Amuro and the Zeta Series

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Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Underrated GM Custom » Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:11 pm

Good afternoon everyone,

Earlier today I was looking up some information on the Guncannon DT and the Nemo's of the 0096 era which led me to halfway though one of the old Unicorn mega threads. A lot of spirited discussions and overall a very enjoyable reread seeing the different perspectives.

While I was going through that it also pointed out the brief Re-GZ cameo in Unicorn. The Re-GZ was never an eye-catching suit to me and I never paid much mind to it. But I did see a Re-GZ Custom once and decided it'd be fun to educate myself a bit more on the suit. While I was researching I had an interesting thought pop into my head.

Why is Amuro using the Re-GZ in 0093?

The Re-GZ appears to be a very underwhelming suit. It was Anaheim's latest attempt to mass produce the Zeta Gundam, instead of slapping a G-Defensor on the back of a Gundam MK-II and calling it an upgrade, instead we start off with a flying backpack that appears to have the function of a Base Jabber with integrated weapons that is discarded upon entering the battlespace.

From a narrative perspective the Re-GZ serves to show how much more powerful or advanced the Sazabi and Jagd Doga are compared to it, that sharp divide shows the audience was a giant leap forward the Nu Gundam is.

The Re-GZ is an interesting case though, while the Zeta Plus series essentially maintained the high performance of the Zeta while looking at every avenue to minimize cost the Refined Gundam Zeta appears to be another attempt at a Grunt suit using some Zeta design elements, modern avionics/sensors, but still appears to be inferior to the Zeta Gundam and Zeta Plus.

So if the Re-GZ is inferior to the Zeta Gundam I had to wonder why would Amuro be using it?

If all Londo Bell has is Jegan's and the Re-GZ well that makes sense. We can infer that since their best pilots on deck use the Re-GZ that it is either superior or equal to the Jegan in performance. If it's superior well that's a no brainer. If it's equal to a Jegan there are other factors as well, the ReGZ is certainly more durable, may have access to better weaponry or at least more variety and it has the nifty trick of having a waverider backpack to quickly approach the battlespace.

But I have to wonder why they only have the Re-GZ. If the Re-GZ is to the Zeta what the GM is to the Gundam, why would Amuro be using the Re-GZ when he previously piloted a Zeta Gundam.

When you look at all the MS Amuro piloted, a lot of it is apocryphal information. In Sentinel (87-88) we have the Zeta Plus A1 and the Gundam MK V Amuro variant. The Zeta Plus A1 for instance is said to be tuned to Amuro's specifications, likewise for the Gundam MK V Amuro type but he's never officially piloted either. Here are some of notable MS for Amuro.

Zeta Gundam (1985)
-Rick Dias
-Dijeh

Hi-Streamer (1987)
-Jeddah

Moon Gundam (2017)
-Jeddah
-Rick Dijeh

MS Evolve (2006) & Green Divers (2001)
-White Unicorn Zeta Gundam

CCA (1988)
-ReGZ
-Nu Gundam

While I love the Rick Dijeh obviously the designs came out quite a bit later. What I find interesting is that Amuro piloted a Zeta Gundam at the tail end of the Gryps war, so why would he be using the inferior Re-GZ during CCA?

I suppose we can say that Green Divers and Evolve aren't canon. It still seems odd that the hero of the OYW is relegated to a grunt version when the Zeta Plus series exists. Out of Universe Sentinel designs involve shared intellectual property and I'm sure Sunrise would rather sell a new kit rather than share revenue. So if we rule out Zeta Plus it still seems odd they've give him the ReGZ instead of another Zeta Gundam. While the Nu Gundam is waiting in the wings it always seemed odd to me he had to make due with a very lackluster MS until it was completed.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:08 pm

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:11 pm
The Re-GZ appears to be a very underwhelming suit. It was Anaheim's latest attempt to mass produce the Zeta Gundam, instead of slapping a G-Defensor on the back of a Gundam MK-II and calling it an upgrade, instead we start off with a flying backpack that appears to have the function of a Base Jabber with integrated weapons that is discarded upon entering the battlespace.

From a narrative perspective the Re-GZ serves to show how much more powerful or advanced the Sazabi and Jagd Doga are compared to it, that sharp divide shows the audience was a giant leap forward the Nu Gundam is.
The RGZ-91 Re-GZ is a prototype high-end mass production Mobile Suit. Of course it wouldn't compare favorably to one-off or limited production ultra-high end Mobile Suits intended for Newtypes. That's like saying that a Mustang's not as good as Koenigsegg Regera. It's true, but it ignores the fundamental difference in scale and intent. In spec, the Re-GZ stands head and shoulders above the other mass production mobile suits of the period: the Federation's Jegan and GM III, and Neo Zeon's Geara Doga.



Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:11 pm
The Re-GZ is an interesting case though, while the Zeta Plus series essentially maintained the high performance of the Zeta while looking at every avenue to minimize cost the Refined Gundam Zeta appears to be another attempt at a Grunt suit using some Zeta design elements, modern avionics/sensors, but still appears to be inferior to the Zeta Gundam and Zeta Plus.

So if the Re-GZ is inferior to the Zeta Gundam I had to wonder why would Amuro be using it?
Gundam's obsession with super-prototypes inevitably means that attempts to economize the designs for mass production are never as impressive. That said, on spec, the Re-GZ actually outperforms the Zeta Plus in practically every objective metric too... which is unsurprising because it's newer and the Zeta Plus was also an aggressive go at an economized Zeta. The Re-GZ also costs less than the Zeta Plus thanks to the abolition of the transformation mechanism.

