Tuesday, July 19, 2011

HG 1/144 Exia Part 1

Reminiscent of an older type design format

Instead of "starting on", I think I should label this as "finishing up" on an old Gunpla work left on the shelves since a very long time ago. ^^;

From this HG 1/144 Gundam Exia, a few parts were selected to be worked on for my All Exia Project back in April 2009. After the whole project was concluded in February 2010 (just the blade part for all the GN Swords in that extension actually), what remained of the kit had been sitting in the box since then. I figured it has been quite a while since I last worked on a HG kit (since early May after GN-X to be exact), it would be good to pick up something that is a lot "lightweight" in terms of workload and part count - still fresh from the recent conclusion on four Master Grade kits. ^^

Another reason that prompted this resurgence of interest in this old kit is the fact that we are going to get HG 1/144 Gundam Age-1 in September. ^^ I'm getting the Advanced Grade version of this new Gundam because the images showing its runners and part separation seem pretty interesting and promising. I'm not expecting much from it, looking at AG's price range, I think I'm waiting to experience the special features of the new design, but maybe it'll turn out to be a direct "descendant" of Gundam Double O Season One's First Grade series. ^^; Before I get to see more of it, I'm keeping all my comments about it to myself.

Anyway, seeing the HG version of Gundam Age-1 really reminded me just how fast time had swooshed by after the first season of "Gundam Double O". For me, this HG of Gundam Exia is still pretty much like a new kit, but looking at it using the standards we have today, it has so many features that are no longer used on newer kits from the entire High Grade series, be it the second season of "Gundam Double O", its movie or HGUC. I did mention this before, in the introduction for HG 1/144 00 Gundam and O Raiser back in February this year. The lack of polycap parts and ABS runner are two features that you don't see on a small-sized HG like this since a while ago. ^^

Be it market force or Bandai's own determination for improvement, the change in Gunpla design is almost too fast for me to catch on now. ^^; Back in the old days when I was assembling those old school 1/144 kits from "Gundam X" and "Gundam Wing", the part design and assembly method seems all the same to me. XD Even the larger 1/100 scale lines were pretty much all the same as well if not mistaken. XD Looking at how things are nowadays, that is definitely something we won't be getting again. At some point in Gunpla history, the train switched from steam engine to fusion reactor, and I'm in the train going, "Too fast too furious!"

It'll be very exciting to anticipate if HG 1/144 Gundam Age-1 would be able to surpass HG 1/144 00 Qan[T] in terms of Gunpla design. ^^ I always view 00 Gundam and 00 Qan[T] as the pinnacle of the HG series, so I'm very interested to see if Gundam Age-1 has any special feature to offer as compared to those two. ^^

Gundam Exia seems to be left out of the mentioning again and again. XD But no worries, being a big fan of this Gundam, the love for its GN Sword and fierce appearance is enough to render all comparison of it invalid. That's it right there. XD

Box art

Introduction of the kit on the sides of box.

If you can believe this, Gundam Exia is the only kit in its series where the action pose on the manual's cover not matching with its box art.

The action pose on the top right cover in the center spread of the manual also ended up as the cover design of the first Gundam Double O Gundam Marker Set. ^^

Content, with the painted parts from the All Exia Project.

Runner A - The usual multi-color runner. Contains all the parts that not white or gray (Duh~ ^^;).

(Left) GN Shield that is molded as a single part is the first painting challenge already ^^
(Right) Clear parts for the GN Drive and Condensers are painted using green highlighter first.

Runner B - Contains all the white parts.

Parts such as the GN Drive cone and GN Blades need quite a bit of paint work as well.

(Left) A one-piece part for the beam saber needs painting, but is still better than zero-piece part for the same weapon in 00 Gundam no doubt
(Right) All the beam sabers and daggers' handles are molded as single-piece parts, which is pretty cool.

Runner C - ABS runner containing all the gray parts, including those for major joints on the kit.

(Left) Details on the rear face of the shield
(Right) Sharp design for the spread palm.

Runner D - A small runner containing two soft parts for the GN Stripes on the upper arms.

Foil sticker sheet
The large white piece for the center of the shield is a convenient escape for a major white-on-blue paint work ^^

All the processed parts from the All Exia Project.

All the painted clear parts are kept on its little portion of Runner A to prevent the highlighter paint from being rubbed off easily when stored in the box.

All parts separated from their runners.

Starting Continuing on the work of this kit in the next posting. ^^

No comments: