I just wanted to post a quick update to respond to a couple folks and let y'all know I haven't abandoned this project. In truth, I've been busy getting "parts" refined / organized to use for this little "assembly-required" experiment. That's getting to be a grind, though, so I'm hoping to put together another character / get some color going / et cetera. I've also been sketching and coming up with some ideas in terms of how I want to proceed.
Thank you for saying that; part of my goal in these is to have the "parts re-use" make sense in the context of the world these characters inhabit, as well as developing my vision of that world. It also gave me an excuse to tweak Mekaneck's helmet in a little less awkward a direction ...
Originally Posted by Charlie Brown
That's fair; hopefully they'll grow on you a little bit as time goes on, but if not, I'm sure I'll change things up again eventually.
Originally Posted by Niki
Here's my version of Prince Randor. This is (obviously, I think) based on the MYP design for him as Captain Randor. I used this design for the "Prince Randor" version because it was easy to tie into Miro (by tweaking the colors) and Keldor (with the kilt / loincloth bit) and because, in my canon, I'm going to have his "Captain Randor" look more closely resemble some of his DC Comics looks.
At this stage, he is still living in Dyperia with King Miro and his brothers Stefan and Keldor. I think their birth-order would be Keldor > Randor > Stefan. Keldor gets passed over for the throne of Dyperia (because racism, I guess), Randor ends up getting selected by the Council of Elders to rule Eternos (and so abdicates the Dyperian throne), leaving Stefan to unexpectedly rule Dyperia as his father's heir. This retains the reason for Keldor's animosity toward Randor as well as incorporating Stefan into the more modern mythos.
I feel like there are still a few tweaks to be made in terms of what colors go where, but he's pretty close I think. Anyway, let me know what you think / what suggestions you might have, if you feel so inclined.
So, something a little different from me ... I wanted to see if I could figure out how I'd do Battle Cat in a style that would mesh well with my other MotU characters. I haven't drawn a whole lot of non-humanoid creatures in the last several years, so it's taking a bit to get comfortable with the anatomy.
The green version was my first sketch to get the concept started, the white one is more pieced together ... and looks it (even disregarding the jacked up front shoulder). Obviously the white one has a more accurate tiger head, but the green one seems to have more personality. I feel like the forelegs are the weakest point here ... suggestions welcome. I'm not necessarily striving for 100% accuracy in terms of feline anatomy, but I want something passably close that also incorporates the more stylized anatomy of my humanoid figures ... I think I would also like to keep a relatively face-forward view so if I put Battle Cat and He-Man together in the same shot, they look somewhat more natural.
Tried again ... this seems to be better, but I'm not sure it's quite there yet. I do plan to actually draw a new head for Panthor, but I figured I'd give my Battle-Cat test run a quick recolor just for variety's sake.
I think I've found what I was after ... adjusted the leg positions, elongated the body, tilted the neck forward more ... he looks a little less timid now than my prior take. As always, feedback, questions, and suggestions are welcome.
Another take on my version of Prince Randor. I gave him a younger-looking / beardless face and tweaked the colors to more closely match the original Captain Randor design ... I'm not sure he's quite there yet, but I think he's closer. I wanted to cut that darker blue-gray color from the Captain Randor design altogether, but it works better than the teal color from my first version ...
So, I feel like I found the route I want to take with Battle Cat and Panthor in terms of style / pose / et cetera.
In terms of canon, the term "battle-cat" would be similar to "war-horse": it would be a term used to describe a type of steed rather than a specific individual. I take this idea primarily from the vintage box art, on which Skeletor and Beast Man are both depicted riding cats identical to He-Man's. It's further supported by the existence of Panthor and (Illumina's cat) Sleetah.
I choose to imagine that the battle-cats are bred and trained largely by the Qadians. They've been selectively bred over the generations for size and intelligence (the cats cannot speak, however - no talking Cringer in my backyard). This has led to the wide variety in coloration and, to some degree, temperament in various battle-cat breeds. I would imagine breed specifics would vary by region / breeder / what have you (i.e. a variety with dark violet fur in the Dark Hemisphere, a white variety with perhaps thicker fur in the Ice Mountains, et cetera).
Fun Fact: I recently read that ligers (offspring of a male lion and female tiger) are, on average, larger than either lions or tigers, while tigons (offspring of a male tiger and female lion) are typically not. I haven't done any extensive research to verify the truth of this, but the reasoning behind it made sense at the time.
Given the idea of "battle-cat" as a more generic term, I should perhaps have named my Battle Cat picture as follows:
but i did not.
In my imagination, and in an effort to combine various existing canons, Adam was abducted as an infant at the same time as Adora, however, only Adora was spirited off to Despondos / Etheria. The infant Adam was lost during the pursuit and recovered by the inhabitants of a remote Qadian village. He grew up there under the distant-but-watchful eye of the Sorceress, raised as a common warrior (whose Qadian name translated to "He-Man") by Qadian foster-parents. During his youth, he encountered the cub he would ironically name Cringer, who would go on to become his steadfast companion (the battle-cats in this region would be of the green tiger variety). As they grew, they would become the champions of their village and the nearby region, but would eventually leave as indicated in the vintage mini-comic, "He-Man and the Power Sword." With the Sorceress' guidance, He-Man would make his way (eventually) to the city-state of Eternos, be reunited with his parents, and assume his place as Prince and heir.
Anyway, wordy as always, hopefully you enjoy.
Finished versions of my "Assembly Required" Stratos and Beast Man.
I stayed pretty true to their classic designs, but with slightly elongated arms and a simian "thumb" on each foot. I did take some artistic license with Stratos' wings, since I'm free from the constraints of making an actual action-figure work.