again. Its weaponry included two laser cannons, two ion cannons, and two proton torpedo launchers. An astromech droid, such as an R2 unit, could be plugged into a socket behind the cockpit to act as a co-pilot and manage the ship's various systems.
The Y-wing was a resilient, well-shielded craft, but was slow and ungainly compared to other Alliance fighters. Its deficiencies were partly compensated for by the heavy proton torpedo load it could carry, and its ability to paralyze craft with ion cannon fire without destroying them, a unique ability until the B-wing starfighter was introduced after the Battle of Yavin. In addition to the Rebel Alliance, many planetary defense forces, mercenaries, and pirates fielded the craft.
The design had many flaws, and required constant maintenance. The Y-wing was originally entirely sheathed in an aerodynamic, elegant fuselage, but its high-maintenance nature led to many aggravated maintenance crews getting fed up with constantly having to remove the superficial hull plating and disposing of it altogether. Due to this, many Y-wings had no hull plating (except on the cockpit), exposing the internals of the main hull. Pilots found that this would lighten the spaceframe and keep components cooler, noticeably boosting performance.
Despite its shortcomings in speed and maneuverability compared to space superiority fighters such as the X-wing (or especially compared to interceptors like the A-wing), the Y-wing was an extremely durable craft, with heavier armor and shielding making it a favorite among some Alliance pilots during the Galactic Civil War. The Y-wing also had a larger torpedo magazine.
The Y-wing was not a sluggish fighter overall, as its speed and agility exceeded that of its intended replacement, the B-wing, but its lack of mobility meant that the Y-wing was not effective as a space superiority fighter. When properly used by such commanders as General Grisserno and Horton Salm, Y-wings would accelerate towards their capital ship targets, relying on their gunners and wingmates in X-wing starfighters and A-wing interceptors to distract enemy fighters and the enemy ships' gunners. This would allow the Y-wings and B-wings to focus their fire on capital ships. This tactic was similar to the A-wing Slash, which involved solely X-wings and A-wings.
You can continue reading the lore on wookipedia: here.
OverallWhile this isn't one of the biggest or technically advanced builds, it has been one of my favourites. The minifigures are brilliantly moulded, printed and will make excellent additions to the Star Wars roster. The ship itself is wonderful. It's a well built and sturdy model and I defy any fan of Star Wars who builds this not to take it for a spin round the living room (when nobody is looking obviously).My only small complaint with this set has to be with the bomb loader crane. It holds absolutely no interest and the brick count used could have been used elsewhere within the set but even from a play-ability point of view, it's not properly functional as the jib only has up and down travel, which wouldn't be quite so bad but then the missiles that it's supposed to pick up are fixed in place with a hinge.Apart from that, this is an excellent set and a worthy addition to any collection.
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