Review: 70706 Crater Creeper

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70706 Crater CreeperIt's been a while since we published a set review so the release of the Galaxy Squad sets here in the UK gives me a good reason to get a couple written over the next few days.

For reasons best known to the LEGO marketing department, the UK was the last country in the world to get the GS sets, but at least both the first- and second-wave sets have been released together. I won't bother reviewing the first batch because I suspect you all already have them, so I'll concentrate on the new ones.

70706 Crater Creeper is in the middle of the price range, at £17.99 or $19.99 for 171 pieces. It consists of a fearsome looking bug -- some sort of beetle -- with snapping mandibles, and a small hover-craft for the squaddie.

Box and contents

The back of the box shows the bug in detail and illustrates how its mandibles open and close. The QR coder at the bottom promises to show you the Crater Creeper in action, but alas, it currently leads to an error 404 (page not found).

70706 Crater Creeper

Inside we get four bags of parts in unnumbered bags, instructions and two sticker sheets. Is this a new trend, putting two stickers sheets in sets, in case you mess one set up? It certainly would make sense given they cost next to nothing and having two sheets might prevent calls to customer services for replacements, thus saving money in the long run.

70706 Crater Creeper

Minifigs

The set has not yet been inventoried at BrickLink, but I believe the minifigs are identical to those in the first batch of Galaxy Squad sets, which is perhaps a shame: it would have been nice to have some unique ones.

70706 Crater Creeper

The completed model

Here's the completed beetle and the hover-craft. The alien sits neatly within the bug. There are plenty of flick-fire missiles. I guess kids like them, but personally I get a little tired of them being shoe-horned onto every model these days. The legs and mandibles use a part originally from Hero Factory. The middle legs can be moved up and down, but otherwise their geometry is fixed, which is a shame. An elastic band keeps the mandibles closed.

70706 Crater Creeper

The hover-craft is a nice model in its own right and reminds me of 6815 Exploriens Hovertron from 1996.

70706 Crater Creeper

70706 Crater Creeper

The back of the bug features a trans-red canopy but it's fixed and there's nothing under it except a clip to mount the alien's blaster when not in use, which then doubles as a 'stinger' for the beetle (although I'm not sure that Beetles have stingers!)

70706 Crater Creeper

If the squaddie gets too close the pincers can snap shut to capture him and his craft...

70706 Crater Creeper

Overall opinion

I have always liked building insects and bugs (in fact my model for the building challenge on the Inside Tour was an ant) so I have a soft-spot for models such as this. There isn't a lot of playability, or movement, but it's a good display piece. As with all Galaxy Squad sets, the minifigs are great and perhaps the best aliens LEGO has made to date.

  • Parts: 4 -- nothing new, legs and pincers are not much use other than for, err, legs and pincers
  • Playability: 2 -- not a great deal to do with it, and not a lot of movement
  • Building experience: 4 -- a few SNOT techniques keep it interesting
  • Value for money: 4 -- pretty good at £17.99, $19.99 (10p/11c a piece)
  • Overall: 4 -- a model every Galaxy Squad fan will want

28 comments on this article

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By in United States,

I always wondered; How do you get the sets from getting all smudged up from your fingers while building them? All my sets always get fingerprints and whatnot instantly, whereas; take the picture of the hover for example. It's spotless!

BTW nice review!

BTW P.S. If you recall, the "legs and pincers" were origoinally used for Furno 3.0's (Hero factory) wings. So, that's one more use. Plus, they make a nice bow-and-arrow for Hero Factoryy MOCs. :D

BTW PPS: The minifigs are exactly the same as the Vermin Vaporizer, with the exception of the Green Robot included in the latter.

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By in United Kingdom,


Thanks Huw, we've missed your reviews. Excellent as usual.
If only I could afford to buy every theme these would be a great addition however my priority is the licensed stuff.
With your reviews I can imagine I own them ;-).

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By in Canada,

^^ I am a bit 'OCD' about that actually, I wash my hands before building and usually several times more while building. I hate fingerprints on my models!

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By in Indonesia,

Huw; Really? Last country? I think it only started showing here about 2 weeks ago...And not even the whole first wave!

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By in France,

Nice review ! The hoover craft is beautiful but really small...

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By in United Kingdom,

@Huw, may be a silly question, but are your reviews out of 10 or 5?

