Introduction: 16-Bit Penny Arcade Figurines (Gabe and Tycho)

About: Matthew was previously a STEAM integrator with a private K-8 school. He loves taking things apart to see how they work, and will sometimes put those things back together. Much of his time is spent working with…
I'm very excited about Penny Arcade's On The Rain-slick Precipice of Darkness Three, and when I offered to make Penny Arcade some 3D prints of anything they might want, they just happened to have 16-bit modeled versions of Gabe and Tycho ready.

I'm not sure what process Penny-Arcade used to create these characters, but I do know the process I would use.  The following is how I would create something similar to what Penny Arcade has already created.

In my imagination, it's very simple to create your very own 16-bit character.
  1. Open any 3D modeling software that you're comfortable with (or find a friend with the appropriate skills)
  2. Create a cube (this might be the easiest thing to create in any modelling software).
  3. Copy and paste that cube again and again, and slowly build up your 16-bit character.
    • For this step, ensure that your cubes overlap a little bit, or when the 3D printer prints your rendered file, it'll create a whole bunch of unconnected cubes, and if you want to build a model that way, you should just buy Lego's.
    • Also, if you want to easily identify the separation between the cubes in the final rendering, we'd recommend adding a small bevel to each of the edges on your cubes (if you're copying and pasting all your cubes, like a smart person, you'll only have to do this once).
  4. Save your model in a format compatible with whatever printer or printing company you're going to send it to.
  5. Wait for model to print or be sent to you.
  6. If it's not printed in color, paint it with the appropriate colors.
  7. Revel in your 3D printed characters!

See. Super easy!

I added some text to quite a few of the images that I thought might be helpful. Enjoy!
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