Is LEGO Disrespecting Bionicle?

But not everyone knows who the “Women of Nasa” are, though.

I am not saying that… My point again is that those sets have a very specific target demographic, and most other people wouldn’t have been interested in them. If those made it, there is a bigger chance that our project will make it too.

And I’m saying you are incorrect. BIONICLE has a very specific target demographic. Space, NASA, science, etc does not.

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What about other LEGO Ideas sets, such as Big Bang Theory or Freinds? I may be wrong, but I don’t know if those appealed outside of fans of the show.

Literally the two most famous sitcoms of all time. That is a huge audience, and the FRIENDS set has gone out of stock - twice.

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My parents watch both of those for crying out loud. Saying that fans of those shows isn’t a significant demographic and that the fanbase of BIONICLE somehow is, is honestly just ignorant. That’s like saying, if it was made and LEGO would actually approve it (they wouldn’t, but let’s entertain the idea), that a Game of Thrones set wouldn’t sell because it only appeals to fans of the show.

It’s not about it only appealing to a specific audience, it’s a matter of how big that audience is, and relatively speaking we’re not a very big audience. I want this set to happen just as much as you do, but I implore you to look at the facts here before you start making baseless statements.

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So that this dance doesn’t have to continue, let’s swiftly go through every single Lego Ideas set.

Shinkai 6500: One of the earliest models to be chosen back in the CUUSOO days, this was one of the test models. Limited release only in Japan, only 10,000 sets made, every single one of them was bought. So you could try and claim this as having a “very specific target demographic,” and that’s because it was. This was the test run, of course it was targeted. But even then, Lego did things like the Maersk Triple-E Container Ship outside of Ideas; it would have been a very board demographic outside of it if they went all the way.

Hayabusa: A Japanese spacecraft, not even one of the popular NASA ones, was not only made into a set back in the old CUUSOO days, but was the first one to be released internationally. I think that says a lot about space sets and why so many of them continue to get made. And it only came out a year after the Shinkai 65000, this site was still in its testing phase.

Micro World: It’s Minecraft. I don’t need to give a reason.

Back to the Future Time Machine: Now this is an important one. Yes, big famous blockbuster trilogy, tons of people have seen or know the classic. But this is the one where Lego likely realized that not only was it viable to sell products of properties that were dead (nothing new was being produced for it), but that the IP owners were happy to have Lego do stuff with it.

Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity Rover: Now NASA based sets go way back to at least 1995 with the Launch Command line, 2003 with the Discovery Kids channel, 2011 with Space Shuttle Endeavour, and many more as we see down the line. NASA and IRL outer space is a powerhouse of a market. As a matter of fact, not too long ago Lego Ideas held a vote for one of the rejected projects to be brought back and turned into a set. And it was another NASA set…partially because NASA told everyone on Twitter to vote for it. Though so I don’t have to repeat myself, group NASA Apollo Saturn V with this.

Ghostbusters Ecto-1: Similar to the Back To The Future set, but this time a new movie was being produced. A generation changing classic, heavily beloved and known by millions. Can’t have as easy of an internet outrage if that was not the case.

Exo Suit: This one I would say has the smallest demographic. It’s a very specific style of hardsuit/exo-suit that only a small, but dedicated group of MOCists tend to build. And you can see how much Lego changed it to make it appeal to a broader audience. Adding bright green figures and making them like Classic Space to grab the heart strings of older fans. Added a cute robot turtle that kids and moms alike would love. And a more kid friendly mech, because lots of people love mechs. And even though this is the most MOC-like of the bunch, Lego already had the rights to it. It appeared in a Lego book and in one of the Master Builder Academy sets prior to becoming an official set in Lego Ideas. Basically, Lego already had it in their hands and advertised it to tons of kids.

Research Institute: It’s basically a minifigure pack. A minifigure pack encouraging women in science and has small vignettes that would be perfect for any Lego City. Really, it’s basically another City set, and those sell very well. And when it also promotes the trendy social thinking, how can one resist making all the money?

Birds: People love birds.

The Big Bang Theory: One of, if not the largest, and most watch sitcom of all time. Not just within the US, but across the entire globe. It is a powerhouse of a property that has managed to create a very successful spin-off. This is a property scammers have been taking advantage of on Ebay and other sites for years. People want their favorite characters in Minifigure form, especially something as large as this.

WALL•E: Beloved Pixar film. Do I really have to explain it?

Doctor Who: A show that’s been around for as long as it has and successful as it has…you can’t say it’s a small demographic. Specially with how synonymous it has become with nerd culture.

Maze: Like all those other maze puzzle games you see constantly in stores, but now Lego.

The Beatles Yellow Submarine: It would be like making a set of Elvis or Michael Jackson. Everyone has heard of them, everyone knows of them, no-one will shut up about them. If it didn’t make bank, that would be the surprise.

Caterham Seven 620R: Fun fact, the two most common Lego Ideas projects are car and train models. When Lego started that rule where you couldn’t do properties they already held the license for, almost all car projects vanished. People love cars, they love model cars, and this is a very nice and popular car.

Adventure Time: Super popular cartoon show.

Old Fishing Store: Generic appeal as with City and Modular Building sets, but one Lego didn’t think of doing yet.

Voltron: Now if it wasn’t for internal bias at Lego, you could dismiss this one. It is one of the smaller demographics; most people know it about as well as they know He-Man and Thunder Cats. A good number to be sure, but not huge. But then that Netflix show happened and suddenly it was in vogue again. Even though its of the original version, now everyone can have Voltron in Lego. That and its a colorful mech made of cats, there’s a reason why this property was still remembered and brought back.

