You may be grateful to know that I shall not (quite) be making as annoyingly a long post this time (relatively ). And no controversy! It's still a decently long read so prepare your 'tl;dr's.
As per usual, I'll start with some context before eventually presenting the NuvaTube inquiry.
The Spherus Magnans have displayed some very, very advanced technology, much of which is beyond scientific understanding (and probably always will be). More specifically, the Great Beings displayed this incredible technology, principally via the Mata Nui Robot’s systems.
If you think about it, we’re talkin’ about teleportation, large energy/mass exchanges, atomic control, space-time manipulation, graviton generation, practically limitless energy, advanced genetic expertise, radical nanotechnology, dimensional engineering, interstellar travel and so on and so forth. We could go on for eons.
So, what kind of weapons do the macro-tech workers of this hyper advanced system use? Apparently, swords and spears. What...no...that can’t be right...right?
I shall remedy the irritated look on your face by acknowledging weapons like Zamor/Rhotuka/Impact Crystal/Kanoka Launchers, which display interesting, advanced destructive abilities. I particularly like the Zamor Launchers’ ability to get past cover and effect targets without worrying about physical armour. My point is; I know they have advanced weapons.
There is the argument that just because humans can use heat-seeking missiles, it doesn’t suddenly mean that a big stick isn’t an effective weapon. Maybe this principle still applies to the MU/Glatorian? If that were the case, and swords are effective against MU inhabitants, I would expect something like a conventional firearm to be common too, and that long ranged combat would be the norm. The biggest reason that close quarters combat left warfare in human history was that it was usually pointless to carry a bothersome melee weapon when your enemies can just take you out in a few hits or less with a single weapon, at close and long range.
If we look at Toa, for example, we see that they almost always carry a melee weapon. Sure, I get that it focuses their Elemental Power, which has lots of ranged potential, whilst doubling up as a good close quarters option. I’m just wondering why there aren’t more weapons like Cordak Blasters and Lightstone rifles around, it would seem to me that they should be the norm, and then the more famous weapons were the specialist armaments.
It’s just, why do all the baddies (like the Dark Hunters) bother with close quarters fighting (I’ll include throwing fireballs from relatively short distance as close quarters, since it’s all done within a comfortable visual range), when they could just pick up a Lightstone rifle and snipe a group of Toa almost as easily as a group of Matoran.
As I have previously done, I’ll acknowledge the real word reasons. Namely: “swords-fights-are-always-more-epic” and “Guns don’t look as good in Lego and don’t really work as toy functions which are good selling points for kids’ toys”. But this is about trying to find in-canon rational.
The only real counter-argument I could think of was that Bionicle armour is generally too tough for bullets, but that completely breaks down if swords are still effective, so that can't be it. Even if Toa are far stronger than we realise I’m sure they can come up with ballistics that work just as well, if not better, and that such weapons would be highly pervasive. Of course, there are much more exotic weapons, as I said, but the question stands:
Where are all the guns?