Before there was The Force Awakens‘ T-70 X-wing fighter, there was the Original Trilogy’s X-wing. Before there was the Original Trilogy’s X-wing, there was the ARC-170 fighter, one of the coolest ships to come out of the Prequel Trilogy. It is as if the ship went through an evolution, like it only can in the Star Wars universe. But evolution is a tricky thing. If you’d do it all over, you’d end up with a wildly different result. Now imagine doing the entire evolution of Star Wars ships again. Excited yet? If not, let me show you Maelven‘s creation above to illustrate how awesome the results can be.
I love how it clearly has the ARC-170 DNA but instantly convinces that it is the better design. It looks sleek and agile, like a darting dragonfly. You’d gaze at in amazement, until you realize it’s high time to run. That’s because the shape is so unique, without being over the top. The body is fairly standard, but the wings!… You have to have some guts to build wings that big, because they can begin to look flat and boring. You can cover them with greebles and intimidating cannons to fix that, but you’ll loose the sleekness that can give a creation that awe-inspiring touch. Or… you can have the genius idea of playing with the contours of the wings. You can make holes in them, that magically make them look stronger. And you can make notches, that paradoxically improve the aerodynamics. You detail with geometry. It’s the hardest kind of detail to pull off, because bricks and smooth angles don’t mesh that well, and generally, you have no idea about the result, while it will impact your design drastically. But if it’s executed perfectly, like Maelvan did, the results are stunning and make way more impact than the fanciest greebles you can think of. It’s a ship that would look magnificent if it were nothing but the wings, and it’s an indescribable beauty if you add a soberly complex body and unparalleled stand to it. Of all of the possible outcomes of the evolution, this one might be the prettiest. So hurry to Maelven’s photostream before it evolves even further!
Wow, that was awesome. Let’s do it again! Let’s think again what the ARC-170 might involve to in another parallel universe… You could end up with Bob De Quatre‘s version, for instance. It’s an evolution more along the path that lead to the X-wings. It’s great how the feature of that ship that gives it its name is alluded to, but interpreted completely different, with the wings separating but meeting again in that unique teardrop shape. It’s a wonderful place for the engines to rest, so far away from the body for a ship of this lineage. The void between the main part of the ship and its engines is something I’ve never seen before but don’t mind seeing again, because it gives the ship a light and fast look, without compromising on the power it commands. Furthermore, those engines being apart gives you plenty of room to look at them from all sides, to take in all of the greebleless detail with all of those layers. The same goes for the fuselage, almost suspended in mid-air to look impressive from all angles, from its big bold blue nose to its intricately shaped back. Every component gets room to breathe, but everything is still firmly connected to each other in a beauty of a ship. Bob De Quatre, the driving force behind this evolution, pushed things in a new and wonderful direction, so go explore his topic. It once again shows how creative evolution is in taking what we all think is incredbile, and turn it into something even more superior and previously unthinkable, all with the help of the intelligent design of some amazing builders.