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Review: 8996 Skopio XV-1

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This is a review of 8996 Skopio XV-1.

First of all, I'm NOT a big Bionicle fan. My seven year old son is. But I love a nice design. I'm also a Scorpio for my sign. And this being a Skopio, stung me. Eww... That just sounded bad. Sorry. Anyways, I just love how they made a tracked vehicle that can transform into something that looked like a Scorpion.

Set Name: 8996 Skopio XV-1

Theme: Bionicle

Released: 2009

Pieces: 849

Price: $89.99/63.26EUR/54.66GBP

Here are some quicklinks Lego.com, Brickset

Wanna see some pictures? Let's start with the normal box arts and manuals!

Box art front

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Wow. Lego is getting into the details. Just looking at this box makes me want to get it. But I'm always a sucker for the glossy red. Just like with the 8943 Axalara T9 (click for a small preview of pictures for a later review on that set.) I was a sucker for the red. Turns out it's closer to a dull red. Not that all glossy. :hmpf_bad:

Box art rear

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More nice art work. This time of the vehicle in "tracked" form. Also, shows the game wheel that is included for a Bionicle game. The set comes with two. One for the driver, another for the vehicle.

Instruction manuals

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Just a copy of the front art box. Still.. It does look nice.

Part listing

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I would advise on clicking the photo to see what it includes.

Part bags

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Lego seems to be in full swing now to use numbered bags to make it easier for the younger builders to find the parts they need while following the instructions. Nothing loose this time. Sometimes a few miscellaneous parts aren't in any plastic bags.

Contact sheet of the build.

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I was so excited to start this build. Two instruction booklets, lots of pieces... Then I noticed the one drawback of this set. Lots of repeat building. Once you do one leg, repeat three more times. Once you build half, do that one more time. This set has a very creative idea, but doesn't do it well. I mean, it does it fine for the amount of pieces. But I think it could've been made better with a bit more time and parts. Here are the parts that I didn't like.

1) When the treads fold out to be used as a legs, there's nothing to keep it extended, so it's easily collapsible if you try to move it when in leg mode.

2) If you look at the ending of the leg build where the front and rear treads get connected, you'll see something like pistons. They are there to help the thigh bend upward only so far. But if you're like me, you'll first try and bend it in the wrong direction. You'll break the plastic if you do. That's when I noticed it bend ONLY one click upward.

3) The figure doesn't sit well. Well that's not true. It sits ok. But the foot actually extends down past the pistons of the legs when in "tank" mode. See final photo of the side profile of the "tank" mode. Because of this, the two front treads doesn't point straight forward because the feet is blocking the pistons, which in turn stops the treads from pointing forward. I think this can be fixed with some adjustments of Lego pieces..

4) The person looks a bit big sitting on it. Or something just doesn't look right. Maybe it's because it's missing a motor or engine. It looks like in the pictures he's sitting on a frame with treads.

Besides that, it looks and plays fine. The gripes sound big, but it really is ok. You just have to remember, it's not real. I still like the design.

Final photos

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He's angry. Fiery eyes and mouth. Maybe it's because he's painted yellow. Just kidding.

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Front view. Very slim profile. I like it. Here you can see I didn't "click" back the right (right of picture) leg back up. Still looks straight, but the dual pistons on the right side is angled down.

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Side profile of what I call "tank" mode. The tail is in the lowered position. Yes, the red is this dull. Not the dark glossy red like that on the cover of the box.

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Rear shot. You see the number dial at the top of the tail? No? You see the number 2? OK. There. That belongs on the driver's back. When he's driving, his numbered wheel gets attached here to the back of the tail.

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Front view of the leg or walking mode. Notice the thighs are angled up? Only one click up. No more. And don't try and click it downward. Not even one click. If you do, you'll notice the pistons on the legs will force bend and will eventually get broken.

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Side profile of the walking mode with the tail standing upright. Looks interesting. I can see how this would make it easy to shoot at things from cover from behind a wall.

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Rear view of walking mode.

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Top view of tank mode. This looks sleek and very beefy. By the way, the front claws are closed with a rubber band. So the pinchers actually open and close if you open it with your hands. And yes, you have to remove those silver tubes that are attached to the driver's head for him to be removed from the vehicle.

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A side profile shot with tail standing up and the side armor in the down position. Not sure how that would be useful.

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A side profile shot with tail standing up and the side armor in the up position. As you can see, the tail can still be upright. And no, there is NOTHING holding the tail up. It will fall forward/backward very easily.

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Closeup of the driver and tail. Two of those ball shooters and one spike shooter. I LOVE that gold spike-y ball thing. Anybody want to send me more of them?

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Aperture focused on the spiked ball. Sweet.

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Aperture focused on the ball launcher and the number wheel for the vehicle. The drivers number wheel is on the back if you looks closely.

Extra parts

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Hmm... Yeah. Lots of extras. I'm pretty sure I didn't miss anything.

Features

Not a bad set. The tracks move. Each tracked part can swivel outward and fold out to give it legs like of an insect. Comes with TWO ball shooters and one of those spiked ball shooter. The figure is totally pose able. The middle armor can move up/down, and so can the "tail" move up/down.

My rating:

Playability: 3/5. Most Bionicle sets are meant to be played by kids. Only thing with this set is it's built closer to that of a Technic set. Because of this, the vehicle feels fragile when articulating the legs.

Design: 5/5. When comparing to other Bionicle sets, this ranks up there in design. Someone put a lot of thought in thinking how the vehicle can transform from a "walking" vehicle to a "tracked" vehicle. Given more time and parts, I think it could've been made a bit more realistic with a engine or something.

Build experience: 3/5. Comparing it to other Bionicle sets, this is... Hmm. Not sure. I don't normally built Bionicle. My son does. But since I build the "bigger" Bionicle sets, this would be one of the more complicated sets but a lot of it was "wash, lather, rinse, and repeat."

Overall: 4/5. This set was over $85. It was worth it. I liked the design. My local Toys R Us has it for $105! Nope. Not worth that price.

Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed it!

All photos are click able for larger, bigger-than-life picture sizes! You can see all photos used here: 8996 Skopio XV-1.

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I like the set after having built it myself.

The issues with the legs:

Yes they can only rotate upwards one click. A bit disappointing.

Rotating downwards, you don't actually break anything, but you will bend the cross axle and "cylinder", until they dis-engage from each other. Not the best design,

but I think you can do that 1000 times without breaking anything.

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Thanks for the review! Great pictures. Previously, the only thing keeping me from getting this set was the price. Now I see it's gappy and most of the useful pieces in it I can get elsewhere. Too bad it's red... I already have enough red panels from Axalara, thank you. =P

I think I'll just get Thornatus...

~Bunda

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Thanks for the great review! :wub: You take very good photos.

There's a copy of this set on sale in a local store and I've been eyeing it off! :tongue:

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Thanks! I liked the set. But it's smaller than I thought and two, the red isn't the red on the box. Closer to the color in my photos.

Thanks for the great review! :wub: You take very good photos.

There's a copy of this set on sale in a local store and I've been eyeing it off! :tongue:

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Oh, I can't believe that I missed this review! The reason is probably that I almost never go to the Bionicle section of the forum. :tongue:

Great pictures as always! :thumbup:

It's weird how the part selection is so small for such a large set. 98 normal Technic pins and 96 tread pieces, now that's crazy. :wacko:

I like how the set can transform, but the part about how the pistons can break if you click the hinge pieces the wrong way is horrible. I bet that many kids will be sad...

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