When the projected started, I (Sam Sears) was using the name “Action Chibi” or “Chibi Action” and Sam Panico took that to heart with his first draft, imagining someone in a skeleton outfit, and really leaning into the Chibi proportions.
Right from the begining the goal was to have stylized fun figures, but ones that could move. I have several toys on my shelf that are stylized, that I wish weren’t statues, and my son does too. Sam helpfully added articulation cuts too.
I thought Sam’s skull was perfect, it hit the mark right off the bat. I absolutely want to revist the skull print on a body idea in the future, but I was thinking a more actual skeleton… of course that meant some challenges in how to get those thin parts to articulate.
I got to photoshopping.
Pluderlings are property of Lone Coconut and The Boss Fight Skeleton is property of Boss Fight Studios. I backed both on kickstarters, and this image was created only to provide Sam Panico and Donman art some inspiration. No one elses art was used in the actual creation of Reasonably Chibi’s skeletons. It is also worth noting the final figure will be taller than intended at this stage.
Some photoshoping and feedback, Sam got back to work and produced some turn arounds.
With these Esteban from Donman Art got to work
Here is a pic of a very early stage 3D render where we were getting the proportions nailed down.
Maintaining just the right proportions to feel playful, but not too silly, caused us to adjust arm length, and ultimately the final size of the figure came in at 5″ but my kids loved the slightly increased size, so we kept it.
The final product had plenty of articulation.
LightBeam 3d has done work for the big guns, and with recommendations from folks like Jason at Spero toys, and freelancer Adam Freeman, I went to them for our first prototype, and loved the result.
Assembling it gave me insight on which joints needed reinforced or altered. So we made additional adjustments after that.
One of the most exciting features of the Skeletons was the ability to remove most of the skull and hide something inside. This actually helped finalize story elements in The Templar’s Survive Beneath us. Initially my thoughts were magnets, or brains, like the small brain you see from McFarlane Toys Mortal Kombat Baraka or even small led lights.
Now a “rider” is being sculpted. To find out more on those, at least for now, you will have to read or listen to our original fiction.
While Esteban was at work with the sculpt, I was also at work with some ideas for repaints.