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Trigo Nui

Bionicle's Supposed "Twenty-Year Tenure"

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I recently decided that it would be good for me to jump back into Bionicle as a serious hobby, so I'm starting with the basics -- that is, reviewing the Wikipedia article. :P One thing stood out to me that I'm wondering about. 

Throughout its history, the Wikipedia page has made reference to Bionicle being planned to last 20 years. The earliest reference to this plan popped up in an anonymous edit on 09:13, 28 December 2014, which states that, "Even though both themes [Slizers/Throwbots and RoboRiders] were short-lived, they proved to be popular, prompting Lego to create a new theme with an original storyline as a product staple to last at least twenty years." Variations on this statement appear under the "Concept" subheading until Wikipedia user Bigwhofan added the following to the "Generation 1" subheading: "A total of seven different story arcs were originally planned to be carried out over Bionicle's planned-twenty year tenure. Only three were ever completed, while the fourth was altered to end prematurely after the announcement of the theme's cancellation" (23:32, 27 September 2016). This statement was minimally altered until removal on 16:45, 23 March 2020, with the only remaining reference to this 20-year plan being in its current form under the intro. 

The most frustrating thing about all of this is that there is no reference. Have LEGO or Greg indicated an original plan for Bionicle to last two decades? If so, has there been any information on what the full seven arcs would have been like? 

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I believe the "7 Books of BIONICLE" were mostly in Bob Thompson's head, and everyone else only knew what was coming up next. Because of that, we don't know a lot about those original long-term plans.

However, Bob Thompson will be appearing on the Bionicle Day stream on the Beaverhouse Twitch channel and answering questions (though the cutoff for questions has already passed), so hopefully we'll finally get some insight into the ideas that he never shared.

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6 hours ago, Trigo Nui said:

I recently decided that it would be good for me to jump back into Bionicle as a serious hobby, so I'm starting with the basics -- that is, reviewing the Wikipedia article. :P One thing stood out to me that I'm wondering about. 

Throughout its history, the Wikipedia page has made reference to Bionicle being planned to last 20 years. The earliest reference to this plan popped up in an anonymous edit on 09:13, 28 December 2014, which states that, "Even though both themes [Slizers/Throwbots and RoboRiders] were short-lived, they proved to be popular, prompting Lego to create a new theme with an original storyline as a product staple to last at least twenty years." Variations on this statement appear under the "Concept" subheading until Wikipedia user Bigwhofan added the following to the "Generation 1" subheading: "A total of seven different story arcs were originally planned to be carried out over Bionicle's planned-twenty year tenure. Only three were ever completed, while the fourth was altered to end prematurely after the announcement of the theme's cancellation" (23:32, 27 September 2016). This statement was minimally altered until removal on 16:45, 23 March 2020, with the only remaining reference to this 20-year plan being in its current form under the intro. 

The most frustrating thing about all of this is that there is no reference. Have LEGO or Greg indicated an original plan for Bionicle to last two decades? If so, has there been any information on what the full seven arcs would have been like? 

Its honestly considered a faux-paux on Wikipedia to make a claim like that without a reference. Again, hopefully the Bionicle Day events next month give us a more solid piece of information to clarify that since as it stands, that feels like a very unverified claim. 

Now I have heard the whole 7 Books of Bionicle thing before... so again hopefully Bob is willing to share some stuff on it. 


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i never knew about that!

it's probably just a mistake on the part of wikipedia, but it's still cool and mysterious. 

this brings up lots up of interesting questions...


 

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21 hours ago, TuragaNuva said:

I believe the "7 Books of BIONICLE" were mostly in Bob Thompson's head, and everyone else only knew what was coming up next. Because of that, we don't know a lot about those original long-term plans.

However, Bob Thompson will be appearing on the Bionicle Day stream on the Beaverhouse Twitch channel and answering questions (though the cutoff for questions has already passed), so hopefully we'll finally get some insight into the ideas that he never shared.

It appears based on promotional materials for the event that the 7 books topic will be addressed in the Bionicle Founders panel. 


At times like this he wonders if the Great Beings are truly brilliant beyond imagining, or hopelessly mad. Or if there's even any difference between the two..."

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Wow this is quite an interesting development, I was unaware of this forgotten story material. Will definitely be looking forward to the panel! 

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Getting some insight into the 7 books would be incredible for sure!


:m: :a: :x:    :n: :u: :i:

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A book I read called “ The real toy story” ( published before Bionicle G1’s end) also alluded to the story team allegedly having 20-30 years worth of story sketched out, so I’d say that lends some weight to it. At the very least, the rumour has been around a long time. 


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7 hours ago, Alyska said:

A book I read called “ The real toy story” ( published before Bionicle G1’s end) also alluded to the story team allegedly having 20-30 years worth of story sketched out, so I’d say that lends some weight to it. At the very least, the rumour has been around a long time. 

Are you sure that was the book? It was published in 2014 -- after G1 -- and doesn't mention anything about Bionicle's story plans. In fact, the two references to Bionicle are both wrong -- first that it launched in 2002 and second that it started as an online animated video series and then expanded into the realm of toys. If that was the book, I get the sense it's not a terribly reliable source. 


At times like this he wonders if the Great Beings are truly brilliant beyond imagining, or hopelessly mad. Or if there's even any difference between the two..."

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17 hours ago, Trigo Nui said:

Are you sure that was the book? It was published in 2014 -- after G1 -- and doesn't mention anything about Bionicle's story plans. In fact, the two references to Bionicle are both wrong -- first that it launched in 2002 and second that it started as an online animated video series and then expanded into the realm of toys. If that was the book, I get the sense it's not a terribly reliable source. 

https://books.google.com.au/books/about/The_Real_Toy_Story.html?id=H9kSRbYITlYC&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button&newbks=1&newbks_redir=1&redir_esc=y

This one here, published in 2007. That said, it has been over a decade since I read it, so I could be misremembering something I read elsewhere as being from that book. Apologies if that’s the case. I no longer have the book so unfortunately I can’t check.


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On 7/23/2021 at 6:52 AM, Alyska said:

https://books.google.com.au/books/about/The_Real_Toy_Story.html?id=H9kSRbYITlYC&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button&newbks=1&newbks_redir=1&redir_esc=y

This one here, published in 2007. That said, it has been over a decade since I read it, so I could be misremembering something I read elsewhere as being from that book. Apologies if that’s the case. I no longer have the book so unfortunately I can’t check.

Ahhhh, you're right. It's likely the edition I looked at was published in 2014. I did a search for "Bionicle" in a PDF copy of the book, which unfortunately only yielded the instances I mentioned above. 

I'm excited to see what Bob has to say about this topic in a few weeks. 


At times like this he wonders if the Great Beings are truly brilliant beyond imagining, or hopelessly mad. Or if there's even any difference between the two..."

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