Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Gunpla #41 - RG Tallgeese II Review

I have a bunch of P-bandai RG kits piling up on my backlog. Anyway, it is eventually the Tallgeese II  (TG2) who got the honour to be built first. Out of the three versions of Tallgeese, TG2 is my second favorite, after the Tallgeese III, of course, and I've anticipated this release soon after Bandai announced the Tallgeese Endless Waltz (TGEW) version. Many people argue that TG2 is simply a recolor of the original TGEW, and I quite agree with them. Therefore, many aspects of this review are more about the new things TG2 offers, that could not be found on the retail release.

With everything it brought
The construction was pretty much the same with TGEW, except for the head. The part separation of the head is breathtaking and annoying as well because of the tiny size of the parts (even the red "cry" under the eyes is a separate part). TG2 is equipped with an extra "hands" for its famous pose in the anime. Other new things is the decal sticker special for TG2 and the figure of Treize Khushrenada.

See the special hands? They are on the second to the left.

TG2 markings decal sticker
In contrast with the predominant white of TGEW, TG2 has blue for most of its parts. The color separation is not so clear with TG2 compared to TGEW, but I think there are two kinds of blue, the first is glossy blue, and the second is semi-glossy, slightly darker blue. As the yellow parts of TGEW, they are replaced with the white on TG2. The frame and Dobergun colors are slightly lighter than TGEW. In my opinion, while TGEW has better color separation, TG2 is better for its vibrant blue base color.

Since TG2 is basically a recolor of TGEW, the latter has the same articulations and gimmicks with the former, and due to many TGEW reviews out there, I will not tell much about it. In general, the articulation is amazing (of course) and solid for an RG kit. I have so much fun posing this guy, especially for playing with its thrusters on the backpack.

As mentioned above, TG2 has an extra-special hands for performing a pose from the anime (see below), which is probably difficult to do with the original TGEW's open hands.

The decal sticker quality is basically similar with TGEW, and because the base color of TG2 is dark blue, the decal film is more noticeable than its retail counterpart. Probably, a flat top coat is needed to conceal the film.

Now the verdict. Should you buy this p-bandai kit? Well, if you're a big fan of Tallgeese series, I recommend you to get it. By the looks only, TG2 is more badass than the original TGEW (just look at its mean gundam face). Otherwise, you should stay away from this kit since it's basically a recolor of the original with few modifications.


OZ-00MS2 Tallgeese II

  • New head, decals, figure and special hands for posing
  • Great articulation, fun to pose
  • Basically a recolor of TGEW.
  • Sticker's film is more noticable than TGEW

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Gunpla #40 - HGUC Gustav Karl (Unicorn Ver.) WIP and Review

Gustav Karl is one of my favorite grunts in the UC timeline. Designated as the true successor of Jegan series, this large mobile suit shortly made cameos in Unicorn and Narrative anime movie, ironically, just as a mere cannon fodder in the hands of Jesta and (the outdated) Dijeh. Nevertheless, the blocky and bulky design never cease to amaze me. Therefore, I was so happy and hyped when Bandai announced they would release it in HGUC line. Anyway, does this kit really worth the hype and expectation? 

The box was quite big and heavy, don't ask me why. The box art is pretty badass, well ... at least it shows Gustav Karl is ready for action before Jesta grabbed it on the face and sliced its arm from the back lol. The zeta plus in the background though .. One side of the box shows some poses of Gustav Karl, while another one tells a brief history about the mobile suit.

One of the runners. Now, that's a big chunk of plastic we have here. And hey, that's the foil sticker. Not many, which is a good sign. Let's open the package.

The contents are: two identical E plates (black), one D plate (black), one A plate (white, grey, red and pink visor), one polycap runner, one B1 plate (grey), one C1 plate (dark blue), B2 and C2 plates, which contain some pair parts from B1 and C1 plates, beam sabers and foil sticker. Unfortunately, no marking sticker which made me a little bit dissapointed (why Bandai?). And finally, a manual. Based on the name plates on the runners, this is completely a new kit. No rehashed or retooled from previous ones (like Jegans, GM etc.) which made me could not resist the urge to build it as soon as possible.

