August 2015 marks the 20th anniversary of The Power of the Force toy line, which started a new era of Star Wars toys and collectibles in 1995. The toy line which was given the same name as the previous and final vintage toy line in 1985, ran for five years from August 1995 until the middle of 2000. The line (affectionately dubbed POTF2 by collectors) as a whole was huge with plenty of figures, vehicles, creatures, multi-packs, playsets, pack-ins, mail-aways and exclusives. The Power of the Force line of figures are fairly easy to find even 20 years after their debut, which is very likely a result of collectors stocking up on figures, hoping for the toys to increase in value in the same way the vintage line has.
The figures listed are in no particular order.
To this day, 20 years after The Power Of The Force toy line debuted, the Royal Guard figure still stands out and holds up nicely among modern figures. The figure doesn't have a lot of articulation, but it does excactely what it should do, stand up straight and guard the elevator door to the Emperor's throne room! Even though the figure doesn't have a lot of movable parts, the beautiful and accurate sculpt of the figure makes up for it. You can probably track this figure down at a convention or online for less than $10 shipped!
At the time of his creation, Bossk was a figure ahead of his time. David Vennemeyer’s sculpt on this figure was so accurate that he wasn’t resculpted until 2004 (over 7 years later). From the detailing of his scaling to the nod to his vintage counterpart with the way he holds his weapon, this figure is one of early Hasbro’s finest.
This Snowtrooper, which was released in the Power Of The Force Deluxe line, came bundled together with a Heavy Repeating Blaster. This is another figure from The Power Of The Force line which doesn't have a lot of articulation, but it does exactly what it's supposed to do: stand behind the Heavy Repeating Blaster and look mighty cool! This set looks fantastic in any Hoth inspired display, even when compared to modern figures.
You can check out a hi-res picture of the full set here: Snowtrooper with Heavy Repeating Blaster
This EU figure is not one of POTF2’s best because he hails from Dark Horse Comic’s popular Dark Empire series but because he is a direct extension of Kenner’s vintage line. In the year following the original Power of the Force, Kenner pitched unsuccessfully The Epic Continues line which featured the Imperial Sentinel although by the alternate name of Atha Prime. This figure may not have loads of articulation but its commanding height and intimidating vintage-ish battle ax staff makes this figure’s glowing red eyes even more impressive.
When this figure was first released back in 1998 it was exciting. Getting an articulated wrist and being able to position the lightsaber differently in Luke's hand was truly fantastic at the time. Unfortunately the figure doesn't hold up all too well when compared to more modern Bespin Luke Skywalker figures. Despite its shortcomings though, it still ranks as a favorite here at JediBusiness.com.
Hasbro’s second swing at possibly the most popular cantina character was a homerun. This figure improved on the designs of their 1996 attempt in a number of ways. Firstly his proportions on his head and torso are much more screen accurate. His knee articulation, lacking from all previous incarnations, allow this figure to reenact his most famous scene with Han Solo while actually sitting. And speaking of Han Solo, his mark can be found hidden inside Greedo’s vest in the form of a blaster hole!
This Emperor Palpatine is probably one of the best sculpted Star Wars action figures ever released. This figure is old (almost 20 years as of this post!) and it still is the best representation in the entire 3 3/4 inch line of a Return Of The Jedi Emperor Palpatine when he arrived on the second Death Star. The wrinkles on the plastic robe look great, the head sculpt, even the crooked cane looks nice! It's not a very articulated figure, but it's the look that counts, and this figure looks amazing in a "Arrival Of Palpatine" diorama.
This gem of a figure was hidden toward the end of The Power of the Force 2’s run in their Flashback series. The weathering on this scene specific 3PO is some of the best Hasbro has ever done. Perfectly weathered and covered with sand this protocol droid even featured a removable arm from his fright-filled fall in the Jundland Wastes.
During the vintage times Kenner never released a Sandtrooper, so this figure was very exciting to get! Doesn't it look cool even after all those years? The way the trooper grabs the blaster rifle and leans just a little bit to the side - now that's cool! It's just something which can't be replicated with super articulated figures, you can get close, but it just never looks 100%. So kudos to Kenner/Hasbro for releasing this trooper!
This Fan Club exclusive figure is still to this day the only sculpted version of this figure ever released. It depicts the characters girth and facial likeness with great accuracy. The figures paint aps are also a lot of fun as it features a believable 5 o’clock shadow and even a silver painted ring. His droid detector accessory is also an added bonus for diorama builders as well.
If you'd like to listen to Chris from JediBusiness.com, and the gang from the Galaxy Of Toys Podcast (with special guest Matt Fox from ThisWeekInStarWars.com) talk about 20 years of The Power Of The Force collecting, check this out: