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Why so much hate for Nuva Masks?

Kanohi Nuva Y/N?  

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(okay i ticked the poll box, i'm pretty sure this should be a poll? if not oops.)

 

So, i've been looking around and noticed there seems to be a general agreement of dislike for.... the Kanohi Nuva?

 

and i was thinking not too long ago, why? from my knowledge, the Kanohi Nuva were designed to look like th original six Kanohi, only they'd been stretched, warped, and molded into new, broader forms by the Energised Protodermis, and they capture the look! (plus they're the kanohi with the smoooothest curves and forms, like well-carved & polished wood!)

 

so i'm asking here, do you hate the Kanohi Nuva, and if so, why? o:

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I've kind of got mixed feelings on the Kanohi Nuva. Like, on the one hand, they became fairly iconic in their own right, especially after featuring in Bionicle: Mask of Light. And like many even more hated masks, I warmed up to them after painstakingly analyzing them to find out just what commonalities they had with the previous versions of the mask (because many of those commonalities aren't obvious).

 

On the other hand, there are many things that bothered me about them even when they were new. Why is the Akaku Nuva more Hau-shaped than Akaku-shaped, and why does it have a microphone? Why do the Kakama Nuva, Miru Nuva, and Kaukau Nuva have so little in common with the Kakama, Miru, and Kaukau? Why do they look so fleshy and organic? Why are they all so huge?

 

In general, G1 Bionicle didn't handle mask upgrades all that well, though it started to get better about it in 2008, and I think they finally started to master it around 2012 or 2013 in the Hero Factory theme. I think the G2 masks really exemplify how far LEGO has come. You don't have to stretch your brain so much to see the similarities with the masks they're based on. The 2015 masks of Fire, Ice, Earth, and Stone are all instantly recognizable for what they're based on, the Masks of Water and Jungle only slightly less so. And the 2016 versions, in turn, closely resemble the 2015 versions, but with new unifying motifs like the crystal patterns on the foreheads or the Nuva symbol runes.

Edited by Aanchir
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Why don't I like them? Because they're ugly. Because they're all curvy and bulky and didn't mesh well with the building system back then. (Or now, as far as I'm concerned.) No, I do not think they greatly resembled the previous masks at all, which is something I think they're doing well on for the 2016 Toa. But for the Nuva, I think the mask designs were a miss, and even after 9 years of classic Bionicle, they are still among my least favorite mask groupings.

 

[/strong opinion on something trivial]

 

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1. I like the Kanohi Nuva Masks. I can't that they're favorite masks out of all the Kanohi, but I do like them a lot. 

 

2. The Hau Nuva. It may not be as cool as the original Hau, but it has enough of a 'Hau' feel to it that you could recognize it as that mask. Plus I thought it looked good on Tahu Nuva.

 

3. I liked all the Nuva Masks, but if I had to pick my least favorite, it would be the Kaukau Nuva. It just had an odd look IMO. But I still liked it though.


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I have never had a problem with any mask in Bionicle because I've learned to appreciate the beauty within each of them. The Nuva are sleek and elegant masks, but they are disliked because they didn't resemble any of the 2001 masks. Some of the more hardened members of the fandom like their masks to conform to a specific design (typically the design in question corresponds with the year that they discovered the toy line). 


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I just have never understood why three of them were very clearly different variations of the hau. Just why?


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Since all of them look so curved, smooth, and almost organic, I'm tempted to think this was practice for the Inika's rubber masks.  Or at least they have some relation to the Inika masks, I'm not sure what.

 

I don't hate the Nuva masks that much, it's just I like other masks more.  Though I did like them a lot more after looking at the illustrations for Brutaka's Game (a fanfic on deviantArt).

 

Still, they ARE a pain to use on something other than a Toa Nuva.  I keep ending up with cartoonishly large heads on a medium-size body.


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I think some are better than others. I love the Miru Nuva and the Kaukau Nuva's a decent mask. The others are okay, but not great.


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I like some of them. The only ones I dislike are the Kakama and the Kaukau.

 

Frankly, the Kakama Nuva is the ugliest face in Bionicle. It looks like a fat, wrinkled Ewok.

 

But the rest of the masks are alright, in fact the Hau and the Miru are fantastic masks, and the Akaku Nuva might even be better than the original version.

 

There is one thing I dislike about all the Nuva masks, and that is their size. They were just way too big.

Edited by Nescent

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I never had a problem with the Nuva masks. I actually got into Bionicle in '04 so I actually saw the Nuva masks before the originals and I never thought they looked bad. Of the lot, my favorite is the Pakari Nuva. I don't know why I like it, but I do; I feel that it suits Onua's personality. I will agree that the Kaukau Nuva is pretty bad. It's definitely my least favorite of the bunch. I just don't like the shape of it or the expression on the face.


