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Introducing the worlds largest and most accurate LEGO EVA Unit 02, complete with a detailed Tokyo-3 diorama! I'm sure a number of you have already seen this build (partly or as a whole) featured on The Brothers Brick or Oficina dos Baixinhos (among others) - I'm very thankful to these blogs for putting my creation in the spotlights - but in this topic I'm going to give a in-depth look into the entire build process and dive further into the details of the build. Let's get started! Introduction & Motivation EVA Unit 02 is a mecha from Neon Genesis Evangelion (1995), one of the most popular/debated anime classics of all time. To give a little bit of background: teenage pilots working for a mysterious mega-corporation (NERV) battle a variety of gigantic aliens (the Angels) in colourful, gigantic mecha (the EVAs)... The mecha and their pilots, from left to right: Unit 02 with Asuka Langley, Unit 01 with Shinji Ikari, and Unit 03 with Rei Ayanami. The sinister-looking guy is the CEO of NERV. So, why did I choose to build EVA Unit 02? Firstly, I'm not remotely the biggest Evangelion fan out there, but at the very least I think the mecha designs and setting in the series is amazing. Between the three units above, I think Unit 02 gets the most spectacular and iconic action sequences in the show. Also, from a builder's perspective, all units have gotten multiple MOC renditions, but I feel like those of Unit 2 have been the least successful in accurately capturing the head. That, in great contrast to Unit 01 - which has been captured close to absolute perfection by Moko (see here), a great inspiration of course. In addition, Unit 02 is mostly red, meaning a colour with a very broad range of LEGO elements I could work with and one that was already abundant in my collection. Bearing those things in mind, I was confident I could be done and would end being something unique. Reference material I choose to stay true to the design as seen in the TV series, as opposed to the variations that appeared in the several movies that followed. I used the action figure below as my main reference standard for the body measurements and shaping, and screenshots from the episodes for the rear and the head. I got the idea to make a base diorama from a huge and beautiful display model by Prime 1 Studio, below. Unlike Unit 02 itself, my Tokyo-3 diorama is not a one-on-one recreation of any specific part of the city as seen in the anime. I paid close attention to the civil infrastructure, though. Build process I made the head (well, the first of many) first, as a proof-of-concept. This is the part with the highest density of details and colour blocking, and is therefor critical in choosing the scale, or so I found out. Though that first head wasn't perfect, it showed me that the scale was right. I measured its height, and together with my main reference printed out on A4 I determined which length in cm and studs every body part should get, with the help of Sariel's unit converter. Later I realised that the chosen scale was quite close to nanofig scale, very convenient! I started building mid-January and I finished at the end of September, though I set it aside for a few months to work on other builds. The collage above is arranged in chronological order, time passes from left to right and top to bottom. After making the head, I experimented with the shoulders and spine, essentially with how to maximize friction, also a bit of preliminary breastplate work. Then I realised that it would be better to start from the hips. Then upper leg, lower leg, ankle and foot (tough!). Then upwards: pelvis segment, second segment (front), third segment (front) and breastplate version 2, with increasing difficulty. After that, the rear: pelvis spine plate, second spine plate, and third spine plate. That's when the most difficult part started: the upper torso. It's where the breastplate, shoulders, spine, neck, power plug, entry plug and plug cover hatch have to connect, while also retaining the odd angles that they are required to have. At this point I sure wished I had chosen a bigger scale, so that I would have had more inside space to solve these problems. In the end though, I found a solution to everything, quite rigid as a whole, too. Here an insight into how it fits together: Green = clips Yellow = technic pins Aqua = hinges Blue = bars Pink = click hinges After the torso was done, I did the hands, upper arms, shoulder blades, and lower arms. Then head version 2, Spear of Longinus, head version 3. Started the base: foundation, street, pavement, traffic lights and street lanterns. Cars, vending machines, raised pavement. Then the main building: inner structure, front, then lock-down doors, roof and greebles. Next, secondary building: ground floor with garage, open staircase and hardware store, then second floor and roof. Then the elevated railway bridge, large stairs and railway platform. Tertiary buildings with vending machines. Finally, head version 4 and head version 5. The completed model I must say, I'm very satisfied with the end result. The iteration on the head definitely paid off and the base, despite not initially being planned, was a creative adventure in itself. The most fascinating thing about the nanofig scale is how it transformed the meaning of various parts, but mostly the printed ones. For example, I have used different 1x2 smartphone tiles to represent vending machine interfaces. Also, a partially covered 2x2 plate from Star Wars turns into a road sign. But my favorite is the 1x2 console from Back to the Future, which I used here for the arrival and departure clock at the railway platform! List of features Although it could be deduced from the images, I will list the features of this build. All limbs of Unit 02 can be articulated, as well as the neck, jaw, shoulder blades and spine (lean to the front and lean to the back, but it's tricky). Unit 02 has an opening hatch under which the entry plug can be inserted or taken out (see the third image down from the second column in the WIP collage). Tokyo-3 features a large office building, of which the facade can be closed off by lock-down doors. The doors slide in from above, which does require the edge of the roof to be temporarily be removed. Tokyo-3 features a smaller building, the hardware store. The first floor can be removed to show the ground floor, which has an opening garage door, a store interior with some electronics, and a staircase. For emergencies, all windows on the first floor can be sealed with hatches. The diorama features numerous small details such as lampposts, traffic lights, a parking sign, graffiti, vending machines (six of them), trees, benches, dustbins and a road map. Additionally, there are three hatchback/SUV cars, an MPV and a TV broadcast truck. Reception, recognition & events Though I would not normally write about this, unlike my previous builds this was really my first full-blown recreation an existing (licensed) thing. I created this with the idea of taking it to comic cons and possibly other events, not only to LEGO conventions. Thus, I was curious what the response would be from within and from outside the LEGO community. I will use this paragraph to keep track of my experiences, if I feel like it. Blog posts, articles and other coverage: Oficina dos Baixinhos: https://oficina.blogs.sapo.pt/tokyo-983908 ArchBrick Daily: https://archbrickdaily.wordpress.com/2019/10/02/tokyo/ The Brothers Brick: https://www.brothers-brick.com/2019/10/07/lego-eva-unit-02-has-activated/#more-188744 Lega Nerd: https://leganerd.com/2019/10/11/lunita-eva-02-lego-e-il-diorama-microscala-di-tokyo-3/ BrickVault: https://youtu.be/xWuyKBLBwhE?t=344 ToyPro: https://www.toypro.com/jp/news/296/view-this-impressive-anime-moc-and-meet-his-designer (Also available in other languages here) Events: Comic Con Antwerp 2019: Very limited response. The audience, whether that were general visitors, cosplayers from American/European franchises, or even anime/manga cosplayers, hardly paid attention to the creation. Occasionally, someone stopped and stared, but an appreciative look, let alone a look of recognition, was rare. Over the weekend, I spoke to around six people who were really enthusiastic about it. Two of those were vendors with products of the same franchise, and one was genuinely a big Evangelion fan. LEGO World Utrecht 2019: Strong positive response! The creation was only on exhibit for a day, but there were reportedly more than 11.000 visitors, if I remember correctly. From the first few minutes till the last few, kids were running up the creation and expressing their wonder. I've spoken to about 7 Evangelion/anime fans, and a number of others. Greatest of all: LEGO Star Wars Designer and Gundam/anime hobbyist Kurt Kristiansen was very much impressed with it, and there was just enough time to tell him all about the model. That made my day, my week, my month, of course!