Technology & Combat Characteristics
Of the five original Gundams created for Operation Meteor, Gundam Sandrock boasts the strongest armor and the highest power output. Intended for desert combat, it also sports tough anti-dust joints and armor. Gundam Sandrock's primary weapons are a pair of heat shotels, which worked as both an excellent pair of melee weapons and as throwing weapons. The heat shotels can also combine with the shield and backpack into the cross crusher, a large pincer-like weapon capable of snapping mobile suits in two. Other weapons of the Gundam include a pair of head vulcan guns and two homing missiles. The Sandrock was constructed by Instructor H in the L4 colonies under the financial support of the Winner family.
- Vulcan Gun
- These head mounted shell firing weapons have a high-rate of fire, but have little power and are generally ineffective against mobile suits; however, the vulcan gun can damage lightly armored areas such as the sensors. These weapons are ideal for shooting down small, fast moving, lightly armored targets such as missiles or small vehicles.
- Heat Shotel
- These heat-radiating curved blades are the Gundam Sandrock's main weapons, and with them this mighty mobile suit can cut an enemy in half with each hand simultaneously. When required, the heat shotels can also be used as throwing weapons. When not in use, they are mounted on the backpack of the Sandrock. In the Katoki version, the blades are larger and the heat shotels can be connected at their pommels to form a double-bladed weapon, as shown in the MG model kit.
- Beam Machine Gun
- A handheld beam weapon used for mid-range combat. While its shots are weaker than those of standard beam rifles, its rate of fire is much greater. When not in use, the beam machine gun can be stored on the rear waist armor. It is only used by the Katoki version.
- Homing Missile
- Equipped on the shoulders, the two missiles can reliably seek and destroy the enemy under any conditions. They're the only long-range weapons for the TV Version of the Gundam Sandrock. This weapon is omitted from the Katoki version.
- Designed with a snake head motif, it features two claws as "fangs", and two shield flashers as "eyes". The shield has an anti beam coating, and the shield flashers can release a blinding flash to confuse enemies. The Katoki version also has a similar shield.
- Cross Crusher
- This arm-mounted crushing weapon is formed by combining the Gundam Sandrock's shield, backpack, and heat shotels. It can capture an enemy mobile suit in between the shotels, and then cuts them in half. In the Katoki version, the Cross Crusher can be formed with just the shield and heat shotels as shown by the MG model kit.
- Armadillo Armor
- A set of extra armor for the Katoki Version, making its debut in Gundam Wing - Endless Waltz: The Glory of Losers. An optional, dispersable armor that houses four large boosters underneath for flight and high jumps. It is also equipped with a pair of WMS-03 Maganac's shields. In the Version 2 loadout, to switch from a defensive role to a offensive one the shields would be replaced with a pair of Missile Containers.
Special Equipment & Features
- Self-Destruct System
- The Gundam Sandrock was built to self-destruct should the pilot choose to. A remote detonator is placed within the cockpit and if a dire situation arrives, the pilot can destroy the Mobile Suit. The system was designed to overload its power systems and has enough explosive power to destroy several city blocks. It's a last option tactic if the pilot is incapable of protecting the Mobile Suit, while not allowing it to fall into enemy hands. It also can be used as one large explosive device to eradicate large targets.
- Diffusing Cloak
- Featured only on the Katoki version, it is a piece of material with anti-beam coating that is able to take a few beam shots before disintegrating. The cloak was also featured on the original Gundam Sandrock in the manga version of Gundam W.
- Hovercraft Propulsion System
- A system of parts that attaches around the lower half of the Sandrock, this give the Sandrock the ability to skim across the ground at high speed similar to the WMS-04 Olifant. Two machine guns are also mounted on each side of the Sandrock allowing for hit and run tactics. Used only by the Katoki version.
When the five scientists who designed the XXXG-00W0 Wing Gundam Zero in AC 180 went their separate ways, each of them took copies of the plans for their original Gundam design. Instructor H, who went into hiding in the L4 colonies, then went on to design and build his own Gundam based on their original plans. His result was the XXXG-01SR Gundam Sandrock, built specifically for pilot Quatre Raberba Winner. Quatre had no intention of aiding in Operation Meteor's colony drop operation, and - against his pacifist father's wishes - took his Sandrock to Earth to meet up with the Maganac Corps in their direct fight against OZ and the oppressive Earth Alliance.
Sandrock met its end when in order to create a diversion to facilitate the escape of his allies, Quatre was forced to sacrifice Sandrock along with himself, a decision which he did not take lightly, as he had come to see his war machine almost as a friend. However, Sandrock's cockpit opened of its own accord, implying that the Gundam wanted its pilot to live. After Quatre exited the mobile suit, it walked off by itself into the enemy forces before self-destructing, decimating the enemy's numbers and allowing Duo and Wufei to escape with their gundams in tow.
OZ recovered the Sandrock's remains, but made no effort to repair the machine. Eventually Sally Po lead a solo mission to destroy what was left of the gundam, sneaking into the hanger where the remains were being stored and covering them with explosive charges. As fate would have it, Sally discovered the Sandrock at the same time as the Maganac Corps had, briefly engaging them before detonating the charges. Surprisingly, even in its damaged state, the Sandrock survived the explosions. After escaping from OZ forces, Sally Po conceded the Sandrock's remains to the Maganac Corps, in hopes they would be able to re-unite the broken gundam with its pilot someday.
Quatre would eventually return to Earth, where he would later learn the Maganac Corps had found and restored the Sandrock. The young pilot journeyed alone through the desert in hopes of retrieving his Gundam, only to discover the Maganac Corps' headquarters under attack by OZ forces. Quatre managed to locate Sandrock in the nick of time, leading the Maganac Corps against the attacking OZ forces.
Realizing the battle had moved into space and joined by former Sanc Kingdom soldier Lucretia Noin, Quatre once again left the Earth, this time bringing Sandrock along with him. While the machine had been restored, the Sandrock had been constructed for land-based warfare, and was largely unsuitable for combat in outer space. Despite this, Quatre took the Sandrock into a number of battles, where despite its decreased effectiveness, it managed to hold out until they managed to make contact with the spaceship Peacemillion, where the former Gundam engineer Howard ordered the Sandrock to be refit for outer space combat, resulting in the Gundam Sandrock Kai.
In other series
The Gundam Sandrock has a brief cameo in Gundam EXA during the After Colony chapter, it was destroyed by Ex's Extreme Gundam in his attempt to cause a great disturbance that would destroy the AC world.
- The first design of Gundam Sandrock was to follow the nationality trend from Mobile Fighter G Gundam. Gundam Sandrock's design was Arabian and it was to use a large round shield similar to one used by XXXG-01S Shenlong Gundam.
- Unlike the other 4 Gundams, Hajime Katoki's Endless Waltz redesign of the original Gundam Sandrock has no differences from its standard Sandrock Kai version, beyond a different paint scheme.
- In both Super Robot Wars Z2 games, the Sandrock and its upgrade both when fully upgraded (as its Full upgrade bonus boosts its armor even further), boast one of the highest if not the highest armor values of any mech in the game, surpassing many Super Robots, even Mazinger Z and Big O (super robots known for their toughness).
- The original 1/144 scale Sandrock model kit from the Gundam W series line came packaged with a beam machine gun, which the Sandrock was not armed with until its refit into Sandrock Kai. The model kit does not include the necessary parts to switch the resulting model between Sandrock and Sandrock Kai however.
- Before the Wing Gundam Zero was constructed, Sandrock was possibly the first of the After Colony era Gundams to possess a form of sentience. An example was when it risked its own existence to keep its pilot alive then sacrificed itself.