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Graham

Bandai 1/72 Scale Macross Frontier Plastic Models

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The latest from the Gundam lines have been in more and more ABS, and it is a whole hell of a pain to glue...

Wow. Well that is disappointing news. I may have to wait for some reviews of these kits before I pick any up.

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Well, nothing I've seen or read about here has changed my initial assumptions with Bandai (unfortunately). Yes, the overall shapes and proportions are good (as can be expected when they have access to the original CAD digital files). However with any transformable model (or toys) the logistics of transformation always affects the realism of the model (they just can't make hinges and sliders small enough to be hidden successfully - just look at that massive ugly hinge on the top of the fighter mode at the root of both of the main wings!). I just wished that they just concentrated on the model and made that as realistic as possible and left the transformation to the toys (toys are meant to be played with while models are meant to be looked at).

As with all Bandai models, even in their EX line, they never seem to add anything (or make up details) that wasn't in the original anime artwork - which is a shame. Their Yukikaze EX models are a prime example of good faithful reproduction, but with nothing added to embellish them - they even retain the stupid panel lines that end in the middle of a section with no apparent intersection (see the top/back of the airframe) - it just makes no construction/assembly sense! What elevates the Hasegawa models is their artistic license in adding appropriate details (not just revits, but proper brake lines, hydraulic reserviors in the gear wells, actuator structs, APU access panels, re-fuelling panels, avionics bay access, engine bay access... the list goes on!). Its just not practical to add all the details in the anime art when you see it swoosh by in a few frames and the limited time its on screen, its always in motion. However, a model is static, and meant to be admired, at that level of scrutiny the few anime lines just don't hold up well. Perhaps at this point I should also clarify my position of revits. Yes, old aircraft are pop-revited, and newer aircraft are usually countersunk allen head capscrews - but they are usually represented on small scale models as little tiny dents (so we call them revits, but they are not the old "Titanic" iron revits of the Industrial Era). Has anyone seen the new Hasegawa F-18F kits, they have tons of revits on a new aircraft and give the overall model a tremendous sense of scale. Yes, it probably not "realistic" to include all these panel lines and revits on scale aircraft that is so small and modern - but these are just "artistic cues" that gives a model a sense of scale. Look at all the Sci-Fi filming minatures that have tons of panel lines or shading that make it look like the thing is made up of thousands of tiny panels (like the Starship Enterprise Refit or E versions) - realistically wouldn't someone have painted the entire vessel after assembly?!, no its a visual cue to give something small a false sense of scale and grandeur.

Its the inclusion of familar "real-world" cues that grounds science fiction designs into something believable.

I for one is grateful for anything that gives something as small as a 1/72 scale plane detail and visual interest - otherwise you'd just have a model like those painted wooden airliners in a travel agency's office - nobody really ever admires those or give them more than a second's glance. In fact those giant gaping seams and hinges on the top (most visible portion of the model) due to its ability to transform do exactly the opposite! it makes the model seem smaller and more "toy" like. That hinge on the back seems like it would be at least 5ft long and 12" in diameter - wouldn't you think in the future they could come up with a better way of hinging something - if we were to take that line of thinking that in the future they'd come up with better ways to put together an aircraft than with revits?!

Bandai doesn't have to add revits to make the VF-25 better, and yes there could be a newer futuristic way of fastening/assembling aircraft, but it needs to add whatever that would be AND it should make an attempt to add more than just what the anime shows because it is a static model (maybe smaller exhaust vents, panels or some other sci-fi patterns... and the like). I just haven't seen Bandai do much of that... even the PG models are exactly what's been drawn, I even have their giant 1/350 scale Yamato, while its a technological marvel of a kit, its still lacks any details on such a huge kit that gives it a sense of scale (other than the photo-etched railings - but that was in the original anime lineart). Personal, I hate their multicoloured sprues and plastic, what a waste... I have to prime them all (because of the bright saturated color base) and paint everything anyways. In fact, its just an added step to prime everything. Plus I always cut away all those "snap" pins, they never really register properly with the seam and are just a pain - another "extra" step one needs with Bandai models. I guess its great for the younger audience and those just learning to build, but personally its more work for me to build a Bandai kit.

