I was making the post and was interrupted by my sister, who asked the following "Why is it called the HIV Gundam?". I was like "Whaaa... What are you saying? What HIV. Don't be silly, you've watched too much Dallas Buyer's Club". And then it hit me, like a speeding train, that it was in fact, Hi-v Gundam...
I got derailed from what I wanted to post.
The RD Hi-v Gundam took on the fatter original design, minus the purple color scheme and I was drawn to the promotional images like bees to honey. The images showcased the Hi-v's ferocious side. That long side view of the head, with the bulky torso was the major attraction point.
It made the Hi-v looked masculine and yet have a sleek profile look to it. It's proportions was also different than the HGUC version, so naturally, it seemed like another must-have Gundam for me.
When I found out that I missed the pre-order for Hobby Search and Hobby Link, I was kinda devastated. Knowing how popular the iconic Hi-v is, there was almost no chance of getting it for a decent price other than paying exorbitant ransoms to online re-sellers.
Well, surprise surprise, turns out, there's a bunch of it available around for retail price. And I can guess why. It looks absolutely awkward in person, especially from the front view.
Everything looked great from the side but the front was filled with flaws such as a thin looking head with a pathetic excuse for a goatee, stocky torso, extra long plate skirts and a pencil-thin shield. I was very disappointed.
On the bright side, there's a lot of included accessories; the beam rifle, blue beam sabers, hyper bazooka, the shield, 6 articulated fin funnels, an option between the new and old balancer, the extra long fuel tank, effect parts for 4 fin funnels and a pseudo-stand for the funnels. It would have been pretty good if Bandai included a dedicated Amuro insignia stand.
After having compared the 1/144 Hi-v versions, I must say that while the RD's articulation trumps the HGUC, I prefer the HGUC's better proportions and overall looks. It is a pity too since I actually really liked the lineart images of the original Hi-v before they streamlined.
It's a 6.8/10.0 figure, you won't miss it much.