#2012: HGUC 1/144 | RX-78GP01 GUNDAM GP01
When the High Grade Universal Century line started back in 1999, it didn’t kick off with the RX-78-2 Gundam. There were actually 12 kits released before the first Gundam in the line, which is still not the RX-78-2. Having the Gundam GP01 allowed Bandai to release a relatively simple kit yet still have numerous details which wouldn’t be present if they went with the RX-78-2 Gundam. It has decent articulation, with the then-standard 90-degree bend in the elbow & knee assemblies, and standard ball-socket joints for the rest. For a kit released in 2000, Gundam GP01 already utilizes forward shoulder swivels to give it additional poseability, something that’s surprisingly missing in some later releases. For accessories, the kit includes a beam rifle, machine gun, as well as a beam saber and shield. The latter two were molded in white plastic, with the shield relying on seals to replicate the blue sections. In addition, Gundam GP01 also started the trend of including a non-transformable Core FIghter unit to any mobile suit that utilized such system as part of its accessories.