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[ROBOT魂] Fafner Mark Sieben

December 8, 2012

“What makes you any different… from the Festum?”

Toomi Maya, Fafner of the Azure: Dead Aggressor

As far as impulsive purchases go, the Fafner Mark Sieben is one of my odder choices in the Robot Spirits Line. For one thing, it was pretty expensive when I bought it (at about S$70+) and while it comes with a few unique accessories, the model kit only truly shines when paired with the Robot Spirits Mark Sein. Not to mention I put off writing up about the Mark Sieben because of that; I actually bought it at AFA 2011, and was hoping to snag a Mark Sein at AFA 2012 to make the set complete. Alas for long-term assumptions.

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Yes… I’m sorry… everything is actually part of only one set…

Ignoring my lack of posting about model kits again, here we go.

Armaments:

– “Dragon’s Tooth” Sniper Rifle x1

– “Durandal” Sidearm x1 (Not shown)

Fist Guards x2

Summary:

 A Fafner model introduced late into the series, the Mark Sieben’s (VII) predecessor model was the Mark Sechs (VI) piloted by Shouko Hazama, complete with a similar design and the unique flight capability that separated it from other Fafner Models. Piloted by Tōmi Maya, the Mark Sieben’s forte was at ranged warfare, and to that aspect the deadly combination of Maya’s impeccable accuracy and the unstoppable firepower of the Dragon’s Tooth Sniper Rifle was responsible for the destruction of many Festum forms.

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Alien Fight Night!

First off we’ll have some punches… eh maybe not. Most of the Nothung Fafners featured in the show (those built by the protagonist’s side) have a last-ditch melee attack whereby protectors slide over their fists before they punch. On the RD Mark Sieben you get to swap out its normal gauntlets for the ones with covers deployed, but it makes the hand parts more difficult to put in. You might have to push and swear for a while to get the Sieben to pose like a boxer.

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The biggest stick fielded.

It is a very weird purchase for me. I usually shy away from designs I don’t like, and even those I like aren’t necessarily on my wish list because of their complete lack in the expected number of gimmicks and accessories they have. Then again having a Fafner model is a very good insight into unconventional mechanical surface design because their design philosophy is closer to “maximum mobility” rather than “humanoid effect”.

As you can see, the joints of a Fafner model are at diagonal angles. This makes for some weird poses, but the RD Fafner Mark Sieben (and most of the other Fafners too I’ll wager) come with at least two to three joints per limb. High kicks, sweep kicks, knees (well this one might be more difficult) and other fascination poses you can come up with can be replicated in here. Radha Bairaban would have loved being a Fafner pilot.

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They say pictures make peoples’ asses look fat. I’d say pictures don’t lie without basis…

Fafner back view, which you can see is just as skeletal as the front. It’s not so much of the haphazard design’s lack of cohesion… rather I think it was the lack of cohesion that attracted my hand. Too bad the RD’s a bit on the flimsy side, but it’s nothing too serious.

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Where is the charging handle on this thing…?

The Dragon’s Tooth is Maya’s weapon of choice in both the original Fafer of the Azure: Dead Aggressor and its direct sequel, Fafner: HEAVEN AND EARTH (don’t ask me why it’s in caps). Given that the only other two weapons in the show with any consistent kill rates are the Ruga Lance and Garm .44 automatic rifle, Maya’s default weapon, the sniper rifle, is almost godlike. Downs Festums in one shot and doesn’t afraid of anything; engaging Festums up close just leads to bad things, and like all automatic weapons in fiction the Garm .44 is prone to failing when the plot demands it.

And as you can see kneeling firing is not a problem for our magenta yoga-bot. I swear some of the ways the joints turn are just insane.

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Rejoice honey, we’re having duck tonight!

The Mark Sieben comes with an extra kneeguard that you can swap out for one of the normal ones; it’s special in that it’s painted with the Roman numerals of VII, which is the Mark Sieben’s number. The Sieben gets this special treatment along with the other Fafners it accompanies during the final episodes of the original series when humanity attacks the Festum at their stronghold in the Arctic.

