Tagged: Zeta Gundam

Master Grade Zeta Gundam Build log part 2

After a week delay, the Zeta’s build log is back.

While my power was only out for about 39 hours, I still got pretty damn bored. So, I figured, hey, I’ll do some work on the Zeta Gundam! I picked up the parts for the arms and build and sanded them, which took me over two hours. Two hours just for the arms! It probably would’ve been half that had I not done any sanding. It just goes to show you that if you want your kits to look as nice as possible, you need to have almost inhuman levels of patience…

The construction of the arms is fairly straightforward for a transforming kit. A lot of it uses the repeated parts I mentioned before are seen in the arms, so during constructing, things feel insanely repetitive, since you are LITERALLY building the same thing over and over again. But, I suppose building it in the order it was intended makes sure you don’t get lazy and skip over parts.

The joint in the elbow is a very efficient double joint, with a peg going into bottom of the forearm. I really like this idea because it made disassembly INCREDIBLY easy, so painting was much easier! There are a lot of joints in the wrists, too, which will probably make the gun much easier for it to hold.

One thing you might have noticed about the arms here is that I used the stickers for the tiny yellow bits. Frankly, I HATE painting yellow, especially in tiny details like these, so I opted for the stickers. I actually did this on my HGUC Zeta, too. I just don’t find the frustration of painting something that small to be all that rewarding. Stickers are fine, so long as you use them in moderation!

A pair of grenades deploys behind each wrist, but they’re difficult to use right now, since I haven’t built the ammo boxes yet. I’ll cover these in greater detail once the weapons are all completed.

The waist is actually pretty complex, due to the transformation mechanics. There are a lot of moving parts here that, amazingly, all fit together. There’s no floppiness here whatsoever. I’ll be able to better discuss these parts when I move onto the transformation mechanics.

Unlike the last log, I can actually talk about the custom decals now! So far, three are present on the kit. On the waist, we have the Nahel Argama assignment patch. I absolutely LOVE the design my friend made for this. This kit will only have the one on the waist, but I had several others made that might get put on some Unicorn suits.

On the shoulders, we have a “signature” decal based on the ones from the Destiny Gundam set I purchased over the summer. It just reads “Roux Louka, Zeta Gundam: Anti Earth Union Group, 006”, with the 006 representing the Zeta’s model number. On the other shoulder is the emblem from Roux’s pilot suit, which I figured she’d have on her MS proper SOMEWHERE.

I’d put the Zeta at about 40% completion right now. Next, I’ll be hammering out the legs before Thanksgiving, if all goes as planned, then it’ll be onto the wings. Don’t worry, it’ll be done by Christmas! And speaking of, you should pick up some kits for your friends from FPNYC for Christmas… just saying!

Post to Twitter

MG Gundam Mark II Build Log-FINAL

Okay, with my first fully-painted 2.0 all finished, I guess it’s time to jump in.

I don’t think there’s anything about the Mark II in Titans colors I can say here that I didn’t say before. All I can really say now is that with the entire kit built and painted, I now know how well the dark blue paint actually came out.

Holy crap, it ended up really dark! But, I’m very much okay with this. It feels more like the Titans colors would look in the real world, with an almost bitch-dark blue to make the suit seem almost invisible against the blackness of space. That’s how the Titans strike: your dead before you ever notice them.

At least, that’s how it would have been had they not allowed idiots like Jerid into their group…

This kit has a few quirks that were clearly the result of some of Bandai’s experiments early on in the 2.0 releases, some of which leaked over into the main Master Grade kits at the time. If you remember my review of the Destiny Gundam, it had that little tab underneath its waist that can lock in place for leg placement. This kit has no such tab, but the legs still have that joint. It works… decently, I suppose. Frankly, it’s a gimmick I’m glad they quickly moved past.

This kit also has little pistons in the feet! They’re made of chrome and are both need and… kind of pointless? Like, why make JUST these pistons chrome and not make anything else on the kit chrome? It kind of clashes. But hey, at least with these things already molded in the right color, you don’t have to worry about painting them and rendering them useless. That wouldn’t be good…

The articulation in the legs is pretty good. For whatever reason when I took these pictures I couldn’t get the legs to go all the way. Oops. Like the backpack, it uses those infernal fabric tubes. You do get enough length from these to make one or maybe two extras if you mess up but damn, I’m always worried when I work with these.

