Tuesday, April 29, 2014

BB Senshi Sangokuden Kochu Gundam Part 1

The hefty old guy

Back to a bit of Gunplaing with an old BB Senshi Sangokuden kit after various action figure reviews. ^^

Released in April 2009, this is Kochu Gundam (黄忠ガンダム) from the Gunpla-comic line. That explicit "identification" is not exactly needed, as the character didn't make it to the TV anime "Shin" series like Koshin Gyan did. So, discounting its recolored version in Gokoshou Gundam Ryukiho Set (五誇将ガンダム・龍輝宝セット), this is the only version of Kochu Gundam released in the BB Senshi Sangokuden line.

Much like Bacho Blue Destiny, Kochu Gundam only emerged in the second chapter of the comic, called "Clash of the Heroes Chapter" (英雄激突編). After Ryubi Gundam and Sousou Gundam went missing after the Battle of Red Cliffs, the kingdom of Giga under the leadership of Sohi Gundam and Giga Taifu Shiba-I Sazabi, Sousou Gundam's son went on a campaign to conquer neighboring lands, thrusting the world into another round of chaos and turmoil. While the warriors from the kingdom of Shou fought to save the civilians from Giga's army, Bacho Blue Destiny went on his one-man quest to seek revenge over the destruction of his homeland. The comic chapter featuring Kochu Gundam brought a temporary close to the encounter between the three factions, with the surprise "appearance" of Ryubi Gundam in the form of Ryukiho (龍輝宝), which gave the warriors of Shou additional strength to force Giga's army, under the command of Joko Serpent to halt their invasion. The story then continued in Joko Serpent's chapter, which featured a showdown between the Giga commander and Bacho Blue Destiny, before he decided to retreat completely, much to Sohi Gundam's displeasure.

In the midst of all the conflicts, Kochu Gundam's contribution was very minor I would say, despite his awesome character design. ^^; Unlike Bacho Blue Destiny, who was featured very prominently across three kits, the most exposure for Kochu Gundam was in his own comic chapter, but even that was little. Besides Bacho Blue Destiny "hijacking" much of the story focus, quite a bit of space was dedicated to the emergence of Ryukiho, and the formation of Gokoshou Gundams (五誇将ガンダム) for the first time. That lack of exposure certainly makes him being one of the five members of Shou's "Super Gundam Team" somewhat unbelievable, even though I know that that had to happen anyway due to how the character was designed in the original story of "Romance of the Three Kingdoms". ^^; It would definitely be better if the character development and focus were written to be a bit more balanced between those appearing in the story.

From just the character design of Kochu Gundam, I think he has the potential to become a really interesting character. He's designed after Gundam Mk-II, which means he's a much closer "relative" to Ryubi Gundam, who is based off Gundam RX-78-2, than Chouhi Gundam (Zeta Gundam), Kan-U Gundam (ZZ Gundam), Koumei ReGZ (ReGZ, obviously ^^), and Chou-un Gundam (V2 Gundam). Interestingly, despite Gundam Mk-II being a successor to Gundam RX-78-2 in the Universal Century, Kochu Gundam is set to be the eldest of the gang, which is rather funny in my opinion, but that's actually true to his character setting from "Romance of the Three Kingdoms". ^^ He's also the only member of the five Gokoshou Gundams who emphasizes range attack over close combat, even though he does carry a sword. That certainly makes him a more unique character than all his sword-slashing-spear-thrusting-halberd-hacking comrades, but I suppose the skills of a marksman wouldn't look as heroic and bombastic as all the sword-slashing-spear-thrusting-halberd-hacking action from his comrades. XD

As a model kit, Kochu Gundam is quite amazing. It's not Gundam Mk-II in BB Senshi Sangokuden character format, but Super Gundam instead. ^^ The hefty content is almost disproportionate to its price tag of 630 Yen (inclusive of tax), especially when compared to other kits like Choko Zaku III, and even Bacho Blue Destiny. I used to joke that much of Kochu Gundam's cost was shared by the subsequently released Sonshoko Gerbera, because for the same price, the content of that kit is disproportionately little. ^^; I'll probably mention this again when I start to work on that kit in the future. ^^

Introduction of the kit on the box sides.


The comic/instruction manual.

Chouhi Gundam jokes about Kochu Gundam's age, much to the latter's annoyance. ^^

Assembly of Gokoshou Gundams.

All runners of this kit.

A look at the different runners in this kit:

Runner A1

(Left) A small one-piece dragon head part for the helmet. ^^
(Right) The chest plate is just one of Kochu Gundam's asymmetrical armor pieces.

Very nicely molded rivet details on one of the two helmet parts. I suppose the rivets are there to symbolize older technologies, which in turn reflects Kochu Gundam's age. ^^

Two huge one-piece parts to form Kochu Gundam's shoulder blocks. The molded details on the surface, especially the entire dragon head looks amazing. ^^

Completely hollow space behind the parts.

Runner A2

(Left) More scale armors with rivets after the chest plate and helmet pieces on Runner A1. ^^
(Right) The optional targeting sensor part. While the sensor itself is located on the opposite side, it's a part that references Gundam Mk-II's Vulcan Pod I think, which is also asymmetric in design.

(Left) A rather small V-Fin for Kochu Gundam, especially when compared to the likes of Sonshaku Physalis Gundam, and Asurao Moukaku Gundam.
(Right) Molded spring parts for the backpack platform when the Ryuurin Gouretsukyuu (龍燐剛烈弓) finishing move is deployed.

One-piece parts for Eishinkyuu (鋭真弓) and its arrows.

The character's name molded on the bottom of the feet parts.

Runner B

(Left) Unlike Kan-U Gundam, Kochu Gundam's (shorter) beard is molded onto his front face part. ^^
(Right) Amazing molded details on the one-piece shield part.

(Left) Another one of the Gundam's asymmetrical armor pieces.
(Right) A large one-piece part that forms a rack to hold the three arrows when it's a backpack, and a targeting sensor (?) when it's deployed for Ryuurin Gouretsukyuu.

Zankuutou (斬空刀).

Foil sticker and polycap set.

All removed parts are organized and stored in individual paper containers.

Will start working on this kit in the next posting. ^^

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