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Again the Kaukau gets a down vote. Both the Classic 2002 Nuva and the 2008 version are pretty bad. It took Lego 14 years from the release of the first Gali to finally give her a good mask again! 

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The Kanohi Nuva were designed to look like the original six?  :superfunny: That's certainly the opposite of what the design team was thinking when they molded the Kanohi Nuva. You are right about the stretched & warped look, the masks pull it off well. Maybe a little too well, they're really curvy & bulky. I also find your definition of smooth weird, the Kanohi Nuva are anything but smooth, just look at Tahu's, Pohatu's Onua's & Kopaka's masks. 

 

To repeat what Aanchir said, the masks are iconic, but the similarities, if any, are few and far between. 

  1. The only thing the Hau and the Nuva counterpart share is the opening in the mouth and eyeholes. Maybe if the Nuva version had some slits on the cheeks and a vent at the top, it would have more resemblance.
  2. The Kaukau & the Nuva upgrade only share the vents on the side and the respirator in the middle. The Nuva version also swaps out the visor of the original mask for some fins. 
  3. The Miru Nuva grew spikes, shrunken eyes, teeth and kept the cheek holes from the original Miru. Everything else that made the original mask of levitation was thrown away.   
  4. The Kakama Nuva is the biggest offender, it lacks the aerodynamic shape of the original, trades the cheek things on the side for more spikes and it looks pretty ugly.
  5. The Pakari Nuva is tied with the Kakama Nuva for being the mask to have the least amount of resemblance to its original mask. It looks like a bunch of rocks glued onto a mask. 
  6. The Akaku Nuva has a scope, but not much similarity between the original. It's not hard to see why it looks bad when compared to the original version. 

I also don't understand how anyone can call the masks: 

 

sleek and elegant

The Hau is a bulging mess of veins, the Kaukau looks less streamlined and suited for swimming than the original version, the Miru's lost its aerodynamic shape, the Kakama is no longer small and compact, it has become this unwieldy mask that would weigh down the user, the Pakari is the exact opposite of elegant or sleek & the Akaku is the only Nuva mask that gets close to the meanings of the two words. 

 

On another note, has anyone criticized or seen dislike of the Toa Metru's kanohi for not resembling the noble versions? 

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The Miru Nuva seems like the best of the bunch to me, if only because it looks the most reasonable out of all the weirdness.

 

The Akaku Nuva is probably my least favorite mask ever, because it looks like it's trying to have multiple looks at once.  It's blobby like the others, but the left forehead looks like it's trying to be smooth while the rest has these weird technological elements that don't fit at all.  The scope doesn't even look like it'd be functional, more like a play-doh imitation that was stuck over Kopaka's right eye.

 

Overall, they really aren't good masks.  They don't match the sharp-edged gears-and-pistons look of BIONICLE at the time, nor do they even match the smooth Nuva armor that was introduced with them.


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I don't understand why there is so much hate for them. Honestly, they don't have to look like the old ones. There is no style to conform to. When the only other change they made to the Toa was add a bit of silver and bulk, they need to look different.

 

Fun fact: From 2002 onwards I group the Toa Mata/Nuva based on their masks. Kopaka, Tahu, and Gali (the lumpies) and Lewa, Pohatu, and Onua (the spikies)

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On another note, has anyone criticized or seen dislike of the Toa Metru's kanohi for not resembling the noble versions?

Well, the Great Huna has the same single eyehole as the Noble version.  The Great Rau keeps the noble's smooth and rounded appearance.  Other than that, though, they pretty much winged it with the other four--well, not completely winged it.  If you think about it, they do seem to fit the Matoran's jobs on Metru Nui.

 

The ventilation pipes on the Huna would be useful in a sooty, smoky forge, so would the blue visor that shows up in the comics--like a welding helmet.

Onewa has a similar red visor in the comics, which would be nice to keep the sun out of your eyes in the Sculpture Fields.

The Matutu's eyepiece would be useful for watching the stars or examining ancient records up close.

The Ruru's vents might help keep out the musty smells of the Archives or come in handy in a mine.  Also, it looks pretty rugged, which seems to fit life underground.

So does the Mahiki, it looks like a helmet that can be thrown around all over the place but still keeps your head safe.  Something you'd want when testing vehicles in the Moto-Hub, or riding chutes, or any number of the ridiculous reckless things Le-Matoran are known to do.

And, thoughtfully, the Rau's eyepieces are covered over like swimming goggles.

 

[/Metru Nui fanboy rant]

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On another note, has anyone criticized or seen dislike of the Toa Metru's kanohi for not resembling the noble versions?

Yes. That's a pretty common train of thought when the topic of the Metru masks comes up (that and the lack of colour availability).


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They're ugly, ugly masks. I like the Miru and the Hau to an extent, but the rest are all awul. I marked the Kaukau down as the worst, but it could easily have been the Kakama or Pakari.

 

I know people had their issues with the 2008 versions of these masks, but every time I see someone complain that they don't look like the 2002 versions I can't help but disagree very very strongly. I think the fact that they don't look like that is one of the better things about them, honestly. Because again. These things are pretty hideous.

Edited by dotcom

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I like most of them. The Akaku is the only one I really dislike, because it looks like an old bald guy with an oversized monocle. :P The others are alright in their own respects. The thing is, most people try to rate them based on their previous versions. If you just look at them as their own thing, most of them hold up pretty well. Sure, the Hau looks like it's covered in bulked out veins, and the Kaukau has a pig nose, but for the most part, they have some nice designs. I really liked how thy all made an effort to not look too generic, but had a very distinct personality to them.

 

The one thing that I like about the Hau Nuva (as Arnold also pointed out), is that the eyeholes and mouth are almost a perfect match of their predecessor. If you line them up, the mouths are the same size and shape, and the eyes match perfectly. All that changed was the outer shaping, which felt cool to me--gave the impression that it really was a stronger, more powerful version of the Hau.

 

I have a special place in my heart for anything Kakama-related, so that one gets a free pass, and it looks great on a MOC I finished up a few months back.

 

But the Akaku Nuva still sucks. :P

 

EDIT: To those saying the masks look too big, that's a good thing! I was trying to build a Toa version on my Self-MOC, but the regular Kakama looked ridiculously small on it. I switched it out for a Kakama Nuva, added some spikes to one of the shoulders, and it worked perfectly! Bigger mask means bigger MOC.

 

And for those saying the Kakama Nuva looks ugly: I will find you.... :evilgrin:

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For me personally, I can't really say I hate the Kanohi Nuva as a whole, but it comes down to masks and colors. Some of the masks look amazing in colors other than the one they were in originally. For example the Hau Nuva, it looks weird in bright colors, but the Black version for some odd reason looks really good, same with the brown version

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finally responding to this! that's a lotta neat opinions n whatnot, tbh it helps when i try to tackle these issues to be able to sort em all out so here i am with top-concern!

 

the kaukau nuva! which people are saying doesn't look much like it's predecessor. o:

 

i unfortunately, have to disagree and shall display the front-shot mages BS0! so helpfully kees stocked:

 

Kaukau_Nuva_Gali.png vs Kaukau_Gali.png

 

well first off, i can say that BS01 has a FAR too large kaukau-nuva image, but i digress.

 

 

main point is, as someone who owns both masks and has nothing but time, i spend a LOT of time comparing the Kaukau to it's nuva version and came to the conclusion: the kaukau nuva is indeed a kaukau but with smoothed out edges and no visor!

 

(sorry if this is kinda hasty and rambl-y it's 12:40 oops...)

 

Edit: also of note- the veins on the cheeks of the hau nuva line up with the slits on the hau, the crest on the pakari nuva's forhead and cheeks also represent the slits, and you're all honestly right about the akaku nuva, it is kinda terrible compared to the others. x:

Edited by Rahkshi Lalonde
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I never had a problem with the Nuva masks. It might be just because I was a kid when they were introduced and I absolutely loved everything that came from Bionicle with no critical thought, but I digress.

 

I chose Kakama Nuva as my favorite, but now that I think about it, Pakari Nuva is probably even better...

 

And while I chose Miru Nuva as my least favorite because of the strange mouth, I totally forgot how akward the Kaukau Nuva is. Especially the nostrils on it. To be honest, the Kaukau Nuva is the only Kanohi Nuva I ever found weird as a kid.

Edited by Toatapio Nuva

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I like all the masks. my favorites would have to be the Kakama Nuva, Hau Nuva, and Miru Nuva kanohi, Kakama Nuva being my favorite. Akaku is cool too, but it's organic feel makes it feel 'special' and 'different' (not sure if i am explaining it right). The Pakari Nuva and Kaukau Nuva are my least favorite of them all, but I till like them. Between the two I chose the Kaukau Nuva because it feels like a solid mesh between the Hau and Kaukau, and it has a pig nose ...or maybe it isn't a pig nose, but a cow nose! Kaukau, cow cow? Eh? Ehh?! Get it! No? Nothing? Really?! Whatever. Ithoughtitwasprettyfunny...

