In science fiction science is, well, fiction: the laws of physics can be put aside and substitute them with whatever fits the story. In Star Wars this means, among other things, spaceships with atmospheric flight dynamics in the vacuum of space. The X-wings fly like Spitfires, even the explosions spew flames and debris in the direction of airflow – which does not exist in space.
Bending the rules allows designing vehicles and spaceships that couldn’t possibly work if they were real. The ball and two flyswatters shaped T.I.E. fighter (Or TIE, short for Twin Ion Engines) is one of the oddities that came out of this. It’s the weirdest design ever. I love it!
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With the newly released Rogue One: A Star Wars Story movie we get to know a new version of the TIE fighter, it’s called the TIE Striker. There has been variations of the TIE fighter earlier, so there isn’t really anything extraordinary about this. Yet there is!
This version of the TIE was still a bit of a mystery at the time I opened the Lego box. Seeing it for the first time in Lego I was not affected by the baggage of prior knowledge. There was no feeling of this and that being different compared to the real thing. It was free of all that and I found it very interesting.
The Lego version of the little fighter looks great. The benefit of being new works well, but it’s not the only thing this set has going for itself. The fighter no longer has an orb shaped fuselage but rather a cocktail frankfurter. The horizontally laid out wings are hinged in the middle and go up and down. It’s a landing procedure thing, I guess. There’s something charmingly butterflyesque about the design. You only have to add antennaes on top of the cockpit and you get yourself a Lego cyberpunk insect of a sorts.
Round tubular shapes are a challenge to create in Lego. If the diameter is not exactly right for pre-existing curved bricks, you may have to make a lot of compromises. This thing uses an ample number of slopes to get the fuselage shape right and, without prior reference, it looks amazing! There is a fair amount of greeblies on the fuselage to make it look busy. I like the (new?) light blue colour on some of the bricks, it works well with the grey and black majority of bricks. The colour scheme is calm and elegant. Using a grey droid body for controls and dashboard in the cockpit is a very cool detail.
I like this model, the concept is great and it looks well in Lego. The design is well balanced, nothing sticks out too much and the wings are big enough to not look budget cut.
Too bad it was criminally underused in the movie.
Full time illustrator, part time photographer. As such, I created blizzards with Star Wars Lego and had an influence on how The Lego Movie looks like.