As a die-hard Gundam fan or an avid Gunpla collector, you’ve probably heard of the Perfect Grade (PG) Gundam line. If you’re new to the world of Gundam and Gunpla, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. This comprehensive guide will take you through the fascinating world of Perfect Grade Gundam, exploring its history, features, and unique characteristics that set it apart from other Gunpla lines.
From the first-ever Perfect Grade model released in 1998 to the latest PG Unleashed series, we’ll delve deep into the details, step by step. Along the way, we’ll share real-life examples and stories to keep you engaged and excited.
A Brief History of Perfect Grade Gundam
To truly appreciate the brilliance of Perfect Grade Gundam models, it’s essential to understand their origins. Let’s take a quick trip down memory lane.
Gundam, the hugely popular mecha anime series, first aired in 1979. It was an instant hit, and the love for the franchise has only grown since. As Gundam gained popularity, so did the demand for merchandise, particularly Gunpla (short for Gundam Plastic Model Kits). Bandai, the manufacturer behind these kits, introduced several Gunpla lines over the years, with varying levels of detail, difficulty, and complexity.
It wasn’t until 1998 that the first Perfect Grade Gundam model was released, which took the Gunpla world by storm. This was the PG RX-78-2 Gundam, the protagonist mobile suit from the original 1979 anime. The PG line was created to cater to serious collectors and enthusiasts who wanted the ultimate Gunpla experience, with unparalleled detail, complexity, and articulation.
What Sets Perfect Grade Gundam Apart?
The Perfect Grade Gundam line is unique for several reasons:
- Size: PG Gundam kits are typically 1/60 scale, making them much larger than their High Grade (1/144) and Master Grade (1/100) counterparts. This allows for more intricate details and better articulation.
- Detail: The level of detail in Perfect Grade kits is astonishing. From panel lines to decals, every aspect of the design is meticulously crafted. These kits often include intricate internal structures, like fully-functional cockpits and skeletal frames.
- Complexity: With hundreds, sometimes thousands, of parts, PG Gundam kits are the most complex of all Gunpla lines. They often feature advanced engineering, such as metal parts, LEDs, and even motorized components.
- Articulation: Thanks to their size and complexity, PG Gundam models offer unparalleled articulation, allowing for dynamic and realistic poses.
In the Perfect Grade Gundam category, there are several key decision-making factors that influence a buyer’s choice. Understanding these factors can help you make an informed decision when purchasing a PG Gundam kit. Here, we’ll identify these factors and discuss how Perfect Grade Gundam models generally perform in those areas.
1. Detail and Realism
One of the main reasons collectors opt for Perfect Grade Gundam kits is the unparalleled level of detail and realism. These kits offer intricate panel lines, decals, and internal structures that closely resemble their anime counterparts.
Performance: PG Gundam models excel in this area, providing stunning detail that sets them apart from other Gunpla lines. The larger scale (1/60) allows for more intricate designs and a higher level of realism.
2. Complexity and Challenge
Another key factor for builders is the complexity and challenge associated with assembling a PG Gundam kit. These models are often sought after by experienced builders who want to push their skills to the limit.
Performance: Perfect Grade Gundam kits are highly complex, with hundreds or even thousands of parts. They often feature advanced engineering, such as metal components, LED lights, and even motorized elements. Consequently, they provide a challenging and rewarding building experience.
3. Articulation and Poseability
The ability to pose and display a Gundam model in dynamic positions is essential for many collectors. High-quality articulation allows for a wide range of motion and more realistic, eye-catching poses.
Performance: Thanks to their size, complexity, and advanced engineering, Perfect Grade Gundam models boast exceptional articulation. Joints are typically well-designed and sturdy, providing smooth movement and stability in various poses.
4. Customization Potential
Many Gunpla builders enjoy customizing their models with paint, decals, or weathering effects. The potential for customization is a significant factor in choosing a kit.
Performance: Perfect Grade Gundam kits offer excellent customization potential due to their large size and intricate detail. The kits’ complexity allows for more opportunities to add personal touches, such as custom paint schemes or additional decals.
As with any purchase, the price is a crucial factor to consider. Perfect Grade Gundam kits tend to be more expensive than other Gunpla lines due to their size, complexity, and advanced features.
Performance: While Perfect Grade Gundam kits are often more expensive than High Grade or Master Grade models, the price is generally justified by the level of detail, complexity, and overall quality. For serious collectors and enthusiasts, the investment is often considered worthwhile.
The availability of a specific PG Gundam kit may influence the decision-making process. Some kits are more difficult to find or may be out of production, making them harder to acquire.
Performance: The availability of Perfect Grade Gundam kits can vary. While some popular models are widely available, others may be harder to find, especially older or limited edition kits. It’s essential to research and be prepared to act quickly when a sought-after kit becomes available.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Perfect Grade Gundam
Now that we know what makes Perfect Grade Gundam kits unique, let’s dive into a step-by-step guide to building and enjoying these masterpieces.
Step 1: Choose Your Perfect Grade Gundam Kit
Selecting the right PG Gundam kit is crucial. With numerous options available, it’s essential to pick a model that fits your taste and skill level. Some popular Perfect Grade Gundam kits include:
- PG RX-78-2 Gundam (the first-ever PG kit)
- PG Zeta Gundam (a transforming mobile suit with intricate mechanisms)
- PG Astray Red Frame (a fan-favorite mobile suit with a unique design)
- PG Unicorn Gundam (a modern classic with LED lighting)
- PG RX-0[N] Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee Norn (a powerful variant of the Unicorn Gundam with a different color scheme)
- PG Unleashed RX-78-2 Gundam (the latest release, celebrating the PG line’s 20th anniversary)
Consider the mobile suit’s design, complexity, and any additional features like LED lights or transformation mechanisms when making your choice.
Here’s a table of essential equipment and optional tools to help you have the best experience when working with Perfect Grade Gundam kits:
|Plastic model nippers||For cutting parts from the runners||Recommended|
|Hobby knife||For trimming nub marks and cleaning up parts||Recommended|
|Fine grit sandpaper or sanding sticks||For smoothing out nub marks and surface imperfections||Recommended|
|Tweezers||For applying decals and handling small parts||Recommended|
|Panel lining markers or washes||For accentuating panel lines and adding depth to the model||Recommended|
|Gundam markers or paint||For customizing your kit with additional colors or details||Optional|
|Paintbrushes||For painting small details or applying weathering effects||Optional|
|Airbrush and compressor||For applying an even coat of paint for customization||Optional|
|Topcoat (matte or gloss)||For sealing and protecting your model’s paint and decals||Optional|
|Cotton swabs||For cleaning up panel lining or paint applications||Optional|
|Alligator clips and bamboo skewers||For holding parts while painting or airbrushing||Optional|
|Cutting mat||For protecting your work surface while cutting and trimming parts||Optional|
|Plastic cement or glue||For securing loose-fitting parts or custom modifications||Optional|
|Pin vise and small drill bits||For drilling holes for metal detailing or custom modifications||Optional|
|Weathering pastels or pigments||For creating realistic weathering effects on your model||Optional|
This table provides a comprehensive list of equipment to help you have a successful and enjoyable Perfect Grade Gundam building experience. While some tools are optional, they can greatly enhance the level of customization and detail you can achieve with your model.
Step 2: Gather Your Tools and Prepare Your Workspace
Building a Perfect Grade Gundam requires patience, skill, and the right tools. Before starting, make sure you have the following items:
- Plastic model nippers
- Hobby knife
- Fine grit sandpaper or sanding sticks
- Tweezers (for applying decals)
- Panel lining markers or washes
- Gundam markers or paint (optional, for customization)
Additionally, prepare a clean, well-lit workspace with ample room to work and store the parts.
Step 3: Familiarize Yourself with the Manual and Parts
Before diving into the build, take the time to study the manual and understand the parts layout. PG Gundam kits come with comprehensive manuals, usually in Japanese, but with clear diagrams and part numbers. Familiarizing yourself with the manual will help you avoid mistakes and make the building process smoother.
Step 4: Start Building
Begin building your Perfect Grade Gundam by following the manual’s step-by-step instructions. Remember to take your time and be patient. The complexity of these kits means that rushing through the build can lead to mistakes or damage to the parts.
Some tips for a successful build include:
- Use nippers to remove parts from the runners, cutting as close to the part as possible.
- Smooth out any nub marks with a hobby knife or sandpaper.
- Apply panel lining and decals as you go, rather than waiting until the end.
- Test the fit and movement of parts before fully assembling them.
Step 5: Customize Your Perfect Grade Gundam (Optional)
Many builders choose to customize their PG Gundam kits by painting, adding custom decals, or weathering the model. This step is entirely optional but can add a personal touch to your masterpiece. If you decide to customize your kit, be sure to research techniques and use high-quality materials for the best results.
Step 6: Display and Enjoy Your Perfect Grade Gundam
Once your Perfect Grade Gundam is complete, it’s time to display and enjoy your hard work. Find a prominent place to showcase your model, such as a display case or shelf. Ensure the area is protected from dust and direct sunlight to preserve your model’s colors and details.
Take pride in your accomplishment and don’t forget to share your build with fellow Gundam and Gunpla enthusiasts online or in local hobby groups.
List of Perfect Grade (PG) Gundam
|Year||Model Name||Gundam Name||Release Date||Series||Additional Information|
|1998||Perfect Grade RX-78-2 Gundam||RX-78-2 Gundam||November 1998||Mobile Suit Gundam|
|1999||Perfect Grade MS-06S Zaku II||MS-06F Zaku II||March 1999||Mobile Suit Gundam|
|1999||Perfect Grade MS-06S Char’s Zaku II||MS-06S Char’s Zaku II||July 1999||Mobile Suit Gundam|
|2000||Perfect Grade Zeta Gundam||Zeta Gundam||March 2000||Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam|
|2000||Perfect Grade W-Gundam Zero Custom||W-Gundam Zero Custom||November 2000||New Mobile Report Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz|
|2001||Perfect Grade Gundam Mk-II (A.E.U.G)||Gundam Mk-II (A.E.U.G)||November 2001||Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam|
|2002||Perfect Grade Gundam Mk-II Titans||Gundam Mk-II (Titans)||July 2002||Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam|
|2003||Perfect Grade Gundam GP01/Fb||Gundam GP01/Fb||November 2003||Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory|
|2004||Perfect Grade Strike Gundam||Strike Gundam||November 2004||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED|
|2005||Perfect Grade Skygrasper + Aile Striker||Skygrasper + Aile Striker||June 2005||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED|
|2005||Perfect Grade Strike Rouge + Skygrasper||Strike Rouge + Skygrasper||August 2005||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED|
|2007||Perfect Grade Wing Gundam Zero Custom (Pearl Mirror Coating Ver.)||Wing Gundam Zero Custom||June 2007||New Mobile Report Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz||Limited Edition|
|2009||Perfect Grade Gundam Astray (Red Frame)||Gundam Astray [Red Frame]||March 2009||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Astray|
|2009||Perfect Grade 00 Raiser||00 Raiser||November 2009||Mobile Suit Gundam 00|
|2010||Perfect Grade RX-78-2 Gundam 30th Anniversary Extra Finish||RX-78-2 Gundam (30th Anniversary Extra Finish Ver.)||March 2010||Mobile Suit Gundam||Limited Edition|
|2010||Perfect Grade MS-06F Zaku II 30th Anniversary Extra Finish Ver.||MS-04F Zaku II (30th Anniversary Extra Finish Ver.)||March 2010||Mobile Suit Gundam||Limited Edition|
|2010||Perfect Grade Strike Freedom Gundam||Strike Freedom Gundam||December 2010||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny|
|2014||Perfect Grade Unicorn Gundam||Unicorn Gundam||December 2014||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn|
|2015||Perfect Grade Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee Norn||Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee Norn||September 2015||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn|
|2016||Unicorn Gundam (Final Battle Ver.)||Unicorn Gundam||April 2006||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn||P-Bandai exclusive|
|2016||Unicorn Gundam (7-Eleven Color Ver.)||Unicorn Gundam||November 2006||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn||7-Eleven Japan exclusive metallic color variant|
|Year||Model Name||Gundam Name||Release Date||Series||Additional Information|
|2017||Unicorn Gundam 03 Phenex||Unicorn Gundam 03 Phenex||February 2017||Mobile Suit Gundam UC: One of the Seventy Two||P-Bandai exclusive|
|2017||Perfect Grade Gundam Exia Lighting Model||Gundam Exia [Lighting Model]||December 2017||Mobile Suit Gundam 00||Special Edition|
|2017||Perfect Grade Gundam Exia||Gundam Exia||December 2017||Mobile Suit Gundam 00||Released to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Gundam 00 and the 20th anniversary of the Perfect Grade line|
|2018||Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee Norn (Final Battle Ver.)||Unicorn Gundam 02 Banshee Norn||February 2018||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn||P-Bandai exclusive|
|2018||Perfect Grade Gundam Astray Red Frame Kai||Gundam Astray Red Frame Kai||June 2018||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Astray||Special Edition|
|2018||Perfect Grade 00 Gundam Seven Sword/G||00 Gundam Seven Sword/G||December 2018||Mobile Suit Gundam 00V: Battlefield Record||Released to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Gundam 00|
|2019||Unicorn Gundam + Armed Armor DE (China Red Ver.)||Unicorn Gundam + Armed Armor DE||August 2019||Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn – Bande Dessinee||Tmall.com exclusive color variant|
|2020||Perfect Grade Perfect Strike Gundam||Perfect Strike Gundam||February 2020||Mobile Suit Gundam SEED|
|2021||Unicorn Gundam 03 Phenex (Narrative Ver.)||Unicorn Gundam 03 Phenex||January 2021||Mobile Suit Gundam Narrative||P-Bandai exclusive|
As a passionate Gunpla enthusiast, I’ve found several resources helpful when researching and making decisions about Perfect Grade Gundam kits. I’d like to share three of my favorite resources with you, as they can provide invaluable insights and information to guide you in making an informed choice.
