It's been quite sometime honestly since I've built a Gundam model kit (which is commonly referred to as Gunpla in the community). My last blog about it was way back in 2010; and I even have a blogpost of the time where I bought myself a First Grade (FG) kit of all the lead Gundams in Mobile Suit Gundam 00.
However, truth be told I never got around building the said model kits I bought at the time. It remained in my room, just collecting dust, due to my busy schedule and eventually it ended up being christmas gifts for my 2 nephews:
And it was at that moment, where I helped my 2 nephews build their gunplas that my passion and love for gunpla was rekindled. Thus started my so-called "Gundam high" that my significant other is telling me about. XD And the funny thing is, she actually helped me get back into it, by buying my first gunpla kit; a Gundam AGE-1 Normal 1/44 Advance Grade (AG) kit:
One of my excuses back then why I never built my model kits, was I didn't have proper tools, and so after getting that gunpla, that's exactly what I set out to find and get after so long. Although quite honestly I didn't get ALL of the proper tools, I just got what I could and started to build my gunpla kit:
And I went ahead and did a straight build of my first gunpla. And my goodness I'm simply happy of how my kit turned out:
UPDATE: Here's some more pictures of my Gundam AGE-1 Normal AG kit:
I suppose I would like to thank Bandai for the improvements they made into the Advance Grade kits. The sheer satisfaction of building a model kit that looks THIS GOOD (albeit with little to no articulation) out of the box with no need to paint it, is sheer testament to Bandai's dedication on improving gunpla kits for fans. I mean just look at it. I didn't even paint the kit, but it already looks so good, which boosts my confidence and pride as a someone who is starting out into gunpla building.
- The kit is priced very affordably at Php299 - Php350 (roughly around $6 - $7) which makes the kit much of an impulse buy for those who are curious or interested in Gunpla (specially budget concious mothers who wish to buy one for their kids).
- The kit is perfect for beginners as it only contains few parts to assemble. It's less intimidating for someone with little to no experience with gunplas. I mean just look at this picture (taken from Dalong.net) that shows all the runners that come with the box:
- The kit only takes a couple of minutes to build, thanks in part to the small number of parts (as shown in the picture above from Dalong.net) that's included with the kit. Not only does building the kit seem less intimidating, it makes it more faster for newbies to build and appreciate their kit and for them to want to build another kit of the same line or higher... like say a High Grade (HG) kit.
- The kit doesn't use seals/stickers to flesh out some details in the kit (like First Grade kits), as most are done using colored plastic. It keeps the focus on building the kit and makes it even appealing for newbies when they finish the kit; as the kit would simply look really good. Here's a picture of the kit unpainted and built out of the box (taken from Dalong.net)
This kit was so good, that when I heard that the Gundam Caravan is going to be giving away free AG kits on selected malls so that newbies can try their hand at building gunpla for free, I decided to tag my significant other along.
Here's her blogpost detailing her experience: http://insideacatsmind.wordpress.com/2014/02/26/trying-something-new-my-first-gundam/
Here's some pictures of our time at the Gundam Caravan, as together we built our very own Genoace I AG Kits:
Bandai, I would love for you guys to continue this line and hopefully include ALL of the past Gundam models that were released in HG form or higher. Just keep the idea of the "Block Build System" of making all the detailed parts colored plastic instead of using seals/stickers. Keep it priced very friendly and you got yourself a winner for newbies to start gunpla building with.
Looking back, I realized nothing was stopping me from building those model kits I bought 4 years ago. It was just me. I kept on finding excuses, being a perfectionist, which hindered me from finally working on those gunpla kits. I realized lately that IT'S OKAY TO SCREW UP in the beginning, as you will learn valuable lessons in gunpla building in each mistake you make. Sure they may not look as "perfect" as you would want em to be, but the satisfaction of knowing YOU BUILT IT, is something that can never be taken away. That is why I stopped making excuses, and started building. Just like in life I guess... stop making excuses, don't be afraid to make mistakes, and learn from it. Now who says you can't learn a thing or two from Gunpla? :)