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Lego David

Why is Constraction So Disrespected?

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I can't help but notice how people who are not into constraction constantly ignore it, say bad things about it, or even straight up insult it sometimes. I see people doing LEGO Themes tier lists and putting themes like Bionicle or Hero Factory in the "garbo" tier. MOCers would just completely ignore any constration MOCs, despite how amazing they are. People looking trough old LEGO catalogs would just instantly skip every time they get at the Bionicle/Hero Factory pages, and not even take a small look. All those things really make me angry sometimes. I mean, ok, constraction is not your cup or tea, I get that, but going as far as saying it's garbage just because it's not "real LEGO" is a bit way too far. Something that is brought up against this would be that "people have different opinions". Yes, that is true, but can you really have an opinion if the only thing you know about it is that it's not "real LEGO" ? If you would do your research, read the entire Bionicle lore, and take a close analysis on the sets, and still think it's garbage, than I would respect your opinion. If not, than you are just hating on it for no valid reason.

 

Those people have 0 respect for Bionicle and it's community. The Bionicle community is one of the biggest branches of the LEGO community, and people just insult it for no real reason. That, in my opinion, is worthy of shame, and it's something the really should be changed about the LEGO community.

What do you think?

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1 hour ago, TeriXeri said:

But does that really mean someone needs to have bought/owned that set to form a "Valid" opinion?

No, but at least watch a review of the set or something like that. 

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I would say it's 50/50. There are those who really don't like constraction, and there are those who absolutely adore it. I started LEGO with constraction sets, and I have so much respect for them. Hero Factory and Bionicle set reviews, from my observation, is one of the most viewed categories of LEGO set reviews, some even reaching 1mil+ views. The Bionicle contest, hosted back in 2016 is still the biggest online contest ever. 

I believe Bionicle and Hero Factory have been very well received by the majority (mostly kids, not that it's a bad thing, because when they eventually grow up, their fond memories with those sets would make them respect those themes), I suppose because there are plenty of LEGO Brick purists around places like forums and blogs which is why their opinions are heard more often. 

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Posted (edited)

Are you sure it’s spelled constraction? If you can, I recommend changing it to construction.

 

 

Edited by classicbuilder

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I think a big part of it is that, in general, it's sort of two degrees removed from what most traditional Lego fans think of as "Lego". Technic is one degree removed from classic bricks and plates, and most Technic-based constraction is sort of one degree removed from that.

Constraction themes are also story-heavy, something a lot of older fans don't seem to understand the value of compared to traditional "open-ended" themes. And, especially for kids, they also emphasize a type of action play that can rankle adult fans who only build for display.

This isn't to justify the level of derision that constraction often gets from older fans, just to explain it. The thing about Lego is that it can be big and broad enough to encompass all sorts of play and building experiences, and to write off one sort of that or another as "not REAL Lego" is irritating.

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I dont know if you necessarily want a reasoned argument, but here goes anyway. Please note that this is just a subjective debate about toys and hobbies at the end of the day, and of course it doesn't matter two hoots what someone wants to collect. Its a free world.

Firstly, whereas something like Lego Modular has similarities to Ikea and architectural scale models, Constraction basically involves playing with dolls. Which is not what most AFOLs got out of their 'Dark Age' for. It feels a bit too close to Barbie. Now I know at the same time collecting minifigures is considered cool in some quarters. But I suppose they benefit from smallness and cuteness and the fact they traditionally came in cool houses or spaceships.

Secondly, Constraction is more closely related to Technic than System. And, if you're a System fan, used to making scale models of coffee shops or castles, Technic is a bit too close to Meccano and mechanical engineering, and gears and levers and so on, which don't hold any attraction.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Lyichir said:

This isn't to justify the level of derision that constraction often gets from older fans, just to explain it. The thing about Lego is that it can be big and broad enough to encompass all sorts of play and building experiences, and to write off one sort of that or another as "not REAL Lego" is irritating.

I can't agree more. 

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Something else to keep in mind is that a LOT of AFOLs are drawn back into the fan community after a “dark age” due to a desire to relive something special from their childhoods. So in those cases, even a set with just as interesting or enjoyable a building experience as the themes or licensed brands they enjoyed as kids might not have any value in terms of what THEY seek from the LEGO brand: an opportunity to rekindle an old or familiar interest, not to experience new and unfamiliar ones.

