User:Mask Maker

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Mask Maker
User
Status
BS01 Status Observing
Usual Online Time Afternoons, evenings, the rare early morning
BZP Name Takuna
BZP Status S&T, and occasionally the Library
Personal
Age 20
Gender Dude
Nationality American
Userboxes


Hello, everyone. I’ve been around more or less since 2006, although I haven’t always been an active editor. I’ve been feeling kind of in a BIONICLE mood for the past couple of months, so I guess I’ll go ahead and make myself a userpage.

User History

Pre-BS01

I’m one of those old-school fans who has been around since the beginning. I saw the advertisement on the back of the LEGO magazine of Tahu surfing on lava, and I was hooked. (Yeah, you know what ad I’m talking about. The one with the little picture of Vakama attached to the bottom?) Me and my brothers kept up on all the canister sets until 2004, and we voraciously gobbled up the comics that were coming out. I was especially enthralled with the Kanohi Masks, and I’ve always been a huge fan of any franchise that involves the classical Elements. So, BIONICLE was pretty much two amazing things done with LEGOs!

However, during 2005, I fell away from the franchise. I had been introduced to the Star Wars Expanded Universe in 2003, and two years later, I was in full-fledged collection mode. I was so busy gobbling up Star Wars books that I barely had time to follow the less-than-amazing BIONICLE storyline. And that was before my brothers and I started to get pretty hardcore into the Star Wars Roleplaying Game. And then, to top it off, a new friend I met introduced me to the Wheel of Time series, which is another very monster when it comes to time. So, yeah, I was way too busy with other interests to pursue BIONICLE.

Active in BS01

But then, in summer 2006, I found some free time. I was living with my parents in Mexico, so I wasn’t able to get a job, so I decided to catch up on BIONICLE. That’s when I found BS01 and BZPower, and I must confess, I was pretty pumped. I had always made up my own BIONICLE stories, and I started to write them and post them on BZP. (I would strongly recommend leaving them be. Although I still think that the ideas I had were pretty good, I couldn’t write for anything, and I contradicted canon all over the place.) I got pretty involved in BS01, too, back when there were still holes that editors could work on to fill. I managed to accrue enough edits to get on the CVU nav, the second-to-last person to ever do so. (The last person to ever get on the CVU nav was Shine. I’ve been here longer than one of our General Managers. Man, I feel old.)

Decline

And then came the downtime. Believe it or not, I checked, every single day, whether or not BS01 was back. Yeah, I really liked this place. When it finally came back, I struggled to get my edit count back up. I had had a hard enough time before the crash, and now it seemed there was less and less I could contribute.

And then there was the second downtime. So, now I’ve got, like no edits. It’s kinda funny. But even though I don’t edit, I still check here every day I can. It’s a great place for storyline reference, but as far as it goes as a community... well, more on that later.

Present

Anyways, now I’m back. I enrolled as a freshman in a new college (don’t ask why I’m two years behind the rest of my class; it’s a very long story, but suffice to say that I knowingly took two years of college that didn’t count for any official credit), and my schedule really freed up so I found myself with more time. Granted, this is as a freshman; things’ll heat up, maybe as soon as next semester, but I’ll try and get in as much activity as I can.

So, right now, I have a few purposes I’d like to work towards while I’m active in the BIONICLE fanbase:

  • Get some stories written. I’ve got a few songfics posted in Short Stories, a few more songfics I’m working on, one short epic that’s written but still needs some work, and a few big epics that are churning around on my computer. I’d like to make some real headway into these, getting some of them published. I like thinking up stories, but I really need to work on my writing ability.
  • Contribute to the BSS. It’s a pretty amazing thing we’ve got going there: we can send our ideas to a group of fellow fans and possibly get it canonized. I’ve thrown a couple of thoughts there way that they’ve rejected, but there is one more that I won’t go into specifics. I’ve suggested it to them and received a favorable response, but it’s going to take a lot of work on their part before it becomes a reality.
  • Find a place to put my Masks and Elements. I have a Periodic Table of Elements that I had here on my userpage for a while (If you want to see it, check my revision history) that introduces a few new Elements, like Sand, Kinetics, and Atomics. I also have a System of Kanohi that organizes the known Kanohi by power level and complexity that I haven’t posted anywhere, and that includes a number of Kanohi that I thought up or were inspired by other fictional Kanohi. I’d like to find somewhere to publish these theories as reference material for myself and others; which brings me to my last point.
  • Kopeke’s Guide to the Matoran Race. This is an idea I had recently to coalesce some of my other theories. It would be a reference material, written from Kopeke’s perspective, about the Matoran. It would include sections on Elements (Periodic Table), Masks (System of Kanohi), Geography (Tied into my BSS suggestion), and perhaps a brief history of the Matoran, including a timeline of Toa. It’s quite an undertaking, especially for something that doesn’t serve much of a purpose, but in the small amount of work I’ve done on it, I’ve found that I write reference material much easier than stories. So, it’d probably the easiest thing for me to write. But I’d also like it to be filled with images, like a true BIONICLE Guide, and that’s an issue. I can barely draw stick figures. So, it’s not really feasible unless I can find someone who’s good at drawing and doesn’t mind doing a lot of sketches for it. If you’re interested, PM me, and maybe we can get the ball rolling on this thing.
  • BZP Blog. I’ve thought that a blog would be a good place to post all of my ideas in little segments. Do a post about the Periodic Table, a post for each new Element, a few posts about Masks, a few posts about the different sets of stories I have planned, and so on. So, I’m contemplating getting a PMship for a year and making the most of the blog part.

