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 The Cyberfly Fighter Version I

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PostSubject: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Wed Jul 25, 2012 10:18 pm

The Cyberfly Fighter I



Purple being my favorite color, it should come as a surprise to very few of you that, if I were to build a LEGO System model at all, I would build something purple. That’s not to say that all my future submissions will be purple, although I doubt this will be the last of its kind, either.

That said, I don’t recall ever building a New Purple model before, or even considering it. Perhaps, due to how few and far between purple pieces usually are, the thought that my association to purple might extend into my MOCs never occurred before. When in came to LEGO and purple, I thought Technic was the only place the relationship expressed itself. This model does reek of the Technic Cyber Slam/Competition sets, where a purple guy in a usually insect-themed air vehicle did battle with a teal guy who used more modern-vehicle-like contraptions, with wheels and windshields instead of mechanical legs and painted eyes. It was really a System tribute to the one theme I thought had really used purple pieces, and used them well.

I just happened to be browsing a LEGO Inspiration book at a sidewalk sale, more for nostalgia. I doubted anything I saw would motivate me to plunge back into my basement and throw bricks together, but a purple spaceship, very different from this one, reminded me that a few recent sets had used purple, and I had bought just a few as my interest in LEGO was seeming to fizzle out. I had the LEGO Toy Story Sets, and Zerg alone might be enough to make a model that was, if not primarily purple, speckled with enough purple to pull this off.

Then my little brother, known around here as Umbramancer, forbid me to dismantle the Toy Story sets (he might be the rightful owner, actually, but I haven’t the slightest idea). Almost hopeless to create a New Purple model, but my interest in LEGO restored, I managed to find a few pieces from my purple X-Pod, including the disks from the outside of said pod, which I used to cover the helicopter rotors on the wings, as well as the corpse of the brave Knight Danju the Wise. These parts, when paired with the slightly off-color pieces from the Green Goblin’s glider, were the key pieces to my design. I didn’t worry about how to decorate the structure, but how to structure the ship to support my decorations - this probably wouldn’t have had propellers if I hadn’t thought they would look cool beneath the X-Pod disks, for instance. I built the Insectoids’ light-and-sound brick into the back rather than create a more orthodox plane’s tail, as I originally planned. That brick has a lot of underestimated potential - you may think it needs to be build around, and it can be a little cumbersome, but I found it handy, and it went with my color code. The sound effects work so well with this model that I wish you all could hear them, especially the jet engine.

All of that aside, I do have many regrets for this model, and at times I abandoned some of my more ambitious ideas for the sake of time. We all know how impractical I can be, and my idea for a complicated inner system to link the sound effects to gear functions and working projectiles ... probably won’t succeed. None the less, this is only the The Cyberfly Fighter I - I might give some of those ideas a try some time in the future.

Shall we look at the model in more detail?

Back View



The model has three defining qualities, in my opinion. Airplane-like shape with unconventional wings, a purple-and-black color code (with yellow, both grays and lime green, that is), and then this stinger-like projection at the end. I do think this brick is neat, and its sheer size probably saved me a lot of work at the end with designing the back. The proportions here are pretty good, if I do say so myself, just because this piece happened to be about the length I need to ship to extend backwards to “balance” the dimensions of the front. It’s also about the same height as the cockpit turned out to be - a much more convenient piece than expected.

Top View



See the plane-like layout? The purple Cyborg from the Cyber-Slam/Competition sets did have a few more modest vehicles, like planes and helicopters. If I did this again, though, I’d probably try for a more dragonfly-like structure, with the tail angled downwards, and hopefully with four flapping wings. I might do away with the X-Pod disks, even, replacing them with those circles from the Sonic Phantom or something. Then again, the higher wings might keep them in a four-winged version ... we’ll see.

Bottom View



I couldn’t do it all on one plate, so I used three. The light grey one which holds the cockpit together is the only one that matters - the back plates towards the back are just under pieces that were already held together by other means.

A good view of the propellers here, too. I tried to think of something to make them pop, and I considered using technic wire to wrap around the rims, and then add neon green elements. Even cooler if the rims span with the propellers, all as part of a gear function in the wings ... oh, yeah, that would be neat. Next version of this model. Maybe.

... OR MAYBE NOT.

The Wings







I haven’t the slightest idea of where I got the pieces that makes this possible. Exo-Force? Some Star-Wars ship? I can’t imagine it coming from anywhere else.

The original plan was to have them move horizontally to the rest of the model, and it ended up more like the Emperor’s Shuttle. Not to say that this doesn’t work, but I don’t even remember a conscious decision to do it this way. I guess ... the pieces told me how they should go?

... nah. This was just easier.

Like I said, I would like to improve on the mobility here, and even add more wings. Only time will tell how much of that comes to fruition.

The Cockpit and its Pilot



Due to the glare, and me not knowing how to turn flash off, this shot took a couple tries. I eventually took a few steps back and used the zoom feature, which I had been avoiding doing earlier, because I thought using the camera's zoom instead of just getting closer would produce a lower-res picture.

... I’m not sure it did, but I do know zooming was the right call on this one.

