11-meter tall, 1 ton Gundam replica built for float
Asahi.com's English site has a pic and brief news blurb about the Gundam Tachi-Neputa mentioned back in March.
Another photo can be seen at Mutsu News.
SD Gundam tournament crowns champs
Gpara has an article and 3 videos covering the first SD Gundam Capsule Fighter tournament held in South Korea, which ended July 17. The tournament, titled "Search For The Strongest Platoon In The Universe!", consisted of 64 separate matches, the last 16 of which were broadcast live on Afreeca TV. The final bout had the Ikkitousen Team emerging victorious over the Aegis Gundam Team.
Gundam Battle Chronicle details
Game Star has details about the PSP game, coming October 4. It's listed as the 3rd in the Gundam Battle series, following the previous Gundam Battle Tactics and Gundam Battle Royale. The game has complete campaign missions for First, Z, and 0083 and also at least includes MS from ZZ and CCA. With the new chain mission system, mission content changes constantly based on gameplay circumstances. Coop play is possible on all the over 100 missions so if one person is having trouble clearing a particular one, they can bring in a friend to help. Versus mode formats (1 vs. 1, 1 vs. 3, etc.) can be freely chosen. Additional missions and other elements will be unlockable via passwords given out through magazines. Every MS, as well as their weapons and shields, will be customizable using points you receive by clearing missions.
More Gundam 00 staff announced
The official site's staff page was updated:
SF advisors - Tomohiro Chiba, Kenji Teraoka
Sound director - Misafumi Mima
Music - Kenji Kawai
Executive producers - Seiji Takeda (Mainichi Broadcasting), Yasuo Miyakawa (Sunrise)
Art design - Nobuhito Sue (Kusanagi)
Setting cooperation - Isaku Okabe
Color design - Akemi Tejima
Art director - Takeshi Satou (Kusanagi)
Producers - Hiro Maruyama (Mainichi Broadcasting), Hiroomi Iketani (Sunrise), Shin Sasaki (Sunrise)
L'Arc En Ciel for Gundam 00 theme UPDATED
A news article from Sports Houchi announces L'Arc En Ciel's new song "Daybreak's Bell", on sale in October, will be the first theme song for Gundam 00.
Edit: Sony Music Online Japan posted their own announcement, indicating the single goes on sale October 10.
BB Senshi Sangokuden promo anime pics
Apron No Hito Mokei Production Diary posted some screenshots from the in-store BB Senshi Sangokuden promotional anime.
Bandai Pro Shop Meister Workshop pics
The Gundam Base.Side 1 put up a gallery of pics from the Bandai Pro Shop Meister Workshop held on July 12.
GFF Metal Composite Psyco Gundam pics
From Amazon Japan.
Gundam 00: The Race Car
The News & Topics link at the Toyota Team Kraft site announces the design of the car used by the Super GT Team Kraft sponsored by Bandai will sport a Gundam Exia theme to promote Gundam 00. The Toyota SC430-based Bandai Dunlop SC430 car sported a Hajime Katoki-designed color scheme in the first few races of the year but, starting with the 5th round, a new coloring by Gundam 00 mecha designer Kanetake Ebikawa will take over. Bandai will be putting out a 1/43 scale model of the car, to be named the "Bandai 00 Dunlop SC430".
Gundam Expo Tokyo 2007
Gundam.info gives details on Gundam Expo Tokyo 2007, to be held October 11 - 18. The event will have the following zones:
Successive Gundams Zone - An introduction to each Gundam production through graphics & video.
Gunpla History Zone - Gunpla displays and history.
Character Zone - Featuring life-sized cutouts of characters and a quiz corner.
Theater Zone - Screens a special video covering the Gundam series called "The Legend Of Gundam 2007".
Item Zone - A variety of Gundam merchandise: Gunpla, figures, games, etc.
Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Zone - With a large display and the latest promo video.
Experience Zone - Assemble Gunpla and play the latest games.
Sale Zone - Stuff to buy, including items commemorating the event.
Gundam Battle Chronicles for PSP
PS3 Fanatics reports an upcoming PSP title called Gundam Battle Chronicles will be coming to PSP. They expect an announcement sometime next week.
MSG TV Vol. 6 individual DVD cover
From Bandai Visual's site.
