57th All Japan Model & Hobby Show

October 2, 2017 at 21:48 | Posted in Events | Leave a comment
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So I was back in Tokyo for the All Japan Model & Hobby Show at Tokyo Big Sight. At the Bandai booth, the only big reveal was the PG Exia, slated for a December 2017 release. It has plenty of LEDs, but not as gimmicky as the PG Unicorn. Other than that, most of the new things were P-Bandai.

There’s the HG Zaku Cannon test type, which is almost identical to the standard Zaku Cannon except for the lower legs. And MG ZZ ver.Ka will be getting some expansion pack.

Some new Little Armory kits were also revealed, including a M2 Browning, the WW2 grease gun and a shooting range. Some of the new releases are variations of existing kits, like the M134, Kriss-Vector & M24 sniper rifle.

But if there’s a winner at this show, it’s most likely Kotobukiya. They have a nicer looking display booth, which included a 10:1 scale of Gourai Frame Arms Girl. The new Hexa gear series also looks quite interesting.

Like previous years, there’s the Junk city section where some spare Gunpla parts are sold. But unfortunately this year, most of the stuff was actually junk to me.

I did manage to get some waterslide decals from the Hasegawa section. Other booths were not that interesting, but there was a Frame Arms Girl bus. Not operational of course, but knowing Japan, I wouldn’t be surprised if I see it on the road.

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Little Armory M202A1

September 8, 2017 at 01:20 | Posted in Little Armory | 3 Comments
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Little Armory M202 Flash Rocket Launcher

The M202 rocket launcher was arguably made iconic by John Matrix in the movie Commando. This is the second Little Armory rocket launcher kit after the AT4. The plastic comes in olive drab and light brown. Also included is a strap, a rocket and some stickers.

I painted the green parts with my own mix of dark green paint, and the extended rocket barrels with copper. As usual, I opted to use my own waterslide decals instead of the included stickers.

There’s two types of configurations to choose from: the compact version, and the extended, ready-to-shoot configuration. You change between the two by swapping parts. Fully extended, the M202 is just a bit longer than the AT4.

Detail shots:

And with the skeleton & GM:

Final thoughts:

The M202 is essentially a square tube that shoots rockets. Design-wise it’s not the most pretty thing you’ll ever see but it does have its own unique looks.

As for the kit itself, I’d put it in the lower tier of all the Little Armory kits I’ve built. For one, the barrels are not hollowed out, making them look invariably toyish. Some of the swapable parts like the front & back covers didn’t fit too well either.

There’s not many poses I can make with the M202 other than the shoulder mounted, shooting pose. Even that pose was a bit difficult to setup on Mr Skeleton. The GM was slightly more forgiving. Speaking of which, the M202 seems like a nice match for the Ground Type GM.

So overall, I feel the M202 somewhat disappoints in terms of build quality and playability.

Little Armory RPK

August 11, 2017 at 10:41 | Posted in Little Armory | Leave a comment
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Little Armory RPK Light Machinegun

The RPK is a Russian version of the light machine gun. It looks very similar to the AKM, save for the longer barrel.

The kit comes with two box magazines and two drum magazines. There’s two types of buttstocks to choose from and two detachable bipods (folded and extended).

The plactic is molded in two colors: black and orange-brown. I didn’t paint the orange-brown parts; instead I brushed enamel dark brown paint randomly on them to recreate the wood lines effect. Then I dabbed black weathering pastel on them. The black parts were painted with steel paint.

As mentioned earlier, the RPK sports a longer barrel compared to the AKM, but overall it’s much shorter than the M240 machine guns.

Here’s some closeup shots:

And some poses:

Final thoughts:
While the RPK looks good in the hands of Mr Skeleton, it looks a bit small on the HGUC kits. It just doesn’t convey that sense of heftiness other machine guns have.
On the bright side, it comes with several spare magazines and they’re interchangeable with the AKM kit. With that, I leave you with the boxart pose:

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