‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 24

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And the final Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar Build is…

General Merrick’s snowman… or Rebel Alliance Olaf???

This is a nice little festive figure to usher in Christmas. The printing on the face is fun and it’s just something a bit different, and it comes with General Merrick’s helmet, which just tops off yesterday’s mini-fig. The helmet, however is one of the old-school Lego helmets and not one of the new ones that launched with the recent X-Wing set that was double moulded with the orange visor build into the piece. But that’s just by-the-by, at least Merrick’s got his helmet.

Before I go I would like to thank everyone who has gone down this Lego fuelled journey with me these past 24 days. I have loved building them and writing about them and I appreciate the time that you have put in reading them, so again, thank you, and Happy Holidays.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 23

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And the penultimate build of the Advent Calendar is…

General Antoc Merrick.

FINALLY! We finally get General Merrick from ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’.

I really like this character, the leader of Blue Squadron, he was one of the minor characters I took to when I first saw the film and I have always wanted a Blue Squadron X-Wing with General Merrick.

The face looks spot on for the character and the hair piece makes him instantly recognisable. The printed design of the flight-suit looks great, it’s been redesigned from the previous Blue Squadron mini-figs from 2016’s U-Wing and Y-Wing sets.

One thing I would have liked, and would have happily paid extra for, is that the recent X-Wing set came with the parts/stickers to make the ship either from Red Squadron or Blue Squadron, rather than Red 3 or Red 5. He’ll, I’d buy two! But at least we got the mini-fig!

It’s possibly the highlight of the Calendar for me, just saying. Don’t @ me.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 22

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s festive fun build is…

A festive looking Moisture Vaporator.

This is the first festive themed set from the Advent Calendar and even though it looks like a Christmas Tree, it is quite obviously a Moisture Vaporator like the ones we see on the Lars Homestead through Episodes 2 – 4.

It’s s fun little build, like most of the previous sets in the Calendar. And with only two more doors to go I think I know what’s coming but who knows what order.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 21

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s little gem is…

An Imperial Speeder Bike mini-build!!! Amazing!

I honestly love this. Again the attention to detail is amazing, the fact that they make it look like it’s hovering and gave it a green base to make it look like it’s in Endor.

I really think that they are saving the best for the last few days because the last few little gifts have been fantastic, not to take away from any of the daily builds (except the Blaster Cannon), every day (except the Blaster Cannon) has been a great and fun addition to the collection, but the last few days have really knocked it out of the park for me.

I really can’t wait for tomorrow’s addition.

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Speculation: Did Maz Actually Send Finn and Rose to Meet DJ?

I have had had a theory since first watching The Last Jedi in regards to Maz sending Finn and Rose to Canto Bight to meet the Master Code Breaker.

Did Maz actually send them to meet DJ and used the Master Code Breaker as the pin point for them being in the right place to be arrested so they would meet DJ.

If you think about it, Maz is Force Sensitive and may have foreseen the events on Canto Bight. I’m not putting the back story that has been established between Maz and the Master Code Breaker at all, my thoughts are that he wouldn’t go near Finn and Rose or their mission BUT Maz knew he would be there, at that table at that time AND the badge he was wearing.

It seems a bit too coincidental that they looked all over the Casino and he just so happens to be playing at a table right where Finn and Rose meet before being arrested and then meet someone who is able to do the job they need doing IN the same cell they are stuck in.

To me it seems that it is ‘the will of the Force’ that they meet DJ rather than the Master Code Breaker, that DJ does the job and in the end fail their mission.

Many people have commented on how the Canto Bight sequence is pointless because it all leads to nothing but I found it refreshing to see our heroes go on a risky mission and then at the last moment it goes wrong. It’s almost a given that the risky missions, the attacks on both Death Stars and Starkiller Base were risky and in all honesty the heroes should not have succeeded because all of the odds were against them but they do and the one time it doesn’t work out people complain, but did it really fail?

Yes, the ‘failure’ led to the decimation of The Resistance but if the Resistance shuttles hadn’t been targeted then Holdo wouldn’t have performed the Holdo Manoeuvre and destroyed the majority of the First Order fleet which gave the Resistance a fleeting chance on Crait.

And it was ALL because Maz sent Finn and Rose to Canto Bight to locate the Master Code Breaker at that gaming table to get arrested and thrown in a cell with DJ.

As Qui-Gon Jinn says in The Phantom Menace,

“Our meeting was not a coincidence. Nothing happens by accident.”

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 20

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Drum-roll please…

Today we got an Imperial Cargo Shuttle as seen in ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’.

As a mini-build this is pretty good. My only issue is the wings don’t fold down, but then I know I am just being fussy because it’s a mini-build and not a full blown set (which I would love to see one day).

As always the detail is really good, I love the little levers being used as cannons, these mini-builds really show how clever the Lego designers are by what few pieces these utilise but at the same time how well they are put together to make these instantly recognisable little toys.

We’re down to four more doors, it’s almost sad in a way.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 19

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Today’s the day the Advent Calendar gave me…

A mini AT-ACT.

The All Terrain Armoured Cargo Transport was a variation of the AT-AT that was introduced in ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ that was on the plant of Scarif, moving the orange crates around the planet (as modelled above).

This mini-build is a decent variation of a mini-AT-AT build and it’s the first Lego version of the AT-ACT the company has produced. I did hope for one with a previous wave of Rogue One sets, but there is always time.

Only five doors left…

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXVIII – Where Plans Come To Some Sort of Fruition

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

This week my plans to finish the ‘Star Wars: The Last Jedi’ commentary comes to an end, despite another cold and housework trying to get in my way.

Don’t forget you can purchase The Life Debt Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) from http://mystarwarslifedebt.bandcamp.com

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 18

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s little gift is…

A First Order Special Forces TIE Fighter. Now this wouldn’t be a surprise for those who have studied the art on the back of the box, as it depicts this build coming out of that door. Yes it could have been a mid-direction but in this world where Spoilers are frowned upon, surely Lego would have thought better.

I’m kidding, I don’t mind spoilers.

Anyway, it’s instantly recognisable as the Special Forces TIE Fighter, with the 1×1 round red tile connecting the cockpit to the wing, the transparent red tile makes the view-port look great and as far as mini-builds goes this really hits the nail on the head.

With only 6 more doors to open I’m really excited to see what else we get. Join me tomorrow for another reveal.

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 6: Royalty

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 6 – Royalty.

The Premise – After the destruction of Operation Cinder, Princess Leia and Danger Squadron (Shriv, Iden and Del) attempt to reactivate a weapons system that was installed in Theed prior to the Clone Wars.

As Leia, your job is to lead Del through the city and protect him from Imperial troops as he uses his technical know-how to reactivate the weapons systems whilst Shriv and Iden do the same on the opposite side of the city.

The heroes meet up again outside the Palace and fend off the Imperials long enough for all the New Republic forces to get inside where the weapon won’t affect them.

Once inside the weapon, a city-wide Ion Blast goes off, shutting down all of the Imperials weapons and vehicles, allowing the New Republic to win the day.

Gameplay- Much like the Luke Skywalker mission the perspective is set in third person. The Leia character model looks much better than the Luke one and Misty Lee does a great job at the voice of a younger Leia. The character is well written and doesn’t feel like the writers have tried to hard to make her feel like Princess Leia.

Easter Eggs – Theed, the capital of Naboo featured in all three Prequel films and in a shot in the celebration scene in the DVD and Blu-Ray versions of Return of the Jedi, is the setting of this mission and the designers have nailed the aesthetic from all of the previous material. The Ion Blast weapon was created after the Battle of Naboo in ‘The Phantom Menace’ when the Droid Army of the Trade Federation occupied the city.

As far as the ‘hero’ levels go this is my favourite, even though they all feel like they have been shoehorned into the game to placate the fans. The mission feels like a logical continuation of the previous mission and it’s fun to play as Leia.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 17

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Today’s little gem is…

The Guavian Death Gang Enforcer, a perfect counterpart to yesterday’s Rathtar.

This mini-fig was previously released as part of the ‘Rathtar Escape’ set.

The detailing on this mini-fig is brilliant. The helmet looks fantastic and the design on the body looks spot on. I would happily buy a Battle Pack with a few of these just to display them looking menacing on the shelf.

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If you would like to hear the ‘Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) please visit the Bandcamp Page HERE.

My Star Wars (Life) Reviews – The Force Awakens

How does one prepare to watch one of the most anticipated films ever?

By binge-eating sweets, drinking coffee and hoping the butterflies in your stomach is actually nerves and not an inconvenient need to go for a poo when the film is mere moments away from starting.

That was how I felt three years ago on the night that I saw Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, at a midnight screening in a packed theatre. Not far away was an Obi-Wan Kenobi and the costume was pretty spot on.

The lights finally went out and the curtain opened and it started. And I began a mental checklist. Lucasfilm title? Yes! Opening title and crawl? Check. Pan down to a planet? Check. Ship entering frame? Check. It had passed the first of my mental tests so I sat back and (almost) relaxed.

Almost two and a half hours later I left the cinema and met a co-worker who had seen it in another of the full screenings. We said one word… “wow!” To say I enjoyed it would be an understatement. To say I was relieved would also be an understatement.

The Force Awakens is brilliant. It feels like Original Trilogy Star Wars, not because it’s a lot like A New Hope, but it’s got that same… je ne sais quois… the look of the film, the feel of the locations and characters, the story… it all screams Star Wars to me.

The new characters shine throughout this film. The old characters are a welcome sight to behold. Seeing the Millennium Falcon again is just like going home after a long trip away.

Of all the new characters introduced in this film, Poe was my instant favourite, the way he interacts with BB-8 was so heartwarming, he’s funny but got a lot of heart. His scenes with Finn, from their first conversation on board The Finalizer to their brief but significant moment before flying to Starkiller Base really made me hope to see more of that bromance throughout the Sequel Trilogy.

I couldn’t help but fall in love with Rey, and not in a creepy way, her line about thinking Luke Skywalker being a myth really hit me, she’s a fan just like us, except to us he is an actual myth. The way she goes through the film, being thrown into strange and new situations and having a sense of wonder is great to see, especially when they are flying over Takodana.

Finn, I think, is the heart of the film. How can we not love him. He deserted the First Order, he is incredibly loyal towards Rey, even when he does leave he comes back and instantly wants to find her. He endangers the whole galaxy just to go to Starkiller base just to find her and he almost gets himself killed trying to protect her from Kylo Ren.

Speaking of whom, Kylo Ren… definitely one of my favourite Star Wars characters of all time and perfectly played by Adam Driver. He’s an angry boy who is good but want to play bad and has a desperate need to prove himself to his master. His conflict within himself is what makes him so intriguing and he has definitely been the character I speculated about the most. I was shocked to find out his name, ‘Ben’, and that scene him and Han Solo is one of cinemas greatest moments for me. I love Kylo but I hate him for his murder of Han. Like the character I am also conflicted.

Han and Chewie’s triumphant return to the screen (and the Falcon) is so well portrayed. It’s as if they hadn’t been away for over thirty years. Han’s story in this film is well thought out and his death is unfortunately necessary but hard to watch, even now and I have seen the film countless times by this point. Other than the scene with Kylo, his best moments are those with Leia. Seeing them together was beautiful and their farewell was perfect.

Like A New Hope and Phantom Menace, being the first part of a trilogy, The Force Awakens purpose is to set up the world, introducing the new characters, reintroducing the older characters and setting up the state of the galaxy, the Resistance and the First Order. This isn’t just another part of an ongoing story. For the fans it’s a continuation but for the new fans it’s the beginning of their Star Wars adventure and it paves the way for ‘The Last Jedi’ to really take the story for these new characters and run with it.

Some fans may have criticised it for being too similar to A New Hope, for me this wasn’t a problem, my theory is that The Force Awakens was the film the fans needed. The familiar and the new all together to make one beautiful package.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 16

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And on the 16th Day, Lego gave to me…

A mini-build Rathtar.

OK, this is cool. It’s well designed and instantly recognisable as one of those tentacle and teeth ridden monsters from ‘The Force Awakens’ that Rey accidentally releases when trying to save Han and Chewie from Kanjiklub and The Guavian Death Gang.

They have been released before in Lego form at a larger scale in the ‘Rathtar Escape’ set.

This is probably one of my favourites from the Advent Calendar so far so I am really happy with it.

