Sunday, 10 June 2018

Robot Factory 1 - the Leonardo Frame

There are many dangers in the wasteland, ranging from bandits and wild dogs to more obscure threats like gruntlings and furtive rhomboids. But even hardened traders fear the robots that stalk the deep deserts. Over recent years, more and more of them have been sighted, varying in size and shape as if someone was trying out different designs.

The truth is much more sinister. Deep below Mount Tangent, in a half-ruined industrial complex built by the first settlers, an inhuman intelligence is stirring. It has reactivated the robot-construction facility to slowly create an army that will one day march out and conquer the world. Its true designation is long-forgotten, but it calls itself Mechatep, of the Dynasty of Pskainet.


For a while, I've thought that it would be cool to build a decrepit factory for Necromunda. And not just any factory - one making robots. Leaving aside the sinister nature of the abandoned - but possibly still active - body parts, you could have loads of interesting machines to hide behind and even a scenario where the factory churns out defence bots while the two sides battle around them.

Because I've not got the space for one massive terrain piece, I thought the best idea would be to make a few different machines, all to do with robot construction. I was inspired by the very similar machines in Westworld (top) and Fallout 4 (bottom), both reminiscent of Leonardo da Vinci's Vitruvian Man drawing:

For the main frame, where the robot would be assembled, I used two pieces left over from Tau hover-tanks. They were cut from the top of the tanks, where the turret plugs in, and I've had them lying around for about a decade. Never throw anything away, as they say. With a bit of green stuff and some filing, I put them together.

Then I needed a base and something to hold the frame onto it. For this, I ordered some resin turret legs from Ramshackle Games. They came in a pack of five - I can use the others for something later.

 The base was an old sculpted base from a Dust Tactics model. It had bolts around the edges and a metal textured feel, and was therefore perfect for this project. The leg went onto the base, with some bits of tubing to support it at the bottom:

And then the frame was stuck to the arm. I painted it all in a suitable light-industrial blue, and added a robot skeleton made from one of Warlord's Terminator models. It's not a fantastic miniature, but it does the job.

As a final touch, I considered adding some of TT Combat's excellent computer panels to the base, to control the machinery. But then I noticed that a console, also from TT Combat, fitted perfectly on the base and matched the colour scheme. So I decided to use that instead. I've not glued it on, but I think it works really well.

So there it is! I wonder if it needs some mechanical arms, in case the robot requires a bit of emergency spot-welding. I'll be adding some of GW's nice Ryza pattern ruins as the factory walls, and perhaps repainting some older scenery I made a while ago. For now, I think it's a decent start.

1 comment:

Mr Papafakis said...

I like the concept Toby, and the progress is looking great so far. I agree, the control panel helps a lot....too much open space with just the base.

I've thought about running a game like that before, but with RT robots. You know, the dumb ones that go haywire and can end up attacking your own side when the malfunction.

Great stuff mate :)