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MJOLNIR Mark V[B]

By Tekka-Croe
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Practice with rapidly working up character illustrations.

The MkV[B] is unique in that it's the only Bungie-era MJOLNIR design that I've actually grown to like less the more I've looked at it.  It's got a few areas that seem almost as cluttered and unfocused as many of 343i's armor designs in Halo 4 (though Reach's more realistic aesthetic does a better job of hiding it), and I used this as an opportunity to try to address my problems with the design.

-The changes to the helmet are purely a matter of taste.  I've always felt that the default MkV[B] helmet was sort of like the RGM-79 GM to the "real" MkV's RX-78-2 Gundam- it's clearly built on the same design ethos, but it just looks kind of bland and cheap.  I took a couple cues from the classic MkV while trying to preserve essential parts of the design like the visor shape and the overall cut of the mouth-guard and cheeks.
-The biggest problem area with the official MkV[B] design (in my opinion) was the lower-forward section of the armored "roll cage" around the chest.  On the final game asset it just seems like a mess of angles that don't fit together properly, with odd triangular cut-outs and a series of awkward, irregular zigzags along the bottom edge.  I tried to preserve the most important details, such as the forward-oriented planes with shield emitters on them, while cleaning up the overall shapes.
-My other problem area with the original design was the thigh plating.  It was originally smooth, curvy and contoured, and it stuck out like a sore thumb in a design which was otherwise all flat planes and hard angles.  This wasn't difficult to address, I just planed off the forward thigh plating.
-The other changes are relatively minor: I tried to clean up and streamline some of the details of the bicep and gauntlet plating, and tried to make the lower greaves look like a series of interlocking components.  The bodysuit is just whatever, as I was focused on the plating.  The official Reach bodysuit is pretty much fine, anyway.

Halo belongs to Microsoft.
Artwork by :icontekka-croe:
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Comments24
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Rygartkrasnaya's avatar
I like this, make MKV[B] look more like... well a damned MKV
The goofy conspiratorial part of me half-suspects that the Mark V[B] was deliberately meh so we'd be eager to go and get Six's armor customized.
Avak1827's avatar
I've been wanting to get a commission from you on a idea of a armor set for my own story, but the more you work the more I'm finding answers to some of my own design problems. I kinda wish I had more of a grasp on armor design because I'm alright but i find myself always annoyed I can't get the profile I want or the details to fit just right. 

Maybe in the future for one of your commissions or as a challenge I could talk to you about it. 
Zerg170's avatar
nice, I always liked  The MkV[B]
The-Chronothaur's avatar
Pretty much 100% agreed about the [B]'s shortcomings. I appreciate the variability but the classic Halo CE version comes off as more wholesome of a design in its own right. I actually think some of the concept art had stronger design elements going on than what ended up in the final game (especially in regard to the lower legs). Also, I really like what you've done here, especially the thigh plating and the forearms. It really does look like a proper "fix" to the issues with the design and it's hard to think of anything else to add.
Tekka-Croe's avatar
It's weird.  Like you say, most of the problem areas on the finished asset actually look fine in Hannaford's 2D concepts.  It's a mystery to me how so many awkward, rough details were introduced in the modeling process.
The-Chronothaur's avatar

Indeed. My main gripes with the [B] were always mostly the forearms and lower legs, especially since they looked so good in the concept art. I hadn't actually paid as much attention to the thighs, but now that you mention it, it's hard to unsee the glaring issue there. Looking at some of those original concepts now, Hannaford actually seems to have realized the issue with the thigh armor and separated the forward plane from the side one; somehow it just got lost in translation to the final game (kind of like the lower legs - I liked the boxiness there).


 

What's your opinion on the Mark VI-style overlapping layers of padding in the inner thighs as opposed to the classic Mark V's solution? I've kind of gone back and forth on that in my depictions and can see the positives to both -- the original Mk. V's inner thigh design sort of works better with the more angular shapes of the armor itself IMO, while the [B]'s overlapping plates seem like they're meant for a more organic-looking design (like the Mark VI).

TheCourtDroll's avatar
Always loved the Mk V design... you did a great job redesigning the helmet! I think it looks even better this way.
SirRinge's avatar
Real nice job on the lighting and colours (:
vicinit's avatar
Noble Six is gone but not forgotten. Spartans never die
Ryanator50's avatar
seems that sometimes less is more. Halo Reach had more tactical pockets than Rob Leifeld's sketchbook.
Just-Rube's avatar
my second favorite set next to the 3 style odst. oooh man youre treating me
Ragashingo's avatar
Look! A Mark V! 
abdamit's avatar
You sure, you don't aspire to be the art-director for the future of Halo?
because you, sir, are the most fitting for this job in my oppinion!
Savoretti's avatar
Your art style makes MJOLNIR armor look absolutely perfect
Brand-194's avatar
Clean artwork~ :D
FotusKnight's avatar
Mmm! Love what you did with the helmet! This variant is even better than the original IMO. Slick.
sh8dneji's avatar
really cool, now just throwing this out there...what do you think if the suit had an extra set of arms that were controlled by the on suit AI? Would it be too nonhuman or just too weird for the setting?  
Jeager111's avatar
please make the SPI armor of the Spartan 3 Love 
jijisnum10's avatar
YAY! ARMOR! ART! YAY! I really like your armor designs. In everything. Armor is my favorite. I have never played much halo, but I love the game. What program do you use for your art?
sanbi17's avatar
If offered. Would you work as an art lead for 343? I think they need it, not so much with the Halo Wars 2 art direction which i felt was great, but for the rest
BossVeteran's avatar
Damm Tekka, you work never stop of making me spechless

First was your two re-designs of the Mark V ( definitly my favorites of all the art have you ever made )
and now you come with this piece, everything on it its just glorious to see, every little detail, hell you made me like the armor..just a bit haha

Really really outstanding job on this -w-b
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