What are your thoughts on HF in general over the years?

I got into it for about a year because Bionicle ended. I really liked 2.0, and was looking forward to 3.0, but it didn’t rise to my expectations.

I then just put most of my attention into Ninjago, and it wasn’t until summer last year that I started looking again at HF sets from a MoCing point of view. I picked up a few sets, and used those pieces in some MoCs.

I really like the idea behind Invasion from Below. It was the first time in a while that I got excited for new constraction sets. But overall, once again, IfB didn’t really fulfill what I expected. I bought Jaw Beast and the Furno Jet Machine, and they are fairly good sets.

Overall, HF had a lot of wasted potential. CCBS is an amazing system, and it is kinda sad to see that it took until 2015 to see it used in a really great way (with Technic gears and all).


I actually really like the HF universe. Though this is mostly due to JANGBRiCKS’ fantastic MOCs. The only wave I really liked set-wise was Breakout. I don’t think it deserves all of the bad rap BIONICLE G1 fans give it.

Overall, it was a theme that most definitely had it’s faults, but it had a cool universe that I could really get invested in.


That’s mostly why I liked HF a bit more than others I knew. I made my own HF universe instead of really paying attention to the canon.


I agree so much

hf is its own thing, its not meant to be bionicle, and was never planned to be bionicle.
whenever someone is talking about hf, and refers to bionicle as
“its not as complex as bionicle”
“its not as good as bionicle”
or worst of all
“its not bionicle”

it just makes me cringe.


Couldn’t have said it better myself.


Sets: Heroes were kind of bad, though I liked the helmets. Villains were better, but still in need of improvement.

Story: SO. MUCH. POTENTIAL. I don’t know if anyone got the little booklet thing that came with the Lego Magazine, but the stuff in there seemed really interesting.

For example, the descriptions there portrayed Rotor as desperate and driven to extremes because he knows capture means death, Surge terrified of his own power and the possibility of turning evil, and Meltdown being arguably the worst of the bunch, having apparently destroyed two major cities and presumably killing everyone within. It seemed like a lot of character development and thematic explorations of what defines ‘good’ and ‘evil’ could have been had.

But then the miniseries came out and Surge was annoying, Meltdown was incompetent, and Rotor was just another thug. My disappointment was enormous, and to this day, Meltdown is my only Hero Factory set.

Sets: Ugh. The worst of CCBS right on display. Villains were kind of neat, but the heroes were bland, boring, and the helmets were interchangable and void of personality in the worst possible way. I did like the return of purple, though.
Story: Heroes fight villains and lose. Heroes get upgrades. Heroes fight villains and win. MEH.

Savage Planet
Sets: Pretty neat, though the animal designs on the Heroes are good examples of overspecialized pieces. Witch Doctor looked interesting.
Story: This one also seemed interesting, with Witch Doctor as a former mentor turned power-mad. Again, it looked like some real possibility of character development for Stormer was at hand. Then Rocka came in and overshadowed everything. MEH.

Sets: Some of the villains were kind of weird as far as colors went, and Black Phantom looked more like a mideval jester than an actual threat, but the heroes looked fantastic, and I loved the return to the old helmets. This one I may have actually bought from, had I had the funds at the time.
Story: Actually pretty interesting. Seemed like we had elements of an overarching plot with Von Nebula and Black Phantom, but then Black Phantom had to go and open his mouth. Didn’t see the second wave episodes though, so maybe there was more to it.
Also, Cryoshell. Cryoshell is always good.

Brain Attack
Haven’t seen much of this one, but from what I have… UGH.

Invasion From Below
Sets: Inventive. Probably not for me, but I like how they were branching out, there.
Story: Not seen much of this, either, but what I have just seemed dull. MEH.

Overall, I think 1.0, Savage Planet, and Breakout were my favorites, with some real story potential that went thoroughly ignored. I actually remember writing a prospective outline for a rewrite of the 1.0 story, but I’ve since lost the notes and forgot most of it besides. :confused:
That being said, I actually would like to see Hero Factory return somewhere down the line, and hopefully would actually utilize the elements that made it so promising, once Bionicle (and Slizers? Maybe? I can dream, right?) has had its second run.


Could’ve sworn I’d already posted here. Oh well, prepare for a giant essay!

