From its outset in 2001, the BIONICLE storyline has been told through a plethora of Media. Debuting in an Online Game and later appearing in a series of Comics, Books, Movies, and Animations, the BIONICLE franchise has utilized many forms of consumer-oriented media.
BIONICLE has been promoted with the use of online Websites throughout its run. The main website, Bionicle.com, was launched in 2001 to promote the line. The website would be updated throughout the year with the product launches and cover story material before being rebooted annually for the new releases. Several offshoots and related websites were also released, notably BIONICLEstory.com, a story focused companion website that hosted the web serials and served as a hub for biographies and other related information.
LEGO has also utilized numerous Microsites, occasionally hosted by other companies, when distributing specialized types of media.
List of Websites
- Metru Nui Ministry of Tourism
- Legends of Metru Nui Micro Site
- Web of Shadows Micro Site
Many types of video games supplementing the line have been released; one of the first BIONICLE media was the Mata Nui Online Game, a Flash-based web game with puzzle and adventure elements. There have been three major online games, as well as numerous home and handheld console experiences.
For BIONICLE's reboot in 2015, video games came in the form of smartphone apps.
Comics have appeared as a visual media for BIONICLE starting in 2001, with the first comic written by Greg Farshtey and illustrated by Carlos D'Anda and Randy Elliott. The comics, distributed by DC Comics, they came packaged free with the official bi-monthly LEGO Magazine. The series went through a number of different artists during its tenure, including Stuart Sayger in 2006 and 2007, Leigh Gallagher in 2008, and Pop Mhan in 2009.
Animations have been used in BIONICLE to promote sets, the storyline, and other BIONICLE-related material. Many animations were created by ADVANCE and Ghost.
BIONICLE's first generation had four direct-to-DVD movies made for it: a trilogy of movies from 2003-2005, created by Miramax and Creative Capers, and a fourth in 2009 by Tinseltown Toons. The second generation featured a 3D television streaming series on Netflix, BIONICLE: The Journey to One.
BIONICLE books made their debut in mid-2003, with a series initially written by Cathy Hapka before being taken over by Greg Farshtey. They were published by Scholastic in the U.S. and Harper Collins Children Books in the U.K. In 2015, a new series debuted, written by Ryder Windham and published by Little, Brown and Company.
BIONICLE has featured in LEGO's bi-monthly periodical, the LEGO Magazine (known under various names) with promotional and story information. LEGO has also released other theme-focused magazines - notably the BIONICLE Magazine series in 2016 - in conjunction with other publishers and distributors.
LEGO has periodically hosted contests featuring BIONICLE, dating back to the inaugural year. Many of these contests were held directly through LEGO via their magazine, but others have featured promotional partners and television networks for prize distribution.
The original BIONICLE Trading Card Game appeared in 2001, followed by one expansion pack as well as three other games.
Seven BIONICLE board games were released during the first generation of BIONICLE. The first was released in 2001, the second and third (the latter of which was based on the first movie) in 2003, and one per year through 2007.
Promotional CDs were inserted in sets for many years, starting with the Toa Mata Mini Promo CD. They contain information about the set, including promotional videos and biographies of the characters.
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