That all being said, of course I will buy the kits when they come out :rolleyes: if only because they are the only ones that will be available for a while anyways. I had hoped they would have had a little more out than just the painted prototypes by now - however, lets just hope they take their time and not rush it out just to burn all us early adopters and release a fixed version 1.5 of the kits a few months later like they did with their Yukikaze kits! :unsure:

Edited by wm cheng

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After watching ep07, I want a VF-27 model so much. Be it from Bandai (with all the "problems" that been mentioned here), still it will be fun to build. I can't wait to see if they will release it soon (after the VF-25 kit).

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Does anyone have a picture or drawing that shows what this VF-27 that everyone's talking about looks like? I must of missed it in the previous episodes (however I haven't seen the latest 7th episode yet).

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There is a batt mode screen shot here:

http://macrossworld.com/mwf/index.php?s=&a...st&p=596050

I think it is also shown briefly toward the end of the OP, when a VF-27 cross flight with Alto's VF-25.

Anyone else have a better picture?

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So its an off-shoot of the SV-51?

There is a batt mode screen shot here:

http://macrossworld.com/mwf/index.php?s=&a...st&p=596050

I think it is also shown briefly toward the end of the OP, when a VF-27 cross flight with Alto's VF-25.

Anyone else have a better picture?

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I'd probably buy 3 of each variant and permanently pose them in the 3 different modes o.o;;;;; Probably. The scary thing is I may not the only one that thought about this ;)

After looking at the pictures of the prototype, I have exactly the same feeling. Build 3 static model in each mode. Paint chip and poor fitting seam lines doesn't make a good looking model to display.

Damn, Bandai will earn 3 times the profit from me and at the same time maybe take over some of the perfect tranforming toy market share from Yamato (given the price advantage).

Smart move Bandai.

I am not happy with the lack of details, but maybe these model kit from Bandai will be a good starting point for some master here to add some details and build a superb kit.

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So its an off-shoot of the SV-51?

It definately looks very sv-51-ish to me. :) I love it.

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nice pics Save!! finally some toys/models of Frontier stuff... fighter of course always looks best... =]

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Gosh, a SV-51-like Valk without the pope head! It looks oh so pretty.... they MUST come up with this toy/model kit!

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Gosh, a SV-51-like Valk without the pope head! It looks oh so pretty.... they MUST come up with this toy/model kit!

That sums it up pretty nicely :p... I think that this VF-25 is my favorite design for now...

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Guest sh002

these will look cool in my 1/72 macross collection. i still love the transformable 1/100 vf-2ss even with its flaws.

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unfortunately the more i look at the vf-25 kit..the more sucky it becomes.

especially after looking at the Shizuoka hobby thread where you can see the Bandai kit and the Hasegawa kit side by side...makes the Bandai kit really looking like a crude toy. I know it's probably not a fair comparison since the bandai is still a prototype and not as nicely painted...but I'm afraid I agree with mwcheng's assessment. From what I can see so far, Bandai is aiming for the mass audience and making something more like HG/HGUC/MG gundam kits than the more modeler-oriented UC HardGraph series.

I can only hope that the final product will be alot more detailed.

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Well, nothing I've seen or read about here has changed my initial assumptions with Bandai (unfortunately). Yes, the overall shapes and proportions are good (as can be expected when they have access to the original CAD digital files). However with any transformable model (or toys) the logistics of transformation always affects the realism of the model (they just can't make hinges and sliders small enough to be hidden successfully - just look at that massive ugly hinge on the top of the fighter mode at the root of both of the main wings!). I just wished that they just concentrated on the model and made that as realistic as possible and left the transformation to the toys (toys are meant to be played with while models are meant to be looked at).

