01 August 2020

LEGO® Star Wars review: 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter

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We're harking back to one of the January LEGO® Star Wars sets today: 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter which has been reviewed by Ryan Welles. The product in this article was provided for free by LEGO; the author's opinions are not biased by this.

Three thoughts spring into my mind when beholding yet another LEGO® Star Wars X-wing fighter: those resistance people sure like them X-wings; Poe Dameron is a lucky so-and-so for flying almost each and every one of the these; and if it ain't broke, don't fix it. That last thought is what counts most here because ever since the release of X-wing set 9493 in 2012, the design has stayed virtually the same, with its iconic white, grey and red colours. New slope, wedge and arch pieces have given the vessel a slightly more polished look and the mechanism to open the wings has altered somewhat, but the basic idea has remained unchanged for eight years.

The year 2015, which coincided with the start of a new trilogy, gave us an X-wing in black and orange (set 75102); a year later spoilt Poe got one in blue and grey (75149); and the iconic ship from the original trilogy got an update in 2018 (set 75218). Last year, employees of the LEGO Group even got a Christmas version in red and white candy-cane colours; set 400219. All these were based on the initial design from 2012.

And the same goes for yet another version, now in orange, white and a hint of azure in set number 75273. Is this a sign of the popularity of the X-wing, or an obsession with making LEGO sets out of the most striking vehicles of the new trilogy? (And if so, why did Poe's X-wing from the Force Awakens explode without even leaving the ground?)

Who knows and, to be honest: who cares. What you want to know is: is set 75273 with its 761 pieces, four minifigs and the steep price of £89.99 / $89.99 / 97.47€ worth your hard-earned money?

New, recoloured and printed parts

This X-wing introduced a new type of round brick: 1/4 Arch Brick 3X3, W/ Cutout, No. 1 in Medium Stone Grey/ Light Bluish Gray (6294038 | 65617) which compliments both the existing 5X5 version (24599) and the macaroni brick and tile (85080 and 27925). The part is also available in White and Light Purple/ Bright Pink in the Monkie King set 80009, which Tim Goddard recently reviewed, and the new Star Wars set 75293 Resistance I-TS Transport has eight of them in Bright Blue/ Blue.

There are two parts recoloured in Dark Azure worth mentioning. First of all, there is the Plate Round Half 3 x 6 with 1 x 2 Cutout (6097476 | 18646) which also appears in two other 2020 sets. Then there is a Wheel 8mm D. x 14mm with Axle Hole, Fake Bolts and Shallow Spokes (6289723 | 55982). Only one of the Bright Orange/ Orange parts in the set is new: Slope 33° 3 x 4 (6289427 | 3297) which is a mould that originally dates from 1971.
There are two printed pieces of interest in 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter. A 1x2 tile in Dark Stone Grey/ Dark Bluish Gray printed with various screens and buttons is used here as well as two other Star Wars sets. The only printed part exclusive to the set (aside from minifigures) is the cockpit, Windscreen 8 x 4 x 2 with 2 Studs and Handle in Transparent/ Trans-Clear (6289537 | 66759), which is very similar to previous versions but printed with a simple window design in Medium Stone Grey.

Minifigures in 75273 Poe Dameron's X-wing Fighter

Four minifigures are included, two unique to this set, making it a must-have for minifigure collectors. Since this set was released together with The Rise of Skywalker, these two new minifigures are seen in this movie.

First of all, there is the fierce huntress Jannah. She has a new hairpiece with Brick Yellow/ Tan goggles and one of her hands contains a glove in Sand Yellow/ Dark Tan. She comes with a bow and arrow quiver. Her torso is printed on both sides and she has two facial expressions. I sincerely hope someday we also get to see her equine orbak in ABS-form.

You need to buy yourself three different sets to get the four different Knights of Ren. The one included here is called Vicrul and is beautifully decorated with chainmail on both sides of his torso. Even though his head is plain black, he has a gorgeous helmet with silver decorations. He holds both a blaster and horn shaped dagger.

Poe Dameron is a minifigure we have seen many times by now, and the printed pieces that he is made out of were available in other sets as well. The combination provided here is unique though and he comes with both a helmet and hair piece, a blaster and two facial expressions.

Cuddable R2-D2 seems to be the most common of all the minifigures provided with this set. It still seems to be a problem to get his printing correct, since most of these droids suffer from bad alignment with the lower band of printing being far from straight. Still, the version we see here was only released in one other set (this year's 75270 Obi Wan's Hut) which is thanks to his newly printed dome piece.

The Build

The build is divided into six stages of which stages 4 and 5 are pretty much the same, as they consist of building the wings and their mirror versions.

But let's start at the beginning. The bags labelled number 1 form the outlines of the main hull. It also contains the mechanism to open and close the wings. In past versions of the X-wing this has been done with gears, but here we see the mechanism that was introduced in 2018 with set 75218. The hull also contains some bricks with studs on the sides for future vertical instructions, as well as the Technic (or semi-Technic) pieces for attachment of the wings.

Stage 2 is responsible for building the nose. The four-module wide hull is tapered to three studs with the use of hinge bricks and plates. Jumper plates make sure that even studded parts such as plates and tiles can be attached. The result is a sleek look. Through the centre of the nose runs a line of Technic pieces that enable the plates to be attached, a technique that was introduced way back in 2012. Subsequently, the Technic liftarms that stick out at the bottom enables the attachment of the retractable front landing gear.

The next phase of the build gives the vessel's hull its final look. Wedge plates and slope pieces are attached sideways. These also include some stud shooters next to the cockpit as well as one of the three stickers included with this set. The cockpit is finished with a printed cockpit piece (who remembers the dreadful times of having to apply stickers to a transparent cockpit piece? Oh yeah, that happened with the UCS A-Wing released this May). In the cockpit there is a clip that can hold Poe's blaster as well as some printed tile pieces officiating as control panels.

As mentioned the fourth and fifth stages are all about building the wings. The top and bottom wings are different in shape, providing some welcome variation. The lower wings contain a spring-loaded shooter each. These wings are not completely finished yet, since some final plates and slopes need to be added once these are hung into place. Two more stickers decorate the top orange arches near the base of the top wings. A total number of four white rubber bands make sure that a lever at the bottom of the vessel pops the wings back into resting position once it is pushed. These rubber bands still don’t provide the prettiest sight, but are highly functional. It is a good thing these are White, and not Bright Blue as with sets 75102 and 75149.

The last phase creates the finishing touches. Plates and slopes are added, including the new arch pieces. With the wings closed these form perfect 6x6 circles. Also, the engines and blasters are included. This is matter of building the same assembly four times, but fortunately boredom does not kick in since these are small sub builds. Finally, there is also a small four-piece ladder included.
The Verdict

The latest X-wing at the firmament is 10 units of your local currency more expensive than the previous ones, yet the amount of parts remains basically unchanged. There are no sub-builds worth mentioning, besides a small ladder, meaning more of those parts went into the actual vessel. Each and every entry of the X-wing fleet seems to be an improvement in both looks and building techniques compared to the one released before. It feels there is not much left for improvement but obviously, new parts enable more refined building techniques.

Additionally, the combination of white and orange with the incidental azure is aesthetically pleasing. Even though the price may be a bit too high, this set comes with two unique minifigures: Jannah with her bow and a Knight of Ren. This may be its unique selling point and worth the extra money.

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