Gaijin Gunpla

It’s that time of year again! The third week of May brings to Japan some very pleasant weather but more importantly it heralds the first ‘big’ trade show of the year for those who love models, the Shizuoka Hobby Show. Like I have for the past few years I boarded a train early in the morning to take me to Tokyo Station where I jumped on a Hikari Bullet Train bound for Shizuoka.

While on the train it occurred to me that I didn’t really know what I would be seeing there. Last year, the day before the show was set to begin, Bandai revealed the RX-78-2 Ver 3.0 and so I knew I would be seeing a lot of that at the show. This year I didn’t really know anything, except for an educated guess about the Neo Zeong, so once on the train I pulled out my iPhone and just surfed the net in case there was news of any kind.

And there was. News of another Ver Ka. News of a whole new line of models. And even news of a PG release. Two out of those three rumours turned out to be true.

Hopping off the Bullet Train we joined the line of people waiting for the shuttle bus which would take us to the event hall. It’s only a ten minute drive so we were at the hall just at 9:30 AM when the event opened. Walking in I headed immediately for the Bandai booth.

Eager to determine exactly what the big ‘reveal’ was at the show I headed towards the display that had the most people crowding around it.

And there it was. The big news was a big kit from a new line. Dubbed the Reborn One Hundred Line, or RE/100 for short, this is an entirely new category of Gundam and to launch this they chose a Mobile Suit people have been longing for for quite some time, the MSN-04 Nightingale.

Above the kit they had a video playing on a loop showing the Nightingale and giving details about the new line of kits.

From the video, and judging from what I saw of the display, it seems Bandai is looking to give us kits in 1/100 scale, made famous by the Master Grade lineup, but with simpler engineering which basically means no inner frame. Looking at the arm and leg section that Bandai had displayed for all to see it appears the assembly is much like an HG kit.

There is no inner frame but HG style Poly-cap joints wouldn’t cut it when it comes to holding big kits such as the Nightingale together so Bandai has come up with a new design. The kit looked good, though admittedly not as good as an RG kit or even an MG kit but the popularity of this new lineup will come down to two things, 1)the Mobile Suits they choose and 2)the enjoyment found in the build. Looks like they started off strong by choosing the Nightingale. The next release will be the Gundam MK-III.

And No. 3 will be the GP04 Gerbera.

My honest feelings about this bit of news I learned at Shizuoka? Well, I’m torn. I love the idea that we can be seeing the big suits in 1/100 scale (Kshatriya anyone?), but I really love just how much detail we have seen in the RG line and the more recent MGs like the Sazabi Ver Ka. I’m keeping an open mind.

The next rumour to confirm? Another Ver Ka is on the way. This one turned out to be true and actually it’s coming much sooner than I would have thought. In August we will see the Hi-Nu Gundam Ver Ka!

Really the big surprise here is just the timing of the announcement. After the Nu Gundam Ver Ka in 2012 and the Sazabi Ver Ka in 2013 we know what to expect here and judging by what I saw at Shizuoka no one should be disappointed.

Like the last two Char’s Counterattack Master Grade kits this one has the details and proportions to match as well as plenty of gimmicks.

Yes, it will take an LED (and yes, it’s sold separately) and it will feature opening panels on various parts on its body. I’m excited for this guy but what makes me even more excited? This being an August release frees up the December release to be something even bigger. I wonder what Bandai has planned…

But after these two kits there were no surprises at the show. All the other kits on display I had already been aware of in some form or other. While that is a little disappointing I did enjoy seeing them. For example, the RG Z’Gok is going to be great.

You can see they have it in the display doing all its famous poses and the box art was also there for everyone to see.

Like the Exia, Bandai has an all new RG frame for this release.

I’m excited for July (and a little disappointed the next RG wasn’t revealed at the show)

The MG I wanted most to see? The Turn-X.

I was quite surprised how much bigger than the Turn-A it was. And that it comes apart!

This guy will split into nine sections and a stand will be included so you can set them up like this display if you are so inclined. Nice!

Beside that was the Gundam Build Fighter wall featuring all the kits to date (plus some kit bashes of course) as well as this not so little big of text.

If I’m reading this correctly (and everyone will correct me if I’m not) it says that the new series is under production. This will please GBF fans. As for models though, we are getting High Grades.

The Gouf R35.

The Amazing Exia.

And the Wing Fenice Ricotta (just kidding, it’s Rinascita).

They had the Gundam Build Fighter kits under really strong lighting that made it difficult to get some nice pictures of. That also applied to the HG Gundam Airmaster.

It transforms.

