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Frostpunk Automaton

Model of a robot from the Frostpunk game. Features 20 points of articulation.


Completion date: 03/03/2021
Power: none
Remote control: none
Dimensions: length 34 studs / width 15 studs / height 42 studs
Weight: 0.256 kg
Motors: none

It’s good to try building something different every now and then, which is why I’ve built this static model of an Automaton unit from the Frostpunk video game. In the game, Automatons are massive robots that can be found by exploration or built in a dedicated building, and their purpose is to work around the clock and replace human workers. Their distinctive feature are the enormous, spindly legs which they move one by one when walking.

My model was entirely static, but featured a total of 20 points of articulation (5 per leg). The “foot” sections of all legs could also have been retracted or extended, and the entire legs could swivel around by 90°.

And yes, I did some research on the feasibility of building a motorized version that could actually walk, but for a number of reasons it did not seem feasible:

  • the center of gravity is placed very high and the feet are pretty close to each other, causing immanently poor stability; adding heavy stuff such as motors and power supplies at the top would drastically lower the already poor stability
  • there is very little room at the top for motors, power supplies and mechanisms. It’s quite possible that to fit all that in there without compromising the looks, the model would need to be 2 meters tall or more, which in turn would cause an entire array of problems with weight and stress
  • synchronizing the legs to maintain stability is problematic, to say least. In order to walk on four legs in a reasonably stable manner, the model would require to keep three legs on the ground while the fourth leg is moving. In order to walk, these three legs would also need to perform some motion while the fourth leg is moving. This leads to a variety of issues with synchronizing all legs, moving them in a sequence, backlash between them and so on

All things considered, I believe that a walker moving in a similar manner can be built with LEGO pieces, and I may give it a try in the future, but it would need to look quite different from the in-game model.


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