Only 8 more days of Advent Calendar goodness, how will we cope?

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 15

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s mini-build of brilliance is…

An Imperial Death Trooper.

These originally appeared in ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ and then in ‘Star Wars: Rebels’. They act as personal security for high-ranking Imperial Agents, such as Director Krennic and Grand Admiral Thrawn.

In Lego form they have appeared in two sets, firstly, ‘Krennic’s Shuttle’ from the original wave of Rogue One sets and then in the Imperial Walker Battle Pack.

This one doesn’t come with a weapon, unlike the previous two mini-figs from the Advent Calendar, but seeing as we got two blaster rifles yesterday I’m not going to whinge about it.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 14

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s lovely Lego build is…

A Blaster Rifle Rack. This, for me is more exciting that a Blaster Cannon. Don’t ask me why, it just is. Perhaps is the use of the transparent red 1×1 tubes that add a little bit more to it than a standard black and grey mounted stud shooter.

Whilst not a thrilling build it looks nice and could be added to many a diorama as a background feature.

I can’t believe there are only ten more doors to open. I have really enjoyed having these little Lego builds, if only it was feasible to have one every day of the year… yeah, if only.

Come back tomorrow to find out what’s behind Door Number 15.

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Clone Wars Legacy – The Return?

When the twelve episodes of Season 7 of The Clone Wars come to an end, which will probably bring the series to its conclusion with at least three story arcs, including ‘The Siege of Mandalore’ there are a plethora of arcs they can choose from, the Boba Fett/Cad Bane arc, The Sith Temple arc, Yoda and the Wookiees, The Bad Batch and Crystal Crisis arcs and Ahsoka on Coruscant to name a few and we don’t know if Filoni and co. haven’t written new arcs for this season.

If we only get three arcs that leaves a whole bunch of unused material. Back in 2013/2014 we were told that untold stories would reach the fans in other mediums. We got Dark Disciple as a novel, Son of Dathomir as a comic series and then The Bad Batch and Crystal Crisis arcs as animatics. But there are still more stories to tell.

Once Season 7 is done is it possible for the ‘Clone Wars Legacy’ to become a thing again and get the untold stories. Personally I would love a series of novels to finish off the series, but I’m more than welcome to getting them in other mediums as well.

Of course, if Season 7 is a success for Disney, it’s possible they may decide to make these untold stories for Disney+ and keep that part of the franchise in one place, which could mean more seasons or animated films, like the DC Animated films which are always popular.

I feel it would be a waste of the fantastic writing talent that worked on The Clone Wars to let the untold stories gather dust on a shelf somewhere in the Lucasfilm Vault and the fan base, which is often divided at the moment, generally all enjoy The Clone Wars so more stories would always be greatly appreciated.

Personally I would love to get the Sith Temple arc as discussed at the ‘Ahsoka’ panel at SWCE 2016 where a Sith Temple is discovered, buried under the Jedi Temple on Coruscant. Ever since hearing about it I’ve been very intrigued and was reminded today by a Podcast that it was mentioned in one of the recent novels. Looks like I have some more reading to do.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 13

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Another day, another mini-Build and today’s is…

The Imperial Troop Transport.

This vehicle was originally designed by staff at Kenner Toys to help flesh out their toy line in the late 70’s and it finally made its way on screen in Season One of ‘Star Wars: Rebels’.

Lego released a Battle Pack of this vehicle a long with four Stormtroopers in 2015 and this is the first time it has appeared in an Advent Calendar.

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How I’ve Ruined The First Episode IX Trailer For Myself.

I was listening to some Star Wars Podcasts and they were talking about the rumoured Episode IX teaser we may be getting this month and my head went on a bit of a roller coaster of ‘What If’, and honestly I gave myself chills!

Imagine, it would be much like the 2014 ‘Force Awakens’ teaser we got with Snoke’s voice-over with various clips and finishing with The Falcon flying overhead, think that kind of length and style.

We get shots of Rey and Rose doing their thing. Finn, Poe and Chewie on the Grassland planet with Horses. Kyle’s new mask. Maybe Hux looking annoyed, all with this voice over, re-recorded lines from ‘Empire Strikes Back’.

Vader: Luke

Luke: Father

Anakin: Son, come with me.

We then get a shot of Force Ghost Luke in Force Ghost limbo and a hand rests on his shoulder revealing Force Ghost Anakin.

Luke opens his eyes and Anakin fades.

Luke: Ben, why didn’t you tell me?

Title Card.

It’s more the thought of using that dialogue with a a new context, maybe we find out Force Ghost Anakin has tried to contact Ben in the past before he turned on Luke and never told his Master.

So, yeah, thought I would just throw that out there.

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‘Tis The Season to Build Lego – Day 12

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s big reveal is…

Anakin’s Jedi Starfighter from The Clone Wars!

This is fantastically recognisable, right down the the 1×1 round white brick that represents R2-D2.

As a mini-Build version of THIS SET HERE it looks great and seeing as we are getting new Clone Wars next year it feels very fitting to get some Clone Wars appreciation in this Advent Calendar. I have always been a fan of these Starfighters from their initial release in 2002 with ‘Attack of the Clones’. I just wish that we could get a new Obi-Wan version without a Hyperdrive ring.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXVII – Where The Best Laid Plans Do Go Wrong

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

This week I try to talk my way through the last three episodes of Star Wars: Resistance as I deal with the aftermath of a cold and can barely string a sentence together.

Don’t forget you can purchase The Life Debt Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) from http://mystarwarslifedebt.bandcamp.com

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

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‘Tis The Season to Build Lego – Day 11

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s big reveal is…

Rowan Freemaker from Lego Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures.

As I stated in Day 3 of the Advent Calendar posts, when we got The Arrowhead, I’m not very well versed in the Freemaker Adventures. I have only seen a handful of episodes so far but from what I do know, Rowan is the Force Sensitive member of the Freemaker family and his main Force ability is to build things using the Force.

I really like the detail on his torso and the hair piece looks great and different from other, more typical hair pieces.

Whilst it’s not enough to get me to want to rush out and buy up a bunch of the ‘Freemaker Adventure’ Lego sets, it’s great fun to get a character from a different part of the Star Wars franchise.

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 5: Outcasts

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 5 – Outcasts

The Premise – In the opening of this episode of The West Wing… wait, sorry, I got confused with the walking and talking aspect of the level. Del and Iden have decided to surrender to the New Republic forces and after being interrogated, General Lando Calrissian meets with you to offer two X-Wings to just fly away and not be bothered by either side again but that all changes when a distress signal comes from Naboo. Operation Cinder has arrived.

Iden and Del join the fight with Shriv as Danger Squadron to help the three N1 Starfighters against the Star Destroyer and the Operation Cinder satellites.

Danger Squadron destroy the satellites and the provide cover for the Y-Wings as they take out the Star Destroyer’s shields, giving the New Republic Capital Ship the opening it needs to destroy the Imperial Vessel.

The Gameplay – This is your first mission flying an X-Wing. Whilst the controls are the same when flying any of the ships they all feel different, which is a testament to the game developers and their attention to detail. The mission does start with another slow walk and talk dialogue sequence where you walk through the Capital Ship. It’s tedious but if you want you can have a look at the design of the ships interior.

Easter Eggs – The whole mission is one long Easter Egg and it’s great. When you arrive at Naboo you are right in the middle of the third issue of ‘Shattered Empire’ the three N1 Starfighters are being piloted by Princess Leia, Shara Bey (lead character in the mini-series and Poe Dameron’s mum) and Naboo’s Queen Soruna. Dialogue between Leia and Lando is lifted from the comic. The mission expands on the battle slightly but it doesn’t effect the overall story being told.

This mission is a prime example of the Star Wars Story Group doing what they do best, making everything fit together to make the whole of the Star Wars Universe timeline come together neatly.

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‘Tis The Season to Build Lego – Day 10

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Drumroll please… today’s little gift is…

A Blaster Turret. It moves up and down and fires the transparent red stud.

It’s a Blaster Turret.

Yeah…

So let’s see what tomorrow brings shall we?

It does look cool though, with the piece on the side that looks like a sight.

The handles are too wide for a mini-fig to hold.

OK, I’ll admit, I’m a bit underwhelmed with today’s offering. Roll on tomorrow.

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#Collection Corner – Rebels Pop! Vinyl Ghost Crew

When it was announced that we would be getting Star Wars: Rebels Pop! Vinyl figures I was ecstatic. I wouldn’t say I was a Rebels fan from day one but once I finally started watching it around the time Season One finished I was hooked.

It was one of the few times I ever pre-ordered a set all in one go but I had to make sure I got them all (like Pokemon). I had them shipped to my work and I think that was the happiest I had looked in the office in a long time. Of course, as soon as I got them home they came out of the box and got put on the shelves.

Kanan Jarrus has his Season 1 and 2 look, with goatee and cool armour on his arm. I would like to see a Season 3 or 4 look with the full beard and mask. The lightsaber hilt is perfectly detailed as well as his shoulder plate.

They have used a variation of the usual hero pose that we got with the early Pop! figures.

The Hera figure is incredibly detailed, the outfit looks great and the colour around her eyes really adds depth to the paint job. My only complaint is that the figure is too top heavy. I used to display my Pop! figures without the bases to maximise space but when I got this one out of the box and it couldn’t stand up so I had to rearrange the collection.

Ezra is in an action pose, wielding his lightsaber and using the force. He is, like Kanan, in his Season 1 and 2 outfit. The details on which look great, with all of the details visible on all the different parts of the costume. The lightsaber looks really good. The only problem I can see is the way the legs/ankles are posed, to me the stance looks a bit off.

Call me a fake fan if you like but I can’t tell if this Sabine outfit is from Season 1 or 2. Oops. But the detail looks great, the colour on her armour and hair looks great, the hair especially is so vivid and stands out on my shelf. Her pose is very character accurate and the blasters look great. Again though, the pose doesn’t lend itself to being displayed without the base.

I have to say that out of the whole Ghost Crew Pop! collection, this is the most disappointing. I’m really not so keen on the face sculpt, I know it’s been Funko-fied but it doesn’t ring home for me. The rest of the figure looks great with all of the detail and colour.

Chopper! I have a Dave Filoni Pop! Vinyl!!! This figure is so detailed it’s amazing. Every bit of it looks brilliant and it’s become a favourite of my 19 month old daughter. Almost every night she has to hug and kiss a handful of my Pop! figures and Chopper is one of the usual suspects.

Like I said, I was excited for this set and even though I’m not keen on the Zeb sculpt I love having the whole crew together. They really show off the exceptional level of detail Funko give their figures which makes them a pleasure to collect.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

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‘Tis the Season to Build Lego – Day 9

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Drumroll please… today’s little gift is…

A fantastic representation of General Grievous’s Starfighter. This was seen in ‘The Clone Wars’ and in ‘Revenge of the Sith’ and it’s the ship that Obi-Wan used to escape Kashyyyk after Order 66.

It looks great and is, like most of these mini-sets, very accurate for its size. It is the second time this has been featured in an Advent Calendar, the last time was 2012 and it has been seriously improved since then.

Very pleased with this one, been on a bit of a Prequel-Era roll the last few days. I wonder what we will get next.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

If you would like to hear the ‘Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) please visit the Bandcamp Page HERE.

‘Tis the Season to Build Lego – Day 8

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And on the eighth day of Christmas, Lego gave to me…

A Prequel-Era B1 Battle Droid with Blaster.

Back when The Phantom Menace came out I got a few of these, and I had a couple of complaints. The blasters were held sideways and the blasters just looked awful. They were black megaphones with a red stud at the front. The second complaint was they weren’t sturdy at all, the connections got loose very quickly and soon the mini-figs were bent double or their heads were flopping down, and they could barely keep the blaster up.

This new one however seems a lot sturdier, the mini-fig itself looks very similar to the 1999 design with the exception of the blast hand being moulded to hold the blaster correctly. And the blaster, whilst being generic, looks good with this figure.

It’s nice to be getting more Prequel-Era stuff from this Advent Calendar and I’m being tempted to pick up some Prequel-Era sets in the future. Beside that, I’m looking forward to what’s behind Door Number 9 tomorrow…

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

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‘Tis the Season to Build Lego – Day 7

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s buildable bundle of joy is…

The N1 Starfighter from ‘The Phantom Menace’. More Prequel love! This makes me happy.

