Star Wars Regulator
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About BEAVeR

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    'Dark Force Bigger Wall of Text'!
  • Birthday 06/13/1995

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  1. BEAVeR

    [MOC] TIE-Lambda - new MKII version

    Subject: Review TIE-Lamba MK II Report by: BEAVeR, Imperial Regulator Report directed to: Veynom, Sienar project lead engineer Remarks: Following points of attention on the MK I have been adequately addressed on the MK II design: - More aerodynamic shape, especially at the top, to improve stability on flying in atmosphere achieved by enlargin the entrance hatch. Added benefit to facilitate access to the cockpit with larger maintenance equipment. - The exposed structural elements at the back in the MK I have been sealed under a cover to improve resistance to corrosive influences (known issue on bases located on Exogorth-infested asteroids). - Sleeker color profile to look more intimidating in propaganda. Verdict: Accept the current design for an initial batch to be tested in the field. Expect more orders afterwards. Meanwhile, it is suggested to look into the continuing weakness of the connection between the cockpit and the wing assembly. Not as a bug to be solved, but as a feature as this would be a suitable place to install an ejection mechanism. __________ Off the record, Veynom, now it looks even better! I especially love how you managed to improve the shaping of the cockpit by braking away from the mould and making it into something unique. Not only does the new version look smoother, there's also an increased organic asymmetry (not left-right, but top-bottom and front-back). That really makes look like a more evolved, refined and modern version of the classic TIE of which all variants have a perfectly spherical cockpit. And it's a great match for the more alien-like silhouette of the craft as a whole. Maybe that's something to exaggerate even more if you ever plan on fully designing a TIE model of your own imagination...
  2. BEAVeR

    The Mandalorian - Arvala

    Thank the Force for the Mandalorian, because thanks to it we get amazing builders such as you back into building Star Wars MOCs: welcome back! And what a return it is with such a nice creation! When you look at it, the particular architecture or arrangement of the source scenery is not very interesting by itself, but you manage to make it look exciting by capturing the atmosphere perfectly. The buildings all look alike, but they feature some different techniques like the different ridges everywhere, which makes it a treat to look at. Also, for me, you strike the delicate balance between gritty texturing on one hand and readability and smoothness on the other. The ground has just enough studs to make it look textured, but not too much to make it into a bland base plate. What sells it is that the studs are in clusters rather than distributed evenly. Besides the studs, the tiny gaps between the pieces (both in the ground and in the walls) give everything some more texture. I love the inclusion of the longer SNOTted plates in the base. I guess they are there purely for structural reasons because otherwise you would have gaps? Whatever the motivation, they give some extra lines that actually look a lot like lines created by the wind in the sand to me! Maybe that would even be more pronounced if you would use tiles and maybe misalign them in the vertical plane... It's surprising to me that you made the entire ground on the same level, with no areas that stick out by a plate or two as we see in all other creations, and that it works so well to evoke just the right level of roughness (not ever place has huge pits and bumps after all!). That also carries over into the area right in front of the central gate, where the white floor has slowly been covered by sand. No enormous dunes, but just sand slowly crawling its way inside because nobody bothers to keep on sweeping. It really is a subtle kind of roughness... It's amazing how you can innovate landscape building with nothing but plates and tiles like that! Awesome job as usual, markus! Look at me geeking out at how you built the sand The only comment I have is that the action with the minifigs does not look every intense or dynamic to me. Of course there are limitations to what you can do with minifigs, but to me all the fallen minifigs just looks as if they are taking a nap... Maybe here you could use some small plates, tiles and slope to create some heaps of sand next to them as if they fell very violently or something like that. And maybe here and there a minifig ducking for cover, or in a more pronounced sprint pose, instead of casually walking closer by... That could maybe fill this fantastic scene of yours with even more excitement!
  3. Wow, you really surprised me with this creation! At first sight I thought this was just an impression of that famous scene to have a nice backdrop for the landspeeder. But then I took a look at the actual scene in the movie for comparison, and I must say I was not expecting things to line up so well! That moisture evaporator is in exactly the right spot, and in the movie is placed behind a buttress as well. And in the exact shot where the trooper says "these are not the droids we're looking for", you see a man walking towards the camera that looks quite a bit like that figure with the brown vest and light shirt in your build. I never knew there were details to notice in that scene, but you've managed to squeeze everything out of it to make your creation as precise as possible, and that's amazing! The only comment I would have is that I'm pretty sure that in one shot I spotted four troopers on the right side of the landspeeder Regardless of how incredibly accurate your scene is, I also like the way it is built. You manage to make big pieces go a long way! I really like the texture on the ground. Even though you used some bigger plates in there, it still looks very random and natural with the restrained use of tiles and dark tan patches. There are some larger briks in the buildings, especially the various domes, dishes and curved panels. Those large smooth pieces would look out of place on a building that's highly textured everywhere, but you did not fall into that trap and kept them pretty smooth with more decorative, regular textures rather than things indicating decay. That way, the shape takes priority so you can get those nice rounded lines as seen in the movie. And the difference in texture between the buidlings and the ground makes the scene very clearly readable as well: they don't fuse together visually. Speaking of textures, while those 1x2 bricks with one groove give a nice texture to the doors, there is a small thing that bothers me about their arrangement. Since you offset each row of themby one stud, the gaps between the pieces make them look more like bricks than like metallic panels to me. Maybe just stacking them in straight columns would break that illusion. And another illusion that would be nice to see is to see the landspeeder floating. Now it seems to rest on the studs instead of really hovering, which could be easily achieved with some transparent bricks. Those would be some very minor finishing touches to maybe elevate this creation a bit more. In any case, it's fantastic already, with its nice composition, faithfulness to the movie, wise use pieces and plenty of other things I've not mentioned yet, such as the wonky way one of the stickers on those brown tiles with clips was put on, to show that that window has seen better days. Good stuff all around! PS: one last thing: please resize your images to be conform the Eurobricks guidelines, which can be found in the link in my signature.
  4. BEAVeR

    Sorgan Village

    What a sweet little build that captures the essence of the village on Sorgan on a tight footprint! That hut just looks cute the way you built it with that nice bulging shape and pillars in front of the door that will require the minifig to really squeeze through . The flow is a bit lost in the roof with the different edges rather than the smoothly tapering cone. I've experienced myself how tricky it is to build nice tapering points in reddish brown though... I can only suggest the use of a brown carrot piece to end on a stronger point and to maybe just drop that ring of 1x2 bows: I think the curve of the roof will improve more than the gap would enlarge. There are also some things I really like about your scenery. For one, that bulge around the pond looks really nice, especially with the contrasting colors you decided to use. I especially like that the level of the water on the inside is lower than that of the surrounding soil. It's a small thing, but it helps to bring some literal depth to the scene. Another depth-related detail I enjoy is that you used a headlight brick to fix the foot of the minifig rather than a regular SNOT brick. Even though it forces the figure to sit at a straight angle compared to the scene, it results in a better integration as her foot seems to ever so slightly sink into the soil. Thanks for sharing this relaxing scene that's pretty to look at and held some nice surprises for me!
  5. BEAVeR

    [MOC] HWK-290 - The Moldy Crow

    Welcome to the forum, PixelProtectors: great to see you already have a great time with showing your first MOC here. I like how you managed to build on top of another creator's MOC but managed to give it your own distinct spin, inspired by that really cool miniature model you display next to its LEGO cousin. The addition of all the textured bricks and those extra panels really gives the ship that used Star Wars look without making it too messy. Maybe now it even looks cleaner because those ridges of the 45° slope bricks on the nose don't look out of place anymore! You also did well not to go overboard with the panels and to keep them mostly to a horizontal orientation which emphasizes the lines of the ship. Maybe it would also be cool to add a tile with a 45° cutout somewhere for some extra interesting detailling that reflects some of the angles in the ship? While the panels are great, I think they would look even better if they were a bit more subtle. Now you seem to mostly have used bracket plates to fix the tile panels on. That makes them stick out by half a plate extra compared to the case where you would use bricks with studs on the sides instead of plates with brackets. If you would use headlight bricks, you could even inset the tiles by half a plate to make them look more part of the ship instead of extra parts glued on after the fact. But still, the effect is already really nice as is. As for getting the shape of the cockpit window right, I have some ideas too . Maybe the easiest way would be to attach some wedge plates in the right spots, just like you did with the panels, or to stick some tiles with a single stud connection to the side and angle them to define the right shape. So you would just be covering the corners of the transparent bricks then. Another way to do it would be to forget about using transparent bricks and just leave the window portion open. That makes it way more doable to build the shape of the hull around it with slope bricks. I hope all of that makes some sense. But whatever the case, know that I really like this debut MOC of yours! I hope many more follow and I'm already looking forward to your update on this one!
  6. BEAVeR

