Go Go Power Rangers!

Well, I said this was gonna happen, and sure enough, here we are.

Last Christmas, I found myself in possession of an updated, highly accurate, highly durable, highly desirable and highly expensive set of items that I’ve been hoping to acquire for most of my life. While I never gained the original, I managed to land something far better. I am of course talking about the revamped, 2017 model Dinozord Megazord. I’m talking the OG Megazord, the 5 Dinozords of the hit 90’s show, Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers: Black Mastodon, Pink Pterodactyl, Blue Triceratops, Yellow Sabertooth Tiger and Red Tyrannosaurus. They assemble into the Megazord the exact same way as they did in the show. Green Dragonzord is also included, but wasn’t in the set. He is also compatible with the other 5 for its own set of transformations, including Dragon-Megazord and to combine as the mantle on Megazord’s shoulders. Being the 90’s kid that I am, I HAD to jump onto that wagon as soon as I became aware of it and the fact I have lots of money helps. Trust me when I say, this is the Megazord set that child me could only dream of. And child me is very happy right now, as this is fulfilling a long childhood dream and I am just loving the vast improvements on this over the one I wanted as a kid. It just feels so right that seeing them in my room, it’s like they’re home. They were always meant to be here. Shiny and new, presenting themselves to be like the new guardians of my room, the old ones awakened for their real duty. It’s a piece of me that feels completed.

That being said, why is this being posted in WIPs? Because, I have begun a project that will be a very very serious undertaking, but I’m planning on making this pretty much my 2021 goal. If I get it done sooner than the end of 2021, then I can at least complete the year with the satisfaction of knowing it’s done. If I don’t, then I can at least say I’m closer to completing it than I was at the start of 2021. I’ve got 11 months after this one, I’m hoping to get this done within that period. But as always, we’ll see what life throws at me. But that’s the plan.

The project? Why, making the Dinozords in Blender, of course! This will be an interesting project, on the account I’m using real life models to make the meshes and then using the Zords, both real and in Blender, to measure each other. They are all individual machines, but they combine into a much larger machine that is in itself composed of many smaller parts, much like the individuals are. So by using the pieces to measure each other, every Zord will be pretty much guaranteed to be to scale with each other.

But it won’t be enough to make the models. They’ll need to be rigged as well. However, the rigging will complicate the process of animation because of the sheer amount of movements involved in themselves individually, but also when assembled. So my project has many aspects to it. Here is the current plan:

-Make the Zords individually. Each Zord will have their own Blend file, mesh-only.

-In new Blend files, make copies of the individual Zords. Each copy will be rigged in a different manner:

1, for the function of the Zord as an individual.

2, if the action is complicated enough, for the action of transforming into Megazord.

And of course, 3, the Zords together as Megazord, rigged as a single entity for its own articulation.

After all, why make the Zords if they’re not going to transform into Megazord? That was one of the HUGE appeals to the show. Even now, I get nostalgia waves just thinking about making the sequence shot-for-shot - and hopefully with matching music! It’s one of my bigger Blender goals, and I really hope to get that done. Call me childish, but this is something I need to do for my own mental health. And who knows? Replicating the TV show in Blender might get seen by the right people, if I do it well enough…

That being said, for those of you who don’t know how the show goes, here is the sequence and the benchmark for what I’m trying to achieve: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mQuHh1X4H4

And yes, I know it’s probably kinda cheesy for you folks in this age, but back when I was a kid, that was the bomb. And you can’t deny that transforming machine animals are the pinnacle of 90’s kid enjoyment. To me, Mighty Morphin’ will always be king in the legacy of Power Rangers.

This is the topic where the updates to this project will be posted.

And the first Zord in the lineup is the Pink Pterodactyl. I chose this one for three reasons. One, it’s a relatively simple shape. It’s a general shield shape and a lot of the details are very simple geometry. It’s a good one to get a feel for the project with. Second, it’s a good start for measuring the other Zords. With the Pterodactyl being the Megazord’s chest, the inner width will measure the Tyrannosaur’s chest, thus beginning the measuring processes before even making him. And third, the Pterodactyl only has four joints. So, the beginning of this process has begun to be underway.

what an awesome start. I’m looking forward to seeing this. I didn’t watch the show when it was on but I did see the latest movie they made. And enjoyed it. I love movies with graphics in them. I tend to sit and look to see how they are made and marvel at them.

