RG 1/144 GN-001 Gundam Exia (RG) Review


Currently one of my favorite RG builds this year


Kimi here, and am back again this week with my review of the RG 1/144 GN-001 Gundam Exia! In which to those that has been following me the progress of the kit, you may have known some of my thoughts and feelings about the kit and yes I did had a blast with it. Today will be the day that I will give my full opinion on the kit both the bad bits and as well the good bits so you will be able to decide if this is the one RG kit for you.

But before we get to that, let us first get into the lore of this awesome MS that this kit was based upon, so without further ado! Let’s get on to it shall we?

The History and development of the GN-001 Gundam Exia

Model name                        : GN-001

Classification                     : Close Quarters Combat Suit

Weapon systems               : GN Beam Sabers, GN Beam Daggers, GN Long Blade & GN                                                            Short Blade, GN Shield, GN Sword, GN Vulcans

Height                                  : 18.3m

Armour Material              : E-Carbon

Powerplant                        : GN-Drive

Crew                                     : 1

As interesting it is to have built the Exia in the gunpla form, the MS itself as well had a pretty interesting development and history to its name. For starters, did you know even though it was given the designation of the GN-001 it wasn’t the first MS that was developed by the Celestial Being? The Exia was actually a third generation MS that was developed and manufactured by the Celestial Being.

Developed and manufactured at Krung Thep one of the isolated space colonies in Lagrange Point 3 that was operated by the Celestial Being, the Exia was developed to be a true fully capable Close Quarters Combat MS. To achieve this they designed the Exia joints that would have the same range of movements as a human being. Hence the Exia had a much more Human-like movement to give it an unrivaled movement and mobility in combat,. The Gundam Exia was primarily be equipped with heavy melee physical weapons and a lot of close range and medium range beam weaponry.  Finally, the Exia as well was given a lighter, a much more segmented and as well as smaller armor bits for better mobility.

The Exia right after the battle at Ceylon

At this point, you may start thinking to yourself “a lighter armor for a primarily CQC capable MS? ” “Isn’t CQC capable MS usually would be equipped with heavier armor to help better protect the pilot and as well to increase to the survivability rate of the MS’s.

Yes, although I do agree to that particular theory and it was quite true for most CQC based MS’s that we’ve seen throughout the years. But Celestial Being kind of has their own ideas of how their CQC only MS’S should be by using what knowledge and the technology that they had at their disposal. Plus with them developing not just one Gundam type and them creating battle strategies that would see all the Gundams variants working in tandem with each other during every operation that VEDA sees fit, it kind of made sense on why the Exia was made to be as such. For whatever armed intervention they had in mind, they needed the Exia to be as mobile and as effective as it can be.

Though they didn’t just stop at just designing the Exia to just have human-like joints, no no no. They as well designed a head unit that looked exactly very human-like as well. The design of the Head unit was modeled to look like the previous and the current Gundam pilots helmet, this was done to cement the belief of the meisters being the Gundam (that kind of explains Setsuna’s crazy battle cry). The Celestial being third Generation MS’s like the Exia as well possess head antennas that are able to control the GN particle distribution. Though if we were, to be honest, most of the actual particle control responsibility is taken up by the antennas at Exia’s shoulders and neck. The head unit as well houses standard communication and sensor devices, but it as well housed a black box device that was used not to just record and monitor the movements of Exia’s pilot but it was as well used to help the Exia to consistently to be linked by VEDA at all times.

The Exia in action during their first intervention

The GN Cables (A.K.A GN Power lines) is one of Gundam Exia most prominent feature yet, especially to those that are sticking out from the shoulder armor unit to the arm unit of the Exia. What do the cables do you may be wondering? Well, my friends as its namesake the main feature is to transport and distribute power across the MS. Though there is one thing that I and I’m sure most of you maybe wondering, why is it that only the Exia had these cables sticking out like that?

Well apparently, there is a reason for this, remember when we talked about the Exia having human-like movements? Somehow rather, the Engineers that was working on the Exia at the time found out that by having these cables out and expose like that somewhat helped the Exia to achieve that finer movement and mobility that they have been trying to achieve. Even though they were quite aware of the dangers of having the GN Cables exposed like that, the level of movement and mobility that the Exia is able to achieve by doing that kind of justifies their action.

Though it doesn’t change the fact that it was a nonsensical move and dangerous too.

Regardless, with the advancement of the technology they did eventually manage to fix (or in this case improve) the issue with the Exia repair 2, with it having all the GN cables stored internally instead of having them exposed as they did with the Original iteration. Though even in its original form it was said that the total energy output of the Exia was extremely powerful when compared to most suits at the time. So much so that one of Union’s top engineer, Billy Katagiri estimated that the Exia had approximately six times of the output of a Flag. He based that conclusion by solely analyzing the impact damage that was incurred by Graham Aker’s mobile suit after his first encounter with the Exia.

