The LEGO Clone Trooper theme currently features several models with different types of troopers in their titles. The 501st Legion Clone Trooper 75280 and Clone Trooper Command Station 40558 are presently the only sets named after these genetically modified soldiers in the LEGO Star Wars theme.
This article will focus on the 501st Clone Trooper 75280 model because the recently released Clone Trooper Command Station 40558 set is still hard to find. Both of these models have a low piece count, and assembling them doesn’t require a lot of time or effort.
Bottom Line Up Front
Getting a relatively small playset like the 501st Legion Clone Trooper 75280 can be an excellent way to introduce a child to Star Wars and LEGO. This set is easy to build, and it features toys and accessories that can keep kids engaged in play for hours.
See also: Best LEGO stormtrooper sets
The Ins and Outs of the LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers 75280 Set
LEGO released the first clone trooper Minifigures in 2002, just a few years after launching the Star Wars theme. Since then, the company introduced more than twenty variants of this Minifigure that were accompanied by guns, black ARC armors, Phase I helmets, and similar accessories.
Different versions of these Minifigures appear in over thirty Star Wars sets published in the last twenty years.
The 501st Legion Clone Trooper 75280 set was released in August 2020. It features redesigned 501st Legion clone trooper Minifigures modeled after their appearance in the Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.
Earlier variants of these Minifigures had blue arms, and their legs weren’t decorated. The 501st Legion Clone Trooper 75280 set has 285 pieces, and it is suitable for LEGO fans aged seven or older. Even though the set spent nearly two years on the market, LEGO still hasn’t announced its exit date.
See also: Best LEGO Clone Wars Sets
Packaging and Building Instructions
This set arrives in a standard LEGO and Star Wars-branded box that features illustrations of BARC Speeder and AT-RT Walker toys on its cover, along with clone trooper and battle droid figures engaged in battle.
Information regarding age group recommendation, set’s ID number, and title and piece count is also included on the front side of the box. The box’s underside has a similar illustration to the one on the cover, as well as two images that demonstrate the AT-RT Walker’s features.
The contents of the box include two bags of pieces, a sticker sheet, and an 84-page building instruction booklet. The leaflet doesn’t contain information about the 501st legion clone troopers, and it takes you directly into the construction process.
The construction of the toys and Minifigures featured in this set takes place in two stages, and both stages have around ninety steps.
See also: Best LEGO Star Wars Helmets
An Overview of the Set’s Pieces and Minifigures
This set contains a combination of standard LEGO bricks, slopes, pins, or tiles. However, none of these System or Technic parts are rare or exclusive to the 501st Legion Clone Troopers set. Pieces are split into two bags, and they’re predominantly grey and blue.
The three redesigned clone trooper Minifigures appear for the first time in this set, and the same design was used for clone trooper Minifigures included in LEGO Star Wars sets released after 2020. These Minifigures have a smaller visor and a different cheek area and feet printing than their earlier versions.
This set contains a single 501st jet trooper Minifigure that has a different armor print on its torso than the regular clone trooper Minifigures. The 501st jet trooper also has blue arms and a jet pack that distinguish it from other Minifigures in the set.
It’s also worth adding that clone and jet trooper Minifigures have removable helmets. Two battle droid figures have a standard look, as their design has remained the same since 2007.
See also: Best LEGO Star Wars Minifigures
Putting the 501st Legion Clone Troopers set together doesn’t take more than an hour, even if you don’t have previous set-building experience. The parts for the BARC Speeder toy, battle droids, and two clone troopers are included in the first bag.
The construction process starts with assembling the battle droids and clone troopers, but these figures have just a few parts, so building them shouldn’t take more than a few minutes. The BARC Speeder toy’s base is composed of several blue and gray 2×16 plates.
During the first stage of the construction process, you’ll assemble the toy’s seat and rear end and then move on to build its steering wheel, stud shooters, and other elements located in the front section. This stage has 34 steps, and it shouldn’t take you long to go through it.
The second bag contains the pieces you’ll need to build the AT-RT Walker toy, clone trooper, and jet trooper Minifigures. The toy’s cockpit is constructed at the beginning mostly from plate and triangle flag parts, and once you complete it, you’ll progress to assembling its posable legs.
It’s essential to check if the stud shooters on both toys are functioning before you complete each stage of the construction process.
See also: Best LEGO Boba Fett Sets
A Glance at the Finished Models
The BARC Speeder and AT-RT Walker toys don’t seem impressive compared to starfighter, gunship, or cruiser toys featured in other LEGO Star Wars sets. Both toys have stud shooters and feature holders for blaster guns.
The BARC Speeder’s design is simple since the toy doesn’t offer much more than a seat for one of the Minifigures and a pair of stud shooters. Both toys are compact, as they don’t measure more than 7 inches tall or six inches long, which makes them easily portable.
The set’s real value lies in its Minifigures, since three clone troopers have new designs, while the jet trooper and battle droids allow for more play options.
See also: LEGO Mandalorian Sets
The 501st Legion Clone Troopers model comes with six play figures that enable kids to stage moderately complex battles. Also, the addition of blaster guns for all of the figures and Minifigures is a nice detail that contributes to the set’s playability.
