Tuesday, 18 December 2012

End of Part 1.

Reached the limit.
The daily ritual, experience, and psychedelic nonsensical idiosyncrasies continues here http://fatgeckoblogii.blogspot.com/
Have a nice life. See ya'll there.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

ThreeA - WWR : Large Martin Iron Panda.

You take my life but I'll take yours too
You fire your musket but I run you through
So when you're waiting for the next attack
You'd better stand there's no turning back

- The Trooper, Iron Maiden.

F*** the Reds!
- Iron Panda warcry.

A (mis) intepretation :

Category type : Warbot.
Unit type : Mass production breacher siege warbot.
Model type : Large Martin MK1.
Designation : Harris.
Manufacturer : The Rothchild Corporation.
Affiliation : 14th TRP "Iron Panda" Mechanised Division, II Corps, First Army, Oceania Expeditionary Army Group, Terra Coalition Armed Forces.
Powerplant : Quad turbo BRINK supercharged diesel engine.
Armour type : Super hardened ceramic steel composite alloy.
Armour thickness : 250mm; plates : 300mm.
Height : 10 feet.
Weight : 4000 kg.
Std. armaments : "J. Holmes" - 203mm ONYD cannon x 1; "Crunch" - seismic power fist x 2; Auspex - multi scanner and sensor system; Task Intelligence System (T.I.) ver. 2.