TLDR; it’s cool and was mismanaged

Hero Factory was, as many others have said, a theme which was misused, improperly managed, and never reached even a fraction of its full potential. I have a deep, personal investment in the theme as I spent years defending it from critics and following its progression with rapt attention, as I was curious to see what kind of legacy BIONICLE’s successor would carve out for itself.

In the end, however, Hero Factory’s legacy hasn’t really amounted to much more than CCBS and plenty of hilarious jokes (IT’S ROTOR!). I’ll do a year by year breakdown since that seems to be plenty popular here.


Storyline: HF pioneered the concept of a somewhat good quality, multi-episode Lego TV series, and did so with a decent amount of success. The show wasn’t awful by any means; a story DID exist, barebones as it was, characters were established, and seeds were planted for future storylines. It wasn’t great, but it left me optimistic for the future.

Sets: They were alright. It was the transition year, so they were basically a new wave of BIONICLE sets. I think the Heroes were a natural evolution from the Av-Matoran build and made some definite improvements, and the villains were all unique, interesting, and well built.

Media: Arguably HF’s best year of media, this year featured two defining traits of Hero Factory that should have remained in the years to come; the Call Center and Hero Factory FM. The Call Center was a fantastic way for kids to interact with the theme, and Hero Factory FM was a wonderfully self aware, hilarious, and absolutely fantastic piece of media that went away far too soon.


Storyline: Ordeal of Fire was far too short, but not inherently bad; it took itself more seriously than the initial four episodes did and it was alright, if very rushed. Savage Planet was fantastic, and told a very nice story with an interesting cast of characters, and a pretty cool villain.

Sets: This year pioneered CCBS, and with it came a lot of growing pains. The 2.0 series was average at best, but the 3.0 series brought some nice innovations to the formula, including several non-humanoid sets with varying degrees of complexity, and the single greatest and most complex set HF ever received, Witch Doctor.

Media: Fairly uneventful other than the shows. Hero Recon Team was introduced, which is another one of Hero Factory’s greatest attempts to originate, and it went away far too soon.


Storyline: Without a doubt Hero Factory’s best year story-wise, Breakout delivered on every front. Strides towards more serious, plot-driven storylines that featured continuity and legitimate stakes, character growth, plot twists, and the promise of greater things to come, 2012 was the pinnacle of what Hero Factory was able to achieve story-wise in its main media. Unfortunately, everything after it was downhill. To further complement this excellent year, it marked the beginning of Greg Farshtey’s Hero Factory book series, which are the best pieces of story content HF ever had the luck of receiving.

Sets: Also fantastic. Great strides were made to advance CCBS, every Hero character from the theme’s lifespan was present in one year, creative villains with actual names and motivations were prominent… it was excellent.

Media: To further add to the excellence of this year, Breakout, Hero Factory’s latest online game, rose to prominence. Featuring ingenious tie-ins with the sets, a plethora of levels, collectibles, replayability, and a surprising degree of character customization, Breakout was a giant leap forward despite its flaws.


Storyline: In a stunning display of ineptitude following the excellence of Breakout, Hero Factory decided to completely ignore the prior year’s cliffhanger and move forward to an entirely different plot thread, featuring a mysterious (and very random) villain unleashing a Brain Invasion upon Makuhero City. Small hints were made towards Surge’s character arc which was set up all the way back in 2010, but the payoff was unsatisfactory. The one saving grave for this year’s story were the books, written by Greg Farshtey, but those were swiftly canceled, and Greg was robbed of his opportunity to salvage HF’s storyline and the books were left with an unresolved cliffhanger and hints towards greater things to come.

Sets: 2013 brought some alright sets, but it was a very mixed bag. Some of the design choices for the Hero characters were very questionable, and the villains, while cool, featured very limiting Brains which restricted posability much like the Piraka spines of old. There was plenty of good to be had, but also plenty of bad.

Media: Atrocious. Aside from the show, which, to my knowledge, never even aired on TV and only saw a limited release on the internet, the theme featured a very lackluster follow-up to Breakout in the form of the Brain Attack game, which took away many of the interesting things that were present in Breakout.


