A lot of work went into this review. Not only did I have to build the new 1/100 MG Wing Gundam Proto Zero EW Ver., but I also had to make sure I had everything complete on my 1/100 MG Wing Gundam and 1/100 MG XXXG-01W Wing Gundam EW Ver. which had previously been pillaged for parts for other things, and then I had to find the time to get all the pictures I needed. That alone took longer than I anticipated (exacerbated by some family issues, which goes without saying). Well, now that (I think) I’ve got everything I need allow me to proceed with not only a review of the MG Wing Proto Zero but also a look at the other Master Grade Wing kits.
For the purpose of being consistent and easy to understand I will refer to the 1/100 MG Wing Gundam as the Wing, the Wing Gundam Zero Endless Waltz Ver as the Zero, and the XXXG-01W Wing Gundam EW Ver. as the Ver Ka as they are the same kit with only slight color changes (and a couple other things).
Overall Look: 8/10
I both like the look of the Proto and don’t. While the body looks very much like the other MG Wings (Zero aside), which is a good thing, the backpack throws me off a bit. Perhaps it is because those giant things on its back don’t look much like wings or the wings I’m used to seeing on the other Wing Gundam Master Grades. Wing fans will love the details right down to the extra use of red around the chin area, but it’s not for me.
Where does a score of 8 in this category place the Proto compared to the others?
I give the Wing Gundam a 9 because I think it’s the best looking one with those streamlined wings.
I give the Zero a score of 9 simply because those giant white wings look fantastic.
And I give the Ver Ka an 8 because I think it’s just a little too busy with all those curves and yet sharp angles.
I do like the colors of the Proto. That darker blue makes it seem more menacing than it would have looked in the standard Gundam blue and while almost never a fan of the yellow found on Gundam model kits I think the yellow on this guy works well.
Wing Gundam gets a 9 just like the proto because they share the same colors and I like to be fair (actually I may like the colors found on the wings better here than on the Proto).
Zero gets an 8 due to a lack of yellow which may seem odd because I just wrote how I’m not a fan of Gunpla yellow but with all that white and the heavy dose of blue in the torso and shoulder area the Zero could use something to break it up.
Ver Ka gets a 9 because I really dig how they’ve separated the colors throughout the kit. If anything the Ver Ka is the most eye-catching of the four.
Two rifles! Most kits give you one rifle so having a pair is awesome but these are made even more awesome because they can join together thanks to some cleverly designed movable parts.
You just need to fold one handle in and you’re good to go.
(For the record, I like the use of yellow here.)
The shield is a very unique shape but that is because it’s meant to represent something when transformed into its Bird mode which also utilizes the shield’s ability to elongate.
You’re also given a couple of beam saber handles and blades.
Providing a score for the weapons for the other Wing MGs gets a little tricky.
The Wing Gundam comes with its own shield and rifle.
The shield doesn’t change shape like that of the Proto but it does open to allow storage of a beam saber handle.
While the rifle is similar in that it opens slightly in the middle allowing you to remove the ammunition canisters.
It also comes with the very same Beam sabers you will find included with the Proto.
Let’s give the Wing a 9 here.
This category is almost not fair to the Zero. He doesn’t carry around any type of shield so just has two rifles and two beam sabers.
But Zero’s rifles combine just like those from the Proto. The connection is done differently but works just as well. For the Zero’s rifles you fold down a side of the rifle.
Then do likewise on the opposite side of the other rifle and they join together and stay there without problem.
The combining rifles is a plus for the Zero but no shield? Shields are some of my favorite things. I think an 8 is appropriate.
The Ver Ka is the most loaded out of all of them.
The rifle you get is similar to that found with the Wing Gundam.
You also get the shield similar in shape to those that come with the other wings and a couple of extra.. somethings that hold even more rounds for the rifle. Beam sabers (not pictured) as well. Ver. Ka gets a 10 here.
We have to cut the Wing Gundams some slack here. Not only do they have to stand up with those enormous attachments on their backs but they also have to transforms (except for the Zero who has even more enormous things on this back.) That said, the Proto actually does pretty well in this area. There is enough range of motion in the hips and knees to allow him to take a deeper stance.
However the design of the feet make it a little harder for him to stand as I couldn’t seem to get his foot flat on the ground.
Overall I felt he held up well (pun intended). But I can’t just evaluate its ability to stand up. I also need to take into account the articulation in the wings and there is plenty to be found. More on that later.
But what about the others? Let’s start with the Wing Gundam.
With the smaller sized wings on its back the Wing Gundam is even more posable and can even mantain balance with the wings in various positions.
I would say it is the most posable of the four and would back it up with a score of 8.
The Zero again seems to be a case all its own. While the legs are flexible there is no way he’s going to be able to stand up. In fact, the legs are almost too loose especially at the knees.
And the hips lack any real range of motion. You can only open them at a small angle meaning even if his legs were stiffer and his wings lighter you wouldn’t get much in the way of poses anyway.
But when evaluating the articulation of this kit I have to take the designs of those monster wings into consideration and those things turn out to be very impressive. I’ll write more about them later on under another category but I’ll just leave you with this picture for the time being.
See. There is quite a bit of articulation to be found in this kit just not in the lower body. For all that, we’ll give the Zero a score of 8.
The Ver Ka might be the least articulate of the four Master Grade Wing Gundam kits. It suffers from the same lack of movement in the hips that is found on the Zero.
But also has relatively heavy wings on its back that aren’t helped by a rather poor connection to the backpack meaning they will sag and affect the poses you can do. The best I could pull off was this.
Which is kind of cool except that I had to ‘cheat’ to do it. I used the ankle armor as a third point of support.
Add to that the fact that the wings are more like one big section without the ability to open or articulate like those on the others and I have to give this guy a 6.
Build Design: 10/10
The Proto is designed really well. Sure it is very similar to the Wing Gundam which preceded it in the Master Grade lineup but it’s got plenty of ‘new’ design elements we don’t see on that kit or other wing Gundams.
A huge part of that is the transformation, of course, and we’ll get to that but before I attempt to change it to its flight mode let’s look at some of the other design elements that make the Proto great. I’ve already mentioned the cool design of the rifles but let’s look at how they are held by the Proto.
A swappable hand part (cringe) with a tab slots into the hollow in the handle of the rifle. This you then put into position on the hand of the Proto.
At this time it works fine though I can imagine that connection becoming weaker as time progresses.
The shoulders feature a lot of little parts that have to be seen to be appreciated.
You can also store the beam saber handle underneath a hatch on the top of the shoulder.
The side skirts have two armor parts that separate.
While this does nothing for the articulation or transformation of the kit it is pretty cool.
And we know that those wings open.
This is accomplished by a couple of hooks joining to make a little hinge so that when you move one of the wings the opposite moves likewise. Simple yet effective.
The backpack also features a little lock that allows you to lock the wings down or allow them to be put in even more positions. Just pull down on the little vent or whatever that thing is at the bottom.
And the wings are now free.
Sure this is meant to accommodate the way the wings are positioned for the transformation but it can be used outside of that as well. Speaking of this kit’s transformation, let’s have a look at that now.
Rotate the entire bottom half and the head of the Proto 180 degrees.
While you do this also fold up the little fins found on the underside of the shoulders.
Then pull the shoulders out and down (this method is found on both the Wing and Ver Ka though the actual design of the shoulder is different.)
Open up the hatches/rear armor at the bottom of each leg and spin the feet 180 degree. (Yup those feet have now moved 360 degrees).
Bend the knees back and extend the joint at the knee.
Then bend the knee joint in the opposite direction so it looks like your Proto has severely dislocated his leg at the knee. This seems to be a constant design choice found in almost all transforming MGs that I have come across.
Spread the wings out.
Open them up and then pivot them at the base where they connect to the arm that connects to the backpack.
Change their angle to about 45 degrees.
Next take the shield and fold in the little arm that is used to connect it to the arm of the Proto when it is in the MS mode.
Open up the flap found on the underside of the shield.
Now these little tabs found on the underside of the shield are placed into the hollows of the backpack. And you thought those were just cosmetic.
The fit is very simple yet secure.
Now fold the cover over the head of the Proto to try to hide the fact it’s a giant robot.
You can also fold out the small wing hidden under the underside of the larger wings.
The last step is to attach the rifles by pulling out the little connection tab and plugging them into the holes on the shield.
And there you go.
Once transformed this thing looks and feels massive.
Is this transformation any more elaborate, or simple, than that of the other transforming Wing kits?
The Wing Gundam transformation is a little simpler, though did have a couple tough areas. In the end, it works just as well.
