Gunpla for Kids – Best Gundam Model Kit Figures for Children

Gunpla for Kids – Best Gundam Model Kit Figures for Children

Gunpla, or Gundam model making, is a niche hobby taking the world by storm – but for mostly adult hobbyists. How would you introduce it to your kid/child though? What about your little brother, sister, or niece? This article will show you the top recommendations on Gunpla for kids!

What Type of Gunpla Should I Buy for My Kid?

First things first – even before thinking about how to exactly make Gunpla building fun for your kid, there are so many different Gunpla kits to choose from the get go that you don’t know which one would be best to start off with. Don’t worry though! Here’s a short list of our personal top best Gunpla kit recommendations for children.

Number 1 Tip: Get a Kit That the Kid Actually Likes

There’s no point in getting a kit that your child doesn’t like if they already have their heart set on a specific model. For example, if your child already watched a couple of Gundam series and loved the Star Build Strike Gundam from Gundam Build Fighters, or loves a another certain Gundam or mobile suit, the best piece of advice for you would be to simply buy that exact kit. The only time I would personally not choose this choice would be when the kit is extremely old (e.g. pre 2000s) as it is generally harder to snap in parts for older kits as they do not fit as perfectly into each other due to imperfect molds. Not only that, but they can also be flimsy, have bad articulation, bad parts separation, and have bad joints overall.

What if your kid doesn’t like any particular kit though? What if they just want any kit to try the hobby out? Keep reading to learn more about all the great and vast amount of choices you have for your children!

SD/BB Gundams

Nippers Needed?: Yes

Typically with bigger parts and smaller amount of parts in total, SD or BB gundams are “chibi”/cute miniature versions of full-sized Gundam model kits. They’re great for kids as they take less time to make due to the smaller amount of parts, and they’re typically easier to assemble as well. Not only that, but their cute miniature form makes them loved by many children, both new and old to the hobby. A typical SD Gundam takes 15 to 30 minutes to complete.

Full-sized HG Version of the Original Gundam
Full-sized HG Version of the Original Gundam
SD Version of the Original Gundam
SD Version of the Original Gundam

The exact number of parts and number of runners depends on the kit, but rest assured that they are not as complicated as their HG counterparts!

There is even the recent release of a new line of SD Gundams called Cross Silhouette Gundams, in which the inner frames are interchangeable with different SD mobile suits!

Petit’GGuy

Nippers Needed?: Preferred but not Needed

Petit’gguy’s are another great option if, for example, your daughter loves teddy bears! She can collect a rainbow of them, or even funny ones like one with cat ears or a panda’gguy! Petit’gguy’s are also one of the cheapest types of kits, typically under $10 (not including shipping and taxes). They typically take around 15 minutes for an adult to complete, but perhaps around half an hour for your child. Definitely a soft and gentle but fun introduction to the world of Gunpla! They can even do fun things with some kits, like writing custom messages on the little signs that some petit’gguys have, called “placards”!

Below is a photo of some of my Petit’gguys, and they’re a good example of Petit’gguys with placards. The left one has a Chinese character written in marker on its placard.

The type and number of parts and the number of runners for all of Petit’gguys are standard and all come from the same type of mold in order to standardize them. You can see an example of what you get in a typical box in the below photo. For this particular example, I have the Fortune Red Petit’gguy. It comes with an easy-to-read instruction manual that HAS English instructions (not only Japanese), and it also comes with 3 small runners, 1 PC runner, and some stickers. All parts can technically be plucked out from their respective runners. How quaint and charming!

There are even Chara’gguy figures, a portmanteau of character and petit’gguy, in which anime characters from Gundam series like Fumina and Gyanko wear petit’gguy costumes, as depicted below. Super cute!

Haropla

Nippers Needed?: Preferred but not Needed

Picture of my quickly assembled Haropla.

Haropla is a portmanteau of “Haro” and “Gunpla” (which itself is a portmanteau of “Gundam” and “plastic model”). Haros can be considered as a cute mechanical mascot of the Gundam franchise as it appears in many different Gundam series, such as the original Mobile Suit Gundam, Gundam SEED, and Gundam 00 as an adorable generic robotic helper.

