Review: 75237 TIE Fighter Attack

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View image at flickr

Star Wars can be enjoyed by viewers of various age groups, including young children who may only recently have been introduced to the saga. Expanding the LEGO theme to target a younger audience therefore seems sensible and the first 4+ wave includes three iconic vehicles from the Original Trilogy.

75237 TIE Fighter Attack contains just 77 pieces, several of which are large so are ideal for junior builders. Nevertheless, this model seems to capture the source material with reasonable accuracy and I hope it will provide considerable play value as well, given the comparatively young target age range for this set.

Minifigures

75095 TIE Fighter was released in 2015 and came with a unique TIE Fighter Pilot, featuring metallic silver streaks across the helmet. The same component has appeared in several subsequent sets and looks fantastic as these silver designs contrast with the black piece underneath. Removing the helmet reveals a Clone Trooper head which is alright, although I would prefer some variation between Imperial characters.

75237 TIE Fighter Attack

The torso and legs are also available on earlier minifigures but they look great, accurately replicating the uniforms worn by these pilots in the films. I am particularly impressed with the colourful highlights on the life support pack and the printed gas transfer hoses are excellent. This pilot is equipped with a black blaster pistol.

75237 TIE Fighter Attack

Rebel forces wear varied uniforms but the classic Rebel Fleet Trooper is exceptionally popular and its return is welcome, six years after its last appearance in 75011 Tantive IV & Planet Alderaan. The figure includes an updated torso design with some realistic creases on his sand blue shirt and pockets on the vest. These correspond with the movies but should probably be slightly less prominent in my opinion.

75237 TIE Fighter Attack

Moreover, the head has been improved and now features two facial expressions beside a printed chin strap that lines up perfectly with the helmet. This component attracted significant attention when it was introduced in 2009 and it looks pretty good, although the black visor is not an ideal shape in relation to the onscreen design. The soldier carries a pearl silver blaster rifle.

75237 TIE Fighter Attack

The Completed Model

Limited attention has been paid to the Rebel base on Yavin IV so this command station is reasonably appealing and features a new computer display which shows the approaching Death Star. I appreciate this printed piece but some Aurebesh text, perhaps identifying its weakness, might have been pleasing. Two reddish brown boxes are included too, forming additional scenery for the minifigures to take cover behind.

TIE-series vehicles have been an enduring feature of the LEGO Star Wars theme since 1999 and the latest version appears somewhat reminiscent of early models, measuring 14cm in height. It does look small beside modern minifigure-scale TIE Fighters but feels adequately substantial for a craft which is intended almost exclusively for play and its famed silhouette is immediately recognisable.

View image at flickr

Some colourful pieces are found inside the cockpit but it looks good from the exterior. The structure is designed around a light bluish grey piece which appears reasonably faithful to the source material and provides plenty of space for the pilot inside. There are no controls but twin trans-red laser cannons are included and I like the printed viewport, although this actually belongs to 75168 Yoda's Jedi Starfighter rather than past TIE Fighters.

View image at flickr

Another 6x6 hatch component forms the rear of the cockpit. This example is not decorated which is slightly disappointing but it does open to reveal two clips for keeping blasters. I am quite pleased with this function, despite its simplicity, as such details are rarely found in Juniors or 4+ sets. Moreover, the dark bluish grey hatch has appeared only once before.

View image at flickr

Enormous 14x18 hexagonal plates form each solar array panels and these are linked to the cockpit using Technic pins with low friction. Unfortunately, this causes the wings to wobble, reminding me of early LEGO TIE Fighters which suffered from a similar issue. This is disappointing but also provides further play opportunities as you can easily detach both wings, as though they have been destroyed during battle!

View image at flickr

Overall

75237 TIE Fighter Attack is probably my favourite of the new 4+ sets. TIE Fighters consist primarily of simple geometric shapes so using larger pieces has little impact upon the appearance of this rendition when compared with others. There is limited detail and the wing connection could be strengthened but this model offers great potential for play and its price of £17.99 or $19.99 is reasonable for a vehicle of this size.

View image at flickr

Furthermore, the set contains an exclusive Rebel Fleet Trooper minifigure and a new printed console! These are probably the only features which may interest adults but I think younger Star Wars fans will enjoy this whole set and look forward to learning what other 4+ models might become available in the future.

I hope you have found this review informative. Let us know by liking this article and share your thoughts on the set in the comments below.

This set was provided for review by The LEGO Group but the review is an expression of my own opinions.

34 comments on this article

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By in United States,

This wave was so forgettable that Brickset is still publishing reviews almost 4 months later

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By in United Kingdom,

That Rebel Trooper is a tantalizing reminder of the Tantive IV that might be looming on the horizon.

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By in United States,

I want a 4+ Death Star. Comprised of 72 pieces. But still the same size as the regular version.

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By in United Kingdom,

I love this set, and appreciate the review.

@your future president

Hmmm, a mini-minifig scale Death Star is a pretty good idea! I'd buy that.

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By in United States,

That rebel trooper looks a bit smug to me, honestly. I guess he's gloating about having to buy a $20 4+ set to get him?

All joking aside, I might actually pick this one up. That main body has some interesting angles and so could be interesting to integrate into a space MOC, and the figs/prints are great.

Although that cockpit looks weird upside down.

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By in Canada,

Still hope to one day see Star Wars DUPLO be a thing. How new are the large hex panels from this TIE fighter?

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By in United States,

Has anyone else had an issue with the Rebel Trooper helmet not clutching the head tightly enough to hang on? It's falling off at the slightest movement.

I would have considered this a one-off, except I noticed this as far back as 7688. Something with the mold itself?

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By in United States,

This is actually my favorite set of 2019 so far. It's very simple, very fun, and reminds me a lot of the Tie fighters I built as a kid.

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By in United Kingdom,

Thankyou, Just watched Episode IV with my daughter and was just thinking I haven't seen many Rebel Fleet Troopers, turns out I have two, but now ticked Wanted on this one. Will have to try to add the diagonal lines on the wings mind. Couple of rarish figures and a basic Tie Fighther for £15 (it'll be on sale soon) can't complain

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By in Netherlands,

Those wing plates are an interesting shape, for such a large piece I wonder where else they'd be used in the future.

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By in Sweden,

Oddly enough, I will not let my 4 year old watch star wars. I admit that I haven't seen the cartoons, but the movies are rated 11+ here. So the toys are cool, but he's not really got any idea what they are. I'm just as happy if 'war toys' with guns aren't marketed towards my kid who cried today when I peeled his banana before his sister's.... His understanding of reality is weak enough as is. :P so nope, won't be buying this!

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By in United States,

I think $20 for a set with 77pcs. is a ridiculous price! The other 4+ sets are all overpriced in my opinion. But, it is cool to see the Rebel Trooper return.

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By in United Kingdom,

Just...why? Star Wars sets like this one are simple in the main line so I don’t really get why this exists...

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By in Australia,

I hope my Rebel Trooper doesn’t have misaligned eyebrows like yours.

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By in France,

Perfect for the age category but not for AFOLs

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By in United States,

I like the simplicity of the TIE Fighter. My one complaint is something I've seen on numerous recent sets - the inclusion of near useless side builds. In this case, it's wasting pieces on the Rebel console.

Eliminate the Rebel minifig and eliminate the tiny console. Reduce the price $5.

At least the set doesn't come with the stud shooting blasters.

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By in United States,

Since the leaks seem to strongly indicate that we will be getting some Lego fleet troopers in a UCS or large playset at least Tantive IV later this year; I think this figure will become a little bit more common but this will still be the cheapest set he will be in. Which is a pity, I would love to see a proper battlepack with these guys (our last battlepack for fleet troopers was in 2007 or so?). They are the very first 'troopers' we see in the whole saga, even before the stormtroopers show up; so I would love to have a small collection of them to join my Rebel forces.

Speaking of that rumored UCS set... Bail Organa... ;)

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By in United States,

I've been hoping for an updated Rebel Fleet Trooper for years but something about this guy feels off to me. Can't seem to put my finger on what.

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By in United States,

Does anyone else think this seems like a cost-effective way to get a whole fleet of TIE Fighters?

