At first glance, you might think you’re looking at Optimus Prime sporting Rodimus Prime’s maroon color scheme and pinstripes from the original Transformers. Think again. This semi-truck is way more than meets the eye because it is a LEGO Creation of Rhino from M.A.S.K., the signature shape-shifting tractor rig/mobile defense unit from the 1985 Kenner toy line and animated series. Builder Hobbestimus actually made this his third version of Rhino, now complete with almost all the specs of its retro counterpart: battering ram, smokestack cannons, missile launcher (doesn’t actually launch), mobile computer command center, and detachable all-terrain vehicle, according to his Flickr page.
A key concept of the Transformers line is for things to be “more than meets the eye.” Builder Moko has made something that really fits the brief. This LEGO storage crate is actually a fierce fighting robot.
First, let’s examine that outer shell. The decorations on the face of the cube are from printed 2×2 wedge tiles, a code tile from an EXO-FORCE set, and a number 7 tile from a 1991 Technic 8838 Shock Cycle set. Beyond that, it’s…just a box. I can easily imagine this being part of the background in some massive LEGO hanger diorama and never giving it a second thought. That’s some impressive camouflage.
But, with a few twists and turns (detailed in Moko’s blog post), this cube unfolds into a really cool robot. The necessary joints to cram the robot into a cube has the side effect of giving it a high level of articulation. It doesn’t feel like there was an inch of wasted space in this build. It may be a simple thing, but I also really like the choice of a transparent light-blue tile for the eyes. The color choices here really pop.
So the next time you see a bunch of boxes sort of shoved off to the side of a display, look again. You might just be in for a heck of a surprise.
Packing LEGO creations for a convention can be a tricky proposition. Some builders construct custom-made crates out of wood and foam, while others carefully wrap their masterworks in clothing in their carry-on. I cram 50 or 60 model cars into cardboard boxes and hope for the best and “the best” often involves hours of re-building and frustration. Chris Yu says hogwash to all of that with this brilliant LEGO creation that packs itself. It is impressive enough in suitcase mode with its outer shell outfitted in a Classic Space motif and made to resemble a piece of carry-on luggage.
See more of this transforming moonbase