Heavy/Scratch: Beast Machines Animated

Discussion in 'Radicons Customs' started by GizmoTracer, Jan 3, 2010.

  1. GizmoTracer

    GizmoTracer Well-Known Member

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    I said I’d be revealing the last of my Beast Wars Animated line in January, and here we are! Since everybody’s been so patient, I decided to post the final two (well, two and a half) figures all at once. Here we go!

    The third stasis pod was assumed destroyed in the experiment that created the Arachnid Sisters. Instead, badly damaged and malfunctioning, its makeshift DNA scanner struggling to fill in its fractured code, the pod gave birth to an entirely new breed of Transformer: the Maximal Botanica! Inheriting what remained of Blackarachnia’s former identity as Elita-1 and gifted with a technorganic form perfect for disappearing into the jungles of the the primitive planet, Botanica began a one femme guerrilla war of sabotage against the Predacon forces, becoming a literal thorn in the side of her creator.

    [​IMG]

    By far Botanica’s greatest victory over the Predacons was recovering a downed stasis pod and awakening the protoform within as the Maximal Nightscream. Sarcastic and pessimistic, the youthful bot resents being trapped on the jungle world and drafted into a war he didn’t start. Fortunately, he resents Blackarachnia’s attempts to experiment on the remaining stasis pods even more. Despite his caustic exterior, he has a good spark, and is unwaveringly loyal to ‘Sprouts’.

    [​IMG]

    The diagnostic drone was built from spare parts in a joint effort by the Arachnid Sisters to provide an extra set of servos for the numerous experiments conducted in the Predacon base. No one is really sure where the sparkless automaton came by its dry wit and long-suffering disposition, but being reprogrammed by Glavatron into a spy and double-agent certainly hasn’t helped to calm its frayed nerves. Waspinator and the drone have bonded over their shared experiences with dismemberment.

    [​IMG]

    I certainly wasn’t much of a Beast Machines fan while it was airing, though in retrospect it comes off pretty well once you average in RiD and the Unicron Trilogy. My biggest complaint, or course, was the significant character derailment for most of the cast. Logically, though, totally new characters couldn’t suffer from that, right? Awesome! So who do we get? The obnoxious emo kid and the sanctimonious technical pacifist. Hurr...

    That said, Nightscream and Botanica weren’t entirely without merit, and they have grown on me in the intervening years. The idea of a Transformer with a plant-mode always seemed like a really neat one to me in particular, even if I didn’t love the actual implementation. I got to thinking about the practical applications of a plant mode on a jungle world, and the idea of desperate, guerrilla warfare against overwhelming odds really started to grow on me. When I saw Derrick Wyatt’s design for an Animated Botanica, the die was pretty much cast.

    So! Botanica. Personally, I really think she’s the gem of the entire collection. Her torso, head and hands came from Blackarachnia originally, while her arms came from Waspinator and from the waist down she’s the stem of a plastic wine glass (thanks to venon for that idea). I definitely wanted her arms to be able to split in half, as a nod to her Beast Machines model. Of course, there’s a considerable amount of putty and styrene at work as well, which allows for her transformation into a technorganic venus fly trap.

    [​IMG]

    The four sections of her fly trap ‘mouth’ are attached to what used to be Blackarachnia’s four front legs, allowing the ‘mouth’ to open and close, then separate and fold into a sort of petticoat in robot mode. This accounts for my biggest departure from Wyatt’s design, but I’m quite pleased with it; it gives Botanica a sort of elegant, aristocratic air. I see her as akin to a resistance fighter in occupied Paris, attending formal events by day and committing acts of sabotage by night. In my head she’s got a bit of a French accent, but that’s neither here nor there.

    As a minor point of interest, in my version, her trademark electrical powers come from the prongs on the back of her wrists, which function something like tasers. Shooting chain lightning from one’s hips always seemed a bit silly to me.

