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3DBlake's 7: Redesigned

The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
edited September 2013 in Work in Progress #1
A few years ago, I started playing around with redesigns of ships from the BBC Classic sci-fi series, Blake's 7. This was inspired not a little bit by the audio re-imagining first broadcast in 2006.

The main subject of this was the 'hero ship', the Liberator, well known for resembling a microphone flying backwards (this actually was the basis for the design...). And while I have a big soft spot for the original design - it is wonderfully unique - I wanted to have a go at producing something more modern-looking. Something a little more *dangerous* looking. In the audio plays, the ship is depicted as being both alive and predatory, barely under the rag-tag crew's control. I tried to reflect that in the external appearance, as well as mapping the hexagon motif from the interior on to the exterior.

Recently, I've started rebuilding my take on the Liberator in Blender, taking the lessons I learned building it the first time and using them to refine the design. This has also allowed me to begin creating an interior for the ship as well.

Below are some early WIP images. Bear in mind that the entire drive section is missing at the moment. I've built a shuttle to give you some idea of scale - going with the audio plays' depiction, I'm building the ship to be a little over 2km long. Oh, and sorry if these aren't the best quality. I rendered them this morning before work and had to hurry out without checking them until lunchtime.

Hopefully they'll give enough of an idea of what I'm going for thought!
Post edited by The Librarian on


  • oldmangregoldmangreg146 Woodland Hills, CAPosts: 1,336Member
    In the tumbnail I thought it was a Tholian ship lol.
    Your right to an opinion does not make your opinion valid.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Heh. Not exactly! This is more hexagon based than triangular...

    More, brighter pics!

    The interior, by the way, is arranged so that down is towards the powercore, up towards the nose, like a skyscraper.
  • SaquistSaquist1 Posts: 0Member
    I think it's a good start but the tank tread makes the design look small.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Well, there's a lot of detail still to go in there.

    Which I have started adding...
  • RekkertRekkert3387 Buenos Aires, ArgentinaPosts: 2,239Member
    This is a very interesting layout, and I like your radical redesign very much.
    For all my finished Trek fan art, please visit my portfolio
  • VALKYRIE013VALKYRIE013547 Posts: 1,473Member
    thats interesting.. LOVE the original.. this is an interesting take!
  • Knowles2Knowles2171 Posts: 0Member
    A interesting design. I look forward to seeing where you take it.
  • ElowanElowan0 Posts: 0Member
    Knowles2 wrote: »
    A interesting design. I look forward to seeing where you take it.

    Me too!
  • publiusrpubliusr429 Posts: 1,597Member
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    This is great. I'd add some rear weapons to the pods.

    It's design fits with the race that built the original liberator. It looks like something a machine intelligence might make.

    BTW, love it even more now that I see you're doing it in blender!
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks for the comments, everyone!

    publiusr - you know, I've seen that rocketship before but never put it together with the Liberator in my head. I wonder if it was a design influence...

    Judge Death - cheers! Blender's great isn't it? And neutron cannons on the back of the weapons pods are part of my original version of this design and will definitely be carried over to this model. I'll probably add them next.

    Sorry for the lack of updates, by the way. I've been distracted building Daleks and taking a weeks holiday away from my powerful PC, but I hope to do some work on the Liberator soon.
  • BrandenbergBrandenberg1650 CaliforniaPosts: 1,930Member
    I like this a lot! Will follow!
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    Are you using subsurf 1 on this?

    BTW, the creators of the liberator had those interceptors or gunboats that were just the liberator's nacelle with an engine at the end. Maybe you could do a spinoff of one with this.

    |I wanted to ask you how you got the sharp edges. I assume you're subsuring to at least one level,and was wondering if you got the sharp line edges by edge looping or edge creasing. Or did you use bumpmaps?
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    Even if no one else responds to this I'd still like to know some of the techniques you used to get this, so please respond.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks for commenting and sorry for the delay in replying - the Dalek project took longer than expected.

    The sharp edges are done using an Edge Split modifier - that's how I get all sharp edges in my models. It's set to 5 degrees, since there are no curved surfaces on the majority of the ship.

    Some more WIP shots below: I've built up the engine section a bit and added the rear-mounted neutron cannons to the weapons pods.

    Also, I've got a design for the System Interceptor as well, so yes, I will build that too!
  • CoolhandCoolhand241 PhobosPosts: 1,273Member
    looks great, hope you're thinking of adding more actual greebles, it would suit this design type well, perhaps not absolutely everywhere, but that whole area between the fuselage and the engine module is begging for it.
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    Those lines along the long section of the center hull and the back sides of the pods, were those made by extruding or by bumpmaps?
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks for the comments!

    Coolhand - there will be greebles! I've already started adding them to the nose - some sort of sensors, I'm thinking - but it'll take a long time to build them all in. Still, hopefully I will be able to convey the size once I start layering them on the rest of the ship.

    Judge Death - it's all done by extruding. Everything you see so far is part of the mesh.

    It struck me after I posted the previous pictures how gloomy they were. So here are some brighter shots, with some more progress.
  • BlueNeumannBlueNeumann499 Posts: 1,213Member
    Okay, seriously, this has gotten me going, I LOVE your redesign It actually inspired an idea or two from me, including a concept for the ship's supplementary vessels.
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    I'm not so sure it needs a lot of greebles. A ship can be big without that sort of thing. A clean design might reflect a high technology.

    One thing I remember was that the ship supposedly had missile weapons, not really seen on the show but referred to, like when orac sabotaged the missile systems on DSV1 to fulfill his prophecy.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member's been a while. Having been thoroughly distracted by other projects, I've finally come back to the Liberator! I've done a fair bit of work on it this week, mainly detailing work, though I've also completely rebuilt the drive core to give it some actual structure and added the first bits of armour to the section immediately behind the pylons.

    Also included in the side-on view is the rough outline of a Federation Pursuit Ship, giving their relevant scales...

    Judge Death: - re the missiles, I've wavering on whether and where to put on the missile tubes. The hatches in the weapons nacelles are there to release swarms of seeker missiles, rather like the Nerada's homing rockets/torpedo things from Star Trek, so I don't know if it's necessary to add tubes to the hull as well. I suspect I probably will though, just to give some more surface detail.
  • BlueNeumannBlueNeumann499 Posts: 1,213Member
    Oh you know I've been waiting for some movement on this--- lookin' good. Didn't realize how big the thing was (really puts my Dominator in a whole different strata). Curious to see how you'll wind up texturing this-- will we be able to see windows?
  • Knight26Knight26189 Posts: 833Member
    Very cool, I never realized how big he libbie was before.
  • BlueNeumannBlueNeumann499 Posts: 1,213Member
    Yeah, you always think of it as the size of a microphone. That's the kicker about model shots, the second you have a frame of reference the size is locked in your head.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Thanks for the comments - BlueNeumann, I am utterly ashamed that I have only just looked up those vehicle designs that this inspired you to do. They are exceptionally cool and, with your permission, I will probably be returning them for inspiration as I go along. I particularly like where you've gone with the Dominator idea - I've had similar thoughts about taking the Liberator's basic structure and building outwards.

    Here are a few more WIPs, including the shuttle I'm building to accompany the Liberator. Very early stages with it, but I like the shape. Oh, and the bare bones of a Federation Pursuit Ship, together with accompanying scale shots.

    The Liberator is, incidentally, 2300m long from tip to tip. This is based on the 2000m figure given in the audio remake from a few years ago. The original was scaled a bit smaller I believe, though the model shots make it impossible to be sure. The Pursuit Ship is a much more modest 219m long, a totally arbitrary figure designed to make the Liberator look even more imposing.
  • BlueNeumannBlueNeumann499 Posts: 1,213Member
    Of course, man! Go for it! Who better? And I'd be so honoured. And these are turning out fantastic.
  • Judge Death.Judge Death.1 Posts: 0Member
    Sp you're making the interceptrs from the liberator's builders different ships? Good! The originals were just made uup of bits from the liberator for budget reasons. it worked in that they were obviously from the same people who'd built the liberator, but original ships are better.

    I might not color them, though. The liberator's builders were rather unemotional and I doubt they'd bother with ornamentation, color, etc.

    one suggestion: even though they were never shown in the series it was made clear that the liberator carrier missile weapons. I might consider replacing the side guns with missile pods. Give you an excuse to do up some cool missiles too.
  • BlueNeumannBlueNeumann499 Posts: 1,213Member
    BTW, sorry about you having to hunt for the Dominator sketch, I thought I had posted it in this thread (though perhaps I was thinking it was rude to do, which is why I didn't). I'm getting some ideas for that red dart pursuit ship.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    BlueNeumann: Please feel free to post them in here! I'd be very interested in seeing what you come up with - and don't worry about my having to hunt your previous sketches down: it gave me the chance to admire your first-rate design sketches! And to address one of your earlier questions, I'm really not sure about windows on the Liberator. I'm edging towards not, simply because I'm not sure the System - computer-centric as they are - would include them on a war ship. It sort of fits with their mentality: total reliance on machinery, not compromising their war vessels for human considerations. However, that has the disadvantage of removing a good scale indicator...

    Judge Death: I will be making the System Interceptors, yes, but (and forgive me if I'm getting the wrong end of the stick with what you wrote in your last post) the red ship is a Federation ship, one of the pursuit ships sent to hunt down the Liberator on Servalan's orders. Specifically, this is the 'Starburst' class pursuit ship, one of the most advanced Federation ships (according to the word of the original series). I'm planning to model another version closer to the original style of pursuit ship which, ala BSG, will act as a previous generation of Federation ship.

    When I get round to the System Interceptors themselves they will still resemble the Liberator's weapons pods, since I rather like the fact that they reflect a shared design lineage so closely - again, it fits with the System's approach: simply exporting working design elements to another ship.
  • The LibrarianThe Librarian0 Posts: 0Member
    Well, inspired by BlueNeumann's sketches and my own dissatisfaction with the existing model, I've started completely rebuilding the System shuttle. It works much better now and is definitely a superior mesh:
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