We AFOLs young enough to have experienced constraction themes as kids often haven’t had a lengthy dark age. So being part of this community today isn’t an effect of a mid-life crisis that compels us to seek out our childhood interests as an emotional anchor, but rather a more continuous awareness of LEGO as a potential source for new experiences. That’s a pretty different perspective!

Growing up in a time of much more rapid change for The LEGO Group probably also prepared us for it in a way that the smaller and more consistent portfolio of themes in the 80s did not so much for that era’s KFOLs.

Another complication is that any theme that’s massively popular with kids tends to flood the aftermarket and depress aftermarket prices as kids, whether by choice or necessity, part with childhood toys to prepare for a more independent adult life.

It’s easy for an AFOL today to look at BrickLink prices for Bionicle parts and sets compared to other discontinued items that were less popular with kids and more popular with AFOLs (Santa age Super Chief, Orient Expedition sets, etc) and think Bionicle is cheap stuff nobody wants, even if it’s just a normal thing that happens with lots of other kid-preferred themes.

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On 7/6/2019 at 2:23 AM, Aanchir said:

Something else to keep in mind is that a LOT of AFOLs are drawn back into the fan community after a “dark age” due to a desire to relive something special from their childhoods. So in those cases, even a set with just as interesting or enjoyable a building experience as the themes or licensed brands they enjoyed as kids might not have any value in terms of what THEY seek from the LEGO brand: an opportunity to rekindle an old or familiar interest, not to experience new and unfamiliar ones.

We AFOLs young enough to have experienced constraction themes as kids often haven’t had a lengthy dark age. So being part of this community today isn’t an effect of a mid-life crisis that compels us to seek out our childhood interests as an emotional anchor, but rather a more continuous awareness of LEGO as a potential source for new experiences. That’s a pretty different perspective!

Growing up in a time of much more rapid change for The LEGO Group probably also prepared us for it in a way that the smaller and more consistent portfolio of themes in the 80s did not so much for that era’s KFOLs.

Another complication is that any theme that’s massively popular with kids tends to flood the aftermarket and depress aftermarket prices as kids, whether by choice or necessity, part with childhood toys to prepare for a more independent adult life.

It’s easy for an AFOL today to look at BrickLink prices for Bionicle parts and sets compared to other discontinued items that were less popular with kids and more popular with AFOLs (Santa age Super Chief, Orient Expedition sets, etc) and think Bionicle is cheap stuff nobody wants, even if it’s just a normal thing that happens with lots of other kid-preferred themes.

Fair argument, but that still doesn't explain why a lot of AFOLS tend to just say bad things about Bionicle for no real reason. Sure, it's not their thing, and I can understand that. But why say bad things about it and insult the people who like it just because of that?

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On 6/22/2019 at 10:35 AM, Lyichir said:

I think a big part of it is that, in general, it's sort of two degrees removed from what most traditional Lego fans think of as "Lego". Technic is one degree removed from classic bricks and plates, and most Technic-based constraction is sort of one degree removed from that.


Constraction themes are also story-heavy, something a lot of older fans don't seem to understand the value of compared to traditional "open-ended" themes. And, especially for kids, they also emphasize a type of action play that can rankle adult fans who only build for display.

Couldn't it just merely be that constraction systems aren't quite as intricate or versatile as The LEGO System and Technic in terms of the parts they've offered? The way I see it, it isn't the playthemes as much as it's the constraction systems they're built upon. :def_shrug:

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2 hours ago, Digger of Bricks said:

Couldn't it just merely be that constraction systems aren't quite as intricate or versatile as The LEGO System and Technic in terms of the parts they've offered? The way I see it, it isn't the playthemes as much as it's the constraction systems they're built upon. :def_shrug:

Eh... I'd hesitate to say that. The CCBS in particular was designed with a significant level of versatility in mind, with fairly basic shells and bones as a base that further detail can be added to (contrasting with earlier Bionicle parts which often locked particular aesthetic forms to particular building functions). Yes, even those parts were primarily designed to build articulated figures, but that's not much different from the sorts of "specialized" parts in other themes like castle windows, ship hulls, train bases, and so forth. Like those sorts of parts, they might not seem versatile if they don't hew to the type of building that they are best suited for, but they are good for their intended purpose and with creativity can be applied to other sorts of builds as well.

