And with every new Gundam anime of course comes the new Gunpla. Three new mobile suits were revealed earlier today, including the new lead Gundam and a couple from the “Prologue.” So, let’s try to check out what kind of build experience we can expect from these kits.
HG 1/144 Gundam Aerial
Do note that these don’t appear to be CG and might actually be the painted kits themselves. Gundam Aerial has a fairly busy design with lots of panel lines, vents, grills, and clear parts. I am expecting a fair amount of color accuracy and good parts separation on the head and torso units based on these profile shots. I can see a lot of layering between the blue, yellow, and gray parts for this. The rather large thighs also stand out and aren’t just a proportion thing in line art.
You may also notice a particular port on the back of the mobile suit. While there haven’t been accessory kits announced as of this post, I assume that this is for storing the shield which attaches to the arm via a similar port. I’ve also read speculations that the shield can split open, based on its design and possible turning points, and can then function as a flight unit, which is then based on what appears to be thruster units on the front.
Here’s a good close up of the torso which shows us the smoke clear pieces on the chest and thighs. It appears that there will be reflective stickers beneath the clear parts and contain the pattern seen in the teaser. The same set of stickers are also used on the strip on the top of each shoulder armor but that’s not much of an issue. Unfortunately, the top of the shield (along the three holes) appears to be a white sticker so that definitely needs painting. I also wanted to say that the head vulcans (or something similar) is made from separate plastic, especially given the lower section of the optics also has gray bits.
As for articulation, given its rather slender design, I’d expect this kit to have a good range. The elbows appear to be single jointed though their sculpt may allow bends beyond 90-degrees. You can also see how the kit can mimic the pose the Gundam Aerial has in the key visual, with one of its legs bent forward and not impeded by the rather small front skirt armor. The ankles might also have excellent rocking motion, similar to those seen in the HG 00 Gundam kit.
Lastly, I would’ve much preferred it if Bandai Spirits used the same shade of blue in the lineart on the kit. I know that’s an easy fix with a coat of paint but still, they opted to use the same blue as the G-Self for some reason.
HG 1/144 Gundam Lfrith
As with Gundam Lfrith over here, it’s mostly white with gray and neon pink accents. It doesn’t have that many smoke clear pieces when compared with Gundam Aerial. The shield is rather plain, like Unicorn Gundam Unicorn Mode plain so you’ll need to put on those washes to bring out the details. There’s also a lot going on with the gray backpack unit, which does appear to be weapon mounting racks.
For potential sticker usage, the pink ones on the knees are definitely stickers. Apart from those, I don’t see anymore, which I guess is a good thing.
Like Gundam Aerial, it appears the shield for Gundam Lfrith over here does a lot more than just blocking shots. Though I can’t make out how it might transform thanks to the same white parts. I could also be wrong and it’s just an overly designed shield. Poseability appears to be standard as well, with a streamlined design with no parts clashing with each other.
HG 1/144 Beguir-Beu
I normally skip non-Gundam designs for these previews but the Beguir-Beu over here is also interesting and gives the strongest Reconguita in G design vibes among these three. The color scheme especially reminds me of the Gaeon or the G-Lucifer. The has a lot of large tick-marks which you’ll definitely need to fill up with black paint to look good.
From these images, I can see that this kit would have a sizeable sticker sheet, especially on those reflective curved lines on the shoulders and hips. The cross pattern on the head and the elongated ovals on the sides of the head might be stickers too.
From these angles, you can see the use of clear parts on the top parts of the rear binders, or whatever those things are supposed to be. There’s also a small clear dome on the top of the chest unit, just above the Gundam face vent-looking detail. The feet also have tiny support stands so I’m not sure how difficult it would be to put this kit in ground poses.
Oh, and let’s not forget those balls at the back of the mobile suit. It either has a lot of ports or a lot of beam emitters so a sizeable amount of effect parts may be included. But that’s just me making speculations.
Outside of Gunpla, Tamashii Nations has also announced Robot Spirits ver.A.N.I.M.E. (of the New generation), as well as Chogokin figures.
As I mentioned in the earlier post, I really like the direction they’re going with these designs. I think it’s safe to say we’ve gone beyond the more conventional (and uninspired) Gundam designs that plagued earlier series (still looking at you Gundam SEED / SEED DESTINY). I really hope these initial kits are a good taste of what’s to come from THE WITCH FROM MERCURY.
No release dates or prices have been announced for these as of this post.