Technology & Combat Characteristics
A 3rd-Generation Gundam, Exia is designed to be a close quarters combat (CQC) type mobile suit (MS). The unit is the successor to GNY-001 Gundam Astraea and one of the predecessors to GN-0000 00 Gundam. Much of Exia's design was heavily influenced by the Astraea Gundam. What this means is that even though Exia's weapons are specialized for CQC, its basic performance is still that of a general purpose mobile suit. This is mostly evident as Exia is the only Gundam out of the four main 3rd Generation units that retain a MS frame that has human-like range of motion. The lack of this range of motion on the other three units is not considered a weakness but rather because it was deemed unnecessary.
Gundams (and by extension other GNMS) benefit from the weight reducing effects of GN Particles, and this effect can also be used for weight alteration of various body parts. Because of this, the pilot can freely control the suit's inertia, influencing maneuverability when it is in the airborne. In space, this ability is transformed into Active Mass Balance Auto Control (AMBAC). As such, the legs actually never need to "walk" when moving.
As Exia was designed as a close quarters unit, there is a need for its movements to be as human-like as possible. In order to achieve this, Exia was designed with joints that have the same range of motion as a human. To ensure that Exia's range of movement is not affected, its armor is separated into much finer pieces than the other Gundams. The latter trait also means that portions of the internal structure is revealed during certain postures. Although this lowers Exia's overall defensive ability, it served Exia as it has the lowest "being hit" rate among the four main 3rd Generation Gundams. Exia's mobility also exceeds that of other conventional mobile suits of the time with the exception of customized high speed variants.
Externally, the most eye catching feature of Exia is the numerous purple cables on its body; especially the cables that extend from the shoulders to the arms that are not present in the other Gundams. Named GN Power Lines, their main purpose is to transport large amounts of GN Particles to and from various parts of the body. As Exia frequently engages the enemy in close quarters, its higher amount of exposed cables allows it to have finer posture control than the other Gundams. This design optimizes mobility at the cost of defensive capability and is considered a liability, this issue was later fixed in the Exia R2 as the GN Power Lines are now internalized within the armor.
Appearance wise, Gundams have heads that are human-like. The head of Gundams are said to be similar to a human brain as they both control the functions of the body. Exia's head design is modeled after the pilot helmet worn by earlier Gundam Meisters. This was done to cement the belief of the Meister being the Gundam. Third Generation Gundams like Exia also possess head antennas that control particle distribution, though most of the actual particle control responsibility is taken up by the antennas at the shoulders and neck. The head also has other head antennas that function as communication and sensor devices while at the same time also containing a blackbox device used for establishing a link with Veda.
Its GN Condensers also can show visually the amount of particles it holds as well as the particle compression rate it is currently using. This ability is also used for secret communication with friendly forces. The total energy output of Gundams like Exia is extremely powerful compared to other conventional suits of the time. Billy Katagiri estimated that Exia has approximately six times the output of the Flag based on the impact damage analyzed on Graham Aker's suit after his first encounter with Exia.
One of Exia's important intended roles is to deal with any traitor units that use GN Field technology. To counter any GN Field usage, Exia's solid swords are all designed with the ability to easily pierce them on contact. Early on, this role was to be shared by both Exia and Virtue Physical but after the latter's usage was discounted by Veda in favor of Virtue Particle, the task fell solely on Exia. The change in plans also meant that Exia's pilot would shoulder a higher level of responsibility.
When heavier firepower and defense is needed, Exia can receive combat support from GNR-001E GN Arms Type-E and the Assault Container. The GN Arms Type E itself is a customized transformable fighter, with mid-range beam weaponry and melee weapons themed after Exia's weapons silhouette. When greater power is needed, Exia and GN Arms can combine to become a mobile armor. Exia's GN Drive docks right into the MA to power the weapons platform. If a situation arises where greater speed is needed, Exia can be equipped with its own specialized armor, the Avalanche Pack, which would be later upgraded into the Avalanche ` Pack. The Assault Container works in conjunction with the GN Arms and Exia as a miniature armed MS carrier. It was designed to dock with both Exia and GN Arms for atmospheric entry and exit missions. It's heavily armored and has enough fire power to match an entire ESF battlefleet.
In addition, the Exia has a "GN Drive Burst Mode" function that can temporarily increase the output of the GN Drive and hence the ability of the suit, but it was rarely used due to its instability. It would later be used by the Exia Repair II that has inherited the function. Exia's overall capabilities can be enhanced through the power of the Trans-Am System.
- GN Beam Sabers
- Mounted on the back of the shoulders. The beam saber is a hilt with the ability to activate a beam blade by generating a positron field filled with GN Particles. While the beam saber has a high power rating, one disadvantage is that their performance can be decreased by surrounding atmospheric conditions or methods of beam diffusion.
- GN Beam Daggers
- Attach to Exia's waist, the GN Beam Daggers shares the same basic system as that of the GN Beam Sabers but are adjusted to have a shorter blade length that makes them harder to diffuse. Setsuna has developed a habit of throwing them at distant enemies while in combat. This weapon type became obsolete in the future as the ability to manipulate beam saber length blades was achieved.
- GN Long Blade & GN Short Blade
- Named as GN Long Blade and GN Short Blade respectively, these are Exia's customized solid swords that differ in size from the main GN Sword and are the weapons that had the longest development time among all of Exia's armaments. Because the GN Sword has difficulty doing damage without a certain amount of swing and space due to it's size, these were designed in order to give the Exia solid blades that can be used in a variety of situations that the GN Sword has difficulty with. They were stated to possess the ability to cut through 2 meters of conventional E-Carbon armor. Like the GN Beam Daggers, Setsuna occasionally uses the GN Short Blade as a throwing knife.
