From the earliest glimpses of the Riptide Battlesuit I could tell that while I did not care for the stock model, it had major potential. The general theme was nice enough, but I did not like much of the execution. In particular I did not care for the skinny legs, the stubby Heavy Burst Cannon, the tiny cooling intake and head, or the disruptive chest. I began my early conceptualization with a quick photoshop job that conveyed what I wanted to do with the model. I was fond of the legs in the photoshopped image, though I thought that they needed to get even bulkier. The head felt right to me, though others had suggestions for improvements. The jetpack was lifted straight from the XV9, and so was the center of the chest. The outer pieces of the chest were lifted from the standard XV8. I had hoped to use these to improve consistency across the range of battlesuits, tying the XV10 platform to its smaller brethren.
The gun I already had plans for. I knew that I wanted a more realistic looking Heavy Burst Cannon, something that truly conveyed its awesome power.
I referred to Fil Dunn's Tau mechs for inspiration. I was specifically drawn in by this particular model:
I loved the long, parallel barrels that it possessed. This led me to begin thinking about a larger 8-barrel version for the riptide to possess as a main weapon.
The thoughts and brainstorming went on for another week or two, and then I finally got ahold of my very own Riptide Battlesuit. I immediately tore it open and began measuring out parts from which I used a program called SolidWorks to create a digital replica of the components that I wanted to modify. These were specifically the torso, and the legs.
Once those were created, I had a 1:1 scale digital model of my primary targets for the riptide. I could begin virtually constructing my conversion and bringing it to life.