Women of NASA: I separated this one from the rover for a main reason. Aside from the NASA reasons, there is a political agenda behind this as much as a historical one. It’s not only giving proper credit to individual who are otherwise ignored or not talked about as much, it’s putting them front and center of the spotlight. And with a similar films coming out around that time about that same subject, there was a ton of marketing buzz for it. People wanted this representation in their Lego, NASA fan, history fan, or otherwise.

Ship in a Bottle: One of the coolest things to make, but now in Lego. Everyone likes impossible bottles and now they can do it in Lego.

Tron Legacy: Another one with a smaller demographic. Lots of people know Tron, lots of people reference Tron,and it has a cult following…But, yeah, definitely one of the smaller ones. Honestly, the only thing helping it would be the popularity of Kingdom Hearts and its appearance in those games. But even though it’s smaller, it’s still a much larger following than Bionicle. Because Disney.

Pop-Up Book: It’s in the name, it’s an item people already love, but in Lego.

The Flintstones: Before the Simpsons took the title, it was The Flintstones that was the longest running and most successful animated TV show. Especially one with a more adult-target demographic. And they are still so popular that there’s successful cereal brands with them.

Steamboat Willie: The sole reason why public domain laws keep getting pushed back. If that doesn’t tell you of its notoriety and power, I don’t know what will.

Treehouse: Lego somehow hasn’t done this yet. It’s most children’s dreams to have a treehouse. Now in Lego form to print money.

Central Perk: Before Big Bang took its title (and it can be argued that it hasn’t still), Friends was the undisputed king of sitcoms. When the show ended, it continue to run as reruns and basically was not off the air until streaming services like Netflix came along. The ratings and amount of views it in the States alone, not to mention world wide, is thought to spell doom for whatever platform is unable to keep it.

Dinosaur Fossils: Dinosaurs, but with more spooks.

Honestly, you would have an easier time arguing for Idea Projects that had a huge demographic and were rejected. They turned down plenty of bankable projects, even ones that didn’t require a license.

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So what you are saying is basically that all the LEGO Ideas projects that were made to this point have a huge audience, with Bionicle being the only exception?

It’s kinda hard for me to believe that, since I didn’t even know half of those IP’s even existed before the sets came out… And I’d be really surprised if I was the only one.

I think the point people are trying to make here is that that’s your subjective experience. Just because you yourself hadn’t heard of those things doesn’t mean they lack large audiences. It just means that large audience doesn’t happen to include you.

Now obviously Bionicle isn’t nearly as big as some of those things. Despite that, I do think Sokoda’s set has a lot going for it that gives it a decent chance of being selected. For one, I think the speedy support time is definitely unique and shows the passion behind the project. Secondly is that it’s just a really well-built set and that it very conceivably could be a real LEGO set already. Lastly is that it is supposed to be a tribute to the theme and it couldn’t have come at a better time. While I know a lot of people here don’t seem to think LEGO cares about Bionicle, I hold the personal opinion that they do realize how much it means to us fans, and I think they might have it in them to grant us this dream come true.

But we’ll see what happens. If it makes it as a set, that will be probably the biggest victory in Bionicle’s history. If it doesn’t, then it’s still amazing that the community banded together to get it to 10,000, and it shows that we can keep doing that for future projects. Either way, it’s a win in my book.

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  1. Sokoda’s Bionicle set hasn’t been made yet.

  2. Yes, he is. Most of the other projects that have gotten to 10K supporters have a stronger reason for doing so than Bionicle. Let’s look at one set in particular.

This is the Kakapo, the world’s only flightless parrot, an endangered species, and one of the models that reached 10K supporters. It lost to FRIENDS.

You may not have known what a Kakapo was until now, but you can’t deny this set has appeal. It’s an endangered species which helps LEGO push the environmentalism agenda they’ve been less than subtly pushing for a while now, a build small enough to fit in your hand despite the Kakapo actually being very large, and it’s also an incredibly cute parrot build, all things which would garner reasonable appeal.

For Sokoda’s model, as well-built as it is, it’s… Bionicle. That’s the only thing drawing people to it.[quote=“Pakari, post:129, topic:50060”]
I think the speedy support time is definitely unique and shows the passion behind the project.
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Ah, but LEGO’s been dealing with the Bionicle community for longer than almost everyone in it. It’s like trying to pet a porcupine who’s just eaten a wasp nest. I’ve barely been in the community that long and I can say with a fair amount of confidence that we’re not nearly as nice and wholesome - much less marketable - then what David’s been hinting at.

Also, it’s easy to draw 10K supporters from a fandom which is constantly active and looking for a chance to do something like that. FRIENDS, on the other hand, needs a demographic which is probably not on LEGO Ideas much at all, and the speed in which it collected its votes shows that more people than the ones on the site want it to be a set. While Bionicle may have tens of thousands, the other projects have hundreds of thousands and sometimes even millions.

Also, if LEGO is planning anything at all with Bionicle in the next few years, I don’t see them approving this as a set. There’s arguments for why they would in that instance, of course, but I don’t think LEGO would do that riding off of G2. So if it isn’t approved, chin up.

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Tho what if they use this model as a test, to see if it would atract enough people for G3?

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This has now become massively off-topic. We’re gonna cease this discussion here, as it’s better suited for another topic.

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