Main body construction. I've built many feddies grunts in the past like Jegans, Jesta, GM etc, and I can tell that this one is totally different from them. There is something new.

The main body completed. Finally I figured it out. This kit does not use policaps for neck, waist and shoulder joints. It uses parts from PS runners D and E as joints. Interesting.

Three sexy thrusters on the back.

Big shield. Now, the joint on it is not a polycap either.

The shield is then connected to the main body. So all joints on the torso don't use policaps at all.

The head construction was pretty standard. There are 3 foils for the forehead sensor, back head sensor and tip of antenna. I discarded the foils on the antenna because I prefer painting it later.

Upper limbs, which were constructed individually. Only the left arm contains grenade launcher. This time, polycaps were used for the hand joints.

The grenade launcher pod could be open and close. No parts swapping here. This is a really good detail and gimmick rarely found on a HG kit.

The head and upper limbs are connected to the torso. He looks badass.

The shoulder joints could move in and out for wider range of movement. They also could move upward pretty far. Nice.

The biggest plastics of this kit go for the legs. There are 4 thrusters on each of them. There's also something interesting about these legs.

A completed leg. So thicc! Foil stickers also used for panel sides of each calves which I discarded for painting.

Another interesting thing of this kit: the legs could be extended by moving the thigs upward, while back of the calves move downward. This makes the legs could bend even further. See the difference from previous images?

The lower torso and a bigass back skirt.

Completed waist and lower torso. There are 2 beam saber racks on the side skirts which could be opened. Nice.

The completed body and size comparison with recently release HGUC Sinanju Stein and P-Bandai Jegan D-type escort. It is so obvious that Gustav Karl is so big compared to a typical HG kit.

The main weapon of Gustav Karl is a standard Jegan beam rifle, which is in my opinion, really 'lame' compared to the bulkiness of the mobile suit. Therefore, I planned giving him a much bigger gun to suit the mobile suit. The choice then went to Dom's Raketen Baz of Builder Parts System Weapon 006.

There are two types of Bazooka that could be chosen, and I went to longer one. The parts should be assembled first and as expected, Gustav Karl's hand is perfectly suited with the handle.

Now, he looks much more badass with that bazooka. I also added some custom water decals for more detailed looks. Next, posing time!!

The kit has 2 standard hands for holding beam sabers, and 1 trigger right hand for beam rifle. Unfortunately, the trigger hand could not hold the rifle tightly, makes it quite wobbly. Another accessories is a long shield joint for enabling the shield to be positioned forward and beside the body. 

The color separation of this kit is great. The articulation is also nice. It only lacks accessories, but I don't complain much because it is a HG kit. Another good thing is the price. I got it for less than 2000 yen at Biccamera. That is a really good price for a giant kit like this.

One of the interesting things of this kit is the lack of polycaps used for the joints of the torso. This might be good ... or bad. Good thing is, the PE plastic parts are stronger than polycaps, thus the former could withstand the weakening through time as usually suffered by latter. However, the polycaps are well-known for its elasticity and durability to withstand pressure, and that's why they are commonly used as joints in the first place. I notice the joints were starting to become loose after posing the kit several times, probably due to the weight of the bulky plastics. Anyway, this should be easy to fix later.

The conclusion is, despite the lack of accessories this is a really great kit. Good articulation, gimmicks, color separation and nice price. Really recommended.


FD-03 Gustav Karl (Unicorn Version)

  • Beautiful aesthetics, nice color separation
  • Nice articulation, even though with the absence of polycaps for the torso 
  • Interesting gimmicks for legs, shoulder and grenade launcher
  • Good price
  • Lack of accessories and marking sticker
  • Lack of polycaps makes the joints loose after extensive posings