The Greatest Movie Villain Contest

Shmails, from Brickforge and CustomMinifigs.com, is hosting a contest with some pretty amazing prizes. All three are concept characters for CustomMinifigs.com with Brickforge prototypes! We haven't seen these pieces anywhere else and as of now this is the only place to get them.

The contests starts today and runs until April 15, so you have a month and a half to get your entries in. Start customizing your villains today!

For more info please visit the Brickforge forums by clicking here.

In related news, The Ugly Duckling's Minifig Design Battle - Samurai Sho(w)down is already halfway complete so don't forget to get your entries in before March 16th.


  1. Just one note: those aren't prototypes but first articles of new Brickforge production molds (basically the first tests done of a mold in development). The designs themselves are final; the only real changes that could occur are polishing and other small alterations to the cavities.

    I suppose "prototype" is being used to create a bit of extra hype, but considering these items are being produced by what's going to be used as the production mold, the term really doesn't apply!

  2. Actually, It is you who do not understand the word "prototype". Allow me to assist (from Wikipedia):

    "A prototype is an early sample or model built to test a concept or process or to act as a thing to be replicated or learned from."

    Prototypes are not made to be sold, or given away at shows, they are used by companies (internally) to perfect a design and ensure proper size, shape, and color. If these are not prototypes (nowhere did i say they were BF prototypes), what would you call them?

    BF uses prototypes to create better designs for our customers, others use them as hype-machine fodder!


  3. 'BF uses prototypes to create better designs for our customers, others use them as hype-machine fodder!'

    Pot, meet kettle.

  4. I would call them exactly what they are - first articles of a new production mold. No "concept or process" is being tested nor can the design be altered that much given the cavity has already been cut. Polishing and other small refinements can change some aspects of the accessories (tightness of some fits, finish on the part etc), but the overall design is fixed.

    As for referring to these items, you've stated:

    "the bottle is neither LEGO nor Playmobile. It is a concept prototype."

    "includes Prototype vile and flask"

    In regards for prototypes not being used for the ways you described above, what better way to ensure new designs are something the building community will truly enjoy by making prototype versions of those accessories available for builders to test and give feedback on? It's been my absolute pleasure to give away thousands of BrickArms prototypes over the years, and apart from the fun of having something unique and new to share with builders, their comments and feedback on those prototypes have been key as Will continued to develop those designs into their finalized state. That exactly fit the description you post above - tests of a concept to be learned from and then replicated en mass via production accessories!

    I think it's wonderful you're making these first articles available with these figures as something fun, but I think also think there's true value in being honest about their nature, especially given how vocal some have previously been about the entire concept of showcasing accessories at the prototype stage.

  5. What is a prototype if not the first attempt towards what the final item will look like? And yes, these do differ from the end product so the winners will be receiving entirely unique items in addition to the skillfully created figs.

  6. Well here is an interesting question. I have lewis gun and needler prototypes, which are now in production. Do they still count as prototypes? This particular BF mold may be in production, but the color certainly isn't.

    Regardless of how they are labeled, they are still perdy pieces. Who cares if they are prototypes or non production tests.

    And shmails, you're my homie and all that, but you did say they are BF prototypes in their flickr descriptions. :P

    And I digress.


  7. 'differ from the end product' can mean a lot or a little. Well all watching and waiting to see if you add printing to the items to call them 'different' then what we see here. Im excited!

  8. Omi, your BA Lewis Gun and BA Needle Gun (and the tons of other protos I've given you over the years) are still prototypes. The ones you have collected represent a phase of model design BEFORE the production mold was cut.

    Prototypes are made from DIFFERENT injection molds than the production molds.

    Omi, if all BF is doing is running a production mold in an exclusive color, that STILL doesn't make them prototypes. I know BF likes to call each color of their product as 'unique items', most people know better.

    It seems like this thread is trying to sidestep the whole prototype DESIGN issue, and cast this as some kind of a prototype COLOR issue.

    If so, we're all smarter than that. Our CUSTOMERS are smarter than that. Just call it what it is: If Redbean ran the first-articles in trans-clear, and he sent you some to use in this contest, just say so. No one will think any less of you, Schmails, and they will still enter your contest.

  9. Yes, the final product can differ a lot or very little from the original concept. However, if it varies too much then it probably should be classified as a new/different item entirely.

    What Badger nor Will seem seem to understand is that we absolutely do re-cut/retool the cavities if changes are to be made. And for this batch of items, half of the cavities were re-cut to accommodate noticable improvements.

    Prototyping has several stages: from real-life examples to concept sketches to clay models to pre-production material samples until finally you hit the end product. We didn't think the winners would appreciate concept drawings or clay models, so we went with pre-production prototypes of which only 5 sets exist.

    This whole thing seems awfully silly to have begun a discussion about, really. Especially here.

  10. I understand Will, just wanted to see where semantics stands.

    And damn never thought I'd end up between a debate with badger and will against shmails and armothe. :P


  11. As I said above, I'm perfectly aware (as is Will) that new tools can go through several rounds of refinement (additional cutting, polishing). Again, that doesn't change the nature of parts (first articles and tests as opposed to prototypes). Developing a tool to fit the specifics of a design isn't the same as developing the design in the first place.

    I apologize if you find this "silly," but honesty is something important to me and I've personally never found or felt a need to mislead anyone when discussing custom items. I noticed an error, and I sought to address it politely as well as give the community some information about how custom parts are produced. Still, I believe we've both made our respective points clear at this point and that should close the matter.

  12. What's silly is I don't recall you or Will peering over my shoulder as BF products are being developed. For all you know we have the exact same equipment setup/process as BrickArms.

    Even according to Will's definition these are indeed prototypes.

    You are the one misleading the fans. Winners will be receiving early production samples from our next series of items. They differ in several ways from the final set of accessories.

    Thank you for raining on our parade. I can only hope your comments don't deter fans from entering the contest and winning some great prizes.

  13. Wow! This is a crazy discussion going on here! I have one question, why is this such a big deal, when both company's have used "prototypes" in such broad context?! Anyway I think both custom company's are great and I'm sure Cygnet is going to be real interested in this debate.

  14. "why is this such a big deal, when both company's have used "prototypes" in such broad context?! "

    It is a difference in view and opinion, as you can see that both owners of the companies are the ones posting. :P


  15. 'For all you know we have the exact same equipment setup/process as BrickArms.'.

    Well, since you've gone there, I'll respond again. It seems you are still fuzzy on the whole "prototype" thing. I'll educate you.

    No, Kyle, we do not have the exact same equipment. As far as I know, you neither own nor operate ANY prototyping equipment. And no, the local community college's 3D printer does not count.

    I design my own parts in CAD, I own and operate a CNC mill, as well as a pneumatic injection molder, which are all used to produce injection molded prototypes.

    "First articles", are not prototypes. Say it with me again: "First articles" are not prototypes.

    'Even according to Will's definition these are indeed prototypes.'

    No, first articles from a production mold are never prototypes. You know that, as well as I. That you insist on calling your prototypes only shows me that you are still a bit fuzzy on the process of producing injection molded products. I suppose if you cut molds or injected prototypes yourself, you'd be able to comment on that subject, but simply making drawings and submitting them to China to have someone else draft your parts, doesn't qualify you.

    'Winners will be receiving early production samples from our next series of items.'

    Yes, not prototypes. By jove I think he's got it!

  16. Will, grow up. This is a post about a BF contest. You know better than to post here. Cygnet was kind enough to report on it and frankly I'm appalled that it's turned into this. Shmails and I should have ignored Badger in the first place.

  17. I always welcome healthy discussion and debate, but I ask that we table this for now...