Thursday, December 13, 2012
Rebuilding Kenner's Star Wars Micro Collection, Brick by Brick
Toy collecting has become such a popular hobby that some collectors customize toys to appear like characters from popular fantasy, horror and sci-fi franchises. Sometimes, these customizations are done of compensate for the lack of licensed toys made in the likeness of a particular character (or even a particular vehicle), but what happens when a toy is used to recreate a previously released licensed toy?
Meet Eric Druon, a.k.a. BaronSat. BaronSat has produced a series of customized toy kits by using Lego bricks and you can see most of his work on his site, the BaronSat Workshop. He has assembled kits based on characters, settings and vehicles from franchises such as Battlestar Galactica, Planet of the Apes, Robotech, Star Trek and Star Wars, and you can even purchase some of these customizations--either as complete kits or as assembly instructions--through BaronSat's site.
Of the many amazing things that BaronSat shares on his site, I think that the most unique are his recreations of the two Death Star playsets that were released by Kenner as part of its short-lived Star Wars Micro Collection toy line during the early 80s. Not only do these sets recreate the exact details of the playsets, but they have been re-scaled to accommodate Lego Star Wars minifigs. Click below to see pictures of the two customized Lego playsets and how they compare to Kenner's originals. Photos are provided courtesy of the BaronSat Workshop, the Star Wars Collectors Archive, and the Rebel Scum.com site.
Kenner's two Micro Collection Death Star play sets were called "Death Star Escape" and "Death Star Compactor". These sets allowed kids to recreate key Death Star scenes from Star Wars, and the sets could be combined into a single play set called "Death Star World". As you can see from the pictures below, BaronSat included all of the playsets' features into his versions, including working doors, elevators and a trash compactor.
Death Star Escape:
Death Star Compactor:
Death Star World:
This is not the only Star Wars toy replica that BaronSat has assembled. If you look at the Star Wars picture gallery on his site, you will see his Lego recreation of the cardboard Death Star playset that was released by Palitoy and sold in the U.K. in the late 70s. Since Legos aren't as thin as cardboard, the dimensions of this recreation do not correspond directly to the original toy. Nevertheless, BaronSat did an impressive job at recreating the Palitoy playset for Star Wars minifigs.
The Palitoy Death Star Playset:
According to the Star Wars Collectors Archive, Kenner planned to release a third Death Star playset for the Micro Collection line before it was discontinued. The third playset was based on the Emperor's Throne Room from Return of the Jedi, and it was designed to connect to the other two Death Star playsets. So far, BaronSat has not designed a Lego replica of this unproduced playset (although we can hope he tries, right?).
You can purchase the instructions on how to build the Death Star Micro Collection playsets through the BaronSat Workshop site. Click here for more thoughts about Kenner's Star Wars Micro Collection toy line.