J's Gunpla - RG RX-78-2

Well everyone, while this isn't a normal update for the blog it is just as important. You've seen some of my friend J's other gunpla on here, like the MG F91 and the 1/60 Freedom Gundam, and now he's gone and typed up his own review and taking pictures of a kit he recently obtained at an anime store in Manhattan, the RG [Real Grade] RX-78-2 Gundam. So, without further adieu, here is J's first ever full Gunpla review~

Well the long awaited Real Grade RX-78-2 Gundam kit is here. As Bandai would put it, the RG is “Excitement Embodied,” and would this be true? Absolutely yes. Although not officially released until January 22, 2011 in the US or acquired at the recently passed San Diego Comic Con, I managed to pick one up at an anime store while in Manhattan. I think it's kind of silly that Bandai gave the RG Gundam an official release date for the US, since most people here just import their gunpla anyway :P
Onto the review, the RX-78-2 is the grandfather of all Gundams, so it was only natural that the first model in the RG line be him. In size, it’s your usual 1/144 scale kit, however the quality is approaching the current MG quality and has surpassed some of the early MG’s like Zaku I or the First MG RX-78-2. Before going into details of the kit, once must remember that Bandai used the “Advanced MS Joint” for this kit, meaning its frame is pre-built and comes in its own runner that, in its entirety, is softer and more flexible than other runners, like the polycap runners. The Advanced MS Joint runner consists of hands, arms, legs, feet, the chest and waist area, the skirt, and even the “pockets” where the beam sabers are stored. It is important to read the instructions carefully as there are parts that need to be removed after the part have been cut out, and some must be kept for later. This idea of a pre-built frame was first implemented in the MG RX-78-2 Gundam 1.5, and then used in the legs of the MG RX-78-2 O.Y.W version. 

But enough about that, let's see the model's articulation. The head is on a ball joint and can pretty much swing back and forth, although it seems it's better at swinging back. The arms are attached to the body via a peg but the arm is on a ball joint so the arms can move pretty high. The arms themselves can bend a full 180˚ thanks to the sliding mechanism on the upper arm, meaning it can easily reach back and grab both sabers at the same time. The hands themselves are already assembled; the thumb and index are on ball joints and the last three fingers are on a single ball joint, meaning it's one of the few 1/144 to have opening hands. Additionally the fingers themselves are jointed so they can straighten out or bend to grip the weapons. There’s an opening on the palm so that the weapon pegs can attach to the hand and be gripped as well. If the core block on the main body is kept in then the torso can move around like on a ball joint allowing it to lean forward and back and side to side. The cockpit area swings out but one cannot see the inside of the cockpit; instead you can really only see the core block. The sides of the skirt are one piece sandwiched between the torso and waist, so it’s not on a ball joint or clip like most side skirts and can swing up and down. The waist part can swing forward and back, but I don’t know much about that since I didn’t mess with that on mine >__>. The legs are also double jointed, allowing for pretty much 180˚ bends with the thigh armor sliding down when the first joint bends, and the knee armor sliding up when the second joint bends. The legs, like the arms, are attached to the waist via a peg that is attached to the ball joint that holds the legs. Finally the feet can bend in three places and are on a ball joint, and because the feet came attached to the ankle armor, one can say there’s a frame to the ankle armor. Even the backpack is well designed, its rendition is accurate and the peg where the beam sabers are held is on a ball joint, allowing for the sabers to swing back and forth, but not side to side due to restrained space, and the thrusters are ball-jointed.

Bandai did something truly amazing with this RG RX-78-2. It just has so much detail that it blows all other 1/144 kits out of the water. Compared to my HG RX-78-2 ver.G30th, the RG can strike poses looking more natural than the HG one.

As with all things, nothing is perfect and I have my share of complaints about this kit, though some may be due to my bad skill as a modeler.
-Thrusters on the backpack fall off way too much and don’t snap in.
-Front and back skirt plates are on ball joints but very loose, so they’ll come off if you try moving the leg too far forward or back.
The biggest complain however, which is in part my fault, is just how stiff the frame actually is. When you first cut out the Advance MS Joints they will be ridiculously stiff to the point that bending them is a frightening thing. However, if the parts are not loosened, once the model is complete and you try to pose it, you’re going to find yourself fighting with the part to bend, and because the frames use the sliding mechanism for the armor, you risk one of the inner parts coming undone preventing the part to return to its original position, and will require you to strip the part and re-attach the joint. In my case the slide mechanism near the elbow came off while bending it backwards and then couldn’t straighten out. Instead of stripping the part I snapped it back in place, causing the “H” shaped guard on the front of the elbow to snap. Because it was being held in place by the rest of the arm, though, nothing fell off but merely repositioned itself back to the “H” shape.

Although the picture isn’t clear you can make out a white dash though the gray armor: the place it snapped in.

Here’s Dalong’s pictures on how the frame moves and those of you who’ve dealt with slide mechanisms know how this works all too well.

First off is the good old Beam Rifle, the death of many Zaku in the original anime as at the time the RX-78-2 was the first MS to use beam weaponry. At first glance it looked odd seeing how there was a random white part on the rifle, but it’s actually pretty cool after a while, and once compared to the HG G30th beam rifle, the mixed colors don’t look so bad. There is a peg that swings out and fits in the opening of the hand, but for me it’s impossible to do so I just have it grip normally. Additionally there’s a peg on the side to store it in the shield.

The Gundam’s shield, the bane of Zaku weaponry as Zaku machine guns had no effect on it. Sporting superb detail and 2 kinds of red, this shield is very nice. It has a peg that attaches to the side of the arm, as well as a handle for the Gundam to grip. The Peg+Grip are together, meaning they slide up and down to grip it correctly. Bonus is that the 2 peg-less beam sabers can be stored inside the shield, as well as the beam rifle. Compared to the G30th shield, there’s no competition in terms of detail.

The Hyper Bazooka…well I got nothing except it was a Hyper Bazooka, meaning a lot of stuff blew up because of it. This is probably my favorite aspect of its weapons because instead of just being a single color, it contains different colors and small details like the individual rockets on the clip. Also, the handle has a peg and can swing a bit for better positioning it on the Gundam, as well as another peg so it can be mounted on the rear plate, which swings open.

Now for the Good old beam sabers. The cool thing is that it doesn’t include 2, but 4 beam sabers! 2 with pegs for the hands and 2 pegs-less for the shield, so you can store all 4 on the Gundam. The beam blades however are really long though, which I found funny. Still they are A LOT better than the measly white beam saber the G30th brought.

Last but not least, the Core Fighter. This little guy is fully transformable and can actually be placed inside the Gundam like the MG fighters, something unheard of in a 1/144. However it will restrict the movement of the torso so I’m not docking it any time soon. Plus it’s one very nicely detailed Core Fighter, so why wouldn’t you want it to be displayed?

Compared to my MG Infinite Justice.

Overall this was a truly amazing kit to do. The details very nicely replicate the 1/1 Gundam in Japan, and all of the markings faithfully reproduced in a 1/144 meaning you better be ready to sit down and stick decals 1/3 the size of HG polycaps onto the model. The model uses two kinds of whites on the model to make more parts stand out as opposed to everything blending in. The head, for example, has the yellow head vulcans already molded on it and the camera on top of the head and back is already red. All that had to be done is just put the head armor over these pieces and the result was fantastic. Even the HG needed stickers for the cameras and already had the vulcans molded white in the forehead. The mouth piece had the two lines already slit open, meaning no panel lining was required there. Truly building this was like assembling a MG, and is recommended to anyone who already has experience doing models.

And there you have it, folks! Clearly while the RG is fantastic, it has its fair share of negatives just like all other Gunpla.

And with that, I'll see y'all next time~


  1. Nice write-up! From the photos, it is very hard to see that this is a 1/144 scale model. From the way it looks, I would be guessing its a MG ^^.

  2. If the RG was 1/100 or 1/60 scale though, then it'd be a MG or a PG xD. They've added that kind of complexity to 1/144 scale, which I think is remarkable :O

  3. wow rg rs 79 i hope they will make dual gundam or buster form gundam seed

  4. I doubt that they'd be making a duel or buster soon since gunpla kits are mostly based on popularity. I'm guessing that we'd be seeing some Wing MS kits soon. :)