    [MOC] TIE-Lambda - new MKII version

    Bold statement you made on Flickr, Veynom... there are some really crazy ones out there. And if you look at it upside down, it's really not that bad to me. Regardless of anyone's opinion on the source material though, I think we can all agree that your MOC is far from the ugliest TIE ever built! The model looks very nice on its own, and you manage to improve on the original design with your own touches I really like. For one, I really like how you dealt with those shield generators. In the original design they indeed look a lot like snubbed wing pylons, but by giving them a distinct color and texture with those smooth cones, they really feel like something different in your model. This idea could even be reinforced by making the cones of the actual central pylon light grey instead of dark grey to increase the contrast and to group the colors more together to make for a clearer color scheme (bits of color strewn about tend to be less effective than larger patches for me, even in greyscale). I do really like that you used those cheese grater wedges in dark grey though: they look as a part of those shield generators that is exposed momentarily from the light grey coverings, suggesting a real integration of the components. Making the plates they sit on dark grey and maybe doing the same on the bottom with some inverted building could even reinforce this idea more. As I said, the smooth texture of those cones stands out too, in a good way, because it is contrasted by a wealth of shapes right next to the cockpit. Awesome way to spice the TLG design up with a minimum of pieces! Using curved or wedge tiles on the top in front of the hatch could make that shape more interesting as well. And then the wings: flawless execution! The technique with the 1xn bricks with tiles hinged around is classic by now, but you manage to integrate it very well. I dig that you also used the 1x2 plates with handle on the central wing base. Even though it is not really functional there, it closes a gap and more importantly makes the same pieces in the angled wings look like details meant to be there rather than a necessity we should just ignore. The use of the 1x4 bricks with groove is inspired and does something new with the wings as well! Great ideas and nice executions, but to me there are some small things that could make it look even more finished, and that is the color coordination of the Technic pieces you used. The connection looks well thought out, but those grey technic pieces in the middle of the angled wings really stick out and the nice grey lines on the center panel are disturbed by the angled connectors. Maybe you can hide the transitions underneath some panels with details? Maybe something with clicking hinges? And a smooth tile rather than the antistuds seen at the backside of the central panel would really make it look professional from all angles. Once again I ended up writing way more about your TIE-Lambda than I intended at first, but your models always make me excited to talk, with the solid building you bring to all these modestly scaled models without relying on sometimes cheap NPU tricks to make it feel unique. If TLG would make some more sets based on the EU, I'm sure you would be the perfect man for the job! Now there's my bold statement for the day
  7. BEAVeR

    [O5 - Junction - CS] Investigation in the Sand

    Sweet diorama, Josh! You've hidden some true gems in a big mess, and I mean that fully as a compliment! Maybe let's start with some less obvious details I really enjoy. That stack of two orange flower pots head to head for example, evoking perhaps some kind of gourd which is perfectly at home in such an environment. Then there's the domed roof that really just seems thrown on top of those skeletal girders with its crazy angle. Next, I give you credit for introducing me to that bottle part with ID 4429 - not a part you see every day, which therefore looks like a real treasure in such a landscape. It's a big contrast with all of those mundane objects lying around, but even there you put some nice details like the mismatching lids on some containers that show the "if it sits, it fits" mentality. And finally there's your use of those truncated cone parts introduced as the head of BB-9E. I never realised they'd blend so nicely with the tube parts and the other 2x2 truncated cone parts... They bring some nice variation to all the tubing present! But of course we have to talk about that gorgeous door you created! I love the emphasis on the grooves in the pentagonal tiles, accentuated even more by the protruding lip of the 1x2 bracket plates next to them. Maybe a grill tile in the place where now those brown studs are peaking through would add to the effect even more. It would really accentuate the grooved look of the door, which is both very Star Wars and a natural design element in a desert landscape to me. I imagine people's faces riddled with grooves because of the exposure to the elements, and what they build to reflect that feature... As I said, those gems are hidden in a big mess. In such an enviroment, it's not worthwhile to build exquisite architecture when a piece of junk does the job just fine. Anything new will be reduced to junk anyway in record time by the elements. You emphasize that feeling by using parts that sometimes look like the real junk of someone's collection. These stange plastic sheets and clunky big domes, circle sector and cement mixer parts are hard to incorporate into any detailed MOC, except maybe for a one-off gimmick, but never as a main element. They often end up as the leftovers of a collection. What an analogy for the junk that would be used in an outpost like the one you depict! I can't help but feeling that these really are the best parts those minifigs could get their hands on in their circumstances. Finally, a word about the landscaping. It's always difficult with a limited collection of parts, but you've managed not to neglect any part and give it an interesting overall shape. Especially the bows are a nice feature. Maybe they're not distributed randomly enough for my taste with many starting and ending on the same lines which looks a bit unnatural and creates a stark contrast between the studded sections and the smooth section (but again, I imagine this has a lot to do with the limitations in available parts. Maybe strategically placing minifigs and structures to hide parts in other colors is a solution?), but the overall directionality they put in the landscape it great. They create strong lines in the landscape, giving us a feel for what we can't see: the wind. Some of those wedge plates you placed also enforce that effect, but I have the feeling it would be stronger still if you'd rotate some parts 90 degrees, like the ones towards the front feet of the dewback. And maybe it would be even stronger if we some sand collecting in crevices perpendicular to the direction of the wind, and the inhabitant adapting their architecture to it (or maybe even the pylons of that domed tent tilting in the direction of the wind!). And while directionality in the natural elements is a good thing here, I feel like the artificial elements should be less aligned with each other. How to even achieve perfect alignment while building in the desert with little fixed reference points? Some randomness in the rotation of some of those tubes emerging from the sand would probably sell the haphazard look of the outpost more where you don't want to bother with alignment because you don't like being outside for too long. So maybe this is one of those cases where there should be more structure in the landscape than in the artificial elements, which you already show with the direction of the wind versus the random orientation of the dome and the curved wall. Wow, this creation ended up inspiring me way more than I had anticipated! That can only be due to the many great touches you put in. So more MOCs please, much more
  8. BEAVeR

