Design analysis & discussion *Spoilers*

Discussion in 'Transformers Movie Discussion' started by flamepanther, Aug 25, 2006.

  1. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    First PLEASE do not come in here to bash the designs or to defend them. There are a ton of other threads for that. I like some, I don't like others. They are what they are. In this thread, I want only to examine and discuss what the influences behind the movie designs might be, and how they got to these from some of the older designs from previous generations of TransFormers. Trolling goes elswhere. Thanks.


    Let's start with the one everyone's talking about: Megatron.


    I can't readily see much similarity between Megatron's body and any previous incarnation, but his head actually has some loose roots in G1. As I see it, the classic Megatron head design has three main components: a silver face, a black inner helmet with a silver trident crest on it, and a silver outer helmet. I'll be highlighting these in pink, green, and red respectively.

    G1 box art, based closely on the toy:
    [​IMG]

    G1 cartoon, based loosely on the toy:
    [​IMG]

    Note the dark area above the crest in both of the above images. Now here's the "normal" mode head for Megatron in the movie:
    [​IMG]

    Again, note the silver trident crest with the dark area above it. This is mostly covered up in "battle mode":
    [​IMG]

    The extra plating on the face makes the facial structure a bit clearer. Most important though is the definite addition of an exterior silver helmet. It seems to be composed of three separate fragments now, which gives the outside of the helmet a very different outline, but the inside frames the face somewhat similarly to how the cartoon helmet does.

    More later. I'm interested in everyone's thoughts. Again, thank you for not trolling, and please keep this about analysis of the designs, not your personal feelings about them.
     
  2. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    no offense dude but i think youre reaching.

    i appreciate the effort youre putting into it but the basis of design is gratuity. when you make a reference (for continuity's sake for instance) the underlying motive is immediate recognizability and identification.

    if you have to look hard for it, that means the design has already failed.

    this would have been more constructive if you were referencing non TF sources, since the megs design in particular, looks nothing like a TF from a laymen's POV.
     
  3. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    I am well aware that he doesn't look like Megatron at first glance. If you'd read my posts in other threads, you'd know that I don't like this particular design much at all. I am not interested in what the designs succeed or fail at in this thread. I am only interested in reverse-engineering the possible thoughts of the designers and any roots the designs might have in older incarnations, even if it doesn't work for most people. You're taking the discussion exactly where I didn't want it to go. Attacking and defending the design is done plenty elsewhere. There is very little thoughtful examination of the design removed from personal feelings about it, and what little there is gets drowned out. I've made a place for that here, and I'd like you to respect that.
     
  4. Dark_Convoy

    Dark_Convoy Old Bastard Veteran

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  5. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    Okay guys, the key word in the thread title is "ANALYSIS". If you're not going to analyse the designs, there are other threads for you to go to.
     
  6. timshinn73

    timshinn73 Well-Known Member

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    Why did you start a new thread when this fits in perfectly with the "Trantech" thread that you have already posted in? Just curious why you thought this was any different than the first thread.

    Anyway, your idea is a stretch, to say the least. I can follow you thought process, but to be honest, if I have to sit in the theatre and squint real hard and try to think of Megatron everytime this "robot" is on the screen, it's not a sucessful design, in my humble opinion.
     
  7. GundamHeavyArms

    GundamHeavyArms Zippity Doo Dah

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    I understand that you want this thread to only be about analysis, but I gotta say with all the opinion flying around here and in the stages many of us are in. There are going to be very few that want actually analyze these images, but instead give their opinions on what they think they should look like and what they don't like about them. I myself don't care for the designs, but I do like to look at the designs and say I wonder where they thought that idea up. For instance, I think the designs for Starscream came from a Grunt in the Halo games.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Notice how their heads look a lot alike and the short squatty pose. The arms are nearly as long as the legs, even though the grunts legs bend forwards and Starscreams bend backwards.
     
  8. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    crap, i wrote a whole buncha stuff and lost it.

    deep breath.

    thats exactly my point. analysis. the problem with your hypothesis is that the design was in fact derived from g1 megs. thats purely speculative conjencture based on the character name designation.

    thats the thing with visual design. its so subjective.

    if you were really going to analyse it, you would have taken broader scope to include general scifi design e.g, giger for instance. by shoehorning the design in what you think its derive from youve already created a hard line in the discussion. wheres the dialogue in that?

    you said it yourself. trying to reverse engineer the design. yet youve already drawn your own conclusion.

    that is not analysis.

    e.g. the trident motif. its not intrinsic to g1 megs design motif. its not even the prevailing motif.

    with all due respect, i dont really see an issue with dissecting the design. my problem is youre telling ppl to not work with presumptions when youre doing it yourself.
     
  9. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    The head is similar, I'll give you that. He also has vents on the side of his head like the original Starscream, and the cockpit is in the right place. I can't find much relation to old Starscreams beyond that.

    However, I think there's a reason they made him so squat. Remember when it was first announced that there would be no mass-changing in the movie? A lot of fans expressed concern about how huge Starscream and any other jet transformers would be compared to the Autobots. In particular, I remember protests that Starscream shouldn't be taller than Optimus Prime. Result? They've made Prime as tall as they can, and now they've made Starscream compress as short as he can. That's probably why he's got the enormously broad shoulders and why his legs bend like an animal's.
     