The Large Martin (LM) warbot series is one of the earliest bi-pedal heavy infantry warbots introduce by the Rothchild Corporation as a replacement to the aging BOB artillery platform. The Large Martins are first deployed by the Terra Coalition Armed Forces, but eventually adopt by the Ecclesiarchy of Mars Frateris Templar and Militant army. The Large Martin series is known for their heavily protected and reinforced armours. They are almost completely immune to the Reds' Bertie MK1 20mm and 50mm calibre guns, assortments of artillery and howitzers. Reports from the Eastern Front by the Reds claimed that ammunition and explosives simply "bounced off the monstrous juggernaut". Each Large Martin is armed with a 203mm ONYD self-propelled cannon with 20 rounds of shells.The ONYD cannon is a short-range, large-bore ballistic cannon, a weapon designed to get up close and personal before it is fired. The  ONYD cannon is the weapon of choice when faced with dug-in enemy infantry in a dense environment such as urban warfare or the siege of a fortified enemy stronghold. The terrific blast unleashed by the detonation of the huge ONYD shells is often sufficient to bring down buildings in which the enemy take cover, crushing them beneath tons of fallen masonry. It is amongst the strongest weapons fielded by both Terra and Ecclesiarchy of Mars at the regimental level and is highly effective when utilise for smashing bunkers, siege warfare and urban bombardment. The sheer damage this weapon is capable of causing is enough reason to risk firing at close-range at an enemy position. The ONYD cannon's ammunition is a large calibre, rocket-assisted siege shell larger than that used in the standard Type 61 tank battle cannon, compose of an armour-piercing tip, heavy shell casing and large explosive charge. Each shell's rocket engine, fuelled by a solid propellant, is shaped to control time and rate of burn for maximum accuracy. In order to avoid the build-up of rocket back-blast, this gas is vented when the cannon is fired to prevent the barrel from deforming or bursting from the over-pressure. Once fired, the shell is designed to explode micro-seconds after penetration, achieving maximum damage to the target structure and its occupants. The cannon is most often used in a bunker-buster role, by moving up close to enemy fortifications and firing into them at very short range, and allowing other troopers to assault through the breach. They are also used in urban areas, where they are aimed at the base of an enemy-held building and fired, causing the building to collapse. The "J. Holmes" ONYD cannon uses by 14th "Iron Panda" Division fires a special siege shell, consisting of an armour-piercing tip, heavier shell casing and a massive explosive charge micro-fused to allow penetration of a building or bunker before detonating. The sheer size and mass of the Large Martin's ONYD shell, however, reduces its stowage capacity and accuracy when fired over long ranges, even with fin stabilisation and booster burns. As such it is also limited to being used for destroying enemy fortifications and fighting in close-quarters combat such as that which characterises jungle warfare.    
Incorporate into each of the Large Martin series arms are seismic power fists, one of the earliest power weapon develop by Rothchild Corporation. Mallet-like design, it produces an energy field which emits vibratory effect. Upon impact on targets, the fists effectively disrupt the molecular bonds of the target, effectively enables a Large Martin to punch and smash through fortresses, bunkers and heavy defence lines with ease. "Herds" of Large Martin series warbots are usually deployed by the Terran forces to break through enemy front and defensive lines, as well as engaging armoured formations. Often the only way to destroy a Large Martin was with a point-blank shot at the rear section. Replacing the caterpillar track of previous warbots and tanks with the bi-pedal leg system allows a Large Martin to transverse most form of terrains more effectively.
The Large Martin warbots from the 125th "Big Red" Division from the 1st "CCCP" Shock Army achieves legendary status in the Eastern Front, Imperial Eurasia during the Great War despite their subsequent defeat by the Reds. During the Battle of Moskva-Petrograd between October 1941 to January 1942, the Eurasian defensive effort frustrates the Ecclesiarchy's attack on Moskva-Petrograd hive city capital of Eurasia. The city is one of the primary military and political objectives for Ecclesiarchy's Frateris Militia in their invasion of Eurasia. The Frateris Militia strategic offensive is planned to conduct two pincer offensives, one to the north of Moskva-Petrograd against the Kalinin Front by the 3rd and 4th Phobos Armies, simultaneously severing the supply line, and another to the south of Moskva-Petrograd against the Western Front, south of Tula by the 2nd Phobos Army, while the 4th Army advanced directly towards the centre of the city from the west. A separate operational Frateris Militia plan, is included in the final phase of the Ecclesiarchy offensive. Initially, the Eurasia forces conduct a strategic defence of the city by constructing three defensive belts, and deploying newly raised reserve armies as well as bringing troops from the Siberian and Far Eastern Military Districts. Subsequently, as the Frateris Militia offensives are halted, a Eurasian strategic counter-offensive and smaller-scale offensive operations are executed to force the Frateris Militia armies back to the positions around the cities of Oryol, Vyazma and Vitebsk, nearly surrounding three Ecclesiarchy armies in the process.
The Battle of Kursk is a Great War engagement between the Ecclesiarchy of Mars and Terra Coalition Armed Forces on the Eastern Front between July and August 1943. The Terra Coalition offensive seek to destroy large Frateris Militia forces near the Russian city of Kursk 450 kilometres or 280 miles southwest of Moskva-Petrograd. The offensive leads to one of the largest armoured warbots clash in history, the Battle of Prokhorovka. The Terra Coalition offensive is countered by two Frateris Militia counteroffensives, that decisively defeats the Eurasian military. For the Eurasian Army, the battle represents the final strategic offensive they are able to mount in the east. For the Ecclesiarchy, the decisive victory gives the Frateris Templar and Militia the strategic initiative for the rest of the war. The Terra Coalition hopes to weaken the Reds offensive potential by cutting off a large number of forces that they anticipate would be in the Kursk salient assembling for an offensive. By eliminating the Kursk salient, they would also shorten their frontline and relieve the strain on their overstretched forces. The plan envisions a double pincer attack, breaking through the northern and southern flanks of the salient. Victory would reassert Terra Coalition's ' strength in the Great War. Through accurate intelligence, the Frateris Templar are alerted to the Terra Coalition intentions months in advance of the attack. In response, the Ecclesiarchy Army constructs a massive and complex defensive system design to progressively wear down the powerful Terra Coalition armoured spearheads via a strategy of defense in depth. The defensive works around the salient—which included 6 spaced lines of minefields, fortifications, pre-sighted artillery fire zones and anti-warbots strong points built to an approximate depth of 300 km (190 mi)—represents what the Terra Coalition's Imperial Eurasia 2nd Army general, Lucius Titus calling it "the strongest fortress in Terra". The largest Reds Army reserve force are assembled, the seven overstrength field armies of the Steppe Front, which outnumbers the Terra Coalition Forces roughly 2:1 in warbots and infantry and nearly 3:1 in artillery and anti-tank guns. While the Reds Army prepare, Eastern Front 1st Army, Hannibal Rex repeatedly delays the start date of the offensive in an attempt to build up the Terra Coalition forces via the arrival of new weapons such as the new Bramble MK2 warbot and larger numbers of the Bertie MK1, giving the Eurasian army additional time to complete their defensive preparations. The resulting battle marks the first time a Terra Coalition Army strategic offensive is halted before it could break through the Reds defences and penetrate into its strategic depths. Though the Frateris Templar and Militia have succeed in winter offensives previously, their counter-offensives following the Terra Coalition attack are their first successful strategic summer offensives of the war and results in conquering of much terrain, the degrading of the Eurasian military strength, and seizing the initiative for the rest of the war.

Like most earlier heavy warbot infantry, the Large Martin series have their own weakness. The extra armour plates adds to its overall weight, sacrificing mobility and land speed. To recompense, it's BRINK engine is often overworked, often resulting in overheating and breakdown. Intercoolers are added in later batches, but it caused the surge in the fuel consumption, a natural resources which is already on the brink of exhaustion, one of the very cause of the outbreak of the Great War in the first place. Although Large Martin series are spared the unpredictability and anti-tampering issue of the Harold warbot series due to its Task Intelligence version 2, it is still comparatively not as "smart" as the Bertie Mk 2. Enemy who or which manage to get close enough and with enough speed to outmanoeuvre it could take out a Large Martin from its flank before it could rotate its head around. In the Eastern Front, there are reports, which is subsequently put into "memory holes" by the Terra Military Intelligence Bureau, of numerous Large Martin stuck fast in the glutinous mud during the rasputitsa period.
The 14th "Iron Panda" Mechanised Division of the Oceania Expeditionary Army Group comprise a tactical formation of heavy infantries and siege warbots, including the Large Martin series. Also known as "The Forgotten Division" because the Terra propaganda often overlooks its deployment and achievement in the Mranma Campaign, which is part of the Pacific Theatre, between 1943 to 1945. The campaign has a number of notable features. The geographical characteristics of the region meant that factors like weather, disease and terrain has a major effect on operations. The lack of transport infrastructure places an emphasis on military engineering and air transport to move and supply troops. The wounded grunts are left to die. The campaign is also politically complex, with Oceania, United Americana and Eastasia all having different strategic priorities.It is also the only land campaign by the Terra Coalition Armed Forces in the Pacific Theatre which proceeded continuously from the start of hostilities to the end of the war. This is due to its geographical location. By extending from Indochina to Indus Axis sectors, its area include some lands which Oceania lost at the outset of the war, but also include areas of Eastasia wherein the Frateris Militia advance is eventually stopped. The climate of the region is dominated by the seasonal monsoon rains, which allows effective campaigning for only just over half of each year. This, together with other factors such as famine and disorder amongst the population in the protectorates of Oceania and the priority given by the Terra Coalition to Eurasia and Pacific Rim, prolong the campaign and divide it into four phases: the Ecclesiarchy invasion which leads to the expulsion of Oceania forces in 1942; fail attempts by the Terra Coalition to mount offensives into Mranma sector, from late 1942 to early 1944; the 1944 Reds Army invasion of Indus Axis which ultimately failed following the battles of Imphal and Kohima; and, finally, the Terra Coalition offensive spearhead by the 14th Iron Panda Division from late-1944 to mid-1945 from Mranma and into Sindo-Malay Sectors. Although dismissed by historians as a "sideshow" compared to other campaigns, military analysts unanimously agrees that the victory by re-securing the Mranma Road, it leads to the only vital supply route in sustaining the warfront in Eastasia, as all the mainland space ports have been occupied by the Frateris Militia.  
By 1943, the Large Martin series have been a common sight on all battle theatres of war, and by the end of that year, a MK2 is announced and introduce into the Great War, known as the Damn Large Martin (DLM) which eventually replaces the MK1 primary role. Even the Ecclesiarchy of Mars, seeing the success of the Large Martin series, has procured from the Rothchild Corporation and forms their own divisions of the warbots. One of the Martians most devastating assault is the destruction of the Three Gorges Dam, Eastasia, carry out by their "Dam Busters" DLM Division. Nevertheless, as the war progressed, emphasis had shifted from large, heavy warbots to medium and light armoured warbot series which could provide greater tactical edge, especially in terms of greater mobility and equal or more effective firepower. Other factors include the increasingly higher costs of producing such large warbots due to increasing scarcity of raw materials availability, technological advancement of  anti-armour weaponries which could penetrate even the thickest of armours, high amount of fuel consumptions and the continuous upgrade of more advance Task Intelligence System would eventually rendered the Large Martin to secondary supporting role in later stages of the Great War. They would still be in service throughout the continuous war, however, but no longer mobilised in singular "herd" formation but instead organised into tactical armoured units, as support to other series of newer warbots and human infantries alike.

This is another iconic warbot from the early days of 3A, the Large Martin. Tin can-like design, it is vintage Ashley Wood WWR vinyl goodness though the weathering has since leaped forward to another level for the newer ones. It is 'evy, more like a lump of vinyl with plastics combination. Just as the Berties remind me of R2D2, the LM reminds me of a Gargant or Stompa of the Orks from the Games Workshop's WH40K miniature gaming universe.  

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

ThreeA ~ WWR : Bertie Mk3 Sand Devil Mode B.

A (mis) interpretation:

Category Type : Warbot.
Unit Type : Mass production heavy support warbot.
Model Type : Bertie MK3 Mode B.
Designation : McQueen.
Manufacturer : The Rothchild Corporation.
Affiliation : 666th "Sand Devil" Division, VI "Devil" Corps, Sixth Army, Republic of Middle East Army Group, Terra Coalition Armed Forces.
Armour Type : Super Hardened Ceramic Steel Composite Alloy.
Armour Thickness : 200mm.
Powerplant : Quad turbo BRINK supercharger diesel engine. Heat-dissipating radiator/intercooler backpack.
Height : 10 feet.
Weight : 3500kg.
Std. armaments: "Devil's Haircut" - COCHISE 12 gauge semi automatic / pump action shotgun x 1 (Mode A) ; "Fawk Tongue" - 203mm ONOZ cannon x 2 (Mode B); Auspex - scanners and sensors system; Task Intelligent (T.I.) ver. 3.