    [MOC] Geonosis

    I remember seeing your Geonosian Fighter and thinking it looked really nice, but never would I have thought it would get such a monumental "garage"! You've managed to create an incredibly fine piece of landscaping that really captures the feel of Geonosis like few MOCs have done before for me. And that without even relying on the cliches that define the planet like the orange haze and those tall and curvy spires. You seem to really have understood what makes Geonosis Geonosis at a more subtle level and you've managed to translate it into bricks so perfectly that I expect a whiff of steam to escape from one of those holes any minute now! What jumps out to me when looking at your creation is the abundance of long, vertical lines. They are everywhere, but they are subtle enough not to overwhelm the viewer with too much contrasted details. And those vertical lines are interrupted by a myriad of even finer horizontal lines. They're a natural result of the features of the bricks you used, but they read as the perfect analog to the texture of those rocks on Geonosis, so you chose your parts very well. It's admirable that you really embraced their texture and used them everywhere in your MOC. imagine that it becomes a bit boring to keep building the same stuff for a long time and that it becomes tempting to throw in some other techniques along the way. But here, mixing in different techniques in random places would probably feel quite unnatural, because in reality all bricks represent the same material that has undergone the same weathering processes, so it's only logical that they have the same basic look. Of course other textures can be present in your model, but it's best when they're concentrated on a place that makes sense and not one-off things randomly strewn about, like those singular curved slopes or wedged slopes or that one brick just above the Lego World 2012 brick. Those small deviations tend to jump out as a bit jarring and unnecessary to me. In other places, you show great mixing of different textures in bigger patches though. For example, towards the right corner the surface starts to look a lot smoother which makes sense because that's were sand and dust would be likely to collect. Also, you kept the sand red parts you used together instead of sprinkling them around, which feels much more natural, as if they represent veins of another mineral poking through. It echoes the fact that nature might be random, but not noisy in a way... Apart from using a mix of different textures without going overboard, there are other things that make your creation interesting. The naturally incorporated holes in the rocks and the walkway are obvious examples, but there is another one that I really like: the overall shape of the rocks. In the picture you posted here, I really love how you have that part of the cliff coming down at a gentle angle and then receding. There is an interesting overall shape in your rockworks that elevates it above just a study in textures. And it has the same quality as the rocks in the pictures of Geonosis: steep at the bottom, gentler at the bottom and grouped together in lobes. I think you coud have gone a bit farther in that last aspect, to exaggerate a bit and make the cliff less flat but have more pronounced protrusions from it (so that when you look at it from the top, it looks more wavy) to really mimick that feel of the original even more, and you could even put those lobes at an angle with each other to bring even more variation (maybe something for a smaller diorama that does not need to come apart in baseplates?). Now, especially your back wall looks a bit flat, but I imagine that is largely due to the constraints of the base and stuff. Talking of the back, that's also a nice flight of stairs ou built, which look especially great because of their angle. The only thing that bugs (pun not intended) me is that they don't look as if they were hewn from the cliff. Now it just looks as if a part of the cliff face has jumped forward were the stairs are. To me, it would make more sense if the cliff face above the stairs would have another texture because in that spot a lot of rock would have been removed in order to make the stairs 'appear' from the rocks. I'm probably not talking sense, anymore, but if there's anything you need to understand, it is that I really like what you did here, showing us a unique piece of landscaping. I hope your Geonosis project still has many more pleasant surprises like this for us in store!
  9. It might be a quick build, but the result is quite nice for its size! On a rather small footprint, you give us a nice variety of terrain which matches very well with the content you are presenting. It makes sense to build a shelter next to rocks that provide a sturdy foundation as well as provide some cover but still on a rather flat and somewhat soft piece of land. The couple of smaller rock pieces poking through the ground you just have to live with. And the sand pouring over the rocks, almost as if it is sneaking into the shelter, perfectly reinforces the things you are saying about sand: it does get everywhere (maybe a small pile of sand where the trooper is removing the sand from his armor would be a logical detail too). So the landscape you built is both pretty to look at ánd is in perfect harmony with the rest of the scene. The shelter itself looks the part too. It definitely has the prefab feel with the tube-like construction, the net (which has the added bonus of kind of blurring the background so you get some more perspective effect) and the portable equipment inside. The slant of the net and the inclusion of the lamps suggests to me that you intend for this to represent a cutaway view of an enclosed tent, but I think you could have made that effect a little bit clearer still because now it could also look like a fence that has fallen over due to the wind. Maybe some kind of entrance at either side could help. Or maybe you could add some cloth pieces at the top of the net, as if they were rolled up curtains, and light the build from the back to get a bit of different lighting between what should be the inside and outside. That could also really help to set them apart visually without the need for a lot of building, and it would definitely create a more inside-y feeling. Finally, just a great job on all the little things! The pile of bricks next to the trooper perfectly suggests a set of dismanteled armour, way more than just a separate minifig torso could ever do even though it seems like the obvious choice. And I like how the trooper is holding some kind of cleaning cloth or sponge or whatever, to really make him seem busy cleaning. Just the fact that a minifig can't really look down seems to limit you a bit, as now the minifig seems lost in though instead of actually invested in cleaning, him staring off in the distance like that. Maybe you could instead lift the arm with the helmet up, as if he is really looking inside and pulling the dust out with the help of gravity. That could both make the action even clearer and direct the look of the minifig to the point that should interest us most from a story standpoint. In the end it's a great build! Building small really helps you to appreciate the details!
  10. BEAVeR

