I finally got around to picking up the BAT-AT. For those of you that don’t know, that stands for Big All Terrain Armored Transport (Big because it is closer to the correct scale than the previous version that has been re-released over the past decades). Sometimes it’s called The Walker, or, as an ex of mine once called it, “the big thing that looks kind of like an ugly dog.”
Before I begin we need to discuss price, because price was the biggest consideration in when I made my purchase. The fact of the matter is that a trend has been set over the past years by the other large Star Wars toys, and I knew that eventually the price would be just right. I have been following the price since its release, and here is the current price from places I regularly buy toys. So here is the break down:
Regular or average price $100
Big Bad Toy Store $149/$109 +S&H
Brian’s Toys $129 +S&H
Entertainment Earth $108 +S&H
Toys R Us $79/$89 (you have to pay more online)
Walmart $79/$95 (you have to pay more online)
Now here is the catch, some of the stores are already getting rid of them. I picked mine up at K-mart for $50, then a day later it was up to $75, now it’s back up to $99. Think about that, that’s a $100 price difference between the highest and the lowest, and $50 less than the average. So be warned, if you are going to purchase this, shop around, and you can find a really good deal!
This is what your hard earned money gets you, except obviously you get four legs and four feet. Please note that you get one AT-AT Driver, and one speeder bike. I love the speeder bike. The body of the bike is the same one that Hasbro has been using since the mid-nineties, however the handle bars have finally been fixed to be more movie accurate (they bend in rather than are straight up), as has the outrigger, sensor array and directional steering vanes. I would have preferred a biker scout to go with the speeder bike, but then it’s a “free” figure so you can’t complain too much.
It’s a great looking toy, once it’s put together. It’s got some great looking “weathering” paint applications, however I would like to have some more paint applications because it has miles of gray plastic. The sculpt on this monster is amazing, the detail involved in the panels is wonderful, it definitely helps make up for the lack of paint. The Panels that open are well hidden, and they fit snugly together. I am somewhat concerned about the rubber neck, the rubber used on toys doesn’t always hold up well over time. In some cases it has been known to disintegrate within a year.
The Articulation is very stiff, and I’m glad. I makes it easier to pose and to hold the pose. All the joints are swivel joints. the “hips” and “knees” have about 140 degrees of rotation, and the feet have about 90 degrees of rotation. One of the perks of the increased shoes size is that it is extremely stable. I had it balanced on two legs, giving it the appearance of actually walking. The head is basically a ball joint, in the sense that it can move, however it isn’t really possible, it moved with a control arm like a puppet, or locked into place.
To fully understand the scope of this beast let’s do some comparison shots with the old one.
Before I bought this, I looked at pictures, read the specifications, but I just didn’t fully understand how big it is. So here is the break down- the old body length was 23.5 inches long, the new body length 29.5 inches long and with rear panel open 34 inches long. The old leg length is 13 inches with the new leg length coming in at 17 inches. The old foot is 4.5 inches long and the new foot is 6.125 inches long. The old overall height is 18.5 inches tall, the new height is 25.5 inches tall. It’s one thing to read the numbers, and look at the pictures, but just to reinforce the point, it’s as tall as my neighbors black lab, my niece was petting it like a puppy, she tried to climb on it and ride it like a rocking horse, my got dog got scared and ran away from it.
If the outside isn’t cool enough check out all the work that went into the inside. They turned a vehicle into a play set. I was blown away at all the parts that opened up, and all the detail that went into the interior sculpt.
The previous model’s interior-
One of my favorite features is this,
A hatch opens up in the belly, and it has a grapple rope that raises and lowers, so that you can recreate the scene in The Empire Strikes Back, when Luke cuts open the belly of the AT-AT with his lightsaber, throws a grenade inside and blows it up.
You should know that it requires three AA batteries for the electronic components. It has six buttons in various locations that produce the famous hulking walking sound, the speeder bike sounds laser fire, lights to go with the laser fire, movie voices including Darth Vader, A light up tactical screen, And more. Luckily it also has an on/off switch. I would also like to note that it has an excellent sounding speaker, unlike Galactus.
To wrap this monster up, I think this is the coolest toy I bought this year. Yes, you should buy this, buy an army of them, just make sure you shop around when you do, and make sure you get a good deal.