A theory about the Makuta's Teleportation power

(This is meant to be a theory/discussion, which is why I didn’t put it in Ask Greg.)

There are three things I’ve recently been wondering about:

  • a) What actually is the range of a Makuta’s power of Teleportation?
  • b) Why aren’t Makuta using it more frequently? - Teleportation surely is a lot faster than walking or even flying.
  • c) A lot of Makuta likely died because they couldn’t find a new body in time. Why couldn’t they simply teleport back to Destral to get help?

So, here are my theories to answer these questions:

a) The range:
I’d say that the range of a Makuta’s Teleportation power is potentially infinite. However, the greater the distance, the more difficult it gets to assemble all your atoms at the right spot. So if you mess things up you could end up “smeared” across a few hundred bio. That’s basically what happened to Icarax when Gorast robbed him of control of his power - he was “smeared” all across the Matoran Universe. I’d say this also applies to teleporting others - it gets more difficult the higher the distance and the more people are teleported.

b) Why walk?:
Aside from the risk of messing things up as described above, it might also be risky to teleport to places which you can’t see from your starting point. What if some obstacle is right at the point of your destination? That could easily cut you in half, when for example your upper body materializes above some rock, but your lower body can’t, since the rock is in your way, likely resulting in the atoms of your lower body randomly appearing in the nearest unoccupied space.
Also I think you wouldn’t be able to teleport to places you’ve never seen or can’t remember well enough. Maybe all Makuta had memorized and secured a few points in the Matoran Universe they could safely teleport to, but in between they’d use other means of getting to places.

c) Teleporting in gaseous form:
I’d say it definitely has to be possible - because there’s absolutely no way Teridax could have gotten from above the Southern Continent to Metru Nui and the core processor in the time between the destruction of his Maxilos body and Matoro’s sacrifice otherwise.
I’d say teleporting in gaseous form, without a body, is incredibly hard to do, though. After all a Makuta would likely have to concentrate on three things at once: keeping the cloud of gas that is him together, replenishing the parts of his substance that are constantly dissipating while he doesn’t have a body and the task of teleporting itself. Thus teleportation in this state probably is at least as likely to kill you as to work.


It’s magic


Maybe in some cases walking was more enjoyable?


I think the answer lies in the MNOG, actually. According to Kapura, teleportation requires practice. How many Makuta are willing to spend that much time practicing like Kapura when you could do something easier, such as walking? Ol’ Teri probably did because he knew that he’d need to (as you said, it’s the only way he could have gotten to the core processor in time).

Otherwise, I think the rest of the Makuta were satisfied with the ability to teleport behind their enemy in a fight or something.


It probably takes a lot out of them to teleport

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That’s actually a good point. With 42 powers to choose from plus their Kanohi and weapons most Makuta would probably only use and practice a few of them in depth. Be it out of habit or because it’s enough to reach their goals most of the time. I always felt like the books actually indicated something like that sometimes - Gorast for example seems to be heavily relying on her Kanohi to defeat opponents with their own powers. Krika often uses his power of intangibility to avoid taking hits while he can strike back from a distance. Bitil uses his Kanohi and shadow powers to simply rain down attacks on opponents and break through their defense. Chirox seems to have mostly specialized in shadow powers, while Mutran apparently is a bit more trained in mind affecting powers.
Warrior Makuta might also have trained more of their powers than scientist Makuta - simply because in a fight it’s good to have a wide repertory of options.

I’m mainly talking about great distances, though. Sure it’s easier to walk into the next room than to teleport there, but what about the immense time-save by teleporting from, say, the Southern Continent to Visorak. Flying or taking a ship would probably take days. But then as I said before, such travels are a little risky and if you actually have the time you’re probably better off not teleporting.
And come to think of it the only Makuta we saw traveling around teh Matoran Universe at length was Miserix - and he probably wouldn’t feel save to teleport, mostly because it’s been 80,000 years since he last saw any of the places he could potentially teleport to.

