Gundam Factory Yokohama, the amusement facility that showcases the moving 18m RX-78F00 Gundam statue, has been officially announced to open December 19, 2020. The statue initially was planned to be unveiled in October, but was delayed due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The Gundam’s construction was completed July 29th with the installation of the head unit, which included a blessing ceremony performed by Shinto priests. Since then the mobile suit had undergone a variety of mobility tests.
Gundam Factory Yokohama will be open from December 19, 2020 to March 31, 2022, with hours from 10:00 to 21:00 JST. Tickets go on sale this Friday, October 2, through the project’s official app and other ticketing services. Admission is priced at 1,650 yen for adults thirteen years and older, 1,100 yen for children seven to twelve, and 3,300 yen for the Gundam-Dock Tower, which allows visitors to see the Gundam much closer. The Gundam has twenty-four points of articulation and will have special movements made every hour from 10:30 to 20:30 JST, including special seasonal movements.
Gundam Lab is a two story building that will feature an event spaces to learn about the statue’s design, structures and mechanisms through talk shows, lectures, research presentations and workshops. The Lab will include the Gundam Pilot View SoftBank 5G Experience, a VR dome that simulates a real time Gundam piloting experience from the cockpit using 5G technology courtesy of SoftBank. Located within the Gundam Lab will also be its own satellite Gundam Cafe and The Gundam Base that will have their own unique menu and limited edition merchandise respectively.
The “Gundam Global Project” began as an ambitious project to realize the grand dream of creating a life size, 18m tall RX-78-2 Gundam that moves, the Gundam would later be dubbed RX-78F00 Gundam. With the tagline “Challenge the dream: When Gundam moves, the world moves.”, the project launched in 2014 but was stalled due to complications. In 2018, the project was revived for the Gundam 40th Anniversary.
The project was overseen by staff members from the realms of anime and film production to robotics and engineering. Masaki Kawahara, who’s helmed the creation of the three previous Gundam statues, serves as project manager. The Gundam utilizes a steel frame with a carbon resin exterior, powered by electrical actuators, and relies on Asratec Corp’s “V-Sido” operating system to generate motion.