One of newer LEGO Star Wars sets that was released in early 2012 was the Droid Escape (9490). It recreates the scene from Episode IV: A New Hope where C-3PO and R2-D2 escape the Tantive IV and land in Tatooine. The set contains 137 pieces and retails for $19.99.
There are four minifigures included with the set: R2-D2, C-3PO, and two Sandtroopers. C-3PO has a new design but the same color as before. R2-D2 is the same the previous version. The Sandtroopers also go through a redesign with the newer black head piece which has a face. The armor also goes through changes showing more detailing such as brown sand markings to show that the armor has been though the desert. Accessories included with the troopers are the backpacks and their blasters. Another updated feature is the pauldron to distinguish the ranks of the troopers. The Squad Leader gets the orange pauldron while the Sergeant trooper gets the white pauldron.
There are two builds in the Droid Escape set, the Sandtrooper’s speeder bike and the escape pod itself. First the speeder bike looks like the other bikes I’ve reviewed but this one is noticeably smaller. Other than that, it’s pretty much what we’ve seen before.
Now on to the star of the show, the escape pod. It is extremely easy to build. The only thing that was a bit challenging was the stickers because you have to line them up fairly well. Comparing them to a diagram I found online, the big stickers resemble the access panels while the small ones look like sensor bands. There are six attitude control thrusters on the pod, three on the top and three on the bottom. Also on the bottom are four retro-rocket nozzles. On the inside on the escape pod, there’s not much to see. The seat is right in the middle with the control panel right in front.
Overall, I feel that the set is a little underwhelming. I think the escape pod could’ve been a little more detailed. Also, I didn’t really like the stickers on the outside of the pod. It would’ve been better if it was printed on instead. What I think the draw of the Droid Escape set are the minifigures themselves. The Sandtroopers are surprisingly amazing. Would I recommend getting this set? Yes and no. If you want to add to your collection a memorable scene from the movie, then by all means. But if you are wanting just the minifigs, I would suggest getting them from Bricklink or another source. At the $19.99 price, it’s not a bad deal either way.