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The standard MS-06 Zaku II

The MS-06 Zaku II (ザク II Zaku tsu?) was a series of mobile suits produced and operated by the Principality of Zeon. It was Zeon's primary mass production mobile suit series throughout the One Year War.


Following the success of the MS-05 Zaku I, Zeon's first combat mobile suit, the Zeon military leadership ordered Zeonic to continue its development. In response, Zeonic developed a new mobile suit based on the design of the MS-05.[1] The prototype for this mobile suit rolled out in August, U.C. 0077.[2] Originally intended as an improved model of the MS-05, this prototype was instead given the new model number of MS-06A due to its signficantly different appearance and vastly improved performance, marking the birth of the MS-06 Zaku II.[1]

Though the MS-06A was quickly approved for mass production, Kycilia Zabi considered its complete lack of close-combat weapon to be a weakness in the event that the Earth Federation Forces develop its own mobile weapons. She halted its mass production and ordered it to be redesigned, resulting in the MS-06C, which was equipped with shoulder spikes, a shoulder shield, and a heat hawk, features that would become standard for future models in the MS-06 series. The mass production of the MS-06C began in January, U.C. 0078, marking Zeon's shift to full wartime readiness.[2] The primary weapon of the MS-06C was a 240mm bazooka loaded with nuclear warheads, and it was equipped with heavy radiation shielding to protect it from its own weapon. However, following the signing of the Antarctic Treaty on January 31, U.C. 0079, the use of nuclear weapons was banned. Subsequently, the MS-06C was redesigned, with the radiation shielding removed and a more powerful generator installed. This resulted in the lighter MS-06F, which would become Zeon's mainstay mobile suit for the remainder of the One Year War.[3]

While the F Type was fully capable of combat under gravity based on simulations conducted on the moon and inside colonies, productivity was still an issue - its expensive space-use equipment would become dead weight on Earth. As such, the development of local warfare type mobile suits was considered necessary. Many local warfare variants of the Zaku II were created, including the ground-use MS-06J Zaku II Ground Type, the anti-air cannon-equipped MS-06K Zaku Cannon, the desert-use MS-06D Zaku Desert Type, the aqauatic MS-06M Zaku Marine Type. Meanwhile, development into space-combat variants of the Zaku II continued, leading to variants such as the high mobility MS-06R series and the MS-06E Zaku Reconnaissance Type. In fact, nearly all mobile suits developed by Zeon until the middle stage of the war were part of the MS-06 series.[2]

Later in the war, two improved variants of the Zaku II were developed: the late production variant MS-06F-2 Zaku II F2 Type and the final production variant MS-06FZ Zaku II Kai. Both of these variants boasted significantly improved performance. However, due to various factors, such as the Zeon military's top-down structure, Zeon supply routes being severed, and late production time, they only saw limited action during the war.[4][5] Even after the end of the war, the Zaku II would have a tremendous impact on the development of future mobile suits, leading to successors like the RMS-106 Hizack and the AMX-011 Zaku III.


Behind the Scenes[]

Notes & Trivia[]

  • March 9th has become known as "Zaku Day" (ザクの日 Zaku no hi?) among some Gundam fans due to Japanese wordplay for 3 ( Sān?) and 9 ( Kyū?) sounding similar to "Zaku".
  • Although partially, the Zaku was a design model for the Russian Jaeger Cherno Alpha, in the 2013 movie Pacific Rim.[8]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Kenichi Kusakari (2013-02-21). 機動戦士ガンダムMSV-R ザク編 [Mobile Suit Gundam MSV-R: Zaku Edition] 2 (in Japanese). Kadokawa Corporation, pp. 6-7. ISBN 9784041205921. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 (1989-02-01) 機動戦士ガンダム MS大図鑑【PART.1 一年戦争編】 [Mobile Suit Gundam MS Encyclopedia 【PART.1 One Year War】] ENTERTAINMENT BIBLE. 1 (in Japanese). Bandai, p. 38. ISBN 9784891890063. 
  3. (1989-02-01) 機動戦士ガンダム MS大図鑑【PART.1 一年戦争編】 [Mobile Suit Gundam MS Encyclopedia 【PART.1 One Year War】] ENTERTAINMENT BIBLE. 1 (in Japanese). Bandai, p. 118. ISBN 9784891890063. 
  4. Master Grade MS-06F-2 Zaku II F2 (2002) instruction manual
  5. NG0080 MS-06FZ Zaku-FZ (1989) instruction manual
  6. アニメック(Animec) 16th issue special volume, 機動戦士ガンダム大事典 (Mobile suit Gundam Encyclopedia), 1 March 1981, Yoshiyuki Tomino Interview, そうですね、ザクなんかでも………大きい人が歩いてくると地面がザクッザクッと音をだしますね、それからとったんですよ。(笑), Yes, Zaku whatever... is when a huge man walking the ground will make Zaku, Zaku sound, and it took that (for its name) (laughter)
  7. ガンダム・エイジ (Gundam Age), 洋泉社, 敵のモビルスーツのザクは、もともとは、雑兵っていうか、雑魚(ザコ)なのね。でも、ザコじゃあんまりだ。やつら軍隊だから、軍団でザクザクやってくるでしょ。だからザクにしようって, Enemy's Mobile suit Zaku is originally (designed as) a common soldier, disposable underling (Zako). However, saying it is an underling is too extreme, they are a military force and flanks of army make the Zaku Zaku sound, thus it was named Zaku.

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