The Mark II has a pretty decent weapon complement, with a beam rifle with three extra e-pacs, two sabers, a hyper bazooka, a spare bazooka magazine, the Vulcan pod and a shield. There’s nothing really special about the two guns, but be careful when putting the bazooka away! I’m afraid I’m going to scratch the decals right off if I put it in all the way. The Vulcan pod is really cool though, and the plastic has enough stretch to make sure it doesn’t snap.

The shield is awesome, and it has a sliding mechanism that allows for different configurations! I like stuff like this. It doesn’t seem like it’ll scratch up at all, either.

While it’s been outdone by pretty much every other 2.0 to come after it, the MG Mark II 2.0 is a worthy purchase, especially if you’re really into Zeta. Really, the only reason you should ever buy the old Mark II is if you want the G-Defenser from the Super Gundam set… and even then, kind of a lot to pay for one accessory. Still, remember to keep an eye out for this at FPNYC! It’s worth a look.

Post to Twitter

MG Destiny Gundam Build Log Part 1

I’m pretty sure it’s been made clear over the years that I’m not a very big Gundam Master Grade person. I enjoy building them and whatever, but they aren’t really my thing because they don’t usually have the suits I like. However, I’ve pretty much come upon a “system” for how I do my model kits now. In a way, it’s like a pyramid structure.

At the base of the pyramid I have my 1/144 kits. For me, this is almost entirely Universal Century stuff. In this scale, I’ll build anything from the lowliest grunt to the most overpowered main character’s unit, but again, only in UC.

In the middle I have my Master Grades and other 1/100s. This is the kind of stuff the casual fan knows; main character units, the main antagonist’s unit, the main supporting characters, and maybe the most prominent grunt enemy. An example would be if I wanted to do Zeta Gundam, I would build the Zeta Gundam, Gundam Mark II, the Hyaku Shiki, the Qubeley, and the Hizack. That’s probably it, aside from maybe The-O. This is also the scale where I’ll do my non-UC works, since I’m really only interested in the main Gundams from those shows, and well, those are pretty much all that gets made.

At the top of the pyramid is the 1/60s and Perfect Grades, the latter of which I still haven’t done yet. Here I’d do suits that EVERYBODY knows, even people who aren’t into Gundam. I would build the RX-78, the Zeta Gundam, or the Gundam 00, but not something like Astray Red Frame or GP01.

Okay, so why is all of that relevant here? Well, because I’ve now started my first kit from the SEED Universe in Master Grade form: Destiny Gundam. As the main character’s ultimate mobile suit, I figured this would be a suitable entry into that era for me, and will help out with my goal to one day own every star Gundam in 1/100 scale. I also wanted to do a visually impressive Master Grade, and well, this one certainly fits the bill.

This is the “Extreme Blast Version” of the Destiny Gundam, which is by and large the same kit aside from a few changes: one of the joint runners is now chrome silver, some of the inner mechanical parts now have a swirly plastic look to them, some extra effects parts are included along with two 1/20 scale figures of Kira and Shin, and enormous parts for the Wings of Light are included. Really, the last bit alone makes this version the one to buy.

So far, all I’ve assembled is the upper body sans wings and weapons. The construction thus far has been largely straightforward (it IS a five year-old kit after all) but I’m enjoying it nonetheless. The chrome parts are a bit frustrating, since there’s no way to avoid scarring because the parts weren’t designed to be chrome. Continue reading

Post to Twitter

HGUC GM III Review

by Loran

Like its younger, better-looking Gundam brother, the GM II has gone pretty unappreciated in the model kit world. There was one plastic kit back in the original Zeta Gundam line, and at least one conversion kit made for the HGUC GM. While I do like its design overall, it’s really not that much different from a regular GM. Even technically, some of the GM II units are just upgraded One Year War stock, and even the new units aren’t that much better than the original suit. Still, it’s a GM, and every series has to have its lovable “redshirt” good guy unit.

Chances are, the average person won’t be able to tell a GM from a GM II if they just saw them in passing, aside from maybe differences in the color scheme. It’s not a very exciting design, especially if you already have a regular GM. Maybe Bandai just wanted to see what the kitbashers came up with for stuff based on the regular GM. Or they just wanted more money for B-Club, who knows.

