This version of the iconic X-wing fighter was a game changer in the history of Star Wars toy vehicles. Instead of using the smaller-scaled mould that was part of the original wave of Star Wars figures way back in 1978 and used in every version of Luke’s starfighter through the vintage Kenner days and into the Power of the Force line, this version was the first to upscale the vehicle to more realistic proportions. It’s the precursor to X-wing fighters that came out in the early-mid 2000’s and of course, The Vintage Collection versions that became the “standard” for Hasbro until The Force Awakens line in 2015 when they briefly returned to a version similar in scale to the original mould with Poe Dameron’s Black Leader and Blue Leader X-wing fighters.
It also came with electronic lights and sounds features (hence the name), firing torpedo, extremely detailed sculpting and….two built-in figures. Yep, the Luke Skywalker piloting this vehicle is sculpted into the vehicle and is not removable. Same with R2-D2 back in the astromech slot. But before we get into all the features let’s take a look at the packaging.
Assembly was straightforward with only the wings, llaser cannons and handle needed to be installed. The sticker sheet was extremely intimidating but I managed to get them onto the X-wing with only a few wrinkles. For 1998 the detailing on this is really good and it fits right in with the rest of my X-wing fighter collection. One thing to remember is to put the stickers on before assembling the wings and pay special attention to the super-thin stickers that wrap around the front of the engines. You may have to swap out the batteries that come pre-installed since we’re talking about an over 20-year old toy. Luckily ours still had working batteries.
The stickers really make the X-wing fighter come alive and those along with some decent weathering applications make it look like it has seen some action. The rear of the vehicle especially looks beat up and carbon-scored and along with an engine electronic feature, it looks like it’s just flown out of the Death Star trench. More on the X-wing’s electronic features later. Since we’re looking at the tail of the X-wing we should note that there is a lever located here that opens and closes the wings of the starfighter. There is a folding handle that is attached to the belly of the X-wing fighter and this is, in our opinion, a really cool feature! The handle folds out of the way when not in use or when the starfighter is resting on it’s landing struts (which fold into the X-wing). It’s just a fun little addition that makes flying the ship around the house safe and easy. And who hasn’t taken their Star Wars ships, held them up to eye level and ran down a hallway? (Full disclosure: I tried it, it’s fun.)
The electronic features are activated by pressing down on R2D2’s dome or by moving two different levers and pressing button that is located behind Artoo. The video below explains the sounds and how to activate them. While fun to play with, the sound effects aren’t near as cool as the lighting effects in our opinion. The cockpit lights up and the engines light up as well. This alone makes us miss electronic effects in more modern vehicles.