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By in Singapore,

Definitely my most favourite of the 4+ sets. I haven't bought a Star Wars set since First Order Battle Pack came out three years ago. The price of the main sets these days are just way too expensive for me. The latest Imperial TIE Fighter set is also based on a spin-off film instead of the original trilogy, which really puts me off. This provides a cheaper alternative and saves up alot of space at home too. And unlike battle packs, this one doesn't even have stud shooters!

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By in Germany,

And here I thought TLG has learned the lesson the last time they decided it was a good idea to produce huge, specialized pieces that can be used for exactly one function in one kind of model. (Like the airplane nose, wing, tail pieces)

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By in Germany,

I like some of the pieces in this set, plus the figures, but not enough to pay 20 Euro for the whole set. Then again, this will certainly turn up at a substantial discount someday, probably as early as around Easter, so I might get it then.

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By in United Kingdom,

I like the set and appreciate the large hull piece makes for easy building. But from a parts point of view I think the big hexagonal plates are spoiled by having the technic pin mounts permanently embedded in the underside.

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By in United States,

@DaftArcher20968, it's pretty clear why this set exists; so younger Lego fans can enjoy Star Wars model without having to worry about bigger sets. While many Lego sets may not seem complicated or hard to us, it's quite different for a 4 year old. This is a great way to give a Star Wars set that caters to younger kids but works regular System parts. I'm not too fond of the price considering what you get, but I like these little sets.

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By in United States,

There is no picture of the back with the hatch down

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By in United States,

@TeriXeri: They're pretty cool, I agree! They could make a cool new way to make a helicopter or spaceship landing pad, I imagine (getting some slight Blacktron-era space landing pad baseplate vibes thinking of that, but in this case it's a form more conducive to being elevated above ground level).

@DaftArcher20968: Regular LEGO Star Wars TIE Fighters definitely USED to be closer to this level of simplicity, but lately they've gotten practically as complex as the types of MOCs that many AFOLs build!

Like, in the case of the most recent one (75211-1), you have an unconventional use of hinges to attach the diagonal bands on the outsides of the "wings", unconventional use of clips to attach the "wings" themselves to the support struts and to wrap the grey outer perimeter around them, the construction of the "wing" surface from several layers of same-color plates, wedges, brackets, and tiles, many different points at which you have to flip parts of the model backwards or upside-down, over 500 pieces, and over 100 building steps.

It's not that a kid who is super attentive and motivated can't build a sets recommended for much older kids. But less experienced builders are unlikely to realize how much attentiveness and patience is even expected of them.

You also have to keep in mind that the 4+ sets (and equivalent themes from the past like Jack Stone/4 Juniors, the early 2000s Mickey Mouse sets, and Fabuland) are intended to be buildable by kids young enough that they may have never built a single non-Duplo set before!

And so not only is the size of most System parts different than these builders are used to, for the most part the same can be said of most building techniques beyond basic stacking, let alone differentiating between a much wider range of similar sized and shaped bricks, plates, tiles, pins, axles, beams, wedges, and so forth than you would typically find in a Duplo set or even in many LEGO Classic brick buckets.

As I realized last week when trying to help a 4-year-old cousin play a relatively simple Kirby game for the Nintendo Switch, sometimes kids this young might even have a hard time understanding and following pictorial instructions and understanding the physical action they correspond to.

Many also struggle to differentiate between shapes that are mirror images of one another. Consider how many preschoolers and kindergarteners mix up the lowercase letters b and d or p and q when writing… now, think about how many LEGO wedge pieces might appear in a typical Star Wars set that have separate left and right counterparts, or LEGO bracket pieces there are that might have separate "up" and "down" counterparts!

A lot of kids this age also don't have the greatest patience or manual dexterity yet, so sets where completing a single vehicle or building takes several hundred fiddly little pieces before they can take a break to play with it are not ideal for them.

I've seen actual adults who aren't experienced builders become frustrated with even simpler sets than 9–14 ones like the Imperial TIE Fighter, just because despite their age, they just don't have the experience to know all the different things they have to pay attention to to ensure they attach all the correct pieces in the correct places facing the correct direction.

For instance, not to dunk on Huw (:P), but I had to correct him twice on the placement of the side panels in his Furno Jet Machine review (https://brickset.com/article/9461/review-44018-furno-jet-machine)!

