Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Less of an update and more of an apology. It's been two, two months since I last posted something...and I said that I'd post a design journal type post. And hence, I apologize. I don't have one to post yet, and I have so very little free time...which either gets devoted to building or game development (or game playing >.>).

So, this blog will probably go dark for a while. I'll try to do something neat every once-in-a-while...and I'll try to make that more often than two months at a time, but I can't make any promises.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

I'm Baaack....

...not that I really ever left. I have kinda let this blog fall to the wayside however. So, as a heads up, I will be putting up a rather lengthy dissertation on my entire thought process when building a frame. Not tonight, but soon.

Monday, April 1, 2013

This post is also not about lego...but...

So, I'm splitting off my game development and gaming posts over to Black Unicorn Games. Take a look and follow along if you like!

And, to further clarify, that means this blog will be dedicated to Lego, Mechs, and Mobile Frame Zero from now on >.>

Monday, March 25, 2013

This Post Is Not About Lego

So, I'm finally getting off my butt and working on a game. Side note: Yes, the LDraw renderer is still in the works, but it's been beating me down lately, so it's going on a further back burner for a while.

Some info: it will be using Boxmen as the characters...for which I now have some good base meshes. (Stay tuned for more on Boxmen in a later post). The title of the game? "Boxmen: A Low-Poly Adventure." Genre? JRPG. The fact that I'm actually excited about it, and want to work on it after work means that I'll actually finish this project...even if it takes the next X months (X being any number larger than 3 >.>).

So that's all for now, back to texturing the lead character!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Of Simpler Times and Giant Robots

So, a new thread over at the hangar has proved rather interesting. User darksyntax has taken the C6 system and recreated two of the iconic MF0 frames, the Chub and Commisar. Seriously check it out!

I'll go on a bit to say that this thread, and the C6 system in general, is of particular interest to me as I have effectively forsworn all video game and Lego purchases for the rest of the year (Gasp!). Combine that with the fact that I've decided that my two latest XVM-17 frames are staying put together, and you get me looking for ways to build more with less. (Seriously, the XVM-17's are massively clip intensive.)

Here's the gallery for the C6 system. I'd show some images, but Micah's photos are not set up to let me do that.

So, for some eyecandy >.>

Friday, March 1, 2013

A Placeholder

As I have a proposal to be submitted Monday, I really don't have a whole lot to say today. Hopefully I'll come up with something useful this weekend ;)

That being said, I'm feeling a bit depressed as I realize that I probably won't be able to purchase a PS4 (due to life, and not being able to get health insurance through work), and with my lack of an XBox Live Gold subscription, I probably won't be able to play Bungie's Destiny when it comes out :( (As it's coming out on XBox 360, PS3, and PS4 at least)

Friday, February 22, 2013

Skinned Alive!

WARNING: Long post ahead! Also, take everything I say with a grain of salt...preferably sugar cube-sized >.>

What I'd like to take a look at in this post is the idea of having a standard core for frame designs. In particular, I'm going to take a look at Malcolm's MgN-3xx, Zizy's lates VM series, Soren's iconic Chub and my own (I'd be remiss if I didn't) XVM-17's. This isn't meant to be an in-depth look at the frames themselves, it's more to illustrate the point being made.

So, I will make the point first and show the frames after, as it makes a wee bit more sense to me to do it that way. And by no means do I claim to be an expert, I'll leave that to the actual experts ;)

So what do I have to say about core frame designs? Well, for starters, by "core" I mean a build that can be easily re-skinned while still being recognizable as the "core" frame. And this, is the benefit of using a core design.

As you can see from the frames below, each one looks rather different from the others. But, frames within the same core framework have a similar look that creates an overall cohesive feel. Take the two MgNs for example, while completely different in appearance you know by looking at them that they belong in the same family.

Using a core frame as a base has a few other benefits as well. For starters, it frees you up to mess around with the fiddly bits, and to see how different pieces can change a silhouette. It's also kinda relaxing to just slap a core frame together and start skinning it. And yet another benefit is that it gives you a pet project to continually improve on...while maintaining a similar feel over different generations. Finally, there's the feeling you get when you realize "this is it, this is my core".

I know that may not be entirely helpful, but the idea of a core frame is something that's kinda stuck with me and been a guiding principle of late.

MgN-311 by Malcolm Craig
MgN-333 by Malcolm Craig
So here I'm looking at Malcolm's MgN-3xx series of frames. An impressive frame design of which there have been many, many renditions. The core is defined as a rotated travis brick with 4 taps coming out of it. The design lends itself to all sorts of wonderful variations.

Zizy VM Frame
Zizy VM Frame
Zizy's current VM series of frames characterize a stockier, Wanzer-ish style and are quite imposing. The core of Zizy's builds are largely characterized as being composed of relatively easy to find bricks used to impressive effect.

ST-09A Rumble Monkey by Soren
Chub Flamethrower by Soren
Ah, the iconic Chub. Poster boy of MF0, the chub has seen many, many, many renditions by just as many builders. It's a wonderful frame with tons of character. The core of this frame, in my opinion, is the torso. It's kinda the defining feature of a chub.

[XVM-17] Stalm by yours truly
[XVM-17] Chimar by yours truly
Ok, so I'm tooting my own horn a bit. But the XVM-17 frame was directly inspired by Zizy's VM series. The core torso area is very similar, but rest tends to be rather different, with the legs being the same core build across all XVM-17's.