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On second thoughts, let’s settle for bull.

The RD Sieben comes with a part that mimics the rifle’s stabilizing part being extended; hence the name Dragon’s Tooth. It would be very useful in dioramas.

One part about the Mark Sieben is the awkward firing positions you might have to deal with sometimes. Its arm design doesn’t mix well with the design of the Dragon Tooth’s rifle stock, but with those arms and joints, something’ll work out.

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… Or maybe rabbits…

Well this pose is more troublesome. Unlike its depiction in HEAVEN AND EARTH, the RD Sieben doesn’t have much to show off when it comes to tilting its neck. It still turns left and right well enough though.

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Aha! We hunt eagles now!

This is the fully equipped Sieben. I didn’t really want to pose it with the backpack because of the fragility; the two holds you saw in the back view of the Sieben are all that’s keeping the flight wings from dropping off, and given the dynamism of certain poses the wings are going to be all over the place in a mess. You also have to note that the wings are rather heavy by themselves and depending on how you handle them, they might become a pain in the ass if they keep dropping or sliding out of position.

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C’mon, hurry up, the birds are going south.

With wings spread, it’s one hell of a majestic pose just standing, though.

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Now, where is the lever for this… hm, “full blast”?

A few redundant pointy bits here and there like some old-school shmup fighter, but it’s got variable-geometry tailfins and that’s cool.

Besides it’s a fucking giant robot backpack, I aint gotta explain shit. If Fukuda got away with it I don’t see why not here.

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Hello, avian friends! Mind one of you joining my dinner table tonight?

This reminds me, I need to get a Master Gundam one of these days. That old fogey’s ride is just to awesome to pass up.

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Owah! Ow! No, wait, this is negotiable – Ouch!

And some random martial arts pose as is customary.

One thing about those flight packs is that they’re not meant to bend forward. You’re not going to get anything resembling Justice or Infinite Justice here, and the backpack is actually blocked by the design of the shoulders.

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Forget hunting the gentleman’s way, let’s use the Insta-Roaster 9000 instead!

The Mark Sieben armed with its Cannon of FUCK OFF that it gained in episode 26.

If you remember the green crystal in the opening post picture, that probably has something to do with the cannon attachment. It originally came about as a result of the Mark Sein, Kazuki’s unit, temporarily fusing its arms with the Mark Sieben and its Dragon’s Tooth to turn it from a shell-firing sniper into what is basically their equivalent of a mega beam launcher. Too bad I still can’t find the Mark Sein…

Verdict:

Well, all in all if you judge the Mark Sieben by its own merits, the unit isn’t that bad. It’s got good flexibility, good design accuracy, and you have to be pretty mad if you’re buying this without knowing what a Fafner is or not liking some aspect of its design enough to ignore the former point.

The problem, then, stems from the fact that the Mark Sieben is in canon a very specialized unit. Unlike the other Nothung Fafners that regularly swap equipment around, the Mark Sieben is stuck in flight-capable mode all the time. No shoulder Aegis shield, no beam cannons, Fafner finger, Ruga Lance, Garm .44, or other manners of cool weapons you see in the PSP games or somesuch. Not even the Mine Blade or the drones controlled by Tatsumiya Island’s core.

That’s a lot of missed potential for merchandising; given that I’ve only ever seen the Mark Elf, Mark Sein and Mark Sieben on sale, only the Mark Elf has the potential to equip all of the above, but that shouldn’t have been a stopping point for Bandai to spread the merchandising over three models even if two aren’t suited to use most of the extra stuff. I mean, they did it with the Zaku II, there really wasn’t a reason for them to skip it here.

Get the Sieben if you must, but don’t expect much in the way of cool shit unless the Fafner series in general get more recognition.

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2 comments

  1. Thats a nice hunk of tiberium in the first pic. XD


  2. Wait ’til you see the other chunk from the Mark Sein kit.



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