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Astris Janus

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Posts posted by Astris Janus

  1. After so long since my last mask suggestion post, I just thought of a new one.


    Mask of Maintanance


    Allows the user's body to become a living toolbox. While in use, the mask can function as a sort of automated pit crew AI that can repair the mechanical parts of the user/object/others, upgrade preexisting parts, or can replace organic parts with mechanical parts.


    I think this description is not complete, so I'll probably update this post at a later time.




    I like this a lot  :D 


    The way I imagine it is that (with the great version at least) the mask is always on at a low level, maintaining the user's armour and gear. They can then focus the mask's power to repair damaged items or upgrade items, probably in about half the time it would take to do it normally? Replacing organic parts seems to fit in, though one of its limitations should be being unable to repair damage to organics. The mask might also need material to work with so it can repair things?


    Anyway, really like this idea, just think it could use some refinement  ^_^ 


    Astris Janus

  2. So, something I've been working on for a while now....


    So, here :P


    A friend of mine commissioned this. Turned out to be much more time consuming than I imagined (man Bohrok are a pain to draw :P ). Background is basic as it gets but oh well


    C&C appreciated, thanks ^_^


    Astris Janus

    • Upvote 3



    It's an interesting conundrum. Magic is elegant because it has just five colors; the eight major elements of Bionicle may get messy. Maybe Shadow and Light could work differently from the other elements somehow?


    Interesting how you bring that up. I was only going for adding a sixth colour and redistributing stuff around, but you make a point...


    Like I've said before, trying to bend the mechanics of the game to fit the flavour isn't the option I see myself going with. It just becomes really messy when you get down to it. Really I would be more interested in trying to find overlaps in card mechanics and Bionicle flavour and making that work instead ^_^


    Astris Janus


    There was an article on the MtG site a while back about how they were gonna add a sixth color to magic for Future Sight or one of those sets, but it was canceled right before they were gonna do it. They went into detail into how it was going to work, so if you can find that article it could help make adapting in a sixth color a lot easier :)



    I have read that article (the Colour Purple :P ) and that was part of the reason I suggested adding to and changing the colour pie :) It does make for some distinct options if we were to head down that path, however I wouldn't want to push it past six colours-- more colours means more complexity-- which limits us to basically the six main elements (not too bad actually)


    I guess lands would be Wahi or Metru (Koros could be special lands) and the Light land Kini-Nui and Shadow land Mangaia could allow you to use your other lands to produce Light or Shadow mana energy?


    Depending on how how we were to do it, yes that would the case. I mean, if we were to add extra colours then yes, but if we just stick to normal Magic rules we might have a harder time. I'd recommend making them legendary lands and giving them an ability related to their flavour in addition to producing mana


    Curious. How would you distribute this? Will it be printout or will you be programming it as a game/using LackeyCCG?


    I hadn't thought about that actually. If I were to seriously distribute it, a printout would probably easiest way to go about it, though it might be quite large...

    With other custom sets, we have thought about printing out proxies to place in front of cards, and even printing directly onto cards. Those options could be made available easily


    Astris Janus

  4. It's an interesting conundrum. Magic is elegant because it has just five colors; the eight major elements of Bionicle may get messy. Maybe Shadow and Light could work differently from the other elements somehow?


    Interesting how you bring that up. I was only going for adding a sixth colour and redistributing stuff around, but you make a point...


    Like I've said before, trying to bend the mechanics of the game to fit the flavour isn't the option I see myself going with. It just becomes really messy when you get down to it. Really I would be more interested in trying to find overlaps in card mechanics and Bionicle flavour and making that work instead ^_^


    Astris Janus

  5. Thanks. In regards to the shape and power relation, I'm certain it was established in main canon that shape matters little, it's only a memory/recognizing standard. Glad to hear it extends to here. In regards to giving people characters, am I allowed dictate, as the creator of the character MOC, their personality and elemental predilections?


    If you are putting up a character and allowing anyone to use it within their EM stories, then yeah you can dictate how that character is personality wise and elementally. If people want to use your character they will, and if they don't like this or that about it they can always make new characters inspired by yours (preferably giving you some credit either way) :)


    If, however, you are collaborating with someone by making a character to use in their story... well, that's entirely between you and them really :)


    Astris Janus

  6. You may have covered this, so forgive me, but 1) do Toa/Matoran live on Promathus? 2) I can't write Bio fanfictions very well, so would I be allowed to make a MOC for someone to put into their writing? 3) related to 2, can the established masks be considered to be carved into established shapes (shapes of actual made masks)?


    I think I can cover this:


    1) Yes, Toa and Matoran live on Promathus. I'm pretty sure they're on every world actually. The only world specific species I can think of are the Tyrants.


    2) Pretty sure this is fine. Creating characters and saying people are free to use them for their own writings is basically offering EM freeware. As long as you're cool with it, this should be fine :)


    3) Not entirely sure what you mean here. If you mean "do masks from the original Bionicle cannon have the same shape as they normally do?" then yes, they do. If you mean "can masks that we have established for the EM come the shapes of actual masks in the real world?" then yes, they can. I'm pretty sure (and feel free to correct me if I'm wrong) that the actual shape of the mask doesn't have to relate to the power it contains, they just generally do to make them easily identifiable for the user. One of my EM characters owns quite a few different masks, and all of them are shaped like Kakamas with sharpened edges :P


    Hope this helped ^_^


    Astris Janus

  7. Well, I like this idea. So where would the design be starting from?


    The first thing to do for any Magic set is to create a design skeleton; a rough skeleton showing what cards are needed in the set. It is a very, very rough idea, and can be fluid when necessary, but gives you a basic structure for your set.

    So with the design skeleton, you start with the commons first, as they are what the majority of players will be interacting with and are quite often the hardest (well, perhaps second hardest, after uncommon) rarity to design for.


    Mark Rosewater (Head Designer for M:tG) has an excellent series of articles he posts annually about designing sets (particularly aimed at helping others design their own custom sets) that is worth a read. Link to the latest one here which in turn has the links to all the previous ones (strongly recommend giving them a read if you want to help out with this :) )


    I'd go with the first one, no need to change rules, which would put a less less effort into the hands of people who are new to it and making it easily accessible to folks who wanna play with their non-Bionicle friends. New mechanics are invented all the time to match the themes of sets, but I guess renaming them would work just fine as well. I think that Magic has sooo many mechanics and abilities and stuff that if you looked through them all (There's like around a hundred last tiem I counted), you could easily pick and choose a couple to fit any theme and atmosphere. The basing blocks off years is a neat idea which I like, 'cause I can totally see the Mata Nui stuff as like, Kamigawa or something, and then Metru Nui is definitely like Mirrodin or Ravnica, with all the technology and the metropolis and all, and basically the different locations in Bionicle are definitely unique enough to be their own sets and there are a lot of characters that can definitely be Planeswalkers. Now that I think about it, besides planeswalking itself, Bionicle and the worlds of MtG have a lot in common :D


    Only thing I wanna contribute at this time is to remind ya that, as far as I remember, the card designs are gonna change with M15 so you should look up the new style and incorporate it into your Bionicle cards, 'cause it would be nice to have them match what's gonna be the new norm and also I think the new frames looks great ^^


    229fjk2sdalkfeatwk01_en_card_wastenot.jp aiwesdfkw9242featwk01_en_card_walloffire


    The main differences on it are a new font called "Beleren" which is still very similar to their old font so it's fine to use the old one too, a smaller black border meaning more room on the card itself, and room for both collector info and space to credit the card's designer, which I think would be great for fan projects like this!


    I would love to help work on this, it sounds like fun and I looove the whole design process, Making Magic is my favorite segment on their website :) I'm really great with graphic design and photo manipulation and drawing programs and stuff so the look of cards is also something I can help out with when it gets to that stage after flavor and balancing and stuff.


    Oh my Mata Nui, there are sooo many mechanics to choose from! :D Like I said before, I'm also designing a more customary Magic set with some of my friends at the moment, so yeah I've trawled through all the keywords there :P I don't think we'd need to rename any of them (aside from things like Bushido, which has been stated as unlikely to return unless it gets a name change) unless it feels better flavourfully.New mechanics, however... New mechanics can be tough. I know from experience. It's always good to try and incorporate something new mechanically within a set and that's something I'll be striving to achieve here too ^_^


    I most definitely agree with you, locations in the Bionicle universe are most certainly diverse enough to constitute their own sets :D They are very similar, except for the planeswalking (well... anyone with a Kanohi Olmak... and Takanuva... :P ). I'm actually rather hesitant to put planeswalkers in, because of their strong ties to Magic flavour and their seeming lack of counterparts in Bionicle. Still something I find myself debating...


    And yes, I'm aware of the new designs for M15 (really looking forward to it XD). With the other sets I've been making, I've relied on the Magic Set Editor for actually producing the final cards. It produces a very good final product and I'm just hoping they update it for the new M15 boarders and font :)


    I might add, MaRo is my favourite writer for M;tG and I absolutely love Making Magic :D It'll be good to have you on board ^_^


    From what I understand, option 1 is the best. Changing rules would be confusing and difficult.


    Although option 3 will give a bigger leeway to mix and mATch characters and settings as the creators see fit. So it's a choice between staying to a faithful storyline or allowing the setting to diverge as the creators see fit to.


    I would not want to touch Option 2 with a ten-foot pole, not yet anyway. I put it up to because all options should be considered, and if someone can think of a simple enough way to make it work then I'll be interested to see it. :D


    I'm very torn between Options 1 and 3. On one hand, I love the idea of trying to go through the Bionicle storyline with Magic, faithfully representing the characters and source material, but on the other I love creating new worlds and characters, taking existing ideas and giving them a twist, and the idea of a sprawling, biomechanical multiverse just makes me so excited. XD


    The problems I'm finding with Option 1 are trying to fit characters to colour philosophies and magic associations. If I were to simply base the Toa Mata's colour identities on elemental power alone, I could probably sum it up in Red and Blue (red dealing with fire and rock, and blue dealing with water, ice and wind. Earth could be either red or green depending on interpretation). But colour identity is so much more than that; colour determines a character's beliefs, goals, personality quirks, driving instincts and so much more, and it can be quite difficult to fit both their powers and attitudes to the right colour or set of colours.


    This is part of the reason I suggested Option 3. Without taking away any of the already established rules and structure of the Bionicle universe, we could have a lot more freedom with a relatively blank slate, giving us room to create characters who are distinctly Bionicle, but with Magic philosophies intertwined with them.


    I'm not saying that Option 1 is not viable, just that it may be more difficult to execute while trying to stay faithful to the universe. That in itself may not be a downside either. As Mark Rosewater always says, "Restrictions breed creativity." :)


    Of course, we could to both, alternating between the two as we go along. Could give us some refreshing changes of pace :P I'm not sure yet. Hence why I asked :P


    Astris Janus

    • Upvote 1

  8. This is a pretty good idea, but I think the rules of this forum is that you have to present something more than just an idea. A proof of concept if you will... At least that's how I think it works. Mind you, I could be wrong.


    Hmm, I haven't seen anything in the rules, however I'll run it by a moderator to check :3


    Astris Janus


    EDIT: Just rechecked the rules and yeah, this probably falls under the "no preview topics" rule. I'll have a mod move it :)

  9. You want to know what four of my biggest passions are?



    Magic: the Gathering

    Creating things


    Now, lots of people have tried their hand at Bionicle anime (myself included), however, after a bit of searching I've found only a few attempts at Bionicle themed Magic cards. I wanted to push this further. I wanted to do whole sets, blocks and expansions for Bionicle styled Magic the Gathering. Mata Nui knows I've read all the articles and materials for creating Magic sets and I'm in the process of making one for just standard Magic. I wanted to apply it to Bionicle.


    For a while now I've been thinking about how to represent Bionicle in Magic: the Gathering (hereafter referred to as MtG) and it's been difficult; the elements and their associations (which are a core part Bionicle) don't quite mesh with the philosophies and associations of the Colour Pie (the core of MtG). I came to the conclusion that I needed help if I wanted to make this set. Unfortunately, the vast majority of my friends, while very into MtG, aren't into Bionicle. And my friends who are interested in Bionicle aren't interested in Magic (yet :devil: ).


    So, I thought I'd pose the idea to BZPower. I want to start a project called Magic: the Unity. Bionicle fused with MtG to create cohesive and playable Magic: the Gathering sets. And I want to see if any one would be interested in helping me with this project :D


    Because of the slight incompatibilities between the elements and colour pie, I've come up with several approaches to doing this:

    1. Bionicle Through the Lens of Magic: that is, creating cards that are fitted to the structure of M:tG. The storyline would be the Bionicle Saga, with each year as a block of three sets.
    2. Magic Through the Lens of Bionicle: similar to the above, however, we stay more truthful to the flavour of Bionicle by altering the rules of Magic a bit (ie. changing the flavour of specific mechanics, possibly adding a sixth colour, ect). The storyline would remain the same as above.
    3. Bionicle Inspired Magic: the Gathering: in this case, taking aspects and themes in Bionicle and creating new planes/worlds using them. (This would probably be the best way to go about it, as it gives us the most free reign to do what we want without having to alter rules too much. Flavour is easier to bend than mechanics)

    Well, that's my proposition. Please reply and/or PM me if you're interested in this idea or have any suggestions :D


    Astris Janus


    Nice drawing, I really liked the fact that you used a Mask of Possibilities since it's a mask which was created as a drawing for Toa Nikila.

    Hehe, I liked the mask choice because it basically means luck.



    Which is exactly why I picked said mask :P But of course, after picking it I had to use the Nikilia artwork for reference. I do like the design of the mask ^_^


    Astris Janus

  11. I reblogged this on tumblr not too long ago actually, I jokingly called him a Toa from Le-Koro(Leprechaun Koro) in the tags. I think it makes more sense that he's an air Toa because of the green color, but when it comes to powers maybe plantlife is better, since he can grow clovers. Or maybe light because of rainbows.


    I don't know. But it's good, I like it, the gold in his design feels natural.


    Hahaha thanks for the reblog man, just saw it actually :P


    I considered a Toa of Air too, but it didn't have enough of a connection to leprechauns :P Also considered a Toa of Gold (EM style) but then I would lose the green elements to the design. Went with the Green to grow clovers :P Never thought about Light, though that is definitely an option.


    But yeah, thanks for the comment man :D


    Astris Janus


    Obsidian is a bit of a pain. Volcanic glass, extremely sharp and precise. Could have limited heat resistance, maybe something to do with actually having extreme precision or something, I dunno.


    Steel.... I guess Dr. O's suggestion of being harder to get dirty could work


    Plastic could have contaminant resistance, slightly enhanced durability (very slightly mind you) :P


    Oil could have a light layer of oil over their armour, allowing them to slip out of bindings or slide over some surfaces :P


    Well, a few ideas:


    Obsidian: Resistance to bright light (darker eye lenses) is the first thing I thought of, but I like your idea of them having greater physical finesses with their hands/eyes more.


    Steel: Outer armour is tougher than any other type of Matoran, but they lack the overall enhanced strength/durability of Po/Fe-Matoran.


    Plastics: Have some mechanical components made of plastic, making them physically lighter while being just as durable as regular Matoran?


    Oil: Natural affinity for working with/refining chemicals.




    A question: Would it be possible for us to have an official Expanded Multiverse RPG? I know that the Bionicle RPG forum only allows winners and the BZPRPG there, and I don't know a lot about RPGs in general, but I thought it might be an idea to throw out to everyone.



    Actually, those suggestions for powers seems pretty solid :) Never thought of the oil one, that was good :D


    And I thoroughly support this EMRPG idea :D I tried running an EM pen and paper RPG with some of my friends at one point, so I think this is a great idea. I'd love to help in anyway ^_^


    Astris Janus

  13. I am trying to figure out if you are trying to make Kopaka float or have him stand on the ground, because right now it appears he is floating in mid-air. If you are trying to ground him, he needs to have a shadow underneath him. Also, I think what would help is having some highlights to your work aside from all darker value. It will give an idea where that light is facing and might help make your work stand out more! Overall, good job!




    Yeah, next time I will definitely focus on grounding him better (Well, not the next one cause I want them floating, but after that one :P ) and on my highlights :)


    Looks really good, like the body and leg of it but the arms are too short and the mask is really odd to me.


    Now that I look at it again, the front arm is just a bit short. The back arm is meant to be bent behind him so that one is okay.

    And my god, I dislike the Akaku. I mean, I thought it would look good, but it was difficult to fit onto his face because it's so round >.< So I tried to moulded it to his face and... yeah.


    Thanks for the comments ^_^


    Astris Janus

  14. Hm, the biggest thing that sticks out to me are the khaki pants. It feels off-base when the rest of the body is armored, so maybe place a couple of protective plates on the pants? Using the black shoulder clips for shoulder pads was a smart idea. She does feel a little stiff, but then again so does a lot of the art drawn for Bionicle characters. Good work!


    Yeah, I regretted the casual clothes as soon as they were done. Next time just going with the body suit.

    I wasn't entirely happy with the pose either, but I couldn't seem to pull off a better one at the time :closedeyes: Might draw her again sometime and fix that. :)


    The "armor over casual clothes" look is a bit odd, I think. The khaki pants are what really stands out as awkward. Perhaps if they were navy blue or dark blue denim they'd match the color scheme better and wouldn't look so out-of-place.


    Her facial expression is nice, and she has a very feminine physique. The armor looks nice though her chest looks a little awkwardly high up for how full it is. Her lower legs also look a bit awkwardly column-like... I feel like they should be slightly narrower towards the ankles.


    The pose is a bit static-looking, but I think the epic water effects more than make up for it. Great colors and shading. I'd love to see a whole series of Toa Mata drawings like this!


    When its just the casual clothes, the khakis look soo much better cause they provide more contrast to the pic. But yeah, here they're odd.

    I was a tad under the pump when drawing this (working under self imposed deadlines) so I get what you mean about the legs and the chest piece. I think by the time I was done with them I was too focused on getting the water right to worry about it again.

    Funny you should say you'd like a series... :P I asked some friends which element I should do first, and the first reply was water, the next was ice. So expect that one soon :D


    Thanks for all the comments ^_^


    Astris Janus

  15. Well, here she is:


    Gali, Toa of Water

    Was mostly happy with how this turned out. First time drawing water, which was interesting and aggravating at times :P Just so you know, her armour is over her normal clothing... which is on top of a black body suit that comes out when her armour is activated... yeah, should have just gone with the body suit :P


    Anyway, C&C much appreciated ^_^


    Astris Janus

  16. Oh wow. This is simply brilliant :D

    There's a simple, cartoony style that makes me think of Derrick J. Wyatt (of Teen Titans and Ben 10 Omniverse fame) and I love it. The posing is awesome, it's nice and clean and you can see the simplified versions of pieces from the set made all mechanical :D

    Love it, plain and simple ^_^


    Astris Janus

  17. This artwork is pretty appealing, especially the way you blended the colors with one another, thus giving the values and a texture on the mask. Even if the lineart is rough, I still like that kind of style because it gives that spray paint graffiti look to it.


