Found them this morning. Man, what a great feeling to find something new that I've been dying to get. A couple assortments must be shipping because I found x4 Clones, x2 Anakins, and x2 Sith. I figure that's 2/2 Sith/Clone and 2/2 Anakin/Clone cases. They didn't have Ani's last night so they all were newly placed this morning.
I thought I'd post my initial impressions...
I cracked them open and once again, like the Anakin sets, they're so
close to being perfect figures that it's actually frustrating.
For the clones, the paint apps are perfect, especially on the AOTC one -- the carbon scoring/scuff marks are really convincing and I'm happy to see the red dust on his boots, like he's straight off Geonosis.
Even the accessory weapons are better. The guns are a gunmetal grey plastic that have been drybrushed with aluminum highlights. They look real. The removable helmets are a nice touch, fit well, and don't feel cheap. I think the Clone Pilot helm is a vast improvement over the Saga carded version because it has really flexible air hoses and better paint detail.
Articulation is great, with one big, glaring exception. The lack of a balljoint torso is really, really missed. It keeps the figures from being ultimately poseable. Once you're used to the superior SA Clone body, you can only be disappointed that it hasn't been modified for use on these guys. The AOTC and Sandtrooper don't even have waist articulation -- their torsos are one solid piece from the pelvis to the neck. The ROTS version gets a swivel waist for some reason. Not having the separation of the upper and lower sections also reduces the realistic appearance of the armor. It feels cheap and plasticy on a figure that otherwise is startlingly detailed and realistic. So, so close.
The same can be said of the Sith Lords. Great detail, solid sculpts, and a few articulation missteps that prevent them from being perfect. If these weren't probably our best shots at "ultimate" figures, it would be easier to overlook the minor flaw. But since these should be ultimate versions, the small instances of articulation skimping stand out as glaring problems.
Maul is nearly perfect (if you're ok with the gritting teeth) except, again, for the articulation. He has swivel elbows instead of much needed balljoints. Otherwise, he's the best Maul ever.
Dooku isn't really an improvement over the carded version so he's the oddball of the set. There's nothing wrong with him, but we already had a perfect Dooku.
I was prepared to hate the Emperor. I was shocked that I actually dig him! He is actually quite short, so he seems in scale, where from pictures and Cons in past, he seemed tall. He has balljoint elbows, shoulders, and knees. He can actually sit down. The soft goods cloak is fantastic. They've used a separate plastic choker for the neck, so you can control how much hood rises above the neck, which helps make it fit right both unhooded and hooded. When you move the hood up, you can pull cloth tight under the plastic collar to make the hood sit snugly to his head instead of ballooning out. Really impressive thought went into the soft goods on him. I can't wait to see if the standard ROTS Emperor head can be swapped onto the body, because if it can, there's an easy custom seated Emperor with a neutral face. Good times.
I should have the sets added to the Image Database tonight.