As much as I trash on Gundam SEED, one of the things I really liked from the series are the designs of the original five GAT-X machines. They were unique at that time and not the uninspired designs that came after. That’s why when Bandai Spirits started introducing the HGCE kits to the HGUC line, I had a lot of anticipation that the original five GAT-X machines would eventually get kits.
But it seems like Bandai Spirits is taking its sweet time to complete these “Gundam teams”, the five original Gundams from Gundam Wing being perfect examples, so I assume it would take much longer to get an HGCE Duel Gundam. So, here comes Tamashii Nations offering something that would completely fill this void, at least until that HGCE kit comes out eventually — The Robot Spirits <Side MS> Duel Gundam (ver. A.N.I.M.E.).
What I really like about the Duel Gundam’s design is its simplicity, as it’s the first Gundam to be built under the “G-Project.” Figure-wise, it also helps that these ver. A.N.I.M.E. kits really stick to their anime counterparts and without any additional styling. It is of course more expensive than what would be an equivalent HGCE kit, but everything’s already painted, and more.
Let’s not forget that all ver. A.N.I.M.E. figures come with a lot of accessories and effect parts to display them as close as possible to their on-screen counterparts. For the Duel Gundam, those come in the form of beam effect parts for the beam sabers and beam rifle, as well as effect parts for the thrusters and grenade upon firing.
Still on the same subject, it also comes with an Armor Schneider and its own effect part that could be used by a Strike Gundam (ver. A.N.I.M.E.) figure to replicate that scene that got Yzak Joule his signature facial scar.
Here’s everything that comes with the set and do note that this is only the Duel Gundam, so the Assault Shroud parts are not included. But I’m quite sure they’ll do another release or, likely, a Premium Bandai set for that. In addition, the set also comes with the 350mm “Gáe Bulg” rail bazooka, a weapon originally intended for the Duel Gundam but never used since Zaft stole it.
The Robot Spirits ⟨Side MS⟩ Duel Gundam (ver. A.N.I.M.E.)
January 2023 / ¥7,000
Order via HobbyLink Japan