Chameleon Kraata/Rahkshi/Makuta power abilities

Dear Greg,

There’s basically no information on the Chameleon Rahkshi power aside from what was published online 2 decades ago, unfortunately.

How exactly does the Chameleon power function? Is it a colour-change ability like cephalopods have? When you blend into terrain and become unspottable/invisible, are you appearing as nothing altogether or as “part of the environment”? Does it operate when moving? At full strength, or diminished? (How could a Makuta who trained the ability get more mileage out of it?)

Fond regards from Buck.

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I do not know if Makuta can train with their powers in order to become stronger but I assume most of your questions are answered in the wiki.

5. Would a shadow kraata in a Rahkshi have the same level of control over its power as a Makuta, or would there still be a power difference?

5) No, it would not

7) Are all Makuta powers the equivalent of a Level 6 Kraata/Rahkshi, or are they even stronger?

7) Depends on the willpower of the individual Makuta

1. You recently remarked on the fact that Makuta’s powers are more potent the more they use them (something like that, I’m paraphrasing). Is this more like a human developing muscle (the more you use it, the more powerful it becomes), or more like a Toa exercising elemental powers (they never grow more powerful, only more skilled in their use)?

1) The latter

There’s another quote about it that I cannot find at the moment. As for Chameleon—I have scoured the Archives and been tweaking the Kraata power page. There is no more information on that specific power I can find, unless it’s filed under some egregious misspelling of the word.

Well the chameleon power was used in the final battle chapter 4. Here is the paragraph.

Using their flying abilities, the Toa descended through the hole to investigate. So caught up were they in this new discovery that none of them realized they had company: Antroz, hidden by his chameleon power and following the sounds of the Toa’s voices and movement. He had left Radiak behind, since his ability to disguise his presence would not extend to the Matoran. That left him vulnerable, but right now, he didn’t care. He sensed an amazing source of power down below, and he was going to find it.

So it seems it is limited to the user and it can possibly do a bit more than color changing since it said disguise his presence. And it can not only be used while moving but it can even be used while in flight as well since Antroz was following the flying Toa.

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The thing is that cephalopod camouflage specifically works by colour changing, albeit on a very particular scale (which I think means most people would not consider it “colour changing”, but still – they’re called chromatophores for a reason).

I actually had the quote brought up to me by another user in the GA server, but thanks for listing it here too :slight_smile:

The main thing is that I don’t think we can really assume much about it other than that it helps him hide. It could very well be only effective while stationary, thus allowing him to hide whenever he hears the Toa Nuva turn back. Or it could be effective while stationary and effective to a lesser extent while moving. Or fully effective 100% of the time.

I have to ask, because Chameleon in traditional RPGs ranges from degrees of invisibility (incl. the notorious Oblivion 100% Chameleon effect) to “you are only invisible if you stay still” (TES: Daggerfall, Bioshock) to “disguise yourself as a prop in the scenery”, and it’s such a massive gap that it really bears asking because it drastically modifies how the power is used.

I found an example of a Rahi based chameleon power so it is something to compare it to even if it is not the kraata power.

Not very far away, Hahli was swimming slowly through the narrow passages of the reef. She had used her mask power to give her a chameleon ability, so that her body blended in with her surroundings. She knew the outcome of her skirmish with the Barraki was an exception to the rule. Under the sea, whoever struck first usually won the battle, and Hahli was determined it would be her.

If this power is like the kraata version it seems it can blend with the surroundings even while moving and blending in with water. So it could be possible for Antroz to use it in flight and still blend in as long as he did not make too many disturbances.

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There’s this and the mention of a Dark Hunter with a chameleon ability (who I do not believe was seen showcasing the ability?), who may be Triglax. Nothing says it’s functionally the same (or not the same, for that matter) as the Kraata/Rahkshi/Makuta version of the ability, especially given that it says “a chameleon ability”. E.g. holographic illusions via Light/Mahiki c.f. K/R/M Illusion.

Triglax was in No One Gets Left Behind, and it’s not chameleon power, it’s just shapeshifting. It was refered to as chameleon in The Many Deaths of Toa Tuyet, but was later confirmed to be only shapeshifting. The Roporak and Hahli Mahri used chameleon powers.

Based on the references above, I get the sense that it allows a being to change their color and to an extent, their texture, or at the very least the surface texture of their body. Being the same color as a tree won’t hide you very well if your armor is still glossy and reflective.

In terms of real life parallels that we can draw information from, Chameleon is unfortunately not the ideal name for the power; chameleons in general don’t actually change color to reflect their surroundings. Their colors change based both on mood and their temperature. Dark colors absorb more heat, so a cold chameleon may darker it’s skin in order to absorb warmth more efficiently.

Octopuses however, have access to both the chromatophores in their skin to change color and the ability to vary their texture. I’m not certain to exactly what extent, but by scrunching up, their surface becomes bumpier and more closely resembles moss or seaweed, while flattening out/stretching their surface gives them a smoother taut appearance. I could see beings with the Chameleon power doing something to their surface similar to manipulating ferrofluid, where they can control both the color of the material, and whether or not their skin/armor is smooth, pointed, bumpy, or any combination therein depending on their surroundings.

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