So I was just thinking…in a sense by technicality Makuta actually control Water, Ice, Air and fire So as we know Makuta can use Weather control which can create dangerous Blizzards and Rainstorms, they can use Vacuum which can create Vacuums and lastly they can use Plasma which can melt Objects with superheated plasma which is technically fire. So in an essence Makuta are not just beings with control of Shadow, but also beings with control over many elements that the Toa are more commonly associated with. They also have quite a few other Toa related powers such as magnetism and gravity and chain lightning and electricity. So anyway these are just my thoughts haha.
It’s important to note that, while Makuta can control parts of their environment in ways that Toa can as well, they don’t have Toa-level control over those Elements, and each power typically utilizes an Element in one very specific manner.
Very true and also good points.
I think this a case of the lore evolving over time. Pre-2003 Makuta’s powers weren’t well defined. And probably by design, too, given Makuta was originally some sort of spirit-like entity.
Then 2003 gave us the Rahkshi and their powers. Since kraata literally come from Makuta, it makes sense he would have their powers as well… and then LEGO made kraata packs and make 36 new kraata canon and so had to come up with 36 new powers for both them and, by extension, Makuta.
Some on the list were abilities we’ve seen Makuta previously used, such as rahi/insect control, weather control, shapeshifting, sleep, etc. And others were chosen just to fill out the list, such as the Bohrok-Kal powers, which weren’t elemental powers at the time.
It wasn’t until later when the list of elemental started to expand when some of the kraata powers retroactively became elemental ones. Had the secondary elements already been established in 2003, it’s likely Makuta’s elemental powers would have been exclusively Shadow, as was the case at the time.
The main difference and the reason Makuta do not “trully” control elements outside of shadow is that their other abilities are non-elemental, meaning they draw from their physical energy, not elemental energy.
The practical result is that the range of applications for powers like plasma or vacuum is much narrower than a level of control a Toa would have.
I am actually planning a bigger analysis topic detailing the many different kinds of energies used by the characters within story and their properties/differences.
Also it should be mentioned that when Makuta was controling the environment of the island, he was not doing so using his kraata powers, but by accessing and manipulating the GSR camouflage systems.
EDIT: It’s out: Many flavors of energy in the Matoran Universe