As to why Amuro was using it... at the time, it was the best Mobile Suit that Londo Bell had on hand.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 4:11 pm
But I have to wonder why they only have the Re-GZ. If the Re-GZ is to the Zeta what the GM is to the Gundam, why would Amuro be using the Re-GZ when he previously piloted a Zeta Gundam.
Because that's what was available. The original Zeta Gundam had been destroyed in the First Neo Zeon War and lore hadn't yet introduced more of them.

(One of the novelizations, I think it was High Streamer, took the view that the Federation considered the Gundams as dangerous as nuclear weapons and had locked them away.)
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by yazi88 » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:21 pm

Since we are on the subject... is the ReZEL from Unicorn considered a better unit than the Re-GZ? Given that it is a combination of the Jegan, Re-GZ and Methus It seems to have better weapons and cost effective too. I think it performs better in every way than the units it is based on.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Chris » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:31 pm

I wouldn't necessarily discount the Re-GZ as an underwhelming suit. After all, Amuro managed to hold his own against Gyunei's Jagd Doga at the beginning of CCA, and unlike Char, Gyunei definitely wasn't the type to hold back against an opponent at a disadvantage.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:59 pm

yazi88 wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:21 pm
Since we are on the subject... is the ReZEL from Unicorn considered a better unit than the Re-GZ? Given that it is a combination of the Jegan, Re-GZ and Methus It seems to have better weapons and cost effective too. I think it performs better in every way than the units it is based on.
On objective metrics, it appears to be lower performance than the Re-GZ... with less generator output, less sensor range, and its greater thrust is offset by its greater weight.
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by yazi88 » Wed Jun 09, 2021 7:28 pm

Ah, that makes sense then. Weapons wise it does like a better unit with the beam launcher, beam shield beam cannon, and the beam rifle bayonet. Although the Re-Gz did have strong beam weapons but only on the BWS system.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Mafty » Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:37 am

As the others have said a lot of this probably ties into the real world timeline. CCA was released in 1988; which was long before a lot of Amuro's more powerful units were revealed in side stories, and the side stories in Gundam are of a dubious canon to begin with. Gundam does have a habit of retconning more powerful designs into older time periods after all( The numerous Gundams in the OYW, The MK II implies it was only the second Gundam ever made till the side stories and Stardust Memory, the massive amount of old Zeon units/remnants in Unicorn that were nowhere to be seen three years earlier in CCA, etc).

However this also leads to another question, was the Z or ZZ more powerful? Many variants of the Zeta exist, but there don't seem to be many of the ZZ. The Zeta has the Waver Rider and Biosensor, which would be helpful with the powerful Newtype Amuro was; but the ZZ had a massive amount of beam weaponry, that wasn't really recreated. Granted the ZZ beam was a power drain and the massive Newtype weaponry may have been more powerful...

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Underrated GM Custom » Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am

Seto Kaiba wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:08 pm
In spec, the Re-GZ stands head and shoulders above the other mass production mobile suits of the period: the Federation's Jegan and GM III, and Neo Zeon's Geara Doga.
This is what makes the Re-GZ cameo in Unicorn interesting. If the Re-GZ is head and shoulders above the Jegan then why is it a hanger queen instead of being used? After Amuro switched to the Nu the Re-GZ was immediately used by their next best pilot Kayra. Yet in 0096 we see Jegans and Rezels in use and not the Re-GZ. I'd like to hope the Ra Caillum had more than 4 pilots available. I suppose we can infer that the Jestas are superior to the Re-GZ.

Out of universe I'm guessing the Re-GZ isn't in the novels so it's just a fun cameo not to be looked into too deeply.
That said, on spec, the Re-GZ actually outperforms the Zeta Plus in practically every objective metric too... which is unsurprising because it's newer and the Zeta Plus was also an aggressive go at an economized Zeta. The Re-GZ also costs less than the Zeta Plus thanks to the abolition of the transformation mechanism.
Setting aside specs for a minute, the Zeta Plus series is generally described as Zeta performance at a slightly lower cost. Wing binders instead of wave rider, and Atmosphere or Space choose 1. Description wise the Re-GZ sounds like a watered down Zeta performance wise since it's built with Jegan parts. Thus you'd think the Zeta Plus would be higher performing than the Re-GZ. Bringing specs back in, any mass production model in the 0093 era probably should be better than the 0089 era for the same class of suit.
As to why Amuro was using it... at the time, it was the best Mobile Suit that Londo Bell had on hand.
Well with Sentinel starting up in 1987 there is the possibility for Amuro to use a Zeta or Zeta Plus. If they could build a second Hyaku Shiki for ZZ there's no big leap to think they couldn't build a second Zeta for Amuro.

I suppose we could say that the Federation didn't think of Neo Zeon as a threat thus Londo Bell is underfunded and was only stuck with cast off prototypes like the Re-GZ.
(One of the novelizations, I think it was High Streamer, took the view that the Federation considered the Gundams as dangerous as nuclear weapons and had locked them away.)
I've heard that about Hi-Streamer as well. It's an interesting take isn't it? Gundams are certainly dangerous but aside from the Psycho Gundams you don't really see them being used against Federation assets. Still, it seems a bit odd to me they would deny any Gundam units to a ship captained by Bright and piloted by Amuro.
Chris wrote:
Wed Jun 09, 2021 6:31 pm
I wouldn't necessarily discount the Re-GZ as an underwhelming suit. After all, Amuro managed to hold his own against Gyunei's Jagd Doga at the beginning of CCA, and unlike Char, Gyunei definitely wasn't the type to hold back against an opponent at a disadvantage.
Great point, although Amuro can hold his own with just about anything, even threatening a Gouf with the almighty Guncannon. When we see Kayra in the Re-GZ vs Gyunei later she struggles quite a bit since she doesn't have Amuro's experience dealing with Psycommu weapons or Newtype reactions.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by domtropen » Thu Jun 10, 2021 7:02 pm

Both Mass produced ZZ and Theta Plus are running around in mangas.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by MythSearcher » Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:55 pm

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am

This is what makes the Re-GZ cameo in Unicorn interesting. If the Re-GZ is head and shoulders above the Jegan then why is it a hanger queen instead of being used? After Amuro switched to the Nu the Re-GZ was immediately used by their next best pilot Kayra. Yet in 0096 we see Jegans and Rezels in use and not the Re-GZ. I'd like to hope the Ra Caillum had more than 4 pilots available. I suppose we can infer that the Jestas are superior to the Re-GZ.
Simple guess: harder to maintain.
The AV-8 was given to the best pilots but was a very tricky unit to maintain, rendering the pilots having much less air time than the F-18 pilots, who were considered less capable than the AV-8 pilots before those assignments.
I would imagine the Z+ line(including ReGZ, which was developed from Z+ R, which was modified from a Z+ C1) with all its transformation structures would be like the AV-8's VTOL fans and the Jegan, a very simple structure, will be more like the F-18.
While ReGZ didn't have the transformation structure itself, with its one off production(likely for testing?), its parts are likely either custom made or borrowed from other existing units, in this case, likely Z+. Which creates another problem, getting parts for repairs will be harder, so the ReGZ is there, and we might see it almost intact, yet it might not be functional, as the Ra Cailum isn't a mothership for the Z+ and the previous battle in 0093 may have exhausted a lot of parts for it, and the higher-ups likely won't approve of the logistics request to ship them those parts for every reason you can think of, including political ones, logistical ones, economical ones, etc. There is no reason to maintain a test unit that they are not going to produce after all. Bright might be keeping it for 2 reasons: 1) as a backup unit. given that it might work at least once more, you never know if you need to use it or not. As long as the ship is not completely filled up, might as well leave it there and not write it off. (I mean, I know that exact feeling as I am a civil servant and those obsolete ancient monitors laying around on the office floor have proven to be useful for more than thrice in my office.) 2) Nostalgic reasons.
Well with Sentinel starting up in 1987 there is the possibility for Amuro to use a Zeta or Zeta Plus. If they could build a second Hyaku Shiki for ZZ there's no big leap to think they couldn't build a second Zeta for Amuro.

I suppose we could say that the Federation didn't think of Neo Zeon as a threat thus Londo Bell is underfunded and was only stuck with cast off prototypes like the Re-GZ.
Oh, they have a second Zeta for Aumro, the MSZ-006-3 from Greendivers. Also appeared in Evolve 9 and well, you know what happened to it.
Great point, although Amuro can hold his own with just about anything, even threatening a Gouf with the almighty Guncannon. When we see Kayra in the Re-GZ vs Gyunei later she struggles quite a bit since she doesn't have Amuro's experience dealing with Psycommu weapons or Newtype reactions.
I do have to say, anyone piloting a MS tuned for Amuro would be at a handicap like how Chris felt on the NT-1.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:27 pm

Mafty wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 10:37 am
However this also leads to another question, was the Z or ZZ more powerful? Many variants of the Zeta exist, but there don't seem to be many of the ZZ. The Zeta has the Waver Rider and Biosensor, which would be helpful with the powerful Newtype Amuro was; but the ZZ had a massive amount of beam weaponry, that wasn't really recreated. Granted the ZZ beam was a power drain and the massive Newtype weaponry may have been more powerful...
The ZZ... though that power came at the price of a lack of battlefield endurance and the excessive maintenance requirements that came with it unique design. It's not surprising the Federation decided the ZZ was "Awesome but impractical" like pretty much every Gundam.




Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am
This is what makes the Re-GZ cameo in Unicorn interesting. If the Re-GZ is head and shoulders above the Jegan then why is it a hanger queen instead of being used? After Amuro switched to the Nu the Re-GZ was immediately used by their next best pilot Kayra. Yet in 0096 we see Jegans and Rezels in use and not the Re-GZ. I'd like to hope the Ra Caillum had more than 4 pilots available. I suppose we can infer that the Jestas are superior to the Re-GZ.
It's probably best to avoid thinking too hard about any of the cameos in Unicorn... that was less an OVA and more an attempt to name every MSV design that hadn't been animated yet.