    Nightscream was a lot simpler. I spent a pretty ridiculous amount of time trying to find a suitable bat head before deciding to just make one from scratch. The ears proved to be a bit tricky; I placed steel wire in them so that they could bend into a collar in robot mode. Speaking of which, I’m quite pleased with the way his robot head came out. I must confess to a certain fondness for Nightscreams goofy hair.

    Not everybody is going to like his wings, I suspect. I tried to give them a bit of a leathery look when I extended them from pteranodon wings into bat wings, but I’m not sure how well that really comes across. One thing I do like is the way they fold up to the side to give his a sort of cape-flapping-in-the-wind look. I think it helps to visually tie him in with Botanica.

    The diagnostic drone was really an after thought, poor guy. After making Botanica I was left with a good pile of Waspinator parts, and the tiny, vestigial arms from his robot mode brought this guy to mind. He’s built around a metal lug nut (as in the fastener, not the Decepticon) with just about everything else made from a combination of putty, styrene, wire and apoxy.

    I had a heck of a time getting his arms facing the right direction. Ultimately I had to saw off the sockets and reattach them at 90 degrees. His base is made from some wooden dowel and a Pringles lid. Sometimes you work with what’s on hand. I tried to simplify his design and colour scheme to give him a more Animated look, though there’s not much to him to begin with! Still, he makes a fun little addition to the set.

    [​IMG]

    Sadly, these are indeed the final figures in this collection. Anyone waiting on Transmutate is going home disappointed, I'm afraid, and if I ever get to Animated Ravage I expect he'll be a musical instrument rather than, well, inexplicably Russian. Still, I'll be putting up a few more fun photos of these guys in the weeks to come, including a monster of a group shot, and now I'll finally have time to get a start on some other projects. Until then, thank you all for the encouragement along the way and may you always have a rubber duckie close at hand!

    [​IMG]

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  2. Cyber-Kun

    Cyber-Kun UNLEASHED!

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    the diagnostic drone is made of pure awesome
     
  3. Jetbolt

    Jetbolt Maximal Air Commander

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    Awesome
     
  4. Dormamu

    Dormamu I am Broot.

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    That is jawdroppingly amazing. I love LOVE Botanica, you made a useless character shine with your rendition. I'd love to see more closeups of Nightscreams face too, that's just too sweet.

    The diagnostic drone....just...wow. I still cant imagine how you took a lugnut and turned it into that. Major props to your ingenuity!
     
  5. Terrorcon_King

    Terrorcon_King Has Gone Transmetal

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    Damn GT!
    i had soo many plans for some of the BM figures, and you have just blown my idea....
    OUT OF THIS WORLD!
    Just amazing:jawdropper: 

    PS:
    SEND ME THE DRONE!!!!
     
  6. The_Black_Sheep

    The_Black_Sheep Willyna...

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    Whoa! They're all top-notch work but I'm strangely drawn to your Botanica! She's... She's... She's Perfect! HasTak, This is how you make a Botanica! :D 
     
  7. ORIO

    ORIO Plant-Based Bot Super Mod News Staff

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    These are stunning! But... no more :(  boo

    There are many vehicons that are screaming your name dude!
     
  8. primeone

    primeone PRIME

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    botanica and emoscream are totally killer and worth the wait i would totally buy them both if hastak produced them cant wait to see what you do next
     
  9. Unfall

    Unfall Shattered Glass

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    I recall hearing something about using these in a comic, is that still coming or will I have to cry:dunce 

    Anyway, gorgeous figs you have here, especially Botanica. I didn't even think that a "cool" version of her was possible, but you've proved me wrong.
     
  10. darksage78

    darksage78 Maximal

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    I've said it before but I'll say it again, simply astounding!
     
  11. AniProwl

    AniProwl Banned

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    Those are some nice kitbashes.

    Good job!
     
  12. plowking

    plowking I'm with ErechOveraker. Veteran

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    Awesome work as always man. That drone is just too cool. I wouldn't mind having a few of those set up in the display with my Animated stuff.

    Hate to see your line come to an end too. But I'm sure you got some more awesome stuff up your sleeves....

