Gundam Virtue and Nadleh
Review by VF5SS
Gundam 00 was a great many things to the franchise. For some, it was their first introduction to Gundam while for others it was another entry in the long list of Gundam Universes. Myself, I found it rather refreshing at times in terms of design. There were some familiar features, but I feel the Gundam designs in Gundam 00 had their own sense of style and brought something new to old gimmicks. As the first in my series of reviews of the HCM Pro Gundams from season 1 of Gundam 00 I'll be looking at perhaps the most unique of the quartet, Gundam Virtue.
Virtue's initially appearance was a stark contrast to its effeminate pilot, Tieria Erde. Serving as the group's heavy weapons unit, Virtue has three guns that all do the same thing.
This pudgy, palm-sized Gundam is well executed with sharp paint apps and fine detail as good as a plastic model.
One of Virtue's action features include four panels on its legs and shoulder cannons which can be pulled out to represent its force field mode.
Taking advantage of its small size, this toy is incredible stable even when hefting its large bazooka into position. The shoulder cannons are mounted on swivel joints via ball joints and can move freely into firing position. The bazooka opens up and extends for maximum firepower.
In this mode, Virtue grips its bazooka via two movable handles. The back of the gun plugs into a flap which sits over the toys chest orb (or GN Drive for the picky).
Virtue's biggest surprise comes with the removal of a whopping 21 separate parts (coupled with a head swap) that reveals the inner Gundam Nadle (pronounced Nad-leh).
Now since this is a 1/200 scale figure (roughly 10 centimeters tall), you don't want to keep track of all those tiny parts right? Thankfully, this set includes a clear skeleton that can be used to store all of the extra parts. Applying the parts to the Nadle figure is somewhat fiddly. The larger parts like the leg and arms parts go on without any problem, but the chest parts are the most difficult because they have to be put on in a certain order. The hardest parts have to be the two chest pieces that clamp around the chest orb. There is a collar piece that has to plug into those and the front red torso piece. I don't recommend this toy for the impatient (or the ham handed, sorry Josh) because even if you wanted to just display this toy as Virtue, the armor comes equipped on the skeleton so you have to perform the procedure at least once.
Regardless of these issues, Gundam Nadle is one of the most unique Gundams. Its a strange combination of a cut down design mixed with some feminine touches like its PVC hair which are actually cables that connect the face parts in the show. Nadle is incredibly flexible with the notable exception of its head. The PVC hair is just too hard to flex out of the way so the head is mostly locked in place by its own locks.
While Nadle is a great figure, it is a bit lacking in accessories. You can give it two beam sabers.
You may also give it Virtue's shoulder cannons. Each cannon has a fold out handle which the figure grips like a pair of tonfas. Sadly this toy was released before Nadle received its beam rifle and shield in the show.
My final word on the HCM Pro Virtue is its an interesting figure with all its details and the transformation to Nadle. While the equipping procedure is fiddly, the results are pleasing to fans of the HCM Pro line. So far this is the only toy of the Virtue that execute this Gundam's unique cast off gimmick. Overall, a great execution for such a small size toy.
|Posted 2 September, 2009 - 17:30 by VF5SS|