Technology & Combat Characteristics
One of the five mobile suits developed as part of the Earth Alliance's G Project, the Buster Gundam is an artillery mobile suit and adopts the X100-series frame, similar to the one used by the GAT-X102 Duel Gundam. It has firepower rivaling that of a battleship's and is meant to provide rear support for the other units and to attack enemy ships or facilities from a distance.
Its primary armaments are the back-mounted gun launcher and high-energy rifle, both are energy intensive and equipped with their own sub-generators. They can also combine to form the more powerful anti-armor shotgun or the hyper impulse long-range sniper rifle, with the improved firepower seemingly caused by the linkage of the sub-generators. Although the suit has no close combat weapon, it has a pair of shoulder-mounted missile pods that can be used to discourage enemy units from closing in.
Due to its role, the main sensor camera on Buster's head is very important and is protected with additional armor. The suit also has the new Phase Shift armor like the other units in the project, making it nearly impervious to shell firing weapons.
- 350mm Gun Launcher
- Mounted on the backpack and carried in Buster's right hand when in use. It is a projectile weapon akin to a railgun or linear gun, which uses electromagnetic forces rather than gunpowder to launch its projectiles. In addition to ordinary solid shells, the gun-launcher can also fire specialized munitions such as armor-piercing and high explosive rounds.
- Anti-Armor Shotgun
- When the High-energy Rifle and Gun Launcher combine, with the Gun Launcher on the front, it forms a very powerful shell-firing Anti-Armor Shotgun. It fires a single stream containing multiple shells that later splits apart, resulting in a scatter shot that damages a wide area. It appears that about four or five shells fired from the Anti-Armor Shotgun is enough to destroy some battleships. Although the combined form has higher power, the rate of fire is decreased.
- 94mm High-energy Rifle
- Mounted on the backpack and carried in Buster's left hand when in use. It is a beam weapon similar to the beam rifle, and is the highest caliber energy rifle among those used by other units in the G Project. Its destructive power is above a battleship's beam cannon despite its smaller size.
- Hyper Impulse Long-Range Sniper Rifle
- When the High-energy Rifle and Gun Launcher combine, with the High-energy Rifle on the front, it can form a Long-Range Sniper Rifle. This beam cannon type weapon has a higher energy output, firing a larger beam that is capable of penetrating several targets, including battleships. As the name implies, it also features sniping capabilities due to the longer range of the beam. Although the combined form has higher power, the rate of fire is decreased.
- 220mm 6-barrel Missile Pod
- The Buster is equipped with two 220mm 6-barrel Missile Pods, one in each shoulder, allowing the suit to fire a rain of missiles to destroy enemy units or to stop them from moving closer.
Special Equipment & Features
- As with all of the G Project mobile suits, the Buster Gundam is equipped with phase shift armor. When activated the Buster's color is changed from a light grey to a beige scheme with a bit of green and orange mixed in. Phase Shift armor, when activated, renders the Buster immune to physical attacks such as bullets, the GINN sword, or against missiles. However Phase Shift armor continually drains the battery of energy, shortening the mobile suit's combat endurance, and uses up additional energy when it is hit.
The Buster was one of the prototype mobile suits created by the Earth Alliance under its G Project during the First Alliance-PLANT War. Together with four other machines, the Buster was manufactured secretly in the Orb Union's space colony Heliopolis.
Buster was stolen by ZAFT pilot Dearka Elsman on Cosmic Era January 25, 71, and was used by him throughout the rest of the war. Dearka frequently dueled with TS-MA2mod.00 Moebius Zero/FX-550 Skygrasper pilot Mu La Flaga, neither pilot able to gain a competitive advantage over the other. The Buster was eventually shot down on earth and captured by the crew of the Archangel in June 71. Dearka spent approximately a month in the ship's brig and subsequently joined the Clyne Faction, using the Buster to bring about the end of the First Alliance-PLANT War. On the last day of the war, the Buster was severely damaged by the ZGMF-X13A Providence Gundam. Dearka and the damaged Buster later met Yzak and his GAT-X102 Duel Gundam, but they came under attack by the GAT-X370 Raider Gundam. After the Duel's beam rifle was destroyed by Raider, Yzak borrowed the Buster's Hyper Impulse Long-Range Sniper Rifle to take it down.
The Earth Alliance developed a mass-produced variant of the Buster during the war, the GAT/A-01E2 Buster Dagger, which combined the frame of a GAT-01A1 Dagger with the Buster's weaponry and can be equipped with a pair of beam sabers, correcting a flaw in Buster's design. The artillery support paradigm of the Buster was used in developing another heavily-armed, long-range mobile suit, the GAT-X131 Calamity.
After the war, as part of the "Actaeon Project" MS development plan, another Buster Gundam was manufactured and piloted by Phantom Pain pilot, Shams Couza. The unit was later upgraded into the GAT-X103AP Verde Buster.
- Appearing in the manga Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Re:, it is the Buster Gundam equipped with new parts on the chest, back, leg and feet, as well as a large METEOR-like underwater-use attachment. The attachment is built with parts from the UMF-4A GOOhN and UMF-5 ZnO, and can change into an underwater cruising mode when travelling in water. In MS mode, parts of the attachment are held in hand like the METEOR. A weakness of the underwater equipment is that it only has a shallow diving depth.
Notes and Trivia
- The reason for Buster Gundam and its pilot, Dearka, joining the Archangel was to boost their popularity, in hopes of better sales of the associated model kits and action figures.
- In Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Battle Destiny, the combination types of the Gun Launcher and High-energy Rifle can only be used under special conditions:
- Anti-Armor Shotgun: SP Charge Attack (L+O when SP gauge is at 15%)
- Hyper Impulse Long-Range Sniper Rifle: SP Special Attack (Triangle + O when SP gauge is at 50%)
|Phantom Pain Report Mechanics|
GAT-X102 Duel Gundam | GAT-X103 Buster Gundam | GAT-X105E+AQM/E-M1 Strike Gundam E IWSP | GAT-X105E+AQM/E-X02 Sword Strike Gundam E | GAT-X105E+AQM/E-X03 Launcher Strike Gundam E | GAT-X105E+AQM/E-X09S Strike Noir Gundam | GAT-X207 Blitz Gundam | GAT-X207SR Nero Blitz Gundam | GAT-X303 Aegis Gundam | GAT-X303AA Rosso Aegis Gundam
TMF/A-802W2 Kerberos BuCUE Hound | ZGMF-1017M2 GINN High Maneuver Type II
GAT-01A2R Slaughter Dagger
GSF-YAM01 Δ Astray | MBF-JG73MJ Mars Jacket | MMF-JG73L ∇
ZGMF-X12D Gundam Astray Out Frame D