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LEGO’s Kessel Run Millennium Falcon Comes Loaded for Play (Toy Review)

Warning: It is possible that this toy contains minor spoilers for the movie Solo: A Star Wars Story!

Every kid has known since 1978 that the Millennium Falcon is the best Star Wars toy, largely because it doubles as a playset and an attack vehicle. So with a new Han Solo movie coming out, a new Falcon was a must. And here it is, in strange new colors and a slightly different shape. But just as the original Star Wars line shrunk action figures in order to increase play features with them, decreasing shelf space and higher prices are making it so you sometimes have to go down to LEGO size to get something resembling movie-accurate play scenes.

LEGO sent us the new Solo: A Star Wars Story Falcon for review, so let’s check it out! First, you may notice some new characters…

You probably already know Emilia Clarke’s Qi’ra; the droid is DD-BD, which sounds like something Buck Rogers‘ Twiki would say. He looks to be the body of an R5 astromech with “Gonk” Power Droid-ish legs. The hooded character is Quay Tolsite, who seems to be the same species as antagonist Moloch, though the instruction booklet shows him on the side of the good guys in a firefight against LEGO stormtroopers. Red guy is a Kessel Operations Droid, and as Threepio told us in A New Hope, spice mines are the most famous operations in those parts, which may explain why he looks red hot.

One of the things that distinguishes LEGO from all its competitors is that the designers have actual engineering skill; while the copycats focus all their energies on a cool exterior, LEGO sets usually have a strong framework in place first. See above for all the criss-crossing brick work you won’t see in the final model, because it’s well-concealed.

The individual bags numbered in order of need are also a plus. If you have to pause at any point, it means some pieces still remain bagged.

Like previous Falcons in this size, there are some cheats for scale to keep it more affordable than the $800 in-scale model; also like prior versions, it opens up with a series of triangular panels. Unlike those versions, the interior is divided into quadrants, though they do all connect through archways. You may notice the radar dish is on a double ball-joint for multiple positions.

First, there’s this bulkhead room. Not much in there; again, like with most Falcon toys, there isn’t a passage to the cockpit. (The eternal frustration!)

Then the hyperdrive/storage room, where containers hold a light, and…whatever that white thing Chewie is holding. Let us know in comments if you figure out what that is.

Lando’s quarters include his bunk (only single-wide here, because this set is family friendly) and a bar, because if you’re Lando, why not have your own space-bar?

Finally, there’s the main computer and Dejarik table room. The seats curve thanks to hinged connectors that are then held in place by studs between the joints.

To access the cockpit, you have to pull off the canopy. Inside, you’ll see two seats staggered slightly so Han and Chewie can sit side by side and not have to fight for arm space. Oh, and there’s a coffee maker behind them. Or a space beverage machine. They probably don’t call it coffee, but it sure looks like a Keurig from far, far away.

If you’re wondering why the front of the Falcon looks different, LEGO would seem to be confirming the rumor that there’s an escape pod upfront.

It fits a figure inside, with its double-hinge canopy.

Behind the pod, there’s a smuggling compartment that can hide a minifig or two.

And on either side, push-button missiles. They’re actually spring-loaded rather than ball/pop-socket, so be careful.

While the cannon on top rotates and swivels, you can also open it up and remove the gunner station, to fit figures inside at the proper firing positions. For play scenarios, this could also allow you to approximate the “Lando-vator” seen at the end of Empire.

You probably won’t ever look at the underneath; with non-retractable landing gear, this is only meant to be displayed one way. But if you do, there’s an articulated gun turret on the bottom too.

In another “pointless-but-cool” addition, the on-ramp does hinge open, but the Falcon isn’t high enough for a figure to actually board through it unless they lie down and squeeze.

You’re looking at around $170 for this Falcon, but compared to Hasbro’s, which is $99.99 and comes with just one figure and very little interior, that’s not bad (compared to the $800 LEGO Ultimate Collector Falcon, it’s a damn steal). Plus it packs a lot of play features in, with the gunner station, escape pod, missiles, and opening segments. It took me two days to build (by comparison, the Destiny’s Bounty boat from The LEGO Ninjago Movie took a week), and because the ship is asymmetrical, none of it every felt boring or repetitive and nothing about it was frustrating or tough to hold in place. You can build it in a day if you have the whole day pretty much free.

Homer Simpson is not included. But build a bar in anything, and he finds it!

We’d say this toy is no hunk of junk, and has got it where it counts. Will you be picking one up on your next Kessel toy run? Let us know in comments.

Images: Luke Y. Thompson

Luke Y. Thompson is Nerdist’s Weekend Editor, and lives for toys. Talk plastic with him on Twitter @LYTrules

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