  10. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    It's a simple question: "How could they possibly have gone from point A to point B?" They could certainly do so by crosspollinating the concepts with other designs. There are also still tiny broken fragments of G1 hidden here and there. My point to you earlier is that I want to leave out of it whether we think the designs "succeed" or "fail", which is what you immediately tried to turn it into. THAT is what I want to keep out of this.

    Please. No more attempts from anyone to derail the thread in this fashion.
     
  11. KA

    KA PENIS GOES WHERE?!!

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    call it a bunch of crap if you like, but i still insist that by limiting your references to transformers only youre already self-imposing constraint on your so-called anaylsis.

    again, i am discussing abt the design here, or rather your approach to analyzing the design. your resistance to conceding references other than TFs is starting to sound like denial.

    heres a simple, straightforward analysis for example: megs maw looks like predator creature design. i dont even have to use diagrams to illustrate a point like that.
     
  12. GundamHeavyArms

    GundamHeavyArms Zippity Doo Dah

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    Yeah I see what you're saying about the size thing, but you would think it'd help their "the Autobots are underdogs" image out.
     
  13. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    I think so too, but Don Murphy seems to have picked that particular moment to listen to that particular fan complaint. I'm not saying I like it, I'm just saying I think that's how they came to that particular design choice.

    KA: My initial paragraph seems to have confused you. As I said already in this thread (more than once) there may well be non-TF design elements here. I have little doubt of that, actually. It is not my intention to exclude those here. However, based on comments from the movie staff and from design elements present in some designs and very obvious in others (Prime and Bumblebee), we do know that they're also taking designs we know as their starting point and inspiration, at least for some of these robots. That's not where I have a problem. It was with your assertion that the designs fail, which is, as I have said repeatedly is what I want to keep this thread clean of. That goes for opinions of "this design rocks" or the like as well. No praise. No condemnation. Unfortunately, it is very easy to disguise condemnation of these designs with a "that looks more like (whatever) than it looks like (character/a transformer)" comment. Given the tone of your first post, please forgive me if I suspect that this is what you intend to do.

    Incidentally, a Predator mouth has four distinct mandibles, which Megatron does not. If you think you can demonstrate otherwise, I guess you'll have to resort to diagrams after all. You are, as other people put it, "stretching".
     
  14. Lord Of Tetris

    Lord Of Tetris Well-Known Member

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    Well, here's my shot at the analysis of the new designs...

    Japanese designs have been the basis for most of the Transformers of the last 20 years, as the G1 toys were a Japanese line, the RiD line was entirely Japanese, etc etc etc. Some of the cooler toys (Dai Atlas, MP Convoy) are Japanese, as well as non-TF brands, like Macross. Heck, Optimus' face isn't all that far removed from a Gundam head.

    American designs are a bit different from the Japanese standard of robot design. The Japanese designs all seem to want to evoke some kind of soldier in some kind of armor, be it the samurai-like Gundams or the SWAT-team-like Ingrams in Patlabor.

    For better or worse, it looks like the movie is the first Transformer product to be free of the Japanese school of mecha design, with most of its designs from the ground up. Americans like robots that are functional and/or anatomically correct, such as either the funtional-LOOKING robots (hell if I know how functional they'd be in real life) in Aliens (the box loader) and Matrix 3, or the anatomy-inspired robots, like the Terminator.

    So, yeah. That's my analysis. I've tried to keep it opinion-free (hint: I don't like the new designs...).
     
  15. Neo-Bombshell

    Neo-Bombshell Proudly Peruvian Transfan

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    I am very very happy with this new designs. Eventhough, I still don't like very much the new Megs form, I am more than satisfied with the new designs, that's why I wanted to see on this line. I didn't buy any figure from Cybertron/Galaxy Force because they looked more of the same for me. I am not saying those molds were bad, in fact they are cool, but they seem just seem "boring" for me.

    The same happens with Classics for me. Still toys too easy to transform and too "kiddy-fied" for me. Excuse me is someone screams for what I am saying but it's my opinion. I think this line needed this new "era" of designs and toys. A I posted before, if this also brings more new fans as BW did, go ahead with new concepts.

    I have recently show the pics of all these new molds to my wife, she knows something about TF's mythos thanks for me, but obviously I think I could get a more or less objective opinion about designs.

    -Starscream: "Nice and cool mold, but it Just remind me of Starscream at all. Anyway is really cool"

    -Optimus: "Really amazing mold! This OPtimus is superb! It even look like a Spiderman's car!

    -Scorponok: "Terrific and menacing"

    -Incinerator/Blackout: "The coolest mold after Optimus. I want to see it on the movie, Are you going to buy those things, don't you?"


    I think these new designs will do great with new fans. The design looks very relistic. After all a transforming walking robot should not be any "beautiful"

    Peace!:Gouki: 
     
  16. flamepanther

    flamepanther Interested, but not really

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    I agree that's probably a huge factor in the design process for the movie.
     
  17. WWMEGATRON

    WWMEGATRON Well-Known Member

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    So you draw some lines over the pics of the G1 Megs and then draw some lines on that badly aborted fetus and explain to us it has certain " features " of the original Megs !!!!. LOOK AT THAT THING !!!. IT SCREAMS " BAY SCREWED ME " !!!!. IT DOESN"T FEEL LIKE MEGATRON , PERIOD !!!!!
     
  18. phreakybot

    phreakybot Well-Known Member

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    you would think that if there was going to be anything recognizable about these movie TF's, they would at least keep the heads the same as we remember.
     

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