Tagged: Gundam Wing

Master Grade Tallgeese II finished build log

Motivation strikes once again!

I’ve noticed my favorite “II” mobile suits keep ending up as webshop exclusives, and I, in my infinite wisdom, have purchased all of them. The White Dingo GM Sniper II, the Tallgeese II, and I’ve already put the money down on the Crossbone Gundam X-2. Hopefully, spending lots of money on this stuff won’t be a problem soon *hint hint*. Anyway, I’m glad this came out when it did, otherwise I was going to restore my old 1/100 kit and well, that hasn’t stood the test of time. The new Master Grade Tallgeese may not be perfect, but it’s awesome nonetheless.

The new Tallgeese Master Grade, be it the I or the II, is beautiful in its Katoki-designed glory. Sure, the suit was always a Katoki design, but never before were we able to get a more faithful recreation of the lineart. Really, until the Master Grades became a thing, Katoki’s designs never really translated well into kit form.

First, let’s talk about the verniers. The two massive boosters are mounted onto the back of the torso, as opposed to the backs of the shoulders. Now, there are still some mobility issues however, and there has been some paint scraping, but overall, it’s not very noticeable. It does affect articulation, however.

The boosters are basically all linked together and open to reveal four smaller boosters. The same can even be done for the ones on the rear skirt.

I like how the shield and gun both connect to the shoulders via a connecting mechanism like on the old kit, but with a door to close when not in use this time. There are enough joints here to actually allow for the shield and rifle to be held.

Speaking of the rifle, it has this weird spring loaded gimmick that I’m not sure I understand. I think it’s to simulate what the rifle looks like while firing, but I can’t find any use for it outside of a diorama, so I’ll keep it in the extended position.

The Shield looks awesome, especially with the decals. It can easily be held in the left hand, and contains two beam sabers. Both of which use the slanted blade some of the other Wing suits come with.

Unfortunately, the very design of the Tallgeese results in some limited poseability in the legs. That’s overcome thanks to some creative use of joints, namely in the hip armor. The hip armor is attached to the hips at the skirt and the thighs to keep it stationary while the rest of it moves.

Oh, and if you’re doing the TGII, be prepared to paint the feet black. For whatever reason, these were left gray. I don’t quite understand it…

Also included is a piece for mounting it on an action base, but hey, everything uses those these days!

Oh, and another thing! Getting it into the trademark “hands on the gun” pose is not easy, and I have no clue how to properly do it…

Really, the Tallgeese kit is a lot of fun, regardless of whether or not you have the I or II. It comes highly recommended by me, and if you want one, you should make sure to look for the Tallgeese I at FPNYC!

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Tallegeese II Build log part 1

Once again, motivation hits me like a brick to the face. And that’s a good thing! Especially since in this case, I’m incredibly motivated by what I’m actually building, not by the fact that it isn’t something else. If that makes any sense. I’m a huge fan of the Tallgeese II, and have been ever since 2000. You can understand my disappointment when I first got the original 1/144 kit, which was literally just the Tallgeese I kit with a lighter shade of white and a new head. Things got better when I made the 1/100 Endless Waltz kit, but I just wanted more.

And after ten years of longing, I finally have it. Like always, we’re going to take a look at the upper body of the kit first, before going onto the full product. I feel this makes things a bit less overwhelming.

First, let’s talk about the decals. Here’s a fun fact: This is actually one of only two Gundam Wing kits in the Master Grade line, the other being Wing Gundam. Every other “Gundam Wing” Master Grade is actually an Endless Waltz kit, as far as branding goes, anyway. I guess Japan just likes Endless Waltz more.

Since this is just a Gundam Wing kit, and not an Endless Waltz one, the Tallgeese II is spared the decal hell of the other Wing Master Grades. That isn’t to say the decals here aren’t cool, however. I adore the “TALLGEESE II” and “OZ-00MS2” decals on the shoulders in particular. I wish there was a decal with Treize’s signature, or something. Aside from those decals, most of them are your standard warning decals.