The latest movie? The 2017 movie? I think it’s because you didn’t watch the show you were able to enjoy it. I’ve seen clips of it and feel like key aspects of what made the Power Rangers… well, the Power Rangers was completely lost in that movie. Especially when it came to the Zords. It felt to me like Hollywood’s iconic butchering their source material.

Part of my want to do this project is to make an animation for the Power Rangers far closer to what the show was. Power Rangers in itself is a loose concept, so fine. But they stuck “mighty morphin” on the title, so by THAT standard, they messed up a lot of elements I intend to correct with my playing around.

I’m glad you’re looking forward to the end result, as am I. I’m aiming to do this right!

It’s morphin’ time y’all! LOL
Looks awesome so far, good call going with the simplest first. It’s gonna feel great achieving it and will give you that accomplishment boost to keep you going for the more challenging ones!
Are you planning on making the Rangers as well?

Eventually, yes. The helmets are going to be the hard part, but once I make the Zords, I do hope to have those little cockpit scenes as well so I can make the whole bit for the “log on” and “crystal” bits. I know it’s a far-away goal, but if I can keep working bit by bit, who knows? Maybe I might get an animated Power Rangers episode made. I can do it like the show too, and make scenes like the Megazord transformation ahead of time and just stick them in when needed. Make my own stock footage.

Well, a big boom of progress today! The body segment is now pretty well complete! Now I just need the wings, neck and head and the Pink Pterodactyl will be done!

Great idea @DriftingEmbers I really like it!!
Good luck! and have fun! ?

It’s all coming together!

It is done!! The Pink Pterodactyl is complete!

No pictures to show yet, just announcing that the next Zord has begun production. It’s going to be one of the more challenging ones, but given the Pterodactyl has been done, it’ll be used for measuring.

The next Zord: Red Tyrannosaurus!

This one’s going to take a while.

Already an update! The torso of the T-Rex is underway. Currently, it looks like this, having also stopped to add detailing on the back:

Been on a roll. T-Rex’s chest and main shoulder panels have been added. The head will be interesting, as I basically have to do two heads - the Megazord’s head and the T-Rex head. They occupy the same space, at that. Getting his limbs exactly right is going to be a slight issue as well, but I have to say, this is going more smoothly than I figured.

Managed to finish the torso. Arms and all. The hands will be subject to tweaking, but I think it gets the job done for now. As I said, the head will be one of the trickier things, but I also thought the torso was going to be a lot harder than it was. Due to work, progress will be slower, so I won’t spam you guys with this topic so much. But if I can get the T-Rex done by the end of Monday next week, I’ll be happy. But even getting him done within January would be a big plus, getting two Zords done in one month - and I didn’t even begin this at the beginning of the month!

I’m also mostly aiming for the original 5. I DO want to make Dragonzord as well by the end of this year, but if I can at least get Megazord, that’s my main topic of interest for this project as of right now.

Slowly, but surely… the Megazord head is getting into view. Just need to take this one step at a time… Got a lot done for a work day, today.

Again, slowly but surely. Just gotta get every piece right… The horns on the helmet are just as iconic as the rest of it. Gotta get the shape of those pieces right as they slide frontways from the back. So much to keep in mind… No horns yet, but here’s the beginning to that step.

Horn added, Megazord head complete! Now for the T-Rex head.

Awesome progress man! This is looking sick!

Finally, I think the “hardest” part has been complete. The most meticulous and detail-oriented, tedious but necessary step. The head of the T-Rex after having completed the head of the Megazord.

Being a bit slow, but the progress is immense. … But, is it slow? I mean, this is about a Zord and a half in around a week, right? Am I pressuring myself too much?

Tail added! Now, he just needs legs and fine-tuning.