Blade Liger is one of the most popular Zoids in the franchise, and in spite of the popularity of New Century /ZERO in the united states, it has consistently ranked as more iconic to the series than the Liger Zero in polls that we've held. The Zoid features a high number of movable parts and many classic gimmicks, and is a must have for any collection!
Released: Mar 30th, 2000
Cost: 2200 Yen
Motor: x2 AAA Batteries
Caps: 24 (21 are used)
Length: 25.9 m
Height: 12.2 m
Weight: 124.0 t
Max Speed: 305 km/h
At the beginning of the year, northern Europa was once again finding a temporary peace due to the lacking supply lines of the Imperial Army. The Imperial Command hastened to reorganize its supply forces, preparing for an all-out attack, and dispatched their new Zoids, the Geno Saurer and Rev Raptor, which incorprated elements of the Organoid System, to the southwestern part of the continent. Their goal was to find and take control of newly discovered ancient ruins and obtain the complete Organoid System.
Of course, the Republican Army wasn't holding back, either. They pulled a battalion of Zoids from their strained ranks and sent them to defeat the Geno Saurer. However, the battalion was instantly destroyed by the terrifying performance of these new Zoids. The Republican Forces were at a loss.
There was a great sense of despair among the Republican HQ. At the time, data from the Organoid System had been brought back by the development bureau, and new Zoids equipped with the system were completed.
Blade Liger. Storm Sworder. The introduction of these two new units was about to change the power balance of both armies.
- Fuselage Explanation
In the midst of the repeated battles, the existing Zoids had already reached the limits of their abilities. Meanwhile, the Imperial Base Attack Force brought back data of the ancient civlization technology being used by the Imperial Army. Analysis of this data revealed that it was part of a program to improve the abilities and evolution of Zoids.
The Republic engineers, whose development costs had been reduced, experientally incorporated this data into a Shield Liger to complete the Blade Liger. Although it only had part of the system, its speed, strength, and combat power still exceeded any common sense, and the unit was reborn as a Zoid that required high piloting skills.
* Disclaimer: The translations on this page rely on google translate and may contain mistakes.
- Blade Liger Review
- First Impressions
One of the most iconic Zoids of the franchise, the Blade Liger is well renowned for its role in the first anime, Chaotic Century / Guardian Force. The model kit was even one of the first new kits released during the NJR wave. It was the first NJR Zoid to sport metal parts in its design (outside of the motor), with metal claws and teeth. This is something you notice immediately when you pick up the kit. The metal feels cold, and distinctly stands out. The metal claws were replaced with plastic for the overseas releases.
Are the metal claws good? Though this was an awesome inclusion, many weren't able to predict the degradation over time. The sintered metals of the claws are known to crumble. Sometimes, they break or snap, and sometimes they literally crumble into pieces. So if you're after one of these kits it's something to be aware of. Take note if you see what looks like a cracked paint layer in the surface, as it's one of the earlier signs.
A Wounded Blade Liger This guy was picked up in an auction from Japan, and already came with the decals applied. I considered taking them off, but honestly, I quite like how the previous owner applied them. Though he had a broken left cheek fin and a broken tail, his color was beautiful, and it was clear that the previous owner must've taken good care of the kit. Especially compared to the nearly-green sun-yellowed Blade Liger I'd picked up alongside it! I appreciated the inclusion of the extra parts, box, and instructions, as well.
Final Impressions Overall, the Blade Liger is a great kit. The colors are striking and there's a lot to tinker with. I always appreciate kits that have manually movable parts like the blades and E-Shield generators because it allows you to customize how your kits are displayed on the shelf. This is especially nice for things like the Blade Liger, where it's easy to end up housing a few of them. As the years go on though, it gets harder and harder to pick up motorized kits in good condition. Blade Liger is and always will be a classic worth getting regardless.
Pros: Metal claws and teeth are a unique bonus for the Tomy Blade Liger
Almost every armor piece has movable gimmicks
Additional parts allow you to customize to a small extent
Cons: At this age, many gear boxes are bound to be broken
Metal claws and teeth haven't aged well, and are known to crack or crumble
Long sweeping tails and face fins can be fragile, do not put under pressure
- Box Art
- Republic Spec.
We all know the Blade Liger's iconic design. Yet, when making a model kit, especially one that shares parts (after all, Blade Liger uses a Shield Liger body), it's cheaper to include extra, unnecessary parts than it is to pay for a new mold. Molds can add up to tens of thousands of dollars. Especially when you're talking about mass production grade molds that need to survive thousands of casts. Tomy took an innovative approach to this by including the parts of its predecessor, the Shield Liger, as an alternative 'Republic Spec.' Alternate parts that allowed children to customize their Zoid without needing the technical knowledge of older customizers was a selling point brought up in new product announcements of the time.
The instruction manual tells you which parts to include (the top mane generator and the tail), but you can even install the Shield Liger's gun in place of the boosters. The silhouette with the parts looks quite streamlined around the mane, which flows more naturally into the back armor.
- Additional Figures
The RZ-028 Blade Liger comes with several additional figures! They're attached to a sprue to start with. You get a seated Bang (Van) and Fine (Fiona) figure, as well as standing versions. Bang can stand on his own, if the surface is even, but Fine's hair puts too much weight to the left side so she topples over. Sieg doesn't fall over, but is weighted backwards so leans on his tail instead of standing flat on his feet. The figure is cute though, and these guys were released with other Blade Liger variants because they hadn't done any 'parts swaps' that necessitated them being removed.
- Motorized Features In Action
The cockpit opens up with the small blue piece at the back, which is quite neat. We're all used to the deep orange canopy look for the Blade Liger, but the motorized kit actually leans closer to yellow. The model comes with a seated Bang and Fine mini figure (unpainted), so it can look like the Blade Liger from the anime!
- Face Fins
Each side of the mane can extend outwards. Something about this part is just particularly fragile, though. There's a vertical bar connecting each fin, and it's prone to snapping in half when inserting it into the head, so be careful.
- E-Shield Generators
The E-Shield Generators on the top and bottom of the mane can extend forward as well, each with a unique design.
- Completion Refrigerators
The Completion Refrigerators on the tops of the legs, which are meant to cool the Zoid down in combat can extend outwards, giving the Bladey a bit of a 'puff up' for cooler poses.
- Laser Blades
The Laser Blades have a variety of positions thanks to their multi-jointed blade arm. They typically rest over the back, but can flip forward above the shoulders for a firing position (they have pulse laser rifles on the back.) They can also extend outwards to the sides, and from the deployed position, can still face forwards or backwards. Some media depicts the blades extended half way, in a diagonal position to improve aerodynamics.
- Rocket Boosters
The Rocket Boosters take the place of the Shield Liger's AMD Beam Gun. It uses the same type of forwards-backwards rotating joint, except instead of the armor on top of it being a separate, disconnected piece, the Blade Liger's armor has a rail that the boosters hook into. This makes the boosters extend outwards and upwards as the armor plate lifts up.
The tail extends far behind the Blade Liger and can be rotated up and down. However, such a long piece with no reinforcement makes it quite fragile. You'll often see this part broken in built lots.