    [R16 - Tatooine - CFS] Refuge in the sands

    Now that's a build oozing with personality! The Eopie really seems reluctant and just tired of life, while Obi-Wan (let's just call a spade a spade) hardly notices it because he's to busy trying to look serene despite his legs hurting like crazy in a position like that Comical as it is, you manage to infuse what would otherwise be quite a static scene of just a person on an animal with a lot of life, making for a captivating image! One of the reasons your build talks so much is that you really manage to capture the weight literally resting on the shoulders of the Eopie. There are bags on top of bags in a variety of angles, as if every free spot was used to put something on. I especially like how that bag on the front right shoulder is angled like that, as it suggests the angular bone structure of the shoulder underneath it. And of course the technique you used for that basket by stacking those 2x2 round plates is just perfect, especially with that subtle mix of old and new brown! The only disadvantage of all that clutter is that your build is a bit hard to read in some places. In particular, at first I was wondering why Obi-Wan wasn't holding the reins to the animal (though of course you could always say he's using the force ), but then I realized that 1x2 tile with handle bar represents the continuation of the reins below and isn't a part of the saddle or another bit of baggage. I think the continuation would have been clearer with another one of those wip pieces or maybe a rubber hose: just something that keeps the same kind of geometry going and wouldn't merge into the rest of the baggage. You might also be able to tie the harness around the head of the Eopie together a bit more, as now the brown parts look more like coloring on the animal itself to me than parts of the same harness. Maybe a part like the minifig scabber 95348 could be useful somewhere... Another example of where things look unclear to me is at the thorax of the beast. In between the front legs, we can see the dark orange showing through. This would be fine if there would be a level difference with the legs, but as it is now, it's very difficult not to interpret it as a miscolored part of the body rather than a piece of cloth draped around it, so that the legs seem a bit disconnected from the rest. So while I love the clutter you create and the effect that has on the personality of the beast, I think some order would help to make it look even better, and make some connections clearer. The key is to tie parts that belong together visually together as well. Be it through using consistend elements as in the case of the reins, be it by making a physical bridge of color to anchor everything to the right instance. Finally, I find it remarkable that you don't use any articulation in the legs but still manage to pull of a nice pose, with the back foot lifting just enough to keep moving with the smallest effort possible for the Eopie. As if the Eopie is too tired to bend its own legs... Maintaining the studs works very well too, mimicking the 'ugly' joints on the Eopie reference, so I would definitely keep some of those! In the end, you created a lovely immersive image which manages to tell a story to me and is just pretty to look at. Well done by the way on the lovely diagonal composition in your picture with a nice silhouette and separation of color, and on really placing it in an impressive landscape. You prove again that no challenge is too hard for you: buildings, spaceships, landscapes, creatures... you can build it all and make it look awesome too!
  11. Another Lego Star Wars alternate build, yippy! And a very interesting one too which makes the most out of the limited part selection of a small set The connection to the Kashyyyk fluttercraft is immediately obvious without any need for context from the title or your text, so you've definitely managed to distill the essence out of Wookiee engineering. It's more than just those antennas/wings at the top. It's also the spindly structure of the canopy (also echoed in the use of the droid arms) that looks both strong and light, and the mix of curved and spikey elements all over the ship that make it feel so organic. Really good job observing the references and paying hommage to them with your limited part selection! At the same time, your design has a different flavour from for example the fluttercraft that appears in the movie. That one seems to be more inspired by a dragonfly while yours reminds me more of a bumblebee with