Posted by D. Martin on December 31, 2014 at 07:12 PM CST

2014 High End 1/6 Scale Figure: Sideshow Collectibles Imperial Probe Droid

In a lot of ways, Sideshow Collectibles caught its second wind in the fourth quarter of 2013 and they have kept their pace steady all year offering many different 1/6 scale figures over 2014 that many of us thought we'd never see. At first we thought their General Grievous would have been the best figure offered in their ongoing collection, but even though it was a distinct pleasure to see the impossible realized (when we met with them in 2005 they never thought they could take the line this far... but we knew better) the figure had too many issues to be considered for the top honors... But we still really like it. One could argue without much resistance that the company produced way to many Clone Troopers, but each Clone released in 2014 was amazing. The one truly amazing 2014 release is the Imperial Probe Droid. Never in our wildest dreams did we think they'd go in this direction, and the final product delivered! Multiple points of articulation, a display stand that can be used with or without its snowy ridge outer shell, and it featured both lights and sounds! While you do need to be careful repositioning it, the Imperial Probe Droid doesn't seem to have a self destruct, so if you don't have monkey mitts on it should survive suitable posing.

2014 5POA 1/6 Scale Figure: Gentle Giant Ltd's Jumbo Kenner Wampa

There were more 1/6 scale figures with five points of articulation released in 2014 than any other year since Kenner launched their classic line in 1978. In fact, no other year comes close to all the releases we saw from Gentle Giant and Hasbro this year. That said, the ones that stood out really stood out. For the most part, we've always really enjoyed the Jumbo Kenner line, but Gentle Giant's focus on the Hoth characters from the classic Kenner The Empire Strikes Back line were out of this world! Of the standard 12-inch figures, the Leia (Hoth Outfit) figure was almost perfect, and in many ways the most accurate 'human' in the entire collection so far. If nothing else, this figure had a perfect paint design and featured a paint mask that scaled up the classic Kenner figure's eyes more accurately than they've done with previous releases. If not for the Wampa, it would have been our favorite 5POA 1/6 scale figure released this year, but the Wampa was released this year and once we had it in our studio all competition was eliminated. There was no room argument. This figure is an absolute must have. Gentle Giant Ltd is going to have to make a Rancor to out do themselves this time.

2014 Retail 1/6 Scale Figure: Disney Store's Exclusive Talking Stormtrooper

At retail, only the Hasbro figures and the Disney Store figures were available, and at their price points, all were worth purchasing. None more so that the Disney Store exclusive Stormtrooper. This figure may be the most accurate Stormtrooper released so far (and will hold that claim to fame until Hot Toys' 1/6 scale Movie Masterpiece Series Stormtrooper comes out no doubt). All said, the Disney Store line is pretty stunning, but the Boba Fett and Stormtrooper stand above all the rest. While the Boba makes you want for a more screen accurate paint design, the Stormtrooper is just perfect. The paint design is nice, the gloss on the white plastic is perfect, and the helmet! That helmet is all you could ask for!
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