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HGBF 1/144 Gundam Exia Dark Matter Review

15/07/2014

DM005

Price: 1800 Yen

Been a while since I posted anything here and Gunpla related. Been busy with many matters in life, especially when you’re active in more than one hobby areas. I got this one while on a trip to KL earlier last month and just built it a few weeks ago. After someone said something to me last weekend, I felt that I should once again update my blog with some content. I took some shots as I built this one but didn’t properly shoot some as I did it before I slept. Nonetheless, onwards with the review!

Unit Brief

This is the Gunpla that Meijin Kawaguchi (Yuuki Tatsuya) uses for the final Gunple Battle Tournament against Reijy and Iori Sei. His Gundam Amazing Exia was crudely modified into this form because of someone’s selfish desire and dislike of Reijy. Yuuki further suffers as he is controlled to fight in a brutal manner all in the order to “win”. If you want to know more, do watch the amazing series Gunpla Battle Fighters!

Section 1: Box

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The box art highlights Dark Matter’s dual elemental swords and it was shown before it was actually used in the anime. Pretty cool stuff there although you won’t be seeing flames n’ ice in real life of course. The side of the box shows the gimmicks this kit has.

Section 2: Runners

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I was actually expecting more junk runners from Gundam Exia Repair II but Bandai decides to be smart and modifies the runners so that junk parts are kept to a minimum. You cannot build any other forms of Exia from buying this kit. At the very least. they finally gave colored clear parts for Exia (only the GN Sword blade edge was colored in Repair II) as well as beam sabers too. There are two alternate faces for Exia for you to use as well since they could’ve skipped molding the chin if they wanted to.

Section 3: Putting it Together

Section 3.1: Torso

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The torso is as per usual HG Exias in the past. I wish they changed the chest-to-shoulder areas as the design isn’t foolproof and the parts can come off rather easily, even if it is made of ABS plastic. The back plate is also different as it constructed to connect to its new backpack, so no, you cannot connect a normal GN Drive without modifying the connections. I also sharpened the chest fins so that it looks nicer.

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Apparently, the new parts aren’t as snapfit as I thought, it somehow cracks after I snugly fit the sharp fins for the chest vents. I had to cement both sides to ensure they don’t fall off. The crack is mostly noticeable from the inside although it was rather… surprising. I wonder if anyone went into this problem as well? Or did I insert it too hard?

Section 3.2: Head

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At first I was like, “Hey, look at that nice part separation!”, then I realized the red side-fins cracks from the inside as well after a short while snapfitting em’… I cemented em’ on before they can fall off unexpectedly later on. I really wondered then if I was putting it together too hard then see that there are no problems with the old sections at all… At any rate, I sharpened the V-fin so it looks more menacing. I used the normal face rather than the red face plate as it looked, not Exia for me. I like it like this better.

Section 3.3: Arms

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Arms are mostly the same as Repair II, just the shoulders are different. No problems here and the elbow only has 1 bending area as with older HGs, since it wasn’t updated at all. So no, you cannot be as cool as Meijin. =P

Section 3.4: Legs

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The only difference between this and Repair II, other than color, are the new knee armor and foot.You’ll have to be careful with the toes though as the small connection may break off. Mine did not, but my friend’s one did so I cemented this area as well. Kinda makes the kit feel of a lacking quality there now… Although it looks nice.

Section 3.5: Waist

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Nothing special to say, its just a black Repair II waist so the ball joints stays.

Section 3.X1: Interim

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It stands! Er, with these colors, it looks kinda weird without the backpack for me. :x

Section 3.6: Weapons

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Pretty straightforward here. The GN Sword Kai is split into 2 and the extra original GN Sword blade is used too. I wished they gave the old GN Sword underplate so I can stick the blades on the rifle but I guess they’ll only do that for Amazing or else Amazing is just a recolored Dark Matter later. If you want these to look nicer, you’ll need some gray paint for the handles. ^^;

Section 3.7: Dark Matter Booster AKA Mini-SID

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Quite a number of parts since this can be obtained separately. Do be careful with the “antennas”, they can break at the joint easily. Had to cement all 4 of them. Especially fragile if you accidentally move them at the joint accidentally (the small flat connection, not the ball joint connection). Otherwise, the rest of it is pretty sturdy~ =D

Section 3.8: Hands

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You’ll need the new closed hands to hold the swords properly as the sharp edges at the handle kinda hits the arms. Sometimes awesome looks have technical flaws.

Section 4: Let’s Stand Amazing! I mean-

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At first I thought it would be back heavy but it doesn’t seem to be a problem, similar to my original expectations with 00 Raiser. The articulation is exactly the same as Repair II and does not actually improve anything since HG Exia’s orginal release in that area. The swords at the sides will drop off easily so you might just leave them in the hands as they look cooler that way.

Section 5: Action!

Note: I took them at night without doing any proper lighting so lighting is very random.

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Overall it can look pretty nice but maybe with a little articulation update, it can pose better. Hopefully an MG comes out later since other Build Fighters Gunpla were MG-fied. I didn’t take many shots that night so I may update this section afterwards. Those familiar with the original HG Exia can imagine how many times I drop a part somewhere along the shots. =v

Section 6: Conclusion

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Overall it is a decent kit. I was disappointed with the cracks that occurred as I built it but fortunately a little bit of cement went a long way. I can still play around with the kit like I usually do although knowing those parts actually cracked made me feel some worry in handling. It would have been nice if Bandai did something more to this like what they did with the Strike but I guess that’s as far as they went for a Gunpla that appears for 1.5 episodes and a few more before it was modified like this. Honestly, I was hoping for more when it was announced but I guess that was impossible to happen. Maybe next time. I still haven’t built that RG Exia at least.

Pros

  • Slightly better part/color separation, though very minor
  • Quite sharp design and updates
  • Somehow cute backpack

Cons

  • No articulation update
  • Some (newer) parts cracks/breaks easily
  • Not Amazing

The following photos are photos of my friend’s Dark Matter that I played with before I got mine.

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Do be careful when handling some parts of this kit, it can be fragile at times but if you like it, don’t fret, a little cement fixes all those potential problems for you! Until the next post~

PS: May update with more photos if able.

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. Daryl Chiu permalink
    18/08/2014 6:39 pm

    Amazing Exia is out. Built one and for some odd reason, has better articulation. It uses the same mold with a few parts added in. And yes, Amazing Exia is much nicer to look at. :3

  2. 31/12/2014 11:12 am

    how you paint the ice sword ??

    • 23/03/2015 1:43 am

      That one was done by my friend (if you’re referring to the last two photos). It can be done with Gundam Markers but it won’t come out evenly if you do as such. Basically, you’ll need some paint. For painting needs, I think a quick Google search will tell you what you need to know. ^^

  3. Newbie permalink
    15/04/2015 1:29 am

    Once you used one of the faces, is it easy to change to the other one or you have to dissemble the head to change it?

    • 24/04/2015 11:54 pm

      You just need to switch the faceplate which needs a simple opening of the head parts.

  4. Excalibur permalink
    23/08/2015 9:38 pm

    I’m wondering, how do you attach the swords to the gunpla? Waist or legs?

    • 18/01/2016 6:17 pm

      Its attached to the legs so it can be a bit wonky to move around when you leave em’ there.

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