The head is nice, with that awesome Gundam face under the good old centurion helmet. That’s what makes the Tallgeese for me. Unfortunately, there is no shape for the eyes, so you’re probably going to have to use the sticker.

But of course, there’s the Mohawk. I did mine in gold, because I do all of my “mid series upgrade” suits from Wing with it. The trim is a pain to do, but it can be done. It just takes a steady hand and a small brush.

One thing that always bugged me about the old Tallgeese kits was the arm. I never liked the way the fact that they couldn’t go flush on the old kit, and I guess it was just designed that way from the start. The joint is well done, and separates nice and evenly. The Tallgeese also has the standard hand set included with the other Wing suits and the new SEED kits.

One fantastic innovation on this kit is the location of the vernier packs. I don’t have them assembled yet, but for once, they AREN’T attached to the shoulders! This is going to make things a lot easier for poseability, and the old verniers (on both scales) were infamous for coming loose.

The Tallgeese II has been a joy to build so far, and I expect that to continue. Remember, the standard Tallgeese is all you’ll find at FPNYC, so make sure to take a look for

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Master Grade Tallgeese II Preview

I remember back last fall when the Tallgeese MG was announced. I couldn’t even put into words how excited I was. This is something that was LONG overdue, especially since we already got a Katoki-style Epyon two years ago. It just seemed so out of place with the Gundams from the first half of the series. Besides, it’s the Tallgeese. I don’t care what you think about Gundam Wing, if you don’t like the Tallgeese even a little bit, I’m not sure we can be friends. I’ve been excited for this project the moment I saw it.

But guess what? We’re not doing the Tallgeese. We’re doing the Webshop Exclusive Tallgeese II.

Because the Tallgeese doesn’t have pre-cut decals available yet, I decided I’d go with the Tallgeese II first since it actually includes waterslide decals. Gotta love those webshop exclusives. I’m covering it here since it’s the same kit as the Tallgeese I but with a different head. Everything else is the same, save for colors. So let’s take a look!

I’m quite surprised by the amount of parts it comes with. They certainly seem crammed into that tiny little box. No runners are duplicated here, although some are reproduced but with additional parts added on. Bandai was thankfully planning for this release, which is why we saw it so soon, and judging by some of the mold gates, we’ll be seeing a Tallgeese III at some point in the future, hopefully.

The gray color used for all the interiors is interesting, and I’m not sure I like it that much. It’s a very light, neutral gray, which is a color I absolutely love using, but only on certain occasions, and I don’t see this as one of them. Instead, I’m going to use the F-15 Dark Gray I used for the G-Fighter, which will certainly make it look unique.

Despite being a Katoki design, the decals don’t go off the wall crazy here, probably since it’s an animation version. I love the huge OZ-00MS2 and TALLGEESE II decals. They’re just the level of gaudy I’d expect from Treize.

And speaking of Treize, 1/100 scale pilot figures of him and Lady Une are included in place of Zechs! Treize was cool enough, but Une makes an awesome added bonus.

There’s also a spring for the Dobergun. I’m not sure how this works, but we’ll see when I get to it, I guess.

But of course, nothing can be perfect. The head crest needs paint along the trim, which I can tell you now, is going to be a huge pain. At least I’m doing it in gold and not yellow, ugh.

Speaking of painting, this kit has actual painting instructions! These would’ve been really nice for the GM Sniper II Custom, just saying…

I’m REALLY excited for this project, and I think I’ll get through it pretty fast. Thankfully, I’m doing it because I’m excited about the subject matter, and not the fact that it isn’t a huge behemoth. Now I just want a Nataku for it to fight at some point. Remember that you won’t be able to find the TGII at FPNYC, but you should definitely look for the regular Tallgeese when you have the chance!

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Toy Fair 2013 is going down, and we’re not there!

Happy Saturday everyone! Hopefully the snow didn’t mess up your weekend plans too bad, and if they did, I feel for you and can relate. I HAD MUSEUM PLANS TODAY DAMMIT!