As I reached the end of the GBF and HG display that there were no new Gundam Build Fighter Master Grade kits at the show. At the Gunpla Expo last year they had three MGs on display and they came out very quickly one after the other. At this show, no GBF MG news at all.

To the right of the GBF stuff was the Gundam UC stuff.

Episode 7 hits the theatre during the Shizuoka Hobby Show so Gundam Unicorn was heavily represented there. But it’s the new kits we wanted to see.

The Zssa (katakana has it written as Zusa)

The Zeta Plus Unicorn Colour version (though in this case it was the no-color-whatsoever version).

The Schuzrum Galluss (did I get that right?)

And the Rozen Zulu, a kit we have seen before, but this is the Episode 7 version.

But really, when it came to Unicorn kits I just wanted to see this.

The NZ-999 Neo Zeong.

Hahahahaha! It’s so big it’s ridiculous. Remember the HGUC Sinanju and how big that was for an HG kit? Hahahaha.


This will be fun.

And after that the only series that needed checking up on was Gundam Thunderbolt.

Sweet box art as always.

And I absolutely love the colours they’ve done the Zaku I in.

Yes, please.

With everything Gunpla ogled over, photographed, and drooled on a second time I left the Bandai booth but stopped to check out what they have going on for the 35 anniversary.

That 35th anniversary logo will be making plenty of appearances this year I believe.

Categories: Events, Life in Japan

30 Responses so far.

  1. Frankon says:

    Exia Amazing looks very Nightingelish… Ok joking aside.
    I’m pretty disapointed that noone managed to snap a picture of the inside of Nightingale binders…

    Second note. Cannot imagine the setting for 2nd season of BF. They lost all plavsky particles so how to batle? Still the Gouf is a must get.
    About Thunderbolt. Those are the sweetes design ever. We need the MG of the suits. (also the coloring of Zaku I gave me ideas of the right color for my zaku tank).

    So the last gimick of the Neo Zeong was shown (my bet the replacable wired guided arm cannons)

    • Brian says:

      Well at the end of the last episode, they discovered how to artificially reproduce it so Gunpla battles can go on. It could, however, be a prequel too so who knows.

      I’m not sure if the final gimmick for Neo Zeong was shown, but I hope it’s replacing hands with other hands for sure…or those four other arms on its back! (or at least, articulated hands).

      TURN-X!!! Cannot wait. Z’gok!!! Cannot wait. Hi Nu!!! Cannot wait.

      I remember Strike Freedom got announced in August (along with Sazabi Ver Ka). Zeta got announced about 10 days after RG Justice was released. So we’ll get an announcement for #17 in due time.

      Pretty surprised to see no P-Bandai items. And as for that supposed PG Unicorn…didn’t bet on it coming to the show.

      • Frankon says:

        yeah the lack of P-Bandai is puzzling…
        (i could live with them if you could order overseas with them)

      • Michael says:

        Keep in mind that prime release window – the holiday one is still empty. However, on Sunday, the last day of the exhibition, the last Unicorn episode will be released. A good day to announce something big, Unicroen-related for the holidays, eh?

      • Frankon says:

        And the P-Bandai wave hit us.
        MG HI Nu ver KA HWS
        MG FA Unicorn Red Psychoframe ver
        HGUC Neo Zeong Effect Part.

        Lets see whats next.

      • Kyle465 says:

        There are more P-Bandai items. Just look on

        So… many… P-Bandai… items…
        I… saw… 17… so… far…

      • syd says:

        I just go to the p-bandai site. I’ve already ordered myself the RG Astraea parts, RG Astraea Type F, and more! I’m a sucker for the limited stuff.

      • Kyle465 says:

        Well, there’s no P-Bandai in English so I pretty much don’t have a choice and it’s hard to find a site which has them not sold out and I actually kinda regret not learning Chinese cause I saw there is a site for Hong Kong :p

      • syd says:

        HI Kyle, has them in english. I don’t know if they have the same stuff or not though.

      • Kyle465 says:

        Thanks syd, now I know I can buy kits that went out of stock but I have another question; does accept USD also and not just japanese yen?

  2. Archer says:

    My decision is correct, I didn’t buy Nu Gundam and it turns out Hi Nu is being released, I’ll be waiting for you Hi NU and of course rinascita, but Syd I think the picture a bit jumble there, the Amazing Exia position is a bit wrong
    BTW I’m pertamax

    • Raven Zhef says:

      It was a bit of a no-brainer to anybody that the Hi-Nu was going to be released after the Nu Ver. Ka was released. My question is simply whether it will contain all the psycho-frame. The Fenice Rinascita looks incredibly sharp, but it will certainly be much better in MG form. Besides, the mouthplate is wrong, it should be Zeta-ish, not traditional Gundam-ish.

