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"You must not remove your masks, unless you are replacing one with another. Without them, your strength is halved."
Toa Helryx, Swamp of Secrets
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Kanohi are objects that grant powers to a being when they are worn, named after the Matoran word for "mask." Kanohi are magnetically attached to their wearers: usually Matoran, Toa and Turaga, sustaining all three. The Matoran have always had need of Kanohi; the first masks were created by the Great Beings for the Matoran; afterwards, Mata Nui taught them to make masks on their own. On Metru Nui, masks were made from Kanoka.

When a mask-wearer has their Kanohi removed they suffer weakness - Toa and other beings feel weak and dizzy, Turaga suffer extreme weakness, and Matoran lapse into a coma-like state if the mask is not replaced within an extended period of time. Kanohi have a tendency to retain an imprint of their owner's conscience and identity within themselves for a short time after being removed, allowing any mask to be infused with great amounts of a life-force to resurrect the deceased mask-wearer. However, after an extended period of time, the imprint will fade away.


A copper Kanohi Huna

There are four known power levels for a Kanohi, the most common being the powerless masks worn by Matoran, made from level 1-6 Kanoka. The process used to make the mask causes the energy to leak out, which is why these masks have no powers. However, they are needed for Matoran to live and function properly. Although Matoran can sense the power in a Great or Noble mask, they lack the mental discipline needed to access its powers. Matoran can customize their masks, making modifications such as adding a scope. Matoran or Noble masks can become Great masks when they come in contact with Toa Energy. This happens whenever a Toa is transformed from a Matoran. Another type of Kanohi, "Copper" masks also exist, being powerless trophies awarded to the winners of sports on Mata Nui and Metru Nui.

Turaga wear Noble masks made from level 7 Kanoka, and have access to the mask's power. Toa and other beings wear Great masks, which offer a stronger mask power, and are made from level 8 Kanoka disks, though they may still use a Noble Mask with ease.

There was also a powerful collection of masks called Golden Kanohi, which had the powers of the masks worn by the Toa Mata: Shielding, X-Ray Vision, Speed, Water Breathing, Strength, and Levitation. They were only in existence for a short time after all six Kanohi had been found by their respective Toa. They were stored inside Kini-Nui, and when the six Kanohi were placed on the Suva, they activated the release of a Golden Kanohi. The Golden Kanohi were later transformed into Kanohi Nuva upon being submerged in Energized Protodermis.

There exist some extraordinary Kanohi that possess powers far beyond a normal mask; these are known as Legendary Masks. Only three are known so far, the Kanohi Vahi, the Legendary Mask of Time, the Kanohi Ignika, the Legendary Mask of Life and the Legendary Mask of Creation. These masks are sought by many, such as the Piraka, who wanted the Mask of Life to gain wealth and power, and the Barraki, who believed it could restore them to their original forms. The only Legendary Mask to have been made from Kanoka is the Vahi, which was created from six level 9 disks fused into one. It is impossible to create Noble or Matoran versions of these Kanohi because any weaker form of the mask cannot contain the power within.

Organic Kanohi

The Kanohi that the Toa Inika bore were organic, as well as sentient. This was a result of the Matoran/Toa transformation; the masks given to the Toa Inika by Karzahni were altered by the Red Star. The masks could communicate with the Toa Inika through pain, this being the reason why Hahli had headaches whenever she was near the Kanohi Ignika. This is also the reason why the Toa Inika took little time to learn how to turn on their masks compared to previous Toa; their Kanohi helped them.

Fused Kanohi

Sometimes, bearers of a Kanohi undergo changes, and their masks fuse to their faces. In most cases, such as the Toa Hordika and Nidhiki, the wearer loses access to the mask powers. However, when Karzahni was mutated by the Pit Mutagen, his Olisi kept its powers.

Kanohi of Karzahni

While in his realm, instead of doing his job and fixing injured Matoran, Karzahni rebuilt them and gave them Kanohi of various shapes. Some examples of the Kanohi he built are the ones worn by the Matoran that lived in his domain and are now living on Spherus Magna.

Mask Making

Kanohi forged in Metru Nui

On Metru Nui, Kanohi masks were made from Kanoka by Mask Makers in Ta-Metru. The type of Kanoka and its power level determined what kind of mask it would be, and the creators could also combine Kanoka to create different masks. (A chart of which Kanoka form what Kanohi can be found here.) Level 1-6 Kanoka are formed into Matoran masks, 7, Noble, and 8, Great. The reason for these distinctions is that power leaks from the Kanoka during Kanohi creation, thus allowing only masks made from higher level Kanoka to have powers.

To forge a Kanohi mask, the Kanoka would be melted down and reforged or carved into the desired shape--the masks could not be flawed or else their powers (if the finished product was meant to have any) would leak out. Flawed masks were melted down to make more raw Protodermis. Masks would be painted with a coloring additive after being made, to differentiate power level. Matoran masks would have silver paint added to the top half, Noble, black paint, and Great masks would remain one full color. On Mata Nui, this coloring eventually faded away from sun exposure.