Alter-Ego

I actually have had two alter-egos. I had epics planned for both of them, but I only ever got around to working on one of them. I am currently building an epic that features both of them.

Takuna

My original alter-ego was Takuna, a Le-Matoran from Metru Nui who was transformed into a Toa of Plasma. He possessed nearly every Kanohi mask; his tool was a Kanohi Backpack, which let him carry all of them and utilize more than one at a time. His backstory has quite a few canon discrepancies in it, and I am currently rewriting it. He was the main character of my first epic, Mask Maker, and the reimagined Takuna features prominently in a new epic I am working on. I have a Takuna MOC sitting on my desk that I threw together over Fall Break, when I went home and found all my old sets. He only wears a Hau, but wields the Dual Scythe, a tool that a few Toa in Mask Maker used.

Arban

My second alter-ego was Arban, a Toa of Fire. Arban is a character of mine that exists in a number of different universes, including the Star Wars Roleplaying game and a custom Wheel of Time Roleplaying game my friends and I designed. Every Arban shares a few core details: a dead wife, Fire/Telekinetic abilities, throwing knives, and a laid-back, sarcastic attitude. Toa Arban wore a Matatu and had a seemingly-infinite number of throwing knives for his Toa tools. He was to feature in an epic that I never got around to writing, but I’ve re-used his character almost wholesale in the epic I mentioned above.

Philosophy

So, believe it or not, I like to think things through, and there are a few long-winded ideas I’ve had about BS01 and why things are the way they are.

Outfit Philosophy

For a while, my userpage was just a posting of my explanation of the three different types of BS01 editors, and how a shift in control from one type to the other discourages some users, such as myself, from editing actively. I might get around to putting it up here, but for now, you can look through my userpage history.

Wiki Philosophy

What’s the coolest thing about a wiki? The fact that anybody can edit it, of course. That’s the greatest advantage of a wiki; taking advantage of collective knowledge to come closer and closer to putting every piece of information in a collective database.

Here at BS01, the unthinkable happened: we finished it. BIONICLE has a pretty small information base. Let’s face it, we’ve only had 10 years, with only three main media for the storyline: comics, novels, and web. So, there’s not anywhere near as much out there as, say Star Wars. And, unlike many other wikis about smaller subjects, we have a large, active group of members. I mean, we’ve got more staff than most comparatively-sized wikis have regular editors. So, we’ve managed to complete the ultimate BIONICLE storyline repository. More power to us.

But now, we have nothing left to work on. In between frantic edits when new serials come out, all we can do is nitpick over trivialities. I mean, really? An AfD page is normal, but an AfC page? And each has a separate Staff vote to confirm the popular vote? Really? And then everybody gets all worked up over those little things and gets bitter with each other. Really, guys? We’re fighting over what colors should be used on Matoran templates?

So, now, we’ve got all these people who want to make a difference, but nowhere that they can leave their mark. Whenever they try, their edits get reverted for not being notable. And the staff unknowingly discourages them from going to another BIONICLE fansite to contribute; the way they look down on other BIONICLE wikis and forums, not allowing links to them, leads people to hate the other sites without taking the time to get to know them, and they feel that anyone who goes there is a traitor to BS01.

Ideas

So, these philosophies have lead to a few practical ideas of mine. First, I thought that we needed to cut down on the staff some. But, they did that for us. Now, I don’t mean this in a bad way, but on a site where no new information comes to us for weeks at a time, did we really need, like fifteen staffers?

I also think that it would be a good idea for BS01 to strike a deal with other aspiring BIONICLE wikis. For those who want to do more for a wiki, recommend that they go check out other, struggling BIONICLE fansites where their contributions would be much more needed. That would cut down on a lot of the trivial, back-and-forth stuff, while also reducing the high-minded appearance that comes across to other sites. (It’s there, guys. ‘Look at us, we’re BS01, we’re the best BIONICLE resource, we don’t let our members link to your site.’ I don’t blame ‘em; BS01 has gotten pretty uptight, as I say in my outfit philosophy.)

Now, the whole EM news thing was a smart move on Swert’s part, but I think he should take it one step further, and create a whole section of BS01for the EM wiki. Now, I’m pretty sure that that’s covered somewhere else, but I think that it would be a great outlet for all of BS01’s pent-up energy. I mean, at the very least, they could put a few links for it up in the Community Portal or Main Page, or somewhere that would raise awareness of the EM.

