Cultural Influences in Bionicle

This topic is going to start with a bit of speculation, but feel free to contribute verifiable fact as well.

Several years ago, my World History teacher ran a unit on ancient Indian history; one aspect of the unit was the Ramayana an epic poem written on the subcontinent hundreds of years ago. All in all, it wasn’t particularily interesting, until a certain part of the story came up.

Anyways, one of the species in the poem is the Rakshasas, or Rakshasis. One omits the final “s” for the singular form. They are demonic creatures portrayed with prominent teeth, and are sometimes described as being born from the breath, or life-force, of a god. Does that sound like anything in particular to G1 to you guys?

I’m pretty sure that the story team working on 2003 drew inspiration from the “Rakshasi”. Does anyone else have any similar speculation or fact? I’m aware of the strong Maori influence, but does anyone know of many others?


Sounds plausible enough. Although I don’t have a source for it, I was sure I read something about the rahkshi taking influence from Alien. (or was it predator? I always get the two mixed up)

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Well there is the obvious Māori culture that heavily influenced a lot of BIONICLE. A lot of the characters names come from they’re language.

There is also a lot of symbolism with Makuta and Mata Nui, that can be interpreted in a load of different ways and I’ll leave that for others.

The concept of elements was also a massive part of old age religions. The belief of different elements (wind, water, fire ect.) heavily influenced BIONICLE.


Kivoda (protector of water)…“Voda” means “water” in Serbian.

Umarak…“U mrak” means “In the darkness” in Serbian.