Tag Archives: Dragon

The Black(tron) Knight

The Black(tron) Knight faces off against the fearsome dragon Neoclassica

The combination of futuristic space technology and high fantasy has of course been done before. LEGO has its own slightly cringeworthy Nexo Knights, but even the Star Wars franchise is effectively high fantasy in a tech setting, with its Sith and Jedi wizards and its fighter pilot knights.

I didn’t think much of Nexo Knights’ execution, but the concept is sound. And because it’s me, the high technology in question has a better-than-average chance of having something to do with the Classic Space/Blacktron metatheme.

In this case, I’ve perhaps subconsciously channelled my flipped Brightly Coloured Tyranny take on the original LEGO Space universe, because the knight is a Blacktron and the draconoid (“draco” + “mechanoid”) is in NCS colours. But building a Black(tron) Knight references the Classic Castle prototheme’s original bad guy as well as the Classic Space universe’s primary adversaries.

I’ve wanted to build an updated Neoclassic Space dragon for several months now but not been inspired as to specifics. My original Elemental Dragon of Classic Space was in some ways a markedly different build: more of a blended hybrid between spaceship and creature. This Classic Space dragon being a robotic creature, it skips out on some of the Elemental Dragon’s features, like cockpit and thrusters and the like.

The difference is mostly that the previous dragon was an Elemental Dragon of the “Element” of Classic Space. In view of the weird stuff considered “elements” by the various LEGO themes – lightning, ice (as well as water), sound, mind, amber, love – having an element of Classic Space is not something I consider much of a stretch, but that’s beside the point for this creation. This dragon was created in order to serve as an adversary for the Black(tron) Knight.

The hover horses were one of the few bits of Nexo Knights that I thought were well thought out and well designed. So I decided to make my own version of a mostly horse-shaped speeder; bigger and hopefully more impressive than the Nexo hoversteed. I went Blacktron initially because of the colours of my CCBS elements, but the idea of a Black Knight that’s a Blacktron seemed like a good one. And that meant either a Neoclassic Space or Neo-Futuron dragon, unless I built a second grav-destrier and generated a joust.

I still might; a Neo-Futuron grav-destrier is more probable with my element inventory, or possibly a Neo-Space Police I version.

Until then, the Black(tron) Knight is fighting an NCS dragon and red-spacesuited technomancer.

Technomancer and robofamiliar, space tower, and weird hyperspace beacon monument

The technomancer was an afterthought, actually. As a set, this would be a bit boring without at least one more minifigure, and a pilot for the dragon didn’t seem right this time around. But a high-tech wizard equivalent? That has possibilities…

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LSS Cytherous

Dragon-carved star frigate of the Galactic League, LSS Cytherous is typical of the League’s design approach to spacegoing vessels.

The Galactic League is an ancient transstellar body of numerous sapient species, whose incredibly high technology masks the inherent reactionary conservatism of its members. Most member species advance technologically only at a glacial pace, and the few fast-paced galactic species like humans are considered disruptive and dangerous.

The League’s conservatism and high technological level manifests itself in a predilection for ornate design, and figureheaded starships are the rule rather than the exception.

Given the League’s ancientry and dislike of humans, it might be surprising that a human mythological creature would be used as a figurehead, but dragons and dragonlike creatures are common to the mythology of many Galactic worlds. The Cytherous is the form of draconid in the mythology of the Sthan Ka Ree, one of the eldest Galactic species – a pseudo-avian race who occupy many administrative positions within the League.

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Apparently I like the idea of dragon starships, because this isn’t my first. This 100-stud SHIP uses the head of Zane’s first ice dragon from the Ninjago theme as a figurehead. I’m also pleased with the incorporation of the Coruscant planet sphere elements like I’ve been wanting to do for a while now.

Built in mostly studs-forward configuration, this could be thought of as SHIPtember practice, or simply as something I built because I wanted to. It’s also my first SHIP which I built without actually trying to get it to 100 studs. I just measured it afterwards and was pleasantly surprised to discover that it does actually measure the magic 31½ inches.

Ice Dragon 2002

Not my first combination of dragons and space, but definitely my most draconic, this is obviously a dragon of the old Ice Planet 2002 theme.

