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The Shadow Guard was released single carded in 2008's The Anniversary Collection. The Shadow Guard is featured in The Force Unleashed video game.
For this figure- Hasbro re-used and re-painted the previously released Emperor's Royal Guard action figure from the ROTS toy line from 2005. This time though- Hasbro gave the figure a different cloak and included a force pike as seen in the video game. The cloak isn't as bulky anymore as on the previously released Royal Guard- but it's so thin that when the light shines on it- you can see through parts of it. The small blaster fits into the right hand better than the left- but it's not a perfect fit for either hand. However- there is a hidden holster underneath the cloak on the right side of the belt where the blaster can be stowed away. The force pike is a decent fit- and due to its length you probably want to have the Shadow Guard hold it with both hands. The blade stays firmly attached and won't fall off. Where this figure lacks is in articulation. 11 joints isn't bad- but the swivel joints in the elbows are very loose- and the arms might just come off when you move them back and forth. This is quite annoying- especially when you are trying to pose the figure in a fighting stance. The helmet is not removable- and you can't turn it left or right due to its length.
The paint application on the Shadow Guard is nothing spectacular since the armor and cape is all black- and there is no weathering anywhere. When we reviewed the Emperor's Royal Guard about half a year ago- we wrote that the figure felt outdated- and the same holds true for this figure. All things considered- it's just an OK figure with joint issues- and if you compare the pictures with the character's appearance in the game- it's up for debate how accurately looking this version of the Shadow Guard really is.
Each one of these elite guards is specially chosen by Palpatine for his exceptional loyalty to the Emperor- and for his ability to use the Force. Each carries a pike that can be ignited to use as a lightsaber-like blade.