its more rounded shape and less protrusions, all the way up to those 1x2 grated cheese slopes that kind of mimick those typical insect eyes. This alternate build challenge definitely brought out your creativity, and I would love to see how you would elaborate on this with a more extensive selection of parts! One thing you maybe could improve then would be the legibility of your design. Admittedly, you already have a pretty strong silhouette and I can clearly identify the most critical parts of the ship and see that it has Kashyyyk DNA, so that's already a great job, but the bottom half of the ship lags behind a bit I think. It has no real flow to it, no clear singular shape but instead a variety of angles, textures and colors not really moving in one direction. Maybe you could try clustering the shapes a bit more. For example, I would try to more clearly separate the part responsible for communication and the part responsible for defense of the ship. The communication part is themed around round parts, the dishes, while the defensive/aggressive part is all about being sharp, just like the stinger of a wasp. So try to use your spikey elements to converge more towards the weapons side. Those slopes and wedge plates would play off a gun barrel which is angled down perfectly to direct the flow of the ship towards the business end, so try to orient more slopes to point towards the weapons and maybe also use the more angular droid arms with the same purpose, so all hard elements guide your eye towards a single location, with the antennas/wings as one of main guides. Also keep up the great use of color you have now, of creating the highest contrast in color (i.e. light green vs dark grey) towards the sharp parts as sharpness in geometry and color go hand in hand, but maybe try to cluster it a bit more again, really trying to create meaningful shapes with your contrast. You can use more of the rounded bows towards the communications end, where they will match more with all of the dishes. It makes sense to orient the communication dishes in multiple directions, also up and down, but try to cluster them around the same location (e.g. more toward the bottom of the ship, where they don't interfere with the line of sight of the crew. It are some rough ideas and with these alternate models there's always a lot more balancing you have to do, but maybe it's useful to you. In any case, know that your build has inspired me a lot and keep up the awesome work!
  12. BEAVeR

    [MOC] Jakku Quadjumper Alternative Build

    I'm glad that my comments could inspire you, Retro, because I really dig how v2 looks! The front view is just great and I love how the gap between the tailfin parts plays off the inset 2x2 brick with groove to create a compelling amount of depth in your model. Another fun reveal in the front view is how clean the underside of the cockpit looks with those inverted tiles and the 4x4 double inverted slope plate, making that you can find beauty in your creation no matter in what orientation you look at it! In the end, you made integrating the tail fin parts just so easy, cleverly making the transition with the engine intakes by capping the fins with those flat silver grill tiles. That doesn't just echo the material of the intakes, but the shape language as well. It makes me wonder whether you tried to flip the orientation of those grill tiles by 90 degrees so the grooves in the tiles directly match the grooves in the rim pieces and would also provide a bit more structural rigidity. Finally, I'm still wondering if it is possible to move the enitire head maybe a stud forward... You could already gain some space by placing the gun in front of the astromech, but if my experience in building alternate models has thought me anything, I'm guessing that you're probably out of nice plates to bridge the gap Obviously, the creature you built is a bit less polished, but still looks nice enough with the great organic shaping of the back and the studs that kind of work as some kind of scale-like texture. But yet again, you manage to convince me you tried to built something else than what you describe, because to me it looks really close to the Opee Sea Killer we see in Episode I The shape of the feet is just perfect for that, as are the crazy eyes, and one could even go as far as to interpert those clips sticking out on the side as guills! O well, maybe I'm just going crazy... Anyway, I'm glad that you brought just the right amount of bricks on your holiday. I'm sad to see the pink table go though
  13. BEAVeR

