Like the three specials of Gundam SEED, these specials feature new or changed scenes of the TV series. However unlike the TV series, which was told in the points of view of main characters Shin Asuka and Kira Yamato, the Special Edition was told through the eyes of Athrun Zala (torn between his friendships to both Kira and Shin), giving the movies a much more neutral point of view.
Airing On Japanese TV
- First special, 'The Broken World' (covers episodes 1 to 13 of the series): Aired in two parts on May 2 and May 3, 2006.
- Second special, 'Respective Swords' (covers episodes 14 to 28 of the series): Aired in two parts on July 27 and July 28, 2006
- Third special, "The Hellfire of Destiny" (covers episodes 29 to 42 of the series): Aired on 8 Oct, 2006
- Fourth special, "The Cost of Freedom" (covers episodes 43 to 50 of the series and Final Plus): Aired on February 23, 2007.
- Special Edition I - The Broken World
- Special Edition II - Respective Swords
- Special Edition III - The Hellfire Of Destiny
- Special Edition IV - The Cost of Freedom
The transition from the TV broadcast to movies allowed changes to the storyline of the show to be made for the movie versions. Note: Some of the changes below were made to the DVD version of the TV series before being edited into the Special Editions.
Special Edition I - The Broken World
- The opening sequence shows several new scenes at Orb and PLANT: Kira and Lacus walking on the beach, scenes with Athrun and Cagalli preparing to launch with the shuttle to PLANT until the actual launch, Shin and Rey training with their suits at Armory One, the terrorists which will drop Junius Seven on Earth before the start of their mission…
- A scene when Rey looks to Gilbert who talks with Cagalli in front of a mobile suit hangar.
- Several new scenes of Athrun fighting in the ZAKU against the three stolen Gundams.
- The scene where Durandal reveals that Alex is Athrun is completely redrawn.
- Several new battle scenes at Junius Seven.
- When Athrun drives with Kira in his car he tells him that he will go to PLANT (in the series he only told it to Cagalli).
- Shin talking with Lunamaria about why he doesn't leave the ship at Orb.
- The scene when Athrun says goodbye to Cagalli before leaving for PLANT is completely redrawn.
- The scene when Shin visits the memorial at Orb is different.
- Heine Westenfluss is shown in two scenes during the battle at Aprilius One.
- The scene when Kira saves Lacus from the sniper is redrawn.
- When Kira asks Lacus for the keys to open the gate to the Freedom is different.
- When the ASH pilots commit suicide Kira displays shock, before staring blankly out of his cockpit, during the ending credits.
Special Edition II - Respective Swords
- Instead of joining the Archangel crew later, Miriallia is already on the ship when it leaves Orb.
- While sitting in his office, Durandal is informed that the Minerva has reached Carpentaria. Afterwards he thinks about whether Shin's SEED factor has awakened (this shows that he knows about it). He also asks himself whether he can defeat Kira Yamato.
- The battle at Gulnahan is shown in short clips during Meer's concert.
- During the meeting between Durandal and the crew members of the Minerva, Rey has a short talk about war.
- While Durandal talks with Athrun about the Archangel, a short scene of the ship is shown, as well as a scene in which Kira repairs Haro while Lacus watches.
- When Shin and Stella are rescued from the cave, it isn't Athrun who rescues them but Lunamaria.
- During the Battle of Dardanelles, Waltfeld isn't seen launching from the Archangel, and any scene of him fighting thereafter is also cut.
- A short new scene when Lacus enters the bath of the Archangel, which shows her nude from behind.
- When Kira and Cagalli meet Athrun, there is a short new scene of the Freedom as it emerges from the water.
- When Shin stops Stella's rampage in the infirmary of the Minerva, Lunamaria is also present and her shocked face is shown when the captain and Athrun enter.
- When Lacus tells Kira that she will go to the PLANTs, they both hug in the end instead of simply looking at each other.
- When Savior was destroyed by Freedom, it immediately loses power, causing it to phase shift down instead of still being powered in the original series.
Special Edition III - The Hellfire Of Destiny
- When Kira fights the Destroy, the scenes when Kira fights Sting and Neo are cut.
- When Shin approaches Stella in the Destroy, his beam saber is turned off.
- The fight between Kira and Shin during Operation Angel Down had added fast effects.
- The scene where Impulse tosses its shield at Freedom and ricochets a beam rifle shot off it is redrawn so the shield is in its "extended" mode.
- When Athrun wakes at the Archangel, Cagalli is beside Kira.
- Destiny's front faced beam rifle shooting animation is redrawn to show more of its surroundings.
- During the battle at Heaven's Base a new scene is added in which the Legend destroys several mobile suits among them a GAT-333 Raider Full Spec.
- In Kira's first battle with the Strike Freedom, the scene where the two GOUF Ignited pilots realize that Freedom can use DRAGOON units is re-drawn, as is Kira's reaction shot when said GOUFs entangle Freedom's arm and leg in their heat rods just prior to the DRAGOONs being launched.
- When Strike Freedom launches its DRAGOONs, its wings always display the "Wings of Light" effect in all scenes afterwards.
- When Durandal is informed that Djibril is in Orb, he is seen smiling.
- The Akatsuki is recolored with a more golden shine. Note that this is probably the same golden shine used in the Akatsuki when Neo started using it in space and therefore, it is probably changed to keep consistency.
- The part where Kira attacks Shin after re-entry with his Strike Freedom is different. The sword slashing part gets redrawn.
- The scene where Shin's Destiny runs low on power is cut. Rey simply calls back Shin to the Minerva to resupply his MS's lost melee weapons.
- A short scene displaying Rey and Lunamaria's shocked expression when Strike Freedom caught Destiny's anti-ship sword and fired the railguns at point blank range.
Special Edition IV - The Cost of Freedom
- Fast effects are added to Strike Freedom when it fires its chest cannon at Legend Gundam. For some reason, this doesn't apply when it fires it at Destiny during the last battle, but does so again when it fires it at Legend at a later point.
- When Athrun uses the Infinite Justice to ram Destiny, there is an emphasis when both mobile suits make contact.
- Several of Infinite Justice's footage gets renewed, including using its shield to block Destiny's beam boomerang (beam blade configuration) as well as when it uses its double saber to fling off Destiny after the beam boomerang makes contact with the shield. In the final battle, the footage of ∞ Justice blocking Impulse's beam rifle shots are also changed.
- Shin gets a shocked flashback moments before crossing blades with Athrun in the Infinite Justice during their battle at Orb, perhaps implying that he lost the clash because he was distracted.
- While chasing after Djibril in the Orb Shuttle, Impulse's shooting poses are changed in order to emphasize more on how air resistance affected Luna's aiming capabilities.
- Rey has a brief dialogue before finishing off Djibril during the battle at Requiem.
- A brief clip of Cagalli taking her ring off is shown during her speech before Archangel launches.
- The note Meer sends Lacus on the moon now has proper English grammar.
- The fight between Kira and Rey has been reanimated. Also, Rey was seen (sensed by Kira) as Rau.
- The end sequence has been expanded with Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny Final Plus: The Chosen Future.
Openings, Endings, and Insert songs
Played at the DVD's selection menu. The music is same with each series' endings.
- Result by Nami Tamaki (The Broken World)
- tears by lisa (Respective Swords)
- Enrai ~ Tooku Ni Aru Akari by High and Mighty Color (The Hellfire Of Destiny)
- Fields of Hope by Rie Tanaka
- Zips (UNDER:COVER version) by T.M.Revolution
- EMOTION by Rie Tanaka
- Meteor by T.M.Revolution
- Shinkai no Kodoku (深海の孤独) by Houko Kuwashima
- Vestige by T.M.Revolution
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED: Special Edition (Prequel)