Mark Simmons (
Wed, 22 Mar 2000 14:10:45 -0800

Tet writes,

> Of course it is possible that they started working on an improved
> version of Gundam at the given
> date and newtype(Amuro) customization and the name was added later in
> development.

  Makes sense to me. Probably the Augusta development team just started
working on an improved Gundam (since it's supposed to be the fourth Gundam
unit, it may have been based on one of the spare RX-78-1 units left over at
Jaburo), and once it became apparent that they had a possible newtype at
their disposal, the project was redirected towards this goal. This wouldn't
have been until October or November, methinks.

> Shalia only just returned from Jupiter in ep 39 and also he was under Giren's
> command so it's unlikely he had anything to do with NT testing and such before
> he was ordered by Giren. Even though Giren outwardly didn't have any faith in
> newtypes he obviously knew/suspected that Shalia was one.

  At the very least, he expected _Kishiria_ to think he was one. ;-)

> The Braubro was built and were undergoing testing before Lalah first appeared.

  Right - at first, it's crewed by a bunch of non-newtype technicians, who
use computer backup to control the wired beam cannons. But you couldn't
operate the Elmeth's wireless bits without a genuine newtype at the helm.

  Otherwise, I think you're probably right about the scarcity of Zeon
newtypes. While it was quite common for people to speculate about various
ace pilots being newtypes, the fact that the Flanagan Agency entrusted these
super-expensive war machines to a spooky girl and a transport-ship captain
fresh off the boat from Jupiter (and a probable spy, to boot) makes it
pretty clear that they didn't have any other qualified candidates. Picking
Char to operate the Zeong during the final battle was probably just a luck

  Still, the Flanagan Agency must have had _some_ genuine newtypes at its
disposal between June (when it was established) and October (when the
psycommu system was completed). I think it's pretty plausible that Lalah was
among these, since they seem to have no other pilot-qualified test subjects.
(Though presumably the three Z-type Zakus would have had newtype pilots...)

  The shortage of newtypes persists into Z and ZZ, inspiring the Titans and
Axis to use cloning and experimental surgery to create them. It isn't until
the end of ZZ, when the quasi-psycommu system is perfected, that they're
able to replicate their abilities in hardware. If the Zeons had any ambition
of creating large numbers of psycommu machines, they probably planned to
create more newtypes artificially; the epilogue of 08th MS Team indicates
that Dr. Flanagan was working on the same artificial newtype technology
later employed by the Titans...

-- Mark

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