Tagged: Char’s Counterattack

Master Grade Sinanji Version Kai Preview

I remember when this kit first came out. The Unicorn was awesome and cool and everyone was talking about it. A friend of mine mentioned the Sinanju and all I could say was, “what the hell is that?” I’m not sure if it was my ignorance of Master Grades at the time, but I had no idea what this thing was! I wasn’t following anything for Unicorn, because at the time it was just some novel to me that was doomed to die in obscurity after a couple Master Grades only the crazy fans were interested in. Funny how times change.

Honestly? If it weren’t for the Nu Gundam, I’d probably have no interest in this thing. What’s worse is Bandai has plans for an OVA version of this suit, so it’s entirely possible that I just wasted my time buying this thing because a superior version is coming out. Just my luck, huh?

Obviously, there’s a lot of kit here, probably even more than the Nu Gundam ver Ka. Yet, I’m not sure what I’m getting myself into here. This was the last kit of 2008, yet it uses no polycaps. This kind of worries me, namely after my experience with F91 and Crossbone. It’s entirely possible it won’t be as bad here, but we’ll have to see. The idea certainly didn’t stick, considering kits these days use polycaps again.

I, like any other sane modeler, hate the stupid little tubes. So, for my project, I decided to delve into the world of crazy third-party pieces in addition to my standard allotment of decals. I wanted to buy replacement thrusters, too, but I couldn’t find any that I liked. All the thrusters I saw looked ugly with giant poles sticking out of them, and the ones that looked better required drilling. How about no.

In addition to some standard decals (which had to be third-party because the Bandai ones are too hard to find), I bought some metal decals for the gold details, because there’s no way in hell I’m painting those. Interestingly, the kit actually came with waterslide decals for the gold bits, but they just aren’t as shiny as I would have liked, so I’m opting to go with the metal ones. I’ve gathered that they’re more like stickers, but the finish is too awesome to not consider.

Still, I have to wonder how hard it would have been for Bandai to actually make these molded details. It feels like a cheap way out for them, especially on a 1/100. I’m very much in the school of “if you don’t like the way it looks out of the box, you should paint it”, but this is a bit much, especially when you take into account how hard those details are. Trust me, my Geara Zulu was no walk in the park.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t equal parts excited and terrified of this project. It’s incredibly far out of my comfort zone, but I feel it’ll be good practice for when Bandai releases the Sazabi later this year. If you want this kit now, I’m not going to stop you, but just remember than an OVA version of the Sinanju is coming soon, so go for that when it comes out at FPNYC!

Post to Twitter

Master Grade Nu Gundam Master Kai Build Log Finished

So close, it’s just so damn close!

Never before in my life have I built a more satisfying kit. The Nu Gundam Version Katoki Master Grade is an engineering marvel, and it looks damn impressive too. It comes so close, so COMPLETELY CLOSE to being perfect in every way, but there is one critical area that it fails in, and while it can be fixed without TOO much effort, it’s annoying enough to honestly shave a few points off this kit, especially since it’s something that so easily could have been avoided. But it certainly doesn’t make it a bad kit.

Nu Gundam has quite a profile, largely thanks to the Fin Funnels. The final kit comes covered with well over 100 decals, all painstakingly applied, and I don’t think I missed any. At least, I hope to god I didn’t miss any. Some people were bothered by the inclusion of waterslide decals, but honestly, they work so much better than dry-transfers do. Remember, whenever you’re using these, make sure to topcoat your kit afterwards!

I figure I should talk about the Fin Funnels now, since they’re the kits key flaw. While they look AMAZING, they just don’t work like they should. The new mechanism is great in theory, but it just doesn’t work. All of the funnels are identical, and have interlocking teeth to keep them in place. The problem is, they aren’t strong enough, and fall off at the slightest touch and lean forward. I hear you can fix them just by cutting out some internal plastic and adding a little brass rod, however.

I hear the Double Fin Funnel configuration is more stable, but I was never a fan of that so I’m not building that for mine. Sorry guys!

That said, the rest of the kit is absolutely fantastic. The new mechanism for the hands works flawlessly with the weapons. They’re essentially the same as the Real Grade hands, but far more effective. A dual peg/slot system not only allows the hands to grip the weapons tightly, but it also makes weapon swapping easier.

Both beam sabers are included; the standard lightsaber one and the crazy one with the tiny bit coming out the bottom. I have to say, it can really reach for its sabers!

For the bazooka, I actually didn’t paint the inner mechanism because otherwise, it would just be paint scratch city. Not like it matters after it gets topcoated, though!

The shield is a lot of fun, too, and I painted some gray details on it to enhance the appearance. It’s even mounted on a ball joint for more articulation potential.

