Snatcher - Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

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nick daring

Sr Member
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Before Metal Gear Solid took over the world of video games, Hideo Kojima created an story based cyberpunk adventure game called Snatcher. The game blatantly combined elements of Terminator, Blade Runner and Akira into a big weird futuristic detective melodrama that was released on the Sega CD. Fun, mind blowing stuff for a nerdy American kid in 1994 (The original Japanese version was released in 1988!)



In the game you are accompanied by a Navigator, a small robot partner kinda like R2-D2 and a tricorder combined.

His name is "Metal Gear MkII" and about a year ago I decided I wanted to make him.



He's about the size and shape of a chicken.


And he has a big CRT monitor strapped to his side for you to use as a computer and as a vid-phone in the game.



First step in a project like this is always research. I went through the game and screengrabbed every appearance that the robot makes in the game.



I also found that the old Japanese manuals, merchandise and promo material had some awesome artwork and blueprints used in the development of the game! This was crazy helpful since the actual game artwork was extremely inconsistent in the robot's appearance.

Stuff like this is invaluable!-

View attachment 90386

View attachment 90385

Much thanks to the fine folks at JUNKER HQ (.net) for the great scans. In fact you can follow my initial research on the forums there- Junker HQ - View topic - Metal Gear MKII Research

I even started gathering screencaps from older versions of the game where the artwork was different from the "Standard" Sega CD version in order to get every offical appearance of the robot. In the end I ended up with a giant page of reference material that looked like this-



I was now pretty much armed with all the info that existed on this character. It was time for a "proof of concept" to make sure this thing looked cool in 3D and that spending months building the full size version would be worth the effort in the end.

Nick
 
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nick daring

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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Build

I wanted to make sure i understood all the forms of this strangely designed robot so I quickly built a small 5 inch model of the robot out of super sculpey and armature wire.























The cool thing about making this test at this size it matches up with the robot from the Japanese-only RPG style remake of the game called "SD Snatcher".





So now my test is also a game prop as well!

Nick
 
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nick daring

Sr Member
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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

Onto the full size replica!

But how big is this guy?

I went through all the game reference that had another human and pulled those images together-


It looks like he comes up to about the knee level when his head is retracted.

My working height is at about 18 inches.

I also kept in mind what would look good on top of a shelf as well.

Here's a graphic showing the new Metal Gear MkII from MGS4 next to models from an upcoming fan remake of Snatcher comparing the sizes.





The Metal Gear MkII's design is funny. He's kinda like a Blade Runner SPinner mixed with ED-209.



Total 80's style robot.

In fact the design is a self homage to the original Metal Gear game's boss.




Hence the "MkII". It's even referenced in the game's dialogue which technically makes Snatcher take place in the Metal Gear Solid universe. Weird, huh?

Nick
 
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nick daring

Sr Member
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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

Next I wanted to make a quick cardboard mock up of the fullsize. Am I being overly cautious? Maybe.

Nonetheless, here we go.















It's big but not too big.

Also the monitor's screen works out to where a 5.6 LCD Screen should fit in fairly nicely. More on that later.

Next up a I dropped into Adobe Illustrator and made finalized working blueprints that combined the various elements from my previous research. This was a lot harder than it sounds even though I had those awesome Japanese blueprints to work from. The game graphics still vary from the blueprints quite a bit at different times and in different ways and I wanted to try and capture the character in the game and not what the original design guy wished it had looked like. The blueprints even have problems with matching up from the front view to the side view. For instance, the right side of the Monitor Box is never shown except in the rough early design sketches. Some liberties were be taken to work out all the details.





I broke up the sections into separate pieces that could be printed out and glued onto sheets of MDF.



If you spray the adhesive and let it sit for a minute before applying them to the board the bond is temporary. Like a strong post-it note.

Next I jigsawed them into a stack of parts and began gluing the pieces together!





Yup, you guessed correctly. I'm doing this Volpin style. All hail Volpin. :)

Nick
 

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nick daring

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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

Going back to the LCD screen I mentioned earlier. For this robot I wanted some minimal functionality. A few LED's on the head and body and a working screen of some sort.

Here's how the screen fits into the space-


The left and right are slightly cropped and there's a few milimeter gap on top and bottom. With a dark screen on top the gaps should dissapear and the graphics I'm planning shouldn't require the those side spaces. All is good.

Searching around on Ebay, I found a cheap digital frame that displays Jpgs, MP3s, and Video! I bought 2 for about 15 bucks each if I remember correctly. I don't have much electronics experience so I was afraid I might destroy one taking them apart so having a spare on hand makes me worry a little less.









I originally planned on just having the robot display a photo gallery of screengrabs from the game or even edited graphics that match up with what the robot would be showing in the game, but with this video and sound capable frame I can have Metal Gear speak lines from the game, play the soundtrack or even have the entire game play out in video form!

It also is controlled by a remote. Classy.

If all goes well, I'd love to have full PC built into it. That way you could actually play the game on the robot in emulator form. How fun would that be?! The ultimate PC Mod!

You could even have the PC control more elaborate sound, video and even head animatronics. That's a ways off still though since I'm not a PC builder.

Metal Gear MkII Version 1 comes first. Keep it simple and upgrade later.

Nick
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

I'm officially in love with this thread. I was looking into making one from Snatcher and Metal gear (and making one a metal gear). I'm going to keep watching this and now i want to see that fan remake lol. If you offer castings where we can add our own electronics i'll be all over it. Keep up the good work. have ou also looked for screencaps from the playstation remake? This game needs reissues with Policenauts.

Edit: I always though the Mk 2 in Snatcher was knee high to the other characters.
 
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nick daring

Sr Member
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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

If you've read any of the Volpin builds you know what comes next.

Insulation Foam.

I traced out the needed shapes and cut them out on the jig saw.


Glued them down with woodglue since it was handy. This stuff stayed wet for a while since it needs air to dry but it got the job down. Maybe contact cement next time? Not sure what would be optimal without melting the foam. Maybe hot glue. :/



Using a coping saw I bring the foam closer to where it should be.




The little Ryobi Mouse sander does short work of that nasty chunky foam.









More sanding...









And the triangular side box is glued together, primered and sanded smooth, primered, sanded smooth, primered... until it looks right.


I want that 80's rounded off "friendly tech" feel to all the pieces so all the edges got sanded down heavily.

Panel lines were scratched into the primer and wood with a pointed file.




I stole this technique from SteveNeil's awesome build threads and videos.

Hopefully it's deep enough and clean enough to make me happy.

Nick
 
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Woodlake

Well-Known Member
Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

I have no idea what a snatcher robot is, but really enjoying the build Nick!
 

Sundowner

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

Man I've really enjoyed reading through your build!
 

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PoopaPapaPalps

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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

This is a great build; gotta love Snatcher. This is funny because, coincidentally, I'm working on two gun builds from Snatcher at the moment.
 

Wes R

Legendary Member
Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

And the triangular side box is glued together, primered and sanded smooth, primered, sanded smooth, primered... until it looks right.


I want that 80's rounded off "friendly tech" feel to all the pieces so all the edges got sanded down heavily.

Panel lines were scratched into the primer and wood with a pointed file.





Nick
This thing looks factory made you did such a good job. Man now i wanna buy a sega cd and replay the game :lol Poopapapapalps (that's a mouthful): did you do a wip for the snatcher guns? Nick: you should do a life sized Snatcher next lol.
 

PoopaPapaPalps

Master Member
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Re: Snatcher- Metal Gear MkII Robot Build

^ My Random Hajile blaster is nothing more of a retro-fitted toy shotgun (in-game, it says his gun is just an old shotgun bought from the black market and just modified to shoot lasers) and I didn't think it'd be all to interesting seeing someone just take some artistic license with a toy.

But as my Junker blaster progresses I'll be sure to put up a WIP.
 

nick daring

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
More shaping and sanding to nail the tricky shape of the body and head. Subtle organic curves.

Then coated in a layer of acrylic paint to protect the foam from the body filler.





Nick
 

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nick daring

Sr Member
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I hope it turns out awesome! I'm basically using a bunch of building techniques that I've only read about for the first time.

I think I've got a solid plan though.

The digital frame I'm using to run the monitor will also play MP3s making him him talk essentially. Lie I said earlier I hope eventually install a full PC or perhaps an Arduino controller for more functionality.

Nick
 

LeMarchand

Sr Member
Love it!!!!! :) :) :)

SD Snatcher and Snatcher have been the most influantial games in my life and sparked my love for anime and cyberpunk :)
 

Laffo

Sr Member
Nick,
Try some of this stuff for your pink insulation. It makes the stuff bullet proof. It also has a tooth so bondo stick to it AND it seals it so you can use a solvent based paint or poly on it.
And it's cheap and goes a long way and is water based.

Hot Wire Foam Factory

Used it on some pink foam feet and it's held up as good as fiberglass.
Laffo.
 

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