Every Generation… has a Y-wing

Y-wing evo, by space_e, on Flickr

 

Spoiler – there are no Y-wings in The Force Awakens. We have a renewed X-wing, a spiritual successor to the Imperial Shuttle, new walkers way off in the distance, and a transporter with a definite B-wing style though. The guys over at From Bricks to Bothans were inspired by those vehicles and launched a contest to update others as well. Not surprisingly, the Y-wing was the most popular vehicle to be aged, so it was hard to stand out. But not for space_e, whose stunning creation above effortlessly won the first prize. He succeeded in completely re imagining the fighter while keeping it familiar. He made everything more condensed and smooth – the kind of smooth that still suits the OT aesthetic – with some weird pieces at weird angles, up to using road signs right behind the cockpit to maintain the beautiful flow of the ship. Combine that with extra armor plating, the toughest looking greebles I’ve ever seen and engines that only need a hint to be impressive, and you have a bomber that looks like it can deal out and deal with damage equally, unlike it’s more fragile-looking predecessor. That functional improvement makes it very easy to accept this design in the universe. A model like this blows my mind, and that’s even before we’ve talked about the fact it transforms! That’s when your jaw drops to the floor. It even makes more sense on this fighter than on the Vulture droid, because its heavy firepower make it an excellent mobile ground turret. This model is the perfect blend of nostalgia, futurism, practicality, awesomeness and beauty – it’s almost as if every single brick makes me wow. So you have every reason to check out space_e’s photostream, to witness (or build, since he has been so kind to provide the LDD file!) what the Sequel Trilogy’s Y-wing should look like.

 

Y-wing evo, by space_e, on Flickr

 

When I say space_e’s creation won FBTB’s contest effortlessly, I’m talking only about the number of votes, because there were some other models that valiantly fought to become your image of what future vehicles should look like. goatman461‘s own Y-wing was one of those models. On his model, he’s been more generous with the greebles, calling back more to the style of the original. It emphasizes that not much has to change during a couple of decades, apart from the favorite colors apparently. That way, the changes he makes to the design really pop and get more meaning, so you automatically focus on those ‘anomalies’, in this case first and foremost the single, enormous engine. The great thing is that these changes that your attention is drawn to, turn out to make a lot of sense, so it helps you understand the model. That single engine, for example, obviously packs a lot more punch than the previous one, so you know this fighter is all about speed. You want to attack quickly and you want to disappear quickly. Therefore it’s important to protect your engine at any cost, but you don’t want extra weight from cannons. And then you see why the engine is able to move around the model: in order to stay out of the direction where the shots are coming from. This design isn’t just exotic and familiar to Star Wars at the same time (already a marvelous feat), but it makes a lot of sense, and the model makes for a fun discovery trip in an extremely interesting concept. goatman461 succeeded in making one of the very first model that makes me look at the greebles not with the “I wonder what special parts he put in” view, but with a desire to understand what they are all for. That ingenuity prevents the model from looking like a Y-wing with a missing piece and more like something special that you keep thinking about. So time to put on your engineering hard hat and study the model up close in the topic.

I hope this has wet your appetite for more makeovers of familiar faces. Check out this gallery of all of the entries in the contest!

Lego Star Wars The Force Awakens Videogame

Along with the announcement they released a teaser trailer which features the same kind of great humor that we have come to expect from these games. You can watch it below and you can discuss the game in our new Lego Media & Gaming forum.

Star Wars Rebels Season Two Mid-season Trailer

Already tired off all the talk about The Force Awakens? Well, here’s something fresh: a look-ahead at the second part of the second season of the Star Wars Rebels animated series. Just like in the first part, there are more than a few familiar faces to be spotted, but all of them in a very, very interesting context! It looks like the stories will evolve to a more dark and mature tone, maybe even with something that looks like the Mortis arc from The Clone Wars… Yes there’s plenty to think about and to be giddy about! So watch and rewatch the epic visuals until the next episode airs January 20th, and be sure to look out for our reviews!

Boys and their Toys

Kylo Ren, by M<O><O>DSWIM, on Flickr

 

You know that one guy in the upper right corner on all of the latest Star Wars sets? It turns out he’s the villain in the Force Awakens, and is quite good at being it. He’s an interesting character, has awesome abilities and looks iconic already with his bad ass helmet and monk-like robes. Builder M<O><O>DSWIM captured all of those items with his terrific build. The unique and intricate shape of the helmet is impossibly captured with the simplest of pieces. He also succeeded in putting motion in smooth, flat surfaces like the flowing robes, again connected with fairly simple pieces that add detail at the same time. Yes, the tension between the moving and the static is what sets this creation apart. You have the legs in the middle of their motion, with the robes lagging a bit behind. But on the other hand they are firmly on the ground, and the powerful fists clenched, the head slightly tilted and the arms charging up. There’s such a great sense of tension and anticipation in this build, Kylo Ren seems to be taking a final deep breath before leaping into a furious combat. One final breath, gathering all of his anger and force, focus. It’s a tension and contrast that perfectly matches the character. Remarkable given that this creation was put together prior to the movie’s release. It makes the creation even more jaw dropping, so definitely check out M<O><O>DSWIM’s Flickr!

 

Kylo Ren's Lightsaber, by Nick Brick, on Flickr

 

Kylo Ren also has this unique lightsaber that makes him unforgettable. I was concerned first, but the design has grown on me. So perfect timing by Nick Brick to build us this wonderful rendition. The hilt is remarkably round with a sweet tapered end, and has the required steps in for detail. I love the exposed sub-surface detailing near the top. What really shines though, is the beam itself (well, duh, it’s light after all…). The brilliant idea originally came from Cole Edmonson, who realized how it really looks with the white core and a splash of color beyond, and integrated it all in a swooshable, duelable blade. Nick Brick expanded on it, making the colored layer a bit thicker, but especially excelled in using transparent pieces to have a smoother crossover. The grill tiles are just perfect for the sparking and bolting effect that’s so characteristic for this particular lightsaber. I absolutely love it when one builder inspires another, and in this case I have no doubt this will be the standard from now on, especially with such great creations showcasing the technique. So start your research and inspect the pictures more closely. And be sure to watch that video, because who hasn’t dreamed of violently locking his own LEGO blade with that of his foe in a snowy forest!

Over specialized? Useless? My parts these are!

Grand Master Yoda, by Djordje, on Flickr

 

When you’re a kid and everyone knows you’re into LEGO, you always hope to get a nice set. But somehow, I always ended up getting some Bionicle figure. Cool for a few minutes, but what do you do with it? It’s not like you could build a spaceship out of it or something… Mine usually ended up in a box from which they slowly migrated to cousins and the like. I didn’t really miss them, but after all these years seeing Djordje‘s unprecedented Yoda sculpture makes me regret that.

I assume he has been exposed to gamma radiation to be able to make you ask why there is any distinction at all between system and constraction parts. They all come so mystically harmoniously together in his character builds, possibly because Djorde himself doesn’t make any distinction between the categories. Someone else might have thought of that flipper piece, but no one else could have portrayed Yoda’s ears or bumpy brow as real as he. Still, it takes more than just the right parts to create a figure as convincing as this one. There are subtle things, like the deep lying eyes, the bent neck and crouching position. The right parts make sure this character has the same features as Yoda, but it are those little things that make Yoda Yoda that make this creation really come to life. I bet you have a lot to ask the Jedi master, so waste no time and visit him on Flickr. I have no doubt he’ll talk about the Force that penetrates all bricks and binds all of them, system or constraction together…