Upcoming merchandise pics
From GA Graphic, Akiba OS
MG Turn A Gundam
HG GOUF Ignited (Yzak Custom)
HG Blaze Zaku Phantom (Dearka Custom)
Chara Hobby 2007 limited merchandise
From the Bandai Hobby site:
PG RX-78-2 Gundam (Kunio Okawara illustration colors) - 15,000 yen
MG Char Custom Z'Gok (extra finish version) - 5,500 yen
HGUC Char Custom Rick Dom (coating version) - 3,500 yen
1/100 Live Concert Color Zaku Warrior (extra finish version) - 4,500 yen
1/35 Mechanic Collection Lancelot (color coating version) - 4,500 yen
Gundam Unicorn site update
The official site updated its Story section with a summary of Red Comet 1 and MS and character profiles. Along with the previously announced promo video commemorating the novel collections, a talk show with Harutoshi Fukui, Toru Furuya, and Shuuichi Ikeda will be held at Chara Hobby 2007 and "perhaps a surprise".
AMS-129 Geara Zulu:
"A mass-production model developed with Anaheim Electronics replacing the AMS-119 Geara Doga as the Neo Zeon's next main forces MS. Fashioning it in an orthodox Zeon style seems to have had symbolic meaning for the sake of boosting the organization's decling morale following the loss of their leader."
"33-years-old. Anaheim official who boards the Nahal Argama to prevent the opening of the Laplace's Box. Displays a fixation with the Unicorn."
Gundam Crisis vid report + facts & figures
BPTV put up the 2nd half of their Gundam Crisis report. Fujikyu Express Planning Department's Yusuke Watanabe states the attraction covers 2,000 sq. meters and took a year to develop at a total cost of 350 million yen.
Original SD Gundam to get DVD box
Sunrise announces the original SD Gundam anime, one of the last Gundam animations yet to see release on DVD, will come out in a limited, 4-disc SD Gundam Collection Box on November 23 for 25,200 yen (reserveration cutoff date is October 17). Created between 1988 and 1993, the original SD Gundam anime productions haven't been released in a video format since their VHS tapes came out 15-20 years ago.
Bandai Visual's site confirms that the Box will contain HD remasters of nearly every SD Gundam animation produced in those days: the SD Gundam Mk-I through Mk-V OVAs, the SD Gundam's Counterattack theatrical shorts, all 4 volumes of the SD Gundam Gaiden OVA, the theatrical SD Gundam Festival collection, the theatrical Musha, Knight, Commando SD Gundam Scramble short, and the Dawn Of Paparu Episode 103: Suginamu's Bride OVA. A potential sore point is the apparent omission of SD Gundam Wacky Races, a parody of Hanna Barbera's Wacky Races cartoon, from SD Gundam Mk-IV's listing.
Special features include an interview with director Tetsuro Amino and SD Gundam character designer/mangaka Kouji Yokoi, a reprint of Ganso SD Gundam, a Bandai Carddas card, and a special video called "SD Gundam: Past, Present, And Future".
Gundam 00 site update
Now featuring profiles of the enemy MS revealed the other day.
Gundam Unicorn collected volumes, promo video
Other Gundam Ace reports say the Gundam Unicorn novel will be released in collected volumes starting September 26, with Volumes 1 and 2 both on sale the same day. A promotional video intended for shops and use in TV commercials is also coming and will be screened at Chara Hobby 2007.
Original sound MS Gundam movie trilogy to hit DVD UPDATED
Reports from people with early copies of this month's Gundam Ace say a Mobile Suit Gundam Movie Memorial Box is scheduled to come out December 21 for 18,900 yen. Unlike the previously released movie trilogy on DVD, this one will be the original sound version (as originally shown in theaters, other home video formats, and on the Bandai Channel) and not the already available Special Edition version, which featured re-recorded voices by the original cast in 5.1, revised sound effects, and some changes in the placement of the background music. The Memorial Box will be produced for a limited time (until June 30, 2008) and feature an HD premium master.
Edit: Bandai Visual's site confirms the above news.
Gundam Crisis opening pics, video
Mainichi Mantan Web posted an extensive photo gallery of the opening day, featuring Yoshiyuki Tomino, Toru Furuya, and Shuuichi Ikeda.
Two video news reports can also be seen:
The BP report gives the following Gundam-related merchandise yearly sales figures for Bandai Namco Group:
2004 - 42.8 billion yen
2005 - 51.8 billion yen
2006 - 54.5 billion yen
Gundam 00 enemy MS
SVMS-01 Union Flag
"Union variable MS. It can change into a flight form but that doesn't suppose transformation during combat. Armed with a Linear Rifle that fires electromagnetically accelerated live rounds. For melee combat, a super-vibrating Sonic Blade. One part of the machine is also equipped with an energy-covered Plasma Sword blade. There are many variations of this unit."