This mini-build has been in a previous Advent Calendar back in 2012 with no changes to its design, which is a credit to the original designer, especially since there have been five different versions between 1999 and 2015. Not as many as the X-Wing or TIE Fighter but still considerable.

A solid little build and again instantly recognisable which is good, maybe because of the colours used but the ship itself is well known.

Check back tomorrow to find out what lies behind Door Number 8.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews -The Clone Wars: Season 2 Disc 1 Part 2

Rather than write about The Clone Wars episodes individually or by story-arc, I have decided to review it by disc as they are in the Blu-Ray Box Set releases.

In this post the episodes I will be talking about are Senate Spy, Landing at Point Rain, Weapons Factory, Legacy of Terror and Brain Invaders.

Senate Spy puts Padme and Anakin’s relationship in the forefront of the episode. Padme is asked by the Jedi Council to spy on the representative of the Banking Clan, Rush Clovis, whom is suspected to be working with the Separatists. Anakin finds out that she was asked because of her and Clovis having a previous relationship. She begins to ‘rekindle’ their romance and joins Clovis on a trip to Cato Nemoidia where Clovis is meeting with the Nemoidian Senator Lott Dodd (secretly a meeting of the Separatist Leaders). Anakin disguises himself as Padme’s pilot to protect her. Padme is poisoned after Lott Dodd is displeased of her being around, but she is able to steal Separatist secrets and get them to Anakin before fainting due to the poison. Clovis tries to blackmail Dodd to get her the antidote and resorts to threatening his life, they get the antidote and Anakin is allowed to take Padme from Cato Nemoidia for medical attention.

After the Holocron story arc this episode is a bit of a slump in terms of story quality but it gives more insight to the relationship between Anakin and Padme. Padme becomes jealous when Anakin is called away to the Jedi Council, even though she understands that duty sometimes has to come first, no matter what, which she comes to realise during her mission. I do like that we get to see Padme getting more screen time. She was sorely underused in Revenge of the Sith once the Rebellion storyline was cut from the film but episodes like this and last seasons Blue Shadow Virus arc really gives us the opportunity to get more insight into her character and some history of what she was doing between Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. I also love that she is becoming a go-to spy for the Jedi Council, putting them at odds with Anakin.

Landing at Point Rain takes us back to Geonosis where Poggle the Lesser has restarted production on the Separatist Battle Droids and its up to a Anakin, Ahsoka, Obi-Wan and Ki-Adi Mundi to lead an invasion to shut down production once and for all.

The Jedi make a plan to land forces at three points and meet near the Droid Factory which is under a heavy duty shield.

Once the drop ships are launched they fall under attack from all fronts and are overwhelmed and the Gunships are either destroyed, crash land or are forced to land, leaving the Republic Army far from their target.

Obi-Wan is injured, and their forces severely depleted, all requests for reinforcements are denied until they are close enough to the target.

Anakin, Ahsoka, Rex and their team come across a large fortification and after a few losses they are able to infiltrate and destroy it before making it to Obi-Wan’s position and the Republic fighters are able to break through and give air support.

Ki-Adi Mundi’s team have to make their way through dark tunnels full of Geonosian soldiers, it takes time but they make it.

This is a tense episode. There are real stakes with the Republic forces being completely overwhelmed by the Geonosians. The one thing that would have made it that bit more tense is that rather than Ki-Adi Mundi, another known Jedi who we don’t see in Revenge of the Sith could have been used to up the stakes for the audience.

Weapons Factory continues the Geonosis story arc, whilst briefing the Troopers, Ahsoka is constantly interrupted by Anakin who thinks he his helping, leading them to argue. The argument is witnessed by Jedi Master Luminara Unduli and her Padawan Bariss Offee who have a much more ‘traditional’ Master/Apprentice relationship. They plan a coordinated attack where Anakin and Luminara will divert the Droid Armies attention whilst Ahsoka and Bariss sneak through the catacombs beneath the Droid Factory and destroy it from the inside.

Bariss leads Ahsoka through the catacombs and into the power chamber for the Droid Factory as Anakin, Luminara and the Clones take on the Droids. The Separatists unleash their new ‘Heavy Tanks’ which are impervious to blaster-fire. Anakin and Luminara decide to blow up the bridge that the tanks have stopped on, between their position and the Factory.

Inside, Ahsoka and Bariss have set bombs around the power core but a Geonosian spots the and informs Poggle the Lesser who leads a battalion of Droids and a Heavy Tank into the chamber and getting rid of the explosives. Poggle leaves and their Padawans battle the Droids and commandeer the Tank. They use the tank to destroy the power core which causes the factory to fall apart but also traps Ahsoka and Bariss in the tank under the rubble, injured and with limited air.

Anakin and Luminara search for their apprentices and they finally get a breakthrough when Ahsoka uses Star Wars Morse Code to give their location. Luminara and Anakin raise the rubble allowing Ahsoka and Bariss to get free.

This, for me is the last good episode of the Geonosis storylines in this season. It really develops the relationship between Anakin and Ashoka and his growing trust and confidence in her skills as a leader and a Jedi.

It’s also interesting to see the difference in the teaching methods and relationship between a more conventional Jedi Master and their apprentice in Luminara and Bariss than that of Anakin and Ahsoka, and we come to understand that Anakin’s training was vastly different under Obi-Wan, probably because of Anakin’s advanced age when joining the Jedi Order. Anakin’s inability to let go of someone he cares about is highlighted when he refuses to leave the area until Ahsoka is found, even if it compromises their mission or the safety of his troops.

And then we get to the final two episodes on the disc. I’ll be honest they are not my favourites by far. In ‘Legacy of Terror’ Poggle the Lesser is still on the run and a sandstorm arrives. Luminara takes her Clone Commander into the sandstorm on Speeder Bikes. They reach a Genosian hive and whilst communicating with Anakin, Obi-Wan and Ki-Adi Mundi Luminara is attacked.

When the storm passes Anakin and Obi-Wan arrive with Rex, Cody and some troopers and search for Master Luminara. They are attacked by Zombie Geonosians. Yes, you read that right. Zombie Geonosians. They can’t be stopped by blasters. They only stop when cut down by lightsabers. Zombie Geonosians.

After escaping the first hoard they manage to locate Luminara, Poggle the Lesser, more Zombies and a Geonosian Queen. The Queen wants to infect Luminara with a brain worm (the cause of the Zombification). Obi-Wan want to study it, Anakin wants to fight and escape. They fight and escape, Obi-Wan tries to take a worm but Anakin kills it. They capture Poggle the Lesser and destroy the Queen’s underground chamber and presumably the Queen as well.

Fricking Zombie Geonosians!!!

‘Brain Invaders’ follows on directly, Mace Windu needs supplies and Anakin offers that Ahsoka and Bariss take a medical ship to meet Kit Fiston to pick up the supplies and then meet Mace Windu whilst Anakin, Obi-Wan, Luminara and Ki-Adi Mundi take Poggle the Lesser to Coruscant.

Before leaving with Ahsoka and Bariss, a Clone Trooper is infected by a surviving brain worm.

You see where this is going right?

Brain worms take over the Clones and eventually Bariss whilst Ahsoka hides and survives. Yeah… big shock.

Anakin tries to find out how to stop the worms and interrogates Poggle who is defiant until Anakin unleashes his darker tendencies and starts to force choke the Geonosian Leader. He finds out that the worms can stand the cold.

Ahsoka turns on the air conditioner and sets it to sub-zero whilst the ship is about to dock with the supply station. Zombie Bariss attack’s her as it gets colder and colder.

The ship docks, Master Fisto boards the ship rescuing the crew, the worms are dead and the supply mission is a success.

Fricking Zombie Worms!

Now, there are some really good parts to these episodes and I understand what Lucas and Filoni had in mind, wanting to introduce different genres into the franchise, so my disliking of this storyline is purely because it just isn’t my cup of tea. Everything in ‘Legacy of Terror’ up until the brain worms is good. I like the idea behind the brain worms and the hive mind but the whole Zombie aspect just doesn’t play well with me. Even then it gives us some fun moments with Obi-Wan and Anakin as they try to decide where the brain worm enters the host as Poggle approaches Luminara with a freshy hatched Zombie maker.

However, ‘Brain Invaders’, for me at least, has one good moment, when Anakin interrogates Poggle using force choke. It’s really just one of those small moments which we get through The Clone Wars that just shows Anakin’s turn is gradual and not just Palpatine’s machinations in ‘Revenge of the Sith’. Aside from that I can take-or-leave this episode.

A mixed bag of episodes that round out the second half of the first disc of this season but in all my years of watching TV I don’t think I have seen one season of 22 episodes where they have all been fantastic, and as I have said the qualms aren’t about the quality of those episodes but really just my own preferences.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 6

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s mini bundle of buildable joy is…

A mini-Cloud City with Cloud Car.

What’s great about this build it that it’s instantly recognisable and, despite the major scale differences between the Cloud Car and Cloud City itself the set looks really, really good.

What I am loving about these mini-builds is that the designers have used parts you’d never have thought of putting together and made some great mini Star Wars sets.

The Cloud Car looks great and it’s built out of three parts, two of which are clear 1×1 studs that act as windows.

And now I want the ‘Betrayal at Cloud City’ set even more now… so help me out by visiting Patreon or Bandcamp using the links below.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

If you would like to hear the ‘Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) please visit the Bandcamp Page HERE.

‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 5

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And today’s mystery build is…

The Droid Bounty Hunter IG-88 from ‘The Empire Strikes Back’ who featured in the infamous scene where Vader sends the Bounty Hunters after the Millennium Falcon.

IG-88 was last featured in the 2017 set ‘Bounty Hunters Battle Pack’ the only difference between the two mini-figs is that the Advent Calendar figure features a standard model blaster where the Battle Pack version has a Stud Launcher blaster.

I do like the buildable Droid mini-figs. The first I ever encountered was in 1999, the Pit Droid that came in the ‘Anakin’s Podracer’ set from the first wave of sets from The Phantom Menace.

Will tomorrow bring us another mini-fig or a mini-build. Either way I can’t wait to find out.

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If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXVI – Where All Good Plans Go Wrong… Sort Of.

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

This week I talk my way through an hour and fifty minutes of The Last Jedi but only recorded an hour (oops). The second part of the Commentary will be available in next weeks episode (I promise). Don’t forget you can purchase The Life Debt Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) from http://mystarwarslifedebt.bandcamp.com

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 4

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

And behind door number four…

Finally some Prequel Era love with the Republic Fighter Tank. This is a mini-version of a set that was released in 2017 and included the recent Aayla Secura mini-fig.

It wasn’t a set I was vastly interested in, there were other sets I was after in the same price range and then more sets came out so it got pushed further and further down my list.

That being said I may have to pick it up soon seeing as it is being retired next year.

Anyway, this mini-version looks really good and is instantly recognisable and makes great use of its limited size and parts to still have some good details.

Now we’ve had some love for all era’s of Star Wars I wonder who or what we will be getting next. Check back tomorrow to find out.

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If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 4: The Storm

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 4 – The Storm.

The Premise – Inferno Squad have been sent to Iden’s homeworld of Vardos to extract Protectorate Gleb, who taught both Iden and Hask in their youth.

When they arrive at Vardos they find ‘The Dauntless’ and the Operation Cinder satellites. Iden goes to her father who orders that Operation Cinder start and orders Iden to do her mission.

On Vardos, Iden, Del and Hask go to the Archive all the whole discussing the effect of Operation Cinder whilst watching Stormtroopers round up civilians.

When they reach Gleb the team falls apart. Iden and Del want to save as many as possible, Hask is determined to follow the Admiral’s orders and extract only Gleb. Iden shoots Hask in the leg and free the rest of the survivors, leaving Hask and Gleb.

Del and Iden encounter Imperials in their way back to the Corvus, having to fight their way through the Imperial soldiers, eventually hijacking an AT-AT.

After a last stand at the landing platform, Iden, Del, the survivors and the crew of the Corvus escape.

Agent Hask extracts Gleb and the Admiral promotes him to Commander, Iden’s former rank.

Gameplay – The opening part of the mission is slow paced to allow for the exposition as you walk through the streets on Vardos towards the Archive where you meet Gleb and all in a third-person view. After the cutscene you can return to playing in first-person if you want.