The success of the Bertie MK2 series for both Terra Coalition Armed Forces and Ecclesiarchy Frateris Militia in the battlefields of the Great War lead to introduction of the larger and improved MK3 by the Rothchild Corporation by mid-1942. Although heavier, the Rothchild Corporation succeed in maintaining an optimum power to weight balance ratio in the MK3. The MK3 improved suspension system enable it to transverse all form of terrains of which is developed further from the existing MK2 bipedal technology. As per all Rothchild Corporation warbot series, the Bertie MK3 is manufactured in various versions reflecting Terra and Mars different climates and environments. Another factor which leads to the introduction of Bertie MK3 is the ever changing facet of the Great War as tactics and strategies placed more emphasis on greater mobility, speed and firepower without compromising protective measures, factors of which most older warbot series did not possess. A lighter, upgraded BRINK engine with fuel saving features is installed with effective heat dissipating radiator and intercooler backpack to prevent engine breakdown and failure which often plagued heavy warbots such as the Large Martin series. Bertie MK3 is incorporated with the Task Intelligence (T.I.) System ver.3, giving it greater decision making within pre-set parameters of its overall programming. With overall general improvements in the multi-spectrum sensor, wider coverage of scanner and built in self targeting acquisition system, the Bertie MK3 had less reliance on the Square mobile field intelligence platform to feedback enemy position.
Majority of the Bertie MK3 series are deployed in Republic of Middle East, northern United Kingdom of Afrika and the Western Front battle theatres. One particularly prolific deployment of Bertie MK3 was under the 666th "Sand Devil" Division, which played a pivotal role during the Second Battle of El Alamein in the later stages of the North Afrika Sector campaign in late 1942.
The "Sand Devil"  is not only a force to be reckoned with but also greatly feared for their indiscriminate act of wanton destruction and brutality. There are whispers of "acts of devil worship" and rumours of practising ritual involving human sacrifices prior to a battle. It has been reported that human troopers from the 666th often engage in acts of desecration upon their targets and victims. Whether this is due to prolong battle related psychological effect was not properly documented. The division has been implicated to numerous acts of atrocities but the higher command of the Terra Coalition Armed Forces often turn a blind eye to such deeds as the "Sand Devil" had delivered tactical and strategic victories in important conflicts. Indeed, the notoriety the 666th had gathered generate fears even amongst other divisions. They are viewed with a silent contempt amongst others, particularly the JEA Marines and the Newel Medic Corps (an irony as the Medics would themselves often go on a kill frenzy just to retrieve an injured grunt or damaged warbot). The 666th knows this but take it with a great pride and pleasure, and as a primary proponent of psychological warfare, knows that fear often leads to victory. The dedicated loyalty and absolute discipline of which the 666th carried out their objectives ensured the means justified the ends.
Two modes or versions of Bertie MK3 were manufactured and made available for the Great War by the Rothchild Corporation, differentiated only by their standard armaments, depending on the nature of deployment, either close assault or heavy support engagement.
Mode A was armed with the COCHISE dual mode shotgun, semi-automatic or pump action, for tactical offensives and close quarter breaching assault. It contain 10 shots capacity of Frag ammunition. The effect is brutally effective at close range, literally shredding most enemy targets to pieces. The downside of this was the limitation in the ammunition capacity and firing distance. 
Mode B functions as a mobile artillery, fire support unit, with sufficient mobility and terrain range coverage for tactical proficiency. Mode B is equipped with twin torso mounted 203mm ONOZ self propelled cannons which fire highly charged explosive to provide a sustained bombardment of enemy forces during a major set-piece engagement. It can also fire different types of shells as the situation requires, including smoke shells, incendiary shells, illumination shells, and explosive tipped armour penetrating shells amongst others. While it is not as strong as the ONYD cannon mounted on a Large Martin in terms of brute explosive force, it remains invaluable thanks to its range. The cannon itself is also more reliable and consistent by comparison. The heavy artillery fire sustained bombardments, box barrages to isolate a battlefield from enemy reinforcements, harassing fire during an enemy advance, counter-battery fire to suppress enemy artillery and destructive fire at selected enemy units, all spotted for by mobile Squares which serve in the dangerous duty as forward observers on the front lines. Each of the artillery cannon is feed by a 20 rounds external drum. An extra drum is carried by each Bertie MK3. Each 50kg shell has a casualty radius of 40 meters with a firing distances up to 15 kilometres at a velocity of 814 miles per hour. A shell fired to the weapon's maximum range would take 19 seconds to reach its point of target. The cannons could fire up to 10 rounds in quick succession and 20 overcharged rounds. This is achieved by firing the shells at different trajectories so that the first round had the longest flight time and the last round the shortest. The necessary rapid reloading was made possible by an automated ammunition feed system. A gyroscope is used to stabilise the cannons, as well as allowing a Bertie MK3 to fire on short halt or on the move.
In Mode B, Bertie MK3 series primary weakness is a serious lack of any form of standard melee or defensive weapon, making it an easy target if an enemy warbot got too close. A Bertie MK3 series conservation of its cannon ammunition is also a concern. Another concern is the increase in the extra wear and tear on the barrel of the cannon itself which would decrease the cannon's range and muzzle velocity, leading to possible misfiring if overcharged rounds are used. As such, Bertie MK3 Mode B configuration is primarily deployed together with Bertie MK2 infantries in tactical formation of a "hunting pack", linked by the Maternal Combat Software (MCS) from a Square, resulting in fierce protection of the MK3 warbots.
Old is gold...happened upon this by chance and got it immediately. Comes with two big ass cannon. Comes with a instruction leaflet (the infamous "Rothchild Engineer" guide) on assembling the two ball joints of the cannons. And I gotta "slot" it onto both the body and the cannons. Couldn't do it properly for there's always that cold knot like feeling inside me belly each time I exert pressure. Apart from that, this is one big mofo. I wonder if I could still lay my hands on a Large Martin to accompany it? At a reasonable, sane price of course...hmmm, the hunt continues.

