Japanese Theme Park Unveils New Life-Sized Gundam
2020 hasn’t been all bad. For one thing, it’s brought us a new life-sized Gundam.
A one-to-one scale model of Japan’s most popular robot was officially unveiled this week in the city of Yokohama, and this one actually moves.
It’s the star attraction of a new complex called Gundam Factory Yokohama, which also features a set of observation decks for fans to see the Mobile Suit Gundam in action up-close, as well as a ‘cockpit experience’ area where visitors can see inside the replica’s flight deck in real-time.
A 59ft-tall Gundam is a pretty tricky thing to keep under wraps, so if you’re a fan – or happen to live in Yokohama – you’ll probably have seen the model while it’s been under construction over the past year or so.
As per Kotaku, the replica is based on Gundam RX-78F00, and while it’s not the first life-sized model to be built in Japan, it is the first that moves like the real thing, thanks to 24 articulated joints that allow the robot to walk, raise its arms and move its head.
Mr Kawahara, the lead designer for the model, told YouTube channel Japan Pro:
Many people have told us they want to see the Gundam move…
I feel like we’ve just finished the ‘homework’ given by many Gundam fans.
Footage of the model taking its first steps were shown back in September, and although it’s actually been finished for a few months, it’s taken a while for the attraction to officially be unveiled.
The giant Gundam was initially slated to open back in October, but plans were put on hold as Japan dealt with an uptick in Covid-19 cases. But it’s ready to go now, and members of the public can visit the Gundam Factory from December 19.
Once global travel eventually resumes, piloting a real-life Gundam is yet another thing anime fans can add to their bucket lists.
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