Ninjago has given us plenty of “elemental dragons” of all sorts of elements including ice, and in the past I’ve personally built “elemental dragons” of Steampunk (on the defunct LEGO Galleries, alas) and Classic Space. I had some ideas about building a Blacktron space dragon (which served as a partial inspiration for the Dragon-class Blacktron battlecruiser) but I’d never considered an Ice Planet elemental dragon before.

Until now.

The Elemental Dragon of Krysto is much more definitely a dragon than the fusional Classic Space variety, with a rider rather than a cockpit and those moulded dragon feet elements on its four legs. Still, Ice Planet 2002 did have a lot of open-cockpit vehicles, so I felt less need to enclose the crewman.

Sized about like the Jay’s Lightning Dragon or the first Zane’s Ice Dragon, about the only concessions to space vehiclehood here are the shoulder-mounted rocket engines and the bits of ice saw and skis at the end of the tail.

Still, you couldn’t mistake it for anything but an Ice Planet dragon with its colours and Celestial Christmas Pudding logos.

I’m fairly pleased with how this turned out, even with the CCBS elements on the neck and tail rather than being exclusively built. That shouldn’t really feel like a cheat, but somehow it does a bit.

O For A Muse Of Fire…

My son wanted to rebuild his prized Green NRG Dragon set, and he made the request that I build a similar-sized dragon for Kai, the Red Ninja of fire.

Kai’s Elemental Fire Dragon

It’s been a while since I built a dragon, and Kai’s my favourite of the Ninja (unless it’s his sister Nya), so I thought I’d have a go.

The Green NRG Dragon has a rather nice scaly belly look on the lower frontal section, and part of my thinking was to see if I could make an extended version of that which would cover basically the entire underbelly. That’s where this model started, and I built it up from there.

Note the scaly belly. Try to ignore the unfinished-looking underwings.

The head is large and impressive, but quite heavy for those poor balljoints and tends to sag if not posed very carefully. Clickstop universal joints would have alleviated this tendency, but they make for a longer and less flexible joint that would have detracted from the look of the build and made posing more of a challenge anyway. I posed its head very carefully.

I liked the “unusualness factor” of the wyvern bodyplan on the Green NRG Dragon, but I prefer my dragons to have four legs, so that’s how I built this one. The front feet look less than fully stellar when he’s posed rearing up on his back legs to expose that snakelike belly, but maybe I could build a set of alternate front feet that are more handlike, and swap them out like the extra stud shooter hand of the Clayface Splat Attack set (replacing that hammer hand).

The head has ended up with rather a Smauglike look, which wasn’t planned but I liked the way it was shaping up so I went with it. A bit nasty-looking for our heroic Ninja, perhaps, but it does work well for a big red dragon.

The last time Kai had an official dragon he had to share it with his sister, so it’s been a while since he’s had his own dragon. And I don’t think Nya’s had a full-on Elemental Dragon of Water of her very own (unshared with her pyrotechnic brother, I mean) yet. We don’t have a lot of Nya’s lighter blue, though, so building her a dragon on this scale would be challenging.

If Only Construction Equipment Was Like This…

I’m not sure where the inspiration for this came from. Kind of a conceptual hybrid between LEGO’s City Construction subtheme and my own Classic Space elemental dragon, it’s effectively part bulldozer and part mythological creature.

With a wyvern bodyplan like the Green NRG Dragon set, this thing uses the feet from that one and builds up from there.

Yellow is quite an unusual colour for dragons, but for a constructodragon there’s really no other choice as a primary colour. The black lower parts also echo a lot of real and LEGO construction equipment, so that works too.

The thin neck seems to work surprisingly well on this model. Normally I’d be grousing about wanting it to be more muscular, but somehow the scrawny, almost cockatrice-like look seems apt, especially with the support-strut wings and the relatively small head.

The grabber-claw tail isn’t as fully articulated as I’d normally accept in a dragon tail, but for a constructodragon it really seemed like the only acceptable solution.

The caterpillar treads around the wing mounts were an afterthought, but I think a good one. It makes the whole thing much more constructiony and in keeping with the theme. They necessitated a fairly extensive rebuild of the upper body to make them work, and the body is now much higher and bulkier, but that also works as a constructodragon. And remarkably, it doesn’t make the neck look unreasonable.

