Mark Simmons (
Sat, 13 Nov 1999 19:25:06 -0800

Nightingale points out,

>Hmm... in the opening of episode 7, when Zeon's Yuri
>Kerane and his soldiers were retreating from Odessa, 2
>units of GM Ground Types + Type 61 tanks were
>approaching their bases, so they were indeed used for
>other frontlines as well.

  My mistake! I misremembered those as regular GMs with [G] type shields,
rather than [G] type GMs with regular shields. Maybe I was thinking of
the Odessa cut scene from Giren's Greed. So yes, we do have some
pre-production GMs at Odessa, plus at least two used as snipers during
the assault on Ginias's Tibetan base at the end of 08th MS Team.

>How many were made? I'll made an educational guess: less than fifty.

  The MSV-era figure of 42 units is starting to sound pretty good to me.
And I can even make a flimsy argument for this figure including only [G]
types, not [E] types, since these 42 early units were produced at Jaburo
- the [E] type that Sanders is testing could have been made at Luna Two.

Neil Baumgardner asks,

>Okay, I think I need some context here. How many total MS are we talking
>about on either side? Ie, how many Fed MS in the OYW and how many Zeon MS.
>Also, if known, how many Fed MS are there around 0083 (of course we already
>roughly know how many Delaz had). Or even how many MS are we talking about in

  That's a controversial topic. Most of the MS battles we see in later
series are on a much smaller scale, involving fleets of around a dozen
ships and about a hundred mobile suits. Delaz has 15 ships and around a
hundred mobile suits, Char has 14 ships and 85 mobile suits. The AEUG has
8 ships for its Jaburo assault, and the dialog indicates they drop 80
mobile suits, though the number shown on-screen and the capacity of the
ships would indicate that 40 mobile suits is more like it.

  For base assaults, a battalion of mobile suits (30-50 units) is a
common size. The Kojima Battalion uses all 24 of its mobile suits to
attack Ginias's base, plus a fleet of bombers, and the Zeons drop 40-odd
mobile suits on Jaburo during the One Year War (of which only 28 make it
to the ground in one piece).

Where the total forces on both sides during the One Year War are
concerned, it gets trickier. Entertainment Bible 39 gave detailed tallies
of the ships and mobile suits used in each major battle, but their
figures are totally and completely out of whack. For example, they claim
that some 8800 mobile suits fought at the Battle of Solomon...

  More reasonably, there are some long-established figures we can use as
yardsticks. Varying numbers have been given for the production run of the
Zaku II, but 3200 is the most common cited (of which more than half were
the familiar F type). On the Federation side, 1200 Balls were used during
Operation Star One; Balls seem to make up fully half the Federation
forces during Operation Star One, so we probably have an equal number of
GMs, plus however many were used on Earth and elsewhere in space.

So, on balance, production runs in the hundreds and thousands seem
typical. Zeon supposedly cranked out 800 Zaku I and 3200 Zaku II units,
and presumably a thousand or more of its subsequent types (Goufs, Doms,
Gelgoogs, amphibious MS). The Federation, with its immense industrial
capability, produced well over a thousand GMs and about 1200 Balls in the
last few months of the war.

-- Mark

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