Preview: 1/72 Hasegawa VF-25F/S Messiah

Kit Info
Manufacturer: Hasegawa
Scale: 1/72
Media: Injection
Price: 2,720 JPY at Hobby Search

The Subject
The VF-25 Messiah is one of the latest variable fighters used by humans in 2059. It was developed as a replacement for the VF-171, the standard variable fighter in the New UN Spacy. Production prototypes were fielded by SMS in 2059, during Macross Frontier fleet’s voyage into the center of the Milky Way.

Like previous variable fighters, the VF-25 can transform between 3 forms. Unique to other models though, is the EX-Gear power armor integrated into the cockpit which reduces the burden on the pilot during extreme maneuvers. With the addition of various modules, the VF-25 can be configured for multiple missions. The VF-25 is also the first variable fighter to be able to transform without having to eject its armored pack (unlike the VF-1).

Info adapted from Macross Wiki.

The Kit
Unlike Bandai’s release a few years ago, this kit is only modeled in fighter mode. Consequently, I think captures it the look of the Messiah better. The kit comes in the bigger sized box in the vein of the VF-0 kits. As usual with Hasegawa, the box is way bigger than what’s needed and also as usual with Hasegawa, everything but the clear parts are shoved into one big plastic bag which probably caused 2 parts to have fallen off the sprue straight out of the box.

Features of the kit:

  • Separate parts for open or closed canopy
  • Co-pilot seat included as option
  • Armaments! A total of 18 missiles are included besides the gun pod
  • Option for open or closed wings
  • Option for gear up or down

I like this: separate parts for open or closed canopy. This means less fiddling around to make the open parts fit closed. A lot of itty bitty clear parts are also included to stick onto various parts of the kit.

I find that the panel lines are finer and the parts are more detailed than previous releases. The molding also looks crisper although this may be due to my kit being from the first run. We’ll see how it goes as Hasegawa invariably milks the mold for the other VF-25 versions.

I like how a co-pilot seat is included as an option but it sure will be great if a passenger figure was too. Looks odd empty if you used the included pilot upfront. Plus, where are you going to find another Macross Frontier era figure besides buying a new VF-25 kit?

Hasegawa has finally given the modeler the option of modeling the kit in flight or on the ground in the form of separate parts. So you don’t have to wrestle to close the gear doors that are meant to be in the open position. Nice.

While the main body is molded in white, quite a few parts are molded in gray for some reason.  These tend to be the parts that are very detailed although I’m not sure that has do with the color used.

The exhausts are thankfully designed to be able to be assembled and painted separately before being installed.

Interestingly, the VF-25’s hands aren’t retracted in fighter mode.

The armament includes the underbelly GU-17 gatling gun pod which oddly includes the hand grip. The kit is capable of being modeled carrying 3 triple missile racks on each wing for a total of 18 missiles to kick Vajra ass. Seriously overkill but seriously bad ass.

Markings-wise, you are given 2 options:

  1. Alto’s VF-25F
  2. Ozma’s VF-25S

Conclusion
What can I say? It’s a Hasegawa. It’s very nicely molded although with the many parts, there will probably be some fiddly parts fitting like most of the brand’s latest releases. I really like the inclusion of the missiles and I hope Hasegawa will keep doing this from now on. The inclusion of co-pilot seat is nice although it’ll be better if it came with a co-pilot figure.

Still, it’s a welcome entry into the 1/72 Macross model kits as I find the Bandai kit seriously over-engineered: so much so I threw it back into its box and stored it away after I was done snap-fitting it.

I’m sure many more variants will be released in no time: Michel’s VF-25G, Luca’s RVF-25, VF-25 with Super Pack, VF-25 with Armored Pack and VF-25 with Tornado Pack. Can’t wait.

Preview courtesy of my wallet

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