Bandai 1/144 HG MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral]

The MS-04 Bugu is a mobile suit featured in the Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin series. It is developed by Zeon from the YMS-03 Waff in U.C. 0077. The Bugu is piloted by Ramba Ral before he is assigned the infamous “this is no Zaku, boy!” MS-07B Gouf.

The development of the mobile suit took a huge step forward thanks to the compact fusion reactor and fluid pulse system designed by Dr. Torenov Y. Minovsky, resulting in the development of the prototype YMS-03 Waff. The MS-04 Bugu was completed using data gathered with the Waff, and it was designed with a focus on its mobility, manoeuvrability, and ease of production as a Mobile Suit weapon, thus making this the first machine capable of handling genuine combat.

Bandai 1/144 HG MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral]

To improve its mobility, the power pipes that transmitted energy as part of the fluid pulse system were attached to the outside of its armour, and the increased supply of the energy used to drive its limb joints gave it very high manoeuvrability. However, as is often the case in the development of high-performance prototypes, it was designed with no regard for ease of production.

With its high production cost, it was unsuited for mass production, and the role of official mass-produced machine was given to the redesigned MS-05 Zaku I. Though the Bugu never entered mass production it has been assigned as a personal MS for Ramba Ral. It was painted in his blue personal colours, and attached to the head of Ramba’s suit was a blade antenna, symbolic of the commander.

The High Grade MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral] is a Bandai 1/144 scale kit released in early Dec 2016. It is relatively new kit and the kits from origin storyline are produced using new moulding; but it still uses polycaps, but it has a lot more articulation to allow more dynamic posing when compared to the older HG versions.

The retail price for this kit is about ¥1,870 which is more expensive than the MS-06S Char Zaku 2 at ¥1,700; especially the Origin Zaku 2 kit is one of the best HG Zaku 2 kit and has a lot more surface details for panel lining, and comes with lots of parts options and a unique belt feed machine gun.

Accessories are really limited for such an expensive kit; it only comes with a machine gun, shield, heat Hawk, heat Hawk (storage state), trigger hand (right), open palm (left), and weapons holding hands (left and right).

Bandai 1/144 HG MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral]

I have submitted my Bandai 1/144 HG MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral] into ZakuAurelius Clean vs Weathered Competition 2021. ChrisPabz is one of the judges of the competition and on his YouTube channel he gave me some really positive constructive comments and also many things which I can improve on! Check it out on timestamp 16:31.

Take a look at his other videos and if you like send him your WIPs or build for him to review; check out his Instagram bio for the link to send in your photos and follow him!

That said, Bandai 1/144 HG MS-04 Bugu [Ramba Ral] kit is such a difficult kit to find online when I am writing this blog. Hence it is only by chance that I saw this in stock in GalacticToys and I knew straight away that I will be buying this kit.

“This is no Zaku, Boy!!” and yes that is true to a sense as it does not have much of a Zaku likeness. That is the main reason why I really like this design. It is different and yet not too quirky. My plan is to customise this Bugu such that has that beta version look that inspired a Gouf. Or in a way I was inspired by post-apocalyptic “Mad Max” or “Fist of North Stars” biker gang helmet with shoulder spikes! Hence I will be am calling my kit-bashed Bugu “The BUtcher!” swinging a huge Buster sword.

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For those who have been following my blog for a while will know that I tend to pre-shade my kits; it is not an easy method when working on a small HG scale hence the shading are not as clean as some of others finished MG projects. My favourite blue which I tend to use most is Vallejo Medium Blue, it is such a versatile colour that a little white will give is a nice pastel like blue and a little grey will give it a tired dark blue.

I also tend to use jewel beads stickers for the eyes and scope for the Zeon Mobile Suits, if you position your lights and flash correctly, you will usually get a bright reflective glow which looks just like an LED but less bright and no hassle of wires and batteries.

The BUtcher is a mobile suit specialises is multiple weapons especially in close combat style hence the daggers, axes and sword. It is like a post-apocalypse gladiator! The spiked shields also give the Bugu 360 protection just like a Roman Shield Wall Formation.


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My customised Bugu looks a lot wider and “muscular” compared to my Ramba’s Custom and Char’s Custom Zaku 1.

The Bugu looks slightly shorter when compared to the Origin RX-78 but the wide shoulder and menacing presence easily makes this one of my favourite kit so far.