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By in Canada,

5

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By in United States,

@Huw- Oh, okay. Thanks so much! ;D

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By in Switzerland,

I'll be interested to see how these sell. Personally i don't find them that interesting, which has more to do with the feeling that the theme is very made-up and incoherent. -Ok, so it's all about robot space insects piloted by alien-looking guys. Hmm, yeah, fine.

It's also a theme, like Chima, dominated by vehicles, wacky vehicles and no real buildings or bases.

I thought Atlantis was similar, not insanely great and didn't perform all that well at retail.

What does everyone else think?

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By in United States,

@kingbrick - Also, it seems derivative of the bug space theme Lego did in the 90's, Insectasoids or whatever. They must have decided to redo it to take advantage of the new pieces and colors, much like bringing Space Police back.

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By in United Kingdom,

Clean soft white cotton gloves will keep fingerprints off your Lego. :)
Then you have to close it away in sealed cabinets to keep anyone from touching it.

I am not a huge fan of wacky vehicles so I can give this theme a miss. Saving my money for Orthanc and the Black Gate. :)

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By in United Kingdom,

I bought myself this set a few days ago, and I must say @Huw, you have summed this set up great!

However, my personal opinion is that the back end, where the space blaster clips on, they could have done a cocoon mounting instead like there is on the Warp Stinger. Would have added more function to the set, and another reason to collect the set.

The little function that the model does have, the mandibles, works better than expected too.

But, you got two sticker sheets, I only got one in my set.

I embrace any set, vehicle or building, from any theme that looks undoubtedly cool. This is one of them. As I said, a great review!

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By in Bulgaria,

Great review! Keep up the good work! :)

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By in United Kingdom,

Excellent review Huw. These sets are on my wish list after the Summer Star Wars sets (which I have got) and the Lord of the Rings sets. Perhaps they will make something good to ask for at Christmas...

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By in Netherlands,

Thanks for your review. I was planning on buying this set but after reading about the not movable legs the only interesting thing left is the red canopy. I'll get the vermin vaporizer instead. It looks like that set is more value for the money.

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By in United States,

@Huw
I thought I was the only one who washed my hands that much when building!! ;D

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By in Germany,

Oh, how the times are changing! 11c a piece is "pretty good" now.

I barely ever pay 11c a piece even with licensed sets — and I'd still call that a ripoff.

10c is par for the course. We all know that. 8c with Creator, 7c with Modular Buildings, and it can go all the way down to 3c with some Games or Mosaic sets. And these give you a nice assortment of highly reusable parts to boot.

By giving a set with 11c/piece a 4 out of 5, we leave no room for all these sets that really are a bargain, and way too much room for daylight robbery. I mean, how much would the Crater Creeper have to cost to get a 3 out of 5 for the price? A 1 out of 5?

(Likewise, I'm not sure how "parts — nothing new, legs and pincers are not much use other than for, err, legs and pincers" is a 4 out of 5. Sounds more like a 2 out of 5 to me. So yeah, a thorough review as always, but the final rating leaves me scratching my head in disbelief.)

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By in Canada,

^ Reviews are of course subjective. Others will put different weights on aspects of the set and come up with different scores. Do please review it yourself.

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By in United States,

I have never been a fan of flick missiles. Huw, did seem your money's worth?

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By in United States,

@Huw - Like you and Dragon_Master_48, I wash my hands a great deal when building! Thanks for sharing my 'OCD' nature on this matter.

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By in Canada,

Probably my least favourite of the new Galaxy Squad sets, but it still looks pretty good.

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By in United Kingdom,

Nice review Huw. Out of the three sets i've built so far, this has actually been my favourite. That said, I've got 70707 to build tomorrow, which I'm definitely looking forward to.

I think you were just lucky to get two sets of stickers in your box. So far, I've only had one set of stickers per Galaxy Squad set.

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By in United States,

Great review Huw! And by the way, I gave up washing my hands, I just wear those blue plastic glove. Yea, OCD, I know. :P

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By in United States,

Great review Huw! BTW, do the legs that move have a elastic band to keep them from wiggling around?

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By in United States,

Thanks for doing the Galaxy Squad reviews. I have the first wave now and am waiting for the second wave to go on sale. I agree with you about the flick missiles, liked the ball shooters from Warp Stinger & Star Slicer much more.

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By in United States,

@ Huw, No offence but shouldn't you remove this from the 'Hot topics' bar? It's getting a bit old..

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By in United States,

really cool set .good printing .I Like how the alien bug can grab the hover craft with it's fangs ;] .

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