Review: Official Set 8995 - Thornatus V9
The Thornatus is a dune chariot which is used as transports and combat vehicles. It is the most heavily armed of the vehicles in the Agori villages. In order to use its weapons though, the vehicle must slow down from its top speeds because the weaponry shares a power source with the engine. The wheels of the vehicle can slide in and out to control its speed.
Of all the pilots/drivers that we’ve gotten so far, Perditus is easily the most built out and complex. He mirrors the size of a typical Toa and is more than just 6 pieces snapped together. His mask is the same as the one we received in the Baranus V7 set, just in dark red this time. The mask really reminds me of the Sakaaran from The Guardians of the Galaxy. Perditus has all of the articulation you’d expect with this type of build, so overall he’s a pretty nice asset to the set.
Moving on to the actual Battle Vehicle, this thing is huge. I knew it was going to be big once we saw the wheel during the unboxing, but this superseded even my thoughts then. The size can be controlled partially by choosing to have the wheels tucked in or spread out. The nose of the vehicle controls the configuration. Pulling the nose out brings the wheels forward and out, while pushing it inward tucks the wheels in close to the body. In reference to the lore, the wheels being tucked in reduces speed and instead diverts power to the weapon systems.
Weaponry on the Thornatus include four skyblasters, which we’ve seen over and over throughout Bionicle, and a Thornax Launcher which is mounted on top of the cockpit. Much like the other Battle Vehicles from this year, the Thornax Launcher can be aimed at almost any angle for a variety of attacks.
There isn’t a ton of fine detail spread across the vehicle, but it looks incredible with the amount of detail they did include. My favorite is the Barraki mask from Krika used as an accent over the wheels. I’m a really big fan of the color scheme for this set. I know it plays along with the other tan sets we’ve seen so far, but in terms of a larger set, it’s the first one we’ve gotten to include a shade of brown and it was executed very well. The Thornatus actually has two life counters on it, which I interpret as having double health, unless it’s referring to Perditus for one of them. Out of all the sets so far I find them to be the least distracting in this one as they’re pretty well tucked away.
Perditus is able to snap right into the cockpit via pins in his back, and then can be supplemented by attaching his hands to two operation sticks on either side of the body. The hand attachment really fuels my imagination for how this vehicle would be controlled.
Current Pricing & Final Thoughts
If you want to get this set for your own collection, be prepared to pay up for it. In used condition this set currently costs around $160, and inflates up to the $200 mark for brand new sealed condition. The gap between new and used is surprisingly small, so I would actually suggest going sealed if you can find a good deal, but if not I don’t see any potential issues with going the used route.
Overall, this set is incredible. It’s certainly my favorite Battle Vehicle, and that goes for both 2008 and 2009. It sparks me as the premium ground version of the Jetrax T6, and that set at its base was pretty awesome. There is tons of weaponry, a new color scheme for a large set, and the pilot is a full build rather than just a cheap inclusion. This is one of the sets where I can really feel my imagination stimulated, and I’m no little kid, I can only imagine what I would’ve thought of this set back in 2009.