On the whole, it's been heaps of fun. The poseability of the models has made for more interesting challenges in constructing and painting the models, i.e. rather than the single static pose I'm used to, I had to account for the fact that these models are meant to be movable. As such, I had to be a bit more thorough in reaching every nook and cranny of the model, which meant painting components separately, something quite alien to me.
Also, bringing my experience as a GW hobbyist into Gunpla, there were some things in Gunpla-land that struck me as odd, notably:
- Gunpla markers - This just seemed like nonsense to me. Painting is meant to be done with a brush!
- Coloured plastic sprues - I'm going to paint the model anyway; what use have I for coloured plastic? I'd rather they make everything in grey plastic, if that would keep costs (and hence prices) down...
- Stickers - Not water-slide decals, mind you. These supposed High Grade kits come with stickers! Again, utterly useless to me, but I suppose this is to cater to the needs of small children, like the markers.
Here's a summary of what kits I've tried thus far, in order of construction:
This one holds a special place in my heart as the first I'd constructed, and it shows in the little errors I'd made in painting it, notably in the elbow joints (not visible in this pic). A nice, straightforward kit, with pretty much no superfluous bling. The gatling shield was a bit fiddly, though. As I had to strike a balance between what I could paint and what could be moved, I chose to glue the weapons permanently into the hands. Citadel colours weren't made for the wear and tear of constant friction like that, so I opted to glue weapons into the hands whenever possible.
I had good memories of watching Gundam SEED while in uni, and Buster's got a satisfyingly large gun, so I went for it. This kit annoyed me somewhat with how skinny it was - so scrawny that there's no space for an action base peg in its crotch. Also, on further consideration, I didn't like the cream colour on the original Buster, so sod that, Caliban Green all round!
This is the first Gundam Build Fighters kit I did. I watched the series first, and long before that, I had been in kendo, hoping to one day win the right to bear 2 blades. I stopped kendo before that could happen (long story) but since then I'd always had a soft spot for minis carrying paired swords.
This one's stickers drew particular scorn from me. What use had I, a long time Necron player, for shiny green stickers? Anyway, on constructing the kit, I was drawn to how simple, versatile and flexible the Red Frame was, and became increasingly disenchanted with the over-the-top aesthetic of gunpla from Gundam Build Fighters.
As for the paint job, I tried staying faithful to the colours as seen in the anime, adding my own touch for the glowy green bits, of course. All in all, an ok kit.
Due to a mistake in spraying, my original plan to keep the colours close to the anime version went to pot, and thus I found myself painting my first miniature in Ultramarine colours. A nice model, but the legs are a little harder to pose, bulky as they are. Also, the weapon binders/thrusters were just too ludicrously big for me to take seriously, and so I left those out.
I am led to understand that suits from the Gundam AGE anime series are viewed as childishly simple and hence unsatisfying to build and paint. This one caught my eye for being completely white and so I thought I'd try my hand at doing a nice white model. On top of that, the pilot of this suit in the anime carries the monicker "White Wolf", so I figured it would be a good place to dump some Space Wolf transfers.
It was, as they say, absurdly easy to build and a very simplistic model. I think there's a kind of subdued beauty to it, but yeah, it was easily the quickest to construct, matched only by another AGE suit, Shaldoll Rogue.
I went with a simple white scheme, mostly spraying white, using Nuln Oil to blackline and then go over any mistakes with Ceramite White. As I've mentioned before, a ridiculously easy build.
Another ludicrously simple kit from Gundam AGE. By this point, I'd gotten so little satisfaction out of building it, that I just couldn't be arsed to paint it, and so it sits, unpainted, waiting for some day when I've nothing else better to paint...
My current WIP. A nice chunky kit with lotsa guns. By the time I was halfway through with this one, I came to realise that the Universal Century kits were more to my liking, with plenty of simple, practical-ish suits that look like they were designed by engineers rather than over-enthusiastic artists with a tenuous grasp of of real-world physics.
Exia Dark Matter
I was suckered into getting this kit by the fact that it bore two blades. I will say this for the model: It SUCKS. The joints are mostly bereft of the polycaps that give most gunpla their poseability, instead using the same hard plastic as the rest of the model, resulting in joints that become way too loose too quickly. For another, the colour of the supposed red bits is in fact this vile shade of carmine; that is to say, it's pinkish. For someone who's been playing Blood Angels as long as I have, this colour is an abomination.
But, far be it from me to let good plastic go to waste. This one, I will paint. BUT it will never see tabletop action, and will have its joints glued permanently into position and spend the rest of it's days perched atop a GP Base.
So... what next?
On to MG, I suppose! Well, I gotta have something to keep me busy while I wait for the new BA codex...