    [MOC] Jakku Quadjumper Alternative Build

    That's amazing! In fact, one of my fondest early Lego memories was playing just with the bricks from the original Y-wing and TIE advanced set, my first Star Wars set. That set had a lot of alternate models shown in the instruction booklet which was just such a great point for jumping off. Ever since I have loved both Y-wings and the creativity of alternate models, so this model is an absolute gem to me! You know that an alternate model is really successful if you look at it and wouldn't tell at first sight that it is one, if it would look just the same way if you didn't have the restriction of working only with parts from a single set. And that totally happened to me here. When I looked at your picture, my first thought was that I was just looking at a MOC built to represent the original Y-wing concept art by Ralph McQuarrie with its rounded head and more pronounced cockpit. The final model just looks so clean! An often overlooked challenge in building an alternative model is the color scheme. It's hard to create a decent color scheme when the pieces that fit a certain challenge only come in a single color. Still, you managed to pull off some really interesting patterns that look like they were meant to be there. I just love what yu did with the U-shaped stripe wrapping around the head of the craft, leading into the guns of the same color. And you resisted the temptation to put the orange pieces in random places to simulate some kind of rust or something like that, which wouldn't have been the best idea since the dominance of the shear amount of the color makes it read as an inherent part of the ship rather than a detail for weathering. I just wander if it ould be possible to make the connection between the fuselage and the engine nacelles a bit more coherent by aligning the dark orange curved slope with the 4x4 round plates of the same color. Another thing that contributes to the clean look of your model is the overall smoothness of the shape. It was a clever move to use the curved slopes on the main body to make for a gradual transition between the cockpit and the engines. If there are any gaps, you manage to make them look like intentional details rather than unwanted artefacts. For example, you could have opted to make the studs in the nacelles point in the other way so the gap between the wheel rim part and the 4x4 round brick would be in the back of the model and the front would be a smoother connection. That would indeed be smoother, but the way you built it now puts the gap front and center and really shows off the unique texture it has, looking like some kind of mechanical detail or a truss structure supporting the intakes. In general, you use gaps to make the build more interesting, like offsetting the 2x2 brick with grooves by half a stud in the front side of the main body to give it some extra depth. That's really using everything you've got! If there would be one thing that I'd maybe look at again, it would be the connection between the head and the body. Now it is stuck on (amazing that you managed to pull of that SNOT work by the way) rather squarely without much of a transition. Maybe it would have been possible to put a bit more distance between those two parts of the ship by for example using some of the rounded parts from the engines (which look a tad too long for a Y-wing of your proportions), although that would involve more crazy SNOT work. In any case, I think it would have been interesting to use the wing parts in that section. You could (relatively) easy attach them to the brackets like you did with those curved slopes on the sides of the cockpit and orient them such that they form a sloping transition from the cockpit to the engines. That would really result in a sleek shape and would give some intake-like details. Maybe it would be a bit too different from the original Y-wing shape, but the fact that you put them in the back of the model as a new design feature and the fact that you put the guns behind the astromech droid rather than in front of it tell me that's not really what you're going for. Congratulations on building such a fine model from such a small set. I think you really pulled everything out of it that you could, making one of the best Star Wars alternative models that I know off. you've defenitely given me the itch to have a crack at it myself once more, just like in the goold old days! And before I go, thank for having fun with those minifigs. That totally made me chuckle
  14. Wow, I love how dynamic that looks! I can totally picture this being the moment in a movie or video game when the slow motion kicks in to show off how awesome the scene looks.You really managed to sell the emergency and distress of the situation through the motion. First of all, there the speed with which our protagonist is dragged along, indicating that he's trying to get away from something as fast as he can: it even juts out of the footprint of the build as it is too small to contain its energy. Every single part and every angle of posing in the bird and the character shows forward velocity. I especially like how the foot the creature is pushing off against is already curling away from the ground and how the leg is already tilted forward, ready to release its energy. And then there's the brilliant touch of tilting the bird's head ever so slightly, to indicate that every last muscle in the body is working. You seem to understand its biomechanics exceptionally well. And if the posing in itself isn't enough, you also manage to sell the bird's speed through your parts usage, which is more than just some NPU just because of the novelty factor. You selected parts with very organic shapes on them, and especially ridges and folds. They really look like tensioned muscles and tendons, mimicking the hyperdetailed and sharp look of athlete's bodies at the peak of their performance. Even the more conventional parts like the binoculars have this tendon-like look and you avoided the usual rectangular parts as much as possible as they would ruin that look. That is just a wonderful achievement. With such a small creature build, you've really taught me a lot! If there would just be one thing'd I change, it would be to make the binoculars and clip plates at the feet black as well to make the angles less noticeable and to avoid adding too many colors that take away from the "realism" a bit. And maybe it would be cool to replace the tuft of hair on the bird's head with a minifig beard piece or something, because it sticking out at such a sharp angle messes a bit with the aerodynamic look. The bird is only half of the story though. You also get some real intensity from the bad guy. If his pose wasn't threathening enough (maybe putting one foot on top of the ballustrade would look even more epic), I adore how the building buckles under the weight of his jump. The smooth, flowing nature of it really makes it feel like a sureal shockwave is emanating from him that warps everything around him. The only thing that seems to be unaffected by all of this drama is the landscape. I feel like you could have upped the tension just a bit more if the entire environment interacted with the motion, as it would make it look even bigger. For example, the shrubberies could have been tilted a bit as well as those stalks (maybe even with a gradient: the one furthest from the action bending the least) and the bird could have kicked up some sand while its front foot would dig into the soil more. And maybe you could even do something truly unique. I just noticed that the baseplates you built everything on have a slight curve, which actually kind of amplifies the action here: the ground itself gets warped by the tremendous forces on display. Imagine really embracing this effect and somehow making the ground even more curved. It wouldn't exactly look realistic anymore, but it would look awesome as hell! And then we haven't even talked about the wonderful worldbuilding touches you put in, like those mushrooms growing at the base of the pallisades or the fact that on one side of the road the plants are different than on the other side instead of homogeneously mixed, implying some kind of agriculture... So much to unpack in such a small build, I love it! Do keep sharing your electrifying builds!
  15. BEAVeR