The Exia seen here beating the living shit out of them poor Tierens

Even though that the Exia was designed primarily to combat only enemy suits or a non-GN Drive capable MS’s there is another darker reason as to why the Exia was designed to still carry Heavy Physical-based melee weaponry instead of completely relying on the superior beam-based weaponry. Well, that is because the Exia is as well intended to deal with any traitor units that may or may not be using the GN Field tech. Since they realized that any beam-based weaponry would be proven to be useless against a GN Field. Hence, why the Exia was still given a physical melee weapon, as they would not be affected by the GN Fields.

This role was originally was shared in between the Exia and the Virtue Physical but after VEDA found that Virtue Particle would be a much more useful for what future conflict interventions (at the time) that they might have in mind hence the task fall solely into Exia’s hand. This as well causes the Exia’s pilot to shoulder a much higher level of responsibility as compared to other Gundam Meisters.

The Exia in its trans-am mode

In addition, the Exia as well was equipped with a “GN Drive Burst Mode” feature where it would be able to grant the Exia a temporary boost of power and as well improves upon the capabilities of the suit. However this was hardly used since it was found to be quite an unstable system, but eventually after the assassination of Aeolia Schenberg Exia and the other Gundam Variants was granted the use of the Trans-Am system which was a much more stable and better system throughout when compared to the GN Burst mode.

With that ends the history lesson, and now let us get on to the Review, shall we?

The Review


I wanted to start off the review a bit differently this week by first talking about… well some of my frustrations with the RG Exia…

I do want to start this off by acknowledging to all of you here that the RG Exia so far is probably one of the hardest and one of the most challenging kits that I’ve actually have had built EVER. I was at times finding myself getting mad, frustrated, baffled and as well almost giving up at the level of challenge that was presented in front of me when I worked on the kit.

So Hard in fact that it made me re-think if the RG Tallgeese should even be categorized as an RG kit since the RG Tallgeese was SO MUCH MORE EASIER ON THE HANDS when compared to the INSANELY HARD ON THE HANDS RG Exia.

Why did I find the kit to be hard you may be wondering? Oh, there are many reasons for this, for one, it had a lot of small parts when I say small, I mean almost microscopic level of parts. Oh yes, you can imagine how much of a trouble I had with them and it was made worse with me being a total klutz. Shit, I found myself spending my time looking for them tiny parts more than I did building the RG Exia itself.

Started off well with a good looking inner frame
Which ended up looking quite sexy when completed!

Secondly…that damned shoulder part, Goddamn I really struggled a lot with the Exia’s shoulder section. So much so that during the process of attaching them to the Exia, I managed to break one of the body fins up. Even though I did manage to glue it up and make it look like nothing major had happened to it, but it sucks for me to know that fin is fixed there…PERMANENTLY. Though I do understand why they decided to design the Exia’s joints the way they did, but they could’ve just had us build the arm unit first and make us include the shoulder bits together and only then include it when building the body unit. That I feel would’ve definitely spare me the pain of breaking that beautiful yellow fin.

Finally, we get to the most annoying and at the same time one of the hardest parts of the RG Exia, the GN Cables. YES, that’s right the Exia’s GN cables is probably one of the hardest pieces here that I had the pleasure of dealing with. Though to be honest, I didn’t start feeling annoyed by it, in fact, I was really looking forward to the time that I would be spending with the GN Cables. Well, that is up until I started working on them.

Why wouldn’t I be annoyed by them? The parts were a pain to put on, and when I did manage to, it didn’t stay still long enough without having to reposition the darn thing again. As well to make it even worse, it looked nothing like what I see in some of the reference pictures on the manuals. I’ve spent my whole waking moment trying to figure out if I did anything wrong with the build or is there anything from the building processes that I missed or if the part that was included in the kit was faulty.

Same with the body, started off looking good..
to sexy af, dang you look good

Funnily it turns out that I’m not the only one that was facing this issue, apparently. There was quite a few here that I’ve talked to that is as well facing this same annoying issue. Which as well made me quite thankful, because I really honestly thought I fucked it up. I even went as far to try to apply some glue to it, and even then, it doesn’t work…what’s more the glue that I applied somewhat ruined the awesome silver sticker that was underneath the GN Cables.

Shit, right after I heard what a lot of the other builders had to go through trying to fix that issue. I was really thinking to myself, what’s the point of dwelling here too long. I should just give in and move on to the rest.

But in all honestly, though, having to work on them fiddly cables really was the worse for me, because it really manages to break my spirit. I find myself broken after having tried everything and still failed to make things work…..but despite having to go through all of that, I can’t find myself to hate it.

You may think that is a weird thing to say after starting off the review by rambling about all the things that I was frustrated about with the RG Exia.

