After sitting in the corner of my bedroom at the total bottom of my backlog (seriously, below both the Qubeley AND the G-Falcon Double X), my first ever Master Grade Zaku II 2.0 is completed. Like I’ve said before, this wouldn’t have been my first choice of a Master Grade Zaku. In a way, I’m going to consider this my practice run, because damn, I made a lot of mistakes on this kit. But hey, at least I made all those mistakes here and not on Johnny or Shin’s Zaku. Regardless, I still think I should’ve painted this in standard Zaku colors, but whatever.
The end result is something I’m quite pleased with. It’s a Zaku, where can you go wrong? That being said, I had some issues with the painting. With the boosters, you’re going to need to prime the insides before painting red. I’ve never quite understood WHY the insides of the boosters need to be red (perhaps an aircraft buff could help me out here?), but hey, it REALLY augments the look of the kit when it’s done.
The High Mobility Zaku frame actually has one crucial and somewhat ironic flaw: the legs are actually LESS articulate than the ones on the regular Zakus!! Yeah, some high mobility unit. Honestly though, that’s just a design flaw, and one that’s shared with the Gelgoog, too. If anything WERE to be changed, it would be sacrificing a lot of accuracy. I’m always for changing designs to suit the time period, but when you need to sacrifice looks for articulation, that’s where I draw the line. Articulation is nice and all, but I’m a looks-girl first and foremost. Yeah, I’m shallow like that.
Aside from that issue, the legs are very articulate, complete with a double-joint in the toes. The cables are mounted on springs instead of hard plastic, meaning they don’t hinder that part of the articulation at all.
Also, I should get this out here now, but my god do I hate these little tubes. Word of advice, if you’re ever going to do a 2.0 Zaku or Gouf or whatever, make sure you sand and paint the tubes when they’re on the little transfer stick, you’ll save yourself a LOT of anguish. Don’t paint them AFTER they’ve been taken off the runners.
The weapon assortment is pretty cool. You get the standard Zaku armaments; machine gun, bazooka, and heat hawk. HOWEVER, what makes all of the R-type Zakus so cool is the fact that their bazookas are modular. This specific kit comes with parts to make a 320mm bazooka, which is basically a smaller version of the Dom’s bazooka—appropriate for the Tri-Stars. I really like the bazooka here; it has two hand slots and a little cover for the sight. The bazooka even has two hand slots to make holding the bazooka in different positions easier.
The heat hawk has a handle for the waist, but I’m not going to bother with putting it on there because I don’t want to scratch the paint. I HATE painting these things, especially the blades… ugh, I can never get it right.
Either way, even with all the frustration I’ve had with this kit, I definitely plan on doing another Zaku 2.0 in the future, maybe with metal parts. Johnny Ridden custom, anyway? Remember to go to FPNYC if you wanna make a Zaku 2.0 of your own!