- Dalong.net – Dalong is a fantastic resource for detailed reviews of Gunpla kits, including Perfect Grade models. The site features in-depth photo reviews, which showcase each kit’s parts, building process, and completed model. I particularly appreciate the side-by-side comparisons of different kits, which can help you understand the size and detail differences among various models. Although the site is primarily in Korean, you can use an online translator or simply browse the images to get a better understanding of each kit.
- Gundam.Info – Gundam.Info is the official Gundam portal site, featuring news, videos, and articles related to the Gundam franchise. I find this site particularly useful for staying up-to-date with the latest Perfect Grade releases and announcements. The site also features interviews with creators and designers, which can provide unique insights into the development process of these intricate kits.
- /r/Gunpla – The Gunpla subreddit is an excellent community of builders and collectors who share their experiences, tips, and advice about all things Gunpla. I often browse /r/Gunpla for inspiration, as members post photos of their completed Perfect Grade Gundam builds, often showcasing customization and weathering techniques. The community is also a great source of information for finding deals, limited edition releases, and troubleshooting any issues you may encounter during the building process.
In my opinion, these resources are incredibly helpful for anyone interested in Perfect Grade Gundam kits. They offer a wealth of information and inspiration, helping you make an informed decision and get the most out of your Gunpla building experience.
Building a Perfect Grade (PG) Gundam is a rewarding and challenging experience. These kits represent the pinnacle of Gunpla engineering, offering the most detailed, complex, and articulated models in the hobby.
What is a Perfect Grade Gundam?
Perfect Grade (PG) Gundam is a line of premium 1/60 scale Gunpla (Gundam plastic model) kits. They are known for their incredible detail, complexity, and articulation, offering the most advanced and challenging building experience among Gunpla categories.
How difficult is it to build a Perfect Grade Gundam?
Building a Perfect Grade Gundam can be quite challenging, especially for beginners. These kits have a high number of parts and often include advanced features such as metal components, LED lights, and motorized elements. As a result, they require patience, skill, and proper tools. Experienced builders typically find PG kits more enjoyable due to their complexity.
How long does it take to build a Perfect Grade Gundam?
The time it takes to build a Perfect Grade Gundam varies depending on the specific kit and the builder’s experience. On average, it can take anywhere from 20 to 60 hours or more to complete a PG kit. The building process can be extended further if you choose to customize your model with painting, decaling, or weathering.
Are Perfect Grade Gundam kits expensive?
Perfect Grade Gundam kits tend to be more expensive than other Gunpla lines due to their size, complexity, and advanced features. Prices can range from $100 to over $300, depending on the specific kit and its availability. Collectors and enthusiasts often consider the investment worthwhile for the high level of detail and quality provided by PG kits.
Can I customize my Perfect Grade Gundam?
Yes, you can customize your Perfect Grade Gundam with paint, decals, weathering, or other modifications. The larger scale and intricate detail of PG kits offer excellent customization potential. However, customization is entirely optional, and many builders choose to build their PG kits “out of the box” without additional modifications.
Are there any limited edition Perfect Grade Gundam kits?
Yes, there are limited edition PG kits, often featuring unique color schemes, additional accessories, or other special features. These kits are typically produced in smaller quantities and can be more challenging to find, making them highly sought after by collectors.
How can I find the best Perfect Grade Gundam kit for me?
The best PG kit for you depends on your preferences, skill level, and budget. Consider factors such as the mobile suit’s design, complexity, additional features, and price when making your decision. Researching reviews, engaging with the Gunpla community, and utilizing resources such as Dalong.net, Gundam.Info, and /r/Gunpla can help you make an informed choice.
Hey there! I’m Richard Baker, a miniature painter who’s been in the game for a solid decade now. I’ve been painting miniatures for ten years and I’ve got a ton of tips and tricks to share with you all. My website is a treasure trove of knowledge that I’ve gathered from both my own personal experiences and from reading all sorts of books.