[BLOG] FORMULA BEI: WarShell (More Pics)


th!nk
I've not really had time to comment on this, and I am still struggling to find it, but these are fantastic. Obviously I'm very much looking forward to the next part in particular, but I really lack the words to describe how well-executed your writings are.
@RDF3: cheers! What you're reading in this blog is basically the stuff that won't be in the final WarShell print. You're just getting it for free. I'm trying to slim the book itself down to a reasonable size/cost for printing. Fun times!


(Apr. 18, 2014  2:36 AM)Kai-V Wrote:
(Apr. 18, 2014  2:20 AM)RDF3 Wrote: Hmmm, Takeaki Maeda's work on Transformers is the reason why beyblade has not seen any new releases since 2 years ago, no? Well, hope he gets back to work on the Beyblade line, over 80,000 people here are "Waiting" (including me) for the revival.

No, I would say there are many more reasons, like the economical context : the toy industry in Japan right now is rather bad, and so was it worldwide for Christmas even for Hasbro in 2013, therefore they may still be trying to wait for a next generation of kids instead of trying to salvage those that have already grown quite a lot out of the targeted range.


A fair observation. The report confirms a worldwide downturn in toy sales. Takara-Tomy even made a "loss" last year. Yet we see Transformers, B-Daman (Battroborg) and Pokemon surviving it with massive international campaigns. Downturn or no, they could surely afford to expand/continue Beyblade - if only they wanted to.

So I'd put more weight on the second part alone: targeting a new generation. Remember Maeda does the same job now that Mashimo did at Takara. He oversees all the "boys" toylines - not just Beyblade. If they really are holding off for a new generation, that would largely be Maeda's responsibility.

The only thing we know for absolute certain is that Maeda remade Beyblade - then he stopped working on Beyblade and remade Transformers.


(Apr. 18, 2014  1:56 PM)yt152430 Wrote: This was a good read, never knew there was a b-daman spin top, now i want one


Thanks yt152430, I'm thinking of auctioning off my Blue Bomberman SugeGoma to help pay for the first printing run of the WarShell book. But I warn you - it won't be cheap!

@th!nk: thanks for that, I'll have the next article up sometime this week. Thanks for helping me out with it too.
Kai-V
I am actually not certain B-Daman and Battroborg are selling that well at all. Even then, TAKARA-TOMY only considers them 'medium' toylines, not major ones like Transformers, Beyblade and Pokémon. It is normal that Battroborg could be doing well right now, but they know it is nothing major and it will not last years.
Pity. I really liked the look of their thumbwars version. Weird-guys-in-suits aside, that is!
Kai-V
Their samurai Battroborg line seems cool too, but I think this might become slightly off-topic now, hah.
Kei
Awesome post, once again Beylon. Makes me wish we knew even more about the designers, and what their mindset exactly was each time they set out to design a new Beyblade.

Ah! So Haruhisa Ujita is that guys name ...! I remember seeing him in one of the first videos that was released demonstrating MFB in 2008. He was at the World Championships too.
Manicben
Great work again Beylon.
I noticed a small thing where the patents you listed for the Left Spin "Spin Stealing" grant and the 4D Construction Grant are the same, both leading to the Spin Steal Patent page. That was my only concern, as I skim read through that impressive list of patents. Good job on finding them, kudos to you.
Can't wait to see the next instalments of this blog, including the silver tops from lowen's thread Grin
Beylon
(Apr. 22, 2014  2:41 AM)Kei Wrote: Makes me wish we knew even more about the designers, and what their mindset exactly was each time they set out to design a new Beyblade.

I had hoped to be talking about Kenji Horikoshi this week, examining some of his early work and how it affected the metagame. His later 4D and Zero-G designs are showcased on the WBBA blog - but in very casual Japanese. But I am still checking my facts on the article - and as that's taking far longer than I had imagined, I'll cover some different ground this week instead and get back to Horikoshi next week.

(Apr. 22, 2014  2:41 AM)Kei Wrote: Ah! So Haruhisa Ujita is that guys name ...! I remember seeing him in one of the first videos that was released demonstrating MFB in 2008. He was at the World Championships too.

Very curious indeed. Wish I knew where to find that video; I wasn't around for the 2008 revival, so I missed crucial stuff like that. Thanks for pointing it out!

@Manicben: thanks buddy. I'll update the patent list when I'm through here [EDIT: done!]. Also, it's you're lucky day....


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Another great read I have to say. Lowen's work are THE BEST no doubt. Man, I wish I had the resources he has XD

IMO, It would be amazing if Lowen uses both Metal and Plastic in his designs. With the uproar of 3D printers that could make plastic things, He could recreate newer models of the current MFB line or something. Heck, he could make his own Beyblade line!
Bey Brad
Really fascinating but also terrifying. Would never let a kid anywhere near that thing! haha
Annoying-Fork
Fascinating history, as always. Smile

JAWS would look good as a WBO banner... *grins*
Beylon
New article time! But first, I'd like to reply to some comments. Thanks for commenting at all, guys, I do appreciate it and I'm super glad you like reading my articles. All this is for you! Outside the WBO, I spend a lot of time in the wilderness doing some pretty weird jobs - so I try to juggle replying properly and writing new stuff in equal measure between time and internet availability.


