Updated: Jan 15, 2022
Touring Tokyo and a Journey through Japan-- these are two books I have written about my travels in Japan. Check these out!!!
Historically, in 1853, お台場 Odaiba, Japan, was formerly a fort that constantly provided strong protection for Tokyo against enemy vessels. The Japanese name お台場 Odaiba, which translates as “fort” in English, reveals the historical significance of the great city. Later on though, sea ports were created in Odaiba. As technology increased, the city became commercialized and thus transformed into a popular scenic vacation spot.
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Odaiba is located on a beautiful artificial island in the city of Tokyo. Odaiba is notorious for its shopping areas, colorful rainbow bridge, statue of liberty, and many other landmarks. The city is also very famous for winter illuminations.
Despite all these landmarks, usually when people think of Odaiba, they are drawn immediately to the Gundam Robot. Standing at an astounding 19.7 meters or 64.6 feet, and weighing an unbelievable 43.4 tons, the towering and mammoth anime Gundam (which is located adjacent to the Diver’s City mall) has garnered much media attention as well as attracted an influx of tourists from all over the world. The previous Gundam robot, the RX-87, was featured in the prominent 1979 anime series called “The Gundam Suit.” However, on September 24, 2017, the Gundam was replaced with the RX-0 robot. This current robot is approximately 1.7 meters taller than the former robot.
The position of the Gundam robot is very unique and pertinent. Considering the fact the robot was meticulously placed in the center of the entire island of Odaiba represents the robot’s amazing power and status. It is as if the Gundam is entrusted with the responsibility of defending the entire island from enemy attacks or threats. Whether by land or by sea, to the Gundam, the enemies would appear as diminutive ants, which would not stand a chance against the Gundam. For those who are not familiar with the Gundam and especially the 1979 anime series, the humans pilot and control the robots.
The Gundam is vigilantly guarding the entrance to the Diver’s City mall.
When you compare yourself to this robot, you realize that you are like a small ant. This thought is not only terrifying (if the gundam was an enemy to you) but also mind blowing as well. You can observe the boosters on the back of the robot.
The transformation of the Gundam, which altered from unicorn mode to destroy mode, was an incredible spectacle. The day transformation occurs at the following times: (1) 0900 a.m., (2) 11:00 a.m., (3) 1 p.m., and (4) 3 p.m. When the transformation transpired, the unicorn on the head of the gundam suddenly and gradually split, therefore portraying that of the helmet of a samurai. Samurais have experienced a rich history in Japan, especially during the Edo period (1603-1867). In fact, when you study the life of a samurai, you find that he was typically an elite and loyal warrior who assisted in defeating battles. The “elite” and “conquering” status can be ascribed to the Gundam.
The Gundam is in “unicorn” mode.
The Gundam is in “destroy” mode.
Not only did the unicorn head move, but the massive armor plates, back, arms, and shoulders shifted as well. During the transformation process, 50 parts on the Gundam moved.
While observing the Gundam performance at night, I was captivated by the pulsating florescent green, yellow, reddish pink, and purple glow that resonated from the robot. Along with the various colors (which changed about every 20-30 seconds) on the robot, there was also the spewing of mist from the chest of the robot. As you watched the transformation unfold, it appeared as if the Gundam was coming to life and that he would be walking all over Odaiba any minute. This appearance was noticeable by the Gundam’s illuminating eyes. Though this robot does not walk around, I foresee this being a new future engineering project in Japan.
The transformation of the Gundam was remarkable. The pictures below show the green, yellow, red, and purple colors on the robot.
The Gundam transformed into a green looking robot.
The closer view of the green robot.
The Gundam changed into a yellow looking robot.
A closer view of the yellow robot.
The Gundam transformed into a pinkish red looking robot.
The closer view of the pinkish red robot.
The Gundam changed into a purple looking robot.
Despite the awesome transformation of the Gundam during the day, I would argue that the transformation of the robot at night is the best time to view for two reasons. First, the bright and dazzling colors resonating off of the Gundam are much more vivid at night. Secondly, when you observe the Gundam at night, the robot seems much more real and bigger for some reason. Keep in mind, the Gundam robot is about the same height of the trees next to it. When you compare the height of a tree to the Gundam, you are baffled and taken aback. I certainly was mesmerized by this scene. The destroy mode on the Gundam at night graphically depicted the dire reality of the Gundam at the verge of conquering his enemies. Another difference that can be observed at the night transformation is there is a short video being played. The night transformation during the winter time occurs at 5 p.m., (usually dark by this time in the winter), 7:30 p.m- 9:30 p.m. The night transformation transpires every 30 minutes.
While reflecting upon the Gundam, I noticed the intricate details of this magnificent robot. The designing of this magnificent Gundam is credited to a brillant Japanese engineer named Kunio Okawara.
Having conducted significant research on the Gundam robots, I have found the newer models have become increasingly detailed and complex. When you compare the RX 78-2 and the RX-0, for instance, you can noticeably recognize a keen difference. One of them being (as pointed out) the newer Gundam is the taller than its predecessor.
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