Throughout decades movies and TV Series from the Star Wars franchise featured a myriad of Super, Venator, Resurgent, Sith, Imperial, and Mega Star Destroyers. In this LEGO Star Destroyer review, I will examine the properties of a USC set inspired by one of the earliest Star Destroyer versions in Star Wars history.
The Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 lets you create a replica of the Devastator starship, as seen in the opening shots of the Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope. The build-to-display model is designed for adult fans with a considerable set-building experience.
Bottom Line Up Front
As one of the largest Star Wars sets LEGO has ever released, the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 is unquestionably a fantastic set for any fan searching for a challenging build. The model’s price, weight, size, and demanding construction process are among its downsides.
See also: LEGO Imperial Shuttle review
The Ins and Outs of the LEGO Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Set
- Release date: October 1, 2019
- Piece count: 4,784
- Age group: 18+
- Price range: $$$$
Star Wars building kits inspired by Star Destroyers are by no means a novelty. The history of these LEGO sets spans over two decades, so the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 is the most recent in a long line of large and small-scale models of one of the most famous starships in the Star Wars universe.
Here are a few earlier LEGO sets inspired by the Devastator Star Destroyer.
Miniature scale models of this starship were included in the following retired LEGO sets:
Aside from size variations, most starship versions have similar designs and features. The Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 is nearing its exit date, as the model should go out of production at the end of 2022.
See also: The best LEGO Advent Calendars
Packaging and Building Instructions
- Number of bags: 58
- Building instruction booklets: 1
Like most LEGO sets from the Ultimate Collector Series, the Imperial Star Destroyer arrives in a big, nicely designed box. The central section of its front hints at the set’s contents because it depicts Dart Wader’s starship in pursuit of Tantive IV flying over Tatooine.
Star Wars, LEGO, and USC branding are located above the starship, while the model’s title, ID number, and recommended age group are at the bottom section of the box.
The ship’s schematics, a view of the assembled replica with the display plaque, and pictures of the Devastator’s key features are also included on the outer packaging.
Top tip: Choose a building surface that is big enough for the ISD Devastator replica and multiple bags of pieces.
The pieces are divided into four boxes and packaged into 58 bags. Unlike other high piece count USC Star Wars sets, the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 has just one building instructions booklet with nearly 500 pages.
The booklet starts with fun facts about the Devastator starship and interviews with LEGO Star Wars creative director Jens Kronvold Frederiksen and Senior Designer Henrik Andersen.
An Overview of the Set’s Pieces and Minifigures
Only 52 bags are numbered 1 through 19, while six unnumbered bags are scattered randomly over the set’s four inner boxes. Hence, figuring out which parts from unnumbered bags you need to complete different build stages can be time-consuming.
This Star Wars set doesn’t contain unique pieces, aside from the 2x5x1 windscreen element and the BB-8’s dome without printed decorations. Also, most part types are featured more than once in the set, indicating a repetitive build.
The set’s color pattern is predominantly white and grey, even though several brown, blue, yellow, and red pieces are included.
This build-to-display set has two Minifigures, an Imperial Crewmember and the Imperial Officer.
- The Imperial Officer Minifigure has a uniquely decorated torso with Lieutenant rank insignia near the right shoulder. The Minifigure also has printed decorations on its back, while the arms and dual—molded legs don’t have printed elements.
- The light gray Imperial Crewmember Minifigure has a unique torso with printed decorations and the Imperial Army insignia on the right arm.
See also: The best LEGO Star Wars Minifigures
I suggest sorting out the bags based on their numbers before you start building the Devastator replica. Doing so will help you remove all the pieces you don’t need for a specific step from the building surface.
The construction starts with assembling the stand incorporated into the starship’s frame. During the initial stage of the build, you’ll have to construct the model’s core composed of Technic panels and beams.
Rhomboid stern structure and support for the ship’s exterior and front section are added after the central core is completed. The entire frame is made of Technic parts, and you’ll have to complete 129 steps before you start using System LEGO bricks.
Top tip: Divide the build into smaller sessions that last a few hours to lower the risk of making mistakes.
Constructing the ship’s upper and lower surfaces is monotonous. This part of the build has around 500 steps, and it involves assembling the docking bay, turbo-laser, engine, and reactor dome sections. The triangular bridge tower section and the super-structure around it are assembled towards the end of the build.
The bridge has a Technic core covered with gray plates, and it is held in place by a surrounding structure that features inverted antennas and similar decorative elements.
The pieces you’ll need to build the miniature Tantive IV model and attach it to the Devastator starship are included in the bags numbered 19. Connecting the Rebel ship to the Imperial Star Destroyer is easy, but detaching it can be difficult.
Applying the display plaque sticker that contains information about the starship requires complete focus since you won’t have much room for mistakes.
A Look at the Completed Model
The wedge-shaped Devastator replica is 43 inches long, 22 inches wide, and 17 inches tall, which means that you will need quite a bit of space to display it in your home or office.
The replica weighs nearly 30lbs, so moving isn’t easy. Although the model’s construction is sturdy, some elements come off easily, affecting its portability.
A closer inspection reveals an astonishing detail that includes turbo-laser batteries, cannon turrets, quad-lasers, or tractor beam targeting array. The ship’s back section features seven engines composed of visually compelling cone pieces.