    I also see you are trying to do a 3/4 body view for your artwork, which the proportions seem slightly off because you can see the chest armor kind of facing almost towards us while the rest of the body is doing the 3/4 view. It's okay, just gotta practice that a little more and you will get it! Plus drawing a view like that while the figure is kind of leaning can be hard.


    Overall, you did a splendid job! Can't wait to see more works from you! :D




    Thanks man! :D

    Yeah, the 3/4 body view is much easier to do on a normal person, not so much on a Bionicle :P I'll definitely be practising some more with drawing Bionicle-based figures. ^_^

    I'm working on ideas for future illustrations at the moment actually, but I might save it for another day. Gotta do some reworking on my Humanised Toa too :P


    Astris Janus

  18. My Mata Nui, this is good! :D

    I'm loving the style; very organic and mechanical (exactly as it should be :P ), looking like it could be real while maintaining the look of pieces within the set :D I'm also rather impressed by the way you chose to render his name; nice and simple, very stylish though.

    Only criticisms would be that it'd be nice to see some more detail on the sword, the "A" in "Tahu" seems to be missing its crossbar (though that could've been intentional) and the fact that the end of "Mata" doesn't end flush with the end of "Tahu" (forgive me for nitpicking, I was in a design course and I kinda pick up on that stuff :P )

    Overall, pretty fantastic :D Keep it up ^_^


    Astris Janus

  19. I enjoyed the picture very much. The date of illustration was mildly disconcerting however. :P


    Hey hey heeyy... I'm from Australia :P Down here we do dates Day/Month/Year, so this was completed 5th of January, 2014 :P


    The art style is fantastic, and in a way reminds me of LoMN. The armour is recogniseable as Metru armour (or at least heavily influenced), the colours are balanced... but what really keeps fascinating me is the face. Both style and expression make it appear quite lively, it has that ...spark of life (for the lack of a better way of putting it). So yeah, like it a lot.


    The lineart could be abit cleaner, but it seems like you took a scan of a pencil drawing and darkened the lines, so for that it's actually quite nice. =D


    Love it, and it's nice to see some of your art! =)


    It's been a while since I've posted any art, but it's good to be back ^_^ Hopefully I'll end up doing more Bionicle art as I go through my project for this year :D

    And I've finally got my Bionicle drawing style down! XD Could use some refinement but it's getting there :P

    I was always planing on going with a Toa Metru look for Vanus (the matoran who become him were from Metru Nui originally so it seemed natural), and I was heavily influenced by the LoMN style as well as trying to keep with set accuracy (partially because of Legend Reborn :P ).

    I'm extremely glad that he appears to have that "spark of life". It's something I strive to achieve in all the the things I draw ^_^

    And you're very close, I inked it with a fine point marker before scanning :P I need to work on my inking, make it a bit smoother, but this one was going to be rough anyway (was running out of time).


    Thanks for the comments :D Glad to see people taking an interest ^_^


    Astris Janus

  20. Thanks man :D

    Lot's of reference to Toa Metru shots for the armour really helped :P

    And yes that is a Hau-Huna fusion (Hauna? :P). The two characters that make up Vanus wear a Hau and a Huna respectively so this is the result :D


    Astris Janus


    Lava; I like this actually. Could be fun for writing :P How high were you thinking the temperatures would go btw?

    Just shy of boiling/freezing temperatures :P. No, seriously, though, probably somewhere where it approaches those.

    Wood; Maybe, but less than Vi-Matoran. The climbing idea Dr. O suggested might be a good fit too

    Much like with the Glass/Crystal thing, since Matoran of Wood will have less gardening skills, might as well give them the climbing skills, too


    Well, that's my piece. Hope it helps ^_^

    It certainly does

    Astris Janus


    Exactly what I was going for with the wood ^_^

    With the lava, would you want it to go to freezing? I mean, wouldn't it make more sense for their lowest temp to be normal Matoran body temperature and only rise from there, being Matoran of lava? Boiling temps could be fun actually. Make them angry, use it against opponents XP


    And glad I could help ^_^


    Astris Janus

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