    [MOC] Clone Ambush On Naboo

    Wow, that's awesome! When I have a look at your photostream on Flickr, I don't see any similar builds on there (some really awesome ship builds though: that AT-RD is both cute and kind of terrifying), so this is really great for one of your first attempts at rock building. I think the best thing about your rock work is in the shaping, and that on two levels. Firstly, I love the overall shape you gave to the rockface and the land. It curves around the land and seemingly tries climbing up the from the see there in the middle. It makes it look visually interesting and also very natural. In your creation, the land itself does not appear as a flat surface that was loosely dropped on top of the rocks as you see in quite a few MOCs, but a natural extension of the rocks that really seems to flow around the overall shape. Moreover, the incorporation of that little monument which is angled relative to the rest is awesome. Great stuff. Secondly, I think that within the overall shape of the rocks you also do some interesting things, especially with putting those bricks at very crazy angles. They're totally out of system, which gives a very natural look as reality isn't fully horizontal or vertical as well. Moreover, you manage to put some slopes around those strangely angled pieces which have a double effect. On one hand, they make the gaps smaller without totally filling them, which lets shadows create the illusion of jagged, natural cracks in the rocks and gives it more dimension than if the all holes would have been covered fully. On the other hand, they make for a nice transition with the pieces that are "in system", so that the shapes in your rock seem to flow smoothly and form one cohesive thing. These are definitely awesome elements you should keep using when you further develop your rock techniques! On the other hand, I feel like there are some other things that could be changed on your technique which have the potential to make it even more natural. For example, the difference between shape and texture. If you look at any picture of a rock face or cliff, chances are that you can see a clear structure. It looks like the rock has some big shapes, with each shape covered with a smaller texture. You see that there is a difference between variations ons a bigger scale and those on a smaller scale. You already started working on those bigger scales, with the great overall shape I pointed out earlier, but I think you can take it further: more irregular lumps of rock protruding into the see as some sort of leg, for example. Create different levels of depth and angles, different larger surfaces which will carry the detail. Then keep the detail (the studs, the smaller slopes) smaller than those bigger features to keep your shapes readable. I see that you have done this already to some extent (for example with that piece of the rock face angled at 45°, but unfortunately its level of detailing is not realy coherent with the rest of the face), but I think you can exaggerate it more. Basically try to avoid making one big surface of detailing, even though that surface has already an interesting shape as it does now. I don't know if it's clear what I want to say, but in any case I think you can learn a lot by watching closely at pictures of rocks That being said, it's still an awesome piece of work with some rocks that already look top notch. I wonder how far you can take those techniques to show us the beauty in Star Wars landscapes! I can already imagine you building this scene but with a mirror image of the rocks underneath the surface of the water, which would create an insane effect maybe, or some ruins of a broken bridge at the end of that path you built... So many possibilities, but I know that if you keep experimenting as you did here, you'll pull off something still more amazing in no time!