Please take a moment to read about the creator and designer of the Mechatro Wego Robot, Kazushi Kobayashi, and come see the robot in person at ToyCon UK on April 9th.
Can we have you introduce yourself to our fans in the UK?
Hello. My name is Kazushi Kobayashi (Moderythm).
I originally started in the industry with making miniatures for special effects films, but now I work on 3DCG modeling for anime and making original sculpts for toys. And currently, I am focusing on designs and sculpts for the "MechatroWeGo", which is a part of my original project "Chubu Mechatronics".
We love your WeGo design but what was the original inspiration for it?
I happen to be a big fan of classic automobiles from the 1950's and 60's. Especially the tiny and round-shaped "Bubble Cars" which I like very much, became an inspiration for MechatroWeGo design. At the same time, I took some ideas from the proportion balance of cute objects such as plush toys in making the WeGo as a humanoid robot.
We have heard you used to work in anime but how was it?
The Japanese robot anime genre is raised on the foundation built by many mechanic designers.
And by modeling 3DCG based on those designs, I came to notice the designers' characteristics and many ideas which were totally new to me. This is a very stimulating experience, and it is clear that these experiences helped me become who I am now.
How did you come up with the concept of Chubu Mechatronics?
There is no exact model for the "Chubu Mechatronics" world.
When I was a child (in 1970's), the ideas of the future world portrayed in the comics were very fascinating and full of dreams. And now, as we are living in that "future", sadly there are no robots roaming the streets even though we have items that we haven't even imagined of back then, such as iPhone, etc. (laughs)
That's why I thought of wanting to build up an imaginary world where the robot industry has become major in the 1950's and continued to live on until today. And by adding my personal favorite backgrounds and design into that concept, the world of CHUBU Mechatronics was formed.
We think the base concept of the WeGo as being designed for children to use to go to school is fantastic but was there a reason it was for children?
Most of the robots seen in modern films and anime are made for combat. They certainly look cool, but I wanted to make robots that are used in more peaceful ways.
When grown-ups pilot robots, there's always someone coming up with a bad idea. Then, how about if the robots were made for kids? Wouldn't it make people smile if these robots shaped like eggs or beans, gather and walk together to school?
This is how I became to design the robots for use by children.
Was there any thoughts to make a WeGo for adults?
Of course! I would want to ride one myself! (laughs)
I have actually tried to draw a variant design with a few volume adjustments here and there for adults to ride in without changing the current size. But I think just making the whole thing 30% larger with the same design could be interesting, too. So if you're up close, you couldn't tell if it's for adults or for kids!
When you first started this series as a garage kit did you ever think it would get this popular and make you a star?
The first batch of resin kits I made were small in scale (1/20 and 1/35), so the design was kept as simple as possible. Complex details can be cool looking, but it becomes difficult to produce many pieces and it could also act as a stress for beginners who are not familiar with building resin kits.
But as the big 1/12 scale product was under way, I thought that it's time for some new features. The outer shell is meant to be like the body of a car, so there are not so many details added. Some mechanical details were added to the frame parts, just enough not to spoil the cute image.
For the interior, equipment’s such as air conditioner and glove compartments were added. Especially, the design for the control panel has been updated to give it a gaming console kind of look. I guess this adds to the feeling that these robots are made for and driven by children.
For the fans who will see the WeGo for the first time at Toycon UK what would you like for them to notice when they look at it?
I don't have the slightest idea. All I did was produce an original robot with just the thought of "Making a form with my favorite elements put together".
And all I thought about was showcasing it to everyone by attending hobby events instead of having a personal exhibit. As I received good feedback at the events, I started to produce and sell resin kits, and I came this far while listening to the users' requests. I didn't base the designs on research to make a hit product, but it was just a result of putting together elements of my personal favorites. And it makes me very happy that this was accepted and became so popular among many.
The WeGo fandom has been greatly affected by the users making their own original customized versions, and spreading them via social media. There are many people who got to know WeGo by photos posted on social media from people other than myself. It was very lucky for me to have announced the WeGo in this era of social media.
The details on the 12 WeGo are amazing but was this all in the original design?
I'm guessing that it will be the first time for most visitors to see the WeGo. Many should be wondering "What is that thing?!". There are some settings and designs for WeGo that I thought of, but I would like everyone to enjoy WeGo freely without following my ideas too much.
WeGo is not a strong-looking and heavily weathered mech, and has a body line similar to a soft-vinyl toy, but if you look close enough, there are mechanical design elements showing that it's a robot. These are the points that I would like everyone to notice and enjoy.
What can we expect from WeGo in 2016?
I would like to introduce WeGo to many foreign countries outside of Japan. I'm really looking forward to everyone's reactions at the ToyCon UK.
Also, I'm also interested in visualization. It doesn't have to be a series called "MechatroWeGo" from the start, but have it appear as cameo in other anime or movies, and let people who know WeGo say "Hey, wasn't that WeGo just now?!" would be interesting to begin with.(laughs)
As for the toys, I would be happy if we're able to release various optional equipment’s and variants on the outer shell to expand the world of WeGo in the future.
For more about Mr. Kobayashi please check his Website or Twitter account:
To learn more about the Mechatro Wego:
For more from 1000toys please check: