Bionicle Heroes


Bionicle Heroes

Infobox VG |title = Bionicle Heroes


developer = TT Games
Amaze Entertainment
publisher = Eidos Interactive
designer =
engine =
version =
released = flagicon|USA November 14, 2006 (PS2, Xbox 360, GameCube, DS, GBA, PC); April 24, 2007 (Wii)
flagicon|EU November 24, 2006 (PS2, Xbox 360, GBA, PC); January 12, 2007 (DS); May 25, 2007 (Wii)
flagicon|AUS December 1, 2006 (PS2, Xbox 360, GBA, PC); March 2, 2007 (DS)
flagicon|JPN January 18, 2007 (PS2); March 15, 2007 (DS)
genre = Third-person shooter
modes = Single Player
ratings = ESRB: E10+ (Everyone 10)
ESRB: T (Teen) (Nintendo DS)
PEGI: 7+
platforms = Windows, GameCube, Wii, Nintendo DS, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation 2, Xbox 360
media =
requirements =
input =

"Bionicle Heroes" is a 3D video game of the third-person shooter genre, based on Lego popular Bionicle franchise. It was released in November 2006 by TT Games on all then-current console systems (PlayStation 2, Xbox 360, and Nintendo GameCube), PC, and Nintendo's handhelds (Game Boy Advance and Nintendo DS); a Nintendo Wii version was later released in April 2007. The game stars Bionicle's 2006 feature characters, the Toa Inika and the Piraka. Players must destroy enemies, solve puzzles in order to progress further, and throughout the game, maximize their individual special powers (for example: the ability to activate certain objects, construct vehicles and platforms, or even binocular vision) and gain better and deadlier weapons.

While the game is loosely based on the first third of the "Bionicle Legends" story arc, it is non-canonical and features several characters from previous arcs in the franchise.

The Nintendo DS version of "Bionicle Heroes" is in the first-person perspective instead of third-person, and is the first LEGO game to be rated T for Teen. The Game Boy Advance version is also vastly different, having a top-down perspective instead of over the character's shoulder.

Gameplay

Console version

Players control an anonymous hero out to stop the evil Piraka, who have used the power of the Mask of Life to transform the wildlife of the island of Voya Nui into aggressive, evil creatures. The hero is able to wear the masks of the Toa Inika in order to take on their appearances and powers. Players can switch between any collected masks at will, but if they run out of health the current mask is lost and a new one must be found before the character can become that Toa again. Collecting a mask also restores health, even if it is one the character already has.

During gameplay, players collect Lego pieces with different point values. Collecting enough points fills a meter and activates "Hero Mode", turning the character golden and giving invincibility as well as an offensive boost. After completing a level, points collected can also be used to purchase items and upgrades from the in-game Lego Shop. Players are able to upgrade weapons throughout the game, starting with ones resembling the Toa Mata's tools before upgrading to the Toa Metru's tools and finally the Toa Inika's tools; armor and special abilities can also be upgraded.

Throughout each level are several Lego "constractions" (a combination of the words "construction" and "action") that can be assembled. Two kinds that must be activated to proceed are normal constractions activated by Toa Hewkii and golden constractions that can be activated by anyone in Hero Mode, though doing so causes Hero Mode to end and more points must be collected before it can be entered again. Also found are character-specific constractions that provide bonuses when activated.

Scattered throughout the levels are several canisters that give bonuses when collected: collecting all of the silver canisters in a level unlocks a common enemy for viewing between levels, while each gold canister found unlocks a collectible item for viewing. Each regular level includes five silver canisters and four gold canisters, and Piraka levels include four gold canisters apiece. Boss enemies are also unlocked for viewing after they have been defeated.

There are 25 levels and 19 bosses (seven of which are the Piraka, including Vezon) in total. In addition to the levels and viewable collectibles, players can also explore a bonus area called Piraka Playground, where the Piraka can be seen walking around after you defeat them in the main levels. Players can purchase additional items for Piraka Playground from the Shop and watch the Piraka use them. There are also 3 bonus levels available for purchase, which are accessed through Piraka Playground.

