Review:71307 by Dorek

From BIONICLEsector01

BS01 Reviews

71307 Gali - Uniter of Water

By Dorek (View Gallery)

Review: 71307 Gali - Uniter of Water

The mighty Toa of Water surfs into the fray. Is she a mighty ocean, or a small puddle? Let's find out.

The Box

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Gali's box comes with your usual pictures and text. Gali herself cuts an imposing presence on the box; it's interesting how a few degrees of an angle can make a difference when it comes to dynamic posing. Amusingly, the way Gali holds her tool isn't actually the way she's built in the instructions, but I love that freedom of creativity from LEGO; they're saying that their way isn't the be-all, end-all of how you play with these sets.

The typical warnings and box comic on the back. I like these box comics, but if you've been paying attention, you'd realize that they're all almost identical. Umarak's victory and defeat poses, respectively, are replicated across the boxes, and the way the Toa meet and integrate with their creatures are mostly the same as well. Considering how many comics they have, it makes sense, but still.

The Bits

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At 87 pieces, Gali is smack in the middle of the medium-sized sets. One of the first things you'll notice opening up the bags is the vibrant presence of orange amidst the (way too many) blues. Last year's Gali used yellow as accents, but with those going to Lewa Uniter this year, Gali gets orange instead. Artistically speaking, a tricky proposition. Yellow and blue are adjacent on the color wheel, but orange is across from blue, making it a complementary color. Could theoretically neutralize the effectiveness of the blue, so we'll see.

Also, lots of transparents. At one point I claimed we were "hurtling toward an all transparent future", which holds true, but the other sets have kept it pretty tight to far. Gali didn't get the memo, and has four different kinds of blues, two of them transparent, which was a huge issue for the Master incarnation.

The Build

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Gali's torso comes in two main parts, one for the upper body, and one for the hip. Click the two together (which are subsequently held in place by a powerful dark magic) and you have waist articulation, one of the most requested features of BIONICLE's previous generation. They are turned via a gear knob AND a standard toothed small gear, combining the sensibilities of both gens.

Also, a random grated cheese slope on her lower back. The Toa this year have all included various pieces to help fill out their frame, but this is sort of it for Gali. Probably not necessary, but better than nothing.

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Custom shoulders using the old Hordika neck piece (still one of my favorite pieces in the world) add a bit more depth. Hers is sort of a basic connection, but it's effective nonetheless. The sides, interestingly, are not actually constructed in the same way, which is curious, but will probably make sense later one. Add in the Unity armor piece (which I still wish would be used as chest armor in a larger set, but maybe in the future) and you have the complete torso.

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Here's where the blues come in. Not a huge fan of layering transparent on transparent in general, but it's passable here. The dark transparent blue is just incredibly superfluous anyway, though.

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Asymmetrical armor? My one weakness! I've always had a fondness for asymmetry, and it looks like it works here. The freefloating Skrall armor might put some off, but I like the extra freedom of movement when it comes to posing, as long as it's not overdone.

The torso armor has only one point of connection, which has been a source of contention among fans, but ultimately conforms to the body very well (or were the bodies conformed to the armor piece? Philosophize that!). It has the accenting orange, and features the Nuva Symbol at the center, which is just too nostalgic not to love.

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To my relief, the arms followed the same color layering as the legs, and it was then I realized that it could be salvaged. Master Gali had joints and limbs of wildly varying colors (and multiple metallics, which is never a good idea) but despite the two trans-blues, Uniter Gali is keeping it basic. Would have perhaps been nice to see the upper arms/thighs in black/grey, respectively, but the armor does a good job of covering that up.

The presence of simplicity is the principle that characterizes the whole set; while the other Toa have had many degrees of flexibility thanks to the customization of limbs, Gali is the most "CCBS"-y 2016 set, with a very nondescript arm connection and type. No frills, just the essentials.

Even the asymmetry, which would otherwise stick out, is actually carefully constructed to not be too chaotic, mirrored from the top half to the lower one. I'm also a sucker for shoulder pauldrons like this, and it works here.

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Gali has a fairly straightforward weapon, in keeping with the rest of her design. Just one of the new blade pieces, a shame, but the various armored enhancements are not a distraction like Pohatu's, and just something to help flesh the weapon out a bit instead. The spinning rotor on the end of her spear is, like Tahu's weapon, probably more than a little goofy, but is sort of the one allowance of pizzazz that the set gives itself, and is definitely fun to spin around.

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The final model is a bit hard to pose, due to the weapon being two-handed, but you can make do. Gali's more of a looker than a player, when all's said and done, but the measured color scheme means that she looks good. The set comes with the standard golden mask, which doesn't do much for her overall appearance; it might be the overpowering dark blue blend, or the already well-incorporated brightness of the orange accents, but the gold doesn't belong.

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The Brass Tacks

Should I get this set?


  Good for people who like:

• Simplicity - Gali is probably the most straightforward set of the wave, but in a refreshing way.
• Asymmetry - Craftily placed armor swaps create a flair; artistic without being chaotic.
• Color control - With just the right amount of accents and strict placement, Gali reins in an otherwise explosive amount of colors.
  Not for those looking for:

• Color limit - Although it's impressively tight in terms of distribution, four blues (for instance...) is really unnecessary.
  Other Comments:

I know I compare them to their past versions a lot, but Gali really feels like an "upgrade" to her 2015 incarnation, whereas the others are just "different" (or, rarely, worse). --Dorek

While she sometimes wishes that she could wield her staff more menacingly, Gali is an excellent addition to the 2016 BIONICLE wave. While a lot of Toa lost the form factor that made them so unique in the previous year, Gali has intelligently placed armor pieces to create a figure that matches and even exceeds the previous model. She still suffers from an apparently incurable case of "way too many colors" syndrome, but a tightly regimented distribution prevents it from being completely out of control. Her simplicity, far from being annoying, is actually an asset, since it's well applied to the entire model. At the price point, it's possible that you might want a slightly more robust figure, but lovers of standard CCBS will find plenty to play around with here, and she has all the cool new features that the line offers.

2016 Set Reviews (1HY)
71300 71301 71302 71303 71304 71305 71306 71307 71308 71309 71310 71311
Review #1 By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek By Dorek
Review #2 By SPIRIT By Cholie By SPIRIT By Swert By SPIRIT By KZN02