Storyline: An incredibly awful finale. The storytelling quality went down in an unbelievable awful way, ignoring the prior two year’s established cliffhangers (and ending the series with a third) in favor of yet another subplot with an underground invasion of “Beasts.” Due to Ghost producing the special instead of Tinseltown Toons, all the voice actors were changed, and the personalities and character traits established over the years vanished with them. The characters did not even resemble their former selves.

Sets: The one saving grace to this year, 2014 had some outstanding sets due to the inclusion of minifigures. Unique builds were plentiful, and some of HF’s greatest sets came from this year.

Media: Virtually nothing except a lackluster online game, but at least it was better than Brain Attack. Similar to 2013, the entire storyline of the year was told within the first month, leaving the theme’s relevancy to slowly decline as the year went on.


The handling of Hero Factory was a complete travesty and will hopefully serve as a lesson to Lego in the years to come on how to properly handle a constraction theme. My personal belief is that the greatest mistakes they made are as follows:

  • Taking away what made the theme unique: The Call Center, Hero Factory FM, Recon Team… all of these things brought personality to the theme and gave it an identity.

  • Handicapping the storyline: While initially intended to be episodic in nature and feature self-contained story arcs, the theme tried to advance the quality of its storyline in 2012 and was halted at every turn. The books were canceled, cliffhangers weren’t followed up on, and the storyline was never allowed to progress. 2012 remains the year where the theme reached its highest point of quality.

  • Not enough promotion: The theme was virtually absent from Lego magazines and catalogs, as well as advertising in general, during the last two years of its run. The specials were halved in length, the quality of the games degraded, the books were canceled, and the theme was barely advertised… it’s no wonder it didn’t do that well.

Hero Factory is a theme that I’m deeply invested in, and while I’m incredibly glad that BIONICLE’s back, I can’t help but feel sorrow for HF. It was a theme that had to claw through the masses of enraged BIONICLE fans, who falsely believed that HF was to blame for its untimely demise. It had such potential to be a theme that was of interest to the masses, but was never allowed to be. It was cut short both as a theme which featured tongue-in-cheek and self referntial humor, as well as a theme which tried to tell a serious storyline with continuity and plot twists. In the end, it had an incredibly lackluster finale, and faded silently into obscurity.

It’s a shame. Let’s hope BIONICLE never shares a similar fate.



I did. And I can say for a fact that it made me an HF fan.

You have basically summed-up my thoughts. HF had great potential, and if it had built on the foundation laid by Breakout, I wouldn’t have objected to it continuing this year. That said, I agree, may Bionicle never share HF’s fate.


This sums up what I did because of LEGO:

Seriously! So much potential, and LEGO threw it in the trash!
Flips tables

I swear, if LEGO wastes Bionicle 2015’s potential, all of my faith in them will be gone.


Weren’t you that guy that repeatedly defended Hero Factory on the LEGO Message Boards?

I think he is. Is this a problem?

No, just seems like an awful case of contradiction.

Yes, and also the same person who aknowledged LEGO’s supreme idiocy when it came to HF’s potential.
“Uh hey, we have some really good potential right here.”
“Eh, just throw it out.”


Hi Mark! You might not recognize me, but you might if you click here :stuck_out_tongue:

I was really looking forward to seeing Bulk get some character development. :stuck_out_tongue: Shame it only happened off screen. :stuck_out_tongue: Also, Hey, Mark. :stuck_out_tongue:

Hi Mace and Macedonia (:P). And yeah, it would’ve been good to see some development with Bulk.

In the first series he was the dumbest on the team. Felling self-conscious about that, he studied and became smarter and by 3.0 was, I quote, “The smartest of all of (them)”. :stuck_out_tongue: The main story hardly reflected that at all. :stuck_out_tongue: Could have been an interesting character arc. :stuck_out_tongue: But nope, LEGO was too busy saying “ONG!!! LOOK! ROCKA ROCKA ROCKA!!!” :stuck_out_tongue:


It really does suck. :frowning:

BUT, LEGO has made a grave mistake. They’ve un copyrighted Hero Factory, giving me the perfect oppurtunity to publish my fanfics and make my MOCs real.

LEGO will facepalm for all eternity. :stuck_out_tongue:

1 Like


I don’t think that happened. :confused:

I checked the copyrights, and HF was not one of them.