DS version

The DS version has 37 levels and 6 bosses (the Piraka, not including Vezon). The 37 levels are divided among 7 regions: five levels for each of the six Piraka regions, and seven levels in the final region: "Makuta's Domain". In the last of these seven levels, "Final Showdown", the player must battle all six Piraka.

When the player loses all their health, they do not lose a mask as you would in the console version, but some of the Lego pieces the player has collected. Instead of an in-game Lego Shop, collected Lego pieces are used in conjunction with runes (which are used to spell out relevant words) in order to unlock one of 12 bonuses, which can affect gameplay in unique ways. These bonuses can be switched on or off once unlocked.

Characters

Playable

The Toa Inika:
*Toa Jaller: Toa Jaller can walk over lava, and after upgrading he can burn down passage-blocking vines. His Fireblast weapons are rapid-fire and are good at short- to mid-range, but spread out and become inaccurate at long range. Jaller's weapons include Toa Tahu's Fire Sword, Toa Vakama's Launcher, and his own Energized Flame Sword.
*Toa Nuparu: Toa Nuparu is the slowest Toa but is quite powerful. He can climb certain walls and cliff faces, and after upgrading can dig up treasures. His Earthburst weapons fire grenade-like energy balls with a large blast radius that are slow to reload, but can be launched around corners and detonated manually. Nuparu's weapons include Toa Onua's Claw, Toa Whenua's Earthshock Drill, and his own Laser Drill.
*Toa Hahli: Toa Hahli can cross streams and rivers, and after upgrading can manipulate blue water-based constractions. She has medium speed, but is stronger and faster when in water. Her long-range Watershock weapons don't have as much power, but as long as they are firing they cause steady damage. Hahli's weapons include Toa Gali's Hook, Toa Nokama's Hydro Blade, and her own Laser Harpoon.
*Toa Hewkii: Toa Hewkii can assemble normal constractions from the various LEGO pieces found scattered in each level, and can upgrade this to the ability to collapse certain walls. Like Nuparu, he is slow but very strong. His Stonesmash weapons act like rocket launchers, and are slow to reload but have a large blast radius. Hewkii's weapons include the "Po-Koro" (based on Toa Pohatu's hands), Toa Onewa's Proto Pitons, and his own Laser Axe.
*Toa Kongu: Toa Kongu is the second-fastest toa(Jaller's the fastest). Kongu can leap certain gaps marked by green landing pads, and can gain the ability to use green wind-based constractions. He has medium strength. His Airshot weapons are of medium strength, but grow weaker over long distances, as they possess a function similar to that of a shotgun. Kongu's weapons include Toa Lewa's Air Axe, Toa Matau's Aero Slicer, and his own Laser Crossbow.
*Toa Matoro: Toa Matoro has the ability to zoom in towards targets, and some faraway white targets require the closeup view; he can also upgrade his ability to freeze water in places to make pathways. He is one of the slowest among the Toa, but has one of the strongest weapons available, able to kill some enemies in one hit. Toa Matoro's Icecrack weapons are similar to sniper rifles, with the ability to shoot lethal blasts at the expense of recharge time. Matoro's weapons include Toa Kopaka's Ice Sword, Toa Nuju's Crystal Spike, and his own Energized Ice Sword.

In console versions of the game, each Piraka can also be played after they are defeated, though only in their own regions (for example, Vezok can only be played in the "Vezok's Coastline" levels); and they can activate special Piraka constractions. Once the game is completed, the individual Piraka are replaced by Vezon, who can activate not only Piraka constractions but black constractions found in each level.

In the Game Boy Advance version of the game, the six Toa Mata are playable instead of the Piraka, in both their original and transformed Toa Nuva incarnations. Later on, if you go back you can find the Toa Inika Masks and play as the Toa Inika.