Head height: 17.9 meters
Base weight: 67.1 tons
Designed by Hitoshi Fukuchi
AEU-09 AEU Enact (Demonstration colors)
"The latest MS developed by the AEU. A solar energy model, the MS itself can accept a direct supply of power from the orbital elevator's generation system. The basic design is based on the Union's Flag and shares many features such as the flight form transformation and armaments. "
Head height: 17.6 meters
Base weight: 66.8 tons
Designed by Hitoshi Fukuchi
"Human Progressive League (aka People's Reform League, etc...still no official English version yet. Pick your favorite translation.) mass-production MS. Many variations for ground and space-use exist. Compared to MS in other armies, the unit is unusual in that its very slow. But as much as it sacrifices in mobility, it has strong defensive abilities and can be loaded with heavyweight armaments. It's basic weaponry is a gun & Carbon Blade and though seen as an old model in contrast to other forces, its very reliable."
Head height: 18.1 meters
Base weight: 121.3 tons
Designed by Kenji Teraoka
This month's hobby mag news UPDATED AGAIN
MG Destiny Gundam - October, 5,040 yen (Special Edition that comes with parts like the Wings Of Light also in October for 7,350 yen)
HGUC Jagd Doga - Gyunei custom, October, 2,100 yen (first in planned HGUC CCA series)
Also announced is the new Speed Grade Collection line: 1/200 scale Gunpla that come completely painted on the runners. First two in the line are the RX-78 Gundam and Wing Gundam in September for 780 yen.
A limited edition HCM-Pro RX-78 Gundam (Rollout Colors Ver.) goes on sale in September for 2,100 yen.
Bandai Ent. receives SEED Destiny Final Plus
ANN reports Bandai Entertainment picked up the Final Plus revised ending for SEED Destiny, as well as Code Geass, Towards The Terra, Ayakashi Ayashi, and My-Otome Zwei.
The special DVD which the stores are giving away with a purchase of MG kits have revealed the 101st MG kit to be Destiny Gundam. It is scheduled for a fall release.
New figure news
GFF Full Armor Gundam - November, 4,725 yen
GFF Perfect Gundam - November, 4,725 yen
The info for both of the above says they'll have an increased range of motion because of a new inner frame.
MSiA Gundam Exia - November, 2,100 yen
MSiA Gundam Dynames - December, 2,625 yen
MSiA Gundam Kyrios - December, 2,625 yen
MSiA Gundam Virtue - December, 3,150 yen
Mostly not upcoming merchandise pics
From The Gundam Base.Side 1:
Gundam Collection Complex
MG Char's Gelgoog Ver. 2.0
MG RX-78 Gundam Ver. OYW 0079 TV color version
Keroro Gunsou Plamo Collection Tamama Robo Mk II
HGUC Blue Destiny Unit 1
HCM-Pro Akatsuki Full Set
BB Senshi Blaze Zaku Warrior
Action Base 2 Gray
Dengeki Hobby Web opens
Media Works opened Dengeki Hobby Web, a site for hobby fans with a news blog, a preview of the upcoming issue of the magazine, and a Dengeki Hobby terminology dictionary among other features.
MS Sensen 0079 footage UPDATED
Wii official site has couple videos featuring Toru Furuya playing the upcoming Wii Gundam game.
Edit: Meanwhile, the game's official site updated with pics of the MS Sensen 0079 Limited Color Gunpla MG RX-78.
Bonds Of The Battlefield update
The latest additions to the Bonds Of The Battlefield MS roster are two Zaku II F2's, one for the Zeon and one in Federation specs.
Comic BomBom to end
Yomiuri online reports Kodansha will suspend the monthly Comic Bombom at end of this year. The Dec 2007 (comes out Nov) will be the last issue. Instead Kodansha will launch a new monthly manga publication titled "Gekkan Shonen Rival", which will be targeted towards the middle school kids. The decline in readership is attributed for the suspension. Since its inception in 1981, Comic Bombom has been home to many Gundam publication like Plamo Kyoshiro manga, SD Gundam manga series, and various Gundam reference books.
Gundam Crisis opening ceremonies info, press preview UPDATED
Gundam Crisis official site posted info for the grand opening of the attraction on July 21. Guests Yoshiyuki Tomino, Toru Furuya, and Shuuichi Ikeda will all be on hand for two appearances during the day, including a talk show and lottery drawings for signed Gundam goods. Sunrise Gundam Division producer Shigeru Horiguchi will also appear.
OCN Anime Special Effects blog also has coverage of a press preview for Gundam Crisis. 200 members of the press and Sotsu Agency & Sunrise representatives were in attendance. Participants in other Fuji-Q attractions, such as AKB48, appeared as well as Nagano Olympic bronze medalist Tomomi Okazaki who, dressed in Earth Federation military garb, escorted press members.
