I'll mostly be using this blog as a means of expressing excitement and thoughts for things related to Bionicle and Bionicle itself, as well as showing off stuff that I'll obtain in the future and possibly a few things from the past.
I'll mostly be using this blog as a means of expressing excitement and thoughts for things related to Bionicle and Bionicle itself, as well as showing off stuff that I'll obtain in the future and possibly a few things from the past.
We need more of them. They're not ugly like translucent orange (seriously, does translucent orange go with anything? It's such a ugly translucent colour.), they're not overused like translucent neon green, and they're not translucent green. They're also not translucent blue which is kinda meh.
Although I do think translucent pieces are starting to lose their novelty, so we'll probably stop seeing them for a while. Not to mention, aren't translucent bone pieces weaker than regular ones due to being a different plastic or something?
On the subject of pieces breaking: CCBS friction extenders break way too easily. They're easily the CCBS that breaks the quickest and the most easily in my experience. Which kinda reminds of the 2010 pieces, they felt strong but it was negated by how quickly they broke. Even if you didn't do anything with them. Wow, that also made me realise: considering CCBS was only three years away or so, the new 2008 molds were a really bad idea due to how easily they broke compared to the pieces immediately before them.
(what if 2015 is a trick and all the Toa being heroes is a misdirection? Instead something bad happens and the Protectors must become the heroes they believed the Toa to have been.)
I bought the Razer DeathAdder Chroma today (I didn't buy it for any particular reason other than that it was the cheapest Razer mouse in the store). I'm not really sure that the two buttons on the side will be enough; I'd rather three so that I can optimize it for Team Fortress 2, but for now it will do fine.
There was one with six buttons on the side that I really wanted, but that one was like 40 dollars more and I was all like "NOPE"
Next step is a headset with a microphone - I saw one at the store that I almost bought but it's for sale online for about $40 instead of the usual $70, so I'll probably be ordering it
Anyway, that's all for now
I was going to go with "Has Lego officially announced it", but then I remembered those BZP articles on stuff found through "guessing URLs" which apparently don't count?
Aside from that one exception though the policy is really, truly, unbelievably, extremely simple.
Feel free to use this handy image when teling people why you're closing their topics or whatever, staff, I won't even ask for anything in return
The current list:
- The Master Sword
- Pohatu: Master of Stone
- The Forgotten Warrior
- Grochi ad Infinitum
- One-Eyed Construct
- Mushy the Mushroom
- Tyler Durden
Sometimes, just sometimes, Gokukoku no Brynhildr is really funny.
It's probably even better without context.
(this manga is messed up, though. but it was done by the same person as elfen lied, so not much of a surprise i guess...)
I write a lot about strong female characters here, heck, it was my first post. It’s still something I really care about, seeing how often it pops up in my blog posts here. I’ve got a small list of characters I bring up often: Black Widow, Captain Marvel, Chloe Frazer, Katniss Everdeen, Zoë Washburne, etc.
Thing is, it’s easy to conflate the idea of a strong female characters with that of a woman who kicks butt. When we compare Katniss from The Hunger Games to Bella Swan from Twilight the former is clearly the stronger character. When asked why the easy answer is that she does stuff, herein taking charge and fighting. So does Captain Marvel. And Arya Stark.
We see this particularly in areas which already have a history of relegating women to the back burner, like video games or the action adventure genre. Damsels meant to be saved by strong men, the voice of reason, or to be relegated to being a person of support. Thus being promoted to action hero seems like quite the step up.
So comes the masculinization of women, where women are placed in male roles and can do everything a man can. The new question that comes with this is whether they’re losing depth because they’re becoming less of a woman. After all, they’re pushing for violence, a ‘masculine’ way of problem solving, instead of finding non-violent means of conflict-resolution, like manipulation. But assuming a strong female character must be good in combat is a flawed idea. Women – people – don’t have to go around kicking butt to be a strong character.
Take Zoë and Inara from Firefly, both arguably strong female characters. The former, Serenity’s tough-as-nails first mate, is awesome in the more masculine way. Inara, however, wielding diplomacy, is as strong without being masculinized. She’s strong on her own terms, kicking proverbial butt without having to carry a weapon.
