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 May 1, 2004


May Is BIONICLE CD-ROM Month
Mark: I am starting off BIONICLE CD-ROM Month with the Mini CD-ROM included with the European TOA VAKAMA set. The first thing to note is that this disc is a Great Disk. Yes, the pattern imprinted upon it is the Great Disk of Ta-Metru. It does not have the code, but it does have all nine pips (some are obscured by the pictorial instructions).

The disk contains the same program that you can download from the KANOKA Club if you have entered a code from a VAKAMA KANOKA Card. There are some differences though.

The Mini CD-ROM program opens up with a little video left off of the download. The video transforms Mata Nui into Metru Nui and then gives a sneak-peek of the VAKAMA video that is also on BIONICLE.com. Afterward, you are taken to a slide-show explaning how the TOA METRU must seek the six missing MATORAN to find the six Great Disks. This is the same slide-show as the download, except that here TOA VAKAMA is now moving. He breathes and turns and fidgets much like the characters displayed in previous Mini CD-ROMs.

In fact, all of the characters are moving throughout this version of the program. The other addition to the CD-ROM not found on the download is background noise. The noises give each location more of an ambience and a sense of place.

The goal of the program is for VAKAMA to find NUHRII. In NURHII's home, VAKAMA finds a shattered plaque with images of a mask and the disk from which it was made. Your first challenge is to rearrange the pieces in the right order so VAKAMA can identify the mask. This is the classic "15 puzzle", the world's most popular mechanical puzzle up until the Rubik's Cube. Well, almost. This is the 3 x 3 version, the "8 puzzle".

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VAKAMA goes to the forge to look for NUHRII. While there, he has to prove himself to Brander (the MATORAN keeping watch) by identifying which of six masks are flawless. Having done so, Brander sends VAKAMA to the Great Furnace. That is where we are treated to the full VAKAMA video, full screen, at nearly twice the resolution of the online version.

Someone has sabotaged the vat controls, so it is up to VAKAMA to fix them. This is our second "8 puzzle" to solve. The geometric design of the controls might make this a little bit harder than the mask puzzle, but then again maybe not.

Having fixed the controls, Kapura shows up to direct us to the protodermis pile. There we need to find the mask from the broken plaque. Having found the mask, another MATORAN, Kalama, shows us a dropped note asking NUHRII to come to an abandoned Mask-Maker's house.

Click To Enlarge


There we finally find NUHRII, but he is trapped. To get him out, we have to play a game up "Pick-Up Sticks". Once he is free, the game is complete and we are presented with four movies to choose from: a Mask of Light preview, a preview of the BIONICLE video game, a preview of BIONICLE 2 like the one online at BIONICLE.com, and the TOA VAKAMA video we saw earlier. You can also restart the game here or exit.

For those of you who don't know, you should click the restart button here before exiting if you ever want to redo the puzzles. If you don't click the button, when you come back to the game all of the puzzles will already be solved for you.

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8601 VAKAMA (TOA METRU)

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