Hm… Yeah, teleporting could maybe be similar to shapeshifting in that regard. You need to use up a certain amount of energy stored in your body mass in order to make the process work. So with every teleportation a Makuta directly looses accumulated power in proportion to the distance they teleported across.


Time to do some math.
The GSR is 40 million feet tall, which equates to about 7575 miles. The Rockoh T3, the slowest Karda Nui aerial vehicle can exert 2.5 million pounds of thrust. Essentially, that’s just slightly less than a Space Shuttle’s Solid Rocket Booster Engine. I’m going to use a real life Rocket Booster to stand in for the Rockoh, since the booster is safely much heavier than the Karda Nui Aerial vehicle. My stand in is capable of travelling just over 12,000 mph, which means it could go from Metru Nui to the southern continent in under one hour. Since the Rockoh is much lighter, and F (in this case, thrust) = m*a, it’s safe to assume that the Rockoh would be even faster.

Even if we assume that the Makuta aren’t as fast, I think that flying is still fast enough to be worth it. Remember, Bionicle universe physics are slightly different than ours. Stuff moves fairly quickly.


I looked up “Teleportation” on BS01, and it seems that all of the creatures, and characters that have that power use it within your guidelines: The Kualsi can only teleport to a place you can see, Gaardus can only teleport to places he’s been to, Botar is usually headed to the pit, and Fader Bulls do sometimes teleport into solid objects, and die.
So overall I support this theory.


I’m not sure if any of these vehicles is a particularly good example for standard travel speed, though :stuck_out_tongue: . After all, those things were able to outrun an energy storm. Bitil on the other hand probably hardly made a hundred meters before the storm caught up to him - and the storm wasn’t even at its full strength yet, if I remember correctly. I’d thus argue that without any means of hightech transportation it would take a Makuta some time to get from the Southern Continent to Metru Nui - and even longer to get to Visorak, since first you’d have to travel all the way up to the shoulder of the Great Spirit Robot and then down the entire length of its arm.

Well, if you have the time. Even with distances that can be easily flown across within an hour we’re still talking about the difference of being there instantly or after an hour.


In the serial written from the perspective of Mutran (I can’t find the name of it because BS01 is freaking out for me), he states that he and Gorast fly somewhere. This gives us canonical evidence that flight was used instead of teleportation or something more high-tech when travelling to an unknown place.


The Mutran Chronicles?

And good catch. They do fly themselves. I guess the point being debated here is how fast can a Makuta fly?


Yeah, thanks.

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Wasn’t that when they were traveling to the fortress of one of the Barraki? In that case it maybe wouldn’t have been save and/or possible to teleport there, since they maybe didn’t know the place well enough.

Actually the main question is why we hardly ever saw Makuta teleporting - the only two Makuta who we actually saw attempting it both died during (or slightly before in Bitil’s case) the process. But yes, the question of how fast a Makuta can actually fly definitely might be a key point to why we never saw much teleporting.

I’d say that the Karda Nui vehicles are faster than a Kanohi Kakama user at top speed. A Kakama user is definitely a lot faster than a Makuta.
If comparing the stats given for teh Phantoka, both, Lewa and Vamprah have an agility of 13. Lewa is a Toa of Air having Jetpacks. Vamprah only uses wings. However, Vamprah definitely has a more aerodynamic shape. Antroz and Chirox both have an agility of 12, though, so I’d say that if Makuta use their Shapeshifting powers they can actually get decently fast. (Icarax actually has an agility of 18, but I’d say this isn’t really comparable since he’s a titan set and thus his stats were a little exaggerated.) Mutran actually only has an agility of 10 here - but then he’s a scientist and not a warrior.

I’d still say that to travel from Metru Nui to the very south of the Matoran Universe they might need up to a week of pure travel time.


