well-known leaker on Instagram posted a “confirmation” that BIONICLE sets are slated to return in 2025. [CORRECTION: Exabricks is not a major leaker of information, rather he is known for collecting and centrally posting leaked information.] Here is a direct link to the post, with a screenshot below:
[One more edit for further clarification: the leak originates from FroggyShade, who allegedly has some sort of insider connection. FroggyShade posted the initial confirmation of more BIONICLE in 2025 by posting the phrase “In a time before time… 2025” to their Instagram story, after expressing disdain for the Instagram LEGO leaks community and LEGO’s treatment of NINJAGO showrunners Tommy Andreasen and Bragi Schut following the latest season of NINJAGO. FroggyShade is also the source of Exabricks’s other leak posted today, info on Ninjago City Apartments and the future release schedule of Ninjago City modular sets.]
I wanted to write a level-headed take on this to hopefully head off the hype before it gets out of hand.
First of all, we need to take this post with a grain of salt, simply because of the way LEGO likely perceives BIONICLE by now. I would have trouble finding direct confirmation of this take, but, as I’m aware, it’s the designers at LEGO who have love for the theme, not the corporate higher-ups. As much as we see references to BIONICLE in builds and stickers, the actual shot-callers at LEGO are, as far as we know, not interested in bringing back BIONICLE again. And why should they? The original line was canned after a precipitous drop in profits, and despite the resuscitation attempt that was 2009, it wasn’t enough. The 2015 revival was utterly reviled by fans of the original, and whether or not you believe it was LEGO’s own fault, it didn’t sell very well. When a BIONICLE tribute was included in the first round of the BrickLink Designer Program, it was one of the sets that failed to secure funding. Extenuating circumstances abound for all of these examples, but the message that the bean counters receive is “BIONICLE fans talk a lot of crap, but they sure aren’t ready to fork over actual money for the sets.” (You can say that the Tahu GWP went over well, but LEGO has no metric by which to measure the popularity of that set. It was a gift-with-purchase, not an actual set, and so they have no estimate for the revenue it garnered, nor how many people spent 100 dollars specifically for the chance to have the set, nor how many of those people would be interested in more BIONICLE.)
A counter-argument to this is that Exabricks is pretty well-regarded in this community, as far as I’m aware. I did some digging in his account to find some leaks that originated with him, but, as far as I could tell, most of his info originated from other leakers.
The LEGO leak ecosystem on Instagram is pretty tightly-knit and self-perpetuating, and it’s likely that, as a public account, Exabricks took down (or was forced to take down) some of his accurate predictions. [CORRECTION: Exabricks is not especially well-known for original insider reporting.] This is partially why I provided the direct link and screenshot, in case the post was taken down. My point is, do System LEGO fans hate BIONICLE enough that they would make up fake leaks and ruin their reputations just for the chance to upset us? I don’t think that’s the case. I know there’s animus but I like to think most community members (not all, of course - look at MandRProductions, the world’s biggest hater of LEGO Star Wars) have pretty level heads regarding this stuff.
So, now that we have one reason to disbelieve it and one to believe it, we sort of have net zero information. So let’s go through my thought process regarding this leak.
First of all, 2025 is a long way away - a year and a half, specifically. The oft-cited figure for the amount of time it takes to design a LEGO set is “1-2 years,” which puts us exactly in the window for when sets for a potential 2025 BIONICLE comeback would be designed, so the timeline lines up there. It’s even possible that the concept was created in the past couple weeks or even days and has been tentatively green-lighted, as an exploratory project.
Secondly, though, 2025 is a long way away, and anything could happen between then and now. From LEGO’s point of view, there has been no official announcement of the “existence” of this project. If it doesn’t go the way corporate wants, they can easily dump all the work they’ve done on it onto a hard drive somewhere and never think about it again. If we assume that this leak is 100% true, it is still not a given that it will release, because until there is a public announcement made, LEGO is under no binding agreement to release the theme. As we know from recent events, many LEGO sets that do get announced are getting cancelled (77014 Temple of Doom), and other leaks suggest that there are unreleased sets that may never come out (76221 Batmobile: Flash Tracking - note that Exabricks has reported that this set has been cancelled). My point - LEGO has demonstrated that they are not afraid to flush almost completely finalized sets if they want. Nothing will stop them from cancelling this theme between now and its supposed release date.
Thirdly, temper your expectations. Assuming that this leak is 100% true, and that it makes its 2025 release date, you should take it as a given that these sets will be made of System bricks. And they probably won’t feature minifigs, either - they will likely be made up of the so-called SCCBS elements that make up the Marvel, Star Wars, Ninjago, and Monkie Kid mecha that we’ve seen in the past few years. LEGO has come around to constraction a little bit in the past couple years, but only as an extension to full themes, not as a theme on its own. If they do push into a constraction-heavy theme like BIONICLE, it will be as an experiment with the limits of their system.
So, the conclusion I’ve come to is that it would be best to keep my hopes down, and potentially even try to forget that this leak exists. There are so many factors working against its legitimacy, and its accuracy, that it would be a better idea to let it go, and let come what may, rather than put a lot of energy into getting hyped for a theme that, if it does exist, may not even release when it’s supposed to. And if it does release, it may sorely disappoint fans who are not interested in System. Personally, I’d be buying this day 1, but I know people who would not be interested in collecting it because it is bricks. Anyways, thanks for reading, and practice digital media literacy.