Mind you, since the Re-GZ was a high-end prototype that seemingly never took off like so many other UC designs the most likely problem is the one that always kills programs like this in the UC... cost. Odds are that, despite a lower price tag than previous attempts to mass produce the Zeta, the Re-GZ was still too expensive for the EFF's brass to get the funding approved by the Federation general assembly.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am
Setting aside specs for a minute, the Zeta Plus series is generally described as Zeta performance at a slightly lower cost. Wing binders instead of wave rider, and Atmosphere or Space choose 1. Description wise the Re-GZ sounds like a watered down Zeta performance wise since it's built with Jegan parts. Thus you'd think the Zeta Plus would be higher performing than the Re-GZ. Bringing specs back in, any mass production model in the 0093 era probably should be better than the 0089 era for the same class of suit.
Eh... yes and no. The Zeta Plus is described as having better cost-performance than the Zeta, but it came with a very steep non-monetary cost. Most versions of the Zeta Plus are not space-capable. Only the C1 type can fly or fight in space, and those didn't fare so hot in the Pezun Rebellion. Since elimination of the space-use equipment was a big part of the Zeta Plus's cost reduction, it's likely the C1 type was nearly as expensive as the actual Zeta Gundam. The Re-GZ is acknowledged as being cheaper than the Zeta Plus as well.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am
Well with Sentinel starting up in 1987 there is the possibility for Amuro to use a Zeta or Zeta Plus. If they could build a second Hyaku Shiki for ZZ there's no big leap to think they couldn't build a second Zeta for Amuro.
Given the production lead time needed for something like a movie, Sentinel almost certainly started its own development after Char's Counterattack was already well on its way.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am
I suppose we could say that the Federation didn't think of Neo Zeon as a threat thus Londo Bell is underfunded and was only stuck with cast off prototypes like the Re-GZ.
The Re-GZ wasn't "cast off" at the time... it was a high-end prototype that was being seriously considered for mass production. It outclassed even Neo Zeon's new line MS.

The obvious reason the Re-GZ didn't become a new Main MS is likely because it looks too much like it belongs to a main character, so they had to come up with a more fodder-y main MS to blow up left and right.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:49 am
I've heard that about Hi-Streamer as well. It's an interesting take isn't it? Gundams are certainly dangerous but aside from the Psycho Gundams you don't really see them being used against Federation assets. Still, it seems a bit odd to me they would deny any Gundam units to a ship captained by Bright and piloted by Amuro.
I'd have an easier time believing "the cost of maintaining and operating these things is stupidly high so we locked them up except for emergencies". One of the most unbelievable things about Gundam is how the EFF (and later Zeon as well) keep spending massively on one-of-a-kind Mobile Suits that will NEVER make it to any kind of mass production.
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by MythSearcher » Fri Jun 11, 2021 5:12 am

Seto Kaiba wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:27 pm
Given the production lead time needed for something like a movie, Sentinel almost certainly started its own development after Char's Counterattack was already well on its way.
Not quite.
Bandai knew they wanted a new movie, and knew that the movie won't be out soon, so they wanted something in between and contacted Model Graphix to create a novel, so both of the projects were started pretty close to each other, thanks to Bandai's well planned strategy to sell models. *sarcasm
Yes, Bandai's plan was not nearly perfect, they didn't plan into their own idiotic higher-ups keep rejecting the mechanical designs of S Gundam (until Katoki painted it in the the red blue yellow colour) thus delaying the project, and they also didn't take into account novel serialisation requires time and is very slow in pace compared to anime. So not until they are already well into producing CCA's models. Sentinel models are delayed, and caused a bunch of unhappy relationship between the parties and Newtype magazine along with people like Anno was involved and figuratively slapped Bandai in the face before they are forced by fans to produce a mere 5 models for the series and didn't want to have anything to do with it until almost a decade later.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Underrated GM Custom » Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm

MythSearcher wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:55 pm
Simple guess: harder to maintain.
I do like that explanation, the Re-GZ could be a hangar queen because it's simply lacking available replacement parts so Bright is keeping it as a just-in-case. I don't know if Z+ parts are ever mentioned but it's mentioned in either the MG or HG kit that it shares parts with the Jegan. So perhaps the part it is missing are the Zeta-derived ones. Although since this is Re-GZ #2, the first one being completely destroyed it's surprising there aren't any parts left. Perhaps Re-GZ #2 is a G-3 style of construction where it's made out of all the replacement parts available.
Oh, they have a second Zeta for Aumro, the MSZ-006-3 from Greendivers. Also appeared in Evolve 9 and well, you know what happened to it.
That's where I'm getting some continuity whiplash. 20 years later we have Amuro depicted in a Zeta fighting for Karaba/AEUG. In-universe after that he's using a mass-produced Zeta. I suppose the White Unicorn Zeta could have been destroyed at some point but it still begs the question why not build another Zeta for Amuro instead of giving him the Re-GZ.
I do have to say, anyone piloting a MS tuned for Amuro would be at a handicap like how Chris felt on the NT-1.
That brings up a very good question on how much the mechanics and deck chief can modify MS tuning out in the field. Presumably the Re-GZ was custom tuned to Amuro during depot maintenance at an AE facility. After he upgrades to the Nu how much are they able to adjust the Re-GZ tuning for Kayra? In UC is the tuning strictly adjusting the onboard computer and controls (ala SEED) or does it require extensive adjustments to the electromechanical system?

I'm leaning towards a mix of both. The hanger crew likely did their best in the short time they had between battles which allowed Kayra to perform very well, but she was brought down by overwhelmed by numbers and dealing with an enemy that has a Psycommu system.

Seto Kaiba wrote:
Thu Jun 10, 2021 11:27 pm
The ZZ... though that power came at the price of a lack of battlefield endurance and the excessive maintenance requirements that came with it unique design.
So I'm not sold on the ZZ having a superior performance to the Z, it always seemed like more of a sidegrade to me. The Z being more agile while the big boxy frame of the ZZ boasts far superior firepower which is needed to deal with the monster-of-the-week ZZ rogue's gallery that follows the bigger-is-better principle.
It's probably best to avoid thinking too hard about any of the cameos in Unicorn... that was less an OVA and more an attempt to name every MSV design that hadn't been animated yet.
To be honest I loved the MSV museum exhibit during the Jaburo arc of Zeta. As an avowed Nemo fan I would have loved to see a few useful seconds of Nemo III during Unicorn's runtime prior to its glorious demise :lol:
Given the production lead time needed for something like a movie, Sentinel almost certainly started its own development after Char's Counterattack was already well on its way.
So Tomino got the greenlight for CCA during the latter part of ZZ (late 86). Sentinel starts running in 87 but for a joint-venture like this they would have been in talks and negotiations quite a ways prior, so it's very possible both were in production phase in parallel. That's just for the Zeta+ though, the Hyaku Shiki in ZZ is the 2nd model so Bandai could have easily used a 2nd Zeta for CCA. But a new model is better for model sales! :D
The Re-GZ wasn't "cast off" at the time... it was a high-end prototype that was being seriously considered for mass production. It outclassed even Neo Zeon's new line MS.