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9 hours ago, Lego David said:

But why say bad things about it and insult the people who like it just because of that?

Why does anyone hate on anything? That is a pretty open ended question. 

Some people revel in complaining and grumbling, forever seeking more things to dislike and be negative about. There are people out there who rate it poorly, there are people who will rate constraction high on their theme lists.

It isn't something to take personally, everything is subjective :shrug_oh_well:

These tier lists are another meme fad that will pass.

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18 hours ago, Digger of Bricks said:

Couldn't it just merely be that constraction systems aren't quite as intricate or versatile as The LEGO System and Technic in terms of the parts they've offered? The way I see it, it isn't the playthemes as much as it's the constraction systems they're built upon. :def_shrug:

Constraction isn't anything less intricate than System or Technic in any way. As @Lyichir has pointed out, they aren't any less specialized than ship hulls, castle windows, etc. And to be fair, from what I have seen, in my opinion Contraction get the most intricate and creative when it comes to MOCing, easily surpassing System when it comes to creative use of parts.

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18 hours ago, Lyichir said:

Eh... I'd hesitate to say that. The CCBS in particular was designed with a significant level of versatility in mind, with fairly basic shells and bones as a base that further detail can be added to (contrasting with earlier Bionicle parts which often locked particular aesthetic forms to particular building functions). Yes, even those parts were primarily designed to build articulated figures, but that's not much different from the sorts of "specialized" parts in other themes like castle windows, ship hulls, train bases, and so forth. Like those sorts of parts, they might not seem versatile if they don't hew to the type of building that they are best suited for, but they are good for their intended purpose and with creativity can be applied to other sorts of builds as well.

2 hours ago, Lego David said:

Constraction isn't anything less intricate than System or Technic in any way. As @Lyichir has pointed out, they aren't any less specialized than ship hulls, castle windows, etc. And to be fair, from what I have seen, in my opinion Contraction get the most intricate and creative when it comes to MOCing, easily surpassing System when it comes to creative use of parts.

Of course both the LEGO System and Technic have their own specialized, prefabricated parts; but, it may not be what parts constraction systems have as much as it's what kind of parts they lack, particularly those smaller, more-intricate pieces like "cheese wedges" and what-not that the others do have. Personally, I do appreciate (even respect) the "Ultrabuild" system for being much more standardized than G1 Bionicle's Technic-based system, though their part selections are still more particular than the LEGO System's broader selection of more versatile, basic-shaped parts with an intricate, interconnected geometry. 

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41 minutes ago, Digger of Bricks said:

Of course both the LEGO System and Technic have their own specialized, prefabricated parts; but, it may not be what parts constraction systems have as much as it's what kind of parts they lack, particularly those smaller, more-intricate pieces like "cheese wedges" and what-not that the others do have. Personally, I do appreciate (even respect) the "Ultrabuild" system for being much more standardized than G1 Bionicle's Technic-based system, though their part selections are still more particular than the LEGO System's broader selection of more versatile, basic-shaped parts with an intricate, interconnected geometry. 

Maybe it does lack some parts some people may want, but hey, you can always combine both of them, resulting in amazing results. They are both LEGO, after all, even if they don't appear in the same types of sets in official LEGO products.

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Lego David said:

Constraction isn't anything less intricate than System or Technic in any way. As @Lyichir has pointed out, they aren't any less specialized than ship hulls, castle windows, etc. And to be fair, from what I have seen, in my opinion Contraction get the most intricate and creative when it comes to MOCing, easily surpassing System when it comes to creative use of parts.

You start of complaining that people hate something you like with no valid reason. Then you go on to say that Constraction MOCs easily surpass System when it comes to intricate and creative use of parts. But you don't give a reason for this. There are loads of genius creative parts use in both system, I cannot see how using Constraction pieces in creative ways surpass those of using System pieces in creative ways.

So in your behaviour, you have indicated the reason some people say they don't like Constraction. People like what they like and don't like what they don't like. They tend to talk up what they like and for the most part ignore what they don't like and in some cases go on to hate on things they don't like.

