What We Just Learned About 'The Force Awakens' New Stormtroopers

·Editor-in-Chief, Yahoo Entertainment

When it comes to The Force Awakens, Disney and Lucasfilm have been on lockdown, carefully releasing dribs and drabs of information on a particular timetable to avoid spoiling the hugely anticipated Star Wars sequel. But even their carefully choreographed plans aren’t perfect.

Ahead of next week’s Comic-Con International in San Diego, Hasbro has released an advance look at one of its exclusive action figures available at the fan fest: a 6-inch First Order Stormtrooper.

Photos: A Tantalizing Preview of ‘The Force Awakens Costumes’

Along with a booklet tracing the evolution of iconic armored soldiers from their origins as Clone Troopers in the prequel films, the packaging also includes a blurb with a small clue to the plot of The Force Awakens: Namely, how the Imperial Stormtroopers of George Lucas’s original trilogy became the First Order.

…As these former protectors of galactic peace mercilessly crushed resistance across the galaxy, their white armor came to symbolize opression and the indomitable power of the Emperor’s will. Yet the tyranny of Imperial rule sparked rebellion, and the Stormtrooper legions were scattered in the aftermath of the Emperor’s fall. Now the rise of the First Order ushers in the next chapter in the Stormtrooper’s legacy as a new era of ruthless brutality begins.

This dovetails with the game description of the forthcoming Star Wars Uprising, a canonical game set between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. Its trailer reveals how Imperial leaders sought to retain control through deceit and intimidation after the deaths of the Emperor and Darth Vader.

Based on costumes previewed earlier this year at the Star Wars Celebration. we know there will be several variations of First Order troopers, including pilots, Flametroopers, and Snowtroopers.

A close examination of the second teaser trailer by the fan site YakFace, suggests the First Order will be well-stocked with Heavy Toopers, Shield Troopers, Navy Troopers, and Stormtrooper Commanders.

Overseeing the legion is Captain Phasma (Gwendoline Christie), a fierce fighter who wears gleaming chrome armor.

With Star Wars panels stretching across the July 10 schedule of Comic-Con, we’re certain more details — and perhaps new footage — of The Force Awakens are only days away.

And in case you want that action figure? It will be available with the special packaging at Comic-Con and via HasbroToyShop.com for $26, or via eBay for much, much more.

Whet your appetite by re-watching 'The Force Awakens’ trailer: