About Carter

Carter is a ninja. If I say anything more, he will kill me in my sleep.

Posts by Carter

Fly the friendly skies

Synchronicity is a funny thing, and in a hobby where we have a limited palette of parts but a near-infinite number of possible builds, surprisingly rarely seen.

However, Cagerrin and Damien Labrousse both had a similar idea recently, which they executed in strikingly different ways.

Cagerrin’s Kyusu A9W1 is a riveted piece of dieselpunk Sky-Fi, with smoothly curved angles and a plethora of real-world detailing, such as the complex night-fighting radar array in front.

Kyusu A9W1 Sōden(躁電) "Jess"

While keeping the same basic structure, Damien’s Space Wulf 190 is a spinier space-worthy fighter, similarly clad in a retro vibe but this time harking back to 70’s scifi.

Space wulf 190

Both builders credit anime as a primary source of inspiration; Sky Crawlers for Cagerrin and Captain Harlock for Damien. The design archetype also shows up in Wings of Honneamise, as built by Mike Psiaki with this classic.

Thank you, come again – LEGO announces 71016 The Kwik-E-Mart

LEGO unveiled a second set from The Simpsons today, 71016 The Kwik-E-Mart, which will be available later this year.


Click through for the full album.

As a child of the ’90s, The Simpsons was my favorite show, and naturally Lego was my favorite toy. My reaction to the combination of the two was ambivalence; as much as I still love Lego and hold nostalgia for the golden years of The Simpsons, their merging still feels somewhat unnatural, a feeling continuously reinforced by the uncanny valley nature of the bulbous cartoon heads on classic minifig bodies.

All that said, I’m excited for this set. I don’t believe Lego has ever tackled the inside of a convenience store before, and the set is chock full of nicely designed accessories and a plethora of printed and stickered details. But enough of my reaction based on a set of photos, here’s the press release;

71016 – The Kwik-E-Mart

Ages 12+. 2,179 pieces.
US $199.99 – CA $229.99 – DE 199.99€ – UK £169.99 – DK 1699.00 DKK
*Euro pricing varies by country. Please visit shop.LEGO.com for regional pricing.

Visit The Kwik-E-Mart—Springfield’s favorite convenience store!

Welcome to The Kwik-E-Mart—your one-stop shop for convenience foods at inconvenient prices! This highly detailed and iconic LEGO® version of The Simpsons™ store is packed with more rich, colorful details than a Mr. Burns birthday cake has candles! Walk under the huge Kwik-E-Mart sign and join Homer, Marge and Bart as they browse the aisles filled with beauty products, diapers, dog food, pastries, fruits, vegetables and more—including Krusty-O’s and Chef Lonelyheart’s Soup for One. Then head over to the refrigerated cases where you’ll find Buzz Cola, chocolate milk, various other drinks and snacks… and frozen Jasper! There’s also a Buzz Cola soda fountain, juice dispensers, coffee machine, arcade games, ATM and stacks of Powersauce boxes. At the counter, Apu is ready to tempt you with a variety of printed magazines, comic books, cards, tofu hot dogs, freshly expired donuts and his ever-popular hallucination-inducing Squishees. At the back, there’s a storage closet complete with rat and an exit. On the roof you’ll discover Apu’s secret vegetable garden, while outside this amazing model features bright-yellow walls, 2 phone booths, a stack of purple crates, and a dumpster area with ‘El Barto’ graffiti, opening door and an iconic blue dumpster that also opens. You can also remove the roof and open out the rear walls for easy access. This set also includes Snake (a.k.a. Jailbird), who loves nothing more than stealing cars and robbing the Kwik-E-Mart—but this time Chief Wiggum is hot on his tail in his police car. Capture this bandit and return peace to the town of Springfield and the amazing Kwik-E-Mart. This fantastic set includes 6 minifigures with assorted accessory elements: Homer Simpson, Bart Simpson, Marge Simpson, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Chief Wiggum and Snake (a.k.a. Jailbird).

  • Set includes 6 minifigures with assorted accessory elements: Homer Simpson, Bart Simpson, Marge Simpson, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, Chief Wiggum and Snake (a.k.a. Jailbird)
  • Features opening rear walls, a removable roof with secret vegetable garden, Kwik-E-Mart signage, light-blue walls, dusty blue floors, turquoise welcome mat, shelves, refrigerated cases, counter, Buzz Cola soda fountain, juice dispensers, coffee machine, 2 arcade games, ATM, crates of Powersauce bars, surveillance cameras, rear storage closet with a rat, cheese, rat hole and an exit door.
  • Shelves feature beauty products, diapers, dog food, pastries, fruits, vegetables and more—including Krusty-O’s and Chef Lonelyheart’s Soup for One
  • Refrigerator cabinets feature a variety of beverages including cans of Buzz Cola… and frozen Jasper!
  • Counter features a cash register, magazine and card display, lottery machine, hot dog oven, donut display and a Squishee dispenser with 2 Squishees
  • Also includes Chief Wiggum’s police car featuring an opening trunk, removable roof and space for 3 minifigures
  • Accessory elements include Bart’s spray can, Marge’s shopping basket, Apu’s broom and Chief Wiggum’s cuffs and truncheon
  • Snake (a.k.a. Jailbird) is exclusive to this set for fall 2015
  • Removable roof features rare, dark-orange bricks
  • Lift off the roof and open out the rear walls for easy access
  • Drink a Squishee and get that sugar-high feeling!
  • Apprehend Snake before he robs again!
  • Stock up with overpriced convenience goods
  • Discover frozen Jasper!
  • Relax in Apu’s utopian vegetable garden
  • Have a donut…. mmm, dooonuts!
  • Kwik-E-Mart measures over 5″ (14cm) high, 14″ (38cm) wide and 10″ (27cm) deep
  • Police car measures over 2″ (6cm) high, 2″ (6cm) wide and 5″ (15cm) deep

You can’t go home again – Homeworld in Lego

One of the biggest inspirations in the Lego space community has been Homeworld, the pair of fleet-building space RTS games from 1999 and 2003. With the gorgeous remastered editions released this past Wednesday, I don’t think there will be a better moment for a quick retrospective on how this incredible franchise has influenced builders over the past decade.

Danny Rice’s Porphyrion wasn’t the first Homeworld inspired build to be posted, but 9 years later it remains one of my all-time favorite MOCs. This masterpiece introduced a number of techniques that changed how SHIPs are built (particularly the use of paneling to create large angled hulls), and remains one of the best spaceships ever made out of Lego.

Porphyrion Assault Frigate

Many of Rob M’s builds are based around a combination of Homeworld and Japanese model-building, resulting in a glorious fusion of clean hard angles and bright splashes of color. This reimagining of a Taiidan gunship is one of my favorites from him.

Taiidan Gunship, slight return

Adrian Florea built this fantastically detailed recreation of a Vaygr bomber, using a wide variety of stickers and printed tiles to build what is perhaps one of the most faithful models ever made out of Lego.

Vaygr bomber 2

These are only a small sampling of my favorites; be sure to check out the Homeworld Lego pool to see more examples.

Finally, a Lego Ideas project was just launched to have official sets produced from the Homeworld franchise, and I’d encourage everyone to support it – it’s a gorgeous game, and it’s directly responsible for pushing the frontier of space building.

Art’s not dead

Many of my own builds are inspired by pieces of concept art, and one of my favorite artists has been Alexander Iglesias. I’m not alone in this regard; his art has inspired many a mecha builder over the years.

Most recently is Rancorbait, tackling one of my personal favorites, “Rotary cannons for some“.

"Gremlin" Multi-purpose platform

Simmon Kim has likewise been cranking out a whole fleet of awesome mecha lately, among them this take on The Fiddler.

fiddler mech

This flow of inspiration goes the other way, too; some artists have been inspired by the Lego community in their work.

Touching the frontier

7 years ago, Rob (Dasnewten) posted the first of his many mindblowing starfighter designs. Throughout the years since and in spite of the many incredibly builds he’s posted, it’s a design he’s continued to return to and refine, resulting in the radically evolved RG-101. It’s a glorious combination of clean lines and gorgeous details that looks better than most of the stuff produced by major studios.


A Drone a day keeps the meatbags away

I’ve been horribly remiss in not yet blogging my favorite month of the year, Droneuary. To amend for this oversight, feast your eyes on some of the best from the first half of the month.

Andrew Lee has been a one-man drone factory, churning out a fantastic variety of civilian drones in all shapes and sizes. This rogue medibot is a particular favorite.


Pascal has brought his clean aesthetic to the month, with a number of group shots of multiple drones. I particularly like the alien look of this batch, and the nicely layered background kicks the whole photo up another notch.

Sentinel Drones

Last but certainly not least, Forest King kicked off the month with this atmospheric scene of a drone striketeam conquering a rampart.


Merry Christmas from London, 1941

I have a personal tradition of watching a depressing movie on Christmas Eve; I find it has a nice effect of tempering the holiday festivities with some sobering reality.

Apparently Gabe Umland is similarly inclined. This depiction of London during the Blitz has some gorgeously detailed rubble, with just the right touch of Christmas spirit.

Christmas in London | 1941

It’s a good weekend for tanks

Christmas is in the air, colored lights and holiday shoppers everywhere… It just makes me want to jump into a 60 ton tracked vehicle and go defend Poland. Forget nativity scenes; all I want for Christmas is a massive diorama of the North African Campaign.

Marin Stipkovic posts this beefy Eastern Bloc design, based on a 1948 prototype;


From the same time period but opposite weight class, Intense Potato shares this teensy M3 Stuart;

The East comes roaring back with Nick’s slightly futurized T-90;


But he runs headlong into Alex Zelov‘s Somers-style Abrams;

Abrams Update

And finally, a blast from the past, Jeffrey Mille shares this adorably twee FT 17 from the Great War;