As the title implies, the 2013 Toy Fair is going down, and we’re not there because getting a press pass for the event is SERIOUS BUSINESS. But I’m sure a plethora of TF-related images will flood the internet over the weekend, and that in turn will lead to some sort of best of recap later this week! (Blogging 101 folks!) MTV Geek’s already revealed some stuff, like toys based on the Walking Dead, Pacific Rim, Breaking Bad, and Man of Steel already, and I’m sure there’s more to come. We’ll get to that and more later this week, where I promise to only dedicate half the article to Square Enix and Marvel.

As we mentioned before, Jeff Lemiere’s run on “Green Arrow” started this week, and surprising no one, it’s a pretty great debut. Not “Hawkeye” good of course, says a bias Chris. Showing some incredibly good timing, DC Collectible Justice League “Green Arrow” figured has hit shelves! DC Collectibles is promising more articulate figures for 2013, but I guess that’s going to start with the Injustice figures. Still Ollie’s new 52 figure is relatively solid if you know what you’re getting into. It’s definitely influenced by Jim Lee’s take on the character, meaning it will fit in just fine with the rest of the League we’ve seen so far. Arrow will set you back about $20, which is reasonable. In terms of accessories, you obviously get a bow with a “workable” string, and 2 removable arrows. The quiver on his back has a bunch more, but those are permanently attached. Again, it’s probably the best new 52 Green Arrow figure we’re going to get for awhile, as the next couple of GA toys/statues to be released this year seem to be focused on the CW’s “Arrow” show or the “Injustice” game.

A pair of new import figures from Bandai also hit the shelves, based on two of the more popular n0n-Shonen Jump franchises in the Bandai catalog, Megaman and Gundam Wing. After getting several D-Art figures based on the X games, Bandai has released a classic Megaman (“Rock Man” if you’re one of THOSE nerds) figure. Highly articulated? CHECK! Variant parts? You know it! In addition to a sweet figure. Megaman comes with his robot dog Rush  (which no, cannot turn into a car or jetboard sadly) and Met. Great package overall, and definitely worth the cash-money. Hopefully we’ll see a Protoman or Roll in the future. Airman is fine as well Bandai.

The Robot Spirits Epyon is also 5 1/4″ of awesome. Much like Megaman, it’s has an amazing sculpt, is plenty articulated, rocks variant parts and weapons, but most importantly it can transform in a robo-dragon. I love any figure that allows me to type that in an article by the way. The Robot Spirit line is a nice alternative to Gunpla if you’re not familiar with them, as they’re high-end figures that don’t require any assembly, and cover other non-Gundam fracnhises like Evangelion and Code Geass. They’re Gunpla for the lazy mecha fans if you will. We also got in a decent amount of Dragon Ball, Tiger and Bunny, One Piece and Persona 4 currently in stock, if those series are more of your thing.

Final note/shameless plug: I’ll be speaking at C2E2 in Chicago again it’s seems! Expect more on that front come April, where the shameless pimping of said panel will be sickening!

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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!

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Tasmashii Nation Part 2- Robots!

Let’s be BRUTALLY honest here. I love robots. You and I know that very well, but god, how could anything top that Sailor Moon Figuart announcement? Well, at this point, nothing really could, but that didn’t stop Bandai from pulling out all sorts of amazing announcements on the robots side of things. While we may not have gotten much on the quality side here, there’s certainly plenty of it. New Chogokins, new Damashiis, you name it. Some things we never thought we’d ever see in plastic form are getting figures now, and some things that have gone without a Bandai release for far too long are getting credit. Let’s dive in.

Now, I can’t express how AWESOME this is: the Big Order Room from GaoGaiGar! Yes, this has been shown already but come on, this is amazing. Each member presumably comes with one part of the playset. All I wanted was good, poseable figures of the individual robots from GGG, and it looks like my prayers were answered. I can’t WAIT until Volfogg comes out this December.

We’ve also gotten a peek at the two Ryu Sisters form France, KouRyu and AnRyu; and GaoFighGar! I can even see Mic Sounders behind them, too. Oh, the dream of having every robot from GaoGaiGar as a good figure just makes me feel so happy.