Certain devices can be added to Kanohi after the mask is made, such as the telescopic eyepiece commonly added to the Akaku as well as during its creation. These additions can also later be removed without damaging the mask.

There are other ways to make Kanohi, as Kanohi predated mask makers. Mask making on Metru Nui stopped temporarily while it was was deserted. However, it has resumed since the return of the Matoran. Other places where masks were made include the islands Artakha and Karzahni. It is possible to make masks out of purified Protodermis and skip the Kanoka stage.

The colors of Great and Noble masks are dependent on their wearers. When Kanohi are made originally, they adopt a grayish color which they keep until they are worn. At that point the mask adopts a color with respect to the wearer. Matoran masks, having no power, will not change color at all, making it necessary to paint them in their colors. There are some special cases for very rare and powerful masks, however. The Golden Kanohi, Avohkii, Ignika, and Vahi are all exceptional cases. When made, they had specific colors "given" to them already. It is not known why these masks had color from the time of creation.

Known Kanohi

Great Kanohi

Great Kanohi are the most powerful normal masks. They are made from level 8 Kanoka. They bestow any of a variety of powers depending on the type of mask, upon the user, like shielding, telepathy, stealth, telekinesis, or levitation. They can be in any shape or form, but throughout the Matoran Universe, mask makers have adopted specific shapes for certain powers, in order to avoid confusion if a Toa is in dire need of a mask. While Toa are the most well-known beings to use masks, many other species are known to be able to use mask powers. Below is a list of known Great Masks of Power:

0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px
Great Mask of Shielding
Great Mask of Water Breathing
Great Mask of Levitation
Great Mask of Speed
Great Mask of Strength
Great Mask of X-Ray Vision
BH Kanohi Huna.png BH Kanohi Rau.png BH Kanohi Mahiki.png BH Kanohi Komau.png BH Kanohi Ruru.png BH Kanohi Matatu.png
Great Mask of Concealment
Great Mask of Translation
Great Mask of Illusion
Great Mask of Mind Control
Great Mask of Night Vision
Great Mask of Telekinesis
Calix.png Elda.png Suletu.png Sanok.png Kadin.png Iden.png
Great Mask of Fate
Great Mask of Detection
Great Mask of Telepathy
Great Mask of Accuracy
Great Mask of Flight
Great Mask of Spirit
Arthron.PNG Faxon.png Zatth.png Garai.png Volitak.png Tryna.png
Great Mask of Sonar
Great Mask of Kindred
Great Mask of Summoning
Great Mask of Gravity
Great Mask of Stealth
Great Mask of Reanimation
Kanohi Jutlin Small.PNG Kanohi Avsa Small.PNG Kanohi Felnas Small.PNG Mask of Duplication.png Kanohi Shelek Small.PNG Kanohi Crast Small.PNG
Great Mask of Corruption
Great Mask of Hunger
Great Mask of Disruption
Great Mask of Time Duplication
Great Mask of Silence
Great Mask of Repulsion
BH Kanohi Pehkui.PNG Noimage.jpg BH Kanohi Kualsi.png Matoran Mask of Emulation.png Noimage.jpg Noimage.jpg
Great Mask of Diminishment
Great Mask of Clairvoyance Kualsi,
Great Mask of Quick Travel
Great Mask of Emulation Great Mask of Growth Great Mask of Rahi Control
Set Kanohi Avohkii.png Kraahkan Set 1.png Maskoflight&dark.PNG Noimage.jpg Rua.png Aki.png
Great Mask of Light
Great Mask of Shadows
Great Mask of Light and Shadow Kiril,
Great Mask of Regeneration
Great Mask of Wisdom
Great Mask of Valor
Rode.png Olmak.png Mask of Charisma Small.png Olisi.png Noimage.jpg Noimage.jpg
Great Mask of Truth
Great Mask of Dimensional Gates
Great Mask of Charisma Olisi,
Great Mask of Alternate Futures
Great Mask of Psychometry Great Mask of Intangibility
Mask of Possibilities.png BH Kanohi of Elemental Energy.png Noimage.jpg Vultraz's kanohi.PNG
Great Mask of Possibilities Great Mask of Elemental Energy Great Mask of Mutation Great Mask of Scavenging

Kanohi Nuva

More powerful than normal Great masks, they were created when the Toa Mata were immersed in Energized Protodermis and became the Toa Nuva. When a mask is immersed in Energized Protodermis, it will become a Kanohi Nuva if it is destined to do so. The only Kanohi Nuva in existence are the Toa Nuva's.

