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The MS-05 Zaku I (MS-05 ザクI?) is a mobile suit featured in the Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin and Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin MSD Cucuruz Doan's Island manga, the Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin OVA, its television recut, and the Mobile Suit Discovery design series. Developed by Zeonic, Inc. from the MS-04 Bugu [1], it was the Autonomous Republic of Zeon's first mass produced mobile suit. They were first deployed at the Battle of Mare Smythii [2], and saw action in the early battles of the One Year War such as the Siege of Granada [3], and the Battle of Loum [4].

Technology & Combat Characteristics

Because it was an attempt to create a perfect humanoid mobile weapon equipped with a compact fusion reactor, the previously developed MS-04 Bugu ended up becoming a machine too expensive to mass-produce. Thus it was redesigned to create the MS-05 Zaku I, intended for mass production and combat deployment. The power pipes attached to the outside of the Bugu as part of its fluid pulse system were installed under the armor to prevent damage from enemy attacks, but as a result, its mobility and maneuverability were slightly inferior to those of the Bugu. Nonetheless, it addressed all the production and maintenance issues related to using large numbers of machines in the battlefield [5].

Equipment & Features


The head of the MS-05 was equipped with a mono-eye camera and sensors, with an exhaust heat duct in the center [6].


A backpack equipped with two thrusters and power pipes stored inside the main armor [7]. The backpack for the MS-05 had taken on a simple structure compared to the previous backpacks for the YMS-03 and MS-04 [6].


Machine Gun

A portable firearm that was developed specifically for mobile suits. Bullets were fed from a drum magazine, for greater mobility compared to a belt-fed machine gun [7].

Heat Hawk

An axe-shaped weapon for close combat. It used a super-heated blade to cut through the armor of the enemy. It could be attached to the waist [7]. Most of Zeon's mobile suits are equipped with this weapon [6].

Bazooka Type A2

A rocket launcher weapon carried by mobile suits and equipped with three rockets. It exhibited its destructive power mainly in anti-ship combat [7].

Bazooka Type A1

Used by Mash's unit. Unlike the Type A2, it did not feature a magazine, and had to be reloaded after each shot [8].

Anti-Space Ship Rifle ASR-78

A rifle developed specifically for mobile suits. Used mainly in anti-space ship combat. It shot special bullets at a high speed, which scatter pellets after penetrating the ship's armor, destroying ships from the inside. It was especially devastating when used against the bridge or engine of a ship [4].


A protective armament that was worn on the arm. It ensured good mobility but its ability to protect against bullets fell below the MS-06 Zaku II's L-shaped shield [7]. It was excluded from among the standard equipment of the MS-05 because it was judged more efficient to fend off attacks from mobile suits and warships [6].

Shoulder Shield

An L-shaped shield which could be mounted on the right shoulder, composed of steel and multiple types of shock-absorption material. spare magazines for the Bazooka Type A2 could be mounted onto it [4].


Black Tri-Stars Units

The three test pilots Gaia, Ortega, and Mash participated using the early mass production types of the MS-05 Zaku I, painted in dark gray. Gaia's and Ortega's machines were armed with Zaku machine guns, Mash's machine carried a Bazooka Type A1, and they all used the same short shield as the MS-04 Bugu [9].

Char Aznable Unit

The unit piloted by Char Aznable was one of the early mass production types deployed at the Battle of Mare Smythii. With the permission of Dozle Zabi, who was responsible for its development, Char participated in the Battle of Mare Smythii in a machine painted in the red personal colors that he chose after the Dawn Rebellion [5], this would eventually lead to his honorary title of "Red Comet" [10].

The backpack on this unit was equipped with a mount latch on the back [6]. Char would later pilot the MS-05S, a variant fitted with armaments intended for the MS-06 [11].

Kycilia's Forces Units

While the normal version was painted in green colors, the machines deployed with some special forces were given unique decorations and coloring to allow for easy identification of their assigned unit . The Zaku I assigned to the Special Service commanded by Major General Kycilia Zabi, who led a campaign on the lunar surface directly after the outbreak of the Zeon War of Independence, had a crest-shaped decoration on its head. Normally, markings were painted on the mobile suit to identify its machine number and assigned unit. But it is believed that the machines of the forces led by Major General Kycilia, which often carried out special missions, used different specifications from the usual version as a special measure [12].

The backpack on this unit was equipped with mounting latches on both sides. Additionally, the crest-shaped decoration on the head was designed after the steel helmet worn by the cavalry of the Munzo State Security Police [7]. The crest made it slightly taller than the normal version, and its color-scheme was ash purple, the same color as said cavalry [3].


U.C. 0078: Battle of Mare Smythii

On the dark side of the moon, Ramba Ral led the Black Tri-Stars, in their MS-05 Zaku I, to reach the edge of Mare Smythii within 12 hours. Private Char Aznable had already gone ahead and was standing on the open cockpit of his MS-05 when the others caught up [13][2]. An FF-1F Hog spotted Char's unit and was quickly destroyed by its machine gun. Char's unit destroyed another Hog. Ortega's Zaku I opened fire on a Hog shooting at him, too [2]. When the RCX-76-02 Guncannon First Types were deployed, Gaia laughed as his Zaku I destroyed Guncannon VB107. Mash then destroyed Guncannon VB105 with only a single shot from his Zaku I's Bazooka and then Ortega's Zaku I destroyed Guncannon VB106. Seeing this devastation, the captain of the Pizarro-class mobile transport ship ordered a recall of the Guncannons but lost his voice when the red shadow of Char's unit loomed into view in front of the ship. It was a mobility that far surpassed his imagination. The red machine fired the machine gun it held at the ship's bridge. The ship's triple-mounted anti-aircraft gun reacted and bombarded the red suit, but the red suit effortlessly dodged the attack, and fired a round at the rear engine. Engulfed in explosive flames, the ship sank into the Mare Smythii [14]. Ortega bludgeoned Guncannon VB102's head with his Zaku I's heat hawk. Gaia brushed of a shot from Guncannon VB104 as if it were nothing and bended his Zaku I over for Mash's to stand upon and deal the final blow with a bazooka. Ortega's Zaku I continued bludgeoning a Guncannon, Gaia's Zaku I chased an armless Guncannon VB103 and was ordered by Captain Ral to let the Guncannon go, Gaia ignored the order and sliced the Guncannon's backpack reactor, causing it to fall on Dr. Minovsky. Char's Zaku I stood beside the Pizarro-class wreckage [15][2].

U.C. 0079: One Year War

With the outbreak of the Zeon War of Independence, the MS-05 Zaku I was officially adopted as the main weapon of the Principality of Zeon forces [12], but it subsequently lost its position as a main machine due to the adoption of the even more complete MS-06 Zaku II [16].

Jan 03: One Week Battle

Major General Kycilia Zabi's Chivvay-class deployed her assault forces' MS-05 Zaku I units to occupy Granada and then her main force of Musai-class Early Production Type light cruisers attacked Federation Salamis-class and Magellan-class vessels above Von Braun. When a Magellan-class was destroyed, the MS-05S Char's Zaku I fired its machine gun as three standard Zaku I units departed from a Musai-class [17][2][3].

Jan 23: Battle of Loum

Destroying a Columbus-class transport

The MS-05 saw action at the Battle of Loum alongside the MS-06. Denim piloted a unit equipped with a machine gun whereas Slender piloted a unit equipped with a shoulder shield and Bazooka Type A2 [16][18].

Sep: Escape From Luna II

Gadem's Papua-class supply ship had caught fire and the Falmer was encircled by enemy mobile suits from all sides. Gadem had gotten into an MS-05 Zaku I to deliver the Zaku II units to the Falmer, pushing each one up. Kai continued firing from his RX-77 Guncannon, but Gadem's Zaku I appeared out of the flames, much to Kai's surprise. Gadem sought to avenge his ship, even in a second-hand mobile suit. After punching Kai's Guncannon, he attempted to grab it. Ryu and Hayato's Guntank then appeared behind the Guncannon, putting the Zaku I off-balance with its long barrels. Hayato took aim at the Zaku I and destroyed it, killing Gadem [19].

Oct: Operation Odessa

Kalka's Zaku I aiming sniper rifle.

Hjalmar rushed to the Gundam Marine Type that was aiming for the seaborne MS-05 pilot Kalka. Hjalmar's Gogg and Gundam Marine Type engaged in a rough fight. It was almost impossible for Kalka to snipe enemies in that state. Kalka pulled the trigger, killing in a raged hesitation. Damaged by the blow, the Gundam Marine Type withdrew [20].


See also: /Gallery



  1. MSD(Mobile Suit Discovery)|機動戦士ガンダム THE ORIGIN 公式サイト (Japanese). Retrieved on 2020-12-02. “ジオンのMS開発の流れ”
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Episode 4, Eve of Destiny
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 (November 2017) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I (Kycilia's Forces) Manual. Bandai, 1. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 (May 2016) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I Manual (in Japanese). Bandai, 2. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 MECHANICAL|MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN. Retrieved on 2020-12-02. “Autonomous Republic of Zeon: MS-05 Zaku I”
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 (March 2017) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I (Char Aznable) Manual. Bandai, 2. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 7.5 (November 2017) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I (Kycilia's Forces) Manual. Bandai, 2. 
  8. (2018-03-26) アニメーション「機動戦士ガンダムTHE ORIGIN」キャラクター&メカニカルワークス 上巻 1 (in Japanese). 角川書店, 92. ISBN 978-4041062708. 
  9. MECHANICAL|MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN. Retrieved on 2020-12-02. “Autonomous Republic of Zeon: MS-05 Zaku I (Gaia, Ortega, Mash)”
  10. (March 2017) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I (Char Aznable) Manual. Bandai, 3. 
  11. MECHANICAL|MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN. Retrieved on 2020-12-05. “Autonomous Republic of Zeon: MS-05S Char's Zaku I”
  12. 12.0 12.1 MECHANICAL|MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN. Retrieved on 2020-12-02. “Autonomous Republic of Zeon: MS-05 ZAKU I(KYCILIA'S FORCES)”
  13. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Chapter 49
  14. (March 2017) HG 1/144 MS-05 Zaku I (Char Aznable) Manual. Bandai, 1. 
  15. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Chapter 50
  16. 16.0 16.1 MECHANICAL|MOBILE SUIT GUNDAM THE ORIGIN. Retrieved on 2020-12-02. “Principality of Zeon Forces: MS-05 Zaku I”
  17. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Chapter 51
  18. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Episode 1, Blue-Eyed Casval
  19. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin Chapter 6
  20. Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin MSD Cucuruz Doan's Island Chapter 5, Decoy

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