10186 General Grievous vs Tonberry: Quasi-Review

I’ve been wanting to take photos of this set for a while, but due to his size and shape it’s hard. Recently I decided due to a combination of his bulk, fragility and wanting some of the parts that it’s recycling time, and that caused him to run out the door.


But I was prepared; I had a tonberry at the ready.


Undeterred Grievous attacks!


The fight rages on…


…and the General senses an advantage…


…but it was just a diversion and they resume their positions.


The tonberry notices the weak spot…


…and moves in to strike…


…but it’s skillfully dodged!


Both combatants pause…


…and Grievous realises he may have met his match…


…and that he might be defeated by a soft toy.


Go tonberry!

My plan to break this aside, I think this is a very under appreciated set. As I said earlier, the model is very hard to photograph due to the size and complex shape, and I do think that this is a model that’s best appreciated in person. Even so, it’s a pain to keep together; parts fall off all the time, it’s hard to put in different poses, hard to dust… and that’s why I decided that I’d give him one last hurrah! Taking these photos was hard; balance is always a huge problem with Grievous, and parts kept falling off which is not a good thing when you’re outside. (A few are noticeably missing; especially the sabers.)

But I think that TLG did a great job making a model like this with relatively few pieces and if I had more room and pieces I’d keep him together.

USB; Unlikely Special Bus?

I was reading news on ZDNet and I ran into this concept.

InfiniteUSB

It’s an idea by a designer, Gonglue Jiang, and I must confess that it annoys me. Why? Well because it’s one of the classic things that “Ideas” people do; think of a concept but don’t look into if it’ll work or not… and in this case it won’t.

Why? For one, USB doesn’t work like that. The connection requirements of USB is very similar to the way that Ethernet over twisted pair works in that you can’t just link from one cable to another, a device called a hub or a switch is needed to do that. The space inside the plugs illustrated are not big enough to contain much at all; even the wiring would be tight. One could say (as they often do) that he’s a design guy not an engineer, but surely he’s noticed that hubs/switches are needed.

But that’s not all. While the plug is too small to fit a hub/switch, it’s too big to be a plug. This design would block other ports and thus would waste ports while creating new ones. Also, the weight of all these plugs would add more stress to the socket than it’s probably designed for.

This is the problem with many “Sci-Fi” shows… and Sci-Fi LEGO MOCs. Priority 1; appearance and coolness, Priority 99999; functionality and believability.

Single-stage-to-orbit light fighters? Not a problem!
Infinite range? Why not?
Species from different planets interbreeding? Sure!
Maneuvering in space just the same as in an atmosphere? Yep!

The funny thing is one of the more believable Sci-Fi TV shows in (relatively) recent times was Firefly, a space western! Anyway, getting back to USB, what really annoys me the most though is he won an award for this. Maybe it’s attitudes like this that make “Sci-Fi” like Star Wars so popular?

Arealight Twi’lek Quasi Review

I recently bought some Arealight Twi’leks and I thought I’d share some quick photos of them!

My girls
They are very well moulded, have great colour matching, and the printing is excellent. The waisted torso is an especially cool concept that I wish TLG would do; if you’re going to print breasts and hips you might as well use a different piece! You can find more photos of these lovely ladies on the Arealight Flickr page.

Twi'lek torso bottom
Here you can see inside the torso. It’s much the same as the TLG parts, but with a hip. I’ve given it a few test squeezes and it seems strong.

Twi'lek torso back
What appears to be a moulding mark is visible at certain angles. It isn’t overly noticeable normally.

Rematch
“Two against one? No fair!”

As a bit of trivia, all of the Twi’leks are based off “real” characters.

White: Lyn Me, Max Rebo Band dancer in Return of the Jedi Special Edition.
Blue: Aayla Secura, Jedi Master.
Red: Darth Talon, Sith Apprentice in Star Wars: Legacy comics. (Never read so I don’t know any more.)
Orange: Ayy Vida, General background nobody in Attack of the Clones that someone seems to like a lot. (She’s supposed to be yellow and red.)
Green: Oola, The rancors lunch.

Also I bought some hair and a blank torso .

Hair inside
Looks very standard on the inside. It’s hard to see but there seems to be a “makers mark” on the inside of the inverted stud. A stylised “A” and “L”?

Tight fitting clothes!
Some of the hair pieces have a relatively obvious mould mark on the top. (You can see it in this photo.) It isn’t a major concern though, and I suspect it’ll improve with handling/fondling.

Even so, I highly recommend Arealight’s work.