In addition to robots from the big three-G, we’ve also seen pictures of Fighbird! Apparently, J-Decker (my personal favorite) won’t be too far behind, but we haven’t seen pictures of him, sadly. Jerks.

One the topic of Super Robots, it looks like we’ll also get Giant Robo (awesome!), Big O (very awesome!), and… Testujin-28 FX (????). Yeah, that last one surprised us all. I guess SRW Z2.2 got people into that series again. All the same, it’s a pretty crazy design that just reeks of 80’s. I love it.

Indeed, it’s taken Bandai quite a look time for this guy: Danguard Ace! While he’s received metal toys from other companies, this is his first ever large-scale toy from Bandai. I have a friend that’s a huge fan of the Force Five version of Danguard Ace, so something tells me he’ll be saving up for one of these.

One of my favorite mecha series, Metal Armor Dragonar, is potentially getting its first foray into the Robot Damashii World!! Before this, the only high-quality figures were the Soul of Chogokin Spec figures, which were incredibly expensive, and everyone but D-1 was a webshop exclusive. Hopefully, that won’t be the case here, because I REALLY want a nice D-2 figure.

The Gundam Double X (and G-Falcon!) just may be seeing the light of day in the Robot Damashii line! Sure, it’s no Master Grade, but silly Japan needs to give Gundam X some love.

But the big announcement for me was on the Gundam Wing display: THE ARIES!! Yes, both color schemes too!! The Aries is one of my favorite grunts from Gundam Wing and it just so happens to be my Zodiac sign, haha. Additionally, there’s an Earth Sphere Alliance Leo hiding out back there. I hope that gets a release, as well.

Curiously, there are still no prototypes for Deathscythe Hell or Heavyarms on display…

Stupid Bandai! They keep making me want all this awesome stuff. I might as well just send them my wallet. Of course, you should open your wallets up for FPNYC when this all comes in stock, just saying…

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Master Grade Gundam Epyon Review

To say I was excited about the Master Grade Epyon would be an understatement. It really came out of left field. Yeah, Bandai was doing the Wing Ver Ka Master Grade last year, but I doubt anyone expected a new design to come out of it, especially before the Tallgeese (which, by the way, Bandai needs to do badly). It’s nice to see a Master Grade get made that was done almost specifically for this line, especially of such a great suit. I WAS going to wait until after I finished the five Wing Gundams to make this, but hey, I got a good deal on it and just had to go for it.

Epyon casts one hell of a silhouette in its new design. Not to say it didn’t before, but damn, now it just cranks all the dials up to 11. I’ll never understand why so many people out there hate Katoki. I just love his crazy sharp, angular designs. Sure, they can be odd, and he does make suits with bizarrely long legs sometimes, but overall, I’d say he’s one of Gundam’s best designers. Plus, he knows how to make designs that look nice in animation AND model/kit form. You can’t say that for SOME people *coughcoughOKAWARAcoughcough*

Epyon has a lot of the things you’d expect from a modern MG, so I’m going to focus on the unique aspects.

First… the wings. Oh man. Remember how the wings on the old kits were just plastic sheets? Well, I’m pretty sure these wings together have more parts than some of the old Epyon kits. They have sliding mechanisms that allow them to spread open. This makes assembly and painting hard, but my god is the final result completely worth it.

A very thick wire is used for the cable on the beam saber. I’m still not sure I like it more or less than the old tube. On one hand, it’s very sturdy, but on the other, it’s a little harder to pose with. Still, the blade at the end of that thing is preeeeetty cool.

Well, the good news about the whip is it’s a LOT easier to build than the old 1/100. The bad news? It’s very fragile and still really hard to paint. Each segment is its own piece now, and I’d advise painting the joints before assembly. The end result is a far more articulate whip. Just don’t play with it too much; it’s not the most structurally sound.

The transformation on this version is so much more fluid than the old 1/100 and doesn’t flop everywhere. My favorite little touch is easily the “teeth” on the dragon heads. Yeah. That’s pretty awesome. Like the Wing Gundam, clips are included to mount this kit on an action base in either mode.

One note of caution if you’re going to paint this kit: for the spikes on the knees, make sure you don’t assemble them before painting. When I did my dry-run, I obviously had to take them off for painting. This created some nasty stress marks, which prevent them from staying snugly on the legs. Be careful!

While I’ve definitely built better kits this summer, I have to say, Epyon was a pretty damn good one. It was a really fun build (I just love using British Crimson) and the final product is one badass looking Final Boss Gundam. If you ever see this at FPNYC and you’re looking for a new Master Grade to do, go right for it. If you don’t, well, I’ll judge you. Harshly.

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Banshee Destroy Mode Review

My favorite enemy giant robot type has always been the “evil version”. I’m not sure if I’ve spoken of this before, but it’s just so appealing to me. It’s basically like using the good guy’s technology against them. A few examples I can think of are Lazengan from Gurren Lagann, Epyon from Gundam Wing, the Turn X from Turn A Gundam, or the GN-Xes from Gundam 00. The idea just feels so… evil. Now, sure, the suit we have here isn’t really the “evil version”, rather, the much-more-sinister-looking evil twin, but still, it’s used that way in the show. Frankly, the Banshee is one awesome mobile suit.
Oh, and before you ask, this is the special edition kit I picked up at Otakon. Structurally, the two kits are the same; this one is just all clear and sparkly and stuff.
First thing’s first; this is pretty much the same kit as the Unicorn. In fact, it seems like Bandai wasn’t considering this suit when they first made the HGUC Unicorn Destroy Mode, because pretty much everything from the Unicorn is included here save for the V-Fin. Either that, or Bandai wasn’t expecting the Banshee to look different from its novel counterpart, but I’ll get to that later.
When the Unicorn and Banshee transform into destroy mode, they gain about two meters of height, which makes this thing pretty intimidating, especially in the darker colors. But honestly? As cool as this thing is, I always found its v-fin to be kind of… silly. I mean yeah, they tend to be, but this thing looks more like Moose Gundam than Unicorn Gundam. Maybe it’s just the thickness of the v-fin on the HGUC, I don’t know. Maybe I’ll sharpen it when I get a regular version.
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Master Grade Wing Gundam Endless Waltz Version continued!

By Loran

Okay, technically speaking, I’m still not done with this kit, so this won’t count as a full-blown review. What do you expect, I’ve never done a Master Grade this way before! All I really have left are the two sets of spare energy canisters for the Buster Rifle to complete. If I may go off on a bit of a tangent here, I love the idea of extra rounds for the Wing Gundam’s Buster Rifle. It always bugged me that it only had three rounds and that was it in the TV show. It’s not like it fired it very often, but still.

On the topic of the Buster Rifle, holy crap this thing is huge, bigger than the one on the regular Wing and maybe even bigger than Wing Zero’s. Unfortunately, that can work against it. Back when this kit was made, slots in the hands for weapons weren’t standard, so there’s nothing really holding the gun in place. You just have to get lucky with the fingers.

The canisters inside the gun were a pain to make, too, because there’s nothing you can really rest them on while painting. Also, because they’re cylinders, sanding them can be very tedious. It’s hard to get a good grip on them. And to make things worse, I get to make six more. Greeeaaaat.

I’ve come to notice that I really need to clean up the paint on this thing. It’s one of the problems I have with having to use my bedroom to build kits in the fall/winter months instead of my basement. The lighting isn’t very good, so paint can come out sort of splotchy without me noticing until I put it under better light.

Thanks to the transformation, the feet get some pretty nice joints that really help it with the “episode title” pose. However, all the joints there can kinda get mashed together just because of how many there are.

The Wings hold up pretty well, thanks to ABS friction joints. I’m worried they’ll get floppy over time, but the way they are right now, they can actually stay in a position.

