Here at the BionicleMOCers’League, we strive to uphold a high standard for the MOCs that we accept. Of course ‘a high standard’ is incredibly qualitative, but here we’ve outlined five key attributes which will, hopefully, both define what makes a good MOC and help people whose MOCs may not make it into our gallery.Creativity
is, in our humble opinion, where most people fall short. The whole sticking-to-what-Lego-showed-you won’t get you any brownie points if you simply swap an armour piece here and there. Try using pieces where they wouldn’t normally be used, try to break free from the ‘skeleton plus armour’ building style that Lego has taught you, experiment with new pieces. How can you use a piece in a way that’s never been used before? Can you design something that the world hasn’t seen yet? It’s these clever additions that really give MOCs their spark.
We have to remember that MOCs aren’t static sculptures; their articulation
allows them to move. It might be hard to show this in pictures, but how sturdy is your MOC? How strongly are the pieces attached together? Will it fall over or break when you move it? Some builds are made purely for aesthetics, in which case strength might not be a top priority, but if your MOC is able to pull off several different poses, it all adds to its character – in fact, you could even include good ol’ functions, like the early days of Bionicle!
Now, having a Toa with fully custom armour and weaponry is all fine and dandy, but what is a gallery without some variation
? A good MOCer is one who can succeed in all areas: big and small, humanoid and creature, Bionicle and Hero Factory. Having a wide range of different styles makes your gallery vastly more interesting – people will get bored if they see the same mecha over and over again. There’s nothing wrong with a well-built Hero, but here at the BML we love accepting things of different shapes and sizes!
If anything, consistency
is a factor that really gives a MOC flair. Does the MOC itself seem natural? Is the colour scheme sound? More advanced MOCers would go even further – what kind of texture does this MOC have? Organic or mechanical? Blocky or smooth? Intricate details or simplicity? Sometimes it's good to have colours spread equally around a MOC, while at other times it's best to focus them in particular areas. Equal (or intentionally unequal!) distribution of characteristics shows that a MOCer has paid attention to the design as a whole, and taken the entire picture into account.
Finally, the last hurdle which trips up far too many people is presentation
. We understand that not everyone can afford fancy high-definition cameras, but you can still make an effort to make the background as clear as possible (or even create scenery!). Blurriness and backgrounds aren’t the only things that can ruin a good MOC, though. How many pictures do you want to show us? Several poses and angles, or one simple photo? Do you want to display them separately, or in a collage? This is, after all, deviantArt
, where making good first impressions is essential.
Of course, no-one is perfect – that includes us BML admins. You also have to remember that everybody starts off as a beginner, so obviously you can’t expect fantastic results right from the get-go. I hope this advice helped you advance as a builder, or at least have a better understanding of the MOCing community. Thanks for reading, and happy MOCing!