At Destral's Gate: Honor Guard

Hagah Time

After the Artakha contest, I wanted to do something a bit more left field and have a bit of fun with what I knew was going to be a kind of meh topic for contest. So, I reached out to @Crunchy to see if he was interested in the possibility of collaborating. As such, we came up with these guys.

Mask Designs:

Who I thought was gonna be the most strange character at the start ended up being the most orthodox in the end. Kualus’ a fairly standard Metru Build with a Guurahk staff and Metallic Blue armor.

He wears a custom designed mask based off the fandom iconic Makooti mask, redesigned with textural elements of 2004/05 to bring it in line with that year’s aesthetic. A goal of mine was to try and push the mask designs into a design space that complimented the Metru masks as an homage to the relationship the Metru Noble had with the Mata Greats. As such, the Makooti mask flips the silhouette of the Matatu to add some direct contrast whilst incorporating the cylinder motif of it and some ventilation aesthetic from the Noble into the design. It also takes paneling cues from the Hordika in the back.


Bomonga was interesting to part together. Early on Crunch experimented with a couple of wild silhouettes that played up the gentle giant idea, but many of those concepts potentially ran against contest rule violations. We ended up landing on a simpler hunchback look. He wields a custom spade type weapon and wears Flat Dark Gold armor.

His mask was based off a prompt Crunch suggested; to play off his size motif, his mask could be based off a hammerhead sharks head. The wide topped brow look contrasted nicely with the Ruru’s bottom heavy extruded cheeks, and with some tweaking, I managed to get the ventilation the Ruru Hordika imployed into its undercarriage. The mask also has gas canister cheeks to envoke some visual parallels to Norik, since even though both their masks are different shapes, you could understand at a glance there’s some connection between them.


Gaaki was primarily based off of a design Crunch had made for Toa Helryx prior to the contests. I knew he wanted to design her for sure going in to the collab, so I mainly provided buildability support. She has silver armor and a custom tool inspired by the trident of Gali Master.

Her mask was based primarily off of said Helryx design with some tweaks done to give it a more metru vibe. We didn’t settle on the mask just quite by the time the collab deadline came around, so there’s some discontinuity between our takes on it. There’s a but of injected influence from the Rau Hordika into the back side of the cheek paneling, and the overall plate aesthetic I think contrasts nicely with the Great Rau.


Pouks was a pain to finalize since unlike the prior three, we didn’t have much of an idea of where to go with him in the beginning. In the end, Crunch landed on a design that was loosely inspired by Saint-14 from the Destiny franchise. He wears Gunmetal Armor and has a mace head for his spear that is also based off the aforementioned concept Helryx.

His mask was a pain to finalize for the same reason mentioned above; we had no ideas for him for the longest time. Originally, I had him have a place holder Mask of Adaptation silhouette since I thought the idea of it subbing for Emulation seemed cute at the time. In the end, I think he went through about 20-ish rough ideas before landing on a hybrid of that Mask of Adaptation prompt remixed by Crunch with some ideas lifted from those concepts. Its final design lands somewhere between variant of mask and custom design that hurts my head thinking about; it did managed to have accentuated cheeks that contrasted the Komau’s hooded box look, so I’m happy. It even got some curved cheek cuts from it too.

Concept Art:

I do not give consent to change mask/spear designs for my renditions of these characters.


This is a really good entry I hope this wins!


your literal last minute entry is utterly thunderous. i’m no less than stunned.


Phenomenal work.
You two really knocked it out of the park!


This is incredible, fantastic work. Love how you played with Bomonga’s size in some of the art! and everyone’s personalities, and powers/abilities.


It would be nice to have a closeup of each toa, like you have for gaaki and pouks in your concept art section. Although the group shot is nice, the details of the toa are kinda dark and sketchy and hard to see in this style. I like bomonga’s mask, but I’m not sure about kualus or gaaki. Kualus’ mask looks really robotic which seems to go against his association with rahi. Overall though, they look cool!


If you turned Pouks to the front, you could easily resubmit this in the art contest and STILL make it to the final poll! I can totally see you winning!


Great job, man! :+1:

:open_mouth:Is that Bomonga fighting the Zivon? Awesome! :smiley::+1:


That incredibly atypical Bomonga design just might steal my vote.

It just might. It’s really good.

Epic work dude, best of luck


Some really good stuff here! It took me a solid minute to clock that the giant was Big Bomonga :laughing:. I really enjoy the masks as well, Pouks’ and Gaaki’s especially feel like something that could’ve been released in the line. Good luck in the contest!

Fantastic job on these, 10/10 best of luck in the contest

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God I love Beastmaster Kualus and his metallic blue armor.


Yeah these are winning. No doubt. And I’m 99% happy with that. My only real big criticism is that Kualus/Pouks don’t share a colour to make the team’s colour split even.

Does that mean colours can change? You might want to clarify that.

Never desappointed by your work Perp

Just confirming, there aren’t any individual illustrations of the characters that we’re missing? Your entry photo for them are their appearances in the group photo?


@Perp3tual Wait… did Crunch not post his?

Holy Gadunka , I hope this wins. Awesome job.

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These are pretty good, they look very cool together.

Heh, that Bomonga reminds me Metal gear for some reason.

For lack of a more graceful way to say it, yes. Originally, I wanted to flesh out the concept scale shot out into full character pieces, but I let the deadline sneak up on me. As such, the Group photo defaulted to being the primary piece. I am capable of isolating the needed characters individually, but I also understand if my Bomonga and Kualus cause more issues than needed for the voting process.

Bomonga Isolated:

Kualus Isolated: