After listening to the new podcast episode, I’ve been thinking about how the Rahkshi are being adapted- and i have a few criticisms.
Well, Kahi beat me to the punch here, but my first critique was that the Rahkshi should, for the most part, be unfamiliar with the Toa before coming into direct conflict with them. Too many coincidences, as has been stated, makes the story feel contrived- not to mention they’re unnecessary. Strong antagonists can easily be developed without direct relation to the protagonists. But this has been agreed upon already.
I also feel that this natural inclination on a large part of the community to make the Rahkshi’s power directly oppose the Toa to be unfounded. Why? A few reasons. The Rahkshi, in a situation where their powers directly correspond to the weaknesses of the Toa, exist (presumably) primarily as method of progressing the toa as characters, and forcing the toa to overcome their individual weaknesses. One of the problems with this is a contrivance factor. How likely is it that the first enemies of the Toa each have these powers diametrically opposed to the Toa? Furthermore, the one or two custom powers of the Rahkshi pitched by various members of the boards prioritize their effect on the Toa over how they affect the Rahkshi(or rather, how their personalities are reflected in these new powers they are granted). Generally, the Rahkshi have been treated as less than what they are; they have been treated as simply a method of advancing character growth of the protagonists, instead of the very unique, down to earth, round characters they could be.
Instead, I propose this: The Rahkshi are all in some way sympathetic- and just as importantly, have in some way been wronged unjustly by the society they once inhabited. The Rahkshi are, for the most part, outcasts, degenerates, and radicals- but all can, in some way, be understood and sympathized with. Their society has failed them, and in year two, the Civil War, these societal faults will come to light, and the society will be altered in some way. The Rahkshi may respond to the reforms in any way desired, but surely their responses will be very different and genuine. Some may be accepted back, some may reject or disbelieve the improvements, some may forgive their old culture, but still reject reentry, and still some may be angered that the changes took so long to occur at all, and continue in their violent campaign against the village.
This way, the Rahkshi not only endure their own character arcs, but have an impact on society- and continue to stay completely relevant throughout the first and second years of story. The Toa can do any number of things alongside the Rahkshi: Perhaps their primary focus is unity; perhaps simply training in combat and elemental prowess is their goal. Regardless, the precisely effective opposition of the toa’s weaknesses as proposed in the current pitches (Pitches where the rahkshi powers correspond to the Toa’s weaknesses) seems to me more of something that a mastermind villain such as Makuta would orchestrate after he gains the ability to do so (perhaps a year-three occurance).
If the Rahkshi’s powers are correspondent to themselves instead of the Toa, we may attribute nature of their newfound power to be of Makuta simply flowing power into the
cultists, enhancing their predispositions so much so that their powers end up inn the way that they do. Otherwise, Makuta either formatted their powers to match the weaknesses he couldn’t possibly know, or it happened that way by pure coincidence.