Whether you consider Chopper an adorable Star Wars droid or a war criminal, the rambunctious robot is among the several Star Wars Rebels characters that have leaped from animation to live action. Tying in with this month’s Ahsoka series on Disney Plus, Hasbro’s Chatter Back Chopper animatronic brings an always-listening spin to the droid, which after its reveal back in April is now on sale in the US for $80 and in the UK for £83 (roughly AU$160).
I got to try out an early sample of the 7.5-inch droid, which wouldn’t stop talking the minute I loaded it with four AA batteries. The Chatter Back Chopper is reminiscent of a Furby, in that once it’s powered on it’ll react right away when you speak to it or touch it, or when it hears ambient noise.
Chopper has 40 different sound and movement combinations, which involve the two “arms” sticking out of its head, Chopper’s wheel, and a speaker that spouts out a mix of cranky noises that are true to the character.
Moving another arm that’s halfway down Chopper and pressing a button on the front of the droid will activate these combinations. And you can turn off Chopper by pressing and holding that button — at which time he’ll make a disappointed-sounding noise in reaction to the session ending.
The Furby comparison also aligns with how much Chopper moves around — despite having a wheel, he doesn’t move on his own but does animately twist and bop in reaction to noise. Chopper also doesn’t directly recognize voices, so its reactions based on what it hears are generally random, apart from the aforementioned sound he makes when being turned off.
For a more direct look at how Chatter Back Chopper looks, moves and sounds, check out my hands-on video, embedded in this story.