Technology & Combat Characteristics
One of ZAFT's ZGMF-X series of Gundam units build in CE 71 using technology derived from the four captured Alliance's Gundam, the Freedom Gundam has Phase Shift Armor and its armaments include CIWS guns, beam sabers, shield, plasma beam cannons, railguns, and a beam rifle. When the latter three weapons are used simultaneously, the Freedom is said to be in 'Full Burst Mode'. The suit has full flight capabilities in the atmosphere and the back-mounted wings can be deployed in "High Mobility Aerial Tactics (HiMAT) Mode" to enhance its mobility in the atmosphere or in space. It also has an advanced targeting system, the Multi Lock-On System, that allows it to target and fire at multiple enemy units simultaneously. Due to its capabilities and loadout, the suit has a reputation as a specialized 'Mobile Suit Killer', but its high performance resulted in a complicated control system that demands extremely fast reaction speed and spatial awareness from its pilot.
When required, the Freedom Gundam can dock with a support unit, the METEOR unit, for heavier firepower and greater speed. The Freedom Gundam has virtually unlimited combat endurance as it is equipped with Neutron Jammer Canceller and powered by a nuclear reactor. Kira describes the suit as having four times the power of the battery-powered GAT-X105 Strike Gundam. However, what this exactly means is unclear. The Freedom Gundam is meant to operate alongside the ZGMF-X09A Justice Gundam, and they are often based on the warship FFMH-Y101 Eternal which is designed specifically to maintain them. Even in CE 73, the suit is still considered by some people, such as Shinn Asuka, as the most powerful mobile suit out there. Overall, it is one of the Clyne Faction's symbols of power, along with the Eternal, Archangel, and the Justice.
- M100 "Balaena" Plasma Beam Cannon
- A pair of powerful plasma beam cannons located in the wings, they are positioned over the shoulders when in use. Amongst the suit's ranged weaponry, the plasma beam cannon has the highest firepower and longest attack range.
- MA-M20 "Lupus" Beam Rifle
- The Freedom uses a MA-M20 "Lupus" high-energy beam rifle, which is the same rifle used by its companion unit, the ZGMF-X09A Justice Gundam. This beam rifle is stronger than the ones used by the original GAT-X series or the ZGMF-600 GuAIZ as it is powered by the suit's nuclear reactor. Can be stored on the rear skirt armor when not in use.
- MA-M01 "Lacerta" Beam Saber
- The main close combat weapons of the Freedom are two MA-M01 "Lacerta" beam sabers, which are stored above the railguns. As with the beam rifle, the same type of beam sabers are used by the Justice. Since the beam sabers are powered by the suit's nuclear reactor, they have higher output than the ones used by the original GAT-X series. The two beam sabers can be combined into a twin-edged beam saber, and this form is known as 'Ambidextrous Halberd'. Kira rarely used the beam sabers in this form.
- MMI-GAU2 "Picus" 76mm CIWS
- Mounted in the head, the pair of MMI-GAU2 "Picus" 76mm CIWS guns have a high rate of fire but poor penetrating power. Thus, they are mainly used to intercept incoming missiles and enemy units at close range.
- MMI-M15 "Xiphas" Railgun
- A pair of railguns that are mounted on the waist, they have excellent rate of fire and high ammunition capacity. Folded into three parts when not in use, they can be used to deal with situations where beam weapons are ineffective, and are the suit's most powerful solid-based weaponry. They are developed based on the Duel Gundam Assault Shroud's "Shiva" railgun. Although the railguns have foldable grips at the sides, they can be fired without the grips being held in hands.
- Laminated Anti-beam Shield
- Handheld and/or mounted on the left forearm, Freedom's shield has a laminated armor surface instead of an anti-beam coating like on the shields used by most mobile suits. The same type of shield is also used by the Justice Gundam.