So which portrayal is more feministic? Both masculinizing women and confining them to feminine traits run contrary to feminism since it genders a set of actions and traits. Is Zoë stronger since she’s nearly indistinguishable from a man? Or is it Inara, who fights in a more ‘feminine’ sphere.
So now what? Women are, surprise, people; people are, also surprise, different. And people do different things. To say that a man can succeed as a character in both action and drama genres but a woman only truly succeeds if she’s placed in a drama is a terrifyingly narrow view. If we want to advance the role of women in fiction, we can’t limit them to certain roles. We need women doing everything.
This is one of the reasons I love Game of Thrones. There’s a great deal of variety to the roles women play, and a lot of them are wonderfully well written. Ygritte the Wildling archer and Margaery the politicking queen-to-be are very different women and both great characters. Yet neither would work in the other’s roles; they’re strong on their own terms and in their own ways. You can’t discredit Margaery because she’s worming her way to the top of the political sphere because she’s not running around with a sword, likewise with Ygritte for being an archer rather than a politician. This show, known for the HBO-iness of its content, displays a great deal of nuance and variety with its women. Sure, some are problematic and shallow, but there remains the potential for a woman to be strong, no matter her position.
To return to the comparison of Zoë and Inara in Firefly, we need to accept both as strong women because choosing one over the other would confine the ways in which a female character could be strong. Kaylee, the mechanic, though she’s neither forceful nor a fighter, can hold her own and adds necessary element to the crew. Even River, who more often than not seems to fulfill the role of damsel, is fully realized and not just a shadowy archetype.
There is a danger in making all female characters masculine, but the same could be said of making all female characters the same kind of anything; we need women portrayed in every field. Soldiers, spies, engineers, doctors, and so on. A truly inclusive media should be just that: inclusive.
I guess that's what happens if you have a whole backlog of models only ever finished in LEGO Digital Designer and then decide to try them out as physical models. Five are done (pictures will follow in the next few weeks I hope), and two more are WIPs, including an old favourite I never got to finish before: A Minifig scale AT-AT walker. Head and feet are done already, the rest will follow.
I also noticed my BFTGM entry, Mythosix, that was withdrawn from the contest but came to work with me, keeps moving around the Bionicle design area. XD
So, where do I start? My new year's eve was immediately turned into a downer when my mom went to the hospital. She stayed there for a good 2 weeks (she's back home, and healthier than she's felt "since 1998"). From that day til pretty much last week I've been working my mask off in project after project. While this basically means it ate up all of my time I wanted to wisely spend on BS01, it does mean I am happily building up a budget that will help go towards (POSSIBLY) a better server, which means I can possibly bring HS01 back full-time. No promises there yet.
Christmas stuffs, not much happened. I took it upon myself to buy all my own decent gifts; This included all six Toa Masters (I'm keeping it going for ya, Jason), two Protectors (Earth and Water), LoSS, the Double Decker Couch and Bad Cop's new car set. Two of the Toa, LoSS, and the two Lego Movie sets are still in shipping as I type this, but I have four of the Toa already built (Lewa, Pohatu, Gali, Kopaka). I also treated myself to the EMP Museum up in Seattle on a slow day, which means I got to see the Vince Lombardi trophy the Seahawks won last year in person, plus a few other things that made my day. I absolutely love the EMP, it is a wonderful venue, and I look forward to the day when we return to it with even more Lego displays.
Currently debating whether or not to retire this laptop for a touchscreen to get ahead of Windows 10's release, or jus build a new desktop instead and let the laptop ride until summer. If I do the desktop method, I'd want a new monitor and peripherals too, so it'd probably cost the same as a touchscreen laptop. Halp?
Otherwise, not much else big is happening. It occurred to me while writing this that in 2 days I'll have been on BZPower for 12 years. That's an interesting thought; I'm only 27 years old, which means in three years I've have been on BZPower for half my lifetime exactly.
