When the new scale of Gundam model kits was announced last Shizouka Hobby Show, I was really wondering why BANDAI had to make one as opposed to reinforcing and improving the current ones. They have pretty much abandoned the Perfect Grade line (no new releases in years), their Master Grade line is getting better and more detailed, their High Grade line is robust as ever, and their Real Grade line is growing. Sure, I was excited with the announcement, with the Nightingale finally getting an official release, but I was still puzzled why.
In a previous article, I wrote how the line was a way for the unknown and the impractical designs to be released. However, there is still a lingering doubt in my head as to how much effort BANDAI will actually put into making this new line appeal to those who have made the 1/100 scale their niche.
However, if these scans are any indication, I’d say my doubts have been wiped away.
One thing I like about BANDAI is that they love to show screenshots of their new product, even going so far as to publish images that reveal crucial gimmicks in the kit. In this case, the hands. The RE/100 has articulate hands. Hands that were previously only seen in Master Grade kits (and to some extent, the Real Grade). Not only that, it shows that the overall construction promises to be much more stable than even the MG.
Don’t get me wrong, the Master Grade still has the best details in the 1/100 scale. But this is not your ordinary No Grade as some people think this is. No Grades are aptly called because they’re just your over-sized High Grades, with little to no improvements to their joints and connectors. The problem with scaling up high-grades is that what keeps an HG together won’t work with something that is bigger and heavier than what it was designed for.
If you look at the photos, the first thing you will notice is that unlike the Master Grade, there is no real inner-frame. What would be considered “armors” in both Master Grades and Real Grades also serve as part of the actual body and joints. The difference being is that they are reinforced by connectors to keep them from falling apart.
First, the arms:
Besides the articulated hands, you can see that while there is no inner frame, the parts seem to be secured by connectors that are taken from both the HG and the MG technologies. But that’s not the cherry on the sundae. It’s this next picture that has got me excited:
There’s enough stuff there to rival older MG kits.I think the Nightingale’s overall design forces BANDAI to really put work into the legs. It has to support the kit’s overall weight which, even without an inner frame, must be considerable.
Given that this kit will not have a cockpit, I still appreciate the fact that they seem to not half-ass the head unit.
Okay, so it looks pretty bare, but advanced modelers can use that to their advantage by making a custom head cockpit. Even then, there’s a lot of detail that will make you forget about the MG’s usual gimmicks. Like in the photo below.
I’m wondering, though, if this kit will have funnels. It’s supposed to, but there’s a chance that it won’t have. All the same, the funnels still look pretty.
Other parts are really good. Here is the booster underneath the funnels. Have a good look also at the details of the back-side of the kit.
So there you have it: a short preview of how promising this new line is turning out to be. No, it’s not an MG, but based on what we’ve seen so far, it doesn’t have to be.