Welcome to Gundam Plus II, the successor to the original Gundam Plus site.
I picked up this kit shortly after seeing 0083. Being the more interesting of Kou’s Gundams, I found it to be a rather worthwhile kit. For the most part, the decals and detail pieces fall into place well. Some pieces, like the sorely out of place thrusters in the heel, should’ve probably been left out as they create more problems than they’re worth.
If you can follow picture instructions, the assembly isn’t difficult. Having the basic design of most Gundam and GM types, the detail parts such s the backpack, shoulders and shins are what will take up most of your time. Total assembly time is 30 minutes to an hour, depending on your experience with these types.
The Gundam’s head is pretty much average for an HGUC kit. It has the extra antennae near the center on the top of the head which practically begs to be snapped off by a low flying core fighter or what not. Also, the HGUC line is creating its own train wreck with the V Fin. It has the white ‘fin’ part and then the red piece that snaps on over it. I still don’t know why they just don’t make it one piece because the red one is a pain to get on properly.
I’ll include the backpack as part of the torso. I have mixed emotions when it comes to the torso. For one, the chest and abdomen fit together very well. You get the 2 retro boosters for the front and a separate piece for the red cockpit hatch. The backpack has 2 beam saber handles which you can remove only by taking the backpack off entirely, 2 small thrusters that rotate in a socket joint and of course, the massive verniers. The verniers are a major headache. The pieces that lock the vernier to the backpack are incredibly flimsy. One of mine broke as I was removing it from the tree. They’re prone to falling off and this could’ve easily been dealt with by using a longer sock ET piece in the backpack and inserting the verniers into it.
The arms and shoulders are another ambiguous area of the model. The shoulders would look a lot better with some paint however the real problem is the flap of armor covering the triceps. Those pieces can get caught on the forearm armor and they also block the movement of the shield. Your shield fits in the forearm with the aid of another piece, giving you 2 sides to put the shield on. The shield is up to the top of the suit’s abdomen in height and uses 2 blue decals for detail. With some maneuvering, you can have the shield’s handle in the suit’s hand. The beam rifle is pretty standard. You have a scope which gets about 90 degrees of motion, a hand guard that gets around 190 degrees of motion. Two pieces form the stock and one caps off the barrel. Your beam saber, however, is rather pathetic. It is one white piece which you’re expected to paint. It does fit in its designated hand well but still shows laziness on the designer’s part.
The legs are certainly a hard point on this model. Though they’re pretty much like every other human type’s legs, they’re exceptionally possible and not floppy at all. A lot of work goes into your shin and ankle area where you have several points trying to make it as much like the show as possible. The thrusters in the heel I removed because they’re hard to keep in place and restrict the movement of that armor flap. Along with exceptional detail, the feet move on a socket joint, making for good balance.
Now a little Easter egg you get is the Full Vernian core fighter. In my opinion, it’s the most interesting part of the model. The giant verniers on this one move easily and should probably have been implemented on the mobile suit. Though basically what you have is the backpack folded out with some landing gear, it’s a pretty nice addition that you could make some good scenes with.
The kit is a rating roller coaster. It’s certainly a must have if you’re really into 0083 or the GP01. While the backpack and beam saber bring it down, the detail and posing bring the kit back up. This is another kit that could really use a stand however the nifty little core fighter really makes up for it. So if you can paint your beam saber or grab one of the extras from another kit, you have a really nice model in your hands.