Sunday, March 18, 2018

[Kit Insight] Bandai Pacific Rim: Uprising HG 1/550 Gipsy Avenger (Painted Build)


Codename: Gipsy Avenger
Designation: Pan Pacific Defense Corps Mark-VI Jaeger System

I'm so glad that Bandai acquired the rights to make models kits of the Pacific Rim: Uprising Jaegers! The HG Gipsy Avenger is definitely War Ready!
Disclaimer: I'm a Pacific Rim nut to the core, having watched the first movie at least seven times in its entirety and having a few of the Neca toys that were released alongside the film. While these toys are nowhere near the quality of my usual Japanese fare, they served to fill a giant robot sized gap that appeared after watching the movie.


So when news of the sequel broke, I was elated. No matter the plot (or lack thereof), I will watch it on its opening night and maybe several times after that as well. The new Jaegers look cool and the trailers only served to raise hype to almost fever pitch. Then Bandai announced not one but two lines of merchandise directly related to Pacific Rim: Uprising - the Robot Damashii Side Jaeger collectible range of pre-finished figures and a selection of Jaeger model kits marketed under the HG banner. Naturally, I was totally sold!

As per its HG namesake, the Jaeger model kits are roughly scaled with their traditional Gunpla counterparts, although they tower over most mobile suits that are of standard stature. At 15 cm tall once assembled, the HG Gipsy Avenger is roughly a 1/550 scale model kit of the in-universe Gipsy Avenger which stands at a gargantuan 82 meters.

For a HG model kit, the number of runners and corresponding parts are actually kept low, counting only two standard size runner plates and two smaller ones. Cast primarily in blue, the runners also come with a clear orange part for the nuclear vortex turbine, a tiny gold visor, a light grey runner as well as a silvery grey one for the joint parts. All things considered, the colour separation is not too bad, just a tad bland as there's only one shade of blue. Then again, it's a HG model kit. A small sticker sheet is also provided to add the red pinstripes and markings to an otherwise monotonous Gipsy Avenger.

For my version of the Gipsy Avenger, I used the following paints:
  • Tamiya Gun Metal
  • Tamiya Light Gun Metal
  • CT7 Gold
  • Nippon Pylox Light Blue
  • Nippon Pylox Deep Blue
  • Nippon Pylox Deep Grey
  • Red Fox Bright Silver
The paints and stickers were sealed in with a layer of semi-gloss topcoat to preserve the completed Gipsy Avenger's "factory fresh" aesthetic, as with most of my painted model kit builds.

Build-wise, the Gipsy Avenger is a literal beast. It's like Bandai took all of their model kit know-how, expertise and experience developed over the years and poured them all into this kit, resulting in a product that is excellent on almost all fronts. Part separation is fantastic, as what you'd expect from modern HG kits, and then some. It is by far the easiest kit I've ever painted.

The detailing on the outer armour is incredible, with stark mechanical detail etched all over. Even the huge thighs have plenty of detail on them to make them less bare, something that is still evident on modern HG Gunpla models. The kit also makes use of modern HG joints to give the completed kit plenty of articulation thanks to double-jointed elbows and knees. The main components also work well together to give the Gipsy Avenger a lot of stability, allowing it to hold poses well and not have parts fall off left, right and center. Once it is moved into a pose, the Gipsy Avenger will hold it with no problems.

One of the main features of HG model kits is the provision of many weapons and accessories. The Gipsy Avenger is no exception to this rule, being bundled with its Plasmacaster 2.0, the Chainsword 2.0, the Gravity Sling as well as an open hand. Bandai connected all of the weapons to expanded forearms that replace the the existing ones, reproducing the look of the weapon as though they are activated. This also reduces strain on the individual parts, extending their longevity and eliminates the need to remove the small armour plating in order to showcase the Plasmacaster.

Overall, the HG Gipsy Avenger is a godsend for Pacific Rim fanboys and I can only look forward to the day that Bandai creates model kits of the Jaegers from the first film (Striker Eureka PLEASE)!

Gallery


























Chainsword 2.0










Plasmacaster 2.0













Gravity Sling






Action Pose