Posted by : milky kou Sunday, October 9, 2016

One question I tend to get a lot is what grade is this kit, or what scale is this other kit in when people come to look at my gunpla collection, or when someone is asking what should I start with as my first gunpla. Well Today Im going to explain the difference in scales and grades and what the differences between all of them are.

Bandai that has manufactured gunpla has set the standard for categorizing difficult and size in 2 ways that other companies like kotobukiya uses- Scale and grade.

Grade determines the complexity of the kit as well as the amount of parts and runners on the kit, as well as the amount of details on it. While most grades have a standard scale with them, there are a few that defy this logic but they are few and far in between. Bandai has also streamlined the grades to 2 letter abbreviations so that you know what type of kit it is from the box itself.

Sd: Super deformed kits are made to look like tiny robots in small cute sized packages. These models tend to be the cheapest and smallest, as well as having the least amount of plastic quality, articulation and details. These require stickers and lots of paint to make color accurate, and tend to come with 2-4 runners.

SDEX: SD ex standard is a new line of SD kits released as of late 2015 that are of the same size as normal SD kits, but come with the benefit of more articulation and the gimmick of weapons able to be combined with their HG counterparts.
HG: High grades are the most common gunpla kits around. This line started in 1990 as bandais most complex models and has gone through several revisions throughout the years. This line has the most variety of kits of all the grades. If a mech exists in the gundam universe, it will be in the HG line (with some exceptions) These models need some paint to make anime accurate, but have a wider range of movement compared to SD kits. Today they are not considered complex and are great for starters.

RG: Real grade kits are a line of kits started in 2010 to bring the detail of the master grade kits to the HG audience. These kits feature a inner skeleton to offer more possibility than their regular HG counterparts while featuring more details and decals equivalent to their MG counter parts. These kits don't tend to be harder than high grade, but smaller parts can be a bit trickier to handle.

RE: REBORN 1/100 kits were first introduced in 2014 with the Nightingale Kit from Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack - Beltorchika's Children. A side story that had this and hi nu gundam instead of the regular sazabi and nu kits. While not as many kits are in this category, it does help bring out kits that are too obscure, too large, or too expensive to have become full master grade kits. The outer detail of the kits are that of a MG while the parts themselves are that of high grade in complexity, leading to large parts for assembly. This is a good in between for master grade and High grade.

MG: Master grade kits are intricate kits released in 1995 that are in 1/100 scale, introducing screws and metal parts to bring them closer to life. These kits tend to be in the middle range of price from $30 to about $100 depending on the kit and amount of plastic. Kits in this line tend to have 1-2 variations in the HG line before they get a master grade, or are a evolution of older MG kits from before. These also tend to get the most exclusive kits and variants than any other line, known as pbandai that are only released once. These kits need very little painting to make anime accurate and offer some of the best flexibility of any kit, even with articulated fingers on the kits.

PG: Perfect grade kits are the most accurate and most expensive kits you will ever see and purchase. Introduced in 1997 with the evangelion test type suit before moving to gunpla exclusively, these kits tend to have a significant amount of internal and external parts, metal parts and light up gimmicks. All pg kits also get Pbandai variants and exclusive, and even expansion packs for the kits. Perfect grade kits have sometimes been used to create MG and even RG kits. These kits are the most expensive but worth the price and effort to put together.

NG: No grade kits tend to have low quality plastic in their construction and tend to be on much older kits, or 1/100 kits that are not MG. This is also used for non bandai kits though for others they can be of high quality plastic depending on the company.

Scale determines the size of the kit as it would measure up in terms of its Real life counterpart. Scale however is not always determined by grade as most people think. Scale is just a representation of the size of the kit, not its difficulty or parts.

1/144: The normal scale for kits, these tend to be reserved for HG and RG kits. The size of these kits tend to be around the size of a small paper cup (though there are a few exceptions). This scale can also be used on mobile armor suits that are too big to make in any other scale (the most famous being the neo zeong and the Dendrobium.

1/100: This scale is seen on all MG kits and RE kits. Some HG kits and no grade kits are in this scale as well, most notably older kits from the early 00s and 90s. These kits tend to be about the size of your average anime figure or the size of a small book.

1/60: A Kit of this size tends to be about as big as a small house cat. These kits are almost exclusively reserved for PG but from time to time HG and no grade kits can reach this size.

No scale: Kits in this scale may not be 100% accurate in proportion to their rl counterparts or are difficult or in a different scale that can not be put in the normal scales. This does not determine the quality of the plastic, but can tend to be in the NG quality. SD kits are exclusive to this scale.

There is a new line of kits that started getting release as of 2016 known as Figure raise busts that are bust model kits of characters from the gundam franchise, notably the pilots of said mobile suits. The figure raise type kits have been around for a longer time for things like dragon ball z starwars and other media though their scales tend to range from 1/20 to 1/8.

A comparison of the difference between the 3 major grades.

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