• BIONICLE Canisters 3 - Ball joint Bionicle, the "Mask of Life" Era

    Compiled by Gus263. Updated 04 December 2009. Contains 10 sets.
    To Celebrate the 10th year of Bionicle products (and its end), I'll be doing my own classification for the Bionicle sets instead of the official sources, making it easier to see their history through the years.

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8904: Avak

12 reviews
Pieces
41
RRP
$9, £6.99
Instructions
Yes
Related sets
Included in 66158-1
Bricklist notes
An example of a Piraka set. The Piraka were the first one to included brand new torsos with glued ball joints, beginning a new era and a new way to build figures. It was meant to follow the Bionicle concept, but the differences are huge.

They had no gear function; instead of this, they followed the idea of launchers from 2005, but bringing that time the Zamor spheres (used for GBC and in a lot of other playsets, also in the NXT 2.0), with buildable launchers.

They also had light-up eyes and glow-in-the-dark teeth, very attractive pieces. And they aren't proportional, like the Toa Hordika, they have longer right arms. Their weapons were dual sided and included a lot of details, buit were used few times in other sets that succeeded them.

The spines of the Piraka are very characteristic, though they were all exclusive, except for Thok's, that was included in golden for the Irnakk set.
The set I chosen to show is Avak, known as the last brown canister set, he is actually in a reddish shade of brown, while he includes dark tan connectors. Another set, Thok, has very light bluish gray limbs. Those are really good rare colors, but once they are the only ones to have those, in few variety, it doesn't becomes that useful.
Our community
1342 own this set, 356 want it.

8730: Toa Hewkii

11 reviews
Pieces
62
RRP
$10, £7.99
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
An example of a Toa Inika set. The Toa Inika followed the concept of the Piraka but with brand new pieces.
- They had new bodies, feet, lower leg sections and armors.
- Their head was an all-new piece (never included in any set after them), connected to an axle, a simple balljoint and a sokcet.
- Their masks were all made with rubber, with lot of details, and just fit at the head.
- That time it was their weapons that included lights.
- Their zamor sphere received additions, to contain 4 spheres instead of one.

The set I chosen to represent his series is Hewkii, including a lot of gunmetal pieces (none of them are in the body structure except the lower legs, the others serves for armors/mask), bright light orange pieces (a color scheme that supposedly took out the place of brown) and also a new style of chains, more resistent than the ones which started with system.
Our community
1527 own this set, 376 want it.

8919: Mantax

17 reviews
Pieces
58
RRP
$9.99, £7.99
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
An example of a Barraki set.
At the time of the Barraki, after create molds for torsos with glued balljoints, consolidating the new "ball-joint based buildable action figure system", the designers used what they had already, making new vertents of this building. Then, all the Baraki are very characteristic while they have also different buildings.

What they have in common however is the lack of masks, with heads placed above pincers and translucent eye pieces to put in them.
And their launcher, the Squid launcher is not buildable anymore, and isn't good at shooting, either.

This set in specific, Mantax, has an inverted Inika body, with good use for one of the Rahkshi's chest section and also a Vahki lower body section. Alongside with two armors new at that time (used in carapar as chest armor, and in Mantax as shoulder armors), it is sure he has done well with a Manta Ray looking.
It is also interesting to note that he included pieces common with the Aqua raiders (released at the same time), such as a long tail, included in plenty of creatures from the recent playsets.

His new pieces were the small claws (used a lot nowadays) and his feet.
Our community
1400 own this set, 356 want it.

8921: Pridak

19 reviews
Pieces
47
RRP
$9.99, £7.99
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
Another example of a Barraki set. This one has very flexible arms and body.
It is interesting to see Toa Nuva legs used as his arms, as those pieces were first seen like 5 years before Pridak's release. His body consists basically of two Vahki lower body sections and a Hordika head in the structure (another one is used to support his face).
His almost exclusive blades are white mixed with a shade of red. The red parts are more flexible than the white.
His feet were new, and until now it has been used very few times. With a great playability and flexibility overall, he can shift into a shark like form, and his blades serves as the fin.
Our community
1514 own this set, 296 want it.

8916: Takadox

24 reviews
Pieces
62
RRP
$9.99, £7.99
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
Another example of a Barraki set. Just like Ehlek (the green Barraki) this lacks of some armors yet it has an interesting and simple use of a Technic liftarm as the body. Two Vahki lower body sections attach the limbs while another technic piece attach his head.
His exclusive blades works together with Piraka arms to give a pray mantis looking and there are glow-in-the-dark pieces, such as his face.
Our community
1579 own this set, 320 want it.

8910: Toa Kongu

19 reviews
Pieces
74
RRP
$9.99, £7.99
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
An example of a Toa Mahri set. The Toa Mahri, differently of the Barraki, re-used more the other pieces, as they were destined to be humanoid figures (the heroes). Most of them included new silver coloured weapons and many tubes, to induct they're underwater. As notable characteristics; Matoro has his face coming from the front of his body; Nuparu has a shield and some limited posability, Hahli has wings; Hewkii has very good blades, few armors and is exageratedly unproportional; Jaller follows his Inika building and the most interesting here is Kongu.
The green Toa Mahri has two Cordak Blasters (those giant shooting weapons which aren't that effective at shooting), and a new mold to the body. This is bulkier than the Inika or Piraka bodies and to attach the arms it is needed two hordika lower arm sections.
His head/eye/brain was the first one to be cut in half, as he has a technic/system piece simulating a breathing tank in his back. All in all, he is the most interesting of them, except for the fact he has no melee weapon.
Our community
1282 own this set, 437 want it.

8692: Vamprah

14 reviews
Pieces
49
RRP
$12.99, £7.79
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
An example of a Phantoka set. The toa Phantoka had all re-used parts except for the orange one, that included propellers. The Makuta were also very repetitive except for their own design and for the innovation at time, their hollow bodies.
The set I chose to represent those Makuta was Vamprah. A single piece (the one with the claws) is placed in the black body and the Tridax pod (that are two halves) is placed in its center. By pulling the back part of the claw piece, the Tridax pod fall and release it's rubber shadow leeches. Not the most effective weapon, but different of the other ones. Vamprah uses original Gali's hooks and four wings. Those seems to be bad colored, as one has blue and other, gunmetal, instead of black (or even blue). He has practically no legs, but those two blades never were seen colored in dark blue after it.
Our community
1122 own this set, 377 want it.

8696: Bitil

7 reviews
Pieces
54
RRP
$12.99, £7.79
Instructions
Yes
Related sets
Included in 66274-1
Bricklist notes
An example of a Mistika set. The Toa Mistika still followed the humanoid padrons like their predecessors, the Phantoka. The Makuta, however, had some innovations.
Gorast, the green Makuta, has four arms, however, those aren't bendable, as they are Av-Matoran's. Krika has four paws, not bendable, also. His body is an armored tridax pod launcher. One of the most interesting here is Bitil, that doesn't have any matoran leg/arm. However, he lacks in armor besides those claws and has an Av-Matoran body. His wings are good additions, and his blades, very well designed, by far the largest of the Mistika line.
The Nynrah ghost blaster is based in the air contained in a squeeze-like piece and its base is very large. It has a efficient shot, but it is already too large and is not fun at all.
Our community
898 own this set, 476 want it.

8978: Skrall

25 reviews
Pieces
50
RRP
$12.99, £8.79
Instructions
Yes
Bricklist notes
An example of a Glatorian set. The first wave of the Glatorian included different types of building and marked the return of some not so neutral colors. Both Skrall and Strakk have inverted Inika bodies. Vorox has a tail and a variety of tan pieces. Gresh has some lime pieces and Tarix has few blue pieces. Malum has also some good recolors.
Skrall is the most interesting here because he brought three new blades and also a saw blade shield, very well designed (without to mention the original red connectors). It's been a while since a figure with both a weapon and a shield wasn't released, mostly because the "need" of a firing weapon has been priorizated over the inclusion of melee weapons. Glatorians' shooting weapon is very versatile, the Thornax Launcher keep being used nowadays in different Lego themes as well.
The marks of the Glatorian were the unproportional hands and head. While the hands increased, the head diminished and kept as one solid translucent piece, instead of two or three pieces. Instead of masks, fitting in the front of the head, they have helmets. But they were far to be proportional.
Our community
1131 own this set, 391 want it.

8987: Kiina

9 reviews
Pieces
43
RRP
$12.99, £8.99
Instructions
Yes
Related sets
Included in 66334-1
Bricklist notes
An example of a Glatorian Legends set. By far the most different of them, Kiina brings more than the common new pieces. The building of her torso is unique, using two Hordika heads and some Technic pieces on the back, with a limb in the frontal part. This make-a-torso technique is really good and never was seen before her.
The other Glatorian Legend sets followed the concept of their predecessors, and few included a new connector piece, like Kiina's.
However, her proportions are off, like most of the other sets from the Balljoint era.
Our community
822 own this set, 340 want it.