Not content to simply assemble an AT-AT figure and put it on his shelf like everyone else, this maker built an entire scale model of the Battle of Hoth. The Star Wars fan behind popular YouTube channel Boylei Hobby Time masterfully cuts styrofoam into icy slopes, rocks, and trenches. He adds Imperial soldiers, turrets, and even lighted laser cannon bolts. Basically, he creates a truly magnificent rendition of Star Wars‘ Hoth Battle in diorama form. Our elementary school projects are shaking in their boots.
In true Star Wars prop fashion, this Hoth diorama is cobbled together from all sorts of random stuff, like the ion cannon made out of a coffee bag valve and part of a Boba Fett action figure’s jetpack. The tiny details are amazing, and it’s all narrated in a soothing Bob Ross-like voice that makes you feel like you should try the project for yourself.
The video lists all the supplies and tools you’ll need if you decide to make your own. There’s something called terrain paste and a snow-like covering over the base. He made sure to place the AT-AT figures into the wet paint to recreate their footprints.
There are also scorch marks and footprints from the Imperial fighters added in as well. The attention to detail is never more apparent than in the lighting additions. He even added laser bolts coming from each AT-AT, aimed at the rebel base and ion cannon. We are in awe of this Star Wars recreation.
All of this reminded me of the combination of practical effects, miniatures, and filming tricks combined to create the actual scene in The Empire Strikes Back. The video below includes behind-the-scenes footage from both the Norway and ILM studio filming locations. And an interview with Brian Johnson, an effects artist who worked on the film.
Boylei Hobby Time is the same channel that taught us to make 1:12 scale glowing lightsabers to punch up our action figures. But this creator isn’t the only one making Star Wars models and dioramas with elements of this scene. Lots of hobbyists are drawn to the AT-ATs distinctive shape. There’s this BBQ grill in the shape of an Imperial walker. And also costumes for your horse or play structures for your cat.
Melissa is Nerdist’s science & technology staff writer. She also moderates “science of” panels at conventions and co-hosts Star Warsologies, a podcast about science and Star Wars. Follow her on Twitter @melissatruth.