Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

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Bradster
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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Bradster » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:35 am

Thanks for the kind works, everyone! :)

Matsukami2, I completely agree. That's a great way to think about this process. Trust your eyes and instincts!

As for my April update...

I must confess: I was feeling creative burnout after all that great progress with MainBody, and I set this whole project aside until yesterday. Last night I scrubbed through episodes to collect some good pictures of LegTrax. When I make something like this that requires lots of reference photos, I like to use this free (but not open source) program called Pureref to display and arrange them. If you ever do creative work like this, I totally recommend it. It's basically a big empty canvas where you can paste images and then quickly crop, scale, rotate, arrange, and zoom in and out. Here's a zoomed-out snapshot of what I've gathered so far for LegTrax:

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Getting started on the first parts of a model is kind of agonizing to me. So I just quickly built out some very rough blocks to get a feel for the shape.

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There's obviously still a lot of work ahead, but I can already feel the creative urge returning. Here we go!

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Crash
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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Crash » Tue Apr 06, 2021 10:44 am

This is looking really terrific.
For me, LegTrax is the most interesting of the 3 Dai-X fighters, because it undergoes the most significant/obvious transformation in order to form part of the robot.

That might mean that it's the most challenging to do.

I vaguely remember that when I did the little sprites for X-Bomber the Game, I did them in the same order, for no real reason.
Mainbody was first, then Legtrax and then Braincom.
In 2D, you can just make the legs appear from 'underneath' without having to explain where they came from in the first place.

For my money, I don't see how the 'tracks' on Legtrax can actually be contained within the unit itself.
I can't remember whether you actually see the underside opening and the tracks extending down, during that fourth episode.

At a push, I wouldn't try to build it into the model, but I would have it as a further, additional little ship that gets delivered to Legtrax; a bit like the 'silhouette' equipment packs that get flown to Impulse Gundam in Gundam SEED Destiny.
You could even take that idea and run with it further, and give the track unit a more aerodynamic nose that breaks off and returns to X-Bomber, once the tracks unit reaches Legtrax.
Obviously, you don't see that in Star Fleet, but I don't know whether the show contradicts it either.

The Dynamite Dai-X figure does something similar. The track unit is like a little separate cradle that the Legtrax ship sits on top of.

I have no very exciting progress to report myself; just tweaking the site here and there to try and make it more useful.
Thanks for letting us have the updates here.
Dream big and bold and daring.

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Bradster
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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Bradster » Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:42 pm

For me, LegTrax is the most interesting of the 3 Dai-X fighters, because it undergoes the most significant/obvious transformation in order to form part of the robot.

That might mean that it's the most challenging to do.



For my money, I don't see how the 'tracks' on Legtrax can actually be contained within the unit itself.
I can't remember whether you actually see the underside opening and the tracks extending down, during that fourth episode.
Yes yes yes. This! So much this!

When I was working on my first 3D model of Dai-X back in 2002 (!!!), I remember having to completely cheat to animate LegTrax. I had to dig deeeeeeeeeep into my file archives to find this, but I did remember trying to animate the transition as "realistically" as possible. I found it, and I just reuploaded it to YouTube here:

Image
https://youtu.be/_nzG4jCIZ6k


What you don't see there, though, is that the backs of the legs/shins on this model were totally wide open and hollow. I also added a pair of sliding doors/panels in the inside of the lower legs to allow the hip part to slide into place. Also the feet have to move forward a bit to make space for the hips part that comes in behind them. But the actual "tracks"? Nope. Couldn't do it. I could not think of any way to reasonably fake that part into one single model.

