We are having a bit of an MG drought in the Gunpla landscape these days and normally that would make me a sad camper but I’ve got some RG kits to work on to keep me satiated. Bandai hasn’t stopped producing plamo though, especially with the new season of Gundam Build Fighters starting, and the HGBF Build Burning Gundam intrigued me enough to pause my 1/144 RG enjoyment and tackle this much simpler kit. And I’m glad I did.
Note: For many of the pictures in this review I’ve used the ‘enhance’ option in the iPhoto editing software to make the Build Burning Gundam’s flames look even flamier. Is that a word?
Overall Look: 10/10
There is some debate on what the Build Burning Gundam is based off of. I’m going to say it looks like an Impulse, specifically the Sword Impulse and that makes me love it. It’s simple, sleek, and not overdone but don’t let that fool you. It has some surprises it is ready to bust out. While it may look rather bland from a distance, looking closer will allow you to see some nice details particularly in the hands.
That’s right! You can change the blue effect parts to orange!
In a way, you’re kind of getting two colour schemes here. I prefer the orange myself. The red is very much like that found on the Sword Impulse which is another thing BBG has going for him.
Weapons: ?/10 (but in all seriousness I will give it a 7/10)
BBG doesn’t come with a rifle or a bazooka. Nor does it have Gundam staples like beam sabres or a shield. Instead, Build Burning Gundam only has his hands to fight with. And I think those are more than enough. In fact, Bandai gives you plenty and there’s a lot you can do with them.
I’ll talk more about what makes these great later on in the review.
This kit is quite flexible, especially down below and that is thanks to a great knee design.
In fact, the only thing that inhibits movement of the leg is the ankle. When you flex to a certain point the armour of the lower leg starts to separate.
I think the only place where movement is limited is in the shoulder area. His arm won’t go up past this point.
I can live with that. And he does pass the balance test quite easily.
But while movement upwards is limited movement of the shoulders forward is much better than in HG kits released before this one. That is thanks to how the torso is designed so let’s talk about what makes the Build Burning Gundam great in this next section.
Build Design: 9/10
Let’s start with the shoulders. As I mentioned the shoulders are able to move forwards quite a bit thanks to a new torso design. Rather than having one poly-cap that sits inside the side of the torso, Bandai has the sides of the torso built to move separately from the main portion of the chest.
Here are those shoulders. A poly-cap is actually inserted in here attaching to a ball joint. Then you snap the hinge into place.
This allows the sides of the torso to move out anchored near the front.
While you could move the shoulders of previous Gundams forward it mean that there would be a visible gap between the torso and shoulder. That gap never appears here. There is a bit of drawback to this design though it is minor. Occasionally the whole poly-cap comes off that ball joint because there is nothing locking it down.
The wrists have more flexibility than in HG’s past thanks to a very MG-like design. The hands and wrist peg are different parts.
This means the hands pivot rather than having much more limited movement.
And the lower torso is actually comprised of a rounded parts that move independently of the larger main torso assembly.
Now for the cool factor. BBG in his basic form has the blue effect parts on.
But once he gets heated up the blue turns to orange. Of course, the parts don’t actually change colour. You have to swap them. But that is really easy.
It’s not hard at all to pull of the effect parts you won’t be using (though BBG looks a little naked without any at all.)
The knees and elbows have one armour part that comes off and the effect part fits inside.
However, this design for the elbow does mean that the armour part will fall off occasionally.
By occasionally I mean every. single. time! The parts are so small that at first you don’t realise they have come off. You only notice when you look at the elbow. Then you look on the floor, find the part, put it back on and proceed to play with the kit and, pop, off the piece will come again. It’s happened so frequently that those pieces are now inside the plastic bag where I keep the BBG parts I’m not currently playing with. It could happen to you too.
Another thing that pops off for me is one of the legs.
Though I suspect this is more an issue of me not pushing it in properly or making some other similar mistake.
Other than those minor gripes what I really want to convey is how fun this kit is.
Fun Factor: 10/10
Fire! That’s what Build Burning Gundam brings and Bandai gives you lots of it in the form of effect parts that are meant to be used in various forms on his back, feet, and legs.
The part for the foot actually sandwiches around the foot and won’t come off despite being a little heavy, though I do suggest to put it all together with the foot removed from the kit.
You have three different choices of fire extensions, for lack of a better word, that can be used on the foot and hand effect part. I went with the long ones for the foot.
The parts on the back can loop upwards.
With the provided adaptors, however, you can change the angle so they shoot backwards instead of upwards.
Those flames for the back are actually comprised of three parts that can rotate to give the flames different shapes.
It’s a good effect.
The part for the hand just slides right on.
There is a lot you can do here, and that’s where the majority of the fun is to be found with this kit.
Look at all those parts! Two of everything, except for the parts which have four of everything! In contrast, the Build Burning Gundam is relatively sticker less.
And that’s the way I prefer it.
Bandai does provide all the parts needed to make four pairs of hands so you won’t have to do any hand part swapping at all.
It’s definitely not one of the more complex HG kits out there but what Bandai does provide makes it one of the better ones. I just love this guy.
So much so that I had to put him on a stand. How did I do?