Review: 6217 Surge
Posted 30 December 2011 - 01:40 AM
Set Number: 6217
Price: $8.99USD , 9.99 Euro
Year of release: 2012
Shock the villains in their tracks with SURGE’s electricity shooter!
SURGE, there’s been a jail break at the Hero Factory and we need your help recapturing them! We can’t leave anything to chance, so we’ve equipped you with a high-power electricity shooter, plasma gun and super-thick armor. Slap those cuffs on them and give them the shock of their lives!
Hero Factory 2012 has taken an interesting new direction with the set lineup. Rather than 6 small Hero canisters and 3 or 4 larger villain sets with an overarching theme of jungle or fire, we have a mixture of large/small Hero/villain sets paired up against each other in separate “Cops & Robbers” missions. There has been a mass breakout from a prison station, and now the Heroes need to catch them!
Surge returns after being absent on Savage Planet as 6217 Surge (not Surge 4.0), sporting stylish new armour, weapons and his original helmet. He is one of the smaller sets, which gives him an assortment of pieces slightly larger than the previous Hero canisters, but at the same price (depending on area, sorry US). This could be because Surge has a reduced packaging cost of a resealable bag instead of a plastic canister or box.
There were a lot of mixed feelings about the switch to bags, which can be likened to the Toa Mahri “canisters” of 2007, which required you to rip open the packaging to get to the set. I’m pleased to say that the new Hero bags work quite well, although I had wished to be able to collect the Hero canister lids in more colours.
Surge’s bag shows him gallantly floating in space amongst asteroids and discarded machinery, shooting his Zamor at a “+200 GAME POINTS” advertisement for the online component of the Hero Factory experience. He seems pretty peeved that LEGO is filling his cover space with pop-up ads, but perhaps if he didn’t ignore Splitface blatantly causing expensive property damage in the background, LEGO wouldn’t need to resort to advertisements like that!
The packaging backgrounds and graphics are impressive and detailed as usual, and I’m especially impressed this year, because there are 5 different background themes for each of the Hero/Villain missions. The printing of the bag is very good, although there is a strange red outline to some of the details, which doesn’t have any 3D effect when viewed under anaglyphic glasses. The back uses a reflective chrome base, but the colour printing is strong enough to obscure this where there is printing.
The back of the bag shows the action features of the set, such as the new Zamor cannon, the “new” helmet that you may recognize from 2 years ago, and the cuffing feature, as demonstrated on a Hero. But over half of the back is dedicated to more online game advertisements and legal text. Perhaps this mass breakout has cost Hero Factory millions, which is why Heroes are now required to advertise for corporate investors and say licensed catchphrases. The game ad shows that the new Hero cores have exclusive codes for getting game points, like the Kanoka club of yesteryear.
The legal text is printed on chrome, so you have the option to admire how shiny it is rather than reading it.
Here’s a comparison shot between the two bag sizes. There isn’t much of a difference in size, which is reflected in the size differences of the actual sets.
There isn’t one. When full of pieces, the new bags stand up well and feels very well packed, especially the smaller bags such as Surge’s. Additional polybags inside make the pieces feel padded and protected, so much so that you could battle by throwing Surge and Splitface sets at each other while still in their bags. But what fun is that when you could be battling with the real LEGO included within?
On the table!
After slicing open the zipper seal, the contents of the set are revealed; one big polybag, a torso, Mahri tube and badly squashed instructions. I feel that the tube should probably have been included in the polybag, because it’s one of the easiest pieces to remove from a small rip in the outer packaging. For sets that have been sitting in the stores for a while, you may want to double check that the outer bag hasn’t been cut open discretely.
Once flattened out with a heavy book, I was able to delve into Surge’s instructions, as a matter of pure curiosity, because you don’t need them for the actual build.
The first pages explain the “+200 GAME POINTS” just as well as the front and back packaging did, using the exact same graphics. The game looks new to me, but features Stormer 2.0 fighting Drilldozer, so I’m not convinced that it’s new. Why do these sets give game points for a game featuring the previous Winter wave?
The instructions are very standard, but they’re clear and easy to follow. The instructions seem to think that Surge’s sword is transparent, but it uses the translucent blue of Zadakh rather than the transparent blue of a Kaukau. Why do I still use BIONICLE comparisons? You all understand them right?
The back of the instructions feature Splitface, Surge and...
Let’s just move on…The web address currently denies that the combiner exists as well.
The next pages show the Surge/Splitface pair, and yet another advertisement for “+200 GAME POINTS” feature.
