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About M'Kyuun

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    New Edwards Test Pilot
  • Birthday 07/05/1971

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  • Location
    Spokane, Wa
  • Interests
    Transformable mecha; Lego; sci-fi; ancient tech and architecture; well engineered toys

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  1. Glad I checked out the thread, as I wasn't aware that the Proto-Garland was available for PO. Got mine through Anime Export. I've been wanting a PG for years- I skipped the Yamato due to breakage concerns, but the Arcadia Garland seems to be improved upon by comparison. I'm not crazy about the truncated driver figs, though- seems a bit of an engineering cop-out. Small concession if the Proto-Garland turns out well.
  2. Which makes me glad that, Dropkick and Blackout aside, I've no interest in the Studio Series figures. My opinion notwithstanding, your review is appreciated, especially when you're prepping for travel out of country. Have a great trip and take care, Mike. And if you're headed to Hong Kong, y'might wanna take a gas mask, just in case.
  3. Or make the head big enough so that legends scaled figs of Rodimus, Kup, Springer, Arcee, Jazz, Bumblebee, and Cliffjumper can crash through the eye, which has a break-away 'smashed glass' feature and a green LED to shine through the hole. If you're gonna have a big Unicron head, you may as well be able to do something with it. Oh, and have it play "Dare" along with Unicron's final words before he goes all splodey.
  4. My wife and I recently picked up a DVD set at Walmart containing Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and Mirrormask, and I watched The Dark Crystal for the first time. I was really impressed how well Henson and Co. pulled off all the practical effects and puppetry throughout, and I agree with technoblue that it still holds up. Gotta say, the Netflix version looks like an awesome mix of CG and practical effects that really transcends the limitations of 80's effects, while maintaining the look and feel of the original. On a side note, two years ago while attending a convention in Seattle, my wife and I paid a visit to the Sci-fi Museum where they had a Jim Henson exhibition. Among the many puppets were both Jen and Kira, as well as Aughra, and one of the Mystics. Anyway, it was a little surreal to see all these Muppet and Sesame Street characters I grew up with just inches away within these glass cases. Up close, the craft and workmanship involved is just amazing.
  5. TE-01 is definitely clever. Taking it closer to home, look no further than MP-36 Megatron. To effect a decent transformation from thin handgrip to bulky robot legs in keeping with the Sunbow animation has been something of an engineering hurdle for both Takara and third parties. But, Takara solved it with an ingenious folding-in-on-itself transformation system allowing for both gun and bot modes to look proportional. (I hope Arcadia and Bandai are both taking notes if they produce a YF-21 and/or variants). I most certainly believe that Takara has the engineering chops to make a better engineered Unicron figure that relies far less on folding panels; however, I think they were laboring under a myriad of constraints, chiefly budgetary, along with Hasbro's requirements, US safety laws, etc. To that end, unfortunately, the system of panels was the most effective way to proceed, at least in the eyes of those who make the decisions. It's not the best, but it gets the job done, and he still presents pretty well, although he's got a backpack, not unlike a certain upcoming red and blue MP figure, that's fit for summiting Everest.
  6. I don't disagree with you; with all their experience, they should have been able to create more of a true 'transformer', utilizing more of the body parts to effect transformation rather than their far less elegant multiple-folding-panel solution. It is, indeed, a rather steep price tag, and I, too, would have liked to see commensurate engineering brought to bear. Alas, it is what it is, and given consideration that this may be the only opportunity to have a Unicron that is at least this faithful, I felt compelled to back it. At this point, I don't think it's going to see production, which is bittersweet- I keep my money, but it would have been a nice piece to have on display next to the rest of my CHUG shelves. Considering engineering, I think of Unique Toys' Challenger, and imagine the possibilities. I'm curious to see what Zeta's version is going to offer, as it seems it may soon be the only game in town, so to speak.
  7. I'm not really a fan of the cell-shaded look, but I can appreciate both the appeal and a decent application, and that doesn't look half bad. I wonder if Hasbro will start making more figures with cell-shading if this one sells well. They do love their repaints, and this seems a cheaper, simpler way to go while still putting out a niche version that appeals to fans. Over on the TFW frontpage, John Warden has a new vid showing off a couple features of HasLab Unicron. This thing doesn't seem to picking up much momentum in backing despite the trickle of promotional vids. As of right now, they only have 2,463 backers, with only 18 days to go to reach 8,000. The light at the end of the tunnel is receding. It's a shame, for all its flaws, it's still the best Unicron figure they've ever made, and I've wanted a decent representation that actually turns into a spherical planet for years. While some may feel their Armada version is good enough, I want something better, and this, IMHO, is about the best we're going to get, at least officially.