Non-playable

Common enemies, which are encountered in each level, include each of the six breeds of Bohrok, Visorak, and Vahki. If the player collects all of the silver canisters in a level, they unlock one of the breeds of a common enemy, which can be viewed between levels.

In addition to the seven Piraka, there are 12 bosses which are unlocked for viewing after they are defeated: each of the six Rahkshi (Guurahk, Korahk, Lerahk, Panrahk, Turahk, and Vorahk), Roodaka, Sidorak, Nidhiki, Krekka, Brutaka, and Axonn. However, in the story-line Axonn is an ally of the Toa Inika.

Players also encounter Balta, a Matoran who lives on Voya Nui. In the game, he speaks in the introductory movie and runs the Shop where the player can purchase items and upgrades. He has Piruk's claws as hands in the intro, but in the upgrade shop, he is seen with his katanas.

Reception


At its release in November 2006, "Bionicle Heroes" was mostly overshadowed by higher-profile releases; specifically the launches of the PlayStation 3 and Wii consoles later that week. Nearly all reviews noted the similarity to TT Games' previous Lego Star Wars games - several suggested that "Heroes" was perhaps "too" similar, and having two such games released within a couple months of each other was tiresome ("" had been released the previous September).

Nintendo Power noted that the game "doesn't feel very LEGO-ish; block-building aspects seldom come into play, and the scenery is only rarely reminiscent of LEGO pieces." (However, this is entirely consistent with the Bionicle universe as depicted in other media, and they are most likely not well-versed in the special Technic pieces used in the Bionicle line.) GameSpot blamed Hero Mode for making the game repetitive: "By being even remotely selective with how you pick up Lego pieces, you'll be invincible a good two-thirds to three-fourths of the game, which means that nearly every situation before a boss battle is utterly trivialized." Another common point in several reviews was that the game lacked a real story.

As of December 2006, the XBox 360 version of "Bionicle Heroes" has been the subject of the most reviews according to [http://www.gamerankings.com GameRankings.com] , and has an average rating of 60%.

Though reviewed less than the console versions, both the Nintendo DS and Game Boy Advance scored quite well in comparison, with reviews around 70 to 80%. The DS version of the game is considered a very competent first-person shooter, with responsive (though not quite perfect) controls and fast, smooth visuals; several reviews stated that it holds up well to the critically acclaimed "Metroid Prime Hunters". However, one major drawback is its lack of online play. The Game Boy Advance version was reviewed only twice, but both reviews agree that the game's nonstop, relentless shooting is shallow though very entertaining; both also praised the game's musical score.

Development

When creating many of the 100 collectible bonus items in the game, producers turned to the [http://www.bzpower.com BZPower] fan community for help. A sample of suggested items can be found [http://www.brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?f=177214 here] . [http://www.bzpower.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=222516&st=570 Official Bionicle Heroes Topic p. 20] at [http://www.bzpower.com BZPower] forums, post #594

References


* [http://www.bzpower.com/story.php?ID=2903 Visiting the World of Bionicle Heroes] , BZPower. Published Aug. 28, 2006.
* [http://www.bzpower.com/Imaging/stories/BHeroes_interview1.mov Bionicle Heroes Video Interview, Pt. 1] , BZPower. Published Oct. 14, 2006.
* [http://www.bzpower.com/story.php?ID=2973 Bionicle Heroes Dev Team Q&A] , BZPower. Published Oct. 16, 2006.
* [http://www.maskofdestiny.com/article2.asp?i=100891 Q&A from T.T. Games] , Mask of Destiny. Published Oct. 18, 2006.

External links

* [http://www.bionicleheroes.com Official site]
* Wii Resource Centre: [http://home.btconnect.com/hgi/nintendo-ds/wii-bionicle-heroes.html Wii: Bionicle Heroes]


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