Monday, June 27th, 2011 at 7:52pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
Another day, another Hero Factory 3.0 set review. This time, DeeVee takes a look at the new Nex. While it's only his second iteration, he too is a 3.0 hero. To learn about this set and to see if it's worth your while, read on!
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
Julius' second iteration (but 3.0 body) comes, like the rest of the third wave, in a lime-topped version of the last two canister waves. This is probably to allow kids to peek quickly into an aisle to see if the wave they want is there, and it's not a bad idea, but it's still taking some time to get used to. BIONICLE's colour-coded lids are very deeply driven into me.
The front has Nex ferociously flexing his feline finesse. And the back has Julius and Jimi joining forces to become Strex.
And the legal disclaimers! The more space they take up on the back of the canister, the better! They are the most perfect thing to have ever existed, and though these words make them blush, they are the only disclaimers for me. The only ones.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
Like the rest of the 3.0 wave, Julius utilizes basically the exact same build as the 2.0 wave did. That's not necessarily a bad thing, as, again, it's a neat and still so different experience that it still just fills me with inspiration and ideas when I use it.
Of course, it's still a really simple build, and it's an even simpler one for Julius than it was for his last build. Take that as you will.
He comes together quick and easy, ready to fight Makuta possessed Rahi.
I mean, Witch Doctor possessed Rahi.
I mean technorganic animals.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
Like with BirdBill, TigerJulius uses a lot of the same parts as his last version. Same size orange cladding, same hero chest plate, etc. But there are a few differences, and we'll get to those. First, the new parts you won't find in Julius' first set.
There's the large piece that Julius' claws attach to. I'd call it a paw, but Rocka's piece that exists for the same purpose is way more of a paw. So this is a thing. It has a ball socket on the underside, and the two ends have system clip rods. I like the use of the system beams for attachments, as this opens up a lot of possibilities with these new parts that BIONICLE didn't explore to such an extent. I do wish it had some technic connection points too, though.
Julius' claws are made of two rubbery points that attach at their base to Exo-Force robot arms. I love those robot arm parts, and having them all over the place makes me so so happy. Anyway, I digress. These new claws are fantastic in their simplicity. The rubber is a little unfortunate, but I understand the reasoning behind it. Kids are violent, you see.
Julius' sabre-toothed tiger helmet is awesome. The squinty eyes are a little odd, and then you realize it looks just like the cat sitting across from you at this exact moment and you're just like "wow, this is pitch-perfect." The tufts on the side of the helmet really pull the whole thing together. This is a tiger, no ifs ands or buts.
(Full disclosure, Tigers are my favourite animals, so I am in love with this helmet.)
The nametag is, like the rest of the 3.0 sets, molded in trans-dark green, and it looks fantastic. The sabre-toothed tiger image is glorious, and these tags don't look as out of place being green on the heroes as we all thought they would. They actually look fantastic. The fact that Julius' Hero Core is green probably helps in this instance.
Julius looks compact, muscular, and powerful. Perfect traits for a tiger. I can't get over how much of a tiger vibe he actually projects. The designers did a pitch-perfect job on this. The cladding being places on the side of his upper legs just completes the look. I wish the backs weren't so empty still, and I hope that TLG addresses this eventually.
Julius wears his weapon on the middle joint of his lower arm, and this means he gets two orange fists. Hecks yes! This looks so much better than having it used as his hand like the first wave did.
Compared to his previous incarnation, I think he looks a little more impressive. I loved the white, but its removal gives the set a much more simple and effective colouring. He's gained a bit, he now uses the wider torso versus his original narrower torso, and for the Tiger motif, I think this is appropriate. I like his look in this iteration a lot more than I did his 2.0 counterpart, and I loved Julius 2.0 (1.0).
The other half of the fun is in playing with the set. How well does the set function and is it enjoyable to play with?
Julius has the same points of articulation we're used to, plus each claw on his shield move individually. Which is kind of neat, to be honest.
I love this set.
He can achieve some really fun poses, and he can totes take on the forces of evil. Or forces of brainwashed villains forced against their own desires to commit intergalactic crimes. You know, whatev.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
- Great helmet
- Solidified colouring
- Perfectly done animal motif
- Fantastic tag
What's not to like?
- A little predictable
- Empty back
Like I said, I love this set. Of the two Heroes I currently own, I love Julius the most. I suppose that's not hard when you only have two, but like I said, I have a preconceived bias towards tigers. (And wolves, but that's a different story and a different reviewer, sadly). Should you buy Julius?
Should the legal disclaimers be mine?
Of course you should. This set is awesome.
Thanks again to TLG for their gracious donation! You guys are awesome.
And thanks to DeeVee for this review. This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the new 3.0 sets, we'll have plenty more reviews for you in the coming weeks. So keep checking back right here on BZPower!
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