Later in the level you are able to control the cannons on the AT-AT which is true to the films and moves slowly but has tremendous firepower. Once in the vehicle you are nigh indestructible and can happily blow Stormtroopers, AT-ST’s, AA Canons and even another AT-AT to kingdom come. Which is fun and oddly cathartic.

Easter Eggs – Again we witness Operation Cinder from the ‘Shattered Empire’ comics. The character of Protectorate Gleb was featured in the tie-in novel ‘Star Wars: Battlefront – Inferno Squadron.

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If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

If you would like to hear the ‘Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) please visit the Bandcamp Page HERE.

‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 3

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Today’s buildable treat was…

The Arrowhead Starship from ‘Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures’.

I’ll be perfectly honest, I have very little knowledge about this series. I have seen a handful from Season 1 and one episode of Season 2, which ironically was the episode where the lead character (Rowan) visits a lost Jedi city and has a vision of the ‘Arrowhead’ which at some point he has to build before the Emperor can get his hands on it. I may be wrong but those are my impressions.

At some point I will get around to watching the series and doing some posts about them, like the current Clone Wars reviews I am doing.

But yet again no Prequel Love, seeing as Freemakers is set between Empire and Jedi. Fingers crossed for tomorrow.

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If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

If you would like to hear the ‘Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) please visit the Bandcamp Page HERE.

Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 3: The Observatory

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 3 – The Observatory.

The Premise – Del is sent to Pilio, where a building called ‘The Observatory’ that had some importance to The Emperor is locates. Del’s mission is to destroy it.

On Pilio, a familiar R2 unit watches as the Empire arrives on the planet, a few beeps and boils and Luke Skywalker steps forward.

From here you play as Luke Skywalker, making his way across the planet, taking out Stormtroopers using your lightsaber and force abilities until you come across Del who is encased in some weird bug slime that hardens like concrete.

Once Del is free the two work together to reach the Observatory, at time when Del is working on some mechanical doohickey it’s your job as Luke to protect him from the onslaught of bugs that attack.

Once in the Observatory, Del realised that, after the door can only be opened using the Force that the Emperor was in fact a Force user and before he blows the place up according to his orders, Luke asks if he can take a compass he has been drawn to by the Force. Del allows it and they go their separate ways.

The Gameplay – To allow the player to fully enjoy playing as a hero character the vantage point is set as 3rd person, like when using heroes in the multiplayer levels. Aside from that the gameplay is the same as the rest of the levels.

Easter Eggs – This mission has a lot of them which is great fun. Firstly, this is set around the time of the Shattered Empire mini-series which has Luke travelling to various Imperial installations looking for Jedi Artefacts, the compass he picks up in this level is later shown in The Last Jedi in Luke’s hut on Ahch-To.

The bugs you encounter are very similar, if not the same as the ones that Thrawn and Vader encounter on Battu in ‘Thrawn Alliances’ which manage to slow Vader down during a fight in a bar.

Del also talks about that as a youngster the Imperials taught children that the Jedi were evil and is shocked to learn that Palpatine was in fact a Force user.

It’s a fun level, running around killing stuff with a Lightsaber and full of stuff for fans but I have issues. I’m not a fan of the Luke model and the voice actor could do a better job. I would have liked to get Mark Hamill back for it. He voiced an episode of Forces of Destiny, couldn’t he have done this too?

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 2

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Today’s buildable treat was…

Star Wars: The Last Jedi mini-fig, Rose Tico.

This is the second time this Rose mini-fig has been released, the first was last years The Last Jedi set ‘Resistance Transport Pod’ which was part of the first wave released on last years Force Friday.

It’s a good mini-fig, the details on her overalls are good, with lots of pouches on her belt and a custom hair-piece rounds off the look with a nicely accurate mini-fig. She even comes with a blaster and reversible head with alternate expression.

So far we have had both the Original Trilogy and Sequel Trilogies be represented with this years Advent Calendar, will tomorrow bring us some Prequel Trilogy love? Check back tomorrow to find out.

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‘Tis The Season To Build Lego – Day 1

The run-up to Christmas has arrived and with it the all important Advent Calendar.

This year, my Wife, the Saint, the Expert Gifter, the Gift-Giving Goddess has bought me the Lego Star Wars Advent Calendar and with it she has also given all of you dear readers 24 days of Blog Posts.

Today’s Lego Surprise was…

Luke’s Landspeeder from ‘A New Hope’.

It’s an impressive little build with nice little details using the 1×1 round bricks to add the red tones and the 4×4 round piece to make up the grille at the front.

As the first gift of the month it’s one that all fans will recognise, and I’m especially happy with it because I love the Landspeeder Lego. It’s my third one after the original version in 1999 and then the more recent one from 2017.

Like I said, a great start to the Advent Calendar and I can’t wait to find out what tomorrow brings.

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#Collection Corner – Cloud Rider Swoop Bikes Lego Review

The Saint has done it again.

My wife was doing an online Tesco shop and asked if I wanted anything. Me being me, I know what Star Wars Lego our local branch has in stock so I casually threw out Yoda’s Hut.

Later on, she turned up at my work and asked me to pick the shopping up after work and hands me her card and said that I could go in and buy the set. I pondered this but then said there was another set I would prefer at the same price on Amazon. I sent her the link and the next day it arrived.

Now, going back a few months I wrote a #SoloSunday post about potential Lego sets that I would have liked to see (HERE) which I got mostly spot on, one of those sets was essentially this one.

Anyways.

The Cloud-Rider Swoop Bikes set comes with 355 pieces, which isn’t bad for a £25.99 price. Granted most of them are small pieces but we are also getting some very customised pieces for the mini-figures so the price, in my opinion, is justified.

Inside the box is three bags of pieces, two instruction booklets and a sheet of 14 stickers.

The first instruction booklet is Weazel’s Swoop which is split into two bags. The second booklet covers Bag 3 which is Enfys Nest’s Swoop.

Bag 1 contains the Weazel mini-fig, his Swoop Bike and a Coaxium container. Having built a couple of Speeder Bike sets this one was quite refreshing to have such great detail and interesting building techniques. The engine at the back looks amazing and it’s such a simple idea but done in a new and visually stunning way. And for a Swoop bike the size is pretty good, it’s quite long which makes it very screen accurate.

The Weazel mini-fig looks great. The helmet design is spot on and very well detailed. The head inside is solid black which gives the visor some depth. He comes with a large blaster which was previously used for the Shoretrooper figures with the Rogue One sets and it nicely attaches to the side of his Swoop so it’s not loose during play. The figure has the short ‘child’ legs which fit the character because he was played by Warwick Davies.

Bag 2 consists of the ‘side car’ to Weazel’s Swoop which come with some man looking blasters. I happened to be watching ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ as I built this and did notice this during the Conveyex heist scene, it’s the Swoop that goes under the AT-Hauler, allowing the passenger to get on the ship and attacks Rio (may he rest in peace).

When connected to the Swoop Bike it makes it look incredibly intimidating as a vehicle, forget Moloch’s Speeder, I wouldn’t want to get chased by this.

Bag 2 also gives us the second Tobias Beckett mini-fig, this time in his usual outfit and two blasters. My favourite part of this figure has got to be the hair-piece. That looks so spot on to the characters hair from the film.

Bag 3 gives us the icing on the cake, Enfys Nest’s Swoop, again it is incredibly detailed and well put together, but the biggest draw for this Bag, or even the whole set is the Enfys Nest mini-fig.

The mini-fig is, yet again, brilliantly detailed. The head under the mask is a solid black head which is my biggest gripe, I would have liked to see the characters face under there with a separate hair piece like the Kylo Ren mini-fig from the Maz’s Castle set. Her weapon is nicely put together using pre-existing weapons from other collections but it looks pretty accurate.

Enfys’s mask is glorious. The little details like the Aurabesh poem and ridges on the crest make it stand out. The mask is made of softer material, most likely to avoid people stabbing themselves on it.

Overall, this is a great little set with interesting builds and fantastic mini-figs and I’m really pleased I got it. I’m usually opposed to buying the £25(ish) sets because they can be quite hit-or-miss in terms of piece content or size but this time around I’m more than happy that I payed full price. Like I mentioned earlier, I wish we got Enfys Nest’s unmasked face as well but hey, maybe in another wave.

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The Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan)

Today’s the day ladies and gents.

The bonus episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now available to the public.

Listen as I watch and comment on the Star Wars Holiday Special and try to comprehend what I am seeing.

All you have to do is visit the BANDCAMP page and for the low price of £3 / $3.85 you can listen to my pain.

If this is successful then I will produce more bonus content.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXV – The Quarter Century Celebration

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

This week I talk about my thoughts on the future of The Clone Wars after Season 7. I discuss Resistance Episode 7 ‘Synara’s Score’. I go back to the Collection Corner with an overpriced book and I reveal a clip of the Life Debt Holiday Special (aka The Breaking of a Fan) available from http://mystarwarslifedebt.bandcamp.com on Friday 30th November.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 2: The Dauntless

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 2 – The Dauntless.

The Premise – Your mission is to protect the Fondor Shipyards where the Star Destroyer ‘The Dauntless’ is docked. The Dauntless is integral to Operation Conder, a contingency plan the Emperor has put in place in the event of his death, but the Shipyards have been targeted by the New Republic.

Iden and Hask take TIE Fighters and engage the Republic forces before Iden manages to board the Mon Calamari Capital Ship and makes her way through to the Ion Cannon control room where she is joined by Hask and they hold of Republic troops whilst the Droid slices the controls and ejects the canons power cores which Iden and Hask destroy.

Once they have sabotaged the Ion Canons they escape the ship and The Dauntless escapes into hyperspace and with it the satellites for Operation Cinder.

The Gameplay – Much like the previous levels really, it alternates between piloting a fighter and ground combat and we don’t have much difference in gameplay at this point other than when controlling the Hero characters (Luke, Leia, Han and Lando).

Easter Eggs – Operation Cinder is the biggest Easter Egg in the Mission, it is one of the Emperor’s contingency plans that was introduced in the Shattered Empire comic series by Greg Rucka and will feature heavily in a few more levels.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews -The Clone Wars: Season 2 Disc 1 Part 1

Rather than write about The Clone Wars episodes individually or by story-arc, I have decided to review it by disc as they are in the Blu-Ray Box Set releases.

In this post the episodes I will be talking about are Holocron Heist, Cargo of Doom and Children of the Force

The first three episodes make up the first arc of the second season.In Holocron Heist Ahsoka is made to work in the Jedi Temple library as a security office after disobeying both Anakin and Obi-Wan during a battle on Felicia, endangering her life and the lives of her soldiers. Meanwhile Darth Sidious hires Cad Bane (YAY!!!) to break into the Jedi Temple and steal a Jedi Holocron. Bane hires another bounty hunter, a shapeshifter who disguises herself as a Jedi who infiltrates the Temple and give Bane the directions he needs to get himself and his droid TODO into the ventilation shaft. Yoda senses the intruders and sends Obi-Wan and Anakin after them. From there it becomes a game of cat and mouse. Ahsoka discovers the shapeshifter after she disguises herself as Madame Jocasta Nu. Cad Bane escapes with a Holocron and his associate names the next target, a Jedi Master with a data crystal that contains the names of the Force Sensitive children across the galaxy.

Cargo of Doom is set not long after, Bane is in control of a Separatist Cruiser after capturing the Jedi Master with the data crystal, with Anakin, Ahsoka and Obi-Wan in pursuit in their Republic Venator cruiser. They incapacitate Bane’s ship and, against Admiral Yularin’s advice Anakin comes up with a plan to board the ship. Once on board the game of cat-and-mouse continues. Bane has killed the Jedi Master and and after splitting the heroes up manages to take Ahsoka hostage and threatens to kill her if Anakin doesn’t unlock the Holocron. Anakin relents and gives the bounty hunter what he wants. The ship is starting to break apart and the race to escape begins, with only a handful of clones left, Anakin, Ahsoka and Obi-Wan escape the ship just in time, believing that Cad Bane and the Holocron were destroyed in the explosion.

Children of the Force begins immediately after, Anakin and Rex discover alien blood on the shuttle on which they escaped in the previous episode and find out the Cad Bane had stolen a dead Clone’s armour. They realise this too late and Bane escapes in a Republic Fighter. Anakin, Obi-Wan, Mace Windu and Yoda use the force to determine which of the children are in most danger, a Nautillian child who’s fate is unknown, a Rodian child and a Gungan child are being targeted.

Anakin and Ahsoka go to Naboo whilst Obi-Wan goes to Rodia. Kenobi is too late, Bane has just kidnapped the child. Anakin and Ahsoka are able to save the Gungan child however and capture Bane’s Starfighter and then Bane himself. Anakin, Obi-Wan and Mace Windu interrogate him by relentlessly bombarding him with Jedi Mind Tricks but are only able to determine the location of the stolen Holocron when Bane gives them the location of his own free will.

Anakin and Ahsoka find out that Bane has been taking the children to Mustafar using his Starfighters fuel logs. Bane takes Obi-Wan and Mace to retrieve the Holocron but the Jedi are caught in a trap whilst Anakin and Ahsoka go to Mustafar where Darth Sidious is planning on turning the children into Dark Side spies. The two Jedi rescue the children and the base self-destructs around them. Bane escapes and Sidious’s plot is never fully revealed but the future of the Jedi is safe… for now.

This is a fantastic story arc and an amazingly strong opening for the second season.

It really shows the sinister depths of Sidious’s plot for galactic domination and is touched upon again in Rebels Season Two. It also gives us a great look at Cad Bane’s skills as a bounty hunter and mercenary.

One big thing we can take from this episode is that the way of the Jedi is becoming darker than they would like to admit during the war, the way Obi-Wan, Mace and Anakin essentially torture Cad Bane is disturbing, especially when they are the heroes. And finally, we get to see some tension between Anakin and Yularen, something which will come into play later in the series.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews – Return of the Jedi

I finally got around to my Return of the Jedi rewatch and I realised how much I had missed this film.

It’s so fun and exciting.

I had to watch it over multiple sessions, most of which between 6.15 – 6.45 AM when I wake up and lay in bed contemplating the day ahead, which is more fun when Star Wars is on, so it took a while.

I don’t fully remember my first time watching the film when I was younger but as a child I remember I enjoyed this one the most for the action. As I got older I moved more to the Empire Strikes Back camp. The one this I do remember about that first viewing was that during the Battle of Endor when the Ewoks are under attack from the AT-ST’s a pair of Ewoks are caught in an explosion. One survives and tries to wake the other up and the cries when they realise the other is dead. That broke me as a kid and I wept. What made it worse was that I thought the dead Ewok was Wicket! I mean dude! Talk about the relief I felt when he came back later on.

Another time I watched it, when I was a bit older, I was watching it in bed and when Vader asks Like to take off his mask I started to well up. Something about it just hit me, Vader had returned to being Anakin Skywalker and he was good and loved his children. Boy did that do a number on me that night.

Return of the Jedi always captured my attention, all of the creatures in Jabba’s Palace just fascinated me and I wanted to know as much about them as possible. When I read ‘The Essential Guide to Characters’ I dove right in to Jabba’s goons. I have no clue why but I really liked Ephant Mon.

I was the right age to enjoy the Ewoks, and still do. In get that the concept of these little Teddy Bear creatures taking down the Empire is far-fetched but come on, it’s Star Wars not real life. Plus the Woklings are adorable.

As a child I was in absolute awe of the whole third act. The ground battle was like nothing I had ever seen before and then the space battle took that awe and ramped it up to 11 and finally the Luke/Vader/Palpatine had me on edge. I was honestly afraid for Luke. Would he turn? Would he die? And in that moment where Vader threatens to turn Leia and Luke gives in to his anger, everything from the choreography of the dual to the music filled me with wonder and dread. Could Luke really turn? But of course hope returns when he throws his weapon down and defies the Emperor.

The story isn’t just about Luke at this point and when Vader saves his son and kills his master you know you can finally relax… for a moment that is because Lando and the Falcon are still in danger.

The great thing about all three parts of the final act is that anything could happen to any of the main characters. It feels like Lando’s death and the destruction of the Falcon is being set up from the scene in the Home One hanger bay between Han and Lando. And in the ground battle Leia and R2 are both shot by Stormtroopers (now those two Stormtroopers deserve medals for actually hitting something). It is only by sheer dumb luck (and Chewie stealing an AT-ST with a couple of Ewoks) that the Rebels got in the Shield Generator Bunker at all.

Of course the film isn’t all action. We get some very important scenes which really showcase the acting talent of Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher and Harrison Ford in a way that we don’t really get from the previous two films.

Again Hamill kills it whilst acting with a puppet in the Yoda death scene which confirms Vader’s revelation from Empire Strikes Back which leads to Luke and Obi-Wan talking about Anakin/Vader which also reveals Luke and Leia to be twins. This leads to a beautiful scene between Luke and Leia on Endor which is so touching and heartfelt it really hits you in the feels and gives Carrie Fisher a brilliant moment to shine.

The creature work is amazing too, a massive step up from the already brilliant Cantina scene from A New Hope, this time we get Jabba’s Palace and in it we are introduced to a whole myriad of creatures all are people in outfits or large puppets. Jabba’s himself if an impressive feat of puppetry, with seven people inside to operate him. The Rancor again a puppet, filmed at high speed to simulate a large living monster. And then, to top it off we have Admiral Ackbar and the rest of the Mon Cala race on board Home One and Lando’s co-pilot Nein Numb.

Of course, like A New Hope and Empire Strikes Back we have had a few revisions to the film made by George Lucas through the years. Jedi Rocks, the new music from Jabba’s Palace is a bit much especially with the new CGI version of Sy Snootles the singer, the addition of Joh Yowzah the other singer and a brand new song and dance number… not the best really.

The beak that now comes out of the Sarlaac Pit makes the whole sequence not work, it felt a lot scarier when it was just an open mouth in the desert.

For the Blu-Ray editions Lucas had blinking eyelids added to the Ewoks… utterly pointless.

Lucas had the original final musical number changed from Yub Nub to a much more melodic tune and had scenes of celebration from around the Galaxy added, including Bespin, Tatooine and Coruscant. Naboo was added in the DVD releases in 2004 as was the Senate and Jedi Temple buildings to the Coruscant skyline. This was the one change I could understand, it makes the Rebels victory feel much bigger and shows the Empire’s grip on the Galaxy begin to crumble.

And finally… Hayden Christensen as Force Ghost Anakin. He looks incredibly uncomfortable and out of place, which after a few years of harsh criticism it came to light that there was very little direction given to him for this moment. Should it have been added? I can’t decide. It’s not like Luke would recognise the younger Anakin but at the same time it brings the two trilogies together.

Return of the Jedi beautifully closes the Original Trilogy and leaves enough story untold that we could get new stories in the future, which of course we have many times over with the Expanded Universe/Legends stories, the new Canon novels and of course the Sequel Trilogy.

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#Collection Corner – Lego Anakin’s Starfighter

The Saint Strikes Back!!!

I made a hint at the fact that Amazon.co.uk had some deals on Lego, I put it forward that U was interested in this set and lo-and-behold the following day… ta-daaaa.

Yes my wife got me another set. This time it was Anakin’s Jedi Starfighter from The Clone Wars.

With an RRP of £25.99 we got it on amazon for around £18 (the price has now gone back up to £24).

The set features 247 pieces, an instruction booklet and a sheet of seven stickers.

Bag 1 gives us the Anakin mini-fig and the central core of the ship. It uses a nice mix of light and dark greys and yellow pieces which makes it a fun build with the extra colour. When built the core feels quite long (for a set of this size) which is good.

The Anakin figure is depicted in his Clone Wars outfit and he is wearing a comm-unit on his head which is featured on both sides. The hair piece looks accurate with the characters hair from the series. In the previous version of this set, the Anakin mini-fig looked more cartoony but Lego have decided to avoid that this time around so the mini-fig won’t look out of place in a larger collection.

Bag 2 builds the details for the core, including the slot for R2-D2, the cockpit as well as the rear fin and one of the wings. The details made from smaller bricks really give this set a realistic vibe and a huge improvement on the very first iteration of the Jedi Starfighter Lego from 2002’s Attack of the Clones line of sets.

One thing I was pleasantly surprised by was the printed console for the cockpit, which reminded me of the sets from 1999 which all had printed pieces rather than stickers.

Bag 3 completes the ship with the other wing, engines and R2-D2!!!

The completed set looks great, it’s swooshable, a good size for the price and very screen accurate. A much better looking set than the recent ‘Jedi Starfighter with Hyperspace Ring’ that just really rubs me up the wrong way, but I’ll stop talking about that now.

The engines are nicely detailed with green blocks made to look like the engines are working which I think works really well.

And I absolutely love the fact that the designer gave us somewhere to store the lightsaber.

And of course, R2-D2. The design had changed since first released in 1999 and the recent version (which also came with Yoda’s Starfighter) looks so much better, although now he is a staple on all Lego collectors displays, he’s such a lovable character I say the more the merrier… and the fact that if the Astromech Droids aren’t displayed in the ships they just look wrong.

Definitely a great set and even at the RRP of £25 well worth it, and seeing as ‘The Clone Wars’ is coming back to our screens, this is the herald for a few more TCW themed sets, anyone up for a new version of ‘The Twilight’?

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXIV – Lego My Reylo

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

This week I talk Mandalorian news, I throw my hat in the ring over #Reylo, I commiserate the upcoming retirement of a lot of Star Wars Lego and I make an announcement.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 1: The Battle of Endor

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game. This time I will go through Mission 1 – The Battle of Endor.

The Premise – Above Endor the Executor has crashed into the Death Star. On the planet the mission starts with Inferno Squad in the aftermath of the destruction of the shield generator, picking off the Rebels who are lingering. After confirming that there is no chance of repairing the shields they see the Death Star explode. The team get the order to evacuate the planet and rendezvous with the fleet at Vice-Admiral Sloane’s orders.

Inferno Squad makes their way through the forest and take out Rebel squads, helping their fellow Imperials and heading for Landing Pad 4.

The Landing Pad is overrun by Rebels who have stolen an AT-ST which you have to dispatch using a rocket launcher (sweet). Once on the Pad, more Rebels are in your way. The team leaves via TIE Fighters after clearing the area.

Hask reaches the teams ship, The Corvus first but it’s been damaged so it’s up to you and Del Meeko, after navigating the wreckage from the Death Star’s destruction to protect the ship from an onslaught of X-Wings and Y-Wings as Hask and the crew repair the engines. Once the ship is repaired Iden is called away to Admiral Versio’s Star Destroyer, The Eviscerator to receive new orders for the team.

The Gameplay – Players get to see the fantastic looking environment of the Forest Moon of Endor and it looks great. The main addition to the gameplay is the piloting of the TIE Fighter which is great fun. The controls are easy to get to grips with and once you know what you are doing you can fly through the debris at top speeds, just don’t crash, it’s embarrassing.

Easter Eggs – U-Wings!!! The troop transports from Rogue One make another appearance (after the opening cut-scene from the first Mission). Aside from that there are no real Easter eggs to report, that I have noticed anyway.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews – Star Wars: Empire’s End (Aftermath Trilogy 3) by Chuck Wendig

The final part of Wendig’s Aftermath Trilogy, Empire’s End builds on everything established in the previous two books.

The characters entire arcs come to very pleasing (to the readers) ends, some which we expect and others we don’t.

Storylines come together, for the main characters and those featured in the Interludes, giving us a greater perspective of life a year after the fall of the Emperor.

This book has a lot, action, drama, politics and enough Easter eggs to make that infernal bunny hang around for months.

The main focus of the book is Jakku and the Imperial occupation of the planet and what the heroes of the trilogy are doing in the time leading to, during and after. The team is split up for the majority of the novel, with Norra, Mister Bones and Jas teamed up on Jakku hunting for Rae Sloane who in turn, with Nora’s husband Brentin, is looking for Gallius Rax so she can murder him and regain control of the remnants of the Empire. Temmin and Sinjir are on their own adventure full of political intrigue and espionage.

We also get arcs featuring OT characters. Han and Leia return and help Sinjir and Temmin uncover a plot within the Senate to not go to Jakku to defeat the Empire. Which ties in to a storyline featuring Mon Mothma. Essentially all of the threads weaved in the past two books all come to fruition here.

