Monday, 28 March 2016

AAB Report: Death Star now at the LEGOLAND Windor Resort

The Star Wars Miniland Experience has been at the LEGOLAND Windsor Resort since 2012, recreating scenes from the Episodes I to VI and The Clone Wars. A New Hope is represented by a wonderful Mos Eisley setting, forming the basis for a huge Millennium Falcon model. But another iconic location from that movie was notable by its absence – and has now joined the exhibit. It’s time for the Death Star.

The running order for the Star Wars Miniland Experience opens with the Battle of Christophsis from The Clone Wars, followed by the Battle of Theed from The Phantom Menace. The Battle of Geonosis from Attack of the Clones is re-created, before moving to the end of the war for the Battle of Kashyyk. The Revenge of the Sith area features a second scene too, showing Anakin and Obi-Wan’s duel on Mustafar.

The classic trilogy begins with classic locations from Tatooine, including the Cantina, Obi-Wan’s home and of course Docking Bay 94. The Empire Strikes Back is covered by an incredible Hoth diorama including a crashed AT-AT, before the Return of the Jedi area features the Forest Moon of Endor. What was the final section of the exhibit features huge, upscaled LEGO Star Wars minifigures built from bricks.

But now, as visitors enter the corridor that previously led to the shop, they are greeted by a fleet of Rebel Alliance ships above their heads, all flying in the same direction. A multitude of lights shines down the corridor, representing Hyperspace. And everyone knows where these ships are heading.

The final area features a mammoth, 500,000 brick Death Star. A truly impressive model, it sits at 3 metres high, superbly lit in an atmospheric space. X-wings and TIE Fighters are positioned around it (not to scale), with Vader’s TIE Fighter pursuing Luke’s X-wing around the centre of the space station. 

Scenes from inside the Death Star are depicted in the usual Miniland figure scale around the behemoth’s base, including the destruction of Alderaan, Darth Vader’s redemption and the Trash Compactor. Interactivity comes from buttons that will light up and move the models, including the Death Star itself – when the relevant button is pressed, the super weapon charges and light streams through the brick built laser.

It is hard to do anything but be mesmerised by the model that’s no moon, but the room also houses a recreation of the Trench Run. Darth Vader’s TIE Fighter is depicted chasing Luke Skywalker’s X-Wing, which is firing the blasts that will detonate the Death Star. Again, the attention to detail is marvellous and shows how well the model makers can represent a moment rather than a landscape.

It isn’t to say that what comes before it is not impressive, but the Death Star exceeds everything up until that point, serving as a very worthy finale to the Star Wars Miniland Experience. It might seem like a small addition to an existing attraction, but it really will lead to jaws dropping and fingers pointing. Any Star Wars fan visiting the LEGOLAND Windsor Resort should make sure they pay this a visit.

Click here to find our more information and book a visit to the LEGOLAND Windsor Resort.

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