Edited by Sir Iaredios
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i like them but second wave of the nuva mask pohatu is the best the first wave is the hau


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I think they're all great, very unique from each other, though perhaps they strayed away from their original counterparts a bit too much (I'm looking at you Miru and Kakama! (NOTE: The Kakama Nuva is still cool in my option))


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I don't hate them. I like them because of their looks which evoke elemental aesthetics, such as the Pakari Nuva which feels rugged like a collective of dirt rocks, or the Hau Nuva which has a smooth and bumpy feeling like a crazy flow of lava. Though, for me, the biggest downer regarding them would be their size. I feel that they put the proportions off-balance a bit for the Toa Nuva due to how big they are compared to the heads of the Toa and their bodies. Still, I think they're good masks, but certainly not as great as other ones.

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I just think that the original Bionicle masks were so unique and iconic that anything that followed would be a little disappointing. 

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Only some... as to which ones, it's hard to pick a best and worst.

 

I like the Hau for seeming perhaps coolest for a mask worn on Tahu's face, and for looking probably the most like its original (maybe Akaku though). But in terms of MOCing potential... eh, not the best. For that I like Pohatu Nuva's mask, even though as "looks like Pohatu" it fails miserably. The brown helps.

 

Worst? I picked Miru, but it's really a tossup between that, Kaukau, and Pakari, but Pakari has reasonable MOCing potential, and Kaukau I haven't used in a MOC but I could see it working. Miru Nuva also looks too clearly like only a face, and it is so disappointing compared to the brilliant original Miru.

 

The Akaku I still don't know what to think about, though.

 

As for why Nuva masks seem worse... Well, to explain that, it's best to see this image from the G2 concept art (and this shows a problem I have with G2 as well)... We could have had masks that actually "coolified" the original shapes; we could have had something that made us go "MUST BUY!"... we could have had... this:

 

tahu_concept_art_cropped_6.png

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As for why Nuva masks seem worse... Well, to explain that, it's best to see this image from the G2 concept art (and this shows a problem I have with G2 as well)... We could have had masks that actually "coolified" the original shapes; we could have had something that made us go "MUST BUY!"... we could have had... this:

 

http://www.brickshelf.com/gallery/bonesiii/Bionicle/tahu_concept_art_cropped_6.png

I'm actually quite grateful we didn't have that. Not only does it barely look anything like the Toa we know and love, it barely even looks like a solid mask. It looks like disconnected bits of armor wrapped around an alien face.

 

In general I feel like the 2015 and 2016 masks are a good example of mask design done right. They take obvious cues from the masks that came before them (much more obvious than the old Nuva masks did, but again, that's something LEGO has gotten much better at as they've gotten more practice), but they still feel really coherent and solid and practical, not piecemeal and overdesigned.

Edited by Aanchir

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I think that in addition to the aesthetic issues many have already pointed out (most of them barely resembled the original masks and had a blobby organic texture that didn't match any other parts), there were other factors in play that made me dislike them.

 

From a story standpoint, the Kanohi Nuva were that much less essential than the masks that preceded them. The original Kanohi each had specific powers and each Toa had to collect all six to be able to use those powers. That was great, and it went out the window with the Kanohi Nuva. They started by replacing the gold masks the Toa had, so each Toa was back to one type of mask. They had others to collect and use, of course, but the fact that they could share mask powers with each other made that mostly irrelevant, because as long as the Toa were in a group they never had to change their own masks—and for the most part, they didn't.

 

If that weren't enough, the Toa Nuva were the ONLY characters who could canonically wear Kanohi Nuva. The original Kanohi were great for MOCing, not just because of their iconic simplicity, but also because they could be worn by Matoran, Rahi, and pretty much anything else you can imagine or build. The new 2016 masks do seem fairly specific to the Toa who wear them, which could be considered similar to the Kanohi Nuva in that respect. But at least in that case, the only masks they're trying to get you to buy are the ones in the basic Toa sets. Even back in the day I barely got any Kanohi Nuva packs at all, because as far as I was concerned there was no appeal to them whatsoever outside of the pipe dream of having a complete collection.


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Even if in the story, only the Toa Nuva could wear the Kanohi Nuva, we could at least make up our fanon and pretend they were the forms for masks with new powers. 


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Yeah, kinda like a robotic version of a Sangheili. Still, it really catches the eye, and the point is something like that would have been better than what we got.