Just like with petit’gguys, all haropla have standardized parts so you can theoretically mix and match two haropla’s parts together. They can also fit a Petitgguy’s jigsaw-puzzle stand/base, as seen in the image below. Haropla typically go for around $10 as well.  Finally, you can again just pluck each part from its runner without the use of nippers. Nippers are preferred though as it’ll make a cleaner cut and help reduce unsightly nubs.

EG Kits

Nippers Needed?: No

“Entry Grade” or EG Kits are 1/144 kits that are specifically designed to welcome newcomers to the hobby. The major differences between these kits and their more well-known counterparts, HG kits, are that EG kits are simpler to build in that they have no PC parts, and because they also come with a parts separator. This parts separator means you do not have to buy a separate pair of nippers to pry the parts off the runners. EG Kits and most other non-HG 1/144 kits (barring RG, etc.) are more limited in articulation though. However, most likely your kids won’t mind this too much.

FG Kits

Nippers Needed?: Yes

FG Kits, also known as “First Grade” kits, are ironically named as they could be considered kits for “first graders”! They are similar to EG kits, except they don’t have a parts separator. This could be for better or worse. On one hand, it means you’ll have to buy a pair of nippers, which costs a bit of money. In addition, nippers may not be safe for young children. On the other hand, if your child is mature enough to hold a pair of nippers, they’ll probably would prefer to use nippers than not use them to feel like a big kid!

AG Kits

Nippers Needed?: Yes

AG Kits are similar to FG Kits, though they’re specifically for Gundam Age mobile suits. In addition, they include a microchip as they’re specifically made to promote an arcade game called GAGE-ING. AG kits aren’t our top recommended choice out of this entire list of recommendations, as most likely you don’t live in Japan and do not have access to the arcade game.

HG Kits

Nippers Needed?: Yes

Maybe your child wants to and is able to handle building something more complex. Maybe he or she doesn’t like SD/BB or Petit’gguys and would rather build larger figures that aren’t “chibi”? HG kits would be the next step up for them, though not every HG kit is the same. Some are harder than others. Some have a lot more parts than others. In general, lots of kits post-Gundam 00 Season 2 (2009-ish) are generally good. Gundam 00 definitely set the gold standard for HG’s. However, here’s a more specific list of some HG Gunpla for kids that we picked specifically because they are easy to complete in a small amount of time compared to other HGs.

HG Leo

The Leo was featured as a grunt suit in the famous series, Gundam Wing, and has recently got an HG release. Even though this kit release is pretty new compared to the rest of the kits in this list of recommendations, the HG Leo is actually pretty kid-friendly as it takes little time to complete and build. This makes sense as there are a lot of big round parts this kit has.

Old HG GM Kits

Pretty much all old 2000s GM kits are fairly easy to assemble with big parts. You can even see just how big each separate plastic part is in the image below (e.g. look at the skirt and legs!)

Old HG 00 Kits

Made in the mid 2000s when Gundam 00 was airing, these are semi-old but pretty easy HG kits to build. Gundam 00 is also one of the more well-known anime that many children and teenagers enjoy.

Old HG Seed Kits

One of, if not the most popular series in the Gundam Franchise, Gundam SEED coincidentally also has some of the most friendly-to-build kits as well (which probably to cater to the onslaught of new Gundam fans that this anime was able to get). The older kits we’re talking about in particular were made in the early 2000s when SEED was first beginning to air on TVs throughout the world.

Beargguy III

The Beargguy III is specifically designed to be cute because it’s targeted towards young girls, and is in fact piloted by a girl in the anime Gundam Build Fighters. As with all our other HG recommendations, the Beargguy III and its variants have typical big and few parts compared to lots of tiny parts of other HGs and higher grades like MGs, PGs, etc.

Those are just some of the top choices of Gunpla for kids! Building Gundam models with our families is a fun and rewarding experience, isn’t it? Tune in for more articles about how to make Gunpla building even more exciting for your children with the use of arts and crafts, fabric, and other ideas.

See you next time!

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