The Glatorian are a race native to Spherus Magna. Due to their greater speed and strength than the Agori, they were often employed as warriors. This race fought as soldiers in the Core War; after the Shattering, those stranded on Bara Magna began fighting each other in arenas in order to avoid war. The defeat of the Skrall saw the Glatorian abandoning the arena match system, and uniting to become a defense force for the newly formed Mega-Village. This was short-lived, as the Mega-Village was abandoned to bring about the Reformation of Spherus Magna. The Glatorian now live on Spherus Magna once more.
The Glatorian were originally the warriors of Spherus Magna. Six members of the main species, as well as one of the Skrall species, were eventually chosen by the Great Beings to lead the tribes. They were granted Elemental Powers and transformed into the Element Lords.
The Element Lords eventually declared war on one another, seeking to gain control over a mysterious silver liquid that had appeared on the planet. The fighters were conscripted into armies, and began acting as soldiers. The Great Beings chose two warriors as pilots and placed them in their creation, the Matoran Universe, within its Core Processor. During the war, the Shattering struck the planet, splintering it into several pieces. A large number of the warriors were on Bara Magna when it occurred, and were trapped there as a result.
To cope with the drastic change, a new social system based on Arena Matches was developed to avoid a global war. Though many of the warriors were initially opposed to the new system, veterans Certavus, Tarix and Ackar advocated for the peace that it would bring, and eventually convinced everyone that it was for the best. The new system changed their duties, and they began to be hired by the tribes for different tasks. Primarily, Glatorian were sent to fight each other whenever there was a dispute over resources, though they would also be hired to protect a village, guard trade caravans, and search for resources. Glatorian began fighting in arenas in order to promote the system, avoiding major scale wars.
Though they were not restricted as to what tribe they could fight for, most Glatorian stayed with the tribe they fought for and rarely changed sides. Several members of the species chose not to be warriors, and retreated to the wastelands, unable to gain food or shelter from the villages.
A yearly competition known as the Great Tournament was eventually set up, in order for the Glatorian to prove their abilities to the entire planet. The victor was given the right to claim more resources, as well as the right to demand higher pay for their services.
The Skrall, a related species of warriors, joined the system as Glatorian after they relocated to Roxtus, under the direction of their leader, Tuma. The Skrall quickly earned a reputation as nasty fighters, and they were undefeated in arena matches.
During the latest Great Tournament, the Arena Magna was attacked by the Skrall. The Glatorian fought back, but were overwhelmed by the ferocious army. Many Glatorian were killed in the conflict, and the survivors fled the arena. Several of them reunited, and began to plan a counter strike against the Skrall.
Despite the Skrall abandoning the Glatorian system, Arena Matches continued to occur. Ackar, Prime Glatorian of the Fire Tribe, eventually discovered that the Skrall had allied with the Bone Hunters, and traveled to Tesara with Gresh, Kiina, and the newcomer Mata Nui, in order to inform the Agori and Glatorian what had happened. When the residents of Bara Magna had learned of what had occurred, they agreed with Ackar's plan to unite the villages. The Glatorian traveled to Roxtus, where they battled the Skrall, ultimately defeating the Rock Tribe. The warriors retained the title of "Glatorian" and began serving the united village as a defense force. Ackar was named as leader of the force by Mata Nui. Several Glatorian began accompanying Mata Nui on his quest to the Valley of the Maze, but later returned.
The newly formed defense force was soon called upon to defend their city, and battled the Agori slaver Sahmad, defeating him.
The Glatorian and Agori inhabitants later migrated to some caves outside the Mega-Village after Mata Nui requested to use the city, now revealed as an old prototype robot, to defend Bara Magna from Teridax.
The traitorous Makuta soon arrived on Bara Magna in Mata Nui's original robot body, intending to kill him. During the confrontation, Teridax lifted the cave shelters using his control over gravity and threatened to release it on top of the beings. Mata Nui quickly destroyed the hovering mountain above his friends, causing the Glatorian to plan a retaliation against Teridax.
As Mata Nui fought Teridax, the Glatorian attempted to assist him from down below, firing Thornax in a futile attempt to puncture the armor of the Matoran Universe. Teridax noticed the Glatorian, and released various Rahkshi (including Rahkshi of Heat Vision and Rahkshi of Quick Healing, among others) and Skakdi upon them through a door at the base of his foot. The Rahkshi and Skakdi began attacking the Glatorian, killing some. Some bands of Skrall noticed the conflict and attacked, seeking revenge on the Agori and Glatorian. The Glatorian soon received help from Toa emerging from the Matoran Universe.
