The best old HGUC kit that I have built to date!
I have built a lot of HGUC kits ever since I picked up on the Gunpla building hobby, but shamefully I would admit here and now that I have never worked on any of the HGUC Rick Dom variants. But then I decided to change all of that and pick this one up since I’m a War in a Pocket OVA fan.
Coming in, knowing that this is an old HGUC kit, I didn’t have a high expectation of it. However, as soon as I started working on it,
I find myself to be quite surprised by what I experienced here.
But before we get to the meat of the review, let us first get into the lore and history of this badass MS first, shall we?
The Development and history of the MS-09R-2 Rick Dom II
- Model Name: MS-09R-2
- Classification: Mass Production Space Combat Mobile Suit
- Weapon systems: 1 x Scattering Beam Gun, 1 x Heat Saber, 1 x 360mm Giant Bazooka II, 1 x MMP-80 90mm Machine Gun, Sturm Faust, 1 x H&L-GB05R/360mm Giant Bazooka, 1x 880mmRB-T27 Rakaten Bazooka, 1 x Large Beam Saber
- Height: 18.6 m
- Armour Material: Titanium Alloy Ceramic Composite
- Powerplant: Minovsky Ultracompact Fusion Reactor (1219kW)
- Total Thrust: 110,000
- Effective Sensor Radius: 54,000 meters
- Crew: 1 pilot
Seeing the level of ‘success’ that the Ground-based Doms managed to achieve after its confrontation with the Federation’s Gundam and all the other battles, while at the same time, seeing how badly the war is going for them on Earth. The Zeon High Command decided to prepare the Doms for the inevitable fight in space with the emboldened Earth Federation forces.
Hence, this is how Rick Dom is born. But there is a problem. They couldn’t produce enough of them fast enough, and not to mention they didn’t possess the same resources and manufacturing prowess as the Earth Federation. That is one of the reasons why towards the end of the war, the Earth Federation still saw the Principality of Zeon using slightly upgraded versions of the Zaku II.
The lack of standardization is another issue that the Zeon High Command faced during the war. That is because they had different MS models that needed the use of specific parts and weapons. Which inevitably caused a supply logistics problem for them.
To make matters worse, they found out too late that the new Rick Doms performance in space isn’t as impressive as the Standard Doms performance on Earth.
That is why they decided to go ahead with Colonel M’quve’s United Maintainance Plan late in the One Year War, and from that program, they got the Rick Dom II. Well, more precisely, one of many MS that is born from that program.
So, why there’s a need for a new Rick Dom variant when the standard Rick Doms are themselves new MS?
That is because the original iteration of the Rick Dom is basically just a refitted for space Dom. That means the Rick Doms uses the same armor configuration as its Ground-Based Doms. So that is why when they tested the Rick Dom’s capability in outer space, they found that the Rick Dom didn’t perform as well as they liked. Because they originally designed Dom’s armor specifically for land combat, not for space combat, so even when they refitted it, they found a significant drop in performance.
So that is why they decided to make some changes to the Rick Dom.
Well, when we say to make ‘some’ changes, what we mean is that they almost completely overhauled the whole thing.
Like the armor, they redesigned them to use a more planar structure, which means the armor is studier and lighter when compared to the standard Rick Dom armor set. That enables them to install a more powerful generator on the Rick Dom II. They also installed more apogee motors on the Rick Dom II to improve Rick Dom II’s mobility. They also gave it a pair of propellant tanks to increase its operating time on the field.
They incorporated Gelgoogs technology into Rick Dom II’s design, like the vernier tuning, setup, and the sensors. That is why Rick Dom II’s overall performance almost matches the one on the standard Gelgoogs.
And to achieve the other United Maintainance plans objective, they also simplified the production of the Rick Dom II and increased its overall durability so the MS could be operating with minimal maintenance. They used a second-stage cockpit system to lessen the burden placed on the pilots and to help lessen the training required for new pilots.
But even with all these advancements and changes made, the Rick Dom II’s did not come fast enough, nor did they manage to help the Principality to win the war in the final months of the war.
But at the very least it does manage to make life hard for the Earth Federation forces towards the end.
So, at least that is something?
With that ends the history lesson, and now on to the review.
The Review -Part 1 The Building Experience
Even though I have built a lot of HG kits throughout the years, it’s not often I find myself surprised by them. Admittedly, I expected building this old HGUC kit to feel like all the other old HGUC kits I’ve worked on throughout the years, old and aging poorly compared to the new kits.
So imagine my surprise when I found out that all of my assumptions coming in were really off the mark. For the right reasons, that is.
Yes, at some point, I did see that there are parts here and there that have aged poorly here. For instance, it had some seam line issues that look bad at certain angles, and yes, it doesn’t have the same level of complexity that you get with modern HG kits.
But yet, it manages to be as fun as building any modern HG kit. Admittedly, that baffles me.
Eventually, as I completed this HGUC kit, I realized why.
Because I realized that building the HGUC Rick Dom II, I feel like I’m working on the best version of the old HGUC format.
What do I mean by this?
Well, for instance, take the seam line issue. I can see that while building the HGUC Rick Dom II, I can see that designers purposely made it so that the exact placement of the seam line placed in a location hard enough for one to notice that it will take a very keen eye to realize the issue. Plus, they purposely designed the seam line issue in a certain way that any newbie builders will find easy to deal with here.
Plus, even though the HGUC Rick Dom II parts are simple in the design, I can see that the designers really crafted the parts quite well.
The designers crafted the parts for the HGUC Rick Dom II so well that I find that the overall building experience of this HGUC Rick Dom II is as good as its modern counterpart.
Which again, I admit, is quite impressive.
Part 2: Articulation and Looks
The other thing that I’m impressed by is the color separation on the HGUC Rick Dom II’s parts.
Because for an old kit, I find that most of the parts looked very accurate to what we see on the boxart and its promotional materials.
Although it is common nowadays that we get HG kits that come with very color-accurate parts that look exactly like what we see on the box, for older kits, however, the same isn’t true.
Take the HGUC GM Command Space Type, although the main kit looks quite color accurate, but not its beam spray weapon. You’ll need to put in quite a bit of paintwork to make it look close to its boxart or promotional materials counterpart.
While with the HGUC Rick Dom II, the HGUC Rick Dom II doesn’t require a lot of paintworks to make it look close to its promotional materials. You can leave it as-is if you choose to do so.
The color separation is that good.
However, if there is one thing about this kit that I can see didn’t age too well, that would be the HGUC Rick Dom II’s articulation system.
Because it comes with a fixed peg system, so what that means is there is a limit on what you can do when it comes down to the articulation for the HGUC Rick Dom II. The other issue with this fixed peg system is that I can easily break it if I placed too much pressure on the pegs or if I were to overdo the poses by pushing the HGUC Rick Dom II’s articulation to its absolute limit.
But strangely enough, there is one thing that they did get right here, and that would be with the manipulators (HGUC Rick Dom II’s hand unit). Because unlike many of its counterparts, old and new, this kit comes with a manipulator set (HGUC Rick Dom II’s hand unit) with moving fingers.
Why is this important, you ask?
Well, that is because when I need to swap HGUC Rick Dom II’s weapons, there is no need for me to take the whole manipulator units off to replace them, which we admit is quite convenient. Admittedly, it is nice to have just one fixed manipulator unit that I need to deal with instead of having a whole bloody set and worrying about where I place every one of them when I need to replace its weapons or change its poses.
But wouldn’t that make life hard when posing the kit since it may cause the weapon to drop? Honestly? That is what I thought too when I worked on it, but surprisingly enough, it could hold the weapons quite well, with no issues. So obviously, it wins more brownie points with me when I discovered this nice little feature.
Plus, this is one good-looking HGUC kit, even when I compared it to its other HGUC counterparts, new and old. Which, honestly, is quite impressive if I have to be honest.
Part 3: Price and Final Thoughts
So how much is this retailing right now? Surely for something this awesome, it would be expensive, right?
Because currently, we can find it selling at only RM 57 (USD 13.11/ EUR 12.43). So it is quite a cheap kit. So if you’re in the market to build an old but awesome HGUC kit, you might want to consider getting this.
So, yes, the HGUC Rick Dom II is a kit that we recommend getting.
Yes, it does have some issues due to its age. But all the problems that the HGUC Rick Dom II has doesn’t hold the kit back from being one badass HGUC kit. I would even go as far as to say that this HGUC kit still holds up well in this day and age, even when compared to the newer HGUC kits out there.
Heck, I would even go as far as to say that I had more fun working on this HGUC kit than I did with the previously worked MG Lunamaria Zaku Warrior.
That is how impressive this kit is. It is so good that it even beat my recent experience building an MG kit.
So, yes, this is an instant must-buy.
That concludes my review of the HG 1/144 MS-09R Rick Dom II (HGUC). A pretty pleasant surprise this HGUC turns out to be! Coming in, I really didn’t expect to have a lot of fun working on this kit, but I’m glad that I did.
Now I’m really looking forward to starting work on the next project because I will be building an MG Ver.2.0 kit! I hope that the overall building experience for the MG Ver.2.0 Mk.II will be as good or better than this old HGUC kit.
Anyways, we will be back again next week (hopefully) with a new blog post. So, please do look forward to that!
Also, we wanted to take the time to wish all of our Muslim readers an awesome belated Eid Al-Fitr! I know it’s a bit late, and I know we have been missing since Thursday, but the unexpected holiday announcement on our end really puts all our plans out of the window, and we are sorry for the lack of updates on the blog. We have been quite busy with our own Eid preparations.
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