LEGO Star Wars 75347 TIE Bomber – a blast from the past [Review]

Today we take a look at one of the least-covered Original Trilogy vehicles left: the TIE/sa bomber! LEGO Star Wars fans have been anticipating the reappearance of this ship after its sole minifigure-scale version from twenty years ago. 75347 TIE Bomber nearly triples the piece count of the 2003 version and changes up the minifigures, introducing the very first LEGO version of Rae Sloane, a popular and important character who bridges the Original Trilogy all the way to the sequel movies and the First Order. The set comes with 625 pieces and 4 minifigures and will be available Jan 1st for US $64.99 | CAN $84.99 | UK £59.99. Is this new version on target? Let’s dive (bomb) in!

The LEGO Group provided The Brothers Brick with an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

The packaging and instructions

This is the only one of the three 2023 Star Wars sets announced so far to feature branding for the 40th anniversary of Return of the Jedi –  appropriately so since it’s the only one of the three with a direct appearance in that movie (though Boba Fett’s comes close with only mismatch in is his outfit). That does make the box art choice puzzling, though. The backdrop is quite clearly the scene from The Empire Strikes Back when Han is trying to hide the Millennium Falcon on an asteroid (the Lemur googled “tie bomber empire strikes back” to check this and the first result is a clip with almost the exact still used on the box).

The back of the box, as usual, shows off some of the play functions and gives an in-action view of the minifigures.

Inside are four numbered bags and a modest instruction manual.

Having a minifigure “progress bar” across the bottom of the instructions is not new, but somehow LEGO Vader sauntering happily through the instructions really cracked up your reviewer, so we had to include this shot with minifigure Vader attempting to mimic the carefree, I’m-a-gonna-get-where-I’m-going-but-sing-to-the-flowers-while-doing-it jaunt of progress-bar Vader. Not a bad vibe to take into your day, whether or not you’re a Sith Lord.

The Build

LEGO sets with small accessory builds, like the loading cart in this set, often start with the small build first – perhaps so younger builders get something to play with right away – but this one goes right into the bomber and leaves the accessory for last. We do get two minifigures in bag 1, and then it’s on to the frame. The TIE bomber has dual hulls, one for the pilot and one for ordnance. This helps keep the build interesting, and it’s nice to not just be building the same hull twice. The other thing that stands out at this stage is the number of brackets and bricks with studs on the side – clearly we’ll be using a good bit of SNOT for finishing pieces.

Bag two delivers on the promise of those outward studs, adding smooth curved sides to both hulls, along with the thrusters on the rear of each hull. Two of the new half-circle jumper plates are used for each thruster, and while the same construction would work with a 2×2 circular jumper, this method makes sure the thrusters will stay parallel to each other and level; it also provides two stud connections rather than just one, a consideration for younger builders.

At this point things do get pretty tight in between the hulls; the Lemur didn’t have any trouble but builders with larger hands or fingers will have to do a bit of squeezing and fiddling to get the final set of slopes pressed on tightly. There are also some subtle greebles here that are similar to those used on more custom creations, including a roller skate on the front. Finally the TIE’s two laser cannons are included, using the 1×1 circle tile shooters which do a good job of blending in to the model while still adding a play feature. The included tiles are even the correct green color for Star Wars color-coded laser battles.

Bag three finishes the front of each hull pod and adds the center panel of each wing. The pilot’s compartment opens with a well disguised hinge but also plenty wide enough even for larger-fingered access, and the bomb compartment’s front looks very accurate with a custom-printed dish and four corner baby bow slopes forming the missile port. When finished, both pod fronts could really be right out of Wookiepedia.

Bag four finishes the wings and adds the little loading cart with some extra bombs. The wings make good use of the 2×2 triangular tiles to give the solar panels a clean look. Like most official sets, there are compromises for piece count and stability in how smooth the overall wings are and how the back side of the solar panels look. The outside looks good, though maybe another layer of light gray tiles could have been added to clean things up even more; the inside is rough, but not too messy and the color blocking works fine to suggest the black of the solar array.

One other odd note – the instructions show Vice Admiral Sloane driving the loading cart in the finished model. This isn’t repeated on the box art, but it’s hard to imagine the future Grand Admiral of the First Order driving a bomb loading cart as a Vice Admiral – even back before the Battle of Endor when she was a Captain!

The Minifigures

First up is a very nice Darth Vader minifigure. The torso includes arm printing, the legs are printed, and the helmet is the two-piece mold that was introduced a few years back. All of those look like they match existing elements, but the head does seem to be a new print – Vader’s eyebrows are angled upwards, and the scar on the back of his head is less pronounced than in other variants with a white head.

The other two humanoids are Vice Admiral Rae Sloane and a TIE pilot. Vice Admiral Sloane is a relatively simple figure, but the torso is unique as far as we can tell, and has the correct rank insignia for a Vice Admiral of five red squares over five blue. Her hair piece is okay, but in source material she often has long curly hair behind her imperial officer’s cap. A dual molded hat with her hair would have been amazing; longer natural hair would have been better as well. The TIE pilot has a very detailed helmet that we don’t think is updated, but the torso and legs have been updated compared to the last one that only appeared in 2021. A subtle line has been added to detail the pilot’s air hoses, and the back printing is more intricate as well.

Gonk! Everyone’s favorite walking garbage can rounds out the set of figures, this time utilizing a printed 2×2 crate to add Imperial insignia on the sides and some Aurebesh writing on the back. The rounded plates with bar handle have been used in other renditions but make excellent feet on this adorable droid.


This is a well-executed, very swooshable rendition of one of the only Original Trilogy craft that does not already have several, or many, different sets available. Add in four minifigures all with unique elements, and a piece count that puts it juuust over the 10 cents/piece benchmark at the US price of $65, and there aren’t any real marks against this set. We could ask for another unique character, but it’s hard to think of who would be more appropriate, and we wouldn’t want to switch out Rae Sloane. We could wish for a $50 price point, but that would be a bargain even pre-inflation. The fronts of the twin pods, along with the targeting sensor, make this as screen-accurate as you’d hope for an official set. If you have a TIE bomber shaped hole in your heart or your LEGO collection, go for this one – it’s a direct hit.

75347 TIE Bomber includes 625 pieces and 4 minifigures, and will be available Jan. 1 from the LEGO Shop for US $64.99 | CAN $84.99 | UK £59.99.

It may also be available from third-party sellers on Amazon and eBay.

The LEGO Group provided The Brothers Brick with an early copy of this set for review. Providing TBB with products for review guarantees neither coverage nor positive reviews.

3 comments on “LEGO Star Wars 75347 TIE Bomber – a blast from the past [Review]

  1. Afolio

    Great model and review. Good to have the TIE-Bomber back since its last appearance in 2004. That´s 18! years by now.
    However the canopy or the windscreen must be a bad joke.
    Did i got that right? There is a 6 wide round plate on a bracket with the macaroni slopes and the 4-dish which used to be windscreen is put on the plate with a round brick or so? WTF?

    As i remember, this must be the first time the pilots working place is blocked so shamefully. That would be at least one point less in a personal review.

    While i saw the pics, i wondered how did they attach the windscreen dish to make it nice..? Boy was i wrong.

    So as we are slowly getting used to, this product needs MOCing or tweaking of the buyers at home.
    At least we get a nice shape to work with.

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