Review: 70707 CLS-89 Eradicator Mech
70707 CLS-89 Eradicator Mech is the second of four Galaxy Squad sets to be released in the second half of 2013.
It weighs in at 440 pieces for £35 / US$40 and consists of a mech, two bugs, a orange Galaxy Squad trooper that BrickLink calls 'Jack Fireblade', and his robotic sidekick.
So, alien bugs and a mech, what's not to like...
Box and contents
As usual, the back of the box shows the movement and play features of the set which, in this case, are significant. More on them later...
The QR code currently leads nowhere. I guess the purpose of it is so you can see the set in action while in the shop. Good luck getting a signal in Toys R Us though...
Three numbered bags, two instruction books and just the one sticker sheet in this set. Bag one builds the bugs, bag two the top of the mech, bag three its legs and arms.
Jack Fireblade and his robotic sidekick, both of whom have appeared in earlier sets. Unfortunately there are no alien minifigs in this set and that is a criticism of the Galaxy Squad series: there are too few bugs -- how is one expected to build a swarm of them?
The robot is excellent, with a new armour piece and wings that clip to it. I believe of the four Galaxy Squad factions (red, green, blue and orange) it's only the orange one that has these pieces.
There are two bugs, designed to appear to be from the same genus, but one is winged. Both feature the cool new bulbous pieces used for the gaster. If you don't know already, you'll see what they are good for later :-)
Why though, do they only have four legs? I know they are alien and thus don't necessarily follow the same evolutionary rules as on Earth, but I think they'd look so much better with six legs, for the sake of eight more pieces. They have a tendency to collapse when you touch them so an additional two legs would help prevent this. I made the same observation when I reviewed 70700 Space Swarmer.
The orange and white mech stands about 20cm tall. It makes a lot of use of the new right-angle brackets to implement SNOT techniques on much of the model.
The hips swivel, the legs are jointed at the hips and ankle, and the arms at the shoulder. That's a good range of movement, but it could be better, and usually is when AFOLs build mechs.
A view of the back. Note the flick-fire missiles on the right arm. The slightly strange looking 2 x 2 round bricks on the backs of the legs are to prevent it topping backwards.
What on earth is the robot doing upside down on the back, I hear you ask? Read on to find out...
The cockpit can be removed and swooshed around.
It has thrusters at the back and a small, what I think is a bomb-bay with a hinged door. More flick-fire missiles grace the wings.
With the cockpit removed the mech looks like this...
The back is hinged, so after it's been turned 90 degrees down...
... and rotated, the robot is now piloting the mech! How clever is that! The back of the box calls this the 'Mech Exosuit' and the cockpit bit 'Galaxy Jet'.
The transforming nature of the mech is a very clever feature that adds a lot of playability to the set. Also, as I'm sure you know or have worked out, the squaddie can be inserted into the gaster and left to be digested in the bugs juices (or something like that...)
It was an interesting set to build, particularly as I wasn't aware of the transforming feature. On several occasions I wondered what the subassembly was that I was building and how it was going to fit onto the model (sorry if I've now spoiled that surprise for you).
So, two great looking bugs and an interesting mech, what's not to like? Well, a couple of things actually, the bugs really should have six legs and one or two alien minifigs would have been nice. Other than that it's a top set.
Scores, out of 5:
- Parts: 5 -- a very good selection of useful parts. Nothing unique, but a lot in new or rare colours.
- Playability: 5 -- there's a lot of fun to be had with this set.
- Building experience: 4 -- not challenging, but very interesting.
- Value for money: 4 -- I thought it's pretty good value for what's in it and the playability it provides. There's more to 'value for money' than the price per piece...
- Overall: 4.5 -- An extra 4 legs would have made it a 5.