This set recreates the Devastator ship as seen at the beginning of Episode IV, so its interior isn’t a part of the design.
The model has two panels with low-friction connections that enable you to reach the model’s frame and carry it from one display location to another. However, placing Minifigures inside the starship or viewing the bridge’s interior isn’t an option.
See also: Best LEGO Star Wars Helmets
The Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 is a purely build-to-display set that has just two Minifigures and two blaster pistol accessories you can use to develop play scenarios. Its entertainment value lies in the complex assembly process, but the build is repetitive due to a large number of identical parts.
Price and Value
Only two active LEGO Star Wars sets cost more than the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 model. Despite having 2,000 pieces fewer than Millennium Falcon 75192 and AT-AT 75313 building kits, this set costs just $100 less than these USC sets.
Moreover, this Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 has a ‘Hard to Find’ label on the LEGO website, suggesting that this model might not be available in local LEGO stores. The model’s current price is around $700, but some online retailers offer it at higher prices.
The same label could also indicate the set’s approaching exit date since LEGO should retire this model by the end of this year. Hence, it wouldn’t be surprising if its value increases to $900 a few months after the exit date and over $1,000 a few years later.
Both Minifigures are currently worth more than $60, and their value is expected to rise above the $100 mark in the future.
See also: LEGO Clone Trooper review
Pros and Cons of the LEGO Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Set
- A beautifully designed building instructions booklet
- An accurate replica of the Darth Vader’s Devastator starship
- This set has two unique Minifigures
- A high level of detail
- This set is collectible, and its value will continue to rise
- A long and repetitive build
- Moving the model is difficult because of its weight and size
- The ISD Devastator replica doesn’t have the interior
The Best Alternatives to the LEGO Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Set
The Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 is a unique set for LEGO fans who enjoy challenging builds. Star Wars theme doesn’t offer other models in the same price and piece count range, and you can either get a bigger and more expensive model or pick one of the smaller and more affordable options.
In addition, only a handful of active sets in this theme are based on Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope film. I’ve listed some of the best substitutes to the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 set, so here’s what they have to offer.
Republic Gunship 75309
- Piece count: 3,292
- Age group: 18+
- Price range: $$$$
The Star Wars: Clone Wars fans voted the Republic Gunship 75309 set to be included in the Ultimate Collector Series. The gunship replica is based on the Low Altitude Assault Transport vehicle the Republic forces used during the Battle of Geonosis.
Its cockpit area can hold two Minifigures, while swinging side doors and rear hatch allow access to the interior where you position more troops. The spacecraft has a spherical gun turret and two cannons located in its front section. This building kit includes Mace Windu and Clone Trooper Commander Minifigures.
Imperial Light Cruiser 75315
- Piece count: 1,336
- Age group: 10+
- Price range: $$$
LEGO Star Destroyer doesn’t offer much in terms of playability, so a set like the Imperial Light Cruiser 75309 can be an excellent substitute for it because it comes with five Minifigures and various accessories.
The Imperial Light Cruiser toy is modeled after the vehicle’s appearance in the second season of the Mandalorian TV series. The toy has a bridge that enables children to carry it, and it features a pair of adjustable turrets equipped with spring-loaded shooters.
An opening hatch reveals the cabin segment with a storage room for the accessories and a hologram table.
Millennium Falcon 75257
- Piece count: 1,351
- Age group: 9+
- Price range: $$$
The Millennium Falcon 75257 is a stripped-down and more affordable version of the largest LEGO Star Wars set. Hence, you don’t have to spend a substantial sum of money and devote a lot of time to building a replica of Han Solo’s Corellian light freighter.
The 17-inch long Millennium Falcon model has an opening two-Minifigure cockpit, spring-loaded shooters, a lowering ramp, and a pair of shooting turrets. Opening the ship’s top panels gives you access to the navigation computer with two rotating chairs, a hologame table, cargo room, and the Hyperdrive section. The set comes with Minifigures of seven Star Wars characters, including Finn, C-3PO, and Chewbacca.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Set
Question: Which Information does the Devastator’s Display Plaque Include?
Answer: Besides the ship’s name, the display plaque includes information about its manufacturer, length, engines, weapons, and Hyperdrive system.
Question: Does the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Feature a TIE Fighter?
Answer: Yes, it does. However, this miniature element contains just seven parts.
Question: Can I Buy a Lighting kit for the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 Set?
Answer: Yes, lighting kits for this model are available, but they’re not manufactured by LEGO.
Question: Are Imperial-class Star Destroyers Different from Resurgent-Class Destroyers?
Answer: Yes, they are, and the replicas featured in Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 and Star Destroyer 75190 aren’t identical.
The size and level of detail of the Imperial Star Destroyer 75252 will impress any LEGO and Star Wars fan. However, the replica’s size can also be a reason for concern since finding a place for it in your home could be problematic.
The disappointing selection of Minifigures, the steep price, and the repetitive construction process are also among the reasons why this USC Star Wars set is only a good option for LEGO builders interested in creating a replica of Darth Vader’s Devastator starship.
I don’t recommend getting this model if you’re not a die-hard fan of the original Star Wars trilogy because models like the Republic Gunship 75309 or Millennium Falcon 75257 offer a rewarding construction experience at a more affordable price.
Please browse through our guide to the best LEGO R2-D2 sets if you’d like to learn more about models from the Star Wars theme inspired by this droid.