Transformers Universe Modular Melee Weapons Project: Part 1

Not the most concise name I’ve ever given a project, I’ll admit… Anyway, regular readers might be aware that I, AddAltModeB, have a fondness for the defunct MMO Transformers Universe, which has manifested itself in the occasional bit of model-making: such as my custom Mismatch, and the Pandemic I’ve got on the way. Maybe I’ll call the project TUMMWP for short… but Tumm-wup sounds like something that might be forcibly taken to Isengard by the Uruk-hai.

They’re taking the tumm-wups to Isengard! Gard-ga-ga-ga-gard!

The axe in 3 Parts: 1: Head 2: Handle 3: Hilt

The axe in 3 Parts:
1: Head
2: Handle
3: Hilt

Anyway, whilst working on my previous axe-modelling project inspired by the weapons in the game,  I’d adopted a modular design to save on 3d-printing costs. Basically, the Head, Handle, Hilt could be printed separately. Separating the Head and Hilt makes the model take up much less “tray space”, making it cheaper to have it made (though it adds to costs in the polishing stage if you want to use polished materials). Separating the Base of the handle makes it easier to attach the axe to toy robots whose hands might be 5mm-diameter tubes — I learned this trick from models made by the esteemed fakebusker83, in particular the Galactic Dichotomizer, an axe that was my first Shapeways purchase.

I realized that this system lent itself to building a modular system of parts. Almost all the heavy, 2-handed melee weapons in the game follow this simple pattern. I could build each handle, head and hilt with relative ease, and so long as I used the same system of pegs to put all the pieces together, I’d have a huge number of options to use creating the finished items. Of course, the limits to minimum sizes in finished materials might create a few problems with some of the hilts, but I could adjust the geometry as necessary within these parameters…

The weapons in particular that best fit this pattern are these:

Weapons from Transformers Universe that tidily fit into this modelling scheme: 2 Autobot axes and a hammer, and a Decepticon axe and hammer.

Weapons from Transformers Universe that tidily fit into this modelling scheme: 2 Autobot axes and a hammer, and a Decepticon axe and hammer.

Note that I’ve already modelled the first Decepticon axe. It would take relatively little work to convert it to this new system.

It’s funny actually, because I don’t see axes and hammers as particularly Decepticon weapons: I’ve always thought of the ‘Cons as wielding purposefully designed weapons, and in terms of melee weapons that means well-balanced swords and spiked maces. Axes and hammers always seem to me to be more the domain of the Autobots: tools hastily converted to weapons to be used in self-defence. Perhaps my axe/spiked mace bias has it’s roots in the old G1 cartoon.

September 18, 1984: almost as old-school as it's possible to be.

In The Transformers episode 2, Optimus Prime wields a beaked axe, whilst Megatron brandished a spiked flail.

I’ve done a little bit of modelling towards the other parts for this project already. I’ll going to get my nose back to the digital grindstone, but I’ll keep AddAltMode readers informed of how it goes, and anything interesting I learn.

Another Axe-Head on it's way to completion.

Another Axe-Head on its way to completion.

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