I'm convinced that LegTrax simply breaks reality. It is impossible! A paradox! It's like… an inside-out TARDIS? It cannot exist in both forms without some kind of space-warping matter-rearranging wibbly-wobbly… maybe using lots of invisible nanites like Iron Man's suits in the later movies, the ones that could reconstruct themselves out of thin air like magic. :lol:

At a push, I wouldn't try to build it into the model, but I would have it as a further, additional little ship that gets delivered to Legtrax; a bit like the 'silhouette' equipment packs that get flown to Impulse Gundam in Gundam SEED Destiny.
You could even take that idea and run with it further, and give the track unit a more aerodynamic nose that breaks off and returns to X-Bomber, once the tracks unit reaches Legtrax.
Honestly, I think I'll probably just choose one of the two forms — probably the folded solo mode since that's how it normally resides when docked with X-Bomber — to build as a proper model. I might make a second joined/standing/robot version later, but they definitely won't have any connecting transformations. ;)

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Crash » Fri Apr 09, 2021 1:54 pm

I see no personal need to make them transform, myself.
Better to create the detached versions of each of the three ships and a single Dai-X 'character'.

Let peoples' imagination do the work. You'd be able to create or re-create all sorts of scenes and renders without going into the actual transformation process.

I like the idea that they use near the end of Star Trek; Voyager, where they put big replicators on the outside of the ship, that look like big phaser emitters bolted on, and those generate the armour that extends over the hull.
And not only did that look believable, it also looked brilliant as a special effects sequence when the armour covered the ship over.
Dream big and bold and daring.

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Augustine7529 » Sun May 09, 2021 12:51 pm

Hi there. Star Fleet was my favorite TV show when I was a kid! Please read my book Joe Finds His Way Home, I mention this awesome show in it!
#starfleet #xbomber #anime #animetwt
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08PDLG5KL

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Bradster
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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Bradster » Mon May 10, 2021 3:49 am

May modeling monthly update time! :)

Not a ton of progress this time. Like last month, I haven't been able to scrape together as much free time for modeling like I had back in January and February, but the feet are starting to take good shape now. I haven't modeled the two gun ports on the right foot, but i think the left foot cockpit and overall feet shapes look good. I went ahead and modeled the jets on the underside even though they will be mostly covered up in the collapsed solo mode that I'm generally aiming for.

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One thing that's very reassuring when modeling is discovering that some parts you've already made can be reused elsewhere with no changes. Those jets on the feet are the exact same jets on Mainbody's arms. Since I didn't even have to resize them, this means that so far I've been working to the correct scale!

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Crash » Wed May 12, 2021 6:32 pm

Hi Brad,
I'm sorry about the slow reply. Things have been full-on lately.

That looks really incredible as always!
Dream big and bold and daring.

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Jiraiya » Fri Jun 04, 2021 10:25 pm

If I remember correctly the trax are hidden in the front thighs then close up and retract when transforming.

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Bradster » Wed Jun 30, 2021 3:40 pm

Skidding in with a "June" update at the eleventh hour! :o

I still haven't been able to carve out as much time I'd like to work on these models, but I did manage a few good additions a couple weekends ago. The fronts and sides of LegTrax are in far better shape now; I think I'd call them "done" unless I find some other surprising detail in one of my video screenshots. Next, I need to figure out how I'm going to model the folded-together underside. My goal here is to have LegTrax in its solo flying mode, the same as when it's docked into X-Bomber. So, I won't be modeling the hidden tank treads.

Looking at this again, I'm reminded about how it always bothered me that the skinny tube-shaped things under the "knee caps" were never centered with the rest of the shin. They do point straight down, but they're offset from the cutouts at the bottom near the feet! This is visible in the third screenshot here.

Also, I turned on some of my reference image overlays for a couple of these so you can see how I'm trying to fit things as accurately as possible. The multiple illustrations and models used in the show never match exactly, but they're good enough to get a proper sense of relative scale.

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Re: Yet another X-Bomber 3d build

Postby Crash » Thu Jul 01, 2021 11:36 am

That looks fantastic. I like it a lot. It looks very exact and accurate.

It'll look great with the mid-section added, but getting the shape and the proportions of the leg 'outer shells' this good, will have been the most difficult part of it, I would think.
Dream big and bold and daring.


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