The obvious reason the Re-GZ didn't become a new Main MS is likely because it looks too much like it belongs to a main character, so they had to come up with a more fodder-y main MS to blow up left and right.
Funny you mention that, the Re-GZ never struck me as a main character type suit with the muted grey and blue color scheme. It fits in nicely with Victory's Gun-EZ with the supporting suit aesthetic.

For my 'cast off' comment I was under the impression that it had already been deemed too costly and unsuitable to mass production prior to CCA and thus was given to Londo Bell. I don't have any kit manuals handy but was there anything in there or another source stating that the Re-GZ was still in the testing phase prior to the go/no-go mass production decision during CCA?
I'd have an easier time believing "the cost of maintaining and operating these things is stupidly high so we locked them up except for emergencies".
Oh absolutely! That's actually a good argument for giving Amuro the Re-GZ over another Zeta. The Federation balked at the maintenance labor & mats cost for the Zeta and so we get the Re-GZ assigned to Londo Bell, since it shares parts with the Jegan and thus makes the supply chain easier. Since the Federation still didn't believe of Zeon as a threat at the time it makes sense Londo Bell's budget would be highly scrutinized and prone to bureaucratic meddling.

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:12 pm

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm
[...] at some point but it still begs the question why not build another Zeta for Amuro instead of giving him the Re-GZ.
There are three incredibly obvious answers:
  • Cost. Gundams are EXPENSIVE. Amuro may be a veteran and a newtype, but he's still just a regular soldier and fairly low-ranking officer in Londo Bell. Building and maintaining a Gundam costs a lot more than a production MS and requires non-standard parts to be stocked for maintenance.
  • Trust. The Earth Federation made it pretty clear it did not trust Newtypes in general, as Amuro spent close to seven years living under what was effectively house arrest in a mansion full of government minders between the events of the One Year War's end and being convinced to join the AEUG in 0087. Even after joining Londo Bell, his rank and position were relatively low given his actual capabilities.
  • Role. As an expert MS pilot, Amuro was assigned to the Re-GZ to evaluate the prototype's performance and its viability as a future mass-production MS.
Not to mention the side effect of the Zeta being used in another title under active development at the same time... would you want to subject a main character mecha in a side story to The Worf Effect in a main feature at the same time? Probably not.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm
That brings up a very good question on how much the mechanics and deck chief can modify MS tuning out in the field. Presumably the Re-GZ was custom tuned to Amuro during depot maintenance at an AE facility. After he upgrades to the Nu how much are they able to adjust the Re-GZ tuning for Kayra? In UC is the tuning strictly adjusting the onboard computer and controls (ala SEED) or does it require extensive adjustments to the electromechanical system?
There's no mention I can find that the Re-GZ was specially tuned for Amuro's Newtype reflexes. Plenty of mention that the Zeta series in general has rather oversensitive and unstable handling tho.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm
So I'm not sold on the ZZ having a superior performance to the Z, it always seemed like more of a sidegrade to me. The Z being more agile while the big boxy frame of the ZZ boasts far superior firepower which is needed to deal with the monster-of-the-week ZZ rogue's gallery that follows the bigger-is-better principle.
The specs clearly indicate the ZZ had superior performance.

Much more reactor power, better peak acceleration, better sensors, much more firepower...

The ZZ's issue was it lacked staying power thanks to its sensitive transformation system and the energy drain that its high mega cannon imposes on the power system.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm
Funny you mention that, the Re-GZ never struck me as a main character type suit with the muted grey and blue color scheme. It fits in nicely with Victory's Gun-EZ with the supporting suit aesthetic.
It's still got a Gundam head... and you know what that means.

To be a fodder mecha you either have to look like a GM or have a monoeye.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:00 pm
For my 'cast off' comment I was under the impression that it had already been deemed too costly and unsuitable to mass production prior to CCA and thus was given to Londo Bell. I don't have any kit manuals handy but was there anything in there or another source stating that the Re-GZ was still in the testing phase prior to the go/no-go mass production decision during CCA?
There is nothing to indicate that it was a rejected prototype at the time of the Second Neo Zeon War. The CCA Dengeki Data Bank book says it was being actively considered for mass production at the time.
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Underrated GM Custom » Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm

Seto Kaiba wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 2:12 pm
There are three incredibly obvious answers:
Is that really necessary? I hope you can agree that acting as if questions have incredibly obvious answers doesn't improve or foster a community that wants to improve their knowledge of Mecha and the universe they inhabit.

  • Cost.
  • Trust. The Earth Federation made it pretty clear it did not trust Newtypes in general, as Amuro spent close to seven years living under what was effectively house arrest in a mansion full of government minders between the events of the One Year War's end and being convinced to join the AEUG in 0087. Even after joining Londo Bell, his rank and position were relatively low given his actual capabilities.
  • Role.
Cost - Completely agree Gundam's are expensive. Doesn't stop the Federation from impulse buying them in every series :D

Role - Great point, Amuro was a Jeddah pilot prior to the Jegan so it makes sense he would also test out the Re-GZ.

Trust - Agreed, the Federation has shown itself to be distrustful of Newtypes but has no qualms about using them.

During Zeta Amuro is under house-arrest, breaks free, joins Karaba and fights against the Titans. The Titans, a superfaction of the EF, later become an enemy of the EF. A messy situation to be sure, and part of what makes Zeta so enjoyable. Afterwards, the AEUG melds into the Federation and Londo Bell is formed with Bright and Amuro on the Ra Cailum. His rank could be due to the fact he's a Newtype or could be due to the messy events of the Gryps conflict where he was temporarily an enemy. Hard to say.

Since then we've had Green Divers / MS Evolve put Amuro in a Zeta Gundam between Zeta and CCA. We can say that he was given that under AEUG/Karaba and since they melded back into the Federation they no longer want to have a Newtype piloting a Gundam. It's either destroyed and never rebuilt or locked away, fair enough.

But if the Federation lacks the trust to let him pilot a Zeta Gundam, what about the Nu Gundam? Amuro was allowed to be part of the design after-all, there's got to be some level of trust for that to happen. I suppose it's possible the Nu Gundam went from flash to bang entirely during Neo Zeon's reappearance, which is a pretty short time, I also think it's possibly the Nu Gundam (sans-Psychoframe) was in development prior to Char gathering his forces. There's also it's predecessor the Mu Gundam which allegedly Amuro test piloted around the Sentinel time period.

If we're talking a 1988 perspective and Sunrise/Bandai hasn't had the chance to fill in the gaps yet with a dozen Gundam's between ZZ and CCA then trust towards a Newtype is a major concern. From an in-universe perspective with today's lens it gets a bit murkier since we see him piloting Zeta then allegedly several test Gundams before going to the Re-Gz then back to a Gundam.

If we want to anchor on Trust being a primary driver for why Amuro doesn't always have a Gundam we could go with the following explanation. The Federation may be willing to keep paying AE to design and build Gundam's and let Amuro test them but is unwilling to let the Ra Cailum / Amuro use one except in dire circumstances.
The specs clearly indicate the ZZ had superior performance.

Much more reactor power, better peak acceleration, better sensors, much more firepower...
I'm not saying that the ZZ doesn't have superior characteristics, just that it and the Zeta are peers in the same class when it comes to performance. I should have clarified earlier when I said Performance, which can mean a whole lot of things, I was thinking solely in terms of maneuverability. The march of time always brings with it improved sensors & reactors, and the ZZ is packing considerably heavier firepower.

To me the Z and ZZ are similar to the Jegan and the GM III, the GM III has better straight line acceleration but the Jegan is more agile. The Jegan being newer has superiority in several areas but both suits bring a lot of value just in different roles, one bring versatility and long range attacks while the other is a remarkable interceptor type.

The Zeta did get hit by the Worf effect anytime someone besides Judau was piloting it. Which is a shame.
There is nothing to indicate that it was a rejected prototype at the time of the Second Neo Zeon War. The CCA Dengeki Data Bank book says it was being actively considered for mass production at the time.
Awesome, thank you for the reference!

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Mafty » Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:44 pm

There seems to be a lot of conflicting information on the Re-GZ. MAHQ seems to say that the Re-GZ was a prototype that was given to Londo Bell, after the hopeful mass production proved too costly. So in this regard it seems as though it wasn't built specifically for Amuro, rather given to the taskforce and assigned to Amuro as their top pilot.

This leads to some other questions...

How long exactly did Amuro pilot the Re-GZ? According to some sources the Second Neo Zeon War began on February 27th and ended on March 12th , a little under 2 weeks. Prior to that Char started the movement the prior December (which is an awfully quick turnaround for both armies to amass new prototype and mass produced MS and ships, but just go with it). It seems as though Londo Bell and its equipment (the Ra Callium, Clop, and Jeagan) were around for a while before the war started. If that was the case Amuro had probably been piloting the Re-GZ for months before replacing it with the Nu Gundam.

Was the BWS added to the Re-GZ? If it was too expensive to mass produce then it seems unlikely they would mass produce the Back Weapons System, was it added on later like with the Super Gundam?

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Sat Jun 12, 2021 12:22 am

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
Cost - Completely agree Gundam's are expensive. Doesn't stop the Federation from impulse buying them in every series :D
True, it doesn't... but the opposite side of that coin is that the obligatory Gundam super-prototype is always stuck in "Awesome, but Impractical" territory.

Gundam-type Mobile Suits are built with bleeding edge technology and the highest possible performance, but that makes it effectively impossible for the Federation to actually capitalize on their investment. They're built around the latest bleeding-edge technology and with the highest possible performance without regard for practicality. So they inevitably fail as prototypes because they're too expensive to mass produce, maintaining them costs far more than a typical Mobile Suit due to non-standard parts and materials, their unstable handling and over-the-top specs limit the pool of potential pilots to just the Federation's finest and whiny teenage superhumans, and at the end of the day developing them into something that actually CAN be mass-produced essentially means starting over from scratch.

The Earth Federation Forces and Karaba basically spent a solid decade and multiple development programs trying to turn the MSZ-006 Zeta Gundam into something that could be economically mass produced, and failed miserably every time they tried. They got a little closer each time, but they never reached the level where the end result became an attractive prospect compared to the standard mass-production MS of the era.

Every Gundam, save perhaps for the original and the LM312V04 Victory Gundam, is a failed prototype because of a fundamentally flawed development methodology.

