Monochromatic Marvel

A black, white and rad all over spaceship from Foxy!

Surely we can't be far from the day when I can buy my own personal spaceship? So I can explore the galaxy whenever I like? Right? Please? I want to run rings around Saturn, pop to Pluto for my picnics, and steer my ship right into the core of the sun to work on my tan. Space travel! For everyone! Get on this, science!

Not that I'll be happy with an average ship, mind. Every great space explorer needs a great vehicle, and you’re not going to boldly go where no man has gone before in any old hunk of junk, are you?

So step this way and take a look at the black-and-white beauty that is Spaceship 23, a Rhapsody-class carrier ship by Foxy. Imagine yourself at the helm of this sleek space-explorer, piloting it through dust storms and asteroid fields, red lights flashing, second-in-command screaming in your ear about comms systems and shields being down. Calm down, chum, nothing ever goes wrong in space! I think!

This galactic leviathan, which comes in both civilian and prison versions, depending on what kind of human cargo you’d like to haul, took Foxy a colossal three years to build, working on and off on the project in his spare time.

“In various works like movies, comics, games, or even real-life attractions,” explains Foxy to me, “you'll constantly see doors, pathways, and other areas in the background which a character just walks past without much thought, and you never get to see what's down them, which drove me crazy.” That's why this map aims to have almost every switch or button you find in the ship have a function – which is an admirable/insane commitment! Suddenly it's not hard to see where three years of work went.

“I always wanted to make giant functioning cities and spaceships in full for the fun of it,” continues Foxy. “But I never seemed to have enough Legos for that.” And so, he took to Minecraft, building increasingly larger and more spectacular things, developing his style and realising the benefits of the striking black-and-white look.

“Fewer colors means shapes, form, and lighting stand out more than things like texture, but the fact that quartz provides white stairs and slabs to work with makes it easier,” he says. Foxy actually rebuilt a few of his old spaceship projects to match the monochromatic look of Spaceship 23, an image overhaul which took quite some time.

But the results, I’m sure you’ll agree, are well worth it.

A big old build like this one isn’t just about watching Star Trek and wondering what’s behind Bay Door 3, or where that big bendy corridor that they use for long conversations actually goes. Foxy’s builds are all modular for a start, meaning that they can be taken apart and slotted back together in different configurations – no easy feat. “[This system] takes into account the length, width, and height of the rooms themselves, door placement, and the placement of the redstone circuits that run under the floors.”

This actually makes life easier further down the line, says Foxy: “This way, if I ever think of a better floor layout, I can easily rearrange the rooms and have everything still line up without having to rebuild too much.” So if he wants to build something new, he can grab a handful of these modular rooms and slot them together in new combinations and know that they’ll still all work perfectly.

“One of the most important things to remember is to not get discouraged if you don't see immediate results with your builds. Nobody starts out amazing.”

Even before all that, it’s about planning the meaning behind where and what the rooms are. “I plan out the layouts of each floor first by figuring out what types of rooms would make the most sense in relation to both its location on the ship and the rooms around it,” says Foxy.

“For example, while it might make sense for a more private space like a crew cabin to be on the same floor as a larger public space like a cafeteria, it wouldn't make sense for one to open directly into the other.” Wait, what? Sleeping next to the cafeteria is perfect for midnight snacking! Trust me on this.

Foxy draws inspiration from other sci-fi - Tron Legacy, Halo, and even real-life people such as Neofuturistic architect Zaha Hadid - and spends a lot of time sketching and prototyping before even picking up a mouse.

“Doodles, concept sketches, and detailed, measured plans (graph paper is incredibly useful) allow you to easily add to or change aspects of a design much more quickly than you're able to in-game,” Foxy says. And remember, he adds - even if you feel like you’re not getting anywhere, progress is slow, and one day you’ll be able to look back on how far you’ve come.

Spaceship 23 deserves to be explored, something you can do by visiting this page.

Spaceship 23 deserves to be explored, something you can do by visiting this page.

Spaceship 23 deserves to be explored, something you can do by visiting this page.

Spaceship 23 deserves to be explored, something you can do by visiting this page.

“One of the most important things to remember is to not get discouraged if you don't see immediate results with your builds. Nobody starts out amazing. There are a ton of things I'm still working on trying to improve with my builds even after seven years of playing the game.” All these years later, and he's still trying to improve on his designs? Hmmm... how would you feel about building me a personal spaceship next?

Want more space-themed builds? Try Moon Destruction, Front Line in Space.

Or for something completely different, click here!