    :thumb 
     
  13. ALPHAMAGNUS

    ALPHAMAGNUS Sector70: Reformatting... Veteran

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    These are all a great finish to the line, did I miss Inferno? nevermind I did.

    Wishes for RiD :Animated ;) 

    or "cassettes" Animated
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2010
  14. GizmoTracer

    GizmoTracer Well-Known Member

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    Glad to hear you're enjoying these guys! I was a little worried that I should have kept a ringer like Megatron in reserve for the finale, but I'm really pleased with the way these guys turned out.

    Ha, well, that's the advantage of reimagining a generally loathed character; nobody complains about the changes you make! As for the drone, he was actually surprisingly difficult to get together. Shockingly, it's tough to apoxy things to a chrome lug nut. Quelle surprise! Lot of trial and error on that one.

    You'll be seeing more of Nightscream in the weeks to come, but you can get a larger look at that poster here.

    You know, I actually considered taking a stab at Strika and Obsidian from Leader-class Ultra Magnus and Megatron respectively, but it really ended up being a question of cost. For the price of doing one of them, I could do three or four Deluxe sized kitbashes. Considering I had to pick up a couple Bumblebees, an extra Soundwave, a Cybertron-mode Optimus and another Prowl, plus like a half-dozen Arcees once she comes out... 2010 is gonna get rowdy.

    Well, I'm still planning on it eventually. There are plenty of secrets left to be revealed, like the true nature of Project Matrix and where all of those stasis pods came from in the first place. At the moment, however, I don't have ready access to the figures or the equipment necessary to do a photo comic well; nearly everything you'll see here was taken while I was back at my family home for the holidays. Things like sets and props end up being an issue, as well. With that in mind, I wouldn't recommend holding your breath, but I would recommend staying tuned!

    Ha ha, speaking of not holding your breath, there aren't any reimagined RiD figures on the immediate horizon. I have been giving some thought to the cassettes, in instrument form, naturally, but since they'd clearly be scratch builds I'd want to have them well thought out before attempting them.

    On the upside, I'm just preparing to start on a whole new collection of figures, and I can pretty much guarantee that it's nothing you'll see coming! Before that, though, the Beast Wars Animated guys have a few more tricks up their robo-sleeves, and there are a pair of staples for any Animated display coming up as well.
     
  15. tholmes6

    tholmes6 Well-Known Member

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    These are badass! Very creative!
     
  16. landbasered

    landbasered Well-Known Member

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    And...

    All of this is added to personal canon.
     
  17. Autobot-Girl

    Autobot-Girl is possibly insane

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    Awesome! It looks like your hard work paid off! :D 
     
  18. stratonrye

    stratonrye Maximal

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    Wow! Amazing work on both the bashes and the detailed backstories as always Gizmo Tracer. Perfect paint choices and mod again too. I can't believe this is the end of your Ani. BW line! :(  Man! That really makes me want to make my own Ani BW line (again!), especially with all the figures getting on sale for cheap now a days. But, then I remember that I'm completely broke and will have to save what little money I got for Christmas for all those awesome new movie and animated toys coming out soon. I, like a lot of other people I think, liked some of the ideas and characters in Beast Machines but was a little unsatisfied by the actual execution. One of the ideas that really appealed to me was the plant/flower alt mode. I was really excited about seeing Mr. Wyatt's design originally and am really glad to see you put it to some good use and way better execution than anything Hasbro could think up. I like what you did with Nightsceam too. What an amazing transformation from Swoop. Great work dude, :rock  I can't wait to see what you have in store for us next.
     
  19. primal primus

    primal primus Wants more Batman

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    Magnificent work! That botanica is great! I'm thinking of making one of those
     
  20. ALPHAMAGNUS

    ALPHAMAGNUS Sector70: Reformatting... Veteran

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    I just have ideas for rid Animated, I may do them , may not.

    I'd be glad to help you out on those cassettes, as I would love to see them made.
     

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