(Apr. 29, 2014  2:45 PM)Synth Wrote: Another great read I have to say. Lowen's work are THE BEST no doubt. Man, I wish I had the resources he has XD IMO, It would be amazing if Lowen uses both Metal and Plastic in his designs. With the uproar of 3D printers that could make plastic things, He could recreate newer models of the current MFB line or something. Heck, he could make his own Beyblade line!


Well, once his new mill is up and running, you can always contact him about some design ideas. His prices are beyond compare for custom work. I remember he did some 3D printed ABS plastic for HMS cores back in the day - but he recently mentioned using carbon fibre, which I personally find much more exciting. I mean really: spaceship materials in Beyblades? What's not to like?! And it's there for the purchasing on his store!


(Apr. 29, 2014  10:13 PM)Bey Brad Wrote: Really fascinating but also terrifying. Would never let a kid anywhere near that thing! haha


Nice! Fascinating but terrifying: I hope everyone comes to see WarShell this way. I figure if you can (are allowed to) use power tools (like a drill, say) then you're not going to have any problem with Beyblades on steroids - even a hammer can be dangerous if you use it wrong.

@Annoying-Fork: if I send you some better pictures, could you maybe make one for me?



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Pokemo
Awesome, but its scary, but I also wish these are allowed in WBO tournaments.
RDF3
For me, each new MFB release improves on the strengths of the previous design as well as alleviating the weakness of the previous design-that's why power creep is insane in MFB. E.g:
Duo improves on Basalt in terms of defense and stamina, as well as lacking the balance problems of Basalt itself. So Duo improved Basalt's strong points and alleviates Basalt's weak points. That for me is why power creep in MFB is crazy like carp.

On the other side, HMS hardly has a power creep (e.g: Grip Flat Core may be faster than Metal Weight Grip Core, but MWGC is easier to control, and as a result both see use.)


Plastics also has very little power creep- example: While Defense Grip Base 2 has lower defense than CGB or CBB, Defense Grip Base 2 offers superior LAD and as a result both of these are competitive.

So Plastics and HMS, as well as MFB's LTD format lacks the power creep that heavily plagues the Standard MFB, and as a result more of us love the LTD Format. Also, the parts of LTD aren't very expensive, and unlike HMS defense doesn't suck carp. Those are probably why we conjured up LTD in the first place.
Bey Brad
Great article about game design concepts in general.

One thing worth mentioning is that many games – Yu-Gi-Oh and Magic: The Gathering come to mind – have official ban lists that rotate out all the time. Even the game's creators can sometimes say, "Well, we went too far – let's fix this." Of course, power creep is something that happens in every collectible game, but it's important to find a balance between making new and improved products and wrecking the game.

The problem with MFB was that it was just amped up way too suddenly, and was cut off before the entire playing field could be "rebalanced." If there were 15 Beyblades as powerful as everything in the Maximum Series, I doubt you'd see so much complaining. But because the toyline went on hiatus shortly after their release, we're stuck with these BeyGods, pretty much.

Making a powerful spinning top is actually pretty easy. The strongest Beyblade would be round, small, heavy, with no projections. Part of what I learned when working on Battle Strikers is that it top design boils down to: start with a circle, and then intentionally make it worse.

Why would anyone do this? Simply put, perfection isn't fun. People aren't playing Beyblade in order to have the strongest Beyblade; they're doing it to have the coolest battles, and to earn those victories. Making a perfectly circular Beyblade is the same as making a card in a game that says, "this card cannot be defeated."

Many of the "best" Battle Strikers in the first Metal XS release were created entirely unintentionally, simply because the design team, lacking an understanding of game balancing, failed to make the top adequately bad relative to its compatriots.

Plastics and, to a lesser extent HMS, didn't suffer from power creep much, but they had the exact opposite problem: after the V2 generation, newly released tops rarely ever bested their predecessors. There's no reason that Zeus shouldn't have had the best Survival-type Beyblade base, but it was limited by its construction system. War Lion, Upper Dragoon, Tiger Claw, Triple Wing, and other older Attack Rings remained fan favourites.

HMS' metagame also ended up being dominated by a very small pool of parts, though perhaps we can blame the series' cancellation for this.
Really enjoying the content and delivery! Each post has been a must to read thoroughly, and good to see the contrast of views about Beyblades / performance spinning tops being openly discussed.

I agree that for younger members Beyblades are more of a toy as toys come and go, but for older members it has become more of a hobby because of the higher understanding and intrigue of how parts interact with each other keeps us enticed and wanting to further pursue better battles and customizations.

From making my own parts I have realised how well designed the initial designs are and appreciate how much testing was involved to decide on sizing, weight and weight distribution. That Driger G I sent you weighed something ridiculous like 190 grams I think, I have experimented with 200, 150, 100, 50 and 25gram weight limits and found that 50 to 100grams provide good battles but don't inflict damage on everything in sight. The problem is plastic parts are too fragile although provide this ideal weight, and steel is too heavy to provide a large choice of part design, lighter modern materials are needed such as aluminium and carbon but are more expensive to manufacture - what was learnt going to MFB from HMS in that lightweight zinc was used to increase part performance but keep the weight and cost to a reasonable range.

Watch the original tv series and you will quickly notice how forceful they become as they progress on with characters getting hospitalized and covered in cuts! Power creep is a massive part of the series, but rather than ban parts they developed new ones and tried out new ideas to overcome the opponent which is the opposite way of achieving the same goal the Limited format is trying to achieve, even if it was in an animated tv series.

Synth: the company I bought my machine from sells an add on 3D printer kit to convert the machine with a few bolts... But as Beylon has stated, carbon fibre is more exotic and it possibly holds a higher impact to battling over 3D printing as the strength is apparent in carbon. To my knowledge carbon fibre, titanium and other exotic modern materials have not been incorporated into spinning tops yet due to the overall image that they are just toys. But with high strength to weight materials safety can be kept tolerable but performance can be tailored to better suit individual's requirements and lead to a whole new phase of performance top development with some passion and investment.

The toy companies have a budget and a cost they need to sell toys at, it attracts a big audience for sales but in the longer term it relies on new parts to keep the audience buying their products, price too high and no one will buy but price too low and they can't afford better materials to make it more interesting. I've tried to prove that what has been achieved with Beyblade as a toy brand is possible for many of the users to be able to think of ways of improving the parts to overcome the "God parts" and turn a toy into a hobby, stimulating thought process but most importantly keeping the initial target audience whilst at the same time accepting the ways in which Beyblades are currently used at tournament level.

I build engines for motorsport use, some racing classes have strict rules to promote driver skill, others have guidelines to promote development. We have our rules class in the form of limited format, but no guideline format...
akio314
Can we use this for our podcast? We've needed stuff to talk about and the history of Beyblade would be great.
Bey Brad
Perhaps somewhat an unpopular or unwelcome opinion, but I'm not crazy about trying to turn Beyblade (or its concept) into a hobby where people are building their own parts and stuff. The things I love about Beyblade – beautiful designs, high level of accessibility, largely infinite system interoperability – are almost all dependent on it being managed and manufactured by a single entity. The idea of non-"toy" spinning tops strikes me as unnecessarily hardcore.
First, i want to thank you for this work, this is amazing, trully amazing as is Lowen93's work. About your point on miniature robotic combat I was also really interested on what the hexbug warriord had to offer. Adding a damage sensor to a simple machine as a vibrobot has a lot of potential. Maybe if they were more efficient on atracting more people to their game we would have another topic for you to develop further articles.

There is the game and the hobby approach, and from my point of wiew, on the hobby lies a doorway for further developement. A game usually becomes a more closed or restricted environment, and as such, reduces the chances for innovation.

I'm one of, the probably many, waiting for Lowen93 to restart his production because I would like to see this hobby to grow and evolve, and also because i think what he builds are beautiful machines. But, after reading this blog and seeing what Silver Tops is doing also feel a bit guilty because i dont actually do much on my own side. I've been tweaking with the commertial parts available, and even promoting some tournaments with any kind of available battle top, but nothing else.

Some of us just become mere spectators while others take an active part, and for this i want to thank you again.
Mitsu
Your work is outstanding as usual, Beylon.

Taking the time and effort to research, and make this wonderful thread really shows what an amazing member you are.

I'll be sure to continuously read chapters. This is quite amazing. (:
TimeOut
I think I must have missed a post, what is warhammer?
username2130
Warhammer is a table top miniatures war game using a really large set of rules, dice and ridiculously small amounts of expensive plastic. Ive been playing for years.
Wow, hey guys, just a quick note: I mentioned earlier that I do a job often requiring me to drop everything and head into the wilderness at short notice... And that's where I've been the past month or so. Got the call, left next day, no contact for weeks and I only got back last night. I've received quite a bit of PM traffic in my absence and I'm glad there's some discussion happening here on the blog - I'm going to get back to everyone personally as soon as I've settled back into the normal swing of things and have the time to give you all good responses. Sorry it's been so quiet - with any luck, things have been moving forward elsewhere in the customs community too. Expect some movement here this week.
Beylon
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Neo
That was very interesting.
I didn't know Bey Brad had anything to do with Battle Strikers. It was a very strange series, I felt a flat arena didn't feel the same as a bowl. Magnets could be done with Beyblades so I never really felt like it was unique per say. Battle Strikers felt like a toy, and it was. Beyblade is a toy, but it doesn't feel like it.