I Mashed F5 on Premium Bandai! HGUC Phantom Gundam

I am not the most familiar with late Universal Century stories, murky canon status and lack of official English releases withstanding. But I think everyone would agree that the Phantom Gundam from Mobile Suit Crossbone Gundam: Ghost is one of the most recognized designs to appear in the manga. In fact, Tamashii Nations has already released NXEdge Style and The Robot Spirits figures of this mobile suit. But I kept myself from getting these in the hopes of a Gunpla release which would scale better with the rest of my collection. And it looks like all those hopes aren’t in vain.

Because we are finally getting the Phantom Gundam as an HGUC kit! Despite my unfamiliarity with the story and its setting, I think many would easily recognize this mobile suit thanks to the over-the-top imagery of beams being ejected, vented, or what have you, from all over the mobile suit. And yes, this kit definitely has that gimmick. But let’s first go to the basics of the HGUC Phantom Gundam.

I think I’ve vocal on this a couple of times, but I’m not really a fan of green colors on mobile suits, it gives off that grunt look. But it has sort of grown on me with the Phantom Gundam. The red vents and the white accents also complement the design, and slightly gives a holiday-themed color scheme. You will also notice the rear binders that are similar to those of the Victory 2 Gundam which produces its Wings of Light attack. For the Phantom Gundam, it’s basically the same but on much steroids.

And yes, being the Wings of Light on steroids can still be an understatement. So much so that it has its own name, the Phantom Light. Its ghostly appearance is apparently the result of the imperfect integration of the Minovsky Drive system into the mobile suit. This translates to the model kit as a lot of beam effect parts you can attach to the rear binders, skirt armors, and a bunch more — and it also forms the iconic Gundam blade antenna which is absent when not in use. Speaking of heads, it also has the same face-open feature of other Crossbone Gundam units, though I’d wish they’d give parts to build a replacement head piece instead of swapping parts.

Another feature of the Phantom Gundam is its mobile armor transformation, called the Mirage Oiseau / Mirage Bird. It doesn’t make sense as far as aerodynamics goes, but it’s meant for interplanetary travel between Earth and Jupiter. You can also attach the Phantom Light effect parts for this transformation.

Finally, you can see here everything that comes with this kit, and you will notice that the Mirage Oiseau transformation requires a replacement torso piece. While I’m not exactly a fan of replacement parts for transformation, I’ll take this approach given that you’ll also need to replace all those white parts when the Phantom Light is deployed. And yes, we are getting an extra head unit as well.

As per the title of this post, I mashed the refresh button several times before the pre-orders dropped. And I’m glad I did because once my transaction was complete, the listing immediately sold out. Also, they are totally doing an HGUC Ghost Gundam, which is a silver recolor of this guy.

HGUC 1/44 Phantom Gundam
June 2022 / ¥2,500

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