|PRICE:||$100.00 plush shipping|
|NOTES:||A long awaited successor to the MPC/AMT kit|
If you’ve seen any of the original 3 Star Wars movies (episodes IV-VI), or Rogue One, A Star Wars story, you should be familiar with this ship. This was the enormous, seemingly-endless white spacecraft that came flying in over audiences’ heads less than a minute into the original Star Wars in 1977 and featured rather prominently in the other 3 films as well. For all intents and purposes, this is the “aircraft carrier” and force (pardon the pun) projector for the Empire as it seeks to instill order through fear throughout the galaxy. Any real “history” of the Star Destroyer is best left to a Google search if you don’t know much about it. Personally, I find the history of how the craftsmen/magicians at the special effects company Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) conceived and built the models of this gorgeous machine for the films far more interesting than the fictional histories on the various Star Wars fan sites and even at starwars.com.
When I discovered that this kit was going to be released in December of 2016 I immediately submitted my email address to an online hobby shop to be notified as soon as it was available. I have owned two of the original MPC/AMT kit which was originally released in 1980 following the release of the second movie, The Empire Strikes Back. That kit was good for its day and I slapped my first one together within a few days. For a pre-teen boy not concerned with superb fit or accuracy it resembled what I had seen on the movie screen beautifully. Fast forward 25 years and I picked up the kit again and was a bit letdown when comparing it to the all of the resources I’d accumulated over the years on it and other Star Wars vehicles. Detail was seriously lacking and what was there was purely from the imagination of the mold makers at MPC. In addition the fit was sloppy to say the least but I’d seen some folks on sci-fi themed modeling websites who’d used the base kit and turned it into a super-detailed jewel. That was my intention with the second kit but it got shelved because every time I looked at the photos of ILM’s creation or watched the films because I knew that I would be hard-pressed to come close to what I knew the real thing to look like.
This new kit from Zvezda has answered the dreams of those of us who have longed for an accurate, beautifully detailed, and well-fitting representation of the Star Destroyer. Especially after Fine Molds started releasing their kits nearly 15 years ago but somehow never got around to this ship!
At 23 inches long when fully assembled it is significantly larger than the older MPC kit. The box is roughly the size of a medium suitcase and it even comes with a carrying handle! Opening the box reveals six large sprues and seven large individual pieces that comprise the main hull components and are all individually-wrapped. The instructions are in the now commonplace CAD-drawing style and are very easy to follow, despite the fact that both they and the wording on the box are written in Cyrillic only, not a word of English anywhere. The parts count is nowhere as high as say the Fine Molds Millennium Falcon (800+) owing to the design of the ship and the scale but is significantly more than the MPC kit. It’s apparent that Zvezda may have had one of ILM’s models as their source because even some of the finer details match what was on the original. I should mention at the stage that the kit is supposedly based on the “Star Destroyer Mark I” as seen in the original Star Wars movie. This is what was referred to by ILM as their 3-foot model and differs in a number of details from the 8-foot model (the “Mark II”) as seen in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Looking at photos of the two ships draws out the differences, mostly in the superstructure, the engines, and the detail between the upper and lower hulls. That said, the details in the kit are more than sufficient for a two-foot mass produced kit. One could add additional details but you’d be hard pressed to find open space in the already detailed pieces.
The kit comes with a stand consisting of two x-shaped cross beams mounted on small bases, one for the aft end and one for the forward. Their positioning is up to the modeler since there are no mounting pins on them nor holes needing to be drilled in the lower hull of the ship (thank goodness!). Lastly, it’s worth noting that this kit is fully-licensed by Disney as evidenced by their logo in the lower right of the box lid.
I started on the kit shortly after receiving it (a belated Xmas present) so there will be a full build review coming soon.
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