The Star Wars Black Series Gaming Greats sub-line is a range of figures from the Star Wars video game universe, and is exclusive to Gamestop in the US - while sold via the Fan Channel elsewhere in the World. The line launched in 2020 and therefore missed the first releases from the Star Wars video game Jedi : Fallen Order with these releases of Cal Kestis, Second Sister and the first Purge Trooper sitting in the main line. In Autumn of 2020 the Gaming Greats line revisited the Purge Trooper, with a new variant with Electrostaff released.
The Gaming Greats packaging remains in the older Phase 3 format in terms of box shape, dimensions and the base black colouring and grey gloss Black Series logo. The Gaming Greats hexagon logo is now cut into the right of the window and repeated on the side spine where the Phase 3 numbering used to sit. To differentiate this Purge Trooper from its predecessor with the standard blasters, this release has been labelled as the Electrostaff Purge Trooper and the box also carries - as is only the case for video game releases - the game logo on the bottom right.
The Gaming figures each have an accent colour, picked with some association to the figure - in the case of the Purge Trooper the Hasbro team have used a Purple to match the energy of the Electrostaff. This Purple is used as the side spine and within the Titus artwork as an accent colour. It is also used as a card back for the figure, and unfortunately this particular use of the colour does render the figure a little lost with black armour against a dark purple backdrop.
The artwork is repeated on the back and adjacent to this is a very brief piece of background text for the Purge Troopers. Unlike the background history as seen on Purge Trooper release 1, this short sentence is pretty unenlightening about the Troopers only their role on the battlefield.
"Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order features Purge Troopers, a new class of soldiers who assist the Inquisitors in hunting down any remaining Jedi"
The figure opens as usual via top or base flap and slides out in a plastic tray that itself sits in the inner cardboard tray.
Our Purge Troopers, as seen in the game, are wearing Clone Trooper armour with an Airborne Trooper helmet and this is all well recreated in the figure format with each armour piece and the helmet cast in glossy black plastic. Underneath this in what would be the body suit we have some less shiny black plastic cast pieces which offer little in terms of contrast to the outer armour.
Over this black plastic are some limited decor applications. The helmet has a painted burgundy visor and some gun metal details around the mouth section. A red imperial decal is applied to each shoulder armour section and white arrow markings added to the right forearm and right upper leg. There is then a touch of gun metal on the belt buckle, and some final red highlights round the back on the four circles of the back armour panel.
The Trooper is also fitted with a seperate Pauldron that is cast in a black dull soft plastic and applied around the neck and under the arm to hold it in place. The Kama skirt is a soft goods piece that is held in place by the belt.
The figure is the exact same sculpt as the 2019 Purge Trooper and the body is of course a direct re-use in itself from the original 2014 Clone Trooper body. The only real paint differences between the two are the red on the Pauldron, helmet and kama skirt of the original trooper are not translated to the new version. This is game accurate as the Melee Purge Troopers do not carry any red markings either due to rank or specialism variances.
It is of course worth noting that the new Clone Trooper body was available at the time this figure was made, but not used. And while the looks of the figure are still good, there is some aspects of the stance that are a bit bow legged and awkward thanks to the leg design.
The figure is designated on the box as the Electrostaff Purge Trooper and the weapon accessory for the figure is the long Electrostaff melee weapon we see used by several Purge Troopers through the game. It is cast in a grey plastic with ridged detail down the central grip and detailing around either end where the power emits. I initially felt this was too big in terms of scale, but having played back some footage it is the right size in terms of being a good 2.5 inches or more taller than the figure.
Included in the set, and packed in the box around the weapon, are two soft plastic translucent purple electro effects. These are not attached to the staff and will fall off immediately on being unpacked. They will go on to provide no end of frustration as they simply are not engineered well enough to hold their position on the staff. They either needed to be glued in place, or cast in a harder plastic with a shape that will hold them tight in place.
The only solution I could find for the electro effects (other than glue) was to use the natural holes in the piece to stick through the staff. That will hold them in place, but they end up looking like they are sparking off on in one direction rather than sparking around the staff end. I suspect these are simply re-used from a Marvel Legends figure rather then engineered for this set and that cost cutting has led to a piece that does not work anywhere near as well as it should.
The other issue with the accessory, or rather the figure, is the hands which have been left as the weapon holding hands from the Clone Trooper body. While the will grip the staff well enough you will always have a raised finger on the right hand which would usually sit in the trigger.
The whole piece ends up being frustrating and it really is a case of good looking accessory without enough practical thought about how it can be held, posed and displayed.
As mentioned earlier, a new Clone Trooper body is now available in the line and offers up much improved articulation around the shoulders and legs in particular over the orignal 2014 body. Sadly, our Purge Trooper still gets the 2014 version so while the articulation count of 18 points looks good you will need to be aware of some restrictions.
Head : ball joint pivot neck
Body : torso ball joint
Arms : ball joint shoulder, bicep swivel, double joint elbows, wrist pivot
Legs : ball joint hips, thigh swivel, double joint knees, ankle rockers
The arms are the first concern on this Clone Trooper body as the shoulder armour stops them being raised out to the side. In Clone / Purge Trooper with a blaster this does not create too many issues - but with a melee weapon all options of holding the staff over shoulder height are restricted
The legs have a similar issue at the hips in terms of being moved up and out in wider action stances. There is no way your trooper can kneel or sit, and standing also poses some issues with the need to turn the thigh swivel out to widen the feet to balance the figure and the weapon in particular.
I also felt that the Purge Trooper left leg is a touch longer than the right (this may be an assembly issue) and that leaves a lot of poses requiring the knees to be bent and the ankle rocker adjusted to get a flat footed pose. This is not helped by very severe ratchets in the ankle rocker that do not seem to want to stop on a flat footed pose and seem to click one notch too far either way.
The Purge Trooper design is one that translates well to figure form and can use existing parts, while also bringing the Clone Trooper Airborne helmet into the line for potential future use with Clone Wars era figures. This second iteration is predominantly the same figure as released in 2019 with some minor colour changes and a differing weapon.
The weapon is the biggest frustration with the set with the electro effect pieces refusing to behave and remain attached to the weapon.
Once you do get it setup and posed, the figure looks the business alongside the earlier release although not using the new articulated body feels like another missed opportunity. From memory we still have two more Purge Trooper variants to go, with Vibro Axe and Batons still relatively likely in this format in the next year or two?
I scored the original Purge Trooper a 4.0 last year. This one drops down to a 3.0 in total, impeded heavil by the execution of the weaponry.
About Me : As a child of the 70's and 80's I grew up in a golden age for action figures and in my youth bought and sold myself through collections of Star Wars, G.I. Joe (Action Force) and M.A.S.K. while also dabbling in He-Man, Transformers and Ghostbusters. Roll forward and I am now reliving that Youth with the action figures of today and am a collector and fan of the larger 6-8 inch figures from my favourite movie and TV licences - including the ones mentioned above, but also the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Doctor Who and the Aliens. I launched The Mephitsu Archives in 2015 with a view of creating a UK focused site or these figures where fans can pick up the latest action figure news, read reviews and get information on where to buy their figures and what is currently on store shelves. I hope I am delivering that to you guys...
action figures, reviews, review, articulation, star wars, black series, hasbro, gaming greats, jedi fallen order, purge troopers, electrostaff