Edit: More photos from the press preview are at Robot Watch
Amuro Ray comedian gets out the vote
To combat declining voter turnout among 20 to 40 year olds, stand-up comedian Osamu Wakai has been hired to appear in TV, radio, and print ads promoting Yamagata Prefecture's House Of Councillors general election. Wakai has made numerous television appearances in Japan with his act built around impersonating Amuro Ray. The TV commercial can be seen near the bottom of the election's homepage, featuring the promotion's catchphrase: "Election, ikimaaaasu!!"
Mizushima NT interview
Newtype had an interview with Mizushima which covered different topics from the Animage one.
Q: A 15-second long promo video appeared after Toward the Terra on June 2. Any response from the public?
A: They were a lot of responses and they were fast, too. A day after the promo, my friend who was eating at a restaurant overheard young people talking about the next Gundam by watching it on their mobile phones.
Q: This Gundam doesn't take place in ___ Era, instead it takes place in Seireki (anno domini aka AD) 2307.
A: I wanted to do it in AD. Since my knowledge regarding UC and CE is very low, doing it in AD would be a lot easier and allow me to bring in real world agendas.
Q: Was bringing a real world agenda the start of your concept?
A: Since this is Mobile Suit Gundam, I believe you are placed in a situation where you have to write something about war. If that is the case, it could be on something like a conflict or terror we see today. In a Gundam series, the Gundam serves as a weapon which allows me to do these things. It is possible to make this story a fantasy, but I didn't want to do that with this Gundam. I wanted an era based on today's world.
Q: Setsuna F. Seiei, the main character, is a former soldier from the Middle East. This smells like the ethnic and religious clash we have today.
A: 300 years from now, I don't think this problem will be solved. However, I don't want to present a solution to this social problem. If young people ended up searching on the net, it would be worth making the series. Instead of just watching the events, I'm personally hoping we can approach it more closely. For us, it is hard to understand the thoughts of people who are living under war conditions, but we can know a little bit by studying. I want to absorb them and express them on film. I do believe this is a hard thing to do.
There is another challenge. I'm aiming for a new innovation as far as MS action goes. Each group will have their own MS, unique in shape and movement as well. To put it simply, a normal MS will have realistic behavior. Since Gundams are super weapons, they will have super mechanic movements. These differences will be purposely put in place and I'm looking forward to how much variety of actions we can express. I want everyone to look forward to this because I am, too.
Q: Setsuna is described as a cool person who hardly reveals any emotion. Does this mean he is keeping his feelings inside himself regarding why he fights?
A: That is still a secret. *laughs* His past is difficult to understand which probably makes him look cool. Once people see the facts, they will understand.
Q: Why did you decide on him as the main character?
A: At first, I wanted a character that doesn't fit a typical Japanese person. Then I went through the process of what this young person and I would do if I were placed in these circumstances. I believe this is an important step when you develop a story.
Q: This is far away from the viewer's standpoint.
A: Yes, it is. Which is why I asked Yun Kouga for character designs. If this wasn't Kouga-san's designs, people might have been afraid, grossed out, or not even empathize. It may sound like this is all we're doing based on my conversation, but it is only part of it. This is an entertainment show so we'll have those other elements, too.
Q: Will there be any romance?
A: There will be plenty of romance even under these harsh circumstances. *laughs* Yousuke Kuroda is going to include lots of romance in the story.
Q: Which means a heroine character is going to appear?
A: We haven't made that public yet? There is one, a 24-year-old heroine. She's been through a lot of difficulties.
Q: Will she be Setsuna's primary interest?
A: Umm, we haven't decided that yet. Again, she's been through a lot...
Mizushima Animage interview
This month's anime magazines had interviews with Seiji Mizushima, the director of the Gundam 00 series. Below is a translation of an interview from Animage magazine. A Newtype magazine interview will be up tomorrow.
Q: Tell us how the title "Mobile Suit Gundam 00" came about?
A: It started as a temporary title, but it ended up being the official title. Originally I wanted to have a cool name, but we all forgot about it. Besides the obvious reason of starting from zero, there are other reasons. Right now it is a secret, but it will become a keyword as the story progresses.
Q: Reason behind why this series is set in the future of our world?
A: I personally have no deep knowledge about UC or CE so jumping into their worlds would be inappropriate and offensive to the staff who worked on those series. To me, it made perfect sense to make this series connected to our world. By doing this, it is easier to reflect our history and blend it with the series. At this moment, I am not focusing too much about making this ultra real or serious. This is entertainment after all so I'll mirror some of the real world issues in this series like I have with the anime I worked on in the past.
Q: What kind of Gundam story are you aiming for?