      And btw, you are not ‘pertamax’, which means you are neither the first to post here, nor are you the fuel company. I’m sure you mean the former, and as such please refrain from saying that. It is annoying.

  3. Darth Mingus says:

    RE/100 kits look like a blank canvas, perfect for adding plaplate and panel lines. There are some really cool customs done with HGUC kits so I look forward to what people can do with the new line. In fact, I just ordered some BMC micro chisels to do nice panel lines.

    I am a bit disappointed by the Hi-Nu. I was hoping for more of a Nu Ver Ka vibe. The Hi-Nu looks like it dropped the colour separation and exposed frame to match the look and feel of the RE/100 Nightingale.

    Apparently, the next PBandai exclusive is the MSA-011BST. The one with the huge boosters for feet. Too bad, I always wanted a MG of this kit but 105k Yen is a bit too steep, especially without discounts.

    • Frankon says:

      Agree. The Nightingale screams to me – “Panel line me!” (escpecially the back). Cutting down on pizza and getting this baby. Hopefully HLJ will soon add it.

      Abaout MSA-011BST. Its 10.5k Yen.

  4. XenoIrish says:

    I started building the HG 1/100 gundam wing kits way back, the RE line looks kinda similar….personally i’d rather have MG, but it’s unreasonable to expect every suit to get such a release. If this lets some lesser known, or cost prohibitive, suits to get made in the 1/100 scale then that’s a good thing.

    I bet a lot of people will be kit bashing the armor from RE onto MG frames for some great stuff in the future though.

  5. GNParticles says:

    Thanks for the super report Syd. Any idea when the big Neo Zeong is going up for pre-order at HLJ?

  6. Mechagaikotsu says:

    Awesome post! This year seems to be a year of experimentation for Bandai, with the RE/100 line on top of that colossal Neo Zeong. I agree on been torn about the new 1/100 line. I was hoping for an increase in detail and design like the ver. 3.0 not the other way around, but the possibility of a 1/100 Kshatriya is an awesome possibility. If the Hi-nu is scheduled for August, I hope Bandai has something juicy in mind for December!

  7. JPO says:

    Hey Syd, you posted a pic of the Nightingale where you were talking about the Amazing Exia.

  8. kefka says:

    Didn’t a PG Unicorn get announced

    • Raven Zhef says:

      Rumored. It’s possible though, to commemorate the last episode of Unicorn, and as this year’s big December kit.

    • Frankon says:

      The best moment to announce PG Unicorn would be on sunday before (or after) episode 7 screening.

    • Chris says:

      I would flip if that did occur.. a PG Unicorn.. a 1/100 Nightingale, and a Turn X… Dang my poor wallet..

      Hi Nu ver Ka… I am sorry but those legs kinda turn me off from the kit.. They are just too fat.. Though I am not surprised it was announced.. Still need to pick up Phenex and Gundam X…

      • ChopperDave says:

        Well, the Hi-Nu ver Ka. looks exactly like the original art for the Hi-Nu, which I think quite a few people will be interested in. IMO the first Hi-NU MG we got was WAY too influenced by SEED and the like. Plus it just wasn’t very good.

        That being said, I would love to see a PG Unicorn. It’s not my favorite design ever, but it’s cool, and I would love to build another PG.

      • Chris says:

        Here is the thing. I love Hi Nu the old MG I thought was one of the better MG kits released and it was a great build. The legs were just right in proportions I did not see many influences from SEED just a little slim down of the mech which I felt needed it. But its also one of those kits I don’t think needs to be replaced.. Though I would not mind a V2 in its place, in fact I would like to see one over another Hi Nu.. (Mine is just fine on the shelf…)

      • ChopperDave says:

        Well, we will just have to agree to disagree on this one my friend. I love the aesthetics of the Ver. Ka Hi-Nu, chunky legs and all.

    • Kyle465 says:

      If there is a PG Unicorn, hopefully the limbs don’t lock in place when in destroy mode.

  9. Frankon says:

    The gimmicks of the Neo Zeong were shown.
    Lets see. Its a mix of Reborns Gundam, Val Valro, Dendrobium, Stargazer…
    So from the top:
    Deployable 4 hands from the back
    2x Val Valro mega particle guns in the shoulders.
    Weapon containers? (or just massive mega particle guns) as in Dendrobium.
    Some Psychoframe generated ring as in stargazer.

  10. Stephen says:

    The new line is just like the old HG 1/100 Line of kits, made famous by the Wing, G, and X series. The only difference are the units.

  11. andrew says:

    hmm if those re lines are like the no grades of the gundam seed or OO lines then why not kitbash to give it that extra detail:)

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