It also might be worth noting that we’re talking about beings with a potentially endless lifespan. So while a week might seem like a lot of travel to us, it might feel like a tiny sliver of time compared to the millennia they’ve been alive.


And after the Makuta’s evolution they didn’t even need rest or “food” anymore.

Still, if they’d gotten a message that some Rahi was loose in their laboratory at the other end of the Great Spirit Robot, they’d probably rather want to be there sooner than later. But then there weren’t many occassions like this in the canon story, so that might explain why they hardly ever teleported except in emergencies.


It’s also possible that Makuta stayed very localized later in the story. Most Makuta had assigned regions, and probably had little need to venture outside them. This would cut not only the distance, but the time. Think about how travel works in real life: you could fly to the next state over, but in most cases it’s just more convenient to drive. Similarly, if what we’re saying about teleportation is true, its probably just more convenient to fly within a Makuta’s given domain.


Huh, now that you mentioned that I immediately wondered how the teleporting sytem of Destral might work. So, the Matoran Universe is made up of domes of various sizes with islands in them. Which domes are big enough to also hold an island half the size of Metru Nui, though? And even those who can - there probably are only so many places where Destral does actually fit. So maybe Destral can’t teleport everywhere (or at least it really shouldn’t be tried out), but only has a list of places where it could teleport to safely.
I wonder what would happen to some unfortunate ship in the way, though…

And there are a few more problems with a whole island teleporting - weight ■■■■■ within the Great Spirit Robot, the question of how Destral can still be attached to the Energized Protodermis network (although that’s not a canon thing but rather a concept I like - putting it in very simple words: Energized Protodermis is the “blood” of the Great Spirit Robot)…


Perhaps Destral’s system can only move the island between a limited number of specified locations. Kind of like teleporting in Breath of the Wild, where you can only go to towers or shrines. Having scouted out convenient and open locations, they installed part of the teleporter mechanism there. When they want to teleport, they choose one of the locations, and they go.

Given that we’re talking about a 40-million-foot-tall robot designed to hold a ‘universe’, I’ve basically assumed that it was designed to not care about things like that.


More Math!
Okay, so if we assume that the Makuta are resting for half of that time, it gives three and a half days flight time for a distance of 7575 miles, which is about 90 mph. The fastest gliding bird on this planet (White Throated Needletail) flies 105 mph. I’m willing to bet that the Makuta are significantly faster than this bird, but without knowing how much faster, it’s useless to speculate the time they could save.


Two more things came to my mind, but each of them also raises new questions…

  1. Healing/Repairing by teleporting
    So, the Makuta’s Teleportation power works by first dissolving the targets substance into its atoms and then reassembling it at its destination. Let’s say someone rammed a sword through the chest of a Makuta, leaving a big hole in his armor. What would keep the Makuta from teleporting and upon reassembling himself to reassemble his armor undamaged?
    The problem I see here - a lot of Makuta probably died because of a damaged armor and their Antidermis dissipating. Why didn’t they simply teleport a step away and repair themselves? Maybe some Makuta lack the concentration to teleport during a fight, but this opens up the question of how long they can stay within a leaky body.

  2. How does travel by teleportation actually work?
    The Makuta dissolve into their atoms and reassemble themselves at their destination. How do their atoms get there, though? The point is, what if the atoms actually have to “fly” there, too? Meaning teleporting wouldn’t be faster than normal flying after all. The only benefit of teleporting would be that a Makuta could travel through obstacles and be absolutely untraceable during the process.
    But then Icarax tried to teleport to the Codrex because he knew he couldn’t otherwise reach it in time and Bitil tried to teleport to escape the energy storm. And as I already said, Teridax had to be really fast in order to reach the Core Processor in time.
    However, mass can be turned into energy, right? So what if Makuta are able to use up part of their body mass to set free energy that makes their atoms fly faster? That would make traveling far distances not only risky but extremely taxing if you wanted to be there quicker than normal. So if things really weren’t too urgent, flying wouldn’t actually be much slower.