Now that we’ve got desktop factories to turn our ideas into physical objects, why should we settle for the past? Sure, one could 3D print some famous character from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away and sit it on one’s desk, but, as the ultimate customization tool, 3D printing allows us to create designs entirely unique to our own tastes and interests. We can 3D print completely new objects – objects yet to be! Objects from the future.
Trobok Toys describes itself as “a toy brand from the future.” The one-person design shop has released CAD files for six different creatures that appear to hail from a distant dystopian time in which the air is unbreatheable due to the presence of a mysterious fog. All of these animals have been mutated by the noxious material – except for Spike, of course – and now don gas masks and biomat suits to survive. Because all of these mutants are from the future, a futuristic technology is required to bring them into the present. As Trobok explains, “3D printing is a technology sent to us by aliens, we have recently understood this future tech and now can print things in real life from the digital world.” So, with this alien technology, you can 3D print all of your very own Trobok toys. Most for a price, but Trobok has a few designs available for free on the store’s website and on Thingiverse.
The store has just begun, but I can sense the growth of a solid brand, complete with a novel backstory and distinct look. Taking off from the vinyl Munny toys, Trobok expands the customizability of pop playthings for grown-ups. Not only can customers purchase a Trobok for $3 to 3D print and paint to their liking, but they can also modify the CAD files, too. All that’s missing from Trobok is a web or mobile app for parametrically tweaking Trobok designs. But, once modified, customers could even consider selling their own copies in the same way that Munny artists have. If you do decide to tweak the creatures for your own profit, all that Trobok urges is that, “If [you’re] making originals ,put some effort into it. If you gonna resell and make it yours, don’t sell it as is, there is a plan for that later for interested parties…”
I’m no investor, but if any are reading, I’d jump on Trobok as an opportunity to build a 3D printable toy empire… from the future.