Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Undefined Gamer: Bionicle in 2015... AGAIN!

I'm making this post as a response to the growing popularity addressing
the rumors of a 2015 Bionicle reboot.

      Since then, I have left the Biotube community to focus on bigger,
better projects. This Summer, I've tasked myself with finishing up my
play, shooting a short film, and writing a novella. While I still feel
the Bionicle universe has lots of potential, its execution was largely
      We all know the brand will come back one day. It's inevitable. All
Lego has to do is look to Bionicle's 2002 sales to realize how much
potential money is out there. Sure, markets have changed and so have
toys, but it is very possible for Lego to find the modern day
equivalent of the Bohrok.
      At this point, do I really care?
      From a toy standpoint, no. I have no use for the figures anymore. I
haven't sought the need to play with toys for years (not that you can
play with Legos, they're sort of fragile) nor am I collector, and I've
already established that I've lost the drive to use them for
stopmotions this year, as other projects have caught my eye.
      Still, I'd like to see them in the hands of the next generation.
      With Lego's newfound ability to make movies that don't suck, it may be
possible for them to reboot the film franchise adequately, but it will
always suffer from conflicting themes. What made Bionicle stand out
(and almost got it rejected) was their warlike appearance. This
clearly catered to an older audience, though it attracted kids too.
However, it was still a toyline, and Lego thought it knew that the
younger audience would outrank the old.
      They were wrong.
      Needless to say, Lego did everything they could to cater to this young
audience, while trying to not make Bionicle lose its identity. This
carries over far too well in the films, as the filmmakers repeatedly
tried to make what essentially where action/adventure movies for kids.
It just didn't work, and served as unforgivable contrast to the
novellas, which were permitted to essentially do whatever the fuck
they wanted.
      I recommend reading them.
      Bionicle's problems occurred by their misguided need to cater to two
different audiences. Their efforts to cater to young kids alienated my
generation who grew up with it, while the complex storyline and at
times adult themes alienated the younger audience. Keep in mind,
nobody was doing particularly well with selling toys to this younger
audience as we saw everything from an increased demand in the video
game industry to the rise of mobile phones and tablets to a global
recession in the 00's.
      If Bionicle will do well, it needs to pick one audience, and using
Hero Factory as reference, it ain't gonna be the older audience.
      I still think in terms of an open-world style game, they should allow
a hardcore game studio to develop it, but only because of the gigantic
loads of potential there. Will it happen? Probably not. Their
executives will think that the only way to make a hardcore Bionicle
game successful is to connect with the old audience from their original
run. This is false. A hardcore game gains or loses popularity based on
the quality of its experience. There is so much one can do in terms of
a game in this universe, and if done properly, it can have as much
impact as Skyrim and Minecraft.
      Why? It has a gigantic universe, a long, rewarding immerse
storyline, a potential for a built-in mod mechanic far easier and
effect to use than Skyrim's, and a million and a long list of
potentially addicting sidequests.
      But Lego will probably give the license to some horrible
family-oriented company and release it for Wii U.
      As far as a reboot, I'm only interested in a game. Leave the comics
and books alone; they're perfect- err- they at least properly
represent everything Bionicle has to offer. I wouldn't change a thing.

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