Tuesday, 1 January 2013

AGE-1 Gundam Normal

I'll be really honest, at first I hated AGE. I loathed it without having even watched it. I found the character design style really stupid, like the kiddy cartoons of today, and I thought the whole family generation arc was going to be stupid.

Then I watched AGE. All of the episodes. ALL 49 EPISODES OF GUNDAM AGE...

And I was wrong. 180 degrees wrong. I found myself enjoying the series, more so than some other Gundam series. I waited every week so that I can watch it to know what happens next. Hell, I browse that official Bandai channel for updates sometimes.

It was one of the few series where the Gundams weren't super juggernauts, 1 man god of war. Since I'm only covering the AGE-1 Normal, I'll speak only about the first arc.

I like Flit as a character. He's level headed and pretty cool for a kid pilot. I grew from neutral to liking him and AGE-1 reminds me of the O Gundam. Minimal design but still having the allure of a sleek and purpose-built unit.

AGE-1 was as if the Gundam is growing as well with the pilot. Becoming faster, stronger and overall adapted to the different situations it's placed in. The AGE device and AGE builder was an interesting feature and it helped the crew in tight situations. I liked that the upgrades were gradual and not some stunts like mass beam weapons, funnels or beam deflecting coating.

I'm not a fan of the Spallow and Titus though, as I felt the look of it was somewhat silly. But the Normal version, and the upcoming Gransa armour, was really a modern take on the RX-78-2. The racing spoilers were a bit weird though but that's pretty negligible in the grand scheme of things. It's either that or the standard beam saber hilts sticking out.

The overall kit is very flexible and even though it doesn't come with outstanding accessories, the kit justifies itself with well color separation, details and proportions. I'll say it again, it reminds me of my special love the the HG O Gundam and I embrace that feeling.

Oh well, on the kit itself, I'll give it a 7.5/10. Why the rather good score you ask? Well, if you compare the animated AGE-1 Normal and the kit, by golly it's as if it did come alive. Looks is an important part of Gunpla because we all want a plastic form of that awesome fighting machine in the show. Plus with the rather lovely colors and articulation, it makes for an amazing action figure.

What would have made this kit much, much better would probably be a 1/144 scale Flit and Yurin, but that's just wishful thinking. Realistically though, a transparent green plastic AGE chest symbol or re-designed sleeker feet would have been fantastic.

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