The Ver Ka transformation is perhaps more complex than the other two including the extra weapons/parts you’ve got to connect. It’s worth noting that once transformed the Ver Ka seems just as big or even bigger than the Proto.
And the Zero? Well, umm. There’s not really any transformation but the design of the legs is similar to the other three MG Wing kits even though he’s not really changing into anything.
When it comes to reviewing any MG Wing no evaluation is complete without talking about the wings themselves. I’ve already written about the Proto’s wings so now let’s look at the others. First up, the Wing Gundam.
It takes a not insignificant number of parts to build these wings and yet they function very well.
You can see they open up to a fair degree but be careful because I found closing them to be difficult if one small part somewhere inside is at the wrong angle.
The Zero deserves special recognition for its wings.
Through a combination of pivot points and arms the upper part of each wing can expand.
The softer plastic they use for the individual feathers does give it the wing look but those can come off easily. The good news it that they can be put back on just as easily. These wings are cool.
You don’t have to worry about parts of the wings of the Ver Ka falling off but that’s because these wings don’t really do much. I like how they look but they lack the design complexity of the wings found on the other three.
But don’t worry, the Ver Ka does have parts that will fall off… all the time…
You’ll be seeing this a lot.
With all that said we can break it down like this:
Build Design score for the Wing Gundam is 9, while the Zero gets a 10, and the Ver Ka an 8.
Fun Factor: 9/10
While the Proto is very similar to other Wing MG kits when it comes to the body where it stands out is the wings. Unlike any of the other Wing kits, it’s a great feeling to dive into an aspect of a build that you haven’t experienced before. Given the ability to transform this guy and also use weapons together or separately there’s a lot you can do with this kit once it’s done, adding to the enjoyment.
The first Master Grade kit from wing that I built was the Wing Gundam and I actually think it holds up well since then. In fact, while rebuilding it for this review I again experienced how fun that build is. I would give that a 9 as well.
The Zero is almost a Wing all its own thanks to its very unique Wing design. What other kit compares to the Zero? So, of course, it goes without saying that if you’re a Wing Gundam fan you’ll get a lot of enjoyment out of that MG. A 9 for you as well, sir.
I didn’t enjoy the Ver Ka as much as the other kits but that’s mostly down to the when of the build on my part. The first kit released was the Ver Ka and had I built it then it would have been my first exposure to a transforming Wing kit and that would have helped the enjoyment with the build. As it is, I built the rereleased EW version after building both the Wing Gundam and the Zero. The Ver Ka/EW rerelease is just a victim of bad timing here. Still, I think it deserves an 8.
Yup, you get plenty of markings, the standard pilot figure and extra hand parts, for better or for worse, but where this kit earns its top marks is the inclusion of not only a stand but the parts to make use of it. Sure you get an adaptor if you want to use an action base but the supplied parts can be used for kit in both its MS and Flight modes.
For the MS you just put these parts together and then slip it onto the stand.
The grooves on the adapter fit into the grooves on the back of the backpack the same way those on the underside of the shield do when you’re transforming it.
It is sturdy and secure, though that may change over time.
For its flight mode you build a different adapter.
This has a little tab that fits into a small opening on the back skirt.
It cradles the lower torso and holds the Proto in place very well.
The Wing Gundam gets extra hands part and markings but no stand which is really disappointing considering your building a kit that is meant to transform into a fight mode. For that I would have to give the Wing a score of only 6. It really needs a stand if nothing else.
The Zero comes with a stand which drives the point home that the Wing Gundam is really lacking without one. And, of course, plenty of markings. 8 seems like a good number.
And the Ver Ka comes with nothing but to be fair Bandai at least undid some of the damage by including new stand adapter parts with the later EW release.
And a score of 7. Why Bandai didn’t include a stand with the later EW baffles me. C’mon, Bandai. I’m building a Wing here.
The Wing Gundam Proto is a fantastic kit and will likely be the favorite out of all the Wing MGs though I see the case for defense of the Zero. It definitely isn’t lacking compared to the others and outscored the others more often than not. Fans had been clamouring for this kit for some time and now that it is here I can gladly report that it doesn’t disappoint. As for the other Wing MGs, if you’ve been scoring at home the breakdown goes like this:
MG Wing Gundam 84.3%
MG Wing Gundam Zero Endless Waltz Ver 85.7%
MG Wing Gundam Ver. Ka/EW 80.0%
Phew. I need a vacation after that one.