After the team go on a mission to extract information about Sloane from Bounty Hunter Mercurial Swift they head to Jakku only to find it under Imperial occupation. When they are attacked, Temmin evades the Imperial forces as Norra and Jas get into an escape pod and head for the planet. Temmin commands Bones to follow them, and barely in the nick of time Temmin and Sinjir jump into hyperspace, narrowly avoiding destruction.

On Jakku, after a heated argument, Jas and Norra agree to hunt down Sloane. On Chandrilla, Temmin and Sinjir go to Leia and Han for help, who in turn go to Mon Mothma, who is angry that Leia has sanctioned the teams actions without Senate permission but agrees that the New Republic should take on the Empire at Jakku.

On Jakku, Norra and Jas are captured by Stormtroopers whilst Sloane and Brentin are taken by Niima the Hutt and Jas is brought to Niima’s base by Swift and his crew. She escapes by breaking her horns and uses them to break her restraints and then as weapons against Swift before stealing his ship. Mister Bones rescues Norra from an Imperial work camp and they meet up with Jas in her new ship. They make a plan to stop Sloane who is part of Niima’s convoy, heading towards an Imperial base where Rax is located.

Sinjir and Temmin are given permission by Han Solo to take the Falcon to Jakku but they are stopped by Senate security, at the order of Mon Mothma’s political opponent, Tolwar Wortol who announces that Mothma had information on the Empire’s occupation of Jakku and held it back from the Senate. Sinjir smells a rat and goes to his former partner, Condor, a well renowned slicer, to help find out if there are any listening devices at Leia and Han’s apartment. It turns out to be in their Protocol Droid T-2LC.

Temmin, Han, Condor, Sinjir and Jom Burrell go on a mission to spy on a group of Senators who vote against attacking Jakku, after Mon Mothma pleads the case to do so before the Senate, to find out if they are being bribed (they are) whilst Mon Mothma causes a stir with Tolwar Wortol above Nakadia and he admits to manipulating the vote against Mon Mothma and bugging Leia and Han’s apartment. Once back with the Senate Mon Mothma pleads their case again and this time it goes through after the team manage to persuade the bribed Senators to vote to fight and also get rid of the criminals who are bribing them.

The Republic goes to war. Temmin guilts Wedge when he gets back to Coruscant to get Phantom Squadron, the pilots who joined Leia and Ackbar in aiding the liberation of Kashyyyk, back together to go to Jakku, using Wedge’s feelings for Norra to do so. Wedge gets them together, including Temmin who flies under the name ‘Snap’.

On Jakku, Niima’s convoy is obliterated, with the exception of Niima, Sloane and Brentin. Sloane and Brentin are picked up by Rax and taken to the Imperial base to watch the Emperors ‘contingency’ come to fruition. Niima helps Norra by giving her a uniform, access codes and an Imperial Shuttle. Jas stays with Niima and convinces Mercurial Swift’s crew to leave him and join her before killing the bounty hunter.

The Republic Fleet arrives, led by Admiral Ackbar and Commodore Agate and the Battle of Jakku begins. Phantom Squadron arrives and goes to the planet to provide air support for the ground forces. Temmin intercepts an Imperial Shuttle, but a quick thinking Mister Bones contacts his master, as it is the Droid and Norra on the shuttle.

Above the planet, Agate’s ship is damaged severely and as it begins to fall to the planet, the Commodore orders the fighters to attack the Super Star Destroyers engines. They do so and Agate uses her ships tractor beam to drag the Ravager down to the planet.

Norra arrives at the Imperial stronghold, and she finds Sloane and Brentin as they attempt to stop Rax’s plan, the Emperor’s contingency plan, to destroy the Empire and Rebel fleets in the event of his death which Rax alone was tasked to complete. They manage to kill Rax and stop the planets destruction but Brentin is killed.

Before he dies, Rax tell Sloane to take the surviving Imperials on his ship and meet with the remnants of the fleet in the Unknown Regions and gives her the co-ordinates.

On Chandrila, Sinjir goes to Mon Mothma to get permission for himself and Condor to go to Jakku but she forbids it, instead she hires Sinjir as her new advisor. His first task to deliver a message to Wortol. He does and as he leaves the Senator an explosion is heard, the target, Mon Mothma’s office. Luckily she was not in there at the time.

After the battle is won and the team all return to Chandrila we learn that Jom Barell also went to Jakku, on board a U-Wing. A missile was launched to destroy the ship but Jom leaked out of the side into the missiles path, saving all aboard. They gather one last time to celebrate, Norra and Temmin are leaving for the Republic’s new flight academy on Hosnian Prime where Wedge is in charge, Norra will be a teacher and Temmin a student. Jas is going off with her new crew, for whom she managed to get full pardons. Sinjir and Condor are together and enjoying their new lives. All seems to be good as they all say their farewells.

Leia and Han welcome Ben Solo into the Galaxy, Han worries he won’t be able to connect with him as well as Leia who encourages him to pick up his screaming son and hold him. Han does and Ben’s cries stop.

In the Unknown Regions, the Imperialis, piloted by Sloane arrives at the co-ordinates, her passengers, Brendol Hux, his son, Armitage and Rax’s army of Jakku’s children, and ahead of them, the Emporer’s personal Super Star Destroyer, The Eclipse, as well as the final remains of the Empire.

Empire’s End finishes the Aftermath Trilogy perfectly. Us fans had been eagerly awaiting a full account of the Battle of Jakku, we had gotten snippets in ‘Lost Stars’ by Claudia Grey and in one of the bonus maps in Star Wars: Battlefront which showed the Ravager crashing into the planet, but not much else.

Wendig really puts the characters through the ringer, splitting the team up who have worked so well together up until now. We lose two of the team, Jom Barell who went to Jakku to follow Jas and everyone’s favourite murder Droid bites the dust one last time and Temmin mourns him by burying the last piece of the Droid with his father on their home planet Akiva.

This is the best paced of the three novels and the interludes give us more insights to the Galaxy, we get more from Cobb Vanth on Tatooine, the Acolytes of Beyond become a serious threat, Chewbacca is reunited with his son on Kashyyyk and we find out the fate of Jar-Jar Binks in a surprisingly heart breaking scene.

I especially love the political intrigue in this book and having Sinjir becoming Mon Mothma’s adviser is a stroke of genius and I can only hope we get more of Sinjir in future novels, I really found myself rooting for him and Condor as they go from being uncomfortable ex-partners having to work together to Sinjir almost losing the plot when he finds out Condor has been captured by Black Sun, the criminal organisation working with Wortol against the Chancellor.

I really hope Wendig gets the opportunity to write more novels in the Star Wars universe, along with Claudia Grey, he can do no wrong in terms of the books written for the franchise and between them they have written my favourites in the new Canon books.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXIII – Cassian’s streaming services the Resistance’s Lego addiction and the loss of legends.

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

In this episode I discuss ‘Signal From Sector Six’, add more to the #CollectionCorner, give my two cents on the newly announced Cassian Andor series, go on a tangent about voice actors and mourn the loss of a legend.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

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#Collection Corner – The Force Awakens Rey Black Series

As I stated in the #Collection Corner – SWCE Exclusive Unmasked Kylo Ren Black Series post, I don’t collect the ‘Black Series’ due to space and the fact that there are so many now I wouldn’t know where to even start, but I always thought that the Kylo Ren looked a bit lonely on the wall.

A week or so after my daughter was born, my friend Andrew (who guested on THIS Life Debt Podcast Episode) got in touch to tell me he had found a bunch of Black Series figures for £5. I asked which ones and he gave me a list which included Rey… I asked a couple more questions. After some back and forth he picked one up for me. When I finally picked it up… it was sweet.

She is now nicely displayed next to the Kylo box, hung on the wall, still in the box. I’m not a big ‘keep them in the box’ collector but these look pretty nice in their boxes so I don’t feel bad about tearing open the packaging. Plus the ‘Black Series’ is more for display that playing, in my opinion and the boxes lend themselves to that.

First up, BB-8, the little guy looks great. Excellent detail and the weathering looks like he’s just been taken from Jakku. I never got a 3.75 inch BB-8 figure, I didn’t want to spend £16 on a BB-8 and two minor characters and never found nothin a sale so it was nice to get one in some form.

The artwork on the packaging looks great. Both characters look spot-on. Hasbro have a great team of artists who always do amazing work on the packaging (even if the figures look awful).

Rey comes with the Skywalker Lightsaber and her staff. I may be wrong but I have a feeling that Rey originally didn’t have the saber as an accessory until after the film was released to avoid spoilers, but I’m pretty glad this one had it. The accessories are of course well detailed but they kind of have to be when Hasbro know that the figures will be put through arduous scrutiny by fans and collectors.

The face and hair sculpt is really good, you can tell it’s Rey even at a passing glance, unlike the ‘Power of the Force 2’ Princess Leia who looks like a butch extra from Planet of the Apes. I may not collect them but I do have a look when I get chance and sometimes the sculpts on the action figures looks terrible. Just look at the Director Krennic figures that came out with ‘Rogue One’. Damn that looked bad.

The detail on the clothing is also great, the folds and creases in the clothes look great, even down to the buckles on the straps on her wrists and belt.

Overall this is a gorgeous figure and when I look at this and the Kylo figure I often wonder if a ‘Black Series’ collection is feasible, especially when they are half price at the nearest toy shop.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews – Star Wars: Life Debt (Aftermath Trilogy 2) by Chuck Wendig

For all those who wanted more out of ‘Star Wars: Aftermath’, be it more action, more classic characters or a faster paced story well you got what you wanted with ‘Star Wars: Life Debt’.

Chuck Wendig’s follow-up to the bestselling ‘Star Wars: Aftermath’ fires on all cylinders and delivers the book that I think fans were expecting from the first part.

Like any (planned) trilogy the first part always acts as a setting up. We meet characters, we discover the world (or Galaxy in this case) and we get the general lay-of-the-land. This allows the second part, the bulk of the trilogies overall story to be told without too much back story clogging up the proceedings.

Set three months after the previous book (roughly) we are now (again, roughly) nine months after Return of the Jedi and the pieces are starting to come together towards a climactic endgame. Norra and her crew, Sinjir Rath Velus, Jas Emari, Jom Barell, her son Temmin and his droid Mister Bones have been working for the New Republic hunting high powered Imperials and bringing them to justice.

Grand Admiral Rae Sloane of the Imperial Navy is working to bring the Empire back to its full glory with the help (or rather the manipulations) of Gallius Rax, a mysterious but influential member of the Empire who had a close personal relationship with Emperor, who is using her to fulfill Palpatine’s last wish.

The team are approached by Princess Leia who is concerned that her husband, Han Solo is in trouble and asks the team to track him down and bring him home. The team manage to find him and join him on his mission to save Chewbacca who has been captured by the Empire.

Their adventure takes them to Kashyyyk and in their mission they end up freeing hundreds of Imperial prisoners, including Chewie and Nora’s husband/Temmin’s father, Brentin.

The story splits between Chandrilla and Kashyyyk for the rest of the novel, Han and Chewie lead the freed Wookiees and freed prisoners in liberating Kashyyyk whilst on Chandrilla Norra, Brentin and Temmin need to adjust to their life together as Chancellor Mon Mothma invites Sloane to peace talks which devolve into a mass assassination attempt where the freed prisoners have been programmed to attack the New Republic leaders. Sloane realises this was Rax’s plan all along and that she has been thrown to the wolves. She is severely injured but escapes with Brentin’s help. They land on Jakku in time for the full Imperial Remnant to arrive, led by Gallius Rax.

This novel gives us the first proper look at what the classic heroes are doing post-Return of the Jedi after the events of Shattered Empire and Battlefront 2, the latter of which ties into the events of this book, the Han Solo level is set in the months between Aftermath and Life Debt when Han has grown the beard.

Leia is the counterpart to Sloane, both are the faces of their faction and in the end both are rejected by their factions. Sloane is left out to die by Rax and Leia becomes a political pariah after she goes on a personal mission to rescue Han on Kashyyyk and takes Wedge and Ackbar with her.

This book gives the team some great character development throughout.

Nora’s crew becomes divided but comes together again with the exception of Jom who stays on Kashyyyk to aid the liberation. The thing that brings them back together, apprehending Sloane.

Temmin has received the nickname ‘Snap’ by Wedge who is teaching him how to pilot X-Wings and Mister Bones is starting to develop a stronger love of violence.

