Technology & Combat Characteristics
The TMF/A-802 BuCUE is a mobile suit designed for ground combat and unlike other ZAFT mobile suits, it is a quadruped machine. The four-legged design distributes the weight of the BuCUE, giving it greater balance and the ability to move on rough terrains on earth much more easily and nimbly than standard two-legged MS. Additionally, each leg is equipped with a caterpillar-treads. BuCUE can enter a "tank-mode" by crouching down and moving on these treads, giving it greater speed when travelling on terrains such a sandy deserts or snowy fields.
As the BuCUE's design emphasizes frontal armor strength, the tank mode with the overall height lowered, also functions as a measure against infantry, protecting its more vulnerable abdominal armor. The BuCUE possess a turret on its back for mounting either a twin 450mm railgun or a 13-tube 400mm missile pod. These were originally the BuCUE's only weapons. After ZAFT's theft and study of the G Project mobile suits, the BuCUE was upgraded with a head-mounted twin beam saber. In terms of defense, the BuCUE's armor is able to withstand impacts from conventional hand weapons, such as RPGs.
- Twin 450mm Railgun
- One of two weapons that can be mounted on the turret on the suit's back, this two barrel railgun use electricity to accelerate the projectiles. The projectiles are fitted with plasma warheads that can destroy a Linear Tank with a single blow. Due to the BuCUE's quadruped design, it is able to fire the railgun steadily, without worry of recoil.
- 13-tube 400mm Missile Pod
- The other weapon that can be mounted on the turret on the suit's back, since the turret is a rotary type, the missile pod can be fired in all directions. A sensor is installed at the tip of the warheads to automatically recognize and track enemy targets. Andrew Waltfield calculated it would take exactly 76 of such missiles to drain the Strike Gundam's Phase Shift.
- Twin Beam Saber
- The suit's primary melee weapon and only beam weapon, it is a later addition to the suit. Mounted in the mouth, it is primarily used for hit and run attacks.
Developed by the Asimov Design Bureau, which was responsible for the development of ZAFT's ground combat units, the BuCUE was unveiled on March 15, C.E. 70, just as Operation Uroboros was approved by the PLANT Supreme Council, and would become the mainline mobile suit for the operation.
It made its combat debut on May 30, during the Battle of Suez, when it devastated the Eurasian Federation's massive Linear Gun Tank corps at El Alamein thanks to the clever tactics of commander Andrew Waltfeld. In C.E. 71, following ZAFT's theft of the G Project mobile suits, late type BuCUE equipped with twin beam saber began rolling out.
On February 15, C.E. 71, the Archangel, having descended down to Earth and landed in Africa, was attacked by Andrew Waltfield's forces, including five BuCUE. The Archangel's on-board mobile suit, the Launcher Strike Gundam, initially struggled against the BuCUE due to not being adapted for the desert environment. However, the Strike's pilot Kira Yamato was able to quickly rewrite its programs to adjust to the new terrain and destroy two BuCUE in combat. The other three BuCUE were lured into a trap by the resistance group Desert Dawn and destroyed.
BuCUEs were later deployed in large numbers during Operation Spit Break, the attack on the EA headquarter JOSH-A.
The BuCUE would remain in service during the Second Alliance-PLANT War in C.E. 73. A large number of units would participate in the attack on the Gulnahan Ravine, the battle against the GFAS-X1 Destroy Gundam in Berlin, and Operation Angel Down.
Notes and Trivia
- In the Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Battle Destiny video game, the BuCUE has the ability to disable lock-on using a smoke screen despite not having smoke dispensers as standard equipment.
|Mobile Suit Gundam SEED C.E. 73: STARGAZER Mechanics|
GAT-01A2R Slaughter Dagger | GAT-X103AP Verde Buster Gundam | GAT-X105E+AQM/E-X09S Strike Noir Gundam | GAT-X1022 Blu Duel Gundam | GFAS-X1 Destroy Gundam
Linear Gun Tank
|Aircraft / Spacecraft|
|Transporter / Supply Ship|
|Cruiser / Mother Ship|
TFA-4DE GAZuOOT | TMF/A-802 BuCUE | TMF/A-802W2 Kerberos BuCUE Hound | ZGMF-1000/A1 Gunner ZAKU Warrior | ZGMF-1000/K Slash ZAKU Warrior | ZGMF-1000/M Blaze ZAKU Warrior | ZGMF-1017 GINN
GSX-401FW Stargazer Gundam | UT-1D Civilian Astray DSSD Custom
ZGMF-1017 GINN Insurgent Type