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6 September 2015

REVIEW: LEGO Bionicle Mask Maker Vs. Skull Crusher

Masquerade.

Its been a while since we delved into the world of Bionicle, LEGO's unique character and creature building system, and it seems relations haven't improved much. Things have really come to a head in this set, where two great warriors prepare to do battle over a certain Mash of Creation. We review LEGO Bionicle Mask Maker Vs. Skull Crusher (#70795).


The Mask Maker Vs. Skull Crusher set is unique amongst other Bionicle sets as it contains two buildable figures, making it a playset of sorts. The included 165 parts might not sound like much, but together they combine to create the heroic Mask Maker (the blueish guy) and the gargantuan Skull Crusher, not to mention the Mask of Creation itself, complete with stand. Lets get cracking shall we?


As you can see, at first look it doesn't seem to be much of a fair fight. Skull Crusher towers over Mask Maker, being almost twice his height (even without his humongous staff!). Also, there is something of a scale difference between the two, with the evil Skull Crusher having very long limbs compared to Mask Maker who appears decidedly stunted, especially in the leg department. So you get a sense of the sizes here, Mask Maker is about five inches tall, while Skull Crusher stands at just over eight inches. So very decently sized action figures.


First up, the good guy. The most noticeable thing about Mask Maker is that he is made mostly from transparent blue parts which look awesome. This contrasts nicely with his gold armour and makes the character look very bright and well filled out. This sucker is also armed to the teeth, carrying a spinning saw-edged shield, and a hammer with a six-stud shooter built into it.



On the back you'll find the classic Bionicle mask launcher, which flicks the armoured mask from the character's face, and also the power-arm mechanism. Twist the yellow cog and Mask Maker's hammer-wielding arm will pump up and down, raining down killer blows onto his enemies. As you can see, this is achieved by a simple Technic gear system. Also, at the far right of the frame, you can see the part of the hammer you twist...


...to launch those six transparent studs. And yes, you thankfully do get extras included with the set.


Here he is stripped of weapons and mask. As you can see, he's extremely articulated, and we've written before about how simple yet effective the Bionicle building system is... as well as economical. This five inch action figure, fully articulated at all joints, weighs in at just 40 parts.


Next up is the big fella. Skull Crusher is significantly larger than his foe, and uses up the majority of the set's parts. Whereas Mask Maker boasted soeme great trans blue parts, this guy has some lovely red bits, including a rib cage-like section on his torso. He also features some dramatic armour plates on the shoulders and knees, and a sexy pair of HORNS! But seriously, check out that staff and sword. Our money's on this dude.


Just like Mask Maker, Skull Crusher has a power-arm feature. Twist that yellow cog and both arms will rock backwards and forwards, flailing his weapons in Mask Maker's face. The system is slightly more sophisticated here, but still a breeze to assemble.


The point of that massive staff is to pinch Mask Maker's mask (which to a maker of masks in general, most be a really severe insult). The hooks can grab the face armour right off his head, and can even be used to pick up the Mask of Creation itself, so the cheeky villain can wear it...


...like this. Look at him. What a prat. Still, you can see why these guys are fighting over that mask. It ain't half lovely, and gold is soooo in this season. This shot also lets you see the great printing details on his chest plate. Thankfully both the figures don't require any stickers at all, which we like.


Here his is sans all weaponry and face adornments. He might seem a little less well filled out than Mask Maker, with more empty space used in his construction, but by golly does this character have some presence. Whether for play or display, you certainly won't soon forget you have Skull Crusher in your collection.


And to keep it safe while the boys tussle, the Mask of Creation also gets a nice stand, made from a combination of Technic parts and a transparent base. It simply clips on, waiting to be claimed by the victor.


This is a great set, filled with lots of opportunities for play and for posing. As the figures are so damn articulated you can easily stand them in a dramatic confrontational stance. But with so many play features, such as the power-arms of both figures, and the stud-shooting hammer of Mask Maker, kids will get hours of fun facing these two behemoths off against each other. Now, how did the story of David and Goliath end?

£24.99


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