Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Production gears up: Project-R

It doesn't look like much.  Then again, at the first-steps stages, not much looks like much at all.    I am working from the graphics for the MWO version of the Archer, and I expect that I'll keep fairly close to that in a lot of ways.  There are some very distinctive lines to the Archer, and those I have to keep.  I like the look of the arms on the MWO design.  Truth be told, there are a lot of the designs from MWO that I prefer over the TRO drawings.  I suspect that part of it comes from the dynamics of the online game vs the creativity of just drawing pictures. 

I guess the engineer brain in me just balks at many of the TRO drawings.  They just look "wrong."   The Hatchetman, for instance.  The legs are just too spindly for a machine designed for combat to begin with, and even moreso as the H is supposed to close into melee.  The standard expectation for a Battlemech in melee is the kick, and considering the damage done through a kick, that would be one of the more heavily armored locations. I get that is one of the design flaws, but there is 'not armored enough' and then there is 'are you kidding me, how do those work at all?'.    I intentionally added a bit of beefier armor to the mech I built, and overall, it still had a spindly look compared to the heavier mechs.  It makes sense, with the Hatcheman being a 50 ton vs the Victor's 70. 

In MWO, the designers appear to take physics and machine dynamics into consideration as they design.  I think they underestimate the size of the small mechs, but the mediums and up seem to fit close to my mind.   Mixing the MWO looks with TRO classic stylings is a nice middle ground for a traditionalist like me.

The Archer is going to follow many of the stylings of the MWO look, because it does keep those distinctive lines intact.  I plan to do the -2W variant with LRM-20s and SRM-4 launchers.   As I think of the design, I'm looking at a design that puts 2 launcher covers on the shoulders.. The traditional long covers that lift up to reveal the LRM-20s, and on the front angle, a smaller box-like cover that drops down to reveal the SRM-4's.  Again, from a design standpoint, large covers are kinda silly, so I have to think if I'd prefer to do Mad-Dog-like hatches that cover each tube individually.   That would be logical from an engineer's perspective, but from the "it looks like the Archer" perspective, it diverts from tradition.  

I have time, I'm only on the foot.   You know, I realized just now that I always start with the foot.  I did the same with the HCT and the same with the Atlas I designed.  I start with the size of the foot and build up from there.   Am I the only one that does that? 

So, looking at the development, I'm thinking how to do this.  Once I have the foot designed and finished, I'll do the shin then thigh.  For consistency, I'm planning to make them symmetrical, so I can just cast foot/shin/thigh parts so I don't have to build them to match precisely.  : )

Anyway.. We're off. 


No comments: