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Would Bionicle have lasted longer if it was a continuation?

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Thinking back to when the original Bionicle got discontinued in 2010-2011, there was a lot of debate about how Bionicle should be if it was brought back, whether it should be a continuation of what we knew, or if it should be hard-rebooted. Some argued a continuation to keep the old fans, while others argued a hard reboot because the original was too complex. In the end we got a hard reboot, and it only lasted two years.

 

The question I have is, do you think Bionicle would've lasted beyond 2016 if the decision was made to make it a continuation or soft reboot on Spherus Magna instead of the hard reboot we got?

 

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People still would have hated it for all the same reasons. The system, the story, everything. They'd also find new reasons to complain, like that it's a disgrace to the original portion of the story and it should have never happened.

 

That's how it is here. If it's not from 2001 it's not worth your time.

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Doesn't matter, G2's world-building was nonexistent enough that it might as well have been a continuation if it weren't for altered "backstories" to the Toa and the setting.

Edited by Toa of Gallifrey
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I would probably have to say that it wouldn't. While having it be a reboot may lose some of the hardcore fans, it also opens up the theme to newcomers of the line, and just in general makes it more accessable to both. Plus, even if it was a continuation, that doesn't necessarily lead to a better story quality.

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No, a hard reboot was probably the best choice (although a soft reboot taking place so far in the future of G1 that almost nothing of G1 remained could have also worked)

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Absolutely, positively, 100% no.
 
G1 had a bloated storyline. While you can't look to that as the reason it got axed, let's be honest—it was pretty big.  2009 was an attempt at a soft rebooting that ended up making the story way too complex. Kids from 2002 were now getting older and the brand just wasn't bringing in enough cash because the younger generation couldn't get into the story.  Story does drive sales in that a bad story can only drive them down, and for a seven-year-old, catching up on a story that's been going on since before you were even alive isn't going to likely get you more interested.
 
At best, a continuation would have done nothing to affect sales.  It would have gotten older G1 fans such as myself involved a little bit more, but there's no guarantee of that. I drifted away from the serials—the last gasps of the G1 story—once the sets ceased production, and continuing that trainwreck wouldn't have made many of my generation happy.

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Depends completely on execution. Done poorly, it could have been worse than G2 for not only not being interesting but also having a confusing story with too much backstory. I'll say that I think it would've been riskier, but much more rewarding if they could make it work. I don't blame LEGO at all though for just making it a hard reboot, much safer and just as much room for success, if not more.

 

As to financially, who really knows. Anyone that tells you a flat yes or no is kidding themselves because we don't even know exactly why G2 as it is did poorly. A continuation could've failed for all the same reasons or completely different ones based on its own nature. Again, a lot of it is based on execution.

 

This whole discussion is based on heavy theoreticals. There really is no knowing what could've been. Final answer? Maybe, maybe not. Whatever it would've been, it's not what we got and who knows if it would've changed the situation we've got now.

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Nope. There's too many plotlines to follow and wrap up in the old story that the whole thing is going to be a giant, clunky mess once it's all (somehow) resolved. It's better to start on a new, clean sheet so you have more freedom to build up on that theme.

 

A continuation only brings in the older, "hardcore" fans but a reboot like this brings in a new audience.

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No, it would have lasted longer if they actually put some more effort into it than they did. The story felt way too 2-dimensional the whole time, and the sets were either too basic (2015) or terrible-looking (2016). 

 

I'm not saying they didn't put any effort into it, because they did. But looking at the overall scheme of things, they didn't do all they could have. I'm not asking for 100% effort, but they should strive to aim for 75% at the very least. What we got felt like 60%, and so it fell short of everything it could have been.


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Maybe if Bionicle's relaunch was catered towards older audiences with premium sets and limited availability. LEGO may have seen the potential of the product and kept it afloat. That's the only way a continuation could have worked in my opinion.

 

That's not the approach they took and its understandable. I guess constraction sets aren't as popular as they used to be. Never really caught on with kids I guess.

 

If they decide to do a G3 in the future, I wonder how they would approach it?

 

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I was gonna describe where Bionicle left off to see how that could be worked off and explain why that would be awful, but i couldn't even remember where all the characters were at so i gave up.

 

 

(and before it is said, even if it is a far future continuation, you gotta make mentions to keep the continuation stuff, and that still opens the rabbit-hole-space-vortex that is having to explain how two giant robots fighting on a shattered world is the end result of a tribal island cultures attempts to save their dying deity from their shadow-demon, who is in reality a megalomaniac vampire scientist/overseer, and that is just its own can of worms tbh.

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A continuation would have been horrible.

 

I hope that in the future, G1 does get a continuation and I hope that continuation stinks.

 

Why? Are you spiteful towards other fans who think a continuation could genuinely have promise, or have you simply decided you hate Bionicle now?

 

I don't understand the hate towards the idea of any sort of continuation. It's less than ideal and much harder to pull off, but if it happens and it works what do you have to lose? Your honor? Your reputation?

 

And you speak like you know for absolute sure, when what's being discussed is barely even a simple concept, not an actual fully developed theme that we've already seen glimpses of and already promises the worst that would come of a continuation. It's just an idea, and unless you're planning a LEGO Nazis line the idea probably isn't inherently awful.

 

No matter how I put your perspective, it makes no sense. On one hand you might see everyone who doesn't hate the idea as ignorant fan boys, which in itself is a very limited perspective, or on the other hand you simply think the idea itself doesn't have any promise whatsoever, which is completely short sighted and unwilling to welcome anything of the sort regardless of its quality.

 

It's not like it's happening, but it seems you've already made up your mind about it before it's even happened, which it hasn't and it likely won't. I personally don't think we'll see one and I'd much rather Bionicle gets another stab at a reboot but what you're saying genuinely makes no sense to me and just sounds like you're angrily ready to hate. Which considering the state of Bionicle, also sounds silly as hoping for it to fail is just wishing more hardship on a community that you are a part of. Bionicle is Bionicle, no matter how much you hate it, it's still worth having around.

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I was one of the people who thought a hard reboot was the best course of action. And I still do.

 

Think of it this way... Star Wars is a huge franchise that has many fans spanning generations. However, one thing that sets it apart from Bionicle is how available the main media is. The movies are always there, whether they're on TV, VHS, DVD, Blu-Ray, etc to be shared with many future generations of fans. That's how I got into it in the first place. If not for them being preserved on VHS, it would've been hard for me to get into them. And with me owning them on DVD and Blu-Ray, I can share them with friends, family, and future generations.

 

Bionicle does not exactly have that. All the comics, movies, games, graphic novels, all that cool stuff? It's either out of print or super hard to find. I can't even find any of the G2 books or graphic novels these days, and now it might become harder for me with the line's cancellation. But looking at the story of G1, there's a lot to take in and a lot to swallow. I mean, some of the kids in the target demographic were probably born close to when the line ended or were to young to remember anything. And even then, they'd have to play catch-up with whatever they did miss out on, and it's like it's tough luck on them for getting into the story later on for whatever reason or another and now they need to hunt down these books, comics, etc. that were made a long time ago (and in some cases, possibly before they were born) that aren't easy to come by. If Lego were to continuously pump out the books and media so fans could keep up and get into the story even in this day and age, then I would be all for continuing the G1 story, especially with how unfinished it is.

 

But the books have been out of print for years. The comics are no longer a thing. The old graphic novels are also out of print. And the last time I saw a Bionicle movie on store shelves was Web of Shadows in a Kmart discount bin 5 years ago. And maybe some people either aren't aware of all this story media or they are discouraged by the means of how to obtain this media, like paying prices on eBay or the lack of availability. Aside from sites like the BS01 wiki, you don't have too many other options of viewing or reading this stuff. But with Star Wars and even Transformers G1, they're putting the movies and TV series on DVD every so often so fans who have always wanted to get into it and experience it for themselves very well can and they don't have to be discouraged by any sort of difficulties. I wasn't alive in the 1970s and 1980s but thanks to things like this, I can experience these bits and pieces of them thanks to the companies putting out the movies like this.

 

So going back to "it's a whole lot to swallow," you have the issue of "the G1 story is too complex and complicated" as well. Not everyone feels that way, but a lot of people did. So in addition to having to track down all this out of print media, new fans also have a whale of a story to digest in order to understand what's currently going on in the storyline. If availability and accessibility of the story media was not a problem, then maybe the task at hand would be much easier. Need to read up on the storyline of 2001-2003? No problem. You'd have the CA Hapka- Greg Farshtey books there as well as the Mask of Light movie to tell you what went on in those years. But getting all that might not be a simple task as it would be going into Kmart and picking up the Blu-Ray copies of the original Star Wars trilogy.