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Yeah, kinda like a robotic version of a Sangheili. Still, it really catches the eye, and the point is something like that would have been better than what we got.

From a certain point of view, maybe. Maybe to you that screams out "must buy!"To me, it says "go away—the days of iconic simplicity in Bionicle are gone for good".

 

Granted, it is just a concept, and concept art in general tends to be rougher and less refined than final masks—that's why the final masks end up looking different from the concept art in the first place. But if that mask had been released as-is, it would have easily been WORSE than the original Kanohi Nuva. It looks less like the original Hau than the Hau Nuva, and I can't visualize it looking good with CCBS or with Lego in general.

Edited by Lyichir

Formerly Lyichir: Rachira of Influence

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tahu_concept_art_cropped_6.png

 

Lego designer: "Hey you here that Halo 5 is T-Rated now?"

Concept Artist: "Sweat, maybe we can take the license away from Megablocks now! I'm going to draw up a piece of concept art for a CCBS elite!"

Lego designer: "Awesome!" 

 

Concept Artist works on design...

Lego designer comes back: "Hey bad news, corporate still says no on the Halo thing."

Concept Artist: "Then what am I going to do with this?"

Lego designer: "I don't know; slap some red paint on it and we will shove it into the Bionicle concept art bin..."

 

To be honest, if Lego did produce a CCBS Elite, I would buy that up pretty quick... 


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I really didn't care about the mask designs on way or another when I was younger - I just voted yes because I don't have a mortal opposition to them. 

 

I really like the Kakama Nuva, but perhaps I was blindsided by the movie animation version of it. It just looked so cool. 

 

And my least favorite - the Hau Nuva for looking like lumpy spaghetti. 

 

 

We could have had masks that actually "coolified" the original shapes; we could have had something that made us go "MUST BUY!"... we could have had... this:

 

tahu_concept_art_cropped_6.png

Whew! Thank goodness we didn't!

 

O_O

 

I don't know about "must-buy" ism, but considering that I picked up the entire group of Toa for Bionicle's return, perhaps the designs that actually made it to market actually do inspire that in some people. 

 

Or maybe it's just all those trans-purple parts. :shrugs:

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tahu_concept_art_cropped_6.png

That does not count as a mask, who would approve that?


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I still like the Kanohi Nuva. It was a different direction for giving new masks, and after that they didnt really follow suit in creating new masks in those styles. I agree that some look really "veiny" and "stretched", but ones like the Pakari and Muri Nuva have solid designs to me. 

 

I guess I don't like the Kaukau nuva only because it had nose holes. 



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I also don't understand how anyone can call the masks: 

 

sleek and elegant

The Hau is a bulging mess of veins, the Kaukau looks less streamlined and suited for swimming than the original version, the Miru's lost its aerodynamic shape, the Kakama is no longer small and compact, it has become this unwieldy mask that would weigh down the user, the Pakari is the exact opposite of elegant or sleek & the Akaku is the only Nuva mask that gets close to the meanings of the two words. 

 

On another note, has anyone criticized or seen dislike of the Toa Metru's kanohi for not resembling the noble versions? 

There are these things called opinions. Everyone has a different one. If you don't understand how someone sees something, that's because your perspective is different from theirs. 

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bZpOwEr

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Granted, it is just a concept, and concept art in general tends to be rougher and less refined than final masks

Exactly.

 

And of course, you're correct that taste will always play a role -- that's actually my point. Usually the things most liked will be most strongly disliked by others, as that example shows. A bold design like that will get some of us to want to buy it over anything else, and others to react as predictably shown in the replies, heh. By contrast, "safer" designs tend to just bore most people, and that's the problem with the Nuva masks.

 

When you set it up as an upgrade of the heroes who had such brilliant designs originally, you're hoping for bolder designs -- while one of them might not be to your taste, others probably will. We were set up to expect bold improvements of the original, and in that situation, safe and bland (although not all of them were that bad) was hard to gloss over.

 

G2 does actually have another great example that went into the final -- Lewa's mask. It's clearly different from the original Miru, but could have worked well as a Nuva design.

 

Obviously, the designers in 2002 wouldn't likely have thought of those designs, but it still helps see the contrast.

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My problem with the Nuva masks isn't that they're "safe and bland", but the opposite.  They're so completely off-the-wall out there that they don't match any other masks.  They have too much going on compared to their previous versions.  They're the least "safe" masks I can think of, besides maybe the Inika masks.

 

By contrast, I'd say the original twelve Kanohi had some of the "safest" designs of the entire run, but the simplicity worked for the setting and the designs are still influencing BIONICLE to this day.

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