As with all Bandai models, even in their EX line, they never seem to add anything (or make up details) that wasn't in the original anime artwork - which is a shame. Their Yukikaze EX models are a prime example of good faithful reproduction, but with nothing added to embellish them - they even retain the stupid panel lines that end in the middle of a section with no apparent intersection (see the top/back of the airframe) - it just makes no construction/assembly sense! What elevates the Hasegawa models is their artistic license in adding appropriate details (not just revits, but proper brake lines, hydraulic reserviors in the gear wells, actuator structs, APU access panels, re-fuelling panels, avionics bay access, engine bay access... the list goes on!). Its just not practical to add all the details in the anime art when you see it swoosh by in a few frames and the limited time its on screen, its always in motion. However, a model is static, and meant to be admired, at that level of scrutiny the few anime lines just don't hold up well. Perhaps at this point I should also clarify my position of revits. Yes, old aircraft are pop-revited, and newer aircraft are usually countersunk allen head capscrews - but they are usually represented on small scale models as little tiny dents (so we call them revits, but they are not the old "Titanic" iron revits of the Industrial Era). Has anyone seen the new Hasegawa F-18F kits, they have tons of revits on a new aircraft and give the overall model a tremendous sense of scale. Yes, it probably not "realistic" to include all these panel lines and revits on scale aircraft that is so small and modern - but these are just "artistic cues" that gives a model a sense of scale. Look at all the Sci-Fi filming minatures that have tons of panel lines or shading that make it look like the thing is made up of thousands of tiny panels (like the Starship Enterprise Refit or E versions) - realistically wouldn't someone have painted the entire vessel after assembly?!, no its a visual cue to give something small a false sense of scale and grandeur.

Its the inclusion of familar "real-world" cues that grounds science fiction designs into something believable.

I for one is grateful for anything that gives something as small as a 1/72 scale plane detail and visual interest - otherwise you'd just have a model like those painted wooden airliners in a travel agency's office - nobody really ever admires those or give them more than a second's glance. In fact those giant gaping seams and hinges on the top (most visible portion of the model) due to its ability to transform do exactly the opposite! it makes the model seem smaller and more "toy" like. That hinge on the back seems like it would be at least 5ft long and 12" in diameter - wouldn't you think in the future they could come up with a better way of hinging something - if we were to take that line of thinking that in the future they'd come up with better ways to put together an aircraft than with revits?!

Bandai doesn't have to add revits to make the VF-25 better, and yes there could be a newer futuristic way of fastening/assembling aircraft, but it needs to add whatever that would be AND it should make an attempt to add more than just what the anime shows because it is a static model (maybe smaller exhaust vents, panels or some other sci-fi patterns... and the like). I just haven't seen Bandai do much of that... even the PG models are exactly what's been drawn, I even have their giant 1/350 scale Yamato, while its a technological marvel of a kit, its still lacks any details on such a huge kit that gives it a sense of scale (other than the photo-etched railings - but that was in the original anime lineart). Personal, I hate their multicoloured sprues and plastic, what a waste... I have to prime them all (because of the bright saturated color base) and paint everything anyways. In fact, its just an added step to prime everything. Plus I always cut away all those "snap" pins, they never really register properly with the seam and are just a pain - another "extra" step one needs with Bandai models. I guess its great for the younger audience and those just learning to build, but personally its more work for me to build a Bandai kit.

That all being said, of course I will buy the kits when they come out :rolleyes: if only because they are the only ones that will be available for a while anyways. I had hoped they would have had a little more out than just the painted prototypes by now - however, lets just hope they take their time and not rush it out just to burn all us early adopters and release a fixed version 1.5 of the kits a few months later like they did with their Yukikaze kits! :unsure:

I decide whether a model is good or bad by how easy it is to put together. The skills of filling in seams, masking and gluing parts came around because the models needed it to be complete. If there was a kit out there that has perfect detail, does not need glue and hides seams perfectly, there wouldn't be the need to use those skills. I don't get why anyone would complain that they wouldn't have to. IMO it's the paint job that makes the model and anything that can make the painting process easier is welcomed. Bandai has done that with their engineering skills. Hiding seam lines so there's no need for putty, snap fitting parts so glue won't mess up the paint and making multi sectional parts so no masking is need and using ABS for durability is what other companies should do. If Bandai can make their models with Hasegawa's detail then that would be wonderful.

Hasegawa doesn't hide seams either (VF-1 nose area) and their detail is so fine that it gets covered up in priming, sanding and painting. Maybe you haven't put together some of their newer MG kits but they are rock solid. If you always paint everything, why does it matter what color the plastic comes in? A good paint job requires priming anyways. Maybe you were building bootleg kits so that's why the snap pins don't line up.

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Hasegawa (...) detail is so fine that it gets covered up in priming, sanding and painting.

A good paintjob with an few fine layers from the airbrush will not cover up detail. Ocassionally you may lose a little detail due to sanding, though.

If you always paint everything, why does it matter what color the plastic comes in?

If the colours are different, to give a consistent tone, you will have to apply many coats of primer... then you WILL lose detail.

