Like all series reviews this will be spoiler free, however if there are spoilers it will be clearly marked.
Gundam is still a new concept to me. But when you think Gundam what mostly comes to mind is the concept of war, robots fighting, and after watching one or two, the internal struggle that comes with the main characters. This is different, it focuses on the idea of Gundam Models, or Gunpla as the series calls it, and the battles with the models.
Like all Gundam Series it comes from Studio Sunrise. In North America it is licensed by Sunrise and can be found currently for legal streaming on the official Gundam Youtube Channel.
The story takes place where the 1980s was a huge success of Mobile Suite Gundam brought forth an economic boom for Gundam Model kits. In recent years’ technological advances allowed tournaments called Gunpla Battles to be established throughout the world where the Gunpla can fight. The series fallows Sei Iori and Reiji at team as they want to become world champions. Along their tough battles secrets of the technology of the Gunpla battles start to come to light which may bring forth even more challenges to them.
I watched this on a whim, and although I thought at first that it was just going to be a 50-episode commercial for the Gunpla, it was mostly that. Build Fighters is the first season and only consists of 25 episodes. Season two follows different characters and may be covered at a later day. Yet, although it was clear that the ideas of building Gundam models was relevant, it also said a lot about the importance of the franchise.
The battles and most episodes can turn into a battle to end the episode. The later half of the season a majority of the episode becomes battles. However, although it is a common trait in Gundam series to have robots fight this series is different. It has more comedy and is much more light hearted than previous Gundams (as far as I know and seen, I may be wrong).
This may add to the fact that battles are not meant to be as serious, there is no life and death. One of the characters even say this. Gunpla battles are meant to be fun. Seeing scenes like the arms of the Gundam’s fall out because the piece was not properly attached, or having stuffing come out because a character thought that would be a good idea to put into their models adds to it.
If you are looking to get into Gundam, this feels like an inappropriate place to begin. For me it was the third, but first I completed. Due to the nature of it being much more different compared to other Gundams, it gives it a sense of being unique, but at a tricky place too.
Overall the characters are fun. Each one plays a role and gives some importance, be it if they have a minor role as a side character at the start or plays a somewhat villain role. Each are given a similar amount of character development allowing them to be seen more than just being plain or minor characters.
Animation stays consistent throughout. There are no glaring issues in that department. Music, when noticed (since I can sometimes not pay attention to background music or remember it), it was their sometimes, and this was mostly in larger fights when it became clear.
If you are still new into Gundam, and are looking for something light-hearted or are not planning on getting into Gundam but want a light hearted series with fights and an anime where a tournament arc actually finishes, this show may be for you.
Overall Score: B
Overall Personal Enjoyment: A
Other Gundam Series I have Seen: Iron Blooded Orphans and Unicorn.
As always I hope you enjoyed.
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Again, I hope you enjoyed and see you next time.