Sinjir is required to threaten to torture some Imperials for information, something he would have to do in his former role as an Imperial Loyalty Officer but now it makes him feel ashamed, he wants to forget that life and move on, except when he is faced with someone who hurt and upset his friends, something the Sinjir of the Empire probably would never have said.

Jas Emari is the Bounty Hunter who is starting to fight for the cause rather than the paycheque and her time with the crew has begun to ware her hard exterior down, especially with the New Republic Special Forces soldier Jom Barell who had a small role in the previous book and gets more time to shine here.

There is a lot of weight to this book, and by that I am talking ‘the feels’. Relief and happiness that Norra and Temmin are reunited with Brentin and we completely feel for them both and get what they’re going through when Temmin is angry that things are not ok between his Mum and Dad, and given the circumstances it’s understandable, they have been apart for years, he was believed to be dead and he has come back from an extended induced coma to find that the war he was fighting in secret has been won.

The characters we feel the most for, if only because they are the most familiar are Han, Leia and Chewie. Leia because she is essentially alone and going through her pregnancy whilst working with the Senate and getting nowhere. She finally takes action by breaking away from her political duties and doing what she feels is right by running off to save Han.

Han starts out completely lost. Chewie is missing and he’s trying to find him. He reluctantly accepts help from the team and together they rescue the prisoners on Kashyyyk and start to liberate the planet. Once the attack on Chandrilla occurs Han knows that he has to go back with Leia whilst Chewie has his own job to do on his own home world. Their ‘goodbye’ moment is beautifully written and is played out exactly as it should be. Not prolonged and drawn out but serves as both a testament to Wendig’s skill as a writer and the power of the two characters involved. Not one beat in this scene felt out of place for either Han or Chewie. As fans we know this isn’t the last time they see each other but it’s heartbreaking nonetheless seeing our favourite smuggling duo break up.

At the end of the novel all of the pieces are set for the inevitable conclusion of the trilogy, the Battle of Jakku and as an audience we awaited the conclusion of this trilogy with baited breath.

I remember feeling conflicted when I bought this book. It came out just before Celebration Europe and it had been announced that there would be a convention exclusive cover BUT my local bookshop has a habit of having some of the Star Wars books on sale early… what to do? In the end I bought it early and took it to the convention with me and was reading it in the queue for the Rebels Season 3 wristbands which led to a conversation about the books with a guy called Craig.

I must say, in addition, that this book has a lot more resonance now after the release of ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’, where we not only see the origins of Han and Chewie’s partnership, but the fireside conversation where Chewie talks about looking for his tribe/family and then the moment between Chewie and Sagwa on Kessel. It all makes those tugs on the old heartstrings all the more tear inducing.

I have started my reread of Empire’s End so look out for my review soon.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXII – The Resistance, Clone Wars, Podcast and Collection Catch-Up

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

In this episode I discuss the fourth and fifth episodes of Star Wars: Resistance. I add to the collection on Collectors Corner. I throw my hat in the ring over the Clone Wars Cancellation reasons from when Disney took over and I wax lyrically over another Star Wars Podcast.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

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#Collection Corner – SWCE Exclusive Unmasked Kylo Ren Black Series

I never got into the Black Series when I returned to the Star Wars fandom in 2014. They looked great but I was never able to find them, and if I did I wasn’t keen on the price tag of £20. I am quite possibly living in the past when I say this but when I was younger, action figures cost £5. By the time Revenge of the Sith came out I paid £6 per figure. But £20? It’s a bit much for me.

Then of course I went to Celebration Europe in 2016 and they had a Con Exclusive Unmasked Kylo Ren in a collectors box. To get it you had to queue up for a ticket which gave you a time to pick it up. At first I wasn’t bothered but then I saw pictures and it looked great.

My mind was finally made up on the Saturday morning in the line for the Rebels Season 3 panel wristbands and a guy I was talking to had bought and swayed my mind as well as the minds of a couple of our queue buddies.

Once we got our Rebels wristbands we ran (well walked briskly) to the Kylo Ren queue and got our tickets.

Skip to a few hours later, I had shopped and been to a couple of panels and finally made my way to the Forbidden Planet stalk and got it. £35. I accepted that price, it’s a convention exclusive, in a nice box with some extra accessories.

My god it was glorious.

The box is lovely. The art is amazing and I was happy to also get the cover as a poster. Then I opened it up.

Again, the interior art is great and then there is the figure.

I love this figure. The sculpt is pretty good, which shows the level of detail Hasbro want to put in to this series, much better that the 3.75 inch figures in general. The outfit, both moulded and fabric looks so good and I love the addition of him holding his (brilliantly detailed) lightsaber hilt. I won’t lie, I have posed him (in the box) to look like he is holding the saver out to Han like that scene in The Force Awakens.

The accessories are great. His ignited saver has the same level of detail on the hilt and the blade looks good, which is hard to do given the volatile nature of Kylo’s sabre blade.

The First Order banner looks good, and if displayed out of the box would look good displayed with the figure but really it’s only there to pad out the set and justify the price for the set.

The Kylo Ren helmet looks great too but the jewel of the set is Vader’s burnt helmet.

Wow. Just wow. It’s so well detailed and makes buying the collectors edition that bit better, I know it’s only a tiny bit of plastic, and the unmasked Kylo came out as a regular Black Series figure without the extra accessories but this just makes it that bit more special.

All in all, for my first dive into The Black Series this is a fantastic set. Will I go out and buy the whole range? Not likely, I don’t have the room but I have bought one more which I have on display (still in the box) with this which I will review at a later date.

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My Star Wars (Life) Reviews – Star Wars: Aftermath (Aftermath Trilogy 1) by Chuck Wendig

Sometimes I find writing this blog to be rife with irony. Back when I wrote a post about my thoughts on what a potential second wave of Solo: A Star Wars Story Lego Sets would consist of. A few days later the second wave of Solo Lego sets were announced and I had somehow got quite a few of the details right.

So the other night I was reading Aftermath in the bath, planning on writing this review and when I get downstairs Chuck Wendig was on Twitter announcing that he had been fired from Star Wars projects at Marvel. I’ll not go into that here but my thoughts on the situation can be heard on the Life Debt Podcast Episode XIII – Emergency Broadcast: Justice4Chuck.

Right then, let’s talk about the book…

I really enjoyed this book. I have read it twice now and it was just as good the second time around, and I’m wondering if it will get better for me as I make my way through the next two parts of the Aftermath Trilogy, Life Debt and Empire’s End, and I will discuss my thoughts on the trilogy as a whole in a later post.

The book got a lot of flack when I was released. Of course a lot of this is due to internet trolls but he genuine issues that were raised stated that there weren’t a lot of Original Trilogy characters. True. We get an interlude featuring Han and Chewie. Another featuring Mon Mothma. The story features Wedge and Admiral Ackbar in supporting roles. But for some this was not enough. People wanted a book about the heroes of the OT but what we got was a group of new characters in their own adventure as well as giving us brief ‘Interludes’ from around the Galaxy giving the readers an idea of what life is like for the citizens away from the main plot.

The main narrative follows a group of characters who through various circumstances come together to form a rag-tag group who end up working together to bring down a meeting of a group of Imperial leaders. The group consists of Norra Wexley, a former Rebellion Y-Wing pilot who has returned to her home world of Akiva to reunite with her teenage son, Temmin (Snap) Wexley. Jas Emari, a bounty hunter on Akiva to capture one of the Imperial dignitaries for the New Republic and Sinjir Rath Velus, a former Imperial Loyalty Officer who escaped the Battle of Endor by wearing a dead Rebel soldiers clothes and now lives in the various bars of Akiva.

And how could I leave out Temmin’s modified B1 Battle Droid, Mr Bones?

The biggest downfall for the book is that when it was released it hadn’t been promoted as the beginning of a trilogy so what we got was a whole lot of set up for new characters and set up for them to work together and form a team but very little pay off for them other than a future of working for the New Republic. When ‘Life Debt’ and ‘Empires End’ were announced it made a lot of sense.

A pleasant surprise was the return of the new Canon favourite, Admiral Rae Sloane who first appeared in ‘A New Dawn’. She has been promoted through the years between the books and as much as I enjoyed the character in the earlier book, she really shines in Aftermath.

As far as our heroes go, the whole team are great characters, but my favourite by far is former Imperial Loyalty Officer Sinjir. His cynical nature is my cup of tea, he’s by far in no way a reputable character with more flaws than you can shake a stick out and even though he was once one of the bad guys you can’t help but love him.

We get some great character connections to other parts of the franchise, Jas Emari is the teams ruthless bounty hunter who is related to the bounty hunter Sugi who we were introduced to in the Clone Wars who led a gang of bounty hunters that teamed up with Anakin and Obi-Wan to defend a village against Hondo and his pirates. Norra Wexley is a former Rebel Y-Wing pilot who was in the Battle of Endor, she piloted the Y-Wing that acted as a diversion for the TIE Fighters inside the Death Star to relieve Lando and Wedge as they headed for the Power Generator. Her son, Temmin is also featured in the films but known as ‘Snap’ Wexley and is a Resistance pilot in The Force Awakens.

Aftermath is not the best of the new Canon works, but it’s in no way the worst. As I said before it has the unfortunate task to set up a trilogy but also has to set up the Galaxy, the Star Wars galaxy at the time of the novel is in upheaval and Wendig portrays that perfectly whilst developing several new characters who will, in future books, interact with classic characters as well as start to build threads that will begin to tie in to the Sequel Trilogy. A difficult task that was executed brilliantly.

I thoroughly enjoyed this reread and look forward to rereading Star Wars: Aftermath 2 – Life Debt.

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#Collection Corner – Lego AT-Hauler Review

My wife is a saint.

I saw that the AT-Hauler Lego set from ‘Solo: A Star Wars Story’ had a decent price drop on Amazon and mentioned it in passing. The next day she asked me about it and ordered it. I started building it the day after that.

It has spent the past three days sat on the mantle piece as it gets built and she has not complained about it once.

The AT-Hauler is made up of 829 pieces and costs £89.99 (RRP) which when you work our price per brick etc isn’t too bad when it comes to a license based set. I spent £71 on Amazon, which I felt to be a very good deal (the lowest I saw it was £65).

The set comes with five mini-figs. Two of Dryden Vos’s guards, Qi’Ra in her ‘Lodge Outfit’, Val and Rio Durant and the build come in seven numbered bags and some stickers.

Bag 1 consists of the Qi’Ra mini-fig, her blaster, a cargo container and gun rack with four large blasters and the underside cage of the AT-Hauler which is most prominently seen in the scene where Han asks Chewie his name.

The second bag gives us the skeleton of one wing and the two Dryden Vos Guards, the third bag gives us the skeleton of the second wing.

These are quite technical builds, the landing gears are connected to a wheel which you use to change them from flight to landing configuration and a series of long pieces are connected up the length of the wings, their purpose becomes clear later.

The third bag feels repetitive as you are building the exact same thing but it’s the cross we Lego builders must bare at times.

Bags 4 and 5 give us the outside plating and lifting mechanism of both wings. Bag 4 is just the one set of playing but 5 is the wing plating as well as the mechanics to lift the Argo box using the two hook structures which are connected to the wheels on the outside of the wings. These are connected to the mechanism which is made of the multiple long sticks which connect to the hooks. When the wheels are moved the hooks open and allow you to get he hooks under the crate. Pretty fancy really.

Bag 4 also gives us the delightful Cal mini-fig. I love that we can flesh out the cast of Solo with this set, Val and Rio are fan favourites and deserve to be immortalised in Lego form.

Bag 6 give us the base of the cockpit and the pilot seat as well as the ships mid-section leaving space at the back for engines. This section also uses the most amount of stickers for outside details.

Bag 6 also gives us the Rio Durant mini-fig. This is a small mini-fig, using the shorter legs used for small or child characters. He also has custom arms which give Rio his four arms. The head mould and paint job is well detailed and the attached goggles aren’t cumbersome or too blocky.

Bag 7 completes the set with the outside of the cockpit and details for the rear of the vehicle.

The slanted walls of the cockpit are held on using a well placed clip brick and the printed hubcaps give nice details on either side of the ship. There is one sticker for this bag, the cockpit window details.

The cockpit has room to fit one mini-fig comfortably and the base of the ship can hold two mini-figs, preferably sitting so their heads aren’t obscured by one of the cross beams.

