Monday, November 20th, 2006 at 12:46pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
It may have been a while since our last review, but don't think we've forgotten our goal to review all of the 2006 sets. Today BZPower Forum Assistant Kex wraps up the Piraka with a review of Reidak. Read on to see the good, bad, and in-between of this villain and see if he's right for your wishlist this year.
The Tracer is here... 100% Hunter, 0% Chicken.
The the most superficial part of any LEGO product, but the one that often determines whether or not the set is a success or failure.
The canister is 8 inches high and 4 inches wide, which is fairly small when compared to the colossal Inika can. Not that I'm complaining -- the Inika can was ridiculously oversized. This canister has the proportions we're used to. The primary canister color is a monotone gray, something I'm not too fond of. It makes the set look dull. I don't want to see a dull looking set on store shelves, do you? I would have preferred to see more color representation. On top of the can is a plastic replica of Reidak's face, with a button on top of the can that allows you to light up the eyes. It's a catchy feature, and I'd imagine that plenty of people play around with it at stores. The downside is that, generally, toys that carry a 'try me' feature on the box tend to have shorter battery life. There are indentations on the top of the can, apparently to place Zamor on... I don't really see a point to that. There are circular ridges along both sides of the can, and little chips taken out along the bottom to create a pattern.
The art on the can is very clean cut. The main focus is a CGI image of Reidak in all his glory. Also notice the portrait image on the upper right, where Reidak's title of "the tracer" is announced, and there's a 'try me' message alerting the consumer that the product has light-up eyes. And then there's all the traditional information on a Bionicle packaging... However, it seems LEGO went to great lengths to warn the consumer that the set contains small parts not suitable for children under 3. This is more than most likely because of the Zamor, although I don't see why a label like that isn't clearly placed on every LEGO set. All the other pieces are choking hazards as well... It's nothing really new.
The back of the canister contains a very realistic animated image of Reidak, along with two frames noting Reidak's glow-in-the-dark teeth and light-up eyes. Under all that are some more safety precautions and copyright information... Stuff nobody reads.
WHAT'S IN THE BOX?
So you've bought it and taken it home (or at least made it to the car), punched the perforated tabs and dump out the contents. What do you get for your money?
After you tug and twist at the top long enough, the canister eventually opens. But what treasure lies inside?
I think you make out quite well for a mere $9 USD.
Here you see the front and back of the instruction manual. The front has the same design as the canister, while the back features advertisements for Bionicle 3: Web of Shadows and the GBA Advance game Maze of Shadows. Both of which are rather old now.
Here's where we start to cut to the heart of the matter. You didn't buy this box for all the glossy booklets & creative artwork. You want to know about the LEGO bricks & bits that are included, and what (if any) new & interesting parts you'll find inside. Here's also where I'll talk about any new and/or interesting pieces that you will encounter.
At the time that this set was released (around this time last year, actually) the majority of these parts were brand new -- which is an ideal reason to pick up this set if you haven't already. On the right lower arm piece (the thicker of the two) you'll notice that it is patterned with some sort of scales. It's a nice little detail, and is something I think should be incorporated into new sets. When looking at any of the pictures, Reidak's buzz saw should be the one of the first things that grab your attention... You know, that thing can turn solid ground into quicksand. Another new piece for Bionicle would be the glowing eyes. They only come in the orange variety, and they easily slide into a Piraka skull or a Toa Metru head. I don't mind the light-up eyes at all, mainly because it's not very noticeable on the set. If you were looking at the set and didn't know that they eyes lit up, you'd think nothing of it. As far as coloration goes, there's nothing new here besides the awesome shade of gold. And it really is awesome. Glossy and, uh, awesome. One of the main distinguishing factors between the Piraka are their feet. There are two types -- one, a clawed type, which Reidak possesses, and two, a webbed type. View the picture below to compare the two types.
Lastly, there's a new Rhotuka in town. Except they're called Zamor now, and they aren't spinners -- but rather marble-like balls that fire from a launcher.
What can you expect while putting this model together?
The build is very straightforward and simple. In 5 minutes or so, you've got yourself a Piraka standing before you. The simplicity of the build is due to the large pieces used in the set. There are also only 41 total pieces. Then again, when compared to previous generations of can sets, they are all mainly composed larger scale pieces. Sadly, you can build each Piraka using a single instruction manual. They're clones. And we all know we just adore clone sets, right everybody?
So you've got the model together, but is it more like playing with a block of wood or an interactive toy?
As you can see in the pictures I've supplied, Reidak is capable of a variety of poses. He's definitely not lackluster in that area.
Technically, the Piraka each have 13 points of articulation -- the ankles, knees, leg attachment hands, elbows, shoulders, and head. However, I would say that the Piraka only have 12 articulation points. It's a very bold statement to label the head as articulated. For one thing, the white Piraka skull's chin touches the torso. Why? I have no clue. Also, the rubber spine limits any posability of the head. You can turn it to any position you want, but it'll pop right back to the middle. It might as well be fixed into place in the center. Even though it does have a neck joint, the head is stuck in place. However, I have solutions for both these flaws.
First, the length of the neck joint needs to be increased so it's lifted off the torso. The Piraka face needs to separate from the spine. The spine being attached the head piece is what's causing the trouble... So why not just take them apart?
While we're on the topic of the Piraka spines, I'm sure those of you who already own a Piraka or two can say that they suffer from a rare and deadly form of scoliosis. Alright, not quite, but the spines are severely contorted. Again, I have no clue as to why this is. My only guess would be that it was a mass production error.
Here's where it all boils down to whether the model is worth your money and time or not.
The Piraka aren't my favorite canister sets. But they do come with an assortment of new and interesting parts, which is always an excuse for the MOCist to pick up at least one. As a matter of fact, I actually own two Reidak's.
If you still haven't picked up a Piraka, you should consider snagging Reidak before we're washed into 2007.
And so concludes our Piraka reviews; I hope you found them all varied and informative. Make sure you thank Kex for taking the time to do the write-up and take all the pictures for this extensive look at Reidak. We still have a few more sets to review, and a little more time left to review them in, so keep an eye out in the coming weeks for more reviews!
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