Special Equipment and Features
- High Mobility Aerial Tactics (HiMAT) Mode
- The atmospheric flight configuration of the Freedom Gundam, in which its wings are unfolded for higher maneuverability. The Freedom Gundam is capable of flight even in its normal mode, but this form is better suited for aerial dogfighting. HiMAT mode can also be used in space whereby it enhances the Freedom Gundam's AMBAC capabilities.
- Multi Lock-On System
- As implied by its name, this unique system allows Freedom to target multiple enemies and attack them at once. To use this system effectively, the pilot must have high spatial awareness capability, which is rare even among Coordinators. This system can also be used when Freedom docked with the METEOR unit.
- Full Burst Mode
- The name of the attack mode in which Freedom uses its beam rifle, railguns and plasma beam cannons all at once. This mode is often used together with the Multi Lock-On System to destroy a large amount of enemy units at once. However despite its power, Full Burst Mode can only fire in a forward direction.
- As with the other four ZGMF-X series of Gundam units produced in that time period, the Freedom is equipped with a Neutron Jammer Canceller, which counters the effects of the ubiquitous Neutron Jammers and allows these suits to be powered by nuclear reactors. This gives them almost limitless combat endurance, even with Phase Shift armor activated.
- Like the other four units, the Freedom is equipped with Phase Shift armor. Thanks to its N-Jammer Canceller and nuclear reactor the PS armor is capable of being active for a lot longer than on non-nuclear powered suits such as the Strike.
- Operating System
- The Freedom uses the Generation Unsubdued Nuclear Drive Assault Module complex operating system.
- Like the Justice, the Freedom can dock with the powerful METEOR unit, a large mobile weapons platform with powerful thrusters and an even more powerful armament of battleship-caliber beam cannons, large beam swords, and dozens of heavy missile launchers.
In the middle of CE 71, ZAFT created a series of advanced mobile suits based on technology reverse-engineered from the captured Earth Alliance G Project suits. One of these suits is the Freedom, which is the second suit of the ZGMF-X series and can be considered the companion unit of the ZGMF-X09A Justice Gundam.
The Freedom is eventually stolen by Kira Yamato, with the help of Lacus Clyne. Kira rushed to Earth with the stolen suit and came to the rescue of the Archangel at the Battle of JOSH-A. Along with the Archangel, he defected to neutral Orb and fought alongside his old friend Athrun Zala. Later, he returned to space along with the Archangel and Orb battleship Kusanagi, and met up with the support vessel FFMH-Y101 Eternal, which had been stolen by Lacus Clyne and her supporters, led by former ZAFT commander Andrew Waltfeld, and which carried both METEOR units. Athrun and Kira used the METEORs' firepower to thwart an Earth Alliance nuclear missile attack on the PLANTs on the final day of the war. Afterward, Kira battled against Rau Le Creuset and his ZGMF-X13A Providence Gundam. The Freedom was quickly overpowered by the Providence's Dragoon System, however Kira still managed to severely damage the Providence, and destroy it by impaling the cockpit with a beam saber; killing Rau.
After the war, the Freedom was repaired and hidden in a secret underground base in Orb, where it remained for more than two years. It returned to action after an assassination attempt against Lacus Clyne. Kira launched in the Freedom and manages to defeat the assassins' UMF/SSO-3 ASH mobile suits. Later on, the Freedom was used by Kira in two failed attempts to stop the battling between Orb and ZAFT forces. It also destroyed the GFAS-X1 Destroy Gundam in Berlin, killing its pilot, Stella Loussier. Shortly thereafter, Freedom was destroyed by the ZGMF-X56S Impulse Gundam, piloted by Shinn Asuka, during a ZAFT attack against the Archangel called Operation Angel Down. Kira was able to survive the destruction of Freedom when he shut down Freedom's nuclear reactor before losing consciousness, and was rescued by the MBF-02 Strike Rouge, piloted by his sister Cagalli Yula Athha.
ZAFT developed an advanced version of the Freedom, called the ZGMF-X20A Strike Freedom Gundam, which never progressed past the prototype stage due to technical limitations and the Treaty of Junius. The incomplete unit or its plan (it is unknown which) was stolen by the independent faction Terminal, that then modified the suit into a personal unit for Kira, who piloted it after the Freedom was destroyed.
In Other Media
- The Freedom appears in the first episode, fighting a custom MSK-008 Dijeh. Coincidentally, both units were the second mobile suit their original pilots used.
Gundam Video Games
- In Battle Assault 3 featuring Gundam SEED, Freedom's ultimate attack is named as "Multy Beam Shot" instead of "Fullburst" in this game.
- In SD Gundam G Generation Advance, Rau Le Creuset pilots the Freedom for two stages and is part of a secret event between him and Mu La Flaga.
Crossover Video Games
- Together with its partner unit, ZGMF-X09A Justice Gundam, Freedom has no Neutron Jammer Canceller in Super Robot Wars J. Thus, both Justice and Freedom only gain 5 point energy refill per turn instead of 15% of their total energy, as in other Super Robot Wars series where Justice and Freedom has a Neutron Jammer Canceller installed on them.
- As the entry of Gundam SEED Destiny in Super Robot Wars series, Freedom is no longer considered as a "broken" unit in the game as it lost most of its attack that exist in the previous series. However, Freedom can still be categorized as one of the best units in the beginning of the game (especially in Super Robot Wars Z).
- In Super Robot Wars L due to changed events in the series, the Freedom is not destroyed by the Impulse, but Kira returns with the Strike Freedom with no sign of the old mech to be seen. The reason for this is not known, but it may imply in the game, the Freedom was directly upgraded to it instead of it being a separate suit.
- The Real Grade (RG) model kit of Freedom has 14 HiMAT wings instead of 10. In its RG model kit, the black coloured section of Freedom's largest wings is separated with the blue coloured section.
- Freedom is one of the protagonists in The Great Battle Full Blast, alongside with Kamen Rider Decade and Ultraman Mebius. As the series' standard, Freedom (as well as other mobile weapon) is sentient robot in this game. He's a hero who fight against invasion of Zeon-ZAFT Alliance, and bearer of the name Gundam from one of the legendary heroes (although he prefers to be called just "Freedom", possibly a reference to the fact that the word "Gundam" is rarely used in Cosmic Era series).
Notes and Trivia
- According to some related books, the mock battle between Strike and Freedom proves that there was hardly any difference in power between the two mobile suits, and that the "power" in Kira's statement is not about Freedom's instantaneous output. There are also other claims such as the one in the GUNDAM SEED & ASTRAY MODELING MANUAL Vol.2 (Page 14, released on 2003 by Media Works) which noted that Kira's statement meant that Freedom Gundam has four times the performance of Strike Gundam.
- Freedom's head crest displays the text "X-10A DIECI", which is a reference to its model number. Dieci means ten in Italian.
- In Mobile Suit Gundm SEED ORIGINAL SOUND TRACK III, released on September 21, 2003, there is a track named "Freedom Self-Destructs". Considering some other track titles are based on events from episodes that haven't aired when it was released ("Dominion Sinks", "Flay's Death"), Freedom Gundam's self-destruction in the final episodes may have been planned at some point.
- There is a typo on the prototype of Metal Build 1/100 Freedom Gundam model, where it is written that its model number series is XGMF instead of ZGMF. However, this error was fixed in the final products of the model.
- For the HD Remaster of Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, Freedom's Full Burst Mode is reanimated, particularly to show the railguns firing in bursts rather than as one single shot, and also to show exhaust smoke after firing. In addition, Freedom's CIWS were also fired during Full Burst. Its catapult launch sequence is also reanimated to remove the wings' double flapping during take off.
- In some games, the pair of thrusters behind the Xiphias railguns are active when flying such as in the OMNI Vs ZAFT and Extreme Vs series but go unused in most other material.
- In Never Ending Tomorrow, the Freedom uses the thrusters located in its shoulders to strafe while boosting.
- ↑ Master Grade Freedom Gundam Ver. 2.0 (Dramatic Combination: MG x Figure-Rise Bust) model kit manual