I've built plenty of kits which are not bootleg, which have pin location issues.

Anyway, on to the issue...

I'm disappointed by Bandai's approach. I thought that the fact that the toy people were getting the 1/60, that Bandai might do a more reputable job and echo Hasegawa's attention to fine detail, but those big seams and hinges in the their 1/72 execution leave a lot to be desired. 'Transforming Models' do not work - any fine paint job will not hold up to transformation. Paint chips, scuffing, and delamination of the finish will ensue after a bit of 'playing'. My models are not for 'play' - they are for viewing only.

Never the less, I'm happy to be able to get hold of one. I will be filling those 'transformation' seams and rescribing with a nice fine, thin line. Unfortunately a lot of people who would like the same level of execution may not be able do this for various reasons. The one thing that could wreck the party is the one thing I see on the prototype - and I hope its just a prototype issue - a thick canopy.

I'm quite excited to see the Vajra done as well. Gonna grab one of those. Personally, I hope the whole line goes well, and Bandai release some of the other air/spacecraft we've seen in the series to date, love the designs!

And who knows.... there may be more original 'hero' designs in forthcoming episodes!

:blink::huh::lol:

Edited by PetarB

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A good paintjob with an few fine layers from the airbrush will not cover up detail. Ocassionally you may lose a little detail due to sanding, though.

True even seams and details on 1/35 scale sometimes get covered

If the colours are different, to give a consistent tone, you will have to apply many coats of primer... then you WILL lose detail.

Yup just look at my 1/55 Miria took ages trying to get the colour straight and that was just from two different manufacturers primer that I used. Had to rescribe the hell outta that one

I've built plenty of kits which are not bootleg, which have pin location issues.

Even Hobby Japan magazines bitched about that one I have had to glue at least one part on all my Gundams and none of those were boots. but thats part of the fun IMO. If I wanted something that just went together the same as everyone elses I'd buy Lego and paint that.

Never the less, I'm happy to be able to get hold of one. I will be filling those 'transformation' seams and rescribing with a nice fine, thin line.

I for one will build them fixed the same way I have always made the Variable kits, sand fill sand fill sand etc :)

I'm quite excited to see the Vajra done as well. Gonna grab one of those.

Hoo yah!! bring that baby on :)

And who knows.... there may be more original 'hero' designs in forthcoming episodes!

Hope so this will undoubtably spur Hasegawa to explore more avenues themselves, and thus make it a better world for everyone. Let the Macross Model war begin.

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Sorry if this has been asked before or if it's so 'obvious' that I sound stupid - but here goes:

Are these kits snap fit? Are they prepainted? Or do I have to glue/paint them?

I'm assuming they're snap fit and pre-painted - but as I've never actually bought a Bandai Macross kit - I don't know. Is it like with the Gundam HG and MG or no?

VFTF1

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one could always slice off the offending hinges and make new ones out o fphotoetch brass. This would also allow you to tighten the fit tolerances in the gaps. But hey im known for not liking most of bandais mecha.

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'Transforming Models' do not work - any fine paint job will not hold up to transformation. Paint chips, scuffing, and delamination of the finish will ensue after a bit of 'playing'. My models are not for 'play' - they are for viewing only.
I don't have paint problem with my bandai vf1/vf19/vf2 transformable kits. The tamiya paint has resist, for now, at 4/5 transformations and in my point of view it's fun to know that our kits can be transform.

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Weird... Bandai has been doing simple sci-fi models for like 30 years, and each generation get easier to build and more pre-painted, and somehow people would expect they would do Tamiya/Hasegawa style for Macross F?

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Almost no kit in the world is truly pre-painted. They can however, be molded in numerous small colors so that they can have intricate patterns, yet still require no painting.

Think of say, a Yamato 1/48 Milia. It's molded mostly in red, with a lot of white parts. Most of it has no paint. Just a bit here and there where needed to "correct" the scheme. If you removed all the paint a 1/48 Milia has, it'd still have roughly the correct scheme, since the plastic is molded fairly close to the right colors to start with.

A modern high-end Bandai MG kit is molded with even more attention paid to colors---even small bits are often a separate piece with a separate inherent color. All the little yellow vents on a Gundam? A good kit will have every one of them a separate little yellow piece, to have the proper "color accent" against the blue and white parts. A lesser kit would have them molded onto the "background" piece, and you'd have to paint them yelow.

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It's also possible that these MacrossF VF-25 kits will be similar to Bandai's "Ex" line kits except at a lower price point. (Snap-fit but molded in single color - probably white or gray). What's the general opinion on Bandai's Yukikaze kits?

I do however think that if the kits are MG style, it may help drive up sales of kits. Which wouldn't be so bad as larger sales may mean more additional merchandising and even perhaps more funding from Bandai for future Macross works (anime-wise and toy-wise).

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Even Hobby Japan magazines bitched about that one I have had to glue at least one part on all my Gundams and none of those were boots. but thats part of the fun IMO. If I wanted something that just went together the same as everyone elses I'd buy Lego and paint that.

That's weird. I've built many kits from SDs to PGs and everything in between and none of them had issues with the pins not going where they're suppose to.

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That's weird. I've built many kits from SDs to PGs and everything in between and none of them had issues with the pins not going where they're suppose to.

Among more experienced Gunpla makers, its common for them to remove the pins entirely for a better fit.

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Judging from the price point, it's likely that these will be be HG tech rather than MG tech.

Hopefully in about 3-4 years, Hasegaw will get a shot at the licence. A Hasegawa VF-15 Fighter and Battroid would be a thing of awesome beauty.

Graham

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Since Bandai has the license, I'd prefer the Perfect Grade treatment.

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http://ga.sbcr.jp/mreport/009935/

GA Graphic has very clear pics and closeups of the prototypes. You can see the surface engravings on Ozuma's machine, I guess the back parts are pretty much final:

http://ga.sbcr.jp/mreport/009935/images/11.jpg

The exposed shoulder hinges could use some additional detail. I love the head sculpt.

The closeup of the Gerwalk nose shows a recess for the SMS logo?

http://ga.sbcr.jp/mreport/009935/images/18.jpg

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First off, thank you to everyone updating us with pictures and details!!! I don't get to spend a lot of time on line.

I think things are looking good for just prototypes. The media and method used for making these prototypes will really limit the details that can be shown. We can only speculate for now.

Remember, Banadai's BIG market is not us old farts waiting on the latest and greatest Macross kit; it's the younger less experienced modelers. Some just want to put something together from that cool movie they just saw! Even with the following of varied ages Macross has (none more loyal than me).

What I bet we can expect to see from this kit: the decent overall shape we've seen, ABS in some joints, polycaps, and I'm praying for water-slide decals! I'm keeping positive for now. Even the sculpts shown so far look good. - MT

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From these photos I should say I do really like the battroid, but not the fighter. As other people point out the break points look noticeable in fighter mode and I think the intakes look oversized. In some way it kinda reminds me a bit of the VF-2ss Macross II line (to use a more apt analogy than the VF-1 comment.) Its got the same design philosophy with a coloured canopy, decent detail but the proportions seem a bit off in fighter mode (The VF-2 was wider I think, while this one seems a bit fat from the side view.) I'll probably buy one and add it to my collection of 1/72 Battroids. I'd love to see it with Ozma's armoured battroid.

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Judging from the price point, it's likely that these will be be HG tech rather than MG tech.

Hopefully in about 3-4 years, Hasegaw will get a shot at the licence. A Hasegawa VF-15 Fighter and Battroid would be a thing of awesome beauty.

Graham

I would say they're closer to MGs with a 4200 yen ($40USD) price tag. Not a lot of HG kits go for more than 2800 yen. There's not much room for internal frames so they'll probably go with something like the older MG with limited internal frame.

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Since Bandai has the license, I'd prefer the Perfect Grade treatment.

I can only wish for a PG in 1/32 or 1/48 scale. I'd pay good money for it. Lol.

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After seeing these pictures i may have to reverse my opinion on this particular model. I may give it a chance. I just dont have much faith in bandai overall. Their tumbler, while a good model could have been so much more even at that size. Same with the big hovertruck. Details could have been much sharper and more defined in it. I will reserve final judgement for when the kit actually appears.

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Been looking at the photos to try to figure out where the leg fins go in battroid mode.

I looks like the partially slide into the lower leg, with the end of the fins still exposed.

Graham

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Yeah, but the interesting thing is that in that Battroid mode pic, the top of the fin is sticking out to the rear.

However, in fighter mode, the fin is actually on the front of the leg, same as the VF-1.

Graham

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