I'm loving this toy, thought I'd chime in after seeing all these amazing photos and really glad to see people taking them out of the boxes and playing and panel lining them! Bravo. Toys are mean to be played that's what I liked best with this one, I love playing with it and handling it. It doesn't feel fragile or over complicated - its a joy to transform, I hope the joints hold up.
I use the Flory Wash (its water/clay based and completely inert to the plastic). I use black and two shades, a light grey and dark grey for the panel lines, I use the black for all the vents and moveable surfaces, dark grey for the access panels and slats that's supposed to move and light grey for the rest of the panel lines that make up the rest of the plane, I find this a bit more subtle and gives a bit of life to the paneling. Just adding that outside black ring all around the circular vernier thruster makes a huge difference! I also added the Ejection Triangle graphic (really unforgivable Bandai!) and the "VF" on the legs as for me this defines the TV from the DRYL - also its the first VF-1 that I would want to display in Battroid mode often (fighter has always been my favourite).
I haven't decided on post-shading it yet, but might do a light one with some subtle streaking to tie it into the rest of my collection as I have to seal it in with a semi-satin clear coat anyways, but I do love the light grey satin finish Bandai chose.
I always have a fondness for the original old 1/48 from Yamato - mainly due to the fact that they were optimized for fighter mode which is my favorite mode. There's no doubt that this is the most advanced VF-1 toy and the improvements all add up to a great toy that wants to be played with. However I feel a little disappointed that they seemed to have missed some opportunities if they wanted to genuinely make this the ultimate Valkyrie. Since they were doing the 1/48 scale again, I would have thought they would have taken some cues from the Club-M resin 1/48 model.
Wish list (comments/thoughts/suggestions);
-they could have included some more panel lines with some rivet details (there's really no more panel lines than the old Yamato 1/48)
-I do love the detail at the top of the chest in Battroid mode with the edge detail all around and folding flaps
-I wished they included a double joint in the knee so it can truely kneel and fold back on itself
-I wished the canopy was done in two pieces, opaque frame with clear inserts (like the Club-M model)
-with all those crazy/non-canon extra markings, they missed the ejection triangle and cockpit display?! really Bandai?
-wished instead of the rectangular holes in the legs, they used hidden magnets to hold the fast packs in the future
-those three long rectangular indented details on the leg exterior are too high and interferes with the "U.N. SPACY" lettering in an unattractive way
-hated that notch under the wing root that seats the arm/shoulder pivot
-I'd love to see the swing wings geared to move with each other, or have detents at the very lease to they are extended in a symmetrical fashion
-would love to see the wing cross section slight thicker (more of an airfoil shape) so the mounts for the weapons become flush
-the wingtip slimelight, red & blue nav lights should be clear inserts at this scale
-the back airbrake should have see through louvered slats
-the legs should have removable exterior that show off the leg interior mechanics like the 1/48 Hasegawa model
-I don't mind the flaps (they work for me but if mine were broken or floppy then it would be annoying)
-I wish the ventral fins had a much stiffer joint and something that locks them in position (I wouldn't miss this if it were fixed instead of jointed)
-I wished the vernier thrusters were actually cones with a fin on top like the 1/48 Hasegawa model instead of a flat printed graphic
-would have loved to see those lighted gimmicks Bandai teased us with the 1/35 scale
-the gunpod is just too big, it needs to be 10-15% smaller please
That all said I am looking forward to the Roy's VF-1S.