- A shield mounted on Exia's left arm that is made out of extremely strong and durable E-Carbon At first glance, the shield can be thought of as unnecessary as it is made of the exact same material as of the body's main armor. However, due to the flexibility of the arm, the mounted shield can help to absorb shock from attacks. On the surface of the shield, a GN Field can be generated that would confer better defenses to the user. As long as Exia continues to receive GN Particle energy supply, conventional weapons would not be able to penetrate the GN Shield. The shield also possesses an "expansion" mode where the left and right blue sections move outwards and increase the defense area the shield covers, but the drawbacks of this mode are increased particle consumption as well as a decrease in the overall defense property of the shield due to the increased area that GN Field element covers. Although the shield is extremely effective against conventional weapons, its strength is not enough to defend against stronger attacks such as GN beam weapons and as a result, has been destroyed by these attacks on a few occasions.
- GN Sword
- A solid GN blade attached to a miniature forearm shield, which serves as the Exia's primary weapon, and the largest blade amongst the Seven Swords. It works by applying GN Particles over the solid sword which greatly increases the sharpness and cutting power though the sword can still be used when there are no particles applied to it. Although the blade is considered to have great destructive power, there are situations where it cannot be used due to its size. The GN Sword can also be used in Rifle Mode, whereby the blade returns to its idle folded state exposing the muzzle of a beam rifle. The Rifle Mode was created to avoid the equipping of excessive armaments on Exia, and thus enhance the ease of movement which the unit's systems depend heavily on.
- GN Vulcans
- Small guns installed in both arms of Gundam Exia. Purely secondary weapons, these low powered weapons are equipped with main purpose of diversion. While the GN Sword's Rifle Mode has high power, it requires a transformation action and can't response instantly, thus the GN Vulcans were installed to counter this weakness. Though the power of their beams are weak, their high firing rate means that they can be a threat to conventional weapons that lack E-Carbon armor. This is also very useful when engaging small, fast, maneuverable targets such as GN Fangs and missiles.
- Proto GN Sword
- As its name suggests, it is a prototype of Exia's GN Sword, and is the first GN particle-lined physical blade created by Celestial Being. Even at the time of the construction of this weapon, it has already been planned for a rifle function to be included and the "Proto" part of the name refers to the incompleteness of the weapon as its still in development. It was used by Exia during its basic performance test as the GN Sword had yet to be completed.
Special Equipment & Features
- Usable after the GN Drive's blackbox is unlocked due to the system trap.
- The operating system used by the Gundams that relies on a constant link to Veda. After the Veda link to the Gundams were permanently cut, the Ptolemaios team were forced to switch to an alternate and inferior stand alone system that they independently developed.
For Exia's history and exploits, please go to Setsuna F. Seiei's page.
Notes & Trivia
- Exia is derived from "exousia", the Koine Greek for "authority."
- The damage the Exia sustains in Setsuna's battle against Graham at the end of the first season could possibly be a tribute to the RX-78-2 Gundam's Last Shooting and the ending stages of the 7th Space War which Lancerow Dawell's and Jamil Neate's units (MAN-002 Febral and the GX-9900 Gundam X respectively) as they both lose their head and left arm in a battle against their rival.
- While the concepts were still in development for the show, Gundam Exia was codenamed "Pawn Gundam". Like the final version, Pawn Gundam was supposed to be a close range oriented machine and very little special abilities but it was not meant to possess the Seven Sword (which was given to Knight Gundam or Dynames concept initially). Later in the series, the Pawn Gundam would get an upgraded powerup system of sorts (the idea eventually evolved into the Trans-Am system and would become standard feature in the finalized version). After it received its power-up ability, the Pawn Gundam would have taken the team leadership role away from Knight Gundam.
- Exia is not listed in Gundam Memories: Tatakai no Kioku, while Exia Repair II and Avalanche Exia are listed. Both are listed as "short" units.
- Exia appears exclusively in the PSP release of Gundam Vs Gundam. While it is able to throw its GN Blades an unlimited number of times, it lacks Trans-Am.
- Strangely enough in Super Robot Wars Z2, Exia's primary weapon, the GN Sword, is the weakest among the seven swords.
- Exia is one of four selected mobile suits(others being 00 Gundam, Strike Gundam, and RX-78-2 Gundam) for the Entry Grade model kit lineup
- Staff members have stated the girl who is with Setsuna in the first opening isn't Marina, but a 'personification of Exia' (their eyes and hair color is different). For Setsuna, the Exia is the symbol of "peace".
- ↑ 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 Master Grade 1/100 GN-001 Gundam Exia manual
- ↑ Mobile Suit Gundam 00V Chapter 1
- ↑ Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 1 Episode 3 "The Changing World"
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Mobile Suit Gundam Season 1 Episode 25 "Setsuna"
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Mobile Suit Gundam 00P File No 21 "Swift Current"
- ↑ Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 2 Episode 25 "Rebirth"
- ↑ 300 Years Later sourcebook
- ↑ 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.5 8.6 8.7 8.8 8.9 HG 1/144 GN-001 Gundam Exia manual
- ↑ 9.0 9.1 Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season One Episode 3 The Changing World
- ↑ Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 1 Episode 6 "Seven Swords"
- ↑ 11.0 11.1 Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 1 Episode 19 "Bonds"
- ↑ Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 1 Episode 25 "Setsuna"
- ↑ 13.0 13.1 Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Season 1 Episode 21 "Road to Ruin"