May 4th is still several weeks away, but the merchandising wave for Solo: A Star Wars Story begins now! We're kicking things off with a hands-on look at Hasbro's Kessel Run Millennium Falcon, which just became available to order for $99.99 with free shipping.
Is it worth the money? Let's find out, starting with the official description (and keep in mind that there are some minor spoilers for the film ahead):
"Make the KESSEL RUN in less than 12 parsecs with the MILLENNIUM FALCON! Relive the adventure and imagine flying through every obstacle like ace pilot HAN SOLO with speed and action. Fans will experience flashing lights and sounds as they pretend to race along KESSEL RUN. Press the button to pretend that the iconic starship kicks in to hyperdrive with lights and sounds. Press the button a second time for accelerated lights and sounds as well as activate the rumble pack vibrations! Push the button a third time to pretend that your ship picks up even more speed and watch the panels pop off before rumbling to the finish line! Comes with an exclusive 3.75-inch scale HAN SOLO figure and removable mini ship. Both the figure and mini ship are FORCE LINK 2.0 enabled, with phrases and sounds activated by the wearable technology, sold separately. Includes 1 vehicle (with removable mini ship) and 1 figure. Requires 3 AA batteries, included."
As you can see in the image above, the Kessel Run Millennium Falcon required a bit of assembly. A simple process overall, but I will say that affixing all of those stickers is a huge pain when you have big hands.
Batteries are included, so once the stickers are placed and the panels are added, you can dive right into the lights, sounds, and vibration features. There's a peg on the bottom of the ship that enables takeoff and landing sounds, and flight sounds can be activated by moving the ship around. There are also two buttons on the sides that activate various sounds when pressed in sequence. The left button activates cannon sounds on the first press, and missile sounds when pressed and held. The button on the right activates hyperdrive lights and sounds on the first press, and accelerate lights, sounds, and rumble on the second press. On the third press, panels on the front and back of the ship pop off as the ship enters "hyper speed mode".
The effects are a fun, but activating them reliably takes a little getting used to. First off, you'll need to flip the switch on the bottom from I to II to activate the full range of features. I found that cycling through the sounds, lights, rumble, and blast-off panel modes only worked properly after the liftoff mode was initiated. Pressing the buttons without having done that first didn't always result in the desired effect. You can take a peek at the lighting effect and the blast-off panel mode in the gallery below.
I should also point out that we couldn't test out the Force Link 2.0 capability since we didn't have the gauntlet. A Force Link 2.0 starter set with a 3.75-inch Han Solo figure is expected to arrive soon . It will enable movie sound effects from Solo: A Star Wars Story across dozens of compatible toys.
On the subject of those blast-off panels, there has been much discussion about the difference between the Millennium Falcon that appears in Solo and the Millennium Falcon that we know and love. Obviously, this toy depicts the Millennium Falcon when it was in tip top shape - the Lando Calrissian Millennium Falcon before Han Solo got his hands on it. That having been said, it seems pretty clear that the missing panels will be addressed in the upcoming film, as well as the break away "mini ship" that fits in the Millennium Falcon's forks (note that it is referred to on the back of the box specifically as an "escape craft").
As the name of this toy suggests, there's also a good chance that we'll see the actual Kessel Run in this film - and we wouldn't be surprised if the loss of the escape pod and/or panels is tied into that.
At any rate, if you like the factory-fresh look of Hasbro's Kessel Run Millennium Falcon, it is a pretty fantastic toy. The $99.99 price tag seems a bit high if we're honest (especially since you'll have to invest in the Force Link 2.0 starter set if you want to take advantage of that functionality), but at least this is a toy that's made to be played with, not sit on the shelf in its original packaging. We're guessing that you'll get your money's worth out of it - especially if you have kids.
Hasbro's Star Wars Kessel Run Millennium Falcon with 3.75 scale Han Solo figure is available to order here.
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