it’s no secret that constraction is dead. Has been for years now. Bionicle died twice, Star Wars Constraction died a slow and painful death, and no other theme exists anymore.
But is it that Constraction just isn’t viable, or that Lego isn’t doing it right?
Consider this: Bionicle G1 failed due to an overcomplicated story. Hero Factory failed due to being sacrificed for Bionicle G2. G2 ended because it… sold well. And then Star Wars Constraction ended because it had way too overpriced sets.
None of these are inherently because CCBS is bad or anything. In fact, considering Bionicle was once hugely popular, clearly the building system can be popular.
So I ask: can constraction be viable again? And if so, how? Should Lego make constraction sets of, say, Ninjago, or would those fail just as the Chima ultrabuilds did? Or perhaps an entirely new theme, not bound to the shackles of licensing like Star Wars, and not doomed to incompatibility like Star Wars or Ninjago would be. A unique theme, not Bionicle or Hero Factory, but entirely new.
What do you think? Have we seen the last of Constraction, or can it be revived?
I think expensive figures are fine but I feel like they should be limited. Like make most of the line small 10$ protector sets and save the 25+ for some of the main vilains of the theme and maybe a figure with vehicle. I don’t think it’s ever been the themes it’s more that the important Characters you want are all expensive sets.
If I was a kid with just like 20$ allowance during g2 I’d rather get two protectors for play over just one big guy with no other toys to play with
There’s also the fact kids aren’t stupid like people seem to think. A standard good vs evil story is just kinda boring and not very memorable especially at the very beginning of a plot. It doesn’t need to be complex but at least not too basic.
Undoubtedly the greatest flexing of CCBS’ capabilities was Bionicle G2, and that only rode off the excellent visual designs in the first year. Hero Factory showed how varied the system could get in terms of character (namely villain) designs, but ultimately Bionicle’s return brought the system to its height.
CCBS is dead. LEGO has simply stopped producing figures designed off the skeleton-with-armor design concept. But constraction - the concept of constructing action figures in a more involved sense than something like Galidor - hasn’t died, and lives on in the form of mechs, brick-built minifigures, and so on and so forth.
As for what a lot of people would consider true constraction, building characters entirely comprised of specialized pieces, that day is simply gone. LEGO doesn’t operate that way anymore; CCBS survived due to how little new elements needed to be created whereas Bionicle was almost entirely new elements each year. If Bionicle were to return - and since the last time I made the if bionicle returns statement nothing about the community’s adamant raving has changed, which implies the answer is that it at some point will - expect to either see a heavy emphasis on action figures with LEGO elements incorporated in, literally just brickonicle, or the same system-built figures, mechs, and et cetera that we’ve been getting for a long while now.
I personally do believe that Constraction is viable, it just needs proper marketing… If it were up to me, I would think of a completely new Constraction theme, not tied to anything that came before it.
There is the new LEGO World Builder platform, so anything is possible. In my opinion, the future of Constraction (if there is one) without a doubt lies in this new platform. All we need to do is just come up with good ideas to submit there.
Bionicle G1 has not failed. It has gloriously ended.
Also, Bionicle G3 or re-release would be fantastic.
I think an antirely new theme would be actually cool. And not just theme, but building style/system. As Ghid said, just CCBS is not going to be anymore - it was good during the Hero Factory run, but after it, it became overused. CCBS is too simple, Bionicle G1 is too complex. I think a new building system should be somewhat medium: for example, CCBS-like universal set of “bones”, but armor that consists of many small specialized pieces that connect on pins/axles like in G1. Also, I think that a new theme should not be about humans - it is too hard to recreate skin or clothes with Lego. Clothes/bags/elements made of textile is a good idea for a new theme, I think. Constraction is totally viable, Lego just ran out of ideas. We need to give them new ones.
I would say that if done well constraction can be viable. I think a new theme is the way to go; something like a Ninjago level story and great sets. With $20 price tags for any toa sized figures, the sets can’t be less than excellent. I do agree with @Khalsa721 that the majority of the sets would need to be in the $10 range.
More likely uninspired and not detailed “good vs evil” stories are boring. Bionicle G1 also was just a good vs bad story in 2001, and people love that. Ninjago is a good vs evil story, Star Wars, Terminator, Transformers, and much more.
G2’s story would have been perfect, if there hadn’t been such big shoes to fill, and it had been nuanced. (So basically, change the name, and make more comics.)
True. I love hero’s but it could be interesting if lego tried evil vs evil like 2 rival alien races trying to take over earth or something like that. But yeah it’s all in the details and characters and unfortunately g2 lacked in both
I think brick-built figures are probably the most elegant solution to constraction.
I think the original Bionicle system is great. It’s complex, unique, and lends itself to a lot of interesting shapes and textures you don’t normally get from standard LEGO. I think it has a life of its own.
CCBS was also a great way to incorporate traditional LEGO design principles into that original system. I think its only flaw is the lack of parts for it, and that’s simply due to the fact that it wasn’t around for too long.
Both of those systems are beautifully merged with Technic, and CCBS blends well with the Bionicle system. But they exist in this weird limbo; with the creation of the Mixel joints, what is the purpose of the larger ball joint system? I think, especially considering their success with brick-built mechs, LEGO has moved away from Technic as a solution to large-scale action figures.
Back in the day, it was nearly impossible to do so with bricks. Technic was the only way to get something remotely articulate and sturdy. That evolved into Bionicle, and now, with Bionicle gone, I’m convinced the entire CCBS experiment was always meant for Bionicle.
I think LEGO tried to see if they could use CCBS for other things, but aside from the Star Wars figures, it seems it wasn’t their best seller. And once G2 ended, the entire system lost its reason for being.
To be honest, LEGO doesn’t really need a specialized figure-building system anymore. Characters and creatures can easily be made using standard bricks and Mixel joints, System has just become that diverse and complex. One only needs to look at the brick-built Bionicle Ideas projects to see that a specialized figure system is obsolete.
That being said, I’m glad constraction exists, and I’m almost kind of glad it’s been divorced from LEGO. Yes, we don’t get new parts, but it almost makes the Bionicle and CCBS systems their own contained art medium. The things I’ve seen on Instagram have an identity of their own, despite still being LEGO parts.
If LEGO were to make another constraction theme, it would likely just end up being Bionicle again. That would guarantee at least some base line of sales from the older fans, preventing it from being too much of a financial sinkhole if it sold poorly.
The exact scenario happened already with G2.
Same here. There are some that are okay for me here and there , but most of the time nope.
And I would be quite sad if future constractions were brickbuilt only, and CCBS was gone. I love the Exo-Force sets, and probably would like other mechs, but I don’t think it could exchange the G1 system or CCBS.
I also got some 2016 sets and boi, I really like handling them. So yeah, I hope future constraction lines/sets would use CCBS or something compatible with it.