And with all that, I have only one more thing to say: Go Seahawks.
Weekly Wonderings: Premier Edition.
Since this week is the Premie Edition, I will be asking two questions, or wonderings if you will. This week I'd like to have your guy's input on Energy Hounds amphibiousness, and what element a staff I made would better line up with.
WW1- On the subject of Energy hounds being amphibious, at least in the universe I am trying to build, which version looks better?
WW2- Which element would this staff be better associated with, lightning or magnetism? If you think it should belong to a different element than the two I mentioned, let me know as well.
Any input is appreciated, and in the famous words of JeremyJahns, "Comment below, let me know."
Let me know if you add me, so that I can add you!
Games I have:
Animal Crossing (Haven't started yet)
Fire Emblem Awakening
Luigi's Mansion Dark Moon
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate
Mario & Luigi Dream Team
Super Mario 3D Land
~ (I have 13 of 13 total.) ~
Protectors ~ 6/6
#70778 Protector of Jungle
#70779 Protector of Stone
#70780 Protector of Water
#70781 Protector of Earth
#70782 Protector of Ice
#70783 Protector of Fire
Masters ~ 6/6
#70784 Lewa - Master of Jungle
#70785 Pohatu - Master of Stone
#70786 Gali - Master of Water
#70787 Tahu - Master of Fire
#70788 Kopaka - Master of Ice
#70789 Onua - Master of Earth
Creatures ~ 1/1
#70790 Lord of Skull Spiders
~ Credit to Dorek for the inspiration on these.
Thoughts, massive spoilers, click and read at your own risk:(If you ever want to play this game, don't click it, I foolishly browsed Transistor's workshop page and all it takes is one person who doesn't know what a spoiler tag is to ruin the ending.)
I've also had Zia's song stuck in my head most of the day.
The mantis cringed at the Captain’s voice screaming through his earpiece, which was more than a little too loud for his liking. He turned to his companion, a fearsome gray lanius who was taking quite a bit of satisfaction from destroying his surroundings.
“But Captain,” Charlie gleefully chuckled as he ripped a control panel out of the wall, “Eoin and I are having so much fun! Such work is indeed its own reward.”
“Speak for yourself, buddy. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again- you need a different hobby,” Eoin grumbled. The mantis lifted one of his green claws to the side of his head, adjusting his earpiece as he addressed the captain. “Prior, beam us back anytime. By anytime I mean now.”
Back on The Stardust, Captain Leopold Prior let a small smile shine through, a rarity as of late. It was nice to have another crew member, albeit one who was not human like himself, who shared his wit on this starship, but the incredible responsibility of saving the entire United Federation had dulled his own sense of humor. His fingers flew across the HUD in front of him, pressing various floating buttons as he glanced back and forth between several displays of his ship’s adversary- the Rebel Flagship, an enormous monstrosity that was the cornerstone of the Rebel Fleet.
“Teleporter’s still cooling down, but you’ll be out soon. Boyega, how are the weapons looking?”
Major Thaddeus Boyega was similarly engaged in his own controls in the weapons room. “Burst laser and breach missile fully charged. Permission to fire?”
“Let ‘er have it, try to hit their shield system and their piloting.”
Boyega frowned, always logical and always solemn. “Prior, I don’t believe this is the best course of action at the moment. I’d suggest we eliminate their shields and their mind control system instead.”
Before, Prior would have either dismissed Boyega’s advice with a humorous remark or angrily ignored it. However, the journey to the Federation Base and the current battle had changed his demeanor considerably. “Whatever you think is best. Just make sure to hit them hard.” Nodding, Boyega set the targets of the weapons on his computer and fired.
Outside of the ship, The Stardust’s weaponry let loose. A huge rocket fired from a launcher attached to the hull, followed quickly by three short laser bursts. The rocket hit the Flagship with a spectacular soundless explosion, completely eliminating its remaining shields. One of the lasers missed its target, but the other two hit the part of the Flagship’s hull covering its mind control system, disabling it.
A faint whoosh alerted Prior that Charlie and Eoin had been successfully beamed back from the Flagship. Unfortunately, this was the least of his concerns, as red letters flashed repeatedly on the screen in front of him as sirens accompanied by an automated voice sounded throughout the ship.
WARNING: POWER SURGE DETECTED
Prior hurriedly attempted to activate the ship’s cloaking function, but to no avail- the system was still cooling down from the last time he had used it. Cursing, he turned on communications for the entire ship so that the entire crew could hear him.
“Looks like we’re gonna have to tough this one out, guys. Brace! Diaz, get ready to dodge.”
Jessica Diaz, the ship’s engineer, was too nervous to reply. Formerly a Federation linguist and expert of alien culture, she was beginning to have some regrets about joining the crew all those sectors ago. But she had been friends with Prior at the Federation Academy, and journeying across the stars certainly had been the experience of a lifetime. She had made numerous new friends and discovered bravery within herself she had never known existed. So she did what Prior said and braced.
The captain could only watch as innumerable small cannons popped out of the Flagship’s hull, glowing bright with energy. At once, they fired, several green bolts flying towards The Stardust. Prior grasped at the manual controls of the ship. Some of the bolts hit harmlessly against the ship’s shields, while the captain managed to evade others. Two managed to find their way to the hull, rattling the entire ship and almost knocking Prior off of his feet. Adjusting himself, Prior glanced at the HUD and noticed with alarm that the shield operation room was on fire.
Dr. Jones attempted to get up, barely managing to straighten himself against the wall. The dazed engi looked around at the destruction before him. Several fires blazed around the shield operation room, destroying machinery and slowly lowering the power of The Stardust’s shields.
“Jones, put out those fires, now!”
Jones, usually the cheery sort, found difficulty finding positivity in this situation. “Task impossible, resubmit request at a later time.”
His optimism was soon restored as a door on the wall opened to reveal a zoltan woman carrying two fire extinguishers, one of which she tossed to Jones. He gratefully caught it and, despite not being able to smile, the engi’s voice brimmed with gratitude.
The zoltan known only as Envoy smiled, always happy to see the unassuming engi. However, as there were more pressing matters at hand, she turned back to the fire and began to spray the extinguishing agent it as Jones did the same, slowly but surely putting out the inferno.
As the fires began to die down, Envoy glanced over at Jones to see that some of his mechanical plating was charred. Even then, the engi was still attempting to repair the damage done.
“Jones, you’re being ridiculous. Get healed up.”
“Negative. Adequate health to continue repairs.”
“Get to the medbay or those burns won’t be the only thing hurting you.”
Jones nervously looked up at the zoltan. “Meaning acknowledged,” was all he said before he sprinted to the medbay surprisingly quickly for someone who was injured as Envoy chuckled to herself.
Once inside, Jones relaxed as the medbay’s healing nanomachines flooded through his body and repaired the damage done by the fire. Also present was fellow engi Starger, who had sustained damage from the second bolt of energy that had hit the ship.
Starger was a bit more cynical than Dr. Jones. “Mission progress = satisfactory, agreed?” he muttered sarcastically.
If engi were able to create facial expressions, Jones would have smiled. “Hope is valuable in such situations. Compensation for when ability is not adequate.”
Back in the pilot’s room, Captain Prior glanced at the display that showed the various systems and subsystems of the Rebel Flagship. Just as in The Stardust’s shield room, fires blazed in the Flagship’s systems, but to a much greater extent. It had sustained quite a bit of damage, more damage than any ship should be able to. But if the readings before Prior were correct, the ship’s hull integrity was very low…
He didn’t want to believe it until he saw the Flagship crumble with his own two eyes. “Boyega, give me some good news on the weapons!”
“Lasers and missile almost fully charged. Give me the order and I’ll fire.”
Prior knew that he should give the order now, but his old ego crept back and he took a moment to admire. Admire everything that had come before, all that his crew had accomplished. All brilliant, brave, and more than any captain could have asked for. He would certainly miss the adventures of The Stardust, and yet he knew that he would carry all that he had gained from their journey for the rest of his life. And so he spoke.
“Let’s blow ‘em out of the water, Boyega. Open fire.”
In reality, the missile was all that was truly needed. Regardless, both it and the laser bursts struck the hull of the Rebel Flagship until it could take no more. Fissures appeared throughout the enormous ship, numerous explosions bursting and almost immediately extinguishing themselves in the vacuum of space. Hunks of metal flew in random trajectories from the ship as it was consumed by the heavy damage it had sustained, until finally it shattered completely into several pieces.
It was over. The Flagship was destroyed. The Federation was saved.
There were a few seconds of silence. The crew of The Stardust stared at the screens in their rooms, dumbfounded at the spectacular scene of destruction before them.
Then cheers resounded through the communications mixed with the laughter of those who had faced death and had done something truly great as a result. Listening to all of this, Prior simply leaned back in his captain’s chair and smiled.
Thanks to the valiant effort of:
And her successful crew:
Prior, Diaz, Boyega, Jones, Charlie, Eoin, Envoy and Starger
The Rebel’s flagship was destroyed, throwing their fleet into chaos and ensuring a Federation victory
A quick, hasty thing I wrote after my most recent return to FTL: Faster than Light. I had decided to return to it because I was bothered that none of my high scores were with the Kestrel Type A ship, which being the nerd that I am I consider to be the "canon" ship. So I decided to try again to create the playthrough that would be the definitive FTL game for myself.
The Stardust succeeded pretty well, blowing my other high scores away at 5150 (playing on Normal)- 300+ more than my previous high score. In addition, one of my crew, Dr. Jones, claimed the spot of Most Repairs at 55. Also I managed to collect exactly 2300 scrap, somehow.
More than that, I connected with the crew in a way I haven't in a while, which is something that really got my creative gears going and will hopefully help me with a more ambitious original writing project that you'll see some of soon.
Now to destroy the Flagship with the three ship types with which I have yet to beat the game...
First off is Gali. My first reaction is that she needs more of that lovely dark azure. I might buy a second just to get more of those armor pieces. The thing that really bugs me about her is her shoulder armor. They attached it to the rotating beam that’s supposed to be her gear function. WHY? Not only does the armor look kinda meh (seriously, what’s the need with shoulder armor that extends above the heads?) but now it also messes up the arm functions. It has since been removed.
I’m also not a big fan of her trident. Sure, it’s a somewhat decent design, but it’s waaaay too big, especially considering she’s one of the smaller Toa. I instead broke it down into hatchets, more similar to what they wanted me to use on Lewa. (But I refused on him.) I think the new axes closer resemble her original hooks, of which I was always a fan of. Plus, their size is more manageable for her. I also took out one of the extra gears that was used in her function. She initially came with two in order to provide the friction to hold the trident, but when I got rid of that, it was a little too much friction, so I took one out to give her a little more room. (As fun as those added friction gears are at keeping things straight, they totally take away the fun of quick arm flailing by spinning the gears on the back, which is something I liked. . . but maybe that’s just nostalgia again.)
Without the bulky shoulder armor or giant weapon, Gali feels more properly slimmed down and looks quite good. Heck, I’m even getting used to the mask, which I guess invoked more of the MoL Kaukau shape. I mean, it’s still a far cry from the Kaukau and Kaukau Nuva, but it feels recognizable. (Lewa’s, however, is still a far cry from any of his previous appearances.)
Next I picked up Kopaka. I was always used to the tall and narrow versions of Kopaka, but I can dig the muscled-up version too. I do like their shoulder design for him, which fills in the gaps nicely but also doesn’t really affect his gear system at all. On some of the other Toa, I was disappointed when there was only a gear function for one of the arms, but for Kopaka this method makes sense. I do wish he had a slightly better sword (or rather a spear, I think) and shield. The pieces are good and all, but I wish his shield was more circular. (It reminds me more of Glatorian Mata Nui’s scarab shield, which is not a bad design, just for me it’s not Kopaka. Again, I think that’s mostly nostalgia.)