Canon Expansion

Now, I’m a huge proponent of increasing the amount of BIONICLE canon that BS01 and BIONICLE produce. We’ve got Greg’s ear; it’s a pretty sick situation, to tell the truth. We should take advantage of what time we have to secure BS01 and BZPower as the flagship of BIONICLE canon while we still have Greg, so that, even after the serials wrap up, we’ll still be able to keep the BIONICLE canon from stagnating.

So, I’ll just list a few of my ideas for a fan-run future for BIONICLE.

  • Post-Reformation Stories. I doubt Greg’s going to be able to do all that much with the year, year and a half he has left. He’ll set up some interesting situations, but there will still be all kinds of room to introduce some pretty major stuff. I mean, it’s not like writing contests for backstories; we can do whatever we want with the characters and story, as long as we can find some way to get approval. And then I think that the whole theme of unifying the Matoran Universe cultures together on a level we’ve only seen in The Kingdom, and then their interaction with the Spherus Magna races.
  • Character Backstories. But we mustn’t neglect the gold mine that is the unexplored BIONICLE history. There are still all kinds of stories we can tell, and the map of the Matoran Universe has something like two dozen islands that we have no information on. There are a lot of things that we can do with pre-existing characters; this idea would involve pretty much more of the same, with more short story and artwork/MOC contests.
  • Author Commissions. The downside to the contests we have now is their scope. You don’t have very much space to build characters and a story; you’ve basically got to jump straight into the action and maybe give a little bit follow-up once you’re done. I think that it’d be great for a few authors to apply/be commissioned for writing some larger stories; novel-sized stuff. They would be thoroughly checked and proofread by the BSS or whoever will be in charge of the storyline, and the authors would be screened very well before they’d be offered a chance to write a story. But, if we could work it successfully, we’d be giving the fanbase new BIONICLE novel-sized stories! Oh my goodness!
  • New Names. Once 2012 rolls around, LEGO won’t be involved with the storyline at all; so if, like I suggested above, we could get a group of fans on BZP in charge of it, then we might be able to swing for some new names outside of LEGO’s involvement. That way, we’d be able to write stories that we can’t now because of a lack of names. We’d be able to write about Jovan’s team, Lesovikk’s team, the Toa Mangai, other Makuta, expand minor species and islands into full-fledged entities... sky’s the limit, and it would be an excellent complement to my commissioned stories idea.

So, yeah, those are my aspirations for what the BIONICLE storyline could be. I just need to find a way to make it a reality...

Theories

Well, I've had a number of theories, both successful and unsuccessful. I'll just go ahead and put them here.

  • Icarax (Confirmed) – Back in 2007, when we were getting snippets on another Makuta, I put all the pieces together to develop a good picture of Icarax. I got bonesiii’s Theory Award, which I’m still pretty proud of, and eventually it got Greg to loosen up on some Icarax information. That was my only one that had big success.
  • Matoran Numerals (Rejected by BSS) – So, looking at the Matoran numbers, there’s room for two more after nine. I suggested to the BSS that the Matoran number system is base 12, and they said that, even though it made sense, it would require too much retconning to implement it. I mean, really? The Matoran language is a programming language, but we can’t have base 12 numbers? Both of them would operate from the same principle: things have been “translated” to English, and aren’t the actual words/letters/numbers that the Matoran are using. So, I’ll have to rehash this at a later date.
  • Toa Mangai – Not as much a theory as an idea, but remember back when name for the Toa Mangai was canonized and everyone went crazy trying to use other names from Mata Nui for other Toa Mangai? I thought of a few more good ideas for the rest of the team:
    • Kanae, Motara, and Tiro would all be great names. I’d go for Kanae being a Toa of Air, Motara being a Toa of Iron, and Tiro being a Toa of Ice.
    • The Three Brothers Bridge is named after three Toa of Ice who were from the same island. Tiro would not be included; these would be the other three.
    • And that would give us ten Toa: Lhikan, Nidhiki, Tuyet, Naho, Kanae, Motara, Tiro, and three more Toa of Ice. That would leave one more, possibly for the Kakama-wearing Toa.
  • Sundial Voice – We never found out who the telepathic voice was that told Lewa to get the sundial from the Onu-Wahi mine, did we? I think it was Krakua. It would fit in well with his position as a liason of the Order of Mata Nui, and his Suletu would let him pull that off.
  • Av-Matoran – So, this one’s touching on the Matoran reproduction system. I think that it utilizes the Av-Matoran population, even to this day. Remember, back in 2008, we were told that if all the Av-Matoran were converted to Shadow Matoran, something “terrible” would happen, beyond just the whole race being gone. However, Greg said that he couldn’t tell us what it would be. Even more recently, he hasn’t gone into detail whenever people ask him about it. I think it’s connected to something else he can’t discuss: where new Matoran come from. I think that, whatever method they come about from, it uses the Av-Matoran as living templates from which new Matoran are created. So, if all the Av-Matoran were gone, there would be no new Matoran coming into being, which would doom the Matoran race to a slow, but inevitable, death.

Are you still reading this?

Oh my goodness, what a large, uninterrupted block of text. I need some images. Again, if you're an artist who feels like tackling a big project, PM me. Or even if you want to draw a few without committing to anything, PM me anyways. I could use a few to break up the book that is my userpage.