A: Don't know if this is a good or bad thing. I haven't watched a lot of the previous Gundam series. When I was first offered this job, I thought to myself, "Aren't there more Gundam-minded people than me?" Sunrise told me "We want to create a new Gundam so the director doesn't have to know a lot about Gundam." I have staff like Yousuke Kuroda and mecha designers, who are Gundam fans, so they will make sure it is Gundam while I will try to create without thinking too much that this is a Gundam series. Perhaps, this might be the theme, but I will bring my own Gundam-ness to the series.
Q: What is your Gundam-ness?
A: One is writing about war. Gundam is a weapon after all. This doesn't mean I'm going to be devoted to battles scenes. Instead I believe it is important to approach the war theme straightforward. (Gunota note: from here he tries to be funny) Other than that, a mobile weapon walking on 2 legs using beam sabers and a beam rifle. Then the basic stuff like Gundam is red, blue, yellow, and white. *laughs* This time, we are being more adventurous with the designs. If you have these 4 colors, they look like Gundam. *laughs*
Q: The pilots of the Gundams belong to a group who are trying to end war. What are you trying to say with this?
A: Let's take this one phrase, "Using force to end wars" and see what happens when someone carries out this contradicting act. "What do you start to see?" is one of things I want to write. Since this is a drama involving these characters, you will see "What happens to the world when they pilot the Gundam? What will these pilots do and how will they change?" This will be the gut of the series for sure.
Q: How will the MS designs and battle action turn out?
A: We hope to bring 2 styles: one is the super action style from SEED, second are actions that take advantage of the MS. When the plot of Gundams entering the conflict was being setup, we had a conversation saying "It might be all right for the Gundams to be super mecha." Therefore, the antagonist's MS was designed reflecting today's weapons and the Gundams were designed to confront them. It will feel like super mecha vs real mecha. The concept of the Gundam being far superior is one concept I had from the beginning. I don't know how much of that you will see, but the staff will follow along and hopefully you might see some odd looking scenes.
Q: Lastly, a message for the fans of the upcoming series.
A: While this will be a drama connecting people with people or people with the world, I will not be forcing answers on them. I'm hoping this series will motivate viewers into thinking. A Gundam novice like me is working real hard creating a new Gundam so I hope the previous fans and new fans will support us.
Yoshikazu Yasuhiko exhibit photo report
Ota☆suke has a photo report of the Yoshikazu Yasuhiko exhibit currently showing at the Kawasaki City Museum through August 19. In addition to his paintings from various anime he worked on, also being shown off are rough sketches from Yasuhiko's Gundam: The Origin manga and a 1/35 RX-78-2.
BB Sangokuden site update
The official BB Senshi Sangokuden site put up character profiles for the Shibai Sazabi, Toutaku Zaku, Ryofu Tallgeese, Chousen Qubeley, Chokaku Pallas Athene, Chouhou Bolinoak Samaan, Chouryou Messala, Roshoku GM Cannon, and Kousonsan EZ-8.
Info from Japanese boards is that the HCM-Pro Jegan will finally be released in September for 2,625 yen.
MSG TV Vol. 5 individual DVD cover
From Bandai Visual's site.
FG Gundam Exia pics
Datsu! Mikkabouzu managed to get its hands on a FG Gundam Exia kit. The first pic shows the artwork for several FG boxes sitting side-by-side, forming a larger image of a ship flying over Earth in the background.
There's also other shots of the Pro-Shop MG RX-78 and MG Turn A Gundam.
Gundam Crisis site update UPDATED
The official site for the Fuji-Q attraction has a story section with a promo image and a Gundam Mania section with a listing of limited edition goods at the Gundam Mania store.
Edit: The site just now put up the download section with screensavers and another tease for the 1/1 RX-78-2.
Bandai Namco aims for 60 billion yen in Gundam sales
As reported by ANN, Nikkei Net says Bandai Namco Holdings is aiming for 60 billion yen in Gundam-related sales for fiscal 2007 (by March 2008).
Sunrise official Gundam news portal UPDATED
Sunrise opened Gundam.Info, a Gundam news portal site collecting information on the anime, merchandise, and event info as well as original content that won't be found elsewhere.
The new site will replace Gundam Perfect Web, which is planned to be closed by the end of the year.
Gundam W Memorial Box Part 1 pic
Gundam 00 official site opens
The official site for Mobile Suit Gundam 00 launched today. In addition to the added MS and character sections, they also made available location and application into for the first episode preview screenings in September (the earliest of which takes place September 1).
There's also a promo video section which uses Bandai Channel-linked vids, though these can also be seen at the Gundam 00 MBS site and don't feature any new footage.