So what’s a build-off, and why should you take part in them?
It’s pretty simple, someone or a group of modelers will suggest something to build, be it a type of kit, a specific kit or even a diorama over an agreed time, or no time limit at all – anything goes. Some groups will choose to do it just for fun, or even with a prize for the most well done. Whatever the rules, you should always take part whenever, and wherever you can. Generally, build-off’s are not competitive and more educational designed to help people improve. They also tend to not have any fixed rule about entering or even finishing a kit. Our Jesta build off from last year is still ongoing! It can be for just 2 people, or many more. Anything goes.
Why? Aside from the obvious test of your skills there is so much more to it. Building in a group enables you to get feedback from other participants in similar situations. Also, the more you interact with others, the more you’ll find friendship and opportunities to help each other out. Build-off’s can offer tests of interaction with other cultures from around the world helping you to better understand your mecha modelling brothers and sisters. It’ll also reveal those who you don’t want to interact with. Starting a closed group and a group chat on facebook is a really handy way to keep track of build-off’s, and for immediate interaction if you’re in a tight spot. It can also be a tremendous laugh, especially if the theme is particularly amusing. It need not be serious at all.
There’s tons of build-off’s going all over the social sphere right now, we’re even talking about doing one in the old gunpla forums facebook page. There’s also one (although the end date is fast approaching) over in the UK Gunpla Modellers group.
There are of course some modelers who only ever do huge, complex projects, commissions or competition standard kits so of course build-off’s won’t be for everyone.
So what are you waiting for? Build-off’s are great for a little relaxed build between bigger more complex projects. Give them a go when you can, and if you’re starting one, let me know!