Personally I don't like Constraction much, and I'd flick over the pages for it in a catalogue because I wouldn't buy it. I rarely look in the Constraction forum here for the same reason. But then I would also skip past Angry Birds, most Disney and Superheroes girls' themes, and so on. Not because I don't respect them but simply because I don't like them and would not consider buying them. I'd prefer to look at what I like rather than what I don't like. Would you skip pages in a catalogue that have Star Wars, Brickheadz, Jurassic World and Minecraft sets, themes that you have stated you would like to end and have also disrespected in other ways?

For example, here you have disrespected Jurassic World:

This movie was the first to generate half a billion dollars in the opening weekend and it is the sixth highest grossing film of all time yet you dismiss it as "movie which didn't perform well critically" and "it's just annoying when LEGO just uses a bad/mediocre movie that comes out to reboot their licenced themes". And in the same post "As far as Harry Potter, I can agree with that too. I have no interest in it either, and that too was only brought back for the cause of a bad movie. I would too like to see it discontinued. " Harry Potter has a massive following, and the new sets appear to be incredibly popular. And there is the massive reason it was brought back.

I cannot see how that is any different to someone saying they don't like Constraction.

 

 

On 7/7/2019 at 2:43 PM, Digger of Bricks said:

Couldn't it just merely be that constraction systems aren't quite as intricate or versatile as The LEGO System and Technic in terms of the parts they've offered? The way I see it, it isn't the playthemes as much as it's the constraction systems they're built upon. :def_shrug:

I think it is not as much versatility, but knowledge. I bought a load of constraction parts for my kid a while back. But we rarely use them. We don't really know how to use them. I can pick up most system LEGO parts and I know how to use them without needing to think too much. But as I don't have much knowledge about constraction, anything we build tends to look like crap. Not necessarily because the parts are bad, but due to insufficient knowledge about how to put them together in a decent way.

Now I'm not stupid, I can see this part clicks into that part and so on, it is the extra dimension of building a decent MOC and knowing which part would look good where, and so on. If you are used to building with System parts, building with new System parts is easy. I imagine the same is true with any other building system - if you are used to it, then the individual parts make sense. If you are not, then it is much more difficult to understand the way to use the parts.

Edited by MAB

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38 minutes ago, MAB said:

This movie was the first to generate half a billion dollars in the opening weekend and it is the sixth highest grossing film of all time yet you dismiss it as "movie which didn't perform well critically" and "it's just annoying when LEGO just uses a bad/mediocre movie that comes out to reboot their licenced themes". And in the same post "As far as Harry Potter, I can agree with that too. I have no interest in it either, and that too was only brought back for the cause of a bad movie. I would too like to see it discontinued. " Harry Potter has a massive following, and the new sets appear to be incredibly popular. And there is the massive reason it was brought back.

I cannot see how that is any different to someone saying they don't like Constraction

At least, I have a reason why I personally don't like those themes. Weather people consider my reasons valid or not, it's a different story.  

With constraction, on the other hand, people would just hate it for absolutely no reason. As I have said already, I understand that it's not everybody's cup of tea, and that is totally fine, but when people start saying bad things about it just because it's not their cup of tea, that is the point where it starts getting irritating.

To put it in @Lyichir's words:

On 6/22/2019 at 6:35 PM, Lyichir said:

This isn't to justify the level of derision that constraction often gets from older fans, just to explain it. The thing about Lego is that it can be big and broad enough to encompass all sorts of play and building experiences, and to write off one sort of that or another as "not REAL Lego" is irritating.

 

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Just now, Lego David said:

At least, I have a reason why I personally don't like those themes. Weather people consider my reasons valid or not, it's a different story.  

With constraction, on the other hand, people would just hate it for absolutely no reason. As I have said already, I understand that it's not everybody's cup of tea, and that is totally fine, but when people start saying bad things about it just because it's not their cup of tea, that is the point where it starts getting irritating.

 

That is exactly what you have done concerning Jurassic World and Harry Potter / Fantastic Beasts (and a number of other themes). You personally don't like them and you have disrespected the movies and the franchises.  With Constraction people don't like them for a number of reasons, and they disrespect them. Why is saying "Constraction is not real LEGO" any different to saying "it's just annoying when LEGO just uses a bad/mediocre movie that comes out to reboot their licenced themes"? Both are factually incorrect, and said as a way to justify the disrespect of something that someone doesn't like. If you don't like Harry Potter or Fantastic Beasts or Brickheadz or Jurassic World or Star Wars or licensed themes in general why go on about why you hate them so much? You are doing exactly what you claim others are doing, disrespecting something you don't like because you don't like it.

