RANDY TEST DRIVES THE SWAMP SPEEDER!

Randy here!
Summer’s in full swing here in LA but I want to take a look back. Seems I never got the chance to post a photo review of Hasbro’s Star Wars mid-size vehicle Swamp Speeder!

I’ve always a fan of cool vehicles from movies in general and Star Wars specifically. No real reason why one catches the eye more than another, but the Star Wars universe seems to have them in bunches!

In Revenge of the Sith, two vehicles caught my eye: the Turbo Tank and the Swamp Speeder. The Turbo Tank has been a favorite back when it was shown in “The Empire Strikes Back Sketchbook” waaaayyyy back in the day as a precursor design to the AT-AT. But that’s another review… and would give me a good reason to unbox the beast!

But I really dug the design of the Swamp Speeder and was quite happy to see it show up at Hasbro’s rollout for this 2010′s American International Toy Fair. Finding one has been a completely different story!

The one you see here I picked up back in Oct. ’10 at a Toys R Us. Since then, I’ve NEVER seen it in any store whatsoever! Glad I decided to splurge on it.


The Swamp Speeder comes without any sound function but does has rocket firing guns. I know we need to watch out for the kids with toy safety, but these new rocket firing mechanisms are pretty obnoxious. There are issues with being able to snap them into firing slot, then when that’s done, they also like to launch away for no apparent reason. OK, maybe it’s the Force!
Digging the recessed wheels for “hovering effect”-like the old school Landspeeder!

Each set of guns can move independently on the horizontal and vertical axis. Again-just be careful you don’t accidentally fire them off-which will likely disappear forever



The paint ops is wonderfully done, with nice attentions to detail such as silvered edging along with paint wear from use in combat. But there was one issue that came while trying to strap in the Clone Troopers.




I KNOW these are for kids and maybe I’m just old. But Trying to snap that rig around the Clone Trooper was a PITA and took the longest time! There seemed to be little “breathing room” when strapping the figure in and the straps themselves are so pliable as to make getting them into the slot to hold a real challenge!
But I DID eventually get it done, but it seemed like a lot of effort for a such a little thing.
This might not be in Hasbro’s control, but I think it would be cool if there were some kind of rack or holding clip for a Clone Trooper to secure his weapon. I mean it IS an open-air cockpit with not a lot of protective armor. Plus, if you have to land or crash, wouldn’t you want your weapon with you?
Maybe that’s just me…

Checking out the Swamp Speeder, I noticed that this had a lot of pegs on it. Since it doesn’t come with printed instruction beyond what’s on the package, I figured I’d see if they’d work with figures…




And sure enough they did!
I wouldn’t know WHY a trooper would stand up on the wings or weapons platform for fear of being a target or falling off! But who am I to know about military doctrine of the Republic Army?
Course, if you’re a Jedi in armor, such things likely don’t concern you as much.

I really dig the Swamp Speeder overall and hope you have better luck than I finding it. I think this needs another release, Hasbro!

Personally, I would love to be able display it slightly above ground, hovering.
Guess I’ll have to make due…

Have a great holiday (in the United States) and I’m going to celebrate another 4th of July birthday with friends and bbq!
Mmmm… pulled pork and brisket. Nummy!

Happy birthday, America and Me!

See you soon!

RANDY

About the Author

Randy has been writing about reporting on toys for AFTimes since 1995 and shows no sign of stopping! He's been in all aspects of toys and collecting from retail clerk to toy company adviser, as well as been a toy expert for CNN. He's met Comic Artists to Adult film stars to Navy SEALS, during his time, as well as covered events from SDCC to American International Toy Fair. He also loves movies, so don't be surprised if that comes up too-as well as some movie reviews!

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