It’s been a couple of months since the mobile gacha game Mobile Suit Gundam U.C. Engage went live and since then, several new mobile suits and variants have been introduced. Everyone, including myself, has been amazed by the Moon Gundam animated cutscenes and are now wishing for an anime adaptation more than ever.
The other storyline gaining traction from this game is that of the main character Peche Montagne (I hope that’s the correct English spelling of her name). She’s present in several arcs spanning from 0079 and now, 0082 as she works for Anaheim Electronics as a test pilot for a fork of the Gundam Development Project, the Engage Zero or Gundam Development Test No. 0.
We got a model number this time, the RX-78MS00Z, which has similarities to the model numbers from the Gundam Development Project, e.g. RX-78GP01. If you recall, this ‘fork’ of the Gundam Development Project was brought about by the Federation’s demand for more high mobility and high-performance mobile suits. As such, engineers from the former Principality of Zeon were brought in for its development. The code name “Engage Zero” also means the combination of both Federation and Zeon technology to produce a unique mobile suit. This is the concept behind the model number mentioned earlier, with the “RX” part representing the Federation and the “MS” part being Zeon.
The first variation we see in the game is the Additional Booster unit which are two large booster pods mounted at the back. The rear waist armor also opens to deploy even more verniers for extra maneuverability at high speeds.
We also have the Engage Gundam which is, as the official website explains, a hypothetical upgrade to the Engage Zero if they went with this mobile suit development path. It combines technology from both the Engage Zero, which focuses on high mobility combat, and Gundam GP00 “Blossom”, which is a high-performance general purpose mobile suit.
We also have an upgrade to this hypothetical upgrade, the Super Engage Gundam, which combines a support unit to the Engage Gundam. And if the name and the design appear to be familiar, well because it is. The support unit they’re talking about is the G-Defenser from Zeta Gundam, which docks with the Gundam Mk-II to form the Super Gundam.
Other variants and option equipment for the Engage Gundam include the Cannon Equipment designed to make the mobile suit a range support unit tough the use of high-powered weapons at the expense of mobility. The cannons used in this configuration take inspiration from both Project V’s Guncannon and Guntank. It even has Zaku II-inspired leg-mounted missile pods.
Then we have the Heavy Armor Equipment which applies the FSWS or Full Armor System and Weapon System technology to the Engage Gundam. But unlike the Chobham Armor of the Gundam NT-1 or the Full Armor Gundam from Gundam Thunderbolt, the additional armor units are not detachable and are built to the mobile suit itself, just like the Heavy Gundam. This allows for a not-so-significant decrease in mobility while still keeping improved durability.
Jumping many years later before the events of Gundam F91 and into the mobile suit development competition between Anaheim Electronics and SNRI, we have the MST-99A Type-99 Assault which, I assume, is one of the mobile suits submitted by Anaheim Electronics to compete with SNRI’s Formula Project. Now I know beta canon has the MSK-120 which is an abomination of a mobile suit and I’d rather have this guy take its place in canon.
The Type-99 is a derivative of the Hyaku-Shiki or the Type-100, despite using a lower number for its name, and is supposedly the culmination of mobile suit technologies in the past. This Assault variant primarily takes the vanilla Type-99 and replaces the legs with booster units, similar to the S-Gundam Booster Unit Type.
What am I getting at with this list of good-looking mobile suits? Well of course, the Gunpla! I really think both the Engage Zero and Engage Gundam, and their variants, have good designs. The same is also true with the Type-99 and I’m sure many would love to get ahold of Gunpla for these. That said, I also understand that not everyone is aware of Gundam U.C. Engage, especially with its exclusivity to Japan. There’s also the whole gacha concept that this game heavily relies on for revenue, so they’d want people to purchase stuff in-game instead of model kits.
Unless this game really blows up, I won’t hold my breath for model kits of these designs anytime soon, which is quite a bummer. Oh well.