Aside from these weapons, a jet pack, and a pair of electrobinoculars, the set doesn’t have other accessories. The inclusion of stud shooters on both toys compensates for the lack of accessories to a degree but doesn’t change the fact that the set offers limited playing options.
However, as an entry-level set, the 501st Legion Clone Troopers wasn’t meant to have a lot of accessories. In my opinion, its playability is excellent for a LEGO set with fewer than 300 pieces. Our guide to the best 1500 piece LEGO set can help you find a model that offers more playing options.
Value and Price
Star Wars theme has more than thirty sets priced over $50, including twelve models that cost $100 or more. The 501st Legion Clone Troopers is one of the most affordable models in the LEGO Star Wars theme since you can purchase it from the manufacturer for $30.
Comparing the set’s prices at different online or brick-and-mortar stores is important because some retailers offer this model for nearly $50. This set isn’t collectible, and even though its price will inevitably increase after its retirement, it is still unlikely that its value will exceed $100.
LEGO still hasn’t made the exit date for this 2020 model public, and it is hard to say how much longer this set will stay in production. However, the 501st Legion Clone Troopers model will probably be discontinued by the end of 2022.
See also: Best LEGO General Grievous Sets
Pros and Cons of the LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set
- Excellent playability for a set of its size
- It features four Clone Trooper Minifigures and two battle droid figures
- AT-RT Walker and BARC Speeder toys are easy to build
- Small and easily portable
- An affordable price
- It’s great for young and inexperienced LEGO builders
- Low piece count
- Children over ten might find this set uninteresting
- A limited assortment of accessories
The Best Alternatives to the LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set
Finding a replacement or complimentary Star Wars set for the LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers model is easy because numerous sets in this theme feature these soldiers. Moreover, you can also opt for a model featuring stormtroopers, dark troopers, or scout troopers.
Keep in mind that most substitutes for this set cost more than $30 and that some models might not be suitable for a seven-year-old. I’ve listed several alternatives to the LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers sets, so let’s look at their features.
Snowtrooper Battle Pack 75320
I recommend using the Snowtrooper Battle Back 75320 as an extension of the 501st Legion Clone Troopers set since snowtroopers are clone trooper units trained for combat in winter conditions. The battle pack comes with three snowtrooper Minifigures and Hoth Scout Trooper Minifigure.
An imperial Hoth speeder bike, a snow trench, and an E-Web repeating blaster with stud-shooting functionality are also included in the battle back. Blaster gun and rifle accessories are available for each of the set’s Minifigures.
However, this battle pack doesn’t include other accessories kids can use to recreate scenes from The Empire Strikes Back movie.
Imperial Armored Marauder 75311
The Imperial Armored Marauder 75311 is inspired by the events depicted in the second season of the Mandalorian TV series, and it doesn’t contain clone troopers. Instead, this set comes with Greef Karga, two stormtrooper Minifigures, and a unique artillery stormtrooper Minifigure.
The Imperial Armored Marauder toy has a two-seat cabin, an adjustable turret with two stud shooters, stud shooters at the front, and a pair of non-shooting foldout blaster cannons. This set also features a mortar gun and blaster pistols for stormtroopers and Greef Karga Minifigures.
The model has 478 pieces, and it is slightly more expensive than the 501st Legion Clone Troopers set.
Imperial TIE Fighter 75300
Modeled after one of the most recognizable starfighters in the original Star Wars trilogy, the Imperial TIE Fighter 75300 set can help you recreate scenes from classic Star Wars movies.
It features stormtrooper, TIE Fighter pilot Minifigures armed with blaster pistols, and a NI-L8 Protocol Droid figure. The TIE Fighter toy has a centrally positioned single-seat cockpit and stud shooters, but it lacks details and advanced functionalities offered by toys included in bigger LEGO Star Wars sets.
This model doesn’t have a lot of accessories, which limits its range of play options.
Frequently Asked Questions about LEGO 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set
Question: Can I Display the Toys from the 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set?
Answer: Yes, you can, but keep in mind that both AT-RT Walker and BARC Speeder toys measure just a few inches.
Question: Are Digital Building Instructions for the 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set Available?
Answer: Yes, the QR code that grants you access to the digital building instructions is included in the leaflet that comes with the set.
Question: How Many Stickers Does the 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set Have?
Answer: The sticker sheet contains just ten stickers.
Question: Does the 501st Legion Clone Troopers Set Contain Tiny Pieces?
Answer: Yes, it does, and you shouldn’t allow preschoolers to use this set unsupervised.
I don’t think that the 501st Legion Clone Troopers 75280 is among the best sets you can find in the LEGO Star Wars theme.
Its low piece count, limited functionalities of BARC Speeder and AT-RT Walker toys, or a narrow assortment of accessories are some of the reasons why this model can’t compete with the theme’s best sets.
On the other hand, the 501st Legion Clone Troopers is an affordable entry-level model with plenty to offer to young LEGO fans. This model also features three redesigned clone troopers that can be a valuable addition to a Minifigure collection.
Was this LEGO Clone Trooper review useful? Let me know in the comments, or continue reading our LEGO Razor Crest review to learn more about this Star Wars set.