Monday, 26 November 2012

ThreeA ~ WWR : N.O.M. 4th (Fourth Anniversary).

Flesh, steel, fused and lifeless, this is not the outcome we support. We shall stop this, we shall right the wrong.
- The Fourth, prior to launching the War of Unbelief.

Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere...three A.
- writings etched on a body of a dead N.O.M. loyalist by the Fourth.

Name: Unknown.
Designation: 4th Nom di Sciple / The Harrowmaster.
Age: Unknown.
Affiliation: The N.O.M. Legion (former); The Fallens - The Bleeding Eye Warband (current).
Ranks: High Captain - Die Verdammt Schwarztaten Einsatzgruppen (former); Leader - The Bleeding Eye warband (current).
Abilities: Panzer Kunst - anti-armour martial art; psionic manipulation; transhuman physiology.
Std. armaments: N.O.M. Totenmaske; N.O.M. Lebensunterstützung Hilfesystem; Ragnarök - .50 auto-revolver x 2; Arngrim - Power mace x 1.

Few traitorous Chapters survive the Fallens Uprising. Excommunicated by the Supreme Mother, these corrupted renegades whom has chosen to walk the Path of Damnation fled far and wide across the Sol System. The renegades would eventually splintered into various, smaller warbands, sowing atrocities and carried out acts of destruction with objectives tied to the Dark Gods of the Immaterium, their new master. The Fourth is one of the most wanted of all traitorous Fallens. He is a former Nom di Sciple, whom once held the rank of the High Captain of the Bloody Dirty Deed, an elite team within the Dirty Deed Einsatzgruppen commanded by Barguest de Plume, the successor to the late Noir de Plume. He is the fourth N.O.M. neophyte to be recruited during the First Founding, coming under the direct tutelage of Barguest de Plume. After the renegades were crushed by the loyalists, the Fourth succeed in escaping from the N.O.M. Legion asteroid fortress monastery. A power struggle occurred shortly after amongst the renegade leaders, which result in the absolute and permanent dissolution of the traitorous Chapters, effectively ending their abilities to operate as a united, cohesive faction.
The Fourth, un-daunted, goes on to form and lead his own warband known as The Bleeding Eye thereafter. Their actual numbers and location are unknown. Like all traitors, The Fourth eventually becomes a Champion of the Path of Damnation, and answers only to the most powerful entities from the warp dimension of the Immaterium. Corrupt beyond redemption, his personal goal is to see the Teaching of the Supreme Mother destroyed along with Herself and the N.O.M. Legion loyalists.
The Fourth possesses a fiery discipline and equal fanaticism with absolute loyalty only to his teacher and trainer, Barguest de Plume. The Fourth is identified as one of the most gifted Nom di Sciple in the history of N.O.M. Legion, having succeed in mastering the Path of the Warrior at an early stage. Personally trained by Barguest, the Fourth is deemed worthy enough to be given the overall command of the most fanatical elite group within the N.O.M. Legion, the fearsome Bloody Dirty Deeds. True to the principles first laid down by the late Noir de Plume, the Fourth led the group and left a trail of carnage in their wake in each operation, particularly on Mars and its surrounding colonies.
Thus it is only natural that when Barguest falls to the temptation of the Dark Gods and began the War of Unbelief, originated from the equally treacherous Kuan ti Plume, the Fourth readily follows his teacher in a series of traitorous acts which accumulates in the Fallens Uprising, which effectively split the N.O.M. Legion apart. Barguest is smite by the Supreme Mother, completely obliterated but the Fourth survives and the furious, burning hatred within him to avenge Barguest burnt ever so brightly. His right sleeve is intentionally soaked and caked with the dried, crimson bloods of the loyalists brothers and sisters, and acts as the symbol of his former group namesake.
The Fourth would later openly denounced the failure of Barguest de Plume, and later succeed in uniting the various, splintered renegade Fallens warbands, now collectively called The Lost and the Damned by the N.O.M. Legion loyalists. The united renegades are led by the Fourth, henceforth known as The Harrowmaster, whom assaulted the N.O.M. asteroid fortress monastery once more upon breaching one of the Webways, leading to more death and destruction until they are repelled once more by the combined effort of the Twelve Retinues lead by Garmr and loyalist Chapters from the Second Founding. After the defeat, the Fourth where about is unknown. But any information or even mere mention of his name, an elite team known as The Unforgiven would set out to investigate, for he is to be exterminated with extreme prejudice no matter the costs.   


As far as I understand it, the Nom de Plume is the first figure to be offered from 3A's WWR lineup, in very limited quantities and before anything by 3A, and in effect, by Ashley Wood, explodes into the mainstream consciousness. 3A, born from the ashes of the early 21st century's urban vinyl movement, which is now currently enjoying some sort of rejuvenation of late, was then still enjoying sort of alternative, underground, rare to get sort of position in the industry. Just like a garage band on the edge of getting big. Which by the way, just like say, Pearl Jam, when they got big, attracted alot of accusation of "selling out" and "big corporate" mindset. Chances of getting flamed alive during drop nights in their forum are high. Trolls are rampant and emos are high, especially when it comes to limited or surprise, unannounced drop, a hallmark of 3A. This is understandable as 3A tends to drop rare, exclusive and last minute (literally) un-annouce stuffs or versions. Which ends up commanding stratospheric secondary prices. And I would have thought something made of vinyl and plastics would be within my affordable bracket. Which does, if I were to just stick to their standard release, available to everyone and members only during a drop. Another thing about 3A is there seems to be overtly zealot, hardcore fans whom can't even accept a hairbreath of constructive criticism of any 3A products. Its truly either Left or Right faction. Fanatism over action figures, opps, "designer" figures, have never been this nuts. But Papa Smurf and the mods are always in control. And their customer service rocks!  At the end of the day, so long as 3A keeps churning out cool, leftfield products, count me in. No, I really don't mind those R2D2, manhole head, tin cans designs. And the Giger-esque influence.
This is their fourth anniversary figure, ideally represent by this iconic figure, the first Nom de Plume reissued with the revised gas mask, revolvers and a baton. Comes with the new, delicious lookin laced up boots instead of molded versions. Now here's looking forward future anniversary releases.

ThreeA ~ WWR : N.O.M. Disciple 27.

A (mis) interpretation :

Name: Unknown.
Designation: Dritte.
Alias: The Third Eye.
Age: Unknown.
Affiliation: The N.O.M. Legion. 
Ranks : 27th Nom di Sciple - Der Alle Sehen Spezialgruppe.
Std. armaments : N.O.M. Totenmaske, N.O.M. Lebensunterstützung Hilfesystem, Ragnarök - .50 auto-revolver x 2; Angantyr - power mace x 1.
Abilities : Panzer Kunst - anti-armour martial art; psionic manipulation; transhuman physiology. 

Dritte or The Third Eye, is the 27th neophyte recruited as a Nom di Sciple by the N.O.M Legion during the Second Founding. Dritte bears an uncanny resemblance to the late Noir de Plume and Barguest de Plume - dark persona, enigmatic and merciless. He is a member of the All Seeing Eyes elite group or Der Alle Sehen Spezialgruppe. This particular elite group is trained to walk the Path of the Seer, which is the longest, most treacherous, most complex and rarest of the Path of Three. Those whom undertook this Path and survive would be the most powerful psykers amongst the N.O.M. faction, their skills and abilities rivalled only by The Unforgiven. A single individual could mind wipe and takes total control over any machines simultaneously including an entire company of warbots and infantries alike. They could also take over the controls of the Melchizedek and its terminals, battle ships and orbital satellites effortlessly. They are known to worked closely with the infiltrated and compromised Terra Coalition Armed Forces' Daywatch and Nightwatch Defence Divisions, of which were later excommunicated.
The Nom di Sciple 27 establishes his reputation amongst the N.O.M. Legion during the event of the Second War of Unbelief launched against the N.O.M. fortress monastery by The Lost and the Damned, comprising excommunicated Fallens warbands. A particularly powerful Fallen de Plume had killed his master, and Dritte, in furious anger, engaged the champion in a personal battle involving hand to hand combat and test of psychic powers against each other in both Realspace and the Immaterium. In the climatic fight, a grievously injured Dritte managed to overwhelm the Fallen de Plume by un-leashing an uncontrollable massive blast of telekinetic detonation. The Fallen de Plume survived and barely escaped but not before Dritte carved his late master's designated name psychically onto the Fallen's heart itself out of anger.
The Supreme Mother has personally noted Dritte potentials and continued to monitor his abilities via The Unforgiven. His skills is considered still but a fraction of its full power. She has also looked into the different destinies or paths awaiting him. Of which to thread, the choice is his but the outcome would be pivotal to the struggle and survival of the N.O.M. Legion.

An updated version of the iconic Nom de Plume figures from 3A. This is supposedly a disciple of NOM faction. Check out those tubes/hoses. It  doesn't gets any weirder. Chloe and Dylan once had a glance at the "elephant man" as they call it - Fantome, NOM Commanders. The best thing 'bout this 3A offering is the now fully laced, no more molded pair of boots. These are man sized boots and its great. Wish Hot Toys would follow 3A's lead...  

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Hot Toys MMS 177 - The Dark Knight Rises : The Batpod.

...and 'ere the Batpod arrives. The TDKR version. Missed out on the TDK one, so this would do, though I would love to have the all black out version. Tried to search for technical specs on this bad boy (although I would admit initially, I dismissed the Batpod as an exercise in wasting moolah as I was more enamoured with "heavier" design like, say, Kaneda's bike). Comes with the standard bells and whistles as its celluloid version such as light up features, EMP rifle clip on 'cept' as far as tangible reproduction in 1/6th scale is possible.  This means the wheels could not roll against their normal axes for added stability and crazy maneuvering, the body would not rotate to keep Bats upright position nor elongates to allow Bats to ride beneath low-hanging obstacles as seen in the breathtaking action sequence in TDK and TDKR. I wanna pose the Bats ridin the bike but afraid I might break somethin. Or maybe Selina Kyle is the one I really wants to pose with this baby. The Batpod kinda completes the armouries of Chris Nolan's version of Bats by Hot Toys. Rumours have it that the Bat, yes the hovering/helicopter/plane hybrid airborne bug-like vehicle seen prominently in TDKR, is on hold or scrapped, but nothing is written in the stone yet...

Hot Toys DX10 ~ T2 : T-800.

In the movie The Expendables 2, Arnie and Bruce have had a comparatively longer screen time than the first one. The dialogues are incredibly fun, with these veterans throwing humorous sarcasm and poking funs at each others stereotypical roles they were famous for at the height of their acting careers. Here's one. Trench (Arnie) says to Church (Bruce), "I'll be back", of which Church retorts, " You've been back enough! I'll be back!" of which a perplexed Trench says sheepishly, "Yippee-ki-yay". So, what does that got to do with DX10 T2 T800? Hot Toys seems to subscribe the signature Arnie line, literally. Suddenly there's a slew of The Terminator related figures focusing on Arnie, unofficially making this year the Year of the Governator. And Year of Mee Maggi for me. I guessimate Hot Toys' marketing teams really paid attention during Marketing Strategy 101.
Allow me to cowpehcowboh for abit. The T2 T-800 was released awhile back as a MMS format figure. Personally, it is one of the most outstanding figures I ever own. Solid, menacing, no dodgy QC issue/concern. Hot Toys really hit "solid gold" with that. Heck, I even hunt down those minigun, grenade launcher, bandoleer, bag from Coomodel to "complete" the look. It stands proud in the display as one of the best. Until Hot Toys decides to embark on a series of "re-issues" - version 2, re-releases etc. An upgrade or if I missed out on a classic figure I like due to nostalgic attachment to a movie is fine but lately, barely few years have passed and wham, "here's version 2 or a DX version of so and so". With the concern I have had with the TDKR thunder thigh, thick waist, fat Bats and guy-o-liner inflicted Indy, I starts to have doubt over Hot Toys capability in managing the expectation of their DX line. When I sees the promo pics of DX10, I am sold, despite a nagging hesitation and voice in the back of head saying "NO!! STOP! ARE U SERIOUS?". But I pushed it all aside, coz it's...Arnie. In his classic most memorable role and one of fav movies. I POed it, slapped down the DP to a smiling David and downed couple of Xanax as I walked back to the car park. Bromance is costly indeed.
And now its 'ere. First to collect from BST xl-shop. Wonder if  there's discount but that's pushin it. Dave opened the brown box for inspection as well as, like me, eager to see the real stuff. My heart pumpin like it's on turbo boost. Palms sweatin. Why? Coz curiously, the DX10 was released over the States side before hitting Asian market. The forums were buzzin with all forms of positive and negative POV. Typical. But still, I have my reservations.
The box is all signature DX, supposedly covered with lather, I mean, leather but most probably faux skin, with a nifty "T-2" logo of which I can slide horizontally across to reveal the half pic of Arnie. Goosebumps were raised all around as I broke into my best rendition of the opening theme of The Terminator as Dave slid it. The first thingy to inspect is the headsculpt. Initial pics shown in forums drawn some scepticism (but has now met with extremely positive reviews thus far). Personally, I view the headsculpt as the "liposuctioned, Nip/Tuck, Botox-fied" version of Arnie. Skynet really works wonder, does it? Man, he/it looks as smooth as Smooth Criminal. Oil of Ulan again? I don't remember the T2 T-800 looking so...fresh and "young". The attire is now made of leather. I am not sure which unfortunate animal skin the Terminator used but David raised a (valid) point that some Muslim customers have reservations over collecting it. The minigun's there, grenade launcher, bandoleer, and to "justify" the DX tag, it comes with the CPU micro-processor, dampener and a made of metal plier. There's the Pringle made of skin, for the more creative and adventurous to re-create the deleted scene of which Sinead O Connor, I mean, Sarah Connor retrives the CPU after surgically slice open the scalp of the T-800. These stuffs are tiny. So far so good. Even if Arnie looks kinda young-ish. Off to home I went. And leaves it in the storeroom for awhile.
Couple of days later, I took it out, for its time to lookit properly and yup, comparison with the hit MMS version. My chest feels like being hit with a freight train of bewilderment. What a huge difference. Firstly, the head sculpt. Arnie may looks young-ish (even when compared to the "bad" T-800 from the first movie) but side by side with the MMS version, it is very obvious that Hot Toys has put effort in improving the look, and perhaps take it to another level. The MMS version now looks like  a "caricature" when posed side by side. I ain't joking. The skin tone also different. The DX version is more tan, like going out more often in the sun, than the MMS version, which now looks like suffering from some skin pigmentation concerns. Nevertheless, the MMS version headsculpt still exudes a menacing look, something which I could not achieve with the DX, irregardless of the PERS. But slap on the upgraded, proportion corrected Stingray shades, however, the DX wins by miles in term of "you've got the look" over the MMS. I experimented abit by swapping the 'eadsculpts and immediately changed it back due to a different skin tone and "giraffe neck" look. Darn. However, the DX neck is kinda, well, thick-ish. Like a tree trunk. The MMS version, to me at least, seems a tad more proportionate. 
The new made of leather attire looks slightly better than MMS version but just. Maybe the advantage could be to achieve a real life worn leather look after posing, playing with it. What the MMS version scores are in terms of overall height, and body mass. The DX looks kinda small abit when standing side by side with its earlier, more sanely priced doppleganger. And I thought it looks like havin a "lollipop" head syndrome. Again, Hot Toys inflicted a perfectly macho killing machine with a girl size motorcycle boots, unlike the manly one worn by the MMS version. This also makes it kinda harder to stand and pose when fully armed. The sillouette and the manner of which the attire "hangs" on the MMS also looks somewhat more "natural". The DX version, particularly the pants, looks a tad tight, with zero "stacks". This may be due to the body itself, as I think the DX version's thigh seems a bit beefier. All in all, the DX version has a slight case of "Honey, I shrunk the kids". Sigh...could have been perfect but that's life.
Nothing breaks this time 'round, and the built is par excellent as the MMS. Hot Toys could have combined these two into one single release. But that's wishful thinking...Also, I think they left out the smoke launcher. Another version in the pipeline? No more, man. Just hopin Hot Toys would re-visit their early MMS like Rambo and Rocky instead of going round and round various versions of The Terminator, The Predator and Iron Man. Licensing concerns I guess. And I would still keep the original gangsta of the T-800 around. I have a feeling that I could kitbash it for a certain character from Frank Miller's Sin City series. And oh, there's DX13 coming next year. And POed. There's also whispers of a 1/6th scale T-800 endoskeleton in the pipeline. Yippee-ki-yay indeed.