One thing I was really worried about was the shield. I don’t like it when shields use wrap-around friction connections, namely when I’m actually painting the kit. However, it actually works pretty well here and hasn’t scratched any paint (yet), although I still do need to add some topcoat.

I’m not sure how I feel about the shield’s design, though. I always liked the look of the original, how it could double as the cockpit of a fighter for bird mode. I also liked how the beam saber stored away. Here it just feels like any other beam saber storage system. This is probably one of my least favorite parts of the design.

Once I have everything completed, I’ll cover the Bird Mode.

So far, I’m enjoying this kit, but I won’t be giving all of my final thoughts until I have everything done, panel lined and the decals applied. Once the extra canisters are done, I’ll probably let it sit before I get decals, then start on Epyon. I’m rambling. Remember to come for FPNYC for your Master Grade needs~!

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Tamashii Fest!

By Loran

Oh dear, I believe it’s time for Tamashii Fest!

Usually, I find myself drawn mainly to all the wonderful Tokusatsu stuff at Tamashii Fest, I actually can’t discuss those here because it’s all Sentai stuff, which can’t be distributed in the US because of licensing issues with Power Rangers. However, that’s all well and good, because this time around, most of what’s been catching my attention is Robot Damashi releases, namely all the wonderful new Gundam releases (yes, I do tend to enjoy buying the action figures from time to time). So let’s take a look at some of my favorites…

(Images from CyberGundam blog)

First up, we have the Sazabi to go with the soon-to-be-released Nu Gundam! What, did you think Bandai was going to let this opportunity pass them up? Everyone knows the Sazabi is more popular! Heck, it even got a Master Grade before the Nu. He’s looking pretty mean here, but there’s something about the proportions that just seems… off to me. It’s similar to what happened with the Gouf Custom. It seems a little off-balance. Maybe it’s just me.

There’s also an effect part set for Nu Gundam coming, as well—the Fin Funnel shield! I might just get myself the Nu just to put these to use.

Gundam SEED is going to be continuing for its ten-year anniversary, and we’ll be getting the Duel Gundam with the Assault Shroud! No indication as to whether or not it’s removable, however, though going by some of the seamlines it looks like it can be taken off. Is it sad that I was actually expecting them to try and get more money out of us by releasing both configurations?

Altron Gundam! Heck yes. With the recent announcement of TV version Wing Zero, it looks like we’ll be getting all five Gundams in RD form. If so, that’d be great. This makes me want to track down the (webshop exclusive) Tallgeese II.

The one who stole the show for me and many others was the LEO from Gundam Wing. The Leo has more merchandise than Wing’s other grunts, but hey, that’s still cool by me. I’ll definitely be picking up at least one of these, since the accessories and base included are actually a second weapon set of sorts. Gotta put those to use, you know!

Now here’s one that surprised me: Dunbine RDs! Holy crap I hope these actually end up getting released. I have the High Grade kit of the Dunbine, and it’s… okay. Very flawed. But these action figures look fantastic, especially the Billbine. I plan on getting at least one of them for a Super Robot Wars group shot or something.

Taking a little departure (get it? GET IT?!) from Robot Damashi to Super Robot Chogokin for the last one, we have something I certainly didn’t see coming: Might Gaine! He looks great here, and this gives me hope that we’ll be seeing the other Braves in this format soon (J-Decker, please?). I’d love to have all of them lined up together.

So there you have it. Of course, this is but a small part of what was shown off at the festival. I just wanted to highlight my favorites. As always, hope to see all of these at FPNYC when they get released (provided they don’t end up as webshop exclusives, anyway…).

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Build Log Master Grade Gundam Endless Waltz Version

By Loran

It’s an incredibly well-known fact at this point that Master Grades and 1/100 scale kits in general just aren’t my forte. It’s not that I don’t like them, it’s more than I got into 1/144 scale first, plus that scale has more to offer that I like. But from time to time I make exceptions, be it for a display piece, a swank limited edition, or a “hey, it was cheap” purchase.

But this time I had a different goal. See, as a kid, I never got all five of the Gundams from Wing in the same style or scale. At least, not at once. So right now I’m working to get all of the Katoki Versions of the Wing Gundams, in Master Grade, one at a time. Here’s the obvious first, Wing Gundam.

…who is still being worked on right now. Not only is this the first Master Grade I’ve built in three and a half years, it’s also the first one I’ve properly glued and painted. As such, I’m out of my element here. I’ve also been extremely busy lately so I haven’t quite had the time to dedicate to this project.

This is the “Endless Waltz” version of the Wing Gundam, which is identical to the Version Katoki that was issued back in 2004. The only real difference between the two is the inclusion of two mounts for use with Action Bases, as demonstrated here. One works for MS mode, the other for bird mode. I’ll get into these in greater detail once I finish the entire kit.

My biggest frustration with this kit comes from the color distribution. This thing is tacky. The wings were probably the most time-consuming part of this kit and I still need to do some touch up work. It needs to be done in phases and there are just… so many colors. I was expecting the shoulders to be the hardest part, but I guess I was misled by the large size of the wings.

I’m not sure how I did it but I somehow managed to BS a light, metallic green for all of the transparent bits. I always hated how this was done, but I can see why. It allows for more customization options, but you need to be careful with what you paint it with if you use for paint if you want to retain some sense of translucency. I used a semi metallic green for the top and painted silver underneath. I think it looks great.

One thing I’m really not sure about this kit from a design standpoint is the knee joint. It just looks… off to me. I think that’s largely due to the transformation gimmick, but it looks incredibly unnatural to me. Well, as unnatural as a model of a giant robot can look, anyway…

I figured I would have a much different perspective on this kit if I made one entry while I was building it, and covered everything else once I have the whole thing completed. Despite some overcomplicated, tacky pieces, this has been proving to be a fun project, and I can’t wait until I have all five (or six… or seven) done.

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Master Grade Gundam Epyon Review/Preview

By Loran

Okay, well, I said I was going to buy all of them in order (ie, Gundam Wing, then Deathscythe, then Heavyarms, etc) but I lied. I couldn’t hide my anticipation for Epyon. It’s just so cool! I couldn’t hide my excitement for this thing last year and I certainly won’t hide it now. Naturally, I wish the Epyon Master Grade was something anticipated, otherwise I wouldn’t have bothered to put so much effort into the original 1/100. However, I guess that was a good thing in the long run, since it managed to prepare me for this project, learning how the design works and getting me more used to the colors.

Despite its almost unwieldy box size, this kit doesn’t have as many runners as I expected. In fact, including doubles, it manages to have less than the Wing Gundam! Yet it still costs more for some reason. I suppose it has something to do with the engineering. Not that it matters to me. So long as this kit ends up being just as fun if not more fun to build as the Wing Gundam, my money will be well-spent.

Surprisingly this kit uses just a few polycaps. Yeah, I’m sure this doesn’t surprise those who build MGs regularly, but the last new Master Grade I built was in 2008 and was during the “nah, we don’t need polycaps!” era. I’m glad that passed, personally.

ABS joints are used for the whip. This looks like it’s going to be tedious, but I can guarantee it won’t be as bad as the whip on the old kit was. These can at least be separated and dealt with one at a time, unlike that snake-like monstrosity. Continue reading

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The first new releases of 2012

By Chris Troy

Well okay, the title’s kind of a lie. Most of the new stuffs we’ll be looking at came in towards the end of 2011, but you know, I was busy playing catch up with the best of list and attending MAGfest (which again, was awesome). However most of the awesome new arrivals are STILL in stock (for now!), so we might as well go over what those things are just in case you the reader are interested. Which hopefully, you will be.