The final destroy mode is a sight to behold. I actually forgot to take a few pieces off when I took the pictures for the last review, whoops. That would explain why I had so much trouble with the back of the legs! But honestly, just look at this thing–whether you like the concept or not, Nu Gundam in Destroy Mode looks freakin’ SWEET.

The stand is very effective, too, including six poles for all of the Fin Funnels. I’m keeping mine with half on the back and half deployed, since with only half on its back, they’re actually stable. The full stand design can allow for some really impressive poses.

Do I recommend this kit? You’re damn right I do. Is it perfect? No way. It comes close, so VERY VERY CLOSE, but the issue with the funnels is far too annoying to ignore. They certainly aren’t a dealbreaker however, and I have to say, the rest of the kit is still worth it. It still comes highly recommended, and I certainly suggesting buying it on sight if you see it at FPNYC!

Post to Twitter

Gunpla Expo part 2-Master Grades

You know, this time last year, I probably wouldn’t even be making this a separate article.

Master Grades just weren’t my thing back then, but now, they’re pretty much my primary. I certainly haven’t given up on High Grades, but I guess I now just feel confident enough to tackle the big boys. Not like I haven’t been having a blast with these, heh. I just need some more bad guys and non-Gundams…

Once again, pictures are from gundamkitscollection.com.

In a move that I’m not sure surprises me or not, we’re getting a Master Grade Jesta! Considering how prominent this thing is in the latter episodes of Unicorn, I’m not that surprised, but it’s so close to just being a grunt that it seems odd to see it get a Master Grade. I’m not bothered by the announcement; I’ll just get to reasons why I’d rather see something else later.

Now this, this actually surprises me. While yeah, Bandai loves reusing molds whenever they can, I can’t say I was expecting a ReZel Type C kit in the MG line. The poor Creamsicle ReZels haven’t done anything in Unicorn so far except show up and get trashed by the Sinanju and Rozen Zulu. It’s a neat design, for certain, but I really don’t see it deserving an MG save for the obvious part recycling.

This one is pretty cool: The Sinanju Stein. I was actually not sure on this one’s origin at first, but according to my friend this is the Sinanju’s original appearance before Full Frontal stole it. I’m actually kind of interested in it, but it’s something I’d have to give a custom color scheme. But isn’t it sad that, aside from the standard Sinanju, this is the ONLY Neo-Zeon MS from Unicorn in the Master Grade line? I’m no rabid Zeon fan, but the Feddies have a SERIOUS advantage in 1/100 scale! The lack of even a Geara Zulu is just shocking. I’m sure plenty of crazy Zeon fanboys would eat them up.

The Strike Gundam is getting a 2.0, and I’m not sure how to feel about it. On one hand, it’ll be great to have a Strike to match the rest of the SEED Master Grades, but they didn’t do it for the Wing Gundam, so why do it here? I’ll definitely get this, but I’m just worried about the other weapon packs. Will I have to buy the old kits again and just waste the base Gundams, or will there be new ones? I guess time will tell.

And finally, some things we’ve seen already. Tallgeese is sporting the sleek yellow highlights from Hajime Katoki’s art, which I’m all for. I think it’ll match with the Wing Gundam and other ver. Ka/Endless Waltz designs perfectly.

As for the Nu Gundam… words can’t describe how much I’m in love with this thing. Just looking at it makes me want it even more. If you look closely, you’ll notice that it has a Psycoframe similar to the Unicorn Gundam! Not only that, it’s compatible with an LED unit, so parts of that might even light up!! Oh, and did I mention it actually comes with waterslide decals?! I can’t wait to start this thing, seriously.

A slew of kit announcements have made this Gunpla Expo a treat for fans of any scale. There’s also the possibility of a Master Grade Wing Gundam Zero TV VERSION, but that was just a sketch. Either way, remember to check in at FPNYC for your Master Grade needs!

Post to Twitter

Top 5: Favorite Gunpla Kits (part 2)

By Christopher Troy

By now, most of you have died due to suffering from anxiety attacks related to what 3 Gunplas I would pick to round out the top 3. To those who have survived, I admire you’re strength. So let’s reveal another runner up, and  reveal what I ended up choosing for my top three choices.

Runner Up:

Gundam Cherudim

Series Origin: Gundam OO

In terms of accessories and value, it’s really hard to top the Cherudim. He comes with a variety of firearms, both large and small, and the snap-off armor/floating shield gimmick is very neat. But why didn’t it make the cut? Several reasons: out of the 4 Meisters, it’s definitely the ugliest/least unique looking kit I built. The boxy look does not do well for Lockon, especially given how sleek and thin the Dynames was.  2nd of all, it suffered from a weak left elbow joint which fell off nearly all the time, something I didn’t have to deal with when it game to the OO.  While it is a better kit (in my opinion) than the Dynames, it’s a honorable mention at best, and probably has something to do with the fact that I’m a pretty big Lockon fan. Continue reading

Post to Twitter