Mobile Suit Variations
During Operation British, Shin Matsunaga together with Meyer was tasked with protecting the depopulated colony cylinder Island Iffish from Side 2, Bunch 8 that was used to drop on Earth. Although the Earth Federation Forces made a nuclear strike, the colony was only broke into giant pieces as it hit Sydney and several other locations. In this operation he downed a Magellan-class battleship and several FF-S3 Saberfish fighters. After the battle, Shin, alongside Anavel Gato, Char Aznable and several other distinguished pilots personally received praise from commander of Zeon's Space Attack Forces, Vice Admiral Dozle Zabi (whom he has befriended since childhood).
Shin received his ace status after the Battle of Loum (which was also his first time acting as a leader, after his CO died in battle and passed onto him the role). His mobile suit's head and left shoulder were painted white, thus giving him the nickname The White Wolf (Hakurō 白狼), which was later expanded into "The White Wolf of Solomon" when it became clear the space fortress Solomon was his base of operations. For much of the war Shin served as the bodyguard of Dozle Zabi during the Admiral's frontline inspections. Due to their warrior-like mentalities and respect to each other, both considered they were brothers-in-arms. His mobile suits include a customized MS-06R-1A Zaku II High Mobility Type, MS-09R Rick Dom (with a Gouf's Heat Sword), and a MS-14Jg Gelgoog Jäger. Ironically, he was not at Solomon when the battle occurred, having been recalled to Side-3 shortly before the operation began. Shin's nickname "White Wolf" came not only from his white color scheme, but also his preference for close combat. Matsunaga was reported to have shot down 141 enemy MS and sunk six enemy ships.
In Gundam Evolve: 09, there is a character code-named Gray Wolf who pilots a yellow Zeta Gundam. While his name is never specifically stated, his physical appearance matches that of Matsunaga. In addition, he is referred to as a former Zeon ace pilot and a Gray Wolf emblem similar to Matsunaga's White Wolf emblem is located on the Zeta's shield.
The Zeta's yellow color is the result of being covered in the same anti-beam coating as AEUG's Hyaku Shiki. While understanding the value of such a coating, it does not stop Gray Wolf from complaining that he wanted the Zeta to be colored Gray.
Interestingly, Gray Wolf does not seem to have strong Newtype abilities; while the two other pilots are able to sense the approach of a Psyco ship, he is not. During the subsequent battle, Gray Wolf pilots his Buster Zeta into the mobile armor in an attempt to expose the enemy's movement patterns to White Unicorn, another Zeta pilot.
Two other Zetas in the same movie; one is colored in the purple-and-white color scheme of Amuro Ray (and Amuro himself is implied to be the pilot) and the other is painted in the red-and-black colors of Johnny Ridden (though it is a young Newtype girl named Yurii Ajissah who is piloting it).
Notes & Trivia
- Due to the lack of original material about Matsunaga's background and activity, there are various theories and conflicting information created by fans. Some noticeable suggestions include the following:
- According to the story script in the Mobile Suit Gundam: Encounters in Space video game's Ace Mode, He was a close friend of Dozle Zabi during his childhood as the two families were close in business relationships, both fought side-by-side as MS pilots during the One Year War, and the Matsunaga family was a firm supporter of Zeon's independence movement.
- It is also stated in Mobile Suit Gundam: Encounters in Space that Shin was recalled to Side-3 shortly before the Battle of Solomon in order to acquire the newly-completed MS-14Jg Gelgoog Jäger, hence why he didn't participate.
- Based on the aforementioned Gundam Evolve, it is also speculated that he served with the Anti-Earth Union Group (A.E.U.G.) / Karaba, under the codename "Gray Wolf", but the reason why he did not join the Neo Zeon is left unexplained however there is some speculation that this is because his ideologies clashed with the newer Zeons or he realized that Haman Karn was simply using Dozle Zabi's daughter for her own ends.
- According to the Gihren no Yabou (Gihren's Greed) games, Shin Matsunaga does join the A.E.U.G at one point. However, within the same game, it is also possible for him to join Axis during the same time period.
- However in Gihren no Yabou: Axis No Kyoui V, Shin Matsunaga can join A.E.U.G once the law stat is high enough. However the reason why he joined up is unknown and this would be classified as an unlockable pilot.
- In SD Gundam G Generation DS, he is noted for having a rather high melee stat and a remarkably high evade stat for an old type (referencing his fame for never getting hit). In most of the normal routes, he follows Char/Quattro into the AEUG and stays for the whole game. He possesses an ID Command that can lock out an enemy's use of ID commands, making him very useful against certain bosses that have HP restoring ones.