AMT/Ertl's Star Wars Episode 1 Armored Assault Tank (AAT)
(Page One - Introduction)
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
(Originally written back in June 13, 2003)
Retail Price: $19.50
Number of Parts: 62 plastic, 2 wire
Number of Decals: None
(Note: The "Data File" and "Full Description" sections found directly below were taken from the Star Wars Episode 1 Insider's Guide CD).
Design and manufacturer: Backtoid Armor Workshop
Make: AAT (Armored Assault Tank)
Length: 9.75 Meters (32 feet)
Max. Speed: 55 kph (35 mph)
Crew: 4 battle droids (commander, pilot, 2 gunners)
Armament: primary turret laser cannon; twin lateral range-finding lasers; twin lateral anti-personnel lasers; 6 energy shell projectile launchers.
"The AAT is one of the most formidable weapons in the Trade Federation army. Aside from the powerful primary and auxiliary laser cannons, the AAT can carry a variety of powerful shells, including "bunker buster" high explosives, armor-piercing shells, and standard high-energy shells. As the shells are launched from any of the AAT's six launch tubes, they are encased in plasma, increasing both speed and penetration. When the AAT depletes its payload, it must return to a landing ship or battleship. Once the tank is securely aboard a larger vessel, the lower portion of the AAT is completely removed and replaced with a loaded version.
In addition to a direct assault on enemy troops and structures, the AAT can also be used to carry battle droids into combat. Three handholds on either side of the tank allow for up to six battle droids to attach to the sides of the vehicle.
Because it is designed for frontal assaults, the AAT's main reactor and vital systems are installed in the rear of the craft for protection. The crew is stationed in a small cockpit, protected by layers of thick armor. As with other Trade Federation vehicles, a pilot battle droid guides the AAT after receiving orders directly from the droid control ship. Two gunners receive targeting information from the pilot. Under normal conditions, the pilot battle droid gathers visual data with a stereoscopic camera and periscope scanner. But, the droid can open a front hatch for direct visual sighting in the event the camera is damaged.
The invasion of Naboo, and the following battle marked the first true combat use of the terrifying AATs. However, the vehicles had been widely tested prior to deployment on Naboo. As a result, many AATs appeared battle-scarred long before arriving on the peaceful planet."
(Look at a glance)
When I first opened up the box of the Star Wars AAT, I was pleased to discover that this kit is quite large. The base of the tank is just under 10 inches in diameter and the turret measures just over 7 inches in length.
The detail found on the parts is good. There are a large number of miscellaneous parts that attach to the tanks surface - (specifically the turret) - that give the tank a nice "busy" look.
Sixty-one plastic parts molded in medium gray make up the tank. There is also a plastic circular base and two small wires, used for antennas found at the rear of the tank.
Construction of the tank is broken down into three main sub-assemblies, along with a number of minor sub-assemblies. Most of the assemblies are composed of either left and right or top and bottom halves.
A 13-piece rotating and pivoting turret is found above. This assembly includes the two metal wires.
Found directly below is the main portion of the tank, made up of a left and right half. This sub-assembly is composed of 35 plastic parts.
Found on the bottom is a half-saucer shaped platform, composed of 13 parts.
There are rivets found on the lower saucer section that appear a bit too large. All of the parts, however, look pretty good, with no flash nor sink marks located on them. Also, there are no detectable pin ejection marks.
The instruction sheet contains large-picture diagrams that make the assembly very easy to follow and understand.
(Footnote: "The Star Wars Episode 1 Insider's Guide CD, by Lucas Arts," LucsArts Entertainment Company LLC, 1999).
Copyright © 2012 by Anthony I. Wootson Sr. No material may be reproduced without permission. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited.