|I think a Super Deformed version of Genoace would be super cute!|
Welcome to my first Gunpla Review from the Advanced Grade line of kits!
The Advanced Grade Model Kit line is similar to the Entry Grade line (a Gunpla Model Kit line that I've previously reviewed) in that they are also advertised to be very newbie-friendly.
Anyway, let's get to it! Go past the break to check the full review!
Today, we're going to take a look at the RGE-B790 "Genoace" from the Mobile Suit Gundam AGE Anime. I should also point out that Advanced Grade kits exclusively feature Mobile Suits from Gundam AGE. Unfortunately, the Advanced Grade line is becoming pretty rare here in our country, and I was only able to get my hands on this Genoace and a Gundam AGE-1 Normal, so these 2 would probably be my first and last review kits from this Gunpla line.
Before we assemble the kit, let's first take a look at the box.
The front cover, as usual, has a picture of the Mobile Suit it is based on (in this case, the Genoace). The boxart has a plain anime-esque picture of the featured MS. Nothing fancy here, no special effects like explosions or backgrounds, and details of the Mobile Suit were kept in minimum. Just the Genoace in a generic pose.
The Mobile Suit's name and a few basic information are also printed on the Front Cover for potential buyers to see. At the top, the scale of the kit (1:144) and the Mobile Suit Gundam AGE logo can be seen. Genoace's name is printed at the bottom part of the Front Cover (in Katakana, and its English-equivalent at the very bottom). Just above the Mobile Suit's name is a big "AG" logo to denote that this kit is from the Advanced Grade line. You'll probably also notice the price tag that I wasn't able to remove. You will notice that it is similarly priced to the Entry Grade kits, which also comes priced at ₱300 (around $4-5).
|Left Side Cover|
Checking the left side cover, I noticed that there was another giant sticker stamped on it again... I hate it when they do that because I want to see what's written underneath (although I probably can't read it since it's in Japanese). Anyway, it's probably just a warning note. What's interesting is the picture to the left. "GAGE-ING", it says. There's also a sort of arcade thingamajig there, as well. There's also a website, gage-ing.com. I wonder what that is... Anyway, I'll do a separate post about that once I learn more about it.
|Right Side Cover|
At the right side of the box, there are front and rear view pictures of the Gunpla. Note that these pictures were painted by professionals, and that this Gunpla will not look like this after out-of-the-box assembly. There's also information about Mr. Largan, the Genoace's most memorable pilot in the Anime.
|Top Side Cover|
|Bottom Side Cover|
The top and bottom sides of the box, as usual, only mirrors the boxart from the front cover. Some basic information is printed, like "Genoace" in Katakana, the Mobile Suit's scale, and the Gunpla's number in the Advanced Grade line just in case you're planning on collecting all of them. In this case, Genoace appears to be the 3rd Gunpla in the AG line.
Hey, all the sides are covered! Now, let's take a look at the contents...
|Open the box by sliding the upper half from its lower half.|
|All 4 runners are contained inside a plastic bag.|
The Advanced Grade boxes open up like a traditional High Grade Model Kit in that it comes in 2 pieces of cardboard. All of the runners were placed inside a single wrap of plastic. From the looks of it, there appears to be 4 runners in this kit. But, wait... Where's the instruction manual?
|Inside Box Print|
What's this? The instruction manual is printed on the inside of the box. I guess this is common in cheap Gunplas since there really isn't much instructions and assembly is mostly easy to figure out even to beginners like myself. This is also how the Entry Grade kits printed their instruction manuals, albeit in black and white. Here's a top view for those who'd like to get a better look at the instructions, for some reason.
The sides of the inside of the box also contains some printed-on information.
|Inside Box Print Top Side|
|Inside Box Print Bottom Side|
|Inside Box Print Left Side|
|Inside Box Print Right Side|
Again, I noticed the "GAGE-ING" thing... The arcade-like machine was also pictured again here. There's also 2 new pictures here, which I assume are related to this "GAGE-ING" thingamajig. There's a "GAGE-ING HARO", and also the AGE Device. The AGE Device, in particular, looks really neat. It also seems to have a functional screen. I guess you need to use it in tandem with the arcade-like machine.
|Runner A1: 8 Parts|
|Runner A2: 5 Parts|
|Runner B: 11 Parts|
|Runner CL-1: 1 Part|
Total No. of Runners: 4
Total No. of Parts: 25
As you can see, parts are kept to a minimum to avoid complex assembly (since these kits are targeted at Gunpla model beginners). There are no stickers available. In High Grade kits, the fewer the stickers usually translates to a better overall kit because it mostly means that there are less parts that needs to be covered up because it was molded in a different color. I don't know if this rings true for Advanced Grade kits as well, but we'll find out soon enough.
|What's this thing? Looks like a black box.|
|I guess it has something to do with the GAGE-ING arcade.|
There's also this black thing, which I assume has something to do with the GAGE-ING arcade thingamig that we saw from the box. It's the part of the kit that has nothing to do with the Mobile Suit itself. I'm going to call it the "GAGE-ING Device", for the sake of this review.
|Genoace Card Front View|
|Genoace Card Rear View|
Also, the kit contains cards! For each Gunpla you get in the Advanced Grade kits, you get a card about the featured Mobile Suit. I assume that this also has something to do with the GAGE-ING arcade gimmick. I'm a sucker for cards like these. This will go straight to my card binder.
Box is done. Runners are counted. Time to assemble the kit!
|Cut the parts off their runners... Then, assemble!|
The instruction manual shows us that the parts on the runners can be easily snapped off, further demonstrating how newbie-friendly this kit is. However, I still used my pair of sidecutters. And the process is as tedious as ever... But the fun comes after that, which is connecting all the parts together!
|The Genoace's head reminds me of an astronaut's helmet, for some reason...|
|Section 1 is now done!|
|Section 2: assemble the torso. So far, looks good.|
|Attach the other parts for the torso...|
|Here's the back of the Genoace, and this is where you place the GAGE-ING Device.|
|Attach the backpack... Done.|
|Sections 3 and 4 are for the arms. Just 3 parts for each arm... Nothing complex.|
|Sections 5 and 6 are for the legs. 3 parts for each leg, as well...|
|Attach the feet, and we're done!|
Sections 1-6 of the instruction manual are done. What's left to do is to connect all of the assembled parts together to form the Genoace! Now, we get to see it after assembly...
Now, it's time to review the unit! This is probably going to be my easiest review yet. That's because there's basically nothing to review here except for the kit's detailing. Let's get to it one by one, shall we?
A. Basic Profile
Here's the front, rear, and side pictures of the Genoace, so you can see the Gunpla from front to back.
In this section, I'll go over the details of the Gunpla. Normally, I'd also check the Gunpla Kit's level of articulation but, as I've mentioned before, articulation on this Model Kit is extremely limited. For starters, none of the body parts of the Gunpla can be moved except for the head and arms. The arms can only be spun around from its shoulders because it's only attached to it via a peg (not even a ball joint, at least). The head is attached to the body via a ball joint, though, and can be tilted slightly up and down or rotated 360°.
So, let's just take a closer look at the Genoace, and here are some pictures for you to check out.
|The Genoace, standing still. This is the only pose of the Genoace that you can put it in that doesn't look awkward.|
|The Genoace's upper half. You'll notice that you need to paint the grey parts of the kit yourself, since they are molded in white.|
|That clear part really looks nice, but the detail inside the head is barely noticeable, unless you get close to it like this.|
|Looking at the torso, the kit looks very good even without stickers.|
|You can't move the legs and feet. I guess the upside to this is that the Gunpla feels very very sturdy.|
|Here's the upper half's rear view. The thrusters there are supposed to be grey, so you have to paint it if it really bothers you.|
|A Gunpla as cheap as this, I'm at least expecting a few hollow parts. Fortunately, it seems that this is the only one, and it's not that noticeable as well.|
|The Genoace's shield is attached close to the tip of its elbow, and it lifts its hands up to use it.|
|There are only 2 accessories for this kit. Its beam gun and arm-mounted shield.|
Genoace, unfortunately, only comes with 2 accessories and, to be honest, it's the only 2 accessories the Genoace uses throughout the entirety of its screen time in the Gundam AGE Anime. Well, I saw it use a sort of heat rod one time but these 2 are the only ones that you will need, really.
IV. Final Thoughts
This was, by far, the easiest Gunpla Model Kit that I have assembled, even compared to the Entry Grade Kits. The review was also the fastest one that I've done because there were less things that I need to think about.
In general, if you're looking for a kit that you can get into different action poses, this kit is not the one to buy (along with the rest of the kits available on the AG line). It has close to no articulation. The only reason that it's arms can move is because it attaches to the body via a peg (for practical reasons, most likely). The same goes for its head.
However, I'm not saying that the Advanced Grade kits are not impressive. In fact, I like it better than the Entry Grade Kits. The level of detail that this kit has is amazing, considering the fact that this is an entry-level Gunpla. Because the kit has close to no articulation, it compensates with its high level of detail. Honestly, I like the idea of it. If you think about it, the Entry Grade Model Kits that I had previously reviewed also has an extremely limited level of articulation. There are almost no other position that you can put the Gunpla into that doesn't look awkward aside from a standing pose. If that's going to be the case, why not just remove articulation altogether and improve the detail of the kit instead? And this is what the AG kits have done, and I like it!
|"Sorry, this is the only pose that I can do."|
That's it for my very first Advanced Grade review! I still have one more AG kit reviewed, which will be posted after this one (and more Gunpla Reviews to come!).
I'll see you on the next post!