Wednesday, December 11, 2019

[Kit Insight] Bandai MG 1/100 RGM-89 Jegan (Straight Build)


Model Number: RGM-89
Designation: EFSF Mass Production General Purpose Mobile Suit

This Master Grade iteration of a mass production cannon fodder mobile suit has NO BUSINESS being this good.

The RGM-89 Jegan represented the pinnacle of EFSF GM technology during the events of Char's Counterattack, being a state-of-the-art machine slated to replace the aging GM III units in the Federation's arsenal. In the early stages of adoption by the EFSF main force, the Londo Bell taskforce was the first combat outfit to utilise the Jegan in sizable numbers, validating the mobile suit's track record as a high performance mass production mobile suit that was cheap to manufacture and maintain.

While High Grade (HG) 1/144 scale variants of the Jegan frame have been done to death and covered extensively on this blog (here, here, here, here, here, here and here), the Master Grade (MG) 1/100 version is new and somewhat unexpected, although a 2019 release makes sense on the 30th anniversary of Char's Counterattack. 

Older MG model kits have turned me off due to their skewed Complexity-Fragility Ratios (CFR), whereby the time and effort spent to build the model kit does not result in a very stable or playable end product. Some MGs can't even stand without assistance, while others can barely hold their own weapons in limp hand parts. That being said, modern MGs have been simplified in the sense that there are lesser moving parts in the whole structure resulting in a more solid model kit. This is exemplified in the MG 1/100 GM model kits that Bandai has been churning out: simple, no-frills model kits that still possess the unmistakable branding and styling of a Master Grade. The Jegan takes this concept and runs with it.

Simply put, the MG 1/100 Jegan has the stability of its HGUC 1/144 counterpart but with greater part/colour separation, articulation and build quality. The relatively simplistic construction belies the dexterity of the inner frame, an ode to Bandai's quality design and fantastic engineering that allows them to do more with less. Frankly, the MG 1/100 Jegan builds like a HG model kit, with small numbers of large parts; I've built RGs with more components in the arms that the Jegan's. This is not necessarily a bad thing as the large parts work towards stabilising the entire model kit, resulting in a very robust unit that wouldn't lose armour parts simply from being shaken or picked up too quickly.

As a mass production mobile suit model kit, the MG 1/100 Jegan doesn't come packaged with a lot of accessories, just the standard trifecta of beam rifle, shield and beam saber. A heavy weapon, such as the hyper bazooka from the P-Bandai MG 1/100 Weapon & Armor Hangar for Full Armor Gundam Ver. Ka (Gundam Thunderbolt)  serves to add even more badassery to an already formidable grunt unit.

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