Eventually, the Golden Armor was used to destroy the Rahkshi and a fragment of Aqua Magna hit Teridax, killing him. Most Skakdi and Skrall fled or surrendered, and those who did not were defeated. The Toa and Matoran came to live with the Agori and Glatorian on the newly reformed Spherus Magna.
After their planet was healed in this reality, the Glatorian lived with the Matoran Universe inhabitants, and were aided by the Toa in doing daily tasks.
Abilities and Traits
Each Glatorian has varying physical strength, tactics, weaponry and personal physical capabilities. A Glatorian's body is made up of largely organic tissues, but also contains varying amounts of permanent mechanical implants, such as implants that increase muscle endurance or agility. All Glatorian have a metallic bone structure.
Mata Nui later gave five of the current Glatorian elemental powers using the Ignika.
Glatorian are mammalian and are capable of biological reproduction.
Glatorian carry a myriad of tools, which they used in their fights. All Glatorian are also given Thornax Launchers, which launch the Thornax fruit. Each fighter wears a unique helmet, which they usually keep on due to the savage nature of their environment. Glatorian bear armor in the colors of their tribe, signifying their employers.
Tribes on Bara Magna could only afford to retain several Glatorian on permanent payroll, though they kept a number of trainee Glatorian that would be in the process of learning how to fight. One of the employed Glatorian was chosen as the Prime Glatorian of the village, and usually fought in matches of higher importance, whereas the Second Glatorian typically fought matches of lesser importance. Glatorian could also choose not to be Prime or Second Glatorian, and instead pilot vehicles in arena combat. The Skrall, who were not paid for their services, designated many of their warrior class as Glatorian.
The term "Glatorian" was kept in place after the abandonment of the Arena Match system to refer to the defenders of the Mega-Village.
- Ackar - Prime Glatorian of Vulcanus
- Certavus (deceased) - Once the prime Glatorian of Iconox, Certavus eventually died due to natural causes
- Gelu - Temporarily retired, rejoined after the Battle of Roxtus
- Gresh - The Second Glatorian of Tesara
- Kiina - Second Glatorian of Tajun, and one of the few successful female Glatorian.
- Perditus - A Glatorian in the service of the Fire Tribe, and pilot of the Thornatus V9
- Tarix - Prime Glatorian for the village of Tajun
- Vastus - Prime Glatorian of the Jungle Tribe
- Two rookie Glatorian of the Fire Tribe that were killed by Bone Hunters en route to Tajun (deceased)
- Tajun trainees that were killed during the Attack on Tajun (deceased)
- At least half a dozen Glatorian killed in the attack on Atero (deceased)
- The deceased Second Glatorian of Tesara; Gresh's predecessor (deceased)
- Several Glatorian killed in the Battle of Bara Magna (deceased)
A number of the species do not make a living as Glatorian, and are not given the title. A warrior not employed by a tribe usually lives in the wastelands, making a living as a bandit. Several warriors of the species were not present at the inception of the social system, and never bore the title of Glatorian. Others fought in arenas at one point, but were exiled for crimes committed there.
- Several warriors who were chosen to become Element Lords (transformed)
- An Earth Tribe warrior who became the Element Lord of Earth (transformed)
- A Fire Tribe warrior who became the Element Lord of Fire (transformed)
- An Ice Tribe warrior who became the Element Lord of Ice (transformed)
- A Jungle Tribe warrior who became the Element Lord of Jungle (transformed)
- A Water Tribe warrior who became the Element Lord of Water (transformed)
- Malum - The Second Glatorian of the Fire Tribe, exiled from his tribe for crimes in the arena
- Strakk - The prime Glatorian of Iconox, recently banished for attacking Ackar after an arena match was over
- Surel - Formerly a warrior for the Ice Tribe, Surel was thought to be dead after the war, and did not join the system.
- The Skrall - A brutal related species of fighters, the Skrall formerly employed many of their soldier class members to fight in the arenas.
- Telluris (deceased) - A warrior formerly of the Iron Tribe, Telluris wandered the wastes of Bara Magna in his vehicle, the Skopio XV-1, and was later killed by Annona.
- The Vorox - The Vorox are the same species as the other Glatorian, but genetically modified by the Great Beings. The Bara Magna Vorox have regressed into a more primal state, and did not fight in arenas for resources.
- Two warriors, one of the Fire Tribe and one of the Jungle Tribe, who were stationed in the Core Processor of the Matoran Universe to act as pilots of the Great Spirit Robot; were intended to be safely ejected after the takeoff, but remained and eventually died. (deceased)
- Several soldiers of the war who were fused into the trees of the Forest of Blades (transformed)
Social Structure and Interactions
During the Core War, the Glatorian served as soldiers, pitting their strengths and talents against the other tribes, on the orders of the Element Lords. After the Shattering, those stranded on Bara Magna became gladiators for their tribes, fighting to acquire resources. Some also served in other capacities, such as bodyguards. Due to the nature of their profession, all Glatorian were taught combat skills at the start of adolescence. Attitude toward the job varied by Glatorian; while most felt it was merely a profession, others took to the nobler aspects of it, and some disdained it entirely.
The Agori and Glatorian had a well established relationship with one another, though many of the Glatorian often felt that the Agori did not truly appreciate what they were doing. Agori, in turn, were wary of the Glatorian, knowing the destructive potential they had. Fighters also often got along well with another, despite the adversarial nature of the matches.
In the time they served as arena fighters, the Glatorian had an established set of rules they would pledge to obey by fighting in an arena. Developed by Certavus, Ackar, Tarix and Vastus, and transcribed by Tarix, the Creed served as a code of honor for the Arena Match system. Violation of these rules often lead to a variety of different punishments, the most severe of which was exile. Glatorian would mostly adhere to these rules in order to retain their jobs and avoid full scale war, though fighters did occasionally have to be exiled.
The rules were as follows:
- All Glatorian must fight to the best of their ability. Accepting bribes to lose a match or in any way trying to affect the outcome is prohibited.
- Matches end when one fighter is incapacitated or surrenders. Matches to the death are forbidden.
- Striking an opponent after he has surrendered is forbidden. A Glatorian who has conceded a match is also prohibited from attacking once he has surrendered.
- Weapons allowed to be used are determined before the match by the villages involved in the fight. The type of match - Glatorian vs. Glatorian, vehicle vs. vehicle, or Glatorian and Agori vs. Glatorian and Agori - is also decided before the match.
- A village that loses a fight must hand over the disputed item or resource within a reasonable time, or be considered to have forfeited all future matches.
- Violation of match rules by a Glatorian can be punished by suspension, exile, or a lifetime ban from the arena.
Eleven Glatorian canister sets were released in 2009: six in early 2009, and five in mid-2009 under the name "Glatorian Legends". Each Glatorian carries a Thornax Launcher and a Thornax fruit which can be fired from the launcher when one squeezes the launcher's sides. The Mata Nui canister set was also included in the "Glatorian Legends" line, though Mata Nui was never considered a Glatorian in fiction.
Glatorian sets also included in their instruction booklets rules for the BIONICLE Action Figure Game, a two-player game which can be played with 2009 Glatorian, Agori, and other sets. Each Glatorian set contains a "Life Counter" piece which can be rotated to indicate the Glatorian's life points. The version of play featured in the instructions allows each player a single Glatorian figure and its canister. Taking turns, each player fires their Thornax, either at the opposing Glatorian's canister to remove one of the foe's life points, at the opposing Glatorian to remove two of the foe's life points, or in no figure or canister's direction. Regardless of the aim, the Glatorian figure then must move to where the Thornax lands. The game ends when one Glatorian's five life points have been reduced completely, and the player with the remaining Glatorian wins.
Two other variations can be played with Glatorian sets: one where each player uses two Glatorian sets, and another where each player uses a Glatorian and an Agori. In the latter variation, the rules remain the same, save for the provision that a player with two Glatorian active gets two chances to fire either Glatorian's Thornax Launcher each turn.
One other Glatorian, Perditus, is included as a vehicle pilot in the large boxed set Thornatus V9, and can be used in the BIONICLE Action Figure Game against another vehicle or creature set according to the rules on BIONICLE.com.
One Glatorian, Gresh, was released in 2010 as part of the BIONICLE Stars line.
- All Glatorian, except the Skrall and the Vorox of Bara Magna, are of the same species. The Vorox of Bara Magna were originally part of the Glatorian species, until the genetic mutation of the Great Beings caused them to evolve, having a more bestial appearance. Later, the regression of the Bara Magna Vorox into little more than beasts would break all of the contacts between the two species. The Skrall, however, are relatives of the main species.
- The Great Beings used the Glatorian species as the basis for the Matoran Universe guardians, the Toa.
- In an illusion placed on Sahmad, 750 years after Spherus Magna reformed, a group of Glatorian lived in a city known as New Atero on Bota Magna. Kiina and Ackar were among these Glatorian.
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