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2153-1: Robo Stalker
Published 1 year ago
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The build is ~97% correct; I had to include a MOC-assembly in place of a 12x9x2⅓ Bi-Level Wing Plate in the robot's head, which caused a bit of rebricking around it. (All non-original parts are grouped together). Other substitutions aren't that noticeable.

All "Robo" graphics are missing, so I chose somewhat similar-looking flat tiles and sloping bricks. Minifigs are also completely substituted, unfortunately.

1. https://rebrickable.com/parts/30037/wing-plate-bi-level-12-x-9-exploriens/
2. https://rebrickable.com/parts/6069/wedge-sloped-4-x-4-triple-no-stud-notches/
3. https://rebrickable.com/parts/3870/plate-special-2-x-2-thin-with-dual-wheels-holder-solid-pins/
4. https://rebrickable.com/parts/6230/tyre-smooth-small-with-white-hollow-fixed-center-space-shuttle-wheel/
5. https://rebrickable.com/parts/30038/minifig-helmet-underwater-with-hose/

1. https://rebrickable.com/parts/3298pr0034/slope-33-3-x-2-with-roboforce-gold-robo-and-blue-and-yellow-circuitry-print/
2. https://rebrickable.com/parts/3069bpr0104/tile-1-x-2-with-robo-gold-yellow-red-print/
3. https://rebrickable.com/parts/2431pr0046/tile-1-x-4-with-gold-red-and-blue-circuitry-print/
4. https://rebrickable.com/parts/6069pb02/wedge-sloped-4-x-4-triple-no-stud-notches-with-metallic-roboforce-print/
5. https://rebrickable.com/parts/973c17h22pr0076/torso-gold-circuitry-and-robo-print/
6. https://rebrickable.com/parts/970x021pr9999/legs-and-red-hips-with-space-roboforce-gold-circuitry/
7. https://rebrickable.com/parts/3626bpr0285/minifig-head-headband-red-and-freckles/
8. https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?P=2153stk01& (sticker sheet)

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This set no. 2153 'Robo Stalker' came out in 1997 as part of Space's short-lived "Roboforce" subtheme, exclusive to North America.

Lego also debuted new Space villains that same year, "UFO"—the first subtheme ever to feature aliens. They piloted very distinctively, aggressively-looking flying saucers (built from custom curved molds, and even with Fiber-Optic electric lights in the headliner set). As "UFO" launched internationally, that created quite a predicament in the UK and Continental Europe, tipping the overall balance of galactic forces towards evil like never before!

In European catalogs, "UFO" was portrayed against "Exploriens," a civilian '96 faction not really equipped to battle against menacing aliens. In the British edition, the "Exploriens" lineup didn't appear at all, only evil UFOs! To be precise, the 'Explorien Starship' did appear—as a background illustration, though, blown up to pieces in the UFO's visor. So, humans were pretty much screwed...

In 1998, Lego added yet another galactic villains, "Insectoids," only making matters worse for humanity—that season, both the UK and International brochures portrayed purely evil Space, divided between several alien races.

Meanwhile, only in North America, LEGO Space had a proper exposition in 1997, featuring "Roboforce" as good guys keeping "UFO" villains in check, while civilian "Exploriens" kept collecting their fossils uninterrupted. Next year, "Roboforce" fought against two enemies, "UFO" and "Insectoids."

Despite a striking and memorable look, the "Roboforce" subtheme didn't introduce any exclusive parts except decals and minifig torsos. All four massive robots were constructed from standard LEGO System bricks, plus a few custom elements from "Exploriens" and other Space themes.

The "Roboforce" battle against "UFO" and "Insectoids" marked the end of an iconic "divided" LEGO System Space—a period from '87 till 1999 that followed Classic Space and featured such dearly-beloved factions as Blacktron, Ice Planet, or Spyrius (with a pretty hardcore cult following even decades later).

In 1999, a legendary "Star Wars" series began, which still remains one of The Lego Company's highest priorities regarding galactic sci-fi. Since then, Space became a single-faction series, with "heroes" and "villains" in the same lineup: "Life on Mars" (2001), followed by "Mars Mission" in 2007-08, a third "Space Police" reboot ('09-10), "Alien Conquest" in 2011, and finally, the last collection so far—"Galaxy Squad" in 2013. Seven years later, Lego Space is still hibernating.

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Clocking at 280 pieces and two minifigs, the 'Robo Stalker' was the second-largest "Roboforce" set and the biggest of two Orange Class humanoid robots.

The robot doesn't walk and can't move its feet, rolling on wheels instead. The primary cockpit in the robot's belly is accessible through a hatch in the back. Both arms have four degrees of freedom, with an electric chainsaw on the left and a triple-fingered claw manipulator on the right.

Robo Stalker has a modular design, with a detachable head unit (with a second's pilot cabin) functioning as a tiny spacecraft. It's mounted on a 360° rotating stand and easily snaps off. After unfolding two wings, the small spaceship can take off, powered by a rocket engine in the rear.

There's a pair of 2x2 safes/containers in the Robo Stalker's head (with transparent neon-orange doors matching other windshields and lights). These function as battery sockets, basically, and hold replaceable "Roboforce" power sources—1x2 flat tiles with a custom decal. Lego called them "robo disks," despite the rectangular shape, maybe implying they were in protective cartridges, akin floppy diskettes or MiniDiscs? Smh.

The 'Robo Stalker' included two identical minifigs—a fancier version of Roboforce Astronaut with printed legs. Besides a brand-new torso, decorated with intricate gold-and-red circuitry patterns and a "ROBO" logo, Roboforce troopers shared the same head with "Aquanauts" divers (stubbles and a red headband). They wore transparent neon-orange helmets with a breathing hose—Lego part #30038, introduced for the "Exploriens" (but later used in many series, including "Rock Raiders," "Racers," and even some "Town" sets).

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Source: https://images.brickset.com/library/view/?f=catalogues/c97sahSpring&p=5

The Robo Stalker is here to protect the planet—and you're at the controls! Flexible arms have a drill for boring through solid rock and a grabber claw for snatching aliens—like the Time Twisters—on the run. Open the secret robo disk compartments under its ears and add extra robo disks to super-charge this Stalker for special missions. This robot makes robo-skating look easy—four sets of wheels let it roll across any planet. And when you need to take to the skies—pop off its head and cruise!

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* Note the extremely odd mention of "Time Twisters" as possible aliens for Robo Stalker to snatch. This quirky "cameo" was exclusive to the Spring edition of the '97 Shop-At-Home catalog. For some inexplicable reason, the "Roboforce" centerfold in it only featured three models (out of four, so they all could easily fit on two pages).

The Robo Stalker got pushed over to the next two pages, with identical "dark, icy planet" background and a "Space" theme logo in the corner. This "collection" featured a few Exploriens, the 'Robo Stalker,' and, SUDDENLY, a 'Whirling Time Warper'—one of the "Time Twisters" machines! (Hence that out-of-place remark in the Stalker's caption.) Not impossible, as Time Twisters traveled freely across any themes, including "Space," but Commander Schmidt was no alien even by the wildest stretch of imagination.

In the following Summer and Holiday Shop-At-Home issues, all four "Roboforce" sets appeared together, standing right next to "Exploriens." (Lego copywriters also revised the Robo Stalker's description to simply read "...snatching aliens on the run" now.)

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2154: Robo Master (1997)
by @criker

6938: Exploriens >> Scorpion Detector ('96)

6919: Insectoids >> Planetary Prowler ('98)
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