The elephant in the room is Kopaka’s legs. They used those 3L beams with a ball joint in the center to position armor on the front and back of Kopaka’s lower legs. I like the attempt, and the pieces are great, but gosh it looks ugly when viewed from the wide. The porportions are just entirely wrong. I quickly just put the front armor on straight to the leg joint. He’s not as armored, but it flows better. Also, his upper leg armor comes with stickers, which I regretfully applied, since armor in that style only appears in white here. But the design looks great on Kopaka, so the stickers stay. Oh, and the mask is great, probably the one that closest resembles the original. (Granted, it doesn’t quite have the circular look of the original Akaku, but looks like the Nuva. And really, if the three lenses are there, it’ll be an Akaku no matter what. Those seem to help make all of Kopaka’s masks recognizable.)
Then I bought Tahu, who is again the Toa who’s hogging all the limelight. He again has his shoulder armor attached to his rotating shoulder, which I dislike. It was easy enough to switch it around a bit so it’s connected to the front body piece, but is still kinda annoying that they designed it that way. The connection for the gold swords on the back is pretty nifty, although I preferred them angled down instead of up. His swords are a great design, resembling Lhikan’s quite a bit. It was always a shame the original Tahu didn’t have his own lava surfboard, and Tahu Nuva’s doesn’t quite compare to this new style. They make for good melee swords too. However, like Kopaka, his lower leg armor is pitiful. Those giant torso armor pieces look good from maybe one angle, but from the side or back they just look too empty. Not a bad Toa, and his mask is clearly based off the Hau, but I guess not quite my favorite.
Finally, I come to Onua. Man, Onua’s been hulked up. Like, seriously, that chest piece was originally used on the Hulk. I like their method for extending the arm functions, and adding function to it with the socket piece on the back. It slows down the motion considerably, but when he’s holding onto his massive hammer, that helps, and makes it feel like there’s some force behind his swings. I do like the design of his hammer, with the Ben 10 foot piece fitting in quite well. Meanwhile, his weapons are very versatile. I like how they act as claws and armor individually, but their combination into the hammer is very awesome. Onua does come with four, but I could definitely use more. Speaking of the shoulder armor, its design allows it to cover the shoulders and gear function quite well without actually disrupting it.
Onua’s color scheme is a little out there. I love the inclusion of purple, although it would’ve been nice to see more of the trans purple limb elements included, since they appeared on the legs but not the arms, where the gray version of the piece was used. The gold armor is supposed to fit with Onua’s gold, powered up form, but I still think those pieces would look better in silver. As soon as I can get some extras, I’ll be switching them out. His torso piece also uses a sticker, unlike any of the other Toa’s torso designs, but in this case I’m fine with it, since I don’t see myself repurposing that torso armor anytime soon anyway. His mask also closely resembles a Pakari is design, but seems way too small for such a large character, especially since the original Pakari was a sizeable mask.
So all these Toa definitely have their ups and downs. The colors are all great, including a fair amount of rare shades, even if that does make MOCing in that color very difficult. The gear functions work on all of them, pending some shoulder armor redesigns. I think I have made slight modifications to all of my Toa, some more than others, because each one tended to have something about their design that I didn’t like, and also making it really hard to pick a favorite, because I have issues with them all. Still, there’s nothing quite like the feeling of collecting and building a Toa team again, which I haven’t really done since Tahu and the gang last appeared in 2008. So worthwhile sets, and now I have all six Toa on display, guarding my apartment.
I should also mention that the Skull Spiders are nice. I kind of wish the green ones had been in a more common shade, or that made of them had included stinger tails like the ones that came with Pohatu. They’re kinda meh on their own, but now I’ve got my own small swarm collection, and they’re trying to take over Benny’s Spaceship now. See, fun! I’ve also built a simple display stand for the gold masks, although having seen better ones posted online, I might redesign it.
I’m still considering purchasing the Lord of Skull Spiders and the Protector of Earth, and then maybe an extra Pohatu and Gali for their pieces. And then I need to think of some cool ways to MOC with these new pieces. (Maybe, my Toa might not come apart for a while.)
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