Blacktron was one of the first two factions of the Space theme (the other one being Futuron) and was introduced in 1987.
The first unified and truly "themed" Space subtheme, Blacktron took to the stars in black with yellow trim, and red and yellow transparent pieces.(The odd man out was the Meteor Monitor, which was white and black with red transparents.) Blacktron minifigures wore black jumpsuits akin to today's military pilots, with white trim and opaque black visors. Stylish, sleek and intimidating, Blacktron was a major step up from the rather clunky design values of Classic Space. Blacktron is considered to be the "bad guys" of the two factions. It featured a large spacecraft, the Renegade, which set the tone for all future big ships by splitting into a number of smaller modules, including a storage bin for a small wheeled vehicle; these modules could be recombined not just with each other, but with modules from other vehicles in the set as well, specifically the Invader and Battrax. This modular interchangeability has been a staple of LEGO Space ever since.
For clarification, Blacktron is often referred to as Blacktron I, as LEGO released Blacktron II (or Blacktron Future Generation) in 1991. Though Blacktron officially ended in 1988, the 1875 Meteor Monitor was released in 1990. Considering Blacktron II's slightly altered colour scheme it could be viewed as being from between the "upgrade" era of Blacktron to Blacktron II.
Blacktron minifigures were also included as prisoners in sets of Space Police I.
In 2011, the LEGO Master Builder Academy website showed pictures online of an M.O.C. (My Own Creation) of a Blacktron base that the creator called: Blacktron Intelligence Agency (B.I.A.). Also, a video on the website mentions Blacktron as: The villainous space crooks of Blacktron.
This is a description taken from LEGO.com. Do not modify it.
Designed and Built by Brian Darrow
Brian Darrow has been building LEGO® models since 1964, and has built together with his two sons since they were in diapers. He finds building to be a great way to unwind after a long day of working as a chiropractic physician.
Brian’s Blacktron Intelligence Agency (BIA) was inspired by the original 1987 LEGO Space Blacktron theme with its distinctive black, yellow and transparent-yellow color scheme. He first built it as part of a collaborative Moonbase project in 2004, and he has rebuilt and added to it several times since then.
“I start all my creations with pencil sketches before I dig into the bricks, and I like to consider myself an old-school freestyle builder. I built a lot of town layouts and spaceships with my sons during the 1980s and 1990s, so my present building style reflects the LEGO sets from those years. AFOLs [Adult Fans of LEGO] often comment how my creations look like something the LEGO Group might have produced during those years. That’s the best compliment they could give me.”
The size and height of the creation is designed to flow inward and upward, drawing the viewer’s eye to the center towers.
The Blacktron Intelligence Agency comes apart in sections. I use tiles with minimal plates to hold everything secure at the joints.
I use a combination of Technic pins and cross-member corridors to stabilize the four main towers and all elevated platforms.
The planet’s soft surface and shifting sand required an above ground fuel delivery system and elevated fuel storage tanks.
My favorite spaceship creation is the Blacktron VLAD that I built in 2008. It has a beautiful profile and unique landing gear. It is fully armed with rockets and surveillance equipment.
Antennae give a real cosmic feel to any Space model, and I use many different types and styles.
I love minifigures, so I place as many around my creations as possible. The spaceships always have full service ground crews and all the towers are fully manned. Troops of spacemen are marching everywhere around the layout.
Besides the superstructure itself, I fill the layout with land vehicles and spaceships. The original Blacktron 1 ships are all featured prominently, along with many custom models and classic LEGO Space sets rebuilt in the Blacktron color scheme.
The laser transmitter dishes are placed high on the towers so they have line-of-sight connection with the targeted orbiting satellites.
Solar energy collection panels supply the entire BIA from strategic locations throughout the layout.
Without a doubt, the twin monorail spires are my favorite part of the BIA. Their engineering and technical creativity produce a clean, functional design that elevates the monorail from 10 bricks high up to 24 bricks above ground level.
The space train was added to give extra motion to the layout. It was built with a low center of gravity so it can run at full speed without derailing.
Here’s a couple of very early sketches (see next page for the second sketch). I don’t spend much time detailing the drawings because they’re really just quick “idea catchers”. These sketches are a starting point in the creative process, and my creations are fleshed out once I get my hands in the bricks!
The most frequently asked questions I get are ‘How long did it take?’ and ‘How many LEGO pieces did it take to build it?’ Since I’ve been doing this for decades and I rebuild and rework all of my creations continually, I never stop building to count bricks…that just wouldn’t be any fun for me. LEGO building is all about having fun and expressing my creativity. -Brian Darrow