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2 minutes ago, MAB said:
3 minutes ago, MAB said:

That is exactly what you have done concerning Jurassic World and Harry Potter / Fantastic Beasts (and a number of other themes). You personally don't like them and you have disrespected the movies and the franchises.  With Constraction people don't like them for a number of reasons, and they disrespect them. Why is saying "Constraction is not real LEGO" any different to saying "it's just annoying when LEGO just uses a bad/mediocre movie that comes out to reboot their licenced themes"? Both are factually incorrect, and said as a way to justify the disrespect of something that someone doesn't like. If you don't like Harry Potter or Fantastic Beasts or Brickheadz or Jurassic World or Star Wars or licensed themes in general why go on about why you hate them so much? You are doing exactly what you claim others are doing, disrespecting something you don't like because you don't like it.

 

I am in a minority that doesn't like those themes (heck, I might even be the only one). Constraction, on the other hand, is hated by almost everyone outside the Bionicle community.  I personally did my research on those themes I did not like, and came with a personal conclusion on them. If those people who don't like Constraction did their research on it, I can almost guarantee they would change their opinion at least a little bit.

 

And I did not disrespect the movies the sets are based on, I just said that those were mediocre movies based on the audience and the critics reception of those movies. So If you think I disrespected them, than go look on the actual reviews those movies got.

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2 minutes ago, Lego David said:

I am in a minority that doesn't like those themes (heck, I might even be the only one). Constraction, on the other hand, is hated by almost everyone outside the Bionicle community.  I personally did my research on those themes I did not like, and came with a personal conclusion on them. If those people who don't like Constraction did their research on it, I can almost guarantee they would change their opinion at least a little bit.

This is simply not true. Most people that are not into Bionicle / Constraction are just ambivalent towards it. They don't care about it, but they don't hate it. They don't buy sets, as they don't fit in with their building styles, to them it is not real LEGO as it doesn't fit with the majority of system parts. Just like Galidor and Clikits are not "real LEGO" as they don't tend to fit with system building (although both can be used in MOCs if the builder thinks creatively). If it is not the LEGO you are used to building with, it is not "real LEGO". If you cannot use the pieces in your style of building, why research it?

6 minutes ago, Lego David said:

And I did not disrespect the movies the sets are based on, I just said that those were mediocre movies based on the audience and the critics reception of those movies. So If you think I disrespected them, than go look on the actual reviews those movies got.

Money earned at the box office speaks much louder than critics' reviews, especially for linked toy sales. People wanting to see the movies is what is important, not what adults writing reviews about the movies think about them. But if you think LEGO should only make sets from critically acclaimed movies, what would you have them do? Wait until the Oscars? Miss the original release dates by 6-12 months to wait to see if critics enjoy the movies and have sets out once the hype has died down?

Take a look at the fastest grossing movies, such as here (fastest to $1 billion):

https://www.businessinsider.com/fastest-movies-to-make-one-billion-box-office-black-panther-2018-3?r=US&IR=T

Note LEGO has made sets for all except two of the franchises - Avatar and the Fast & Furious franchise, the latter for obvious reasons. LEGO knows exactly what it is doing here. SW sells. Marvel sells. HP sells. LEGO knows there is a huge fanbase for Harry Potter and it would not surprise me if that is the reason they brought it back. Yet "I have no interest in it either, and that too was only brought back for the cause of a bad movie. I would too like to see it discontinued." Yes, I think that is pretty disrespectful.

Similar with your views on Minecraft."I would discontinue Minecraft. It had it's run, the game itself is no longer very popular, and the sets have started to get repetitive." At the time you said that, it was apparently still one of the biggest games in the world (https://www.businessinsider.com/minecraft-has-74-million-monthly-players-2018-1?r=US&IR=T). The playing figures since then have also gone up (https://www.forbes.com/sites/paultassi/2019/06/19/dont-look-now-but-minecraft-is-reclaiming-its-crown-from-fortnite/#504a458d14c9). Are the sets repetitive? Sure. But then most themes are. Bionicle included.

 

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7 minutes ago, MAB said:

If you cannot use the pieces in your style of building, why research it?

Because you may find something that interests you, if you dig a little deeper. Who knows? You may find a few things that fit in your style of building. I myself found somewhat an interest in the early 2000's Star Wars Technic sets just because I researched it, even if I wasn't really into it. So yeah, I don't see how it wouldn't be the same if other people did the same thing with constraction.

 

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1 hour ago, Lego David said:

Because you may find something that interests you, if you dig a little deeper. Who knows? You may find a few things that fit in your style of building. I myself found somewhat an interest in the early 2000's Star Wars Technic sets just because I researched it, even if I wasn't really into it. So yeah, I don't see how it wouldn't be the same if other people did the same thing with constraction.

 

Yes it is possible. But then people that build with mainly system parts will more naturally use things like the Mixels ball joints compared to the larger Bionicle style ones because they are smaller (so similar in scale to other system parts) and more importantly, connect via studs. The latter is important. If a buy a Mixels set (or similar) I can use just about 100% of the parts. If I buy a Bionicle / Hero Factory / SW buildable figure, I can use probably less than 5% in a MOC. That is why I wouldn't bother looking at Bionicle or similar sets in a catalogue. I'm not interested in the theme or the parts. I would (and have) bought some of the SW large buildable figures. But that was to build what they are - I was interested in the model rather than the parts. However, I (and I am sure most similar minded people) do not hate Constraction. I just don't like them, I have no use for them so I don't buy them. I feel no need to say that the theme should be ended as I don't like them.

I don't think I have ever used Constraction parts in a traditional system build, aside from parts that were originally Bionicle but have been since used by LEGO in technic or system sets, such as wings and so on.

61800.jpg

No doubt there are many more parts that system builders do use regularly without knowing they were originally Constraction.

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Posted (edited)

I had 10 out of 12 made Slizers sets back in 1999/2000 and really never used the parts in system builds as they weren't really compatible either.

And that predates Bionicle.

Might have played a role for having less interest in Bionicle in 2001 as I already had many of those similar "characters"

I mostly kept them as-is, beside trying out the mega-build provided instructions, but that was 20 years ago.

8 hours ago, Lego David said:

I am in a minority that doesn't like those themes (heck, I might even be the only one). Constraction, on the other hand, is hated by almost everyone outside the Bionicle community.  

I don't collect Licensed themes right now, or Technic, Friends, Brickheadz, CMF etc, but does that mean I automaticly hate them because I don't buy them?

Like I said, I had 10 differerent Slizers in 1999/2000, and by 2001 I didn't buy any new LEGO sets until 2016, but not because I "hated" LEGO at the time.

Basicly 2001-2015 was a time I rarely looked up LEGO sets, other interests were just higher priority at the time.

LEGO itself also was on a bit of break on certain themes, for example Town had no new sets in 2001 until 2004 (World City), and those LEGO exclusive re-release sets weren't easy to get.

But even when I got back into LEGO I have watched the 2016 wave Bionicle review videos, and they are certainly interesting from my 15-year gap viewpoint, the 2015/2016 Bionicle look very good indeed and even the older ones have some interesting designs. 

Honestly I never even knew the existance of brick built System Bionicle sets (2005-2007) until recently either. 

Around 2010 I started knowing more about LEGO again via the Club magazine, by then Hero Factory was out , still interesting sets as well nonetheless.

Edited by TeriXeri

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Posted (edited)

While I use constraction parts, I don't much like it for 2 reasons:

-constraction sets are pure toys because they feel very light, are generally in what I consider ugly colors (the fake stripey metallic ones), and were generally in designs that only appeal to kids (of the 2000's), not the adult I already was.

-as a MOCer I like how polished Lego parts generally are, but constraction parts, just like Technic panels, generally expose ugly molding marks in plain sight, ruining the parts for me. They're also not in the same plastics, they're often too bendy, and & don't age the same.
They're not even parts that have value in Bricklink for me, because they're generally those that you get with toothmarks and dirt/poop inside, no chance for these to come from adult collections.

So, unlike many, I don't hate constraction because it feels like cheating, on the contrary I like big interesting parts. Like, the shoulder in the new Reinhardt set, because the part is clean & looks like other Lego parts. Plus I'm a big fan of ball joints in all sizes, but I don't much like when they're use as normal attachments, instead of pins.

Edited by anothergol

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