Deep Dive is a weekly column by Gundam expert Tom Aznable that points out the more unexpected aspects of the Gundam multiverse that make it into Gundam Build Divers. Nothing passes Tom’s eagle eye, but this column focuses specifically on rare sightings and deep cuts. Read on to see what you may have missed.
Episode 23: The Fateful Two
- Color scheme: GNX-803T GN-XIV (Commander Type), Mobile Suit Gundam 00: A Wakening of the Trailblazer (anime)
The Serpent is the main mobile suit of the Barton Foundation’s Mariemaia Army. This can be considered a mass production of the Gundam Heavyarms, which was also originally created by the Barton Foundation.
The Ahead is a mobile suit used by ace pilots belonging to the A-Laws in season 2 of Gundam 00. Here it appears in the colors of the GNX-IV, the latest version of the Ahead’s predecessor.
Satellite System Lunar Station, After War Gundam X (anime)
The lunar station originally appeared in Gundam X to and was primarily used to supply the power to Gundam X/Double X’s incredibly destructive satellite system beam cannon. In the series it could only be used during a full moon, but there doesn’t seem to be any such limitation in GBN.
MS-07H Gouf Flight Test Type, MSV (design series), Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (anime)
RGM-79FP GM Striker, Harmony of Gundam (design series)
The Gouf Flight Test Type (not to be confused with the Gouf Flight Type from 08th MS Team) is one of several MSV mobile suits that later made their animation in Zeta Gundam defending Jaburo from the AEUG. Above it is the GM Striker, a high-spec armored melee-specialized GM variant designed for the Sunrise-supervised Harmony of Gundam design series. It is featured prominently in the videogame Gundam Crossfire and its spin-off manga Mobile Suit Gundam: We’re Federation Hooligans!! The last mobile suit here to be destroyed by the Jegan Blast Master’s satellite cannon is a Guncannon equipped with spray missiles rather than its usual cannons. While this has been a popular equipment loadout that has been featured as an option in most Guncannon toys and models, it was never actually used in Mobile Suit Gundam and only existed as production art.
GAT-SO2R N Dagger N, SEED Destiny-MSV (design series)
ZGMF-2000 Heine Westenfluss’ GOUF Ignited, Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny (anime)
The N Dagger N is, in a nutshell, to the Blitz Gundam what the Freedom Gundam is to the Strike or what the Justice Gundam is to the Aegis. While it’s actually based on the 105 Dagger, the N Dagger N is equipped with the same Neutron Jammer Canceller the Freedom and Justice and is powered by a nuclear reactor. It incorporates many aesthetic elements of the Blitz Gundam as well as its signature Mirage Colloid stealth system. The first N supposedly stands for “Neutron,” and the second for “Ninja,” after its developers: Ninja Works (aka the Shinobi Mafia).
Behind the N Dagger N, we can see Heine Westenfluss’ GOUF Ignited. Heine Westenfluss is actually a character based on Takanori Nishikawa, better known as TM Revolution. The music of TM Revolution became a part of what defined Gundam SEED’s style, and when the show’s sequel season came around, Nishikawa voiced a character based on himself: the ZAFT Gouf Ignited pilot Heine Westenfluss. Nishikawa’s last name translates into “west river,” and Westenfluss is simply a German translation of his name.
The GM Cold Climate Type’s most prominent appearance in Gundam is getting completely trashed by Zeon’s Cyclops Team during the opening minutes of the first episode of Gundam 0080. It doesn’t fare much better here in its blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo against Tigerwolf’s Jiyan Altron either.
MSZ-008 Z II, Z-MSV (design series)
MS-07A Gouf (Early Type), Mobile Suit Gundam: Zeonic Front (video game)
The Z II (pronounced like Zed Two or Zettsu) is a successor to the Zeta Gundam, but instead of using its predecessor’s frankly bizarre transformation it instead uses one based on the Methuss. This concept later showed up in Gundam UC as well in the ReZEL, which you can think of as almost a mass production version of the Z II. By that same token, an earlier MS in the ReZEL’s line, the Re-GZ, is standing right next to the Z II in this frame.
The most prominent death cameo in this frame, however, is a relatively obscure Gouf variant that appears in the PlayStation 2 game Zeonic Front. The Gouf Early Type is an inferior, pre-mass production version of the typical Gouf. In the game, it is the first non-Zaku mobile suit that your squad receives, just in time for a mission where you face Guntanks for the first time and have to destroy a Big Tray land battleship.
MS-14D Desert Gelgoog, ZZ-MSV (design series), Gundam UC (anime)
MAJ-V34 Jiachong, Mobile Suit Gundam 00 (anime)
The Desert Gelgoog is a Gelgoog variation from the late One Year War that still finds use by Zeon remnants as late as 0096, popping up in an attack on Torrington Base during the fourth episode of Gundam UC. To its right is the Human Reform League’s Jiachong tank from Gundam 00.
Zamared Mantha, SD Gundam Gaiden: Seikihei Monogatari (card game)
MS-06S Gaia’s Zaku II Commander Type, MSV-R (design series)
When the Black Tri-stars use Zakus, they’re typically seen in High Mobility Types. This unit’s backpack (the original Gundam Zaku design lacks visible nozzles) gives away that this one is the more common Zaku II Commander Type.
MS-06J Zaku II (Alternate Colors), MSV (design series)
It’s not exactly clear if this Zaku that Tigerwolf cuts in half is a specific Zaku II variation, but its red mono-eye and color scheme look somewhere between designer Kunio Okawara’s alternate artwork colors and the MS-06J Wetland Type variant.