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Monday, June 27, 2016
Micro Review: Naboo Temple Ruins from Micro Machines: Star Wars Episode I by Galoob
Accessories: One connector ramp, two flight poles, 4 microfigures, and a vehicle.
Original Retail Price: $12-$15 dollars
Boss Nass, Gungan Guard, two Peko Pekos, and a Gian Speeder.
* The vehicle included in the Naboo Temple Ruins playset is a Gian speeder, the more heavily armored of the two main speeders used by the Naboo Royal Guard. It's a nice little model with a cool, metallic paint job.
* Looking back on Episode 1, I'm impressed by how much cool flora and fauna Naboo had. It's a gorgeous world and trying to catch every detail still makes the scenes set on that planet fun to watch. This set comes with two identical Peko Pekos which are capable of being removed from the flight wands in the set.
* The flight wands are removable as well, in case you want to use them for other purposes. The idea is that when both Peko Pekos are attached to the flight wands they can actually hover around the playset. If you have someone standing on top of the tree trunk on the left side of the set they will be knocked over as one of the creatures dives down and attacks. The feature works great but you can remove it to make space for other types of play. It's really well thought out.
* On the left side of the set is a giant tree trunk with a relief of Queen Amidala. It's not removable and is permanently attached to the tree trunk. But wait, that's not actually Queen Amidala, is it?
* Spin a little ridged disc on the side and part of the tree trunk rotates to reveal Padme, the true queen of Naboo. Little stuff like this, as goofy as it may seem, is what made these playsets great. It acknowledged stuff from the films while also offering little elements of interaction that made playtime more fun.
* You'll stumble upon this cool elevator heading up the stairs to the top of the Gungan's sacred place. It has a peg on it to keep figures nice and secure while you use the nearby lever (disguised as a rock) to raise and lower the platform. Again, stuff like this is just so much fun and makes these sets infinitely more interesting than what we're getting today.
* If you look at the set from the back you'll see a very cool cave. This is what the elevator lowers down into. There's also a translucent rotating "arm" that the Gian speeder can be plugged onto which allows the speeder to kind of hover around the playset.
* The above mentioned arm rotates through the exit of the cave, passing through a curtain of moss and what not. It's actually a few pieces of thin plastic but it's a cool effect.
* On the far right side of the playset is another tree trunk. Place a microfigure on top of this tree trunk and push a button: They'll catapult through the air! I'm not sure if this is intended to represent the athletic Gungans jumping around, an attack by the Trade Federation, or perhaps it's just a silly feature. It's fun, though, and that's what counts.
* Honestly, the only problem I have with this set is that it doesn't have a lever or a rotating disc which allows the Gian speeder to move. You really do have to physically move the vehicle yourself. That kind of robs this feature of some of the fun you'd expect from it. Imagine how cool it would have been if the thing spun on it's own.
I've reviewed a few other Micro Machines sets from both Galoob and Hasbro, including:
Micro Machines: Star Wars by Galoob (1994)
Classic Characters (2nd Edition)
Micro Machines: Star Wars by Hasbro (2015)
Droid Army Ambush
First Order Star Destroyer Playset
First Order Stormtrooper Playset
Millennium Falcon Playset