By and large this is just the GM III kit with a few of the runners changed. Nothing wrong with that, but one thing does end up a bit odd: the hip armor. The hips still have the holes for mounting the missile launchers from the GM III, but there’s nothing to go there. It seems like a bit of an oversight, but maybe Bandai’s planning some new variant that will actually use them. What that variant is, I haven’t the slightest.

As far as articulation goes, everything that was said about the GM II holds true here, so no complaints in that department. However, while the GM III got two four extra hands (two fists and two open hands), the GM II has none of those. Strange considering the GM II is a cheaper kit, but I guess they wanted to make it as cheap as possible. Continue reading

Post to Twitter

Review: HGUC Hizack

By Loran

As my last review pretty much stated, I love cannonfodder. But you know what I can’t stand? When a series doesn’t give nearly enough-I’m looking at you, Zeta Gundam. Really, there are so many different suits in the show and only three of the major cannonfodders got HGUC kits. Yeah, you could count the Rick Dias but it didn’t show up in cannonfodder capacity. It’s a shame, too, since they’re some great designs, and the only missing HGUC one that’s gotten a kit recent is the Nemo (Master Grade). Not only that, it’s been several years since these kits came out so they’re starting to show their age.

The Hizack has got to be one of my favorite designs Zeta Gundam, and probably one of my favorite Zaku-based units from a series. It’s like a Zaku built with Federation technology (which well, is sort of what it is). It isn’t as intimidating as most Zakus but it has a certain charm to it, and its name sounds like you’re calling for someone. It got two releases in the HGUC line-Titans Green and EFSF Blue. Mine is a actually a Green Hizack in Blue. Fancy that.

The design of the suit is basically an updated version of the Zaku to fit in with the rest of the suits from Zeta. It has all the crazy tubes of the typical Zaku II but some of them are in different places now. For one, the ones that would move from the thighs into the lower legs are now on the knees and on the upper arms instead. Normally you’d think removing the cables from the legs would make them more articulate, but that unfortunately isn’t the case-they’re actually less poseable than most Zakus at this scale. Continue reading

Post to Twitter

Review: HGUC Gaza C Haman Custom

By Loran

In the Zeta Gundam movies, only one new mobile suit was really recognized. Sure, we got the occasional custom-colored GM Custom or GM Cannon, but those were really just brief cameos. Heck, even the rarely-seen blue Hizack from the series got a ton of appearances, but my guess is that’s because Bandai wanted to push the new HGUC kit they just released. Only one fully-new got considerable screentime, and because of the pilot, it got a kit-I’m talking about Haman Khan’s Gaza-C.

The Gaza-C is a really odd suit that I could never quite figure out. It’s ugly, that’s for sure, but it’s got a certain charm to it. I guess it looks that way because Axis didn’t have the resources to make nice-looking suits so they just made a ton of ugly ones. Haman made her debut in the series piloting one of these, but hers was the same color as all of the other units. For the movies, they changed it to her Qubeley’s lighter pink color scheme, probably to give her a more suitable mobile suit, but we know the real reason was just to sell more toys.

The head and body of this kit are all one unit, due to both the design and the transformation gimmick. Unfortunately, neither of them have any side-to-side movement as a result. The backpack (if you could call it that) is really tall and has a large fin sticking out of the back which makes displaying this thing pretty annoying, and getting it all to fold down all the way is a pain. Also, the mass of tubes on this kit have a tendency to pop out a lot. However, it’s always nice to see clear green parts and they’re used pretty damn well here on the monoeye and… other camera thing. Continue reading

Post to Twitter

Movie Review: Zeta Gundam Trilogy

By Loran

Ah, Zeta Gundam. Widely considered by fans and critics to be one of the best-if not the best of all the classic Gundam shows. I personally think the original series wins that title, but Zeta is still pretty awesome in its own right. Now, the original Gundam movies are probably the best compilation movies ever made for any anime. While they’re long (I’m talking Lord of the Rings long), they’re fantastically done and tell the story in a much more condensed fashion with all of the stupid filler cut out (White Base needs salt, anyone?) with some great little scenes and redone animation for a few bits.

The Zeta movies, however, were kind of a mixed bag. They were made to commemorate the 20th birthday of the show, though they’d been in the making for quite a few years. The plan was the same as the original movies-a condensed compilation of the series. However, these didn’t seem to do it as well as the original series movies did. Continue reading

Post to Twitter