 

Another way to look at it is with Transformers and how they handled it. G1 and G2 of their franchises were connected to one another. Although, G2 is not remembered as fondly as G1 based on the loud color schemes of the various repaints of toys, various gimmicks, lack of media and coherent storyline (well, I'm still confused by it), and the "in your face" attitude of the commercials with some of the most hilariously bad raps you'd ever heard. That only lasted 1992-1995 compared to the 1984-1988/9 that the G1 line went on for, and that had the G1 Marvel Comics, the Sunbow Cartoon, various means of comics and Japanese Manga, and it's still being continued to this day if you consider the reinvention Dreamwave and IDW did with the characters. Likewise, the Regeneration One comics that also bring back the old Marvel Comic characters into the spotlight from where they were last left. G2 Transformers didn't seem to sell well from what I understand, compared to G1. But then in 1996 came Beast Wars, a reinvention of the Transformers brand that brought it back into popularity and is one that I'm more familiar with as I literally grew up with it. While it had its own set of haters and NEIGH-sayers (TRUKK NOT MUNKY!!!), kids loved it. You had robots that turned into animals, which changed the formula of vehicles and objects, as well as the Mainframe series noted for its story telling and character development. Even today, while it hasn't aged well, I know fans that still regard it as one of the best Transformers stories made, and with Shout! Factory putting Transformers stuff on DVD, kids of today can very well get into it, as well as the adults who were the kids who enjoyed it in its hey day. And all the while, Beast Wars was a somewhat sequel (and prequel) to the G1 story, and it was something the older fans of G1 could get into, but then kids didn't have to get into the old G1 if they weren't born back then, thus weren't totally punished for it. Granted, I did get into G1 once my cousin introduced me to some of the episodes on VHS, so it helped make Beast Wars make a little more sense.

 

Essentially, what I'm saying in all this is there is a way to go about doing a reboot. You can have a continuation of the series, but make sure the older media is at least still available for fans who weren't around back then so they don't feel punished for it. You can have a soft reboot that is sort of a continuation but doesn't totally punish newer fans. Or a hardcore reboot that has nothing to do with the old story and creates a new one with some familiar characters or possibly whole new ones. Bionicle G2 embarked on creating a hardcore reboot with new elements and challenging some of the old Bionicle mythos we knew and grew up with. Did it work? I would like to think so, but I guess sales didn't reflect that. Why? I have no idea. Perhaps the story did not interest younger fans as Lego hoped it would. 

 

However if there is a silver lining in this, it shows they know there is a demand for the line. They tried it out, but sadly it didn't work. But they know there is an interest in it among older fans. So maybe someday we will have a Beast Wars of Bionicle that manages to reinvent the line and capture the hearts and imaginations of both new younger fans and older fans who fondly remember the times of days past. Hasbro didn't give up back then, and I hope that neither will Lego.

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Honestly, what are we talking about here?

 

Look at Avatar: The Last Airbender and Avatar: The Legend of Korra. Both of them are great shows! However, Korra struggled in the beginning 2 seasons...because it relied too much on the previous show (Airbender). When she lost connection to all the past lives and essentially became a new beginning and the show ventured off to new ideas in the same world as the previous show, that's when it became gold. Were seasons 1 and 2 bad? Absolutely not, but were they great? Not as good as what the expectation was. Seasons 3 and 4 took the same world and went to new places, developed new ideas and added tastefully to the original storyline without relying on it.

 

Why am I referencing these shows?

 

Because that's the only way G2 could've worked if it wasn't a reboot. The writers and creators would need to carefully find a connection point in the plot and create new characters that did something that was familiar enough to please the old fans that still cared and adventurous enough to A: not feel dated and B: still be marketable and profitable to a new group of fans.

 

Gen 2 played it safe...maybe a little too safe for its own good. I understand that G2 is a different entity than the original, but if we're being honest, storyline wise, it didn't really do anything too outside the original gen. The writers chose to reboot the original characters and keep a lot of the same characteristics while adding a few new and such. They did a great job staying true to what G1 was all about while making a new storyline in a new universe with classic characters...and that lasted 4 waves...

 

If they would've created a new team of toa and explored ways to expand the Gen 1 story while not relying too much on the original gen, then we could've potentially gotten something tasteful and special. However, this is all easier said than done. Would it have lasted longer? There's so many factors that we need to look at that I don't have the time, nor patience to do.

 

Hope this is helpful/relevant


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No.

 

G1 ended up with a really nasty case of continuity lockout that made it totally inaccessible to new fans, so there's not much point in picking that up again without some major changes.

 

But what frustrates me is that it wasn't just the story content that locked people out, but the choices of media and format becoming less and less easy for the casual fan to come across. Worse, is that for G2, Lego didn't seem to learn much from the best bits of G1 in terms of multimedia storytelling and having lots of content accessible online for free.

 

I'm all for having a Voltron-style remake next time that keeps the same concept of the characters and plot, but makes a few tweaks to keep it interesting, and has a decent enough budget and timeframe for good storytelling to happen. That's sorta what they were going for here, but the restrictions really hampered it.

 

One of those "good idea, poor execution" kinda situations.


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The answer to this one is PROBABLY no. I suspect that the watered-down story was meant to appeal to children, and since the Bionicle team likely (again, we're not sure of this, could be the other way around) had to make the case to the higher-ups that their story would sell to kids, they had to do a reboot as the best way to make that case. 

 

A continuation would have a weaker case to appeal to the higher-ups and grimmer marketing projections. And since they were the ones that canceled it, I seriously doubt the whole thing.

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The answer to this one is PROBABLY no. I suspect that the watered-down story was meant to appeal to children, and since the Bionicle team likely (again, we're not sure of this, could be the other way around) had to make the case to the higher-ups that their story would sell to kids, they had to do a reboot as the best way to make that case.

 

A continuation would have a weaker case to appeal to the higher-ups and grimmer marketing projections. And since they were the ones that canceled it, I seriously doubt the whole thing.

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Nope. Continuation wouldn't have made much sense for new fans to get into.



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Honestly, I don't think so. Putting someone up to speed with the stroy would be a nightmare. Maybe if they decanoniza anything after Mata Nui goes back to the mask of life, then have the MU and Spherus Magna "good guys" have a war with the "bad guys" because they stole the Ignika and want to revive Makuta. Make references to G1 here and there, but keep it focused to trying to stop the bad guys while in the background a civil war is brewing between the organics and biomechanicals.

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No.  The evolution of the story would have been too complex for newbs to grasp.  :???:10+ years of storyline to absorb.  ​


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I don't know that there's room for a "continuation" in the literal sense (for now, anyways). I do think there could be room for a new story arc within the G1 universe (or G2, if they felt like it).

 

Mostly it's a matter of balancing the need to respect prior canon and using as little of it as possible to make the connection (given a newbie audience). The EZ-mode approach is to simply jump many years into the future and reference prior events as legend. More interesting to me is the concept of jumping into the past.

 

Consider an origin story of the early days of Mata Nui (Tren Krom, etc.). You can still operate with a blank slate, but can gradually introduce concepts that we know in the broader lore (the origins of Kanohi, Rahi, etc.).

 

Old fans get to have the "Aha!" moment whenever it bridges a gap, and new fans use those same bridges to realize that there's a whole lot more depth if they want to explore it.


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I feel, if executed right, bionicle could have continued the original story line, an even have had re-imagine stories with the mask of dimension travel. As long as everything operated within the original rules of the universe we all know and love. It's been shown before, and can still continue. Stories that have thrived for long time. Doctor Who, Star wars, star trek, just to name a few that have servived over the years. The question is execution in both story and merchandise. If both can keep up, the customers will flock to it, and the fandom can and will grow.

To me, if we got the original writer back, bionicle could return to it's glory days. However, the chance of that happening is slim to none. At the most, if we can find someone who can continue the story, with a expansive knowledge of the bionicle universe, and respect to the lore, the story can continue. Doing so can satisfy the old fans, and could draw in new fans, an let themselves find the history. Again, you have to execute the story so it's fun for hard core fans, but don't alienate the new fans. If that can be done, and if the sales department do a excellent job, everything will fall into place!

 

Or, that is my take on all this....

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