Like my Retro Space Minifigures, I designed this minifig series (affectionately known as a “figbarf” among the fan community) for a contest. It seemed like a perfect time to debut these designs, the majority of which have waited almost-finished in my back pocket for about a year. The combo of sand-blue overalls with Hero Factory armor was one I really liked when I first made it, especially when I added dark brown hands to match with the straps on their legs.
Who did I end up with? A squad of futuristic Earth Defenders! I’m not sure exactly what they’re defending against (Intergalactic invaders? Terror cells? Warring superpowers?), but I do know that they hail from all over the globe, united in their mission to save our planet from a disastrous fate.
Earth Defender Minifigures
From left to right, these are our characters:
• Sgt. Quan Ngyuen | Formidable gunner | Vietnamese | Specialty: thriving between a rock and a hard place |
I’m happy with the pose I achieved on Sgt. Nguyen; he was the hardest to balance for obvious reasons. The night-vision goggles and gunmetal grey racing helmet is a combination I’ve had around since the very first iteration of these minifigures; if not for variety’s sake, I probably would’ve given this headgear to more characters because I think it looks so good! Also notice how, very conveniently, the bar hole on the green power blade piece (seen more clearly on Pvt. Agustín) slots perfectly onto the back of the Hero Factory armor.
• Pvt. Juan Agustín | Typical maverick | Colombian | Specialty: overestimating his own abilities |
Of this series of five characters, I find Pvt. Agustín the least interesting. He essentially just demonstrates the Earth Defender uniform and color scheme on a basic canvas—which I guess is valuable, to an extent—and lets me show off the power blade, a common weapon among this team, when drawn. I opted to use Asaaj Ventress lightsaber handles for these swords because I liked how sleek they look, plus they subtly extend the curve of the blade into a pleasing sine shape.
• Cpt. Freja Nielsen | Vigorous leader | Danish | Specialties: rousing speeches, shrewd planning, and chewing out Pvt. Agustín |
This was the last of these minifigs to come together. To me, Cpt. Nielsen is what really ties this figbarf together and gives me a clear idea of who these uniformed people are. Plus, she gives a spot of visual interest with the brightness of her attire. I opted for a clean white uniform largely because the parts I wanted to use (pants with printed shoes, the side cap, the utility belt, those short-sleeve arms, and the rubber band) all came in that color. Nevertheless, I think it’s a perfect, pure hue for an international soldier. That small gold collar she has on is a backwards Elves necklace.
• Cpl. Tayshia Wright | Heroic commando | American | Specialty: shooting reasonably accurately in two directions at once |
Named after a contestant on ABC’s The Bachelor (which I watch with my fiancée), Cpl. Wright has the most personality of the lot here, in my opinion. I love how the Hero Factory armor let me pose her arms splayed this way, as its pauldrons holds them in their sockets. The reason that these minifigs are Earth Defenders, and not the defenders of some other planet, is that glowing plant symbol on their chests… That leaf symbol reminded me of Eve’s plant sigil from Disney/Pixar’s Wall-E.
• Sgt. Mikhail Vasiliev | Battered veteran | Russian | Specialty: surviving pretty much anything |
My concept here was to show a soldier of myriad campaigns, someone who had sustained quite a few injuries in his day. Sgt. Vasiliev sports futuristic prostheses on his right arm and leg, an eye patch, and some more recent bandages around his face. Ouch! This figure originally used LEGO’s specially-molded cybernetic leg, but I ended up giving that to the robot Bort-Bort from my previous figbarf instead. As homage, and tying these two together, Vasiliev’s synthetic leg is actually the companion to Bort-Bort’s regular one!
Thanks for reading! If you have any other questions or comments about these minifigs, feel free to leave them in the comments below