Is this the start of a whole series of weird-themed dragons? Perhaps. Policedragon? Pirate dragon? Race car dragon? Underwater exploration dragon? Only time can tell…

Elemental Dragon of Classic Space

The completed Space Dragon

The completed Space Dragon

Dragon? Spaceship?

Yes.

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Combining my two favourite things to build into a single MOC, this is my “Elemental Dragon of Classic Space”. Apparently I have access to enough blue now to pull this sort of thing off.

We’ve seen “Elemental Dragons” of all manner of “elements”; I myself have built an Elemental Dragon of Steampunkery. LEGO likes elemental powers, and their list of elements is fairly extensive, with only tenuous connection to the various classical lists. I figure I’m on safe ground.

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Whether it’s a spaceship shaped like a dragon or a dragon with spaceship-like features, I think any Sir Benny would be pleased with the result. It probably doesn’t breathe fire, but it might breathe plasma. By the same token, it doesn’t have any obvious laser cannons (possibly those stubs under the wings?), but a plasmatic breath weapon is almost as good.

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I tried out two different versions of the legs. The first, directly above, here, was a more draconic version, definitely dragon legs rather than anything else, and rather begged the question of how the creature/vessel’s propulsion worked.  It also had a couple of other tweaks, particularly the placement of the horns.

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Then I decided that combination leg/thrusters was the way to go, abandoning the claws and slightly strange back feet for a quartet of engines. The resulting legs are a bit stubbier, and part of me is unsure about completely giving up on the claws, but it works better for being a spaceship and it’s still recogniseably a dragon.

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Besides, as the Elemental Dragon of Classic Space, it should have Classic Space features.

The wings are regrettably studded, but I used all of my available grey tiles to alleviate the problem and this was the best compromise I could manage between wings of an appropriate size and shape and total unwieldiness of weight. I’d have preferred a smoother finish, but you do what you can.

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Likewise, a red or white astronaut would have looked better, but according to some suit classification schemes the green suits are mech drivers, so that does sort of fit. And I still have yet to purchase Classic Space astronauts in those colours, so I’m stuck with green for the moment.

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Rahrr!

Rahrr!

Here Be Dragons

Following on from my Elemental Dragon of Earth and White Dragon builds, I decided to have another go at a proper Eastern-style dragon. My friend Luke Skytrekker is right; there really aren’t many of them out there. But there’s another one now, because I built it.

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Red is a good colour for a Chinese-style dragon, because it has cultural associations of prosperity and good fortune. Also, unlike blue or yellow or some other colours, I have the bricks to put something like this together in a reasonable colour scheme.

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This dragon is not as big and bulky as my white dragon Aghtajal, but the slimmer, serpentine form is much more appropriate to a proper Eastern dragon. He’s also considerably smaller than my first Asian Dragon MOC, but since that one was quite a rainbow warrior (and I loathe building rainbow warriors) I’m ok with that.

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Unlike most of my dragons, this one has no place for a rider. People don’t tend to put riders and saddles on an Asiatic dragon in the way they do on a European one; somehow it’s less common. Fantasists don’t tend to use Eastern dragons as much, and it’s really that genre than pushes the whole dragon-rider thing.

Anyway, this dragon has no rider.

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If I remember right, the three toes make it a Japanese dragon rather than a Chinese dragon, though it might be four toes and five toes. I remember the Chinese dragon has an extra toe relative to the Japanese, but not the precise number. Red would have been nice for the toes, but I don’t have any finger elements in that colour. I couldn’t even do them all in black, and one foot and a toe would look silly.

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I also took the opportunity to make up a Flaming Pearl for the dragon to hold. If I recall correctly, the Pearl is a sort of cosmic thunderbolt or lightning weapon of dragons, associated with their aspect as lords of the sky and weather.

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I had to break up my Cole’s Earth Dragon MOC to build this, but that’s ok. The best MOC is always the next one! And we have enough bricks in the household to keep this, my White Dragon, Jay’s Elemental Dragon and a Lloyd mech made mostly out of Green NRG Dragon all built at the same time! Coolness!