The ship can comfortably lift the cargo box and be off the ground, although the bulky rear end makes “swooshing” difficult.

The final set looks great, a well detailed ship with fun play features (two stud shooters adorn the sides of the cockpit) and a fun range of mini-figs, with my favourites being Val and Rio.

After getting this set I am sorely tempted to pick up the Conveyex set, but once it has a good price drop that is, I am still disappointed by it only having one carriage. But given the fact that the two sets compliment each other I would be doing myself a disservice by not getting it.

If I had paid full price, however I would have been disappointed by the size, the box give the impression that the set is quite large but once fully constructed it is more of a medium sized set but the amount of pieces and some of the custom pieces made for the set warrant the price.

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Life Debt Podcast Episode XXI – The Mandalorian Lego Pop Showcase Extravaganza… listen and it will make sense.

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

In this episode I shake it up by giving the show a bit more structure. I talk about what’s coming up on the blog this week, the sudden growth in my collection in #Collection Corner. Another new segment called ‘This Week I Have Mostly Listened to…’ where I showcase another Star Wars Podcast and I give an update on the My Star Wars Life Debt Patreon.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

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Star Wars Battlefront 2 – Mission 0: The Cleaner

As I have recently gotten back into gaming after getting a new XBox One S this past week I’ve gone and gotten back into Battlefront 2 in a big bad way.

There will be spoilers for the game so be warned if you haven’t played it yet.

The result of this is I will now do some writing about each of the levels as I make my way through the game again, starting with Mission 0 – The Cleaner.

The premise – Commander Iden Versio, leader of Inferno Squadron has been captured by Rebels and brought on board one of the Mon Calamari capital ships.

She is interrogated but gives nothing away. She remotely activates her droid sidekick which frees her and she goes to a control room to delete an Imperial transmission which would alert the Rebel fleet to the whereabouts of the Imperial Fleet hiding at Endor prior to the Rebel attack on the second Death Star.

Once she erases the message she fights her way off of the ship and to freedom… via the airlock.

Once back on the Corvus, Inferno Squadron’s ship, her father, Admiral Versio orders them to meet the fleet at Endor.

Gameplay – As far as introductory missions go on a game this one is a good one. It lets you get to grips with the controls whilst throwing a few Easter Eggs our way. The biggest one is a transmission you overhear from Admiral Ackbar setting out the plan to divert Imperial attention to Sullust whilst the fleet prepares to attack the Death Star, a reference to Vader’s line about “reports of the Rebel fleet massing bear Sullust”.

It’s a great introduction to the main protagonist, Iden Versio. She’s a brilliant tactician, a ruthless soldier and a loyal Imperial, which doesn’t interfere with how you feel about her. Seeing the Empire from an Imperial soldiers perspective is interesting. The Rebel Alliance is a thorn in the side of the Empire, bringing chaos to the civilised communities of the Emperors Galaxy. It’s only later that her faith in the regime is shattered.

We also get to meet, at the end of the mission, Agent Hask and Agent Meeko, her teammates on Inferno Squad who are increasingly important as the game progresses.

It’s not the best level but once you get past the obligatory ‘learn the controls’ portion it’s good fun running around the ship blasting the Rebel Scum.

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Blog Post 100!

I made it!

100 posts ago I started this endeavour to write about Star Wars on a regular basis and since releasing the first post back in March it’s gone from a post whenever I had one to publish to having multiple posts per week… and then a Podcast… and now plans for a YouTube channel which will hopefully come to fruition in 2019.

It has been a tough old road, having to take a couple of months off due to illness put everything back a bit but the past couple of weeks have been great in terms of visitors and views.

So, I would like to take a moment to say a few thank yous, firstly I would like to thank my good friend and flag waver for the blog, Tom, who despite not being a fan of Star Wars, gave me a lot of advice and support along the way.

Secondly, Sara my wife who has also shown a lot of support and also didn’t complain too much when I put jobs on hold to write.

A big thank you to the Star Wars fans community, without you this blog wouldn’t be going as strong as it has over the past seven months, even in my two month hiatus. Especially to those who have liked, shared or commented either on the blog or the various social media outlets I inundate with links.

I would also like to shout out the folks at Now This is Podcasting who have the blog a major bump when they talked about a post where I wrote about Star Wars Podcasts.

And one last thank you to the Patreon supporters, your contributions to the blog and podcast are very much appreciated.

Now, what does the future hold?

As I said before, next year I hope to bring ‘My Star Wars Life Debt’ to YouTube in some way.

In December I will be releasing a special Christmas bonus on Patreon and also make it available for sale for anyone who doesn’t want to sign up. And trust me it’s going to be worth it. Over an hour and a half of brilliant Star Wars content just in time for the festive season, I’ll give more information in the next couple of weeks.

The blog and podcast will continue to expand. I’m constantly thinking of new content for the blog and I will be welcoming some more guests to the Podcast soon.

Once again, thank you to everyone who has supported the blog and podcast, I couldn’t have gotten this far without you.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page here.

Life Debt Podcast Episode XX – Resistance Ep 3: Fuel for the Fire

The latest episode of the Life Debt Podcast is now live. You can listen to it HERE.

In this episode I discuss the third episode of Star Wars: Resistance – Fuel for the Fire.

You can e-mail the show at lifedebtpodcast@outlook.com

And if you are a member of Anchor.fm you can leave a voice message for the podcast. Just search for My Star Wars Life Debt and click the ‘Leave Message’ button.

Thank you for visiting My Star Wars Life Debt.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please like/share/comment/follow.

If you would like to contribute to the upkeep of the blog please visit the Patreon page HERE.

Balancing the Force

I had the idea of writing a post about the ‘Balance of the Force’ back in March (it’s 11th October when I finally started writing) and have made a few attempts at gathering research and ideas and even some quotes from people in the Star Wars community but I could never truly commit. How do you write about something so huge as the concept of balance in the Force, honestly I find it quite daunting. Well I’m going to give it a go.

When the concept of ‘Balance’ was introduced in Phantom Menace I had no idea what it would mean. How does Anakin bring balance? Why does the Force need balance? How do you balance the Force out? Granted I was 13 and wasn’t quite putting two and two together in terms of overall plot.

The concept was brought up again with Mace Windu reminding Obi-Wan that his apprentice (Anakin) would bring the Force back into balance. Again, how?

With Revenge of the Sith Obi-Wan mentions it twice, once in conversation with Yoda and Mace Windu and again after he has defeated Anakin on Mustafar.

By then I was thinking about it a bit more and came to the conclusion that Anakin had fulfilled the prophecy (or almost) by wiping out the Jedi in the Temple whilst the Clones around the Galaxy were doing their part, and of course Vader would continue to hunt down the Jedi in the following years but essentially by the end of Revenge of the Sith we had two Jedi and two Sith. Balance.

Then through the trilogy that Balance in maintained. Two Jedi and Sith throughout, Luke takes Obi-Wan’s place after Kenobi becomes one with the Force. When Yoda passes on, we have the existence of another Force user revealed to be Leo’s with Sidious and Vader representing the Dark Side. But then, Vader returns to the Light Side, making it 3 on 1 and finally 3 – 0 after killing his master. After Vader/Anakin dies it leaves us with Luke and Leia. One Jedi and one Light Side orientated Force Sensitive who never really goes through the training.

But after the six film saga was complete, Lucas himself said that Anakin had fulfilled the prophecy at the end of Return of the Jedi by killing the Emperor and irradiating the Sith. But how is this putting the Force into Balance? How I ask?

I looked up the definition of Balance:

The Force is still swaying towards the Light. The scales are tipped to one side, unbalanced.

Could Lucas have been talking about it from the Jedi point-of-view and their interpretation of the Chosen One prophecy?

When Lucasfilm was bought by Disney and we started getting new material, suddenly we were getting more Light and Dark Side users, Ezra, Kanan and a whole group of Inquisitors. Maul was still alive, as was Ahsoka. The Force was starting to look a little unbalanced again. Then in the post-ROTJ world we got two new Dark Side users. Kylo Ren and Supreme Leader Snoke and the freshly awakened to the Force Rey who went to find Luke Skywalker.

The Last Jedi finally brought a clearer notion of Balance within the Force during Luke’s teachings to Rey. Her first lesson where Luke has he open herself to the Force and everything she feels and experiences, life, death, peace, destruction, powerful Light and powerful Dark.

But Luke makes mention that for a while there was Balance during his second lesson where he tells Rey what had happened in the years between the fall of the Empire and the destruction of the New Republic. He said that there was balance but then he took Ben Solo and a dozen students. Does this mean that Luke became a more neutral Force user like Bendu from ‘Rebels’, only to return to the Light during The Last Jedi? Is that how the ‘Balance’ works?

Allow me a paragraph or two of fan-theorising. In the first Jedi Temple there is the mosaic of the ‘Prime Jedi’

It’s very reminiscent of the Yin/Yang symbol. The dark and light in equal parts. What if the original Jedi were neutral and over time a group of them splintered off and became the Sith and to maintain balance another group, or the remaining neutral Jedi turned towards the concept of the Light Side, forming the Jedi Order that evolved into what we see in the Prequel Trilogy. Perhaps the original prophecy of ‘The Chosen One’ was actually about a Force User who would wipe out both the Jedi and the Sith and that way the future Force Users would rise to be more neutral based on the mistakes of the past?

Of course this leads me to the sequel trilogy. Rian Johnson said that Rey and Kylo were essentially the two sides of a coin. My thought is that they are the new balance. The Force has manipulated the two of them to be the opposing sides. Ben Solo is conflicted, he always has been through The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. He wants to be good but is unable to turn away from the Dark. Rey now has access to the ancient Jedi texts that, I think direct her to tread a more neutral path but until Ben is killed or he turns from the Dark she will be the embodiment of the Light Side.

My belief is that the end of the Skywalker Saga with Episode IX will culminate with the Force finally being in balance, whatever that means. Will that end the episodic films? Only time will tell but that’s for another blog post for another time.

In my attempts to write this post I have asked around the Star Wars community on Twitter and have had a few great responses from Podcasters and a certain member of the Star Wars Story Group at Lucasfilm and I’ll put them here for you to have a look at and bask in the differing views of the fans.

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Kathleen Kennedy: Three More Years!

Three more years! Three more years! Kathleen Kennedy has extended her contract as head of Lucasfilm until 2021!!!

That’ll show the haters who think Kathleen Kennedy is doing a bad job running Lucasfilm.

From the day it was announced that George Lucas had hired her as his replacement as the head of the company I, and may others have believe she was the best choice.

Her resume speaks for itself, her name is synonymous with my childhood. I was raised on Indiana Jones, Back to the Future, The Goonies, Jurassic Park and many more. For her to take over the company responsible for Star Wars, another staple of that era of cinema it made perfect sense.

Once Disney bought the company and she took the reigns she has shepherded in the golden age of Star Wars. The Universe is all under one banner and I honestly think it’s for the better, but this isn’t an EU vs Canon debate. Kennedy has made some great decisions, who else but J.J. Abrams has the balls to take on the first part of the Sequel Trilogy and he was the top choice on everyone’s mind. He made a Star Wars film before but it was called Star Trek. She has opened up the Star Wars franchise to new cinematic stories beyond the Saga films and the two entries under the ‘A Star Wars Story’ banner have been fantastic films. And don’t get me started on my love of Rian Johnson and The Last Jedi.

Of course she has made some tough choices, replacing Gareth Edwards during the Rogue One reshoots, the firing of Phil Lord and Chris Miller during the filming of Solo and removing Colin Treverow (although I consider this to be a good decision) as Director of Episode IX. But these decisions were made to serve the stories the films were telling.

And we have already had announcements of the future of the franchise with Rian Johnson’s upcoming trilogy and the series of films from the Game of Thrones show-runners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss.

Not only have the Star Wars films thrived under her watchful eye but thanks to her we are finally getting a live action series and have had two new animated series, ‘Rebels’ and the recently premiered ‘Resistance’ AND the upcoming revival of the beloved Clone Wars series. Lucas put Star Wars on the map in 1977 and held it firm until 2012 but Kathleen Kennedy has her eyes set on the stars for our beloved franchise and is showing no signs of slowing down.

She has brought us a fantastic six years and here’s looking forward to three more and hopefully beyond 2021.

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