I decided to try my hand at building my own version of McCree’s belt buckle from Overwatch! I used references from the game in order to create a comprehensive digital model which I then 3D printed, smoothed, molded, cast, mounted to a buckle blank, painted, and weathered. Start to finish (and with lots of breaks in-between!), this entire process took me a little over three years to complete.
Phew. Three years (three years?!?) and a lot of sweat, sanding, and tears later, I finally have a finished belt buckle! To be honest it turned out much better than I expected. There are of course some issues with it and things I wish I could have done differently, but the final prop itself is fit, functional, and looks the part. I may be biased, but I really do think my version of McCree’s buckle is one of best I’ve seen. It was quite a journey to get to this point, and there were lessons learned for every step along…
At this point the physical geometry of McCree’s buckle is done! I designed a 3D model based on the in-game buckle, built a physical ‘master’ prop, created a silicone mold, cast a version of the buckle out of solid plastic, and cleaned up the casting to fix the defects from the molding process. The buckle is so close to being complete! But before I can call it “finished, I need to attach a metal mounting plate so I can use it with a real belt and then give the buckle a shiny gold paint job.
In the previous posts of this series, I created a comprehensive 3D model and physical ‘master’ prop of McCree’s belt buckle based on references from Overwatch. Now that I have a polished physical version of the buckle in hand, the next step is to create a solid cast of the buckle from a silicone mold!
With the digital model in hand, the next step in the propmaking process is to bring this digital version of the belt into the physical world. To accomplish this I’m going to use my 3D printer in combination with some epoxy, some body filler, and a lot of painting and sanding.
The first step in creating a real-life version of McCree’s belt buckle from Overwatch is to find references that tells us what we’re aiming for and how the final version should look. From these I’m going to build a detailed digital model that will serve as the basis for building the “master” version of the prop. Let’s get to it!
Earlier this year while I was hard at work on the Nintendo Extension Ctrl library, I challenged myself to try and support as many different types of controllers as possible. As a part of that I picked up a DJ Hero controller for the Nintendo Wii on Ebay for $10. And then it hit me: with a little bit of effort, I could write some code that would allow me to play the character of Lucio in Overwatch using this turntable! So that’s exactly what I did.
The McCree controller is done! Now it’s time to take a break and do a little postmortem: what worked well, what didn’t, and what I would do differently next time.