Anyway, here’s the Cyborg. I read a Cyber Slam/Competition comic once (actually how I was introduced to the line, while looking through a cousin’s old catalogs) which reported his name was Sammy. This guy is just the Cyborg, and frankly I can’t imagine him with any other name. He doesn’t have a plan, an agenda, or even a goal. He just has a passion for games and a talent with machines, and he’s willing to do just about anything that involved the two. He’s a decent manipulator, skilled pilot, and he’s easily frustrated by the uncooperative. He’s a bounty hunter, a sportsman, and above all, an adversary who will appear, again and again, doing his best to thwart you even though he rarely has any stake in the action.

Most of the pieces flew together, and I only considered another head very briefly. The one thing I doubted was the hand color - dark grey or yellow? Both arms on the technic figure were robotic, but my Cyborg wound up with yellow hands, in a subtle reminder to myself that he is (partially) human. This Cyborg hadn’t lost his arms in battle - yet.

And that’s all for a minifigure without a backstory! Ladies and gentlemen, I give you characterization.

Storage Compartments



IRL, it would be pretty grisly to keep real human skulls, with very few exceptions. For science, of course - you can get away with murder for science. Sometimes. And yet, in the LEGO universe, we see them all the time, and often don’t give them a passing glance.

Arty thought it was clever of me when I used Danju’s feet like that when I showed him the model, but really, using larger figures’ feet in construction is second nature to me after my various Voriki models. I always wanted him to have back Toa Mata feet - I don’t remember straying from that once - but I often incorporated Onepu’s feet somewhere on the leg, almost like a bell-bottom. I already knew I wanted some tubes running around, anyway.

Nice close up of the wing joint here, too. Maybe one of you can tell me where that piece is from?

Artillery



A Cyber Slam/Competition tribute with no real projectiles. Tsk, tsk. I was going to use that black technic shield for a flick-file missile, until I realized I wanted it more to hold the tube in place.

My heavy use of the trans-neon-green cones makes me glad I sprung for the Mars Mission sets. Actually, many of the parts I used came from one of the UFOs I bought, as well as from a few pieces of a TIE-Fighter I dismantled further. Half-complete models do have their perks - I wound up with two of those IG-88 army builders for some reason, and, when I found both intact, I immediately used many of their parts in the basic construction.

Nick and the Cyborg



My Nick Striker figure, who is by no means final. There were actually two teal pilots going up against the Cyborg, but the one I preferred had one mechanical arm and one mechanical leg. I have given him neither, because although I know a perfect pair of pants, I never bought that set and probably never will. Teal hands from Greedo and a teal Rock Raiders torso don’t really add enough color to him, in my opinion - I would like to add the light gray pieces if I ever get a chance.

I also felt like sharing that the Cyborg is bold, as far as I am concerned. Nick probably has a mop beneath that helmet of his, but his adversary has nothing, much to Umbra’s chagrin. He can’t stand minifigures without headgear, for some reason.

The Cyberfly could have used a lot of pieces from the Toy Story sets, but I respected Umbra’s wishes and left them alone. He still guards all of the pieces he holds dear in separate bins, and sometimes reprimands me for using a piece I found in a bin that he then wants upon seeing it, claiming he loved it, but didn’t know where it was. He claims that if he lets me keep it, I’ll lose it, and he’ll never see it again.

Even though I am the one who found it.

... he didn’t demand the Cyborg’s torso back, though, even though it came off a purple alien he had deemed precious and then somehow lost. I found it in a bin and tossed in the remains, only to have him appalled at me for taking it when he found the hands and head of the guy days later. I think he knew that I knew that he knew that we knew that was the only New Purple torso with any details we have - except for Zerg, and he’d much rather I have this than that.

I exaggerate the problem, of course. I love being downstairs with him, and I love MOCing again. I had delusions for a while that LEGOs really were just for kids, but of course we all know that gibberish. LEGOs aren’t just toys, they’re tools, tools I have rediscovered the magic with.

I’ve never built something I was as proud of as this. Seriously, I could talk about it all day - a lot of thought went into it, and that, combined with my natural inclination to type for pages what could be said in a paragraph, resulted in a MOC submission topic much, much longer than what you may be used to.

As a result, I have no trouble inviting you to share your thoughts about this model and my overly verbose explanation of its details, in this very review topic. Build me up, tear me down, but even though I haven’t done this in years, I did it, and helping Codrex Magna through some slow times was never far from my thoughts, either. :D

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PostSubject: Re: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Fri Jul 27, 2012 5:51 pm

Ridiculous cool bro. Ridiculous cool stuff.

The first unusual thing I picked out was (or were?) the pair of Danju feet, which I wouldn't have thought of. Great use there.

The second was the shape of the entire craft, which is also cool. It's been a while since I tried something like this, and I love how the rotor-wings on yours are adjustable. This could even be a set with details like the flick-fire missiles. The X-Pod covers seem to have found a good use here too.

As I move along through the pictures, I start to see the Goblin Glider pieces and arrow-printed tiles. Neither type of piece is obtrusive or anything here, but I don't feel like they're really necessary. The arrow-tiles are probably fine, but the Goblin Glider slopes don't seem to match anything else on the ship.

Since you were wondering, I went and looked up possible origins of the hinge plates that connect the wings. :P It seems they either came from the old '03/'04 AT-AT, or the '03 AT-TE (from Star Wars of course). If you don't have those sets, all I can guess is that you got them from some sale or from trading (if you do any trading).

The Insectoids electronic brick works well as the main part of the tail, and probably only adds to the sturdiness of the design (I can only infer that kind of thing from the look of the ship, but it seems sturdy to me :P).

The Cyborg has personality as a pilot, and works with the color scheme of the entire craft here. I can definitely see that the printing on the torso is more recent (the style has changed with time), but the color is enough to hark back to the days of CyberSlam and stuff like that. If I had one comment I might suggest seeing what some dark purple (i.e., "new purple") legs look like on him, but black does better match the ship.

There are a few other things I could say, but I guess this is sufficient for now. :P Overall, I like it quite a lot, so great job on design and everything. I look forward to seeing your future MOCs too.



-|W|G|-

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PostSubject: Re: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Fri Jul 27, 2012 6:56 pm

I planned to mention in the write-up, but it looks like I forgot - building purple feet into larger models has become second nature to me from Voriki. :P I've tried about seventeen different versions of a Voriki MOC, and while I rarely stray from black Toa Mata feet, I tried to work Onepu's McToran feet to add more Old Purple. They wound up above his feet as "bell-bottoms" for quite a few versions afterwards, so the first thing I thought when I saw Danju's feet was to throw them on as armor plating.

I was unsure about those very two (sets of) pieces, actually! The Glider pieces were on the model from the start (I began with the cockpit), but I was never sure about them. As for the arrows, those were added at the last minute when I build the Danju feet tube feature, and frankly I probably have better uses for them elsewhere. Yellow peices like that - the caution stripes come to mind - have a sort of whimsical sharm to me, even though none were used with the Time Cruisers, I think of the two together. Time Cruisers, with its neglect for color codes and seemingly random features, is my favorite theme, and I'll likely repurpose those arrows for a Cruiser-inspired craft in the not-so-far-off future. I'm guessing it'll have a red-and-white swirl, some sort of gear function, classic LEGO Spaceman pilot ... yeah. Rolling Eyes

Must have been the AT-AT, I received that from my sister's friend's brother years ago, along with a massive load of other pieces just-before-my-time. I'm not complaining - the cockpit of the Cyberfly I wouldn't have been possible without Dash's helicopter, and I'm working on a MOC using Ewok Attack pieces now.

It's pretty sturdy, held together by plates along the bottom. Actually, it was originally broken into sections connected by technic pins, intended to come apart into segments, but eventually by building fused them together.

Yeah, I think the torso's either second-generation Space Police III or from the minifigure packs. It was that or Zerg's, though - I wouldn't want to use minifigure!Danju, that'd be too plain.

And, heh, I look forward to seeing my future MOCs. I'd be disapointed if I fail to deliver. :P

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PostSubject: Re: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Sat Jul 28, 2012 5:42 pm

Uh... You actually did say that, in almost the same words, in the write-up. :P I'm just saying I wouldn't have thought of it myself. At least not in a System MOC...

Personally, I think the caution stripes on the wings make more sense than the arrows. Mostly I use arrows on MOCs only to indicate levers or gears that operate functions, or else hinges and such. It's more of a personal-preference thing than the Glider slopes, but yeah. (I look forward to any Time Cruisers MOCs you make though. :P)

And ah, I see... See, this is a good reason to have friends in real life who can give you LEGO things. :P I should have thought of th- *shot*

The torso for the Cyborg must have been from the minifigure packs, as I don't know of any purple torsos besides Brick Daddy's from SPIII (and since I have that, I know it's not the same :P).



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PostSubject: Re: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Sat Jul 28, 2012 7:32 pm

Serves me right for skimming my own ramblings. Glare

Have you made a couple of System MOCs with functions? I don't see enough of them in the LEGO catalogs I leaf through these days, but no one packed more functions into a model than the Time Cruisers and their Twisted counterparts ...

Must have been a minifigure pack, then. I think the pilot of the ship that "inspired" this model had Brick Daddy's torso. Really, purple is underused. Considering how much orange and lime green were abused a couple years back, you think there would be a greater balance. I could envision purple in a couple more Space sets, and I think the Super-Hero sets are using it a little, although I'm not sure if that's good either. :P

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PostSubject: Re: The Cyberfly Fighter Version I   Sun Jul 29, 2012 6:07 pm

I don't generally make System MOCs with functions, but I have tried a couple or more in the past. The functions in sets aren't as frequent now, though, yeah...

It's not so much that I want to see more purple parts, I just want more useful ones. :P A lot of the purple parts that exist right now seem to be, like on the Cyberfly here, more decoration than deeply structural pieces. Obviously since this topic exists it's still possible to make good MOCs with more decorative-type purple pieces, but I'd like some large purple slopes and wings and such as well.

... and then it'd get overused. >_>



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