When you get right down to it, the UC's answer to "why don't they just build another Gundam?" is almost always a question that'll come back to "because Gundams are a fundamentally terrible investment".


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
His rank could be due to the fact he's a Newtype or could be due to the messy events of the Gryps conflict where he was temporarily an enemy. Hard to say.
He had as little authority as they could get away with giving him... they made him a Lieutenant and gave him a single Mobile Suit platoon.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
But if the Federation lacks the trust to let him pilot a Zeta Gundam, what about the Nu Gundam? Amuro was allowed to be part of the design after-all, there's got to be some level of trust for that to happen.
Amuro submitted a proposal that got actioned because the materials to make it happen were conveniently sent to them by Neo Zeon... it's not a high level of trust.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
I also think it's possibly the Nu Gundam (sans-Psychoframe) was in development prior to Char gathering his forces.
It was. Amuro's role in its development was VERY limited, and it is said to have been already mostly completed at the time he first arrived at Anaheim.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
I'm not saying that the ZZ doesn't have superior characteristics, just that it and the Zeta are peers in the same class when it comes to performance. I should have clarified earlier when I said Performance, which can mean a whole lot of things, I was thinking solely in terms of maneuverability. The march of time always brings with it improved sensors & reactors, and the ZZ is packing considerably heavier firepower.

To me the Z and ZZ are similar to the Jegan and the GM III, the GM III has better straight line acceleration but the Jegan is more agile. The Jegan being newer has superiority in several areas but both suits bring a lot of value just in different roles, one bring versatility and long range attacks while the other is a remarkable interceptor type.

The Zeta did get hit by the Worf effect anytime someone besides Judau was piloting it. Which is a shame.
Maneuverability is a function of the instantaneous thrust-to-weight ratio, thrust-vectoring, and available verniers... on the numbers, the ZZ Gundam's got the Zeta cold.

Anything else comes down to the individual pilot's style, not the machine itself.
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Seto Kaiba » Sat Jun 12, 2021 12:22 am

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
Cost - Completely agree Gundam's are expensive. Doesn't stop the Federation from impulse buying them in every series :D
True, it doesn't... but the opposite side of that coin is that the obligatory Gundam super-prototype is always stuck in "Awesome, but Impractical" territory.

Gundam-type Mobile Suits are built with bleeding edge technology and the highest possible performance, but that makes it effectively impossible for the Federation to actually capitalize on their investment. They're built around the latest bleeding-edge technology and with the highest possible performance without regard for practicality. So they inevitably fail as prototypes because they're too expensive to mass produce, maintaining them costs far more than a typical Mobile Suit due to non-standard parts and materials, their unstable handling and over-the-top specs limit the pool of potential pilots to just the Federation's finest and whiny teenage superhumans, and at the end of the day developing them into something that actually CAN be mass-produced essentially means starting over from scratch.

The Earth Federation Forces and Karaba basically spent a solid decade and multiple development programs trying to turn the MSZ-006 Zeta Gundam into something that could be economically mass produced, and failed miserably every time they tried. They got a little closer each time, but they never reached the level where the end result became an attractive prospect compared to the standard mass-production MS of the era.

Every Gundam, save perhaps for the original and the LM312V04 Victory Gundam, is a failed prototype because of a fundamentally flawed development methodology.

When you get right down to it, the UC's answer to "why don't they just build another Gundam?" is almost always a question that'll come back to "because Gundams are a fundamentally terrible investment".


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
His rank could be due to the fact he's a Newtype or could be due to the messy events of the Gryps conflict where he was temporarily an enemy. Hard to say.
He had as little authority as they could get away with giving him... they made him a Lieutenant and gave him a single Mobile Suit platoon.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
But if the Federation lacks the trust to let him pilot a Zeta Gundam, what about the Nu Gundam? Amuro was allowed to be part of the design after-all, there's got to be some level of trust for that to happen.
Amuro submitted a proposal that got actioned because the materials to make it happen were conveniently sent to them by Neo Zeon... it's not a high level of trust.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
I also think it's possibly the Nu Gundam (sans-Psychoframe) was in development prior to Char gathering his forces.
It was. Amuro's role in its development was VERY limited, and it is said to have been already mostly completed at the time he first arrived at Anaheim.


Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm
I'm not saying that the ZZ doesn't have superior characteristics, just that it and the Zeta are peers in the same class when it comes to performance. I should have clarified earlier when I said Performance, which can mean a whole lot of things, I was thinking solely in terms of maneuverability. The march of time always brings with it improved sensors & reactors, and the ZZ is packing considerably heavier firepower.

To me the Z and ZZ are similar to the Jegan and the GM III, the GM III has better straight line acceleration but the Jegan is more agile. The Jegan being newer has superiority in several areas but both suits bring a lot of value just in different roles, one bring versatility and long range attacks while the other is a remarkable interceptor type.

The Zeta did get hit by the Worf effect anytime someone besides Judau was piloting it. Which is a shame.
Maneuverability is a function of the instantaneous thrust-to-weight ratio, thrust-vectoring, and available verniers... on the numbers, the ZZ Gundam's got the Zeta cold.

Anything else comes down to the individual pilot's style, not the machine itself.
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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by MythSearcher » Sat Jun 12, 2021 12:44 pm

Underrated GM Custom wrote:
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:06 pm

Well, in-universe I can give you some more reasons why they didn't just give Amuro a Zeta in 0093.

Zeta is no longer the top model at the time, ReGZ is.

