Monday, November 17, 2014

The Many Sides of Fangar the Conspirator

My good buddy Steve is a master archivist of old toy sale ads.
Years ago, he found the one above (I assume in the Maryland area due to the city names at the bottom). Notice anything funny about it?
We've had quite the talks about the appearance of Fangar over the years in this ad. Does anyone out there reading this have a copy of the Ideal 1985 Line Art Catalog? I have scans of two pages from years and years ago - but only of the RBT pages. I need to see the Robo Force pages, for obvious reasons.
Thanks for letting me share this on the blog, Steve! 

Also, there's this:
Independent toy manufacturing is incredibly challenging from a financial standpoint, which is why anyone who loves the independent scene should be following the work of people working in 3-D printing. One notable artist working in the medium today is David White AKA Mechazone.
What he does with ABS plastic in his garage is truly the costs to manufacture in China increase, the idea that we may one day be able to have completely original, professionally produced figures made on printers here in the US is a tantalizing prospect. It's very close now - check out the link! I have two of David's figures and they need to be seen to be believed.
One of the only weaknesses of home 3D printing currently is a loss of detail only currently possible with more traditional molds - but if you get one of these figures in-hand, it feels like a standard ABS action figure.

So, the drawing above...I challenged David to do a redesign on Fangar the Conspirator (one of the unproduced second series Robo Force characters) in his style. I'm super happy with the results!
I'd love to see this figure in plastic someday.
To see more work from David, follow him on Instagram at username mechazone.

Monday, November 10, 2014

The human factor

Had Robo Force continued into its second year, we would have seen the introduction of multiple new characters, including the human who "designed and built the Robo Force" - Mark Fury, and his fellow freedom fighter Deena Strong.
Conceptually, was a line all about a planet of robots too strange for kids to really get into in 1984? Transformers and Gobots would tell us no. Adding the humans was just part of the story that Ideal would have is also worth noting that these would not have specifically been Earth humans, as the entire story takes place on planet Zeton. Unless Zeton would have turned out to have been an Earth colony or something along those lines...

So what do you think? Is Mark Fury an integral part of the Robo Force mythos, or something best left in 1985? Should Deena Strong finally see production as part of the Toyfinity range?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Art is an incredibly subjective thing.

What one person sees as art, another could see as blasphemy.
In this case, though, I was amused to find that the above drawing had been done by an artist named Doyle a few years back before Toyfinity owned the rights to Robo Force.
I had to order one for my own collection. Prints are still available from Nakatomi.

So, RoboCop being Man and Machine is closer to the gods of Machines because of his duality of existence?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014


You guys rock!
The order period for Classic Maxx is closed, and I am very pleased with the results.
The best seller was the Ultimate Maxx, followed by the Basic version. A bunch of people picked up blanks for customizing- I can't wait to see what you do with them!
We're hoping to see production samples in November sometime - as soon as I have pics, I will share them.

It's incredibly difficult to have a completely independent toy company in 2014.
Financing is tough. How do you connect with the fanbase that is out there when you can't see the product in person anywhere?
But you, the fans, have made me happy with your support.
YOU make it happen.
What's next? That's something I have been thinking about. I'd love to mix it up a bit - who'd like a nice Ultimate Cruel to battle your Robo Force? Is Hun-Dred who you are jonsing for more? Or how about a Volkruia Sentinel? How about a pink Robo Force kit? Let me know what you think in the comments.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Maxx Zero Pre-Orders end Saturday! New Glyos release Sunday over at Onell HQ!

Just a reminder - pre-orders for the Classic Editions of Maxx Zero (Ultimate, Basic, and Unpainted) end tomorrow around 11 pm EST.
The response has been great! I appreciate all of the support so far.
I have checked in with the factory and everything looks great for delivery in December at this time.
I can't wait to get some production samples to show you guys!

Don't forget there is a new Onell Design Glyos System release this Sunday, including this monstrosity:

He'd look great against your Robo Force!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Breaking down Ultimate Maxx, and a clarification to paint apps

 Hello there Toyfinity fans!

Thanks for the orders so far on these three editions!
I'm happy to see that people like the Ultimate Edition so much.
I wanted to give you, the fans, a little insight into the color selections on some of these parts.

 So, we have the above parts.
Classic Maxx has to have black arms - there was no doubt about that.
I had a lot of thoughts about what color the middle part of the arm should be.
The vintage figures were so simplistic in the amount of color they used that there was no clear guideline of where to break the colors from part to part.
I always saw the center arm piece as a darker gray than the main body gray, and when we introduced the highlight gray into the mix, I had a number of conversations with Matt about the color of that center arm piece. As it is now, it will match the other darker gray paint applications throughout the figure; I originally thought it should be an even darker gray than those grays, but after a series of test mechanicals, I don't think it would have looked right.

The shoulders were also an important piece to get right to me. He's more complex than vintage Maxx, where they just picked a half of the shoulder to our solution was a two-tone blue on the shoulder. What you should imagine when you look at this figure is that any dark blue spot is a plate over the internal workings of Maxx - places that he could be opened up and repaired. The lighter blue spots are where you can see his internal energies bleeding through...illuminated from the inside. This concept ties this Maxx more to his friend ZEM, and give us a really interesting potential future variant figure.

Lastly, I really wanted to paint those Hun-Dred claws. Maxx doesn't use them, but those apps will be neat if you make a Hun-Dred in Maxx colors.

 The only real thing I want to say about the hands is something which might not have been clear from day one. These hands are our version of the classic Maxx's "c-clip" hands. With these paint applications, you can finally see the intention - where the darker grey is, there would be a slot, and the black parts are Maxx's fingers which slide out so he can grip things better.

He can also shoot energy blasts out of the blue part on the outside of his hand. I have always loved that conceptually.

 I had a very specific vision of the inner chest parts.
At his core, Maxx has green energy. A very specific green energy....
Also, when you put on his outer chest, the black apps underneath that core will give him a nice little "belt"-looking section.

Ahh, the heads....
Enemy was easy. Maxx pretty easy.
The chest was the biggest tricky part. The vintage Maxx had the sticker, which made it easy to arrange the colors on a black background. But if we had made Maxx with a non-textured chest, he would have looked pretty crappy.
I must have looked at over twenty different potential chest paint applications before settling on this one. I feel it has the right amount of color (each one a callback to the vintage Maxx chest sticker), and gives Maxx a nice amount of color at his core.
It was also fun to finally be able to color the part on Maxx's back the way I actually see it.


The legs were a lot of fun. By the time we had determined the rest of Maxx, it was easy to carry the motifs of color throughout the rest of his body. I wanted to have the right amount of black on his lower half to help callback to the treads and the vintage suction cup.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Ultimate Maxx Zero Mechanicals

And here are the mechanicals for the Ultimate Maxx Zero!
I'll give my thoughts on what you see below later this week - business trip tomorrow and Wednesday!