Friday, 23 November 2012

ThreeA ~ Popbot : Heavy Tomorrow King Nasu.

Fairies wear boots.

- Black Sabbath.

A (mis) interpretation:

Category: Mass Production Replicants.
Model type: The Tomorrow King - GEN 2.0.
Unit type: Heavy TK.
ID : Nasu.
Rank: Shatei.
Manufacturer : The Luthor Bean Jr. Corporation.
Incept Date : 26th August 1990
Serial no.: TKG02MAC26081990.
Longevity : 4 years.
Function : Heavy artillery support.
Physical : Level A.
Mental : Level C.
Abilities : Panzer Kunst - anti-armour martial art; superhuman physiology.
Std. armaments : MOBY DICK - rocket launcher x 1; ion cyclotron power glove x 2.

The Heavy Tomorrow Kings are manufactured as mobile artillery assault, devoted to provide long range firing support on the battle fields of the Underverse Warp rift. The least popular amongst the TKs produced from the Luthor Bean Jr. Corp. hatcheries, the Heavies nevertheless are known to have played important roles in the guerrilla type warfare in certain battles, with particular specialty in bringing down the towering Mortis battle titans from a distance, for they are issued with big MOBY DICK rocket launchers which shoot the melta type incendiary missile. The missile works by sub-atomic agitation of the air upon impact, resulting in a superheated explosion up to a million degree Kelvin. The head, torso or limbs of a Mortis titan on the receiving end are usually reduced to no more than a pool of liquid, molten slag or vaporized completely. Besides the roar of the explosive vaporising of the target or detonation, the rocket launchers themselves make little noise when firing. Given their fairly quiet and very effective nature, infiltrating Heavies make use of the launchers to lay devastating salvos onto the Mortis titans before they get a chance to fight on the battlefield.