The Best BB-8 Fan Build We’ve Seen!

We’re blown away by the advancements made in BB-8 fan builds, as we meet the best remote controlled BB-8 replica we’ve seen so far at this year’s SiliCon convention! Team members Psy DeLacy and Chris Stroud walk us through the design choices they made for their droid build, including the ways they give their BB-8 character through head motion and dynamic sound.

Psy DeLacy: CAD Engineering/Design and structural engineering. Chris Stroud: Software/Electrical Engineering. Matt Hobbs: Manufacturing Engineer. David Ferreira: Mechanical Engineer

Lifelike Animatronic Facehugger Practical Effects Puppet!

We meet effects artist Jesse Velez of Raptor House Effects, whose team created this animatronic Alien Facehugger for the 40th anniversary theatrical re-release of Alien back in 2018. Engineered from 14 servo motors that drive mechanical linkages along each “finger”, this creature creeps alive with three remote control operators puppeting its mesmerizing movements. Jesse gives us a demo of this practical creature effect at SiliCon!

To see videos of the mechanical understructure in action, visit http://www.raptorhousefx.com and click on REELS. Design Lead, Sculpt, Skin, and Paint by Jesse Velez. Mechanical Design by Cameron Boyce. Thanks to Mike of PropsToHistory for the puppeting assist!

Let’s Build: Solar System Mechanical Orrery Kit!

We assemble this working orrery designed by MOC brick designer Jason Allemann of JK Brickworks! This 865-piece build is composed of CaDa bricks, which worked with Jason to release his design. We marvel at the mechanical complexity and accurate representation of the Earth, Moon, and Sun’s rotation and relative orbits!

Solar System Orrery, JK Brickworks design

Disclosure: This device was provided by the manufacturer for purposes of review.

LEGO Horizon Forbidden West Tallneck Lighting Kit Build!

We assemble the recently released LEGO Tallneck from Horizon Forbidden West, and install a lighting kit that makes this one of the coolest LEGO diorama models we’ve put together! Here’s how smartly placed spotlighting accentuates the sense of scale in this miniature. Plus, it’s a perfect opportunity to test a new probe lens we’re using this month!

LEGO Tallneck, Light My Bricks lighting kit.

Star Wars Vintage Action Figure Guides!

While we’ve been enjoying the incredible Light & Magic documentary series about the history of ILM, we dive into the storied history of Star Wars action figures with three books that catalog those iconic vintage toys. From comprehensive visual guides to prototype deep dives, these are coffee books we’re happy to get lost in!

Gus and Duncan’s Guide to Star Wars Prototypes, The Vintage Collection Archive Edition, Star Wars: The Ultimate Action Figure Collection.

Making a Custom Figure Display Case with LED Spotlights!

As our collections of figures, 3D prints, and LEGO builds continue to grow, our display solutions need to keep up! Norm assembles the Moducase Sixth100 display case designed for sixth-scale figures, and then puts together his own take on a custom display case using MakerBeam XL aluminum rails, cut acrylic, and dimmable LED spotlights. What are your own display solutions?

Moducase Sixth110 Display case, MakerBeam XL rails, Xking mini LED spotlights, Tap Plastics custom cut acrylic, Ikea Detolf display case, Ikea Regissor cabinet. Disclaimer: Tested may earn an affiliate commission when you buy through the links here.

How To Be an Action Figure—Hasbro Selfie Series Hands-On!

We go hands-on with an exclusive first test of Hasbro’s upcoming Selfie Series that allows you to put your own face on a 6-inch action figure! Here’s how the app works to create a 3D scan of your head, and the customization options for hair, color, and your figure body of choice. We take a close look at the resin 3D print quality of these made-to-order portraits and discuss the technology that makes these custom figures possible.

Learn more about Hasbro’s Selfie Series figures

Hyperreal Marvel Sculptures at Comic-Con 2022!

We had to do a double take at these incredibly lifelike sculptures of Spider-Man, Dr. Strange, Loki, and Captain America on display at this year’s Comic-Con. They’re the work of Queen Studios, and we learn how their artists create these hyperreal silicone busts with the likeness of the actors and costumes from our favorite Marvel films.

Sideshow Booth Tour at Comic-Con 2022!

We tour the Sideshow booth at this year’s Comic-Con to check out the newest Hot Toys sixth-scale and quarter-scale prototype figures revealed and shown off for the first time in person! From Star Wars to DC and Marvel’s universe of characters, here are the sculpts and diorama pieces that caught our eye. Check out that incredible sixth-scale Mandalorian N-1 Starfighter!

Find these Hot Toys and more at Sideshow

Lifelike Animatronic Grogu Puppet at Comic-Con 2022!

The highlight of Comic-Con 2022 so far is this fully animatronic Grogu from EFX Collectibles, designed by the engineers and artists at Garner Holt Productions. We get up close with this incredible animated puppet, which uses 15 servos to recreate all of the character’s joyful expressions seen in The Mandalorian. Star Wars fans at San Diego Comic-Con have to check this out!

EFX Collectibles (Comic-Con booth 3635), Garner Holt Productions, Garner Holt’s Animatronic Lincoln