The Z+ is not your typical Gundam franchise downgrade mass production unit. It is an upgrade unit like real life mass production where the hiccups and issues in the prototype is solved and with more units produced, you get a cost down(relatively)
Just compare the spec of Zeta and Z+ C1(the EFSF model), as we have discussed recently, the Z+ C1 is actually better in those visible performances other than thrust to mass , but with its higher mass ratio, it is a more efficient unit. You also get the more expensive upgrade Z+ D before EFSF finally have to think of budge for cost cuts, and think of ditching the inefficient transformation structures, thus you get Z+ R, with the BWS system, they think it can save costs(but obviously nobody even thought of ditching a state of the art weapon pack and thrusters is a problem, this part is not very realistic but I guess if you have the mentality of politicians and never consider the possibility of defeat so you always think you can pick it up after the battle, it can pass congress pretty easily)
Anyway, the resulted ReGZ has superior generator power, superior sensor range(basically ReGZ's used Jegan's sensors and only with its unique structure around the biosensor, and yes, even Jegan has superior sensor range than Zeta at the time), more verniers. With a dispensable BWS, it likely has more armour and survivability as well.
Granted, the ReGZ has inferior thrust to mass and lower power output for its beam rifle, but carries two beam cannon on its BWS and those likely covered fire power parts. If it ever needed an even higher power beam weapon like the Hyper Mega Launcher, it can always fall back to use a Z+ C1 Beam smart gun with a 50MW output.(compared to the Hyper Mega Launcher's 8.3MW)

ReGZ is currently testing and is available, Zeta isn't.

Considering the time Z+ C1 became a major high performance mass production model of EFSF is 0088(Not even veterans involved in training knew about it, so it likely showed up on manuals yet before Jan 0088) The upgrades to type D likely won't be around at least until 0090. And the type R later, ReGZ plan likely only started in 0091 and thus it makes sense that the ReGZ is available in 0093 for immediate use, maybe even better, Amuro IS testing that thing. They even have an Amuro custom planned(RGZ-91B, god knows where they find such an ancient big tree to cut down for the wooden parts on that beam rifle) and only stopped development because Amuro got plans for RX-93 and AE likely think that is better than making yet another obsolete TMS, which further supports why AE didn't just build a new Zeta for Amuro as well, they'd just build the ReGZ custom if they think that is a good idea.


Now, AE seems to be perfectly fine with privately building a, or may be even several VERY expensive MS for Amuro as long as they have the chance to collect data. And in Unicorn we also know that(while I don't really think that is a valid reason), how AE actually has some power to get EF to turn a blind eye on them. So Amuro can likely get a Zeta if AE and/or himself deemed fit, and EF likely can't have too much say about it other than bickering Bright for letting it onboard without higher-ups authorisation.(But Bright likely also have the authority to do so without further up in the hierarchy involved, yes, I am looking at RX-93 and think it is very suspicious, and well, Bright even has the authority to launch nukes, think about that for a minute)

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Re: Amuro and the Zeta Series

Post by Underrated GM Custom » Mon Jun 14, 2021 8:15 pm

MythSearcher wrote:
Sat Jun 12, 2021 12:44 pm
Well, in-universe I can give you some more reasons why they didn't just give Amuro a Zeta in 0093.
As always thank you for sharing your insights. I had a few questions when you have the time.
The Z+ is not your typical Gundam franchise downgrade mass production unit. It is an upgrade unit
Absolutely, the Zeta to the Z+ is much like the RX78-2 to the G-Line. Maintain the superior specs, add on improvements and cost savings where you can and continue to test out new technologies / load-outs.
Anyway, the resulted ReGZ has superior generator power, superior sensor range(basically ReGZ's used Jegan's sensors and only with its unique structure around the biosensor, and yes, even Jegan has superior sensor range than Zeta at the time), more verniers.
True the Re-GZ and Jegan have 14,200 Sensors compared to Zetas 14,000 sensors. Not as big a delta as we see between the close-combat Gundam (5.7km) vs the mid range Guncannon (6km) we talked about the other day :D Although the Zeta+ C1 has 17,000 on the Sensors without the Beamsmart gun radome. I guess that sensors package was too expensive to keep using at the time.
Granted, the ReGZ has inferior thrust to mass and lower power output for its beam rifle, but carries two beam cannon on its BWS and those likely covered fire power parts. If it ever needed an even higher power beam weapon like the Hyper Mega Launcher, it can always fall back to use a Z+ C1 Beam smart gun with a 50MW output.(compared to the Hyper Mega Launcher's 8.3MW)
I had thought I had read the BWS on the Re-GZ sported a mega beam launcher but looking over the MAHQ profile it's just the 2x Beam Cannons plus 1x Large Beam Cannon. I must be misremembering and thinking of either the Methus Kai "High Mega Cannon" which looks and sounds quite deadly or the Z II's backpack Mega Beam Rifle.

For the Beam Smartgun is it mentioned anywhere which units are compatible with it? I'd assume Zeta derivatives with equal or superior reactor power could do so but I'm curious if there are any special connectors that are required on the MS in order to bring out its full potential.
ReGZ is currently testing and is available, Zeta isn't.
Do you happen to know what happened to the White Unicorn Zeta? It was still in one piece at the end of Gundam Evolve 9 so I've been wondering about its whereabouts.
They even have an Amuro custom planned(RGZ-91B, god knows where they find such an ancient big tree to cut down for the wooden parts on that beam rifle)
At first I thought you were joking but then I saw the image of the Gundam sized AK-47, hahah. Was the Re-GZ custom ever actually built or is it a drawing board only design? If it was built I wonder if it was immediately decommissioned or conveniently lost and perhaps reacquired by someone like the Birnam group.

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