  8. I'm glad folks are enjoying the link- the guy is gifted, no doubt. As to your latter statement, I believe he revisits some of his models to update them as new elements come along. But yeah, some of his larger aircraft models are incredible. Having worked on the real thing, his B-1 Lancer model always astounds me with how well he captures the shapes and functional features of the plane. Just beautiful.
  9. For the aircraft enthusiasts among us, I thought I'd share a link to Ralph Savelsberg's Flickr. Ralph has long been a well known and well regarded MOC builder, who builds across the gamut of artificial self-propelled objects, and since aircraft have been the topic of discussion of late, I thought it apropos to mention him. I don't know if Ralph takes on commissions, but as with any artist of note, perusing his work is a reward unto itself.
  10. Picked up the Blu-ray/DVD combo today and gave it a watch. I liked the story, and some of the dialog made me LOL. The focus was primarily on the complex relationship between Batman/Bruce and Catwoman/Selina, with the Hush storyline as backdrop.
  11. I wasn't aware of Kurt's MOCs or Plane Bricks, so, naturally, I had to check them out. Impressive builders all around. Plane Bricks was started by a 19 year old who was already building at this level when he was around 16. I'm always gobsmacked by the talent many fans possess, but it's really incredible when kids have this prodigious ability. I'm a mediocre builder on my best day, so to see these Mozarts with the brick pounding out one incredible MOC after another is both awesome and humbling. Valkyrie Hunter D, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention your Hind- looking good. You'll have to share some pics of the final product. Some nice SNOT work on the lower empennage. I never realized they sat at such an incline on their gear- one of those interesting design quirks. Kinda like the Harrier.
  12. I'm currently reading Endurance by Scott Kelly; prior to becoming an astronaut, he was a Navy pilot, flying the F-14 during the Gulf War in the 90s, and later as a test pilot. He mentioned a couple times that the F-14 had terrible flight characteristics. He makes mention of Kara Hultgreen's crash, pointing out the poor inlet airflow in turns and subsequent compressor stalls that were a known issue with the plane. Although he doesn't express it emphatically, and he's fairly candid, I think he shed no tears when they finally retired it in 2006. Kelly says he tested one of the improvements, and that, had it been installed at the time, it likely would have saved Hultgreen's life. According to the F-14 Wikipedia article, the TF-30 had a low thrust to weight ratio, and the engines were very susceptible to compressor stalls, which could lead to unrecoverable flat spins. The Secretary of the Navy during the 80's called it a "terrible engine". Not exactly a glowing endorsement. I still think she's a right pretty airplane, though. I had an opportunity to 'tour' the USS Kitty Hawk back in the mid 90's, and there was a lone F-14 parked on the flight deck with an engine removed. As an Air Force guy, I remember it's being big, cool, filthy, and forlorn.
  13. That's some serious panel madness. I like how the arms transform essentially as they did in the Movie. My thinking is this vid comes a little late to try and stir up excitement. Then again, seeing all those panels laid out, it might put some folks off. Given the lack of momentum on the backing front, unless Hasbro finds another way of funding it, I don't think it's going to see production.
  14. I watched Battle of the Planets and Speed Racer as a very young kid, and later, Transformers, which one could say was anime as well. BotP made a lasting impression on me- planted the seed, so to speak. It and Transformers still have a special place in my heart. However, Macross Plus was really my doorway into Macross (never saw RT as a kid), and into anime on the whole, and the anime I'd consider the most poignant to me as a fan. As much as I enjoy reading, for some reason, I never got into comic books or manga, although I greatly appreciate the talent behind both. There's so much anime out there, and I've barely scratched the surface, especially with classics like Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo, Evangelion, Ghost in the Shell, GitS: SAC, SDFM, Akira, Bubblegum Crisis, Gundam, Monster, Assassination Classroom, Attack on Titan, etc. it makes picking a favorite increasingly difficult. The Japanese are great storytellers, especially in the realm of sci-fi, and so I'm just glad there's this amazing medium that panders to my love of the genre.
  15. I've never heard of Brick Designers, so I perused their site. Some impressive models there. There's a noticeable difference in pricing between them, and I wonder if they also include modified bricks with some of them to account for the difference.. Brickmania is another MOC seller that specialize in military vehicles. They include minifigs, custom parts/accessories, custom decals, and all parts to build the model, at a rather princely sum. Build Better Bricks is another MOC instruction site with a wide range of models across pop culture and other themes, designed primarily by a handful of very well known, prolific, and exceptionally talented LEGO builders within the community. I know that Tyler Clites also takes on commissions. Congrats on scoring, and modding, a really well done Jayhawk, Valkyrie Hunter D.
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