Yes, I was frustrated with some of the things that Bandai did for the RG Exia but at the same time, I love everything about it. So now I will talk about some good things about the Exia.

I did break something during this process, but at the same time, I can’t deny it was satisfying to see how good it is slowly becoming.

Really, despite all the frustrations I went through with this kit, I can’t deny that it was still quite a fun kit to build. The challenges that were presented, though riddled with frustrations as worked through it, but I found that it was mostly because I was going through it for the first time and to be frank, I wasn’t prepared for the level of hardship that I had to face when I decided to work on this. I thought that it would be a breeze, like the two previous RG’s that I worked on, like the RG Unicorn and the RG Tallgeese.

but it wasn’t anything like the two of them. It was different, this kit is definitely a lot harder when compared to the other two and, to be honest, its good to again build something that forces you to consistently be at your best all the time

Even though I said previously have said that I have had my spirit broken by how flimsy and how stubborn as fuck the GN Cables are, but as I decided to not fight it up and just give in instead, I realized that towards the end of the build that was the correct decision. Because you will find that all the loose GN Cables you struggled with at first doesn’t look that bad and all that armor that you install kind of help to keep them in check. It made me wonder, why the hell I was worrying so much for.

I love the details seen here, its nothing much but I like how it looked
Probably one of the best looking weapon sets that I’ve seen on any RG kits

I really should’ve just give in from the start and just let the process takes over, instead of trying to fight it all the time.

What’s more, even though it had a lot of microscopic parts, but everything here works and none of the small parts used here feels flimsy. Really, everything here fits well and I can really honestly say that this is one of the two RG kits that I’ve built to be really fucking solid. I as well mentioned that the Exia as well had joints that were a bitch to put in together but goddamn the articulation of the kit is really impressive. It would just do anything you ask it to do and it would be able to do it with no problems. As well during the posing process, I thought that the GN Cables might get in a way of the kit, but funnily enough, the cables weren’t hampering with the poses at all, in fact, it behaved themselves quite well.

All in all I really found myself to have learned something not just useful in my journey to become a better gunpla builder but at the same time, it kind of helped me to learn something that I needed to learn as a human being that sometimes it is really best to just give in and let the process (or life) takes you somewhere. All I really needed to do it’s just to enjoy the process of it happening.

Handsome boi in the light
Handsome boi in the dark

Damn, that is deep. I never have imagined that building gunplas would be this deep.

Anyways, overall, I would say that even though this kit is really one that I find it to be quite a challenging one to work on but it is one of the best RG kits out there. Really one that I would definitely recommend to those that are looking for a challenge and to those that seek to test their building skills (and patience) on. This is really not something that I would recommend a total beginner to try out, especially if you are still learning the ropes and still haven’t built the patience to work on the same problem for hours. Because this is really one of those kits that you need to study it and work on it slowly. Unlike most, because this is one that would punish you if you decided to rush on it. As I have discovered.

One of my fav poses of the RG Exia
but dang you can really do anything and the RG Exia just still manages to look cool

Oh yeah, with all the small tiny bits, this is definitely not a kid-friendly kit.

Honestly, this is probably one of the best RG kits that I’ve built this year and definitely, the one that I a lot of fun with and at the same time made me reflect upon myself to be both a better human being and as well to become a better Gunpla builder.

Oh wait I can see China from here, dang I think I went too deep.

With that ends the review for the RG 1/144 GN-001 Gundam Exia! Dang, as soon as I’m done with the RG Exia I was already looking forward to getting to work on the next RG kit that I had in store…the RG Sazabi. With the kind of good press that I been hearing, I am really looking forward to experiencing what the RG Sazabi had in store for me and honestly? I really hope that it would be as good or better than the RG Exia!

At the same time, I hoped that it would be as challenging too…

Anyways, we will be back again this week more Let’s Talk Gunpla Segment on the coming Wednesday and we will be back as well on the coming Sunday with the unboxing and First impressions on…. I may say one of the most highly rated…HG kits this year. What HG kit that I am talking about? Well, you’ll find out on the next upcoming Sunday and I’m sure you would enjoy the next unboxing for sure!

As ever please do leave us a like if you enjoyed this article and oh do follow us here on the blog or on FB or on Instagram if you enjoy this kind of content from us! As well do feel free to give us some feedback and comment if you think there are areas in the post that we can work on so to further improve our posts in the future! As well your comment and feedback will ensure that we would be able to give you all here a much-improved content in the future! As well, we want you to know that your likes and shares would be highly appreciated in supporting and helping us grow further, honestly, your love and support means the world to all of us here in Kimi the Builder Blog editorial team.

We hope by sharing our love and passion for gunplas here, it’ll inspire you to pick up the hobby or reignite your love for gunpla!

Anyways, we shall see all of you again next week, and we hope that you all have an awesome week and weekend ahead! Have an awesome Gunpla building time there as well and until next time!


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