On the left, you’ll see a picture of the Robot Damashii Wing Zero Custom (from the Gundam Wing OVA “Endless Waltz”) from Bandai. I’m not exactly how new it is on the shelves of Japan, but we finally have it in at FPNYC, so that’s all that matters right? The Winger Zero Custom joins the Tallgeese 3 as the 2 Wing-related Robot Damashiis we have in, as well as the Gouf Custom and the Gundam Unicorn from the Universal Century line. All 3 of these figures are super articulated, come with a nice selection of variant parts and weapons, and are 2nd only to the Revoltech in overall mecha quality, which is impressive for a line that hasn’t been around as long. We’ve sold out of the One Piece/DBZ/MegaMan/Tiger and Bunny releases super fast, so if you want yourself a super articulated Gundam figure, you best come get them as soon as possible. Continue reading

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New Arrivals: Model kit and Video games edition

By Chris Troy

SHAMELESS PLUG OF THE WEEK: From January 5-8, 2012, my ass will be at the MAGfest X (Magfest.org, which stands for Music and Games Festival) down in Maryland, and I highly encourage you hit the festival up as well! Nobuo Uematsu, the genius behind many a awesome Final Fantasy soundtrack, will be there performing with his new band, Earthbound Papas, as well as many other talented folk (like John St. John, the voice behind Duke Nukem!) , and most importantly, an 8-player X-Men arcade cabinet. It’s a good way to start up 2012, so make sure you register online before the 16th!

So it’s now December, which means shelves everywhere are filled with toys. Forbidden Planet NYC is no exception, as we have a ton of new merchandise in stock, most likely relevant to your interests if you’re reading this website. And yes, after selling out a few times, we currently do have My Little Ponies in stock again.

First and foremost, new model kits, we got them in stock! We’ve restocked Gundam SEED, WING, Unicorn, and Zeta kits, and we finally got the first wave of Gundam Age kits in. In addition to all the new Gundam stuffs, we also have a few model kits based on the various ship from the Shonen Jump hit One Piece. These kits are more Gunplay-like in assembly than say actual model boats, and offer something different to build instead of more mecha (although there is nothing wrong with building mecha. Nothing at all). Kits start at $25 and go up from there, depending on the kit and scale.

Since my shameless plug of the week was video game related, it’s only fair that we discuss some new VIDEYA GAME toys that have been released. The first wave of Gears of War 3 figures in, consisting of main character Marcus Fenix, supporting character turned Gear Anya Stroud, and the 3rd brother of the ill-fated Carmines, Clayton. Each figure is about 7″ in height and has about 30 points of articulation  and comes with a small selection of weapons packaged with them.They’re good figures, but Anya’s face could use some work. That aside, they’re still pretty good figures for less than $20. The 2nd wave should be hitting shelves soon. Continue reading

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Shortpacked: Familiar Faces

By Chris Troy

I’m sure by now, you, the  Forbidden Planet blog reader, are dying to know what I think of the Green Lantern movie, as well as the DC Reboot this upcoming September (If not, please humor my frail ego). Well I saw the GL film  this past weekend and I thought it was a very mediocre flick (I’m not alone apparently, as of this previous Monday, it’s yet to make it’s budget back). Despite a solid cast and some good CGI work, the script wasn’t very good, and that ruined my overall enjoyment of the film. Despite under-performing though, it seems Warner Bros is going ahead with a sequel, which hopefully will have a better plot, and some decent villains (and more cool toys!). Although it’s pretty much a safe bet for the sequel we’re getting Sinestro (it will be nice to see him in the film for more than 5 minutes). As for the “new” DCU this September, I’ll read anything written by Peter Milligan, Gail Simone and Grant Morrison, and it seems the Green Lantern titles are relatively unaffected, numbering aside. That’s good, because man, I’m not even going to get started on what’s wrong with this new Suicide Squad book. However Geoff John and Jim Lee are way overdue to handle a Justice League book, so it’s going to be nice to see that title being readable again. That being said, let that be a clever segway to our first new items this week: The Justice League classics Series 1. Based on the iconic versions of the characters, DC Direct’s 1st wave consists of Green Lantern Hal Jordan, Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. Granted these are all re-releases with new painted jobs, not to mention characters who’ve all have had many a figure before, it’s a welcomed release for any potential new collectors who want a vanilla Batman figure for their desk for book shelf. At $20 bucks a pop, what’s there to complain about right? Continue reading

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