A few weeks ago I picked up this Mega Bloks Police Cruiser Standoff set (#97452, 224 pieces). This is a medium-sized box set consisting of a patrol car and a couple minifigures.
The patrol car has NMPD (New Mombassa Police Department) markings, which means this set was inspired by the Halo 3: ODST videogame released a few years ago. As most will remember, New Mombassa was the Earth city that is invaded by the Covenant in Halo 2 although we don’t get to see much of it (or its police force) until the Halo 3: ODST spin-off game.
The patrol car looks sleek and has a good size to it. The smoke colored canopy opens to reveal the interior of the vehicle, occupied by a driver’s seat and a small weapons rack. The set includes a second seat piece, should you want to remove the rack and have a passenger along and even though the booklet does not include specific instructions to do so, it is not hard to figure it out.
The NMPD Officer included uses the new body type, with disk and hinge joints and modular armor design. The NMPD guy’s legs are rather plain, and clearly not designed to hold thigh armor as the Spartan minifigures, but seem to be compatible with the leg gear from the Call of Duty line.
The weapons included for the NMPD Officer are an assault rifle, a shotgun and a pistol. As mentioned both long weapons can be held on a rack inside the vehicle, but the Officer has to hold onto his pistol or have it rattling inside the car.
The other figure included is a Brute Chieftain, decorated as if seen through a VISR module. The Chieftain used the old articulation design, but the details are sharp and the figure looks imposing with the paintjob and the dreaded Gravity Hammer accessory.
I found the building process for this set to be quite satisfying because it incorporates some interesting techniques using pretty standard pieces as well as a few unique construction elements. The finished model is sturdy and rolls very nicely on its solid rubber wheels.
There is very little paint going on in this set, other than the minifigures. The car chassis pieces are molded in a light gray plastic with color swirls mixed in and a few solid color plates for extra detail.
The only part I did not care much for was the use of decals for the police car markings, but the piece would have looked unfinished without them. Thankfully, these are easy to align and none goes over more than one piece at a time.
Word of advice: Since Mega Bloks likes to use swirls of color in their plastic pieces, be wary of what piece goes where in relation to the decals, as some of them will look better if you place them over the more uniformly-colored surfaces.
Overall, this was a fun set to build and the two minifigures included are interesting enough to justify the purchase.