This is my tenth Lego set, which is also my fourth within the Star Wars theme/collection.
Official Page: Lego.com
Brick Instructions: Link
Pieces: 927, 226 unique parts & 18 rare
Mini Figures: 4
Age group: 9 – 14
Date assembled: 22 February 2015
Assembly duration: 1.5 hour
Main steps: 63
Total steps (includes repetitions & sub-components): 366
Selection & Theme
A short four-day gap existed between the acquisition and assembly of this Lego set (Jedi Defender-Class Cruiser) and the previous one – Wookiee Gunship. The selection was not 100% intentional, but the Lego product identification and numbering reflects the fact that the two sets were issued out sequentially. Interestingly, as of mid 2015 (the time of writing this review – some four months later) this set has been retired! This is the first Lego set that I have owned in this 2015-era of my hobby where a set is now no longer on the market as being generally available. Technically, this retired status should increase the value of the set since it is now a limited edition set. Only time will see whether and how it appreciates in value. It should be noted that, thus far, my interest in Lego has been for personal consumption and collection purposes; it is not my intention to be pursuing Lego sets for trading, which is a whole other endeavour. The Jedi defender-class Cruiser set is also part of the sub-theme of The Old Republic, which is the first within this classification.
Official Description (Lego.com)
Board the Jedi Defender-class Cruiser and travel to the worlds of the Old Republic in true Jedi style! This fantastic model from the early Star Wars universe features tons of great details, including front hatches with holocron storage, cockpit access, 2 ejecting escape pods, rear compartment, holocrons, retractable landing gear, 4 rotating flick missiles and a lifting handle. Includes 4 mini-figures with weapons: Jedi Knight, Jedi Consular, Sith warrior and a Sith trooper.
Spread over two booklets and six bags of bricks, the first bag assembles the base of the cruiser, plus the two Sith characters – warrior and trooper. A holocron crate is also assembled up-front. The base itself features bright red brick pieces which are a stark contrast to the deeper maroon shade of bricks that create the distinctive exterior colour of the set as a whole. A number of long technic bricks form the rectangular base, with a double-width angled lever protruding the centre of the structure. Two sets of prongs are aligned perpendicular to the main craft, signifying where the two escape pods are to be attached later. On the base, four legs are created such that they swivel inwards to tuck away during take-off and flight. The entire bag of brick pieces are utilised across 23 steps.
The second bag builds upon the main structure to flesh out the rear compartment walls and second layer of definition. Extending out from the rear compartment are the wings, that are built up to define the slanted roof exterior. Steps 35 and 36 construct two hatches which combine to form the exterior doorway of the rear compartment where the holocron crate is stored. Two axle pieces are added and snapped into place, each running parallel to the rear compartment.
Bag #3 constructs two mirror-image compartment/sections to the cruiser which form the front left and right sections of the cruiser. The two sections are mirror reflections in structure only so far as the top layer where each section is uniquely customised such that the right-side section has a radar attached, By the end of bag #3, we have reached Step 42 in the main sequence.
Bag #4 defines the complete front section of the cruiser, which slowly takes form and is separated into three distinct areas. To this front section, the underneath has a controlled positioned trapdoor. At Step #43, the front section is joined to the main ship and kept connected by the insertion of a new fixed middle roofing. To round out the first booklet of instructions, a second holocron crate is assembled and added into the front middle section.
In comparison to the first booklet, the second booklet is noticeably thinner; the instructions here relate to the final two bags of pieces. The two Jedi mini-figures are first assembled before the construction of the cruiser continues. The first priority is to add square exterior plates which are attached to the rear-facing sections of the front compartment, forming an angled exterior look. At Step #48 the exterior gun embankments are added to each left/right side. Two exterior sections are designed in mirror-image fashion to provide a more intricate look and feel to the front of the cruiser. At Step #51, the large flat triangular pieces are utilised to cover and enclose the central section of the cruiser, each adding key definition to the overall size, look and outline of the Lego set. The final exterior covering of the front section is added; each being assembled as mirror-image reflections of each other. To complete the front section. each left and right laser gun is added to the ship.
The final sixth bag completes the Lego set such that a small gun is added to the centre of the unit,,, Two escape pods are constructed, first as simple base structures that sit atop each of the left and right areas. Each pod has a separate roof covering, which is easily detachable to allow access for adding the Jedi/Sith into each compartment as necessary. One final assembly is required for a round covering of the cruiser, positioned central to each of the escape pods. The finishing touches are the two engines, which are affixed to the model via the long axles.
An extra 301 additional steps were counted to increase the 63 main steps to a total of 366 actions taken to fully assemble this Lego set. This is a 581% increase, which signifies a very detailed level of complexity. This 5-fold factor makes the 63 main steps seem relatively simple in comparison and masks the true detail and total steps/duration that the entire set requires.
As one of the more modern adaptations of something from Star Wars: The Old Republic (SWTOR), this set is a very nice set. The playability of the set is enhanced by three elements:
- Handle/lever for holding and suspending the set during play simulations of flight.
- The high number of detachable modules – the escape pods, roof lids and swivel hatch doors of the rear compartment
- The accessibility to inside modules – the escape pods themselves and also the three front sections of the cruiser.
Overall, this is a high-demand Lego set. The unique mini-figures further appeals to both Star Wars fans who may want the set in its entirety, or have targeted the set acquisition for the sole purpose of obtaining these unique nameless characters.