And then we have some very cool shots of Black Phantom and the Breakout Hero team. I love the shading and effects on these shots, and eagerly hope for a larger poster format.
On next pages there is a three-shot ad for the Superheroes, and a LEGO club advertisement. But I’d better stop boring you with the paper, and get back to the plastic!
Surge has a total of 39 pieces, which is a small step up from previous Heroes. This is largely due to the cuffs, and small axles/pins. Surge has a healthy selection of recoloured pieces, but doesn’t do too well in the armour shell department compared to other new sets.
Surge has a new torso shell with exclusive lightning printing. I preferred the printed standard shells over printed armour, because while this piece works well for Surge, the lightning print restricts the use of this otherwise very nice piece in blue. Hopefully the unprinted version of all the new armour will appear on LEGO PaB or Recon team as unprinted Silver/Black 5M shells did.
Surge also has new lime bones, a grey socket (that previously appeared in Ninjago sets), gunmetal chain links and a recoloured blue lightning sword. I think this is a great weapon choice to continue from Surge 1.0, although you don’t get a second sword to combine together.
All of the new sets feature a new white core piece, which has grey printing to highlight the “H” instead of the torso piece highlighting it. This grey printing is slightly misaligned on my core, giving a shadow/embossed effect. The reason for this identical core in all sets is to allow inclusion of a unique 9-digit code on the back of each core, for use on Herofactory.com. Technically this makes these cores the most collectable pieces ever, with limitless variations to collect, but I think I’ll pass on that challenge. It will be interesting to see if codes with real words are possible, or if those have been filtered from the code list.
With two rod connectors, the new Hero core does not fit on old chestplates or 2.0 Hero heads, and looks odd on plain pieces of armour.
The new cuff pieces come in gunmetal for all of the Hero sets, introducing the play feature of cuffing the villains so that they can be returned to jail. The pieces make good use of the existing Bionicle chain links and have chain, pin and bar connection points, along with the “cuff connection point” which easily snap on and off the bones/axles that make villain arms. The cuffs should work on most previous villains/Bionicle characters as well, if they have normal arms. My only qualm is that these cuffs are a step down from the glowing energy cuffs that the Heroes used in previous missions, although those never existed in plastic. Trans-coloured chain links could’ve done this, but I think that gunmetal links are a far more versatile recolour to have.
Surge’s build is exactly the same as previous Heroes, but the result is strikingly different for a build so similar. Simply put, this Surge is an amalgam of new pieces and 1.0 pieces, resulting in a new style of Hero that you’ll either hate or love.
The Completed Set
Here he is; Mark Surge the lightning Hero! His colour scheme conspicuously doesn’t look very lightning-like, but the chest print, helmet and sword get the point across. The lime in Surge 2.0 was used to replace the trans-neon green of the first Surge’s eyes and core, but now it appears as a secondary armour colour alongside trans-neon green eyes.
Surge’s new torso looks very flash and heroic from most angles, although from the side you can see how it lacks bulk without a Hero chest plate on top as with previous Heroes. The Hero chest plate fits well over the new torso piece, but prevents the new core from attaching, and the printing underneath shows through the side/holes in the chest plate messily.
Unsurprisingly Surge’s back is exposed to attack from anything, although his arms and legs are better protected. I’m baffled as to why Surge’s lightning tubing is comes out from his back much lower than Stormer 2.0’s ice tubing. Surge’s posability isn’t restricted by connecting the tube further up.
Surge is very posable due to the standard 13 points of articulation. Here we see him boogying to some smooth jazz, or perhaps he’s just lost his footing.
Back to business! Surge is in pursuit of the fugitive known as Splitface!
Halt criminal! See this sword? It’s blue; that means it’ll fry your circuitry with a single blow!
I used to have two but I traded it out for this sweet Zamor cannon. Don’t move!
Before I cuff you, wouldn’t you agree how fantastic it is that I can hold the cuffs in my hand like this? Why don’t I have a coffee mug like that?
Just you wait until we meet again in my review Surge!
Surge is a couple of bricks shorter than the large Heroes, but the Zamor cannons and chestplates/cores help tie this new team of Heroes together. This is the first time that Toa/Glatorian/Hero teams have been split over different price ranges, but it does help prevent clone builds. When you’re limited to humanoid Heroes in the new HF system, there’s only so much variation possible within the same price-range.
Colour Scheme - 7/10 – Surge is faithful to both of his previous incarnations, but unfortunately that meant making Lime almost as prevalent as his primary blue colour, which doesn’t make a lot of sense for a Lightning character. While I’m pleased to have more sets with Lime pieces, there are even less sets with Blue pieces, and Surge could’ve provided many more Blue parts.
Parts - 7/10 – Compared to previous Hero sets, Surge has a very impressive range of new and nice parts; Lime bones, Blue and Lime shells, gunmetal chain links, a blue Lightning sword and a blue/trans-clear Mahri tube. He would be a good set to get if you’re looking for both Lime and Blue pieces, but if you’re only looking for one colour, Breez 2.0/4.0 or Surge 2.0 would be much more beneficial. I’ve given Surge a 7 for pieces because his part selection pales in comparison to the villains of this wave that go for the same price point, particularily Thornraxx and Toxic Reapa.
Design - 9/10 – As far as Heroes Surge’s size go, Surge is very well designed, owing to the cuff features, good looking Zamor canon and the return of trans-eyes. All he needs is a solution for covering his back, and that hose moved up a bit.
Articulation - 10/10 – Surge has all of the articulation you would expect him to have, plus the flexible cuffs, if those count for something.
Quality - 10/10 – Quality-wise there is nothing wrong with Surge, except for the breakable Glatorian head socket. The printing on the torso armour and Hero core is good, and the plastic quality is fine. I’m also quite pleased with the resealable bags, which work well for set storage if you need it, but otherwise can be flattened for storage thousands of times more efficient than Bionicle canisters.
Overall - 43/50 – There’s no denying that Surge is a fantastic set, with excellent pieces and a final model that combines the personality of the first Surge with the amazing pieces of the second. You won’t be disappointed with this set, but unless you particularly like certain pieces in this set or Surge’s character, I recommend that you pick up one of the villain sets first, because they generally seem to have even better pieces/builds.
For more Surge action, head over to the end of my Splitface review, to look at combining the two sets together!
Posted 30 December 2011 - 02:30 PM
Furno approves Pepsi Max. Buy it now.
Posted 30 December 2011 - 04:40 PM
Technically, the translucent blue used here is the same color as the transparent blue of a Kaukau. The difference is that because this piece is not polycarbonate, it doesn't have that glassy look that we typically associate with transparent pieces. The instructions don't make any distinction based on what material a part is, only its color. But thankfully TLG has taken to exercising great care when rendering the box art of sets so that they can't be accused of false advertising in this regard.
Anyway, great review! I had been kind of meh about Surge for a while, but after seeing several reviews including one video review he's one of the Heroes I'm most looking forward to getting, along with Breez. Evo and Furno are also on my list, but my twin brother got the 2.0 Evo and Furno sets, so I think he's going to want those himself.
Changes I would have made would have been to give him back armor like Rocka and to change the lightning bolts on his chest to bright yellowish green, as well as possibly giving him bright blue hands instead of bright yellowish green ones. I have a fondness for lime and blue, but the fact that his arms and hands are almost completely lime is a bit overpowering.
Overall, though, I like his depiction in this set. His color layering maintains the "boots and tights" superhero look that Furno and Breez have, but without the white that for some reason so many people seem to hate. Additionally, extrapolating from that, his lime arms and hands make it look like his shoulders are muscular and his costume lacks sleeves, which for some reason I feel suits his personality. Maybe I'm just generalizing based on his penchant for street slang in Ordeal of Fire, but he just gives me the impression of a slick, athletic
Thanks so much for the review and the excellent photos!
Posted 30 December 2011 - 05:36 PM
As I stated in my own review of him, I really like Surge too (aside from the hollow back), but I wonder what he'd look like with teal instead of lime.
Just out of curiosity... how many spare parts did you got?
Ich weiß, dass ich nichts weiß.
Visit my MOCpage!
Posted 31 December 2011 - 12:49 AM
Posted 31 December 2011 - 03:37 PM
Ich weiß, dass ich nichts weiß.
Visit my MOCpage!
Posted 31 December 2011 - 04:28 PM
Though I do see some parts that could be useful with MOCs.
I know the real you and its not what my optics are seeing."
Artic: "You never seen the real me."
Reaper: "Oh yeah, the one that took out half of Stormer's Hazard Unit back in the Galactic War fifty years ago. The same one that preform torture of Surge before he died from the loss of oil from his body."
Artic: "I've changed, you don't know what its like to be online every second and see images of those I've killed in my head. You don't know what its like to have this pain hitting the spark every day."
Posted 31 December 2011 - 04:48 PM
One last question: do you plan to have all these review images - Breez, Thornraxx, Surge etc. - uploaded in HQ as well?
Posted 01 January 2012 - 01:27 AM
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