Saturday, June 2nd, 2007 at 8:31pm by Andrew, BZPower News Manager
[Source: Electric Turahk]
May has over and June is here. What does that have to do with today's news? Well, not much, except that it's the first of what will hopefully be a review-filled month. Today we bring you a review of the Hydruka Thulox, courtesy of Forum Assistant and Reference Keeper Electric Turahk. Read on to find out what he has to say about the red Rahi of the Deep.
Thulox the Hydruka. He’s a Rahi, in case you can’t tell by the four legs. That's a first for the small sets. But, is this red and black creature of the deep worth your money? Why not see what I think.
From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.
First, please note that the rear tab has been popped in, and the box opened. This is because the pictures were taken after I had opened the set and built it. If you see the tab even just slightly pushed in like seen in the image below, don’t buy it. It may have been tampered with, and parts could be missing.
The front of Thulox's box has much more going on in it than those of 2006's small sets. The white, bland background has been dropped and replaced with a scene in the surrounding area of the near-invisible Mahri Nui. As for Thulox himself, who takes up most of the space on the box, he is walking forward while simultaneously shooting a Solidified Air Bubble at... something. It has a sense of action in it that the "Doomtoran" lacked, making it a little more attractive. The red splotches on the side are a nice artistic touch, though it does look a bit like blood.
The back of the box has a little less going on than the front. Thulox is in a different pose shooting yet another Solidified Air Bubble, though it is less dramatic. In the top-right corner is a diagram explaining how to shoot said bubble. And at the bottom are pictures of the two Matoran and the other Hydruka, Morak. The pictures are fairly large and clear, and do a good job at displaying and advertising the sets.
Now, if you haven't seen Thulox or any of 2007's other small sets in the store yet, you may be surprised. Why, you ask? The box is massive compared to the older ones. It is twice the width of the old boxes and the same height. I don't quite see why, though, as the parts themselves aren't all that large.
Once you get home/in the car/somewhere and open the box, you may be in for another surprise. The instruction manual has been stricken by enlargement as well (It is pictured below folded in half, as that is how it is packaged). In addition to that, most of the pieces are either small or large. At first glance it may not appear you are getting the 39 pieces promised on the box. But do not fret, you are. Most of them are just pins or pinaxles, though.
Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?
Building Thulox is pretty straightforward. His basic body design is sort of like an "I" or an "H," but with limbs and a head and tail sticking out of each point. It's pretty simple, and actually looks kind of bare until the armor is added on the back. The armor is a new piece, by the way, but more on that later.
One of the things I looked forward to in building Thulox was discovering just how Nuparu Inika’s claw was attached to the Rahkshi head. Boy, was I in for a shock. It's really similar to the Rahaga's head connection, but with one other difference besides the giant claw sticking out of the bottom. For those of you who don't know, the Rahaga's heads were attached by two 1x3 flat liftarms. They had a major flaw, though, and that was that it was near impossible to get the top liftarm off because it was completely covered by the Rahkshi head. This problem has been fixed in the Hydruka with the use of a 1x4 lift arm with a half stud projection on one side. In other words, it is not flush with the skull and sticks out of the back so you can pull it down and out. It's pretty effective, but as I said, it is also pretty simple. Not that that's a bad thing, of course.
Thulox only comes with one new part. But, oh what a part it is. It is the exact same part, with the exact same coloring, that is used six times in Barraki Kalmah. What makes it so great is the variety of ways it can be attached to a piece. A pin can be put through the hole at the top, or axles through the side in three different spots. It's pretty versatile, and would be a great part for MOCers.
Thulox may only have one new piece, but he does have a couple of other interesting ones. First, there is the silver claw piece that was formerly exclusive to Toa Nuparu Inika. Mine came in a lighter shade of silver, much like how the weapons in last year's Matoran came in pearl and silver variants. Then, there are the two black double socket pieces that were first available in Roodaka. They are becoming increasingly common, another good thing for MOCers. The final piece of notice is the Zamor launcher and Zamor. These were included in all of 2006's canister sets, but not in a small boxed set. The launcher itself is not all too exciting because of that, but the Zamor may be. The Zamor packaged with Thulox are yellow and varying shades of yellow. The two that came with my Thulox are lemon and yellow-orange, closer to yellow, in color. So for those of you saying you have a special or misprint Zamor because it’s lemon, which is pretty much pure yellow, I'm not quite sure you do. From what I have seen, it is in all actuality a common color because the Zamor are meant to be yellow.
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.
Like I said before, Thulox is very thin without his armor. But once that is added, enough bulk is there to hide that and make it look reasonably OK. That is, unless you look at the bottom, then you’ll see the ugly "H" design.
One would assume that a shape such as this would be pretty solid, right? Well, it’s actually pretty flimsy. Friction pins connect the double socket joins, so they sway around very easily. And despite it making posing a tad bit easier, it is still quite the nuisance. The head and tail are both attached by an axle pin with friction, allowing for some movement. Unfortunately, it is very limited, and these move on their own, more easily than the legs.
At a glance, one should be able to tell that Thulox is a Rahi, which is a good thing, since he is. He may look eerily similar to another set though — he looks just like Fenrakk if he were shrunk about ten times and given a tail.
The other half of the fun is in playing with the set. How well does the set function and is it enjoyable to play with?
Thulox, along with all the other small sets this year, retain last year’s collectible. Naturally, I asked myself, "Why?" but I assumed it was simply to add in some sort of action while saving money compared to making a new one. Despite that, if you liked the Zamor launchers, like me, you'll still like these "Solidified Air Bubbles."
Posing is limited because of the (cliché) Metruan arms that make his legs. It's hard to get Thulox in any good-looking pose other than the stereotypical legs pointed out position. Like I mentioned before, the double socket joints help, but not a lot.
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?
What's to like?
- Fun to shoot Za-I mean Solidified Air Bubbles
- Has some good parts
What's not to like?
- Difficulty in posing
- Same clunky tool from last year
Well, I hoped you enjoyed my review of Hydruka Thulox. The smaller sets are improving greatly since their start all those years ago with the Turaga. I would highly recommend picking up at least one of the Hydruka, Thulox or his blue partner, Morak, not just from a collection stand point but just to see how well the designers have done. Sure, he has his flaws, but Thulox is a great set when you take into consideration it's only a small one.
Be sure to thank Electric Turahk for creating this review. Keep checking back for more 2007 set reviews brought to you by the Staff of BZPower!
« Return to News