after 5 years working as a keycap maker, this is the first time I try to make a cherry profile spacebar, yes, the spacebar in cherry profile…
a bit of history
What do we talk about when we talk about 8-bit? Well, there’s one thing we’re sure that it was, has been, and will ever be the golden era of the gaming world. Flashback 37 years ago, we wanted you to take a trip down memory lane, to reminisce about the very first time you held your console that’s taking the world by storm during that time and marking the start of the third generation of video game consoles. This period saw the dawn of 8-bit handheld consoles originated from Japan, and their legendary games coming along.
another world unravelled
To human’s eyes, the 8-bit gaming world seems to be only presented with the more improved visual and sound capabilities than the previous generation, but somewhere in 1983, up in the dusty attic of a boy named Orion, things were different. There lived a whole civilization that nobody ever knew about. The society of those magically built codes that come to life in a senseless cartridge. The stellarly enchanting world of Pipeline City.
Well, let’s get to know Orion, also known as the Master in Pipeline City, first. He is a young boy with a golden heart, which is very selective when it comes to who to open up. To outsiders, he carries a rather reserved, gives the impression of being a basic nerdy boy that’s always hiding in his bedroom to build something “weird.” Yes, that should be the word you’re thinking about. Or most of the time, he would retreat into his shell, hide under his hoodie cap, put on an all-black pair of headphones, and there you have it – another typical normie who likes to play video games. However, this is not the case at all, especially when he is with his most beloved ones at home. That’s how you know his heart has given its choice to open up.
pipeline sole creator
But why should we talk about this Orion boy at all? It’s just that he is the one creator of this game civilization. It’s just that he helps shape each and every living soul in Pipeline City. Or we can put it in this way: the moment he stands on tiptoe to reach the shelf where Pipeline City game cassette lies begins everything.
While most of his peers would go for an adventurous racing game, or heavy action and devil-defeated game, Orion decides to bring home the Pipeline City game set. When he places his eyes on its tender and warmhearted poster being neglected over other dazzling and vibrantly colourized games with a countervailing plot, Orion knows he just has to have it. No game can speak for him better than this. A game with no fighting, no evil, no demon of any kind. Just characters’ care for each other and the marvellous world built with their love. His cherished nature leads the essential part to make Pipeline into a place where everyone’s heart is just like his.
Plugging in his time-worn console, Orion starts to build his Pipeline empire. Piece by piece, it begins to form with each brick, mortar, and the attention to every little detail that Orion pours out to his city. At first, there are only a few citizens in the town, and considering the facilities available at that time, it’s quite hard to come by for Pipeline people. But with Orion’s indulging efforts and passion, the town is getting into a more exemplary structure day by day. It’s obvious to say, Pipeline citizens are very happy with their Master, so happy that they even pull together to make a code and create a character resembling Orion just to elect him as their “mayor.”
this time we have 3 profiles: Cherry + SA + Cubic, and 5 keycaps sizes: 1u – 1.5u – 2u – 2.25u – 6.25u, 4 designs…
what goes around, comes around…
With Orion’s guidance, Pipeline City thrives more than ever. The town has everything it needs to be considered civilized: houses are built for everyone, convenient outlets are scattered around the town, there are also vast green spaces with trees in between water terrains. More importantly, bellies are fed, and spirits are lifted. But just like any story, having protagonists also means having antagonists. And in this Pipeline town, it’s the Mad Artisan. He’s conspiring against Orion and the whole city with the desire to take control of Pipeline. With his own evil traits. Literally.
The Mad Artisan plans to clone his villainous marks to then spread out to the entire city so that everyone will be infected and destroyed. If not, turn to extreme madness and damage the city. Either way, it’s a catastrophe waiting to happen.
It doesn’t take Pipeline residents long to find out about this wicked plot. When you have everyone’s heart and mind on something, you’ll have the unimaginably strong power to fight against it. With the love and goodwill from a boy like Orion, people from Pipeline city are quick to stand up front the Mad Artisan. They use the coding skill from the time they created Orion mayor to lock Mad Artisan in a specialized jailing code bit. He’s stuck in there, that’s the sentence the villain will get in Pipeline City. Little does everyone know, and this code bit turns into a special level that Orion boy can never manage to get through …
pipeline handicrafting journey
Now we are 100% ready to tell you about how we made this sentimental keycap series. Read on and find out the steps it takes to produce these real-life pixels on your mechanical keyboards.
base or core? both!
First, we cast the resin to create the base and also a frame model for the keycaps. Moulding by resin is essential to form two main parts of a keycap, by which our artisans call the whole base and the core to differentiate more easily. The base can be understood as the outer part of the caps, and the core is the very intricately tiny details lying inside, and this time they are the green spaces, sewer pipes, mushroom, bricks, and many other chillaxing icons from the 8-bit era.
breathe life to the keycaps
After that, we move on to colouring the keycaps. Each colour of every detail in the core will be poured out separately. For instance, there is green colour patch only for trees, red for mushroom, ochre for bricks, etc.
After identifying specific colour blocks for each detail, we go ahead and start pouring the paints to the core details. However, colouring Pipeline City artisan keycaps are not finished yet. We continue hand-painting many more layers to create richer effects with colour shifting or even shadowing.
…and we’re almost there!
When the details are fully coloured, we begin to attach them to the base with paste. Next, we cast resin one more time onto the whole keycap to form the standardized shape. At this point, the keycaps are entirely filled and firm. The very final step to take is sanding and polishing each keycap. After this, voilà, the Pipeline City handcrafted keycaps are so ready to be delivered to you!
important copyright notice!
Since there have been quite a few misunderstandings about this 8-bit keycap series, we want to reassure that the concept is clear for everyone. A lot of people participating in our mini game have chosen names about Super Mario – a famous game series from Nintendo, for our keycaps. However, we are just simply inspired from the game along with its whole era, and want to transform this inspiration into something we’re good at for old times’ sake. We do not use or intend to use any copyrighted materials from Super Mario or Nintendo in this Pipeline City keycaps. Also for this reason, we couldn’t go through with any names associated with Super Mario in the mini game.
Our keycaps series this time is essentially centered around 8-bit and its iconic pixel graphics that gives you the instant hit of the era. And that is all that Jelly Key wants to bring to you this time!
mad artisan’s red keep
super indie underground
orion the ranger
- MX stem
- Profile: SA r1, r3 (1u – 1.5u – 2u – 2.25u) Cherry (1u – 6.25u) Cubic (1u)
- Design and Handcrafted by Jelly Key
- Open time: 7/18/2020
- Close time: 7/24/2020
- Starting to Deliver after Groupbuy: 90-100 days
- We could close the GB sooner than expected. So take your chance as soon as you can.
what is in the box?
- 1 Pipeline City artisan keycaps by Jelly Key.
- 01 Medal dog-tag with engraved unique series number.
- 01 Wooden box.
- A unique serial number is on the bottom of the keycap as well.
- The keycap was made entirely by hand and tool. The final product may vary from the original photos but at acceptable aspect. We would love to ask you to tolerate any reasonable differents.
- With each artisan keycap from Jelly Key, we offer you a one-on-one replacement if there is fault that causes by our artisan team. Feel free to contact us.