Huw, of course, is an extremely experienced builder in his own right, but not with the particular Character and Creature Building System used in that set, so he didn't even know that mistakes like that were something he had to be on the lookout for, and as such it negatively impacted his impression of the set's appearance until he corrected it.

Now imagine a person doing that who not only has no experience with the parts and techniques themselves, but is also so young they still haven't memorized the distinction between "left and "right". Sounds a little trickier, right?

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By in United States,

(continued) Finally, speaking as an autistic person, it's important to remember that many kids don't hit developmental "milestones" at the same time or in the same order. This includes things like the visual-spatial skills to read and interpret LEGO instructions, the counting skills to place parts in the correct position on a large grid of studs, the attentiveness to notice callouts like the "turn around" symbol (or remember which side is the "top" and which is the "bottom" when the bumps you once used to differentiate those two things in Duplo models face nearly every direction), etc.

I (and probably many of us) am lucky enough that the skills that came naturally to me were suited to LEGO building, though for a long time I needed my dad's help with stuff that demanded stronger fine motor skills like applying stickers or tying knots in string. But I also witnessed friends and relatives the same age as me or older struggling to follow directions for sets that I thought of as "easy".

And since many of the skills I did struggle with were social in nature, the last thing I needed was for the LEGO hobby as a whole to be frustrating and alienating for people who had different skills than I did, but who I might have otherwise bonded with over a shared interest.

I guess that's part of why for me, I want the LEGO hobby to be as inclusive as possible… and that means not every theme can revolve around the kind of 7+ to 9+ builds that show up most often in my own favorite themes like Ninjago or Elves, nor revolve around my particular interests in character-driven, action-adventure, playfully anachronistic escapist fantasy.

Some kids, even well within the target age range for more advanced and imaginative themes, are going to prefer building LEGO City race cars at a 5+ or 6+ level. I'd rather let them grow up to love LEGO as much as we do than feel like a fun-looking toy is punishing them for not having as strong an attention to detail as people with far more building experience or proficiency in certain building-related skills. LEGO should be for everyone!

@guachi: I think the reason for those "side builds" and characters makes sense when you consider that LEGO usually wants to think about sets as if they're the first set a person has bought from that theme (particularly in the case of these 4+ sets, aimed at beginner-level builders).

The premise of Star Wars as a whole is the conflict between good vs. evil. If a kid has no other Star Wars sets, then an "evil" ship with no "good" people or things to be in conflict with is not a complete play scenario. And I think most kids and parents would much rather get a $20 set that gives them even the bare minimum to play out a complete scenario, than a $15 set that then forces them to pay $10 to $15 more to really unlock its play potential.

Also, given the purpose of Juniors/4+ to introduce kids to parts and building techniques they haven't used before, but at a basic level, it helps for them to include not just the types of parts and techniques that might typically be used for vehicles (wings or wheels, cockpits or chassis, windscreens, steering wheels or controls, etc), but also the types of parts and techniques that might show up in other sets for building scenery and props.

And in any set with this few pieces to begin with, a secondary build gives kids a slightly bigger selection of parts they can then mix and match to rebuild the set into their own original creations.

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By in United States,

@Aanchir

I agree with your point about developmental milestones. Also being autistic, I taught myself to read at around age three, but didn't grasp simple math until much later.

Personally I like the bigger pieces. They're great for kids; my 4-yo cousin assembled the car from the TLNM Juniors set with ease; and also they're fun to integrate into MOCs; the challenge makes it interesting, and they can provide excellent methods of achieving unusual shapes.

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By in United States,

When comments are longer than the review I think there is an issue with the commenter.

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By in United States,

@David1985, you are incredibly ignorant. Insulting and offensive in fact. @Anachir’s comments are welcome compared to the normal “this sucks even though I’m not the target”. He’s courteous and well thought out, unlike you and quite a few others. Don’t bother posting again.

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By in United States,

@David1985: I have several issues, including autism spectrum disorder, ADHD, and difficulty keeping my thoughts brief, which I openly acknowledge. Can you say the same for yours?

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By in Israel,

@Aanchir: I like reading in-depth long comments such as yours, this is what this site is for!
keep going pal!

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By in United States,

@Aanchir: I also enjoy your comments, and if I didn't, it would be very easy to just skip over them, so: please continue! It's not as though your long comments prevent anyone else from commenting.

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