There are eight types of Kanohi Nuva. A Kanohi Nuva has differences from its regular version, such as: the user can grant his/her power to ones surrounding him/her, and their powers are stronger and can last longer.

0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px 0x75px
Hau Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Shielding
Kaukau Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Water Breathing
Miru Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Levitation
Kakama Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Speed
Pakari Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Strength
Akaku Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of X-Ray Vision
0x75px 0x75px
Aki Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Valor
Rua Nuva,
Kanohi Nuva of Wisdom

Noble Kanohi

Noble Kanohi are made from a level 7 Kanoka and possess weakened versions of the powers of their Great Mask counterparts. They are also formed when a Toa becomes a Turaga, during which their Kanohi transforms into a Noble one. There can be noble forms of any mask, except Legendary masks and fused Kanohi worn by Toa Kaita.

HunaNoble.png RauNoble.png MahikiNoble.png KomauNoble.png RuruNoble.png MatatuNoble.png
Noble Mask of Concealment
Noble Mask of Translation
Noble Mask of Illusion
Noble Mask of Mind Control
Noble Mask of Night Vision
Noble Mask of Telekinesis
Radiak's kanohi.PNG Gavla's kanohi.PNG Tanma's Kanohi.png Photok's Kanohi.png Kirop's kanohi.PNG Solek's Kanohi.png
Noble Mask of Corruption
Noble Mask of Hunger
Noble Mask of Levitation
Noble Mask of Speed
Noble Mask of Silence
Noble Mask of X-Ray Vision
BH Dume's Kanohi Kiril.png Lhikan's Noble Hau
Noble Mask of Regeneration
Noble Mask of Shielding

Legendary Kanohi

These Kanohi are vastly more powerful and difficult to control than other masks. If destroyed, they would unleash their powers, resulting in the break-down of a fundamental force of the Matoran Universe. Each contains a fundamental part of the Matoran Universe: Life, Time and Creation. Legendary Kanohi, unlike Great Kanohi, cannot exist at lower power levels.

BH Orange Kanohi Vahi.png IgnikaEdited.png Noimage.jpg
The Legendary Mask of Time
The Legendary Mask of Life
The Legendary Mask of Creation

Miscellaneous Kanohi

These Kanohi do not fit in any other categories:

Golden Kanohi.png Infected Kanohi Hau Small.png BH Copper Huna of Victory.pngBH Copper Komau of Victory.png
Golden Kanohi,
Kanohi that contain the powers of the Toa Mata's masks
Infected Kanohi,
Kanohi infected by Kraata
Copper Mask of Victory,
Powerless masks forged in a copper color

Unknown Kanohi

The following are Kanohi not identified in the story.

Voya Nui Matoran Kanohi4.PNG Comic Toa Mahri Leading Matoran to Safety.png Southern Continent Matoran Kanohi.png Unknown Matoran Kanohi6.PNG Unknown Matoran Kanohi5.PNG Comic Unknown Kanohi.png
A Voya Nui Matoran's Kanohi Many Mahri Nui Matoran with unknown Kanohi Two Southern Continent Matoran's Kanohi An unknown Matoran's Kanohi An unknown Matoran's Kanohi An unknown Matoran's Kanohi

Set Information

Kanohi have been featured in several BIONICLE sets from 2001 to 2010, including all Matoran, Toa, Turaga, and Makuta sets as well as sets of other species. They have also been released in several BIONICLE promotions.

Promotional art of Kanohi

In 2001 a "Kanohi" pack was released, containing two Kanohi. These could be any of the Great Kanohi worn by the Toa Mata in any of the colors they wore or any of the Noble Kanohi worn by the Turaga of their villages in any of the colors they wore. A hand-painted Infected Kanohi Hau could also appear as one of the masks, although rarely. A Toa Mata head and eyestalk and an axle piece also appeared in this set so one could display one of these masks on the lid of a Toa Mata canister to simulate a Suva.

In Germany, Nestlé cereal packs included a single Kanohi, potentially even a Copper Kanohi for lucky buyers, as a limited-time promotion. The pack also featured a cut-out BIONICLE Kanohi Memory activity on the back and a little prospect with information on each Kanohi as well as information concerning the Toa Mata, the Rahi, BIONICLE: The Legend of Mata Nui, and the Copper Huna itself, although not corresponding to canon.

In 2001, a chrome silver colored Kanohi Rua with the shape of a Hau was also released in the Power Pack in a limited number.

A Krana pack was released in early 2002. Alongside the set's three Krana it contained two Gold Kanohi or Silver Kanohi that the Toa Mata wore. Later, in 2003, a Krana-Kal pack was released. This pack, like its predecessor, contained three metallic-colored Krana-Kal and two random Kanohi Nuva which, alongside the normal coloring of the Nuva masks, featured rare silver Kanohi Nuva to represent the Toa Nuva's masks when their powers were stolen by the Bohrok-Kal.

See Also

External Links