Kit review: HGUC 1/144 – Jesta

Kit Reviews

Grunt suits always hold a special place in a mecha fan’s hearts. Furthermore, grunt suits but are more “advanced” and actually look intimidating are even more awesome. When Gundam first started, the GM was the default firework machines along with the Zakus, then came the Jegan with a more sophisticated design but still quite simple in CCA. It is in Unicorn that we get the ultimate Federation Grunt suits of all time: the Jesta – a commando-like MS that looks amazing both when kicking ass and when exploding.

– Info: 
HGUC 1/144 Jesta
Series: Mobile Suit Gundam 0079
Price: 1,760 yen
Release date: Sept, 2011
Order your Jesta here.

– Design: At first glance, if you think this MS looks like Master Chief – then congratulations, you hit the nail on the head. The GM Spartan was the inspiration for Halo’s protagonist, and the Jesta is the ultimate evolution of the GM/Jegan/Jesta line. The suit looks super militaristic and tacticool. Katoki did a very good job putting straight edges onto the Jegan – which is a very curvy design and make it look more suited for urban warfare. You can say if the Jegan is for the army, then the Jesta is for Spec-Ops – which they are.

– Build quality: The build is pretty simple and straightforward – as usual with Bandai. Stickers are also kept to a minimum, mostly for the visor and the weapon’s optics. There are some pretty small parts with pretty annoying gates that require some care when processing them. Thankfully most of the kit are dark navy so a Gundam Marker can fix it up like new and noone will notice anything.

– Articulation: Even though it is kit number 130 in the HGUC line, the Jesta isn’t the best acrobat on the block. True to its nature as grunt suits (Spec-Ops but still), they are quite bricky when it comes to articulation. The arms have high movement range but the feet and hips are quite limited, so there’s not much dynamic posability. However, it can still pull off solid poses that soldiers usually made. If you have multiples, you can definitely create a very tacticool scene.

– Gimmicks: The only gimmick worthy of mentioning on the kit is the shoulder shield. It is attached to the backpack and has pretty good articulation thanks to movable joints on the sub-arm.

– Accessories:  This HGUC comes with only 2 armaments:

x 1 Custom Beam Rifle
x 1 Missile shield: the shield has 2 two-tube missile pods but no effect parts (of course)
x 1 Beam Saber
x 2 weapon-holding hands
x 1 trigger hand (for the right arm)
x 2 closed-fist hands
x 2 open-palm hands

While the accessories isn’t much, the kit is compatible with many weapons (see galleries), so you can easily recreate a spec-ops themed or military-themed MS with some simple option packs or weapons from other kits. I recommend the 30MM weapon packs, Bandai’s 21st century weapon and Koto’s MSGs.

–> Overall: This is a very basic kit but full of potential. The sleek design and spec-ops aesthetic is very suitable for a squad build. The amount of customization is also very high for a cheap and affordable price. The articulation isn’t the best but for a “soldier” type unit, this is quite adequate. Definitely recommend if you’re grunt suit fan.

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