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Gundam Development Project

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The Gundam Development Project is a military design program in the mythos of the long-running Japanese franchise Mobile Suit Gundam. Most of the machines presented here are focal points of the thirteen-episode OVA series Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory, which takes place a few years after the conclusion of the original Gundam television show.

Gundam Development Project models

History of the Gundam Development Project models

Gdp-anaheim-journal

A member of the Gundam Development Project (circa UC 0083) in Anaheim Journal.

As described in the Gundam Officials, Gundam 0083 and MS encyclopedia, on January 1st, UC 0080, the One Year War came to an end. This was a relief on both sides, because the long war had drained resources and lives. During the postwar reconstruction effort, the Federation began to scale back funding in an effort to regain lost revenue while fighting the war. But the military argued that they should be exempt from the budget cuts, because there were still remnants of the Principality of Zeon unaccounted for. The Federation agreed, and in October UC 0081 passed the Federal Forces Reconstruction Plan in an effort to get the military back into shape. One week later, the Gundam Development Project was secretly started as part of the Reconstruction Plan.

During the One Year War, the Federal Forces had been forced to make do with any company willing and able to develop mobile suits for use against the Zeon, but under the supervision of the Admiralty, the production of mobile suits for the Federation was limited to Anahiem Electronics. The Reconstruction Plan rolled out the Birmingham-class battleship, the refitted Salamis-class cruisers, and the refitted Magellan Kai-class battleships, but it was the Gundam type mobile suits that were to be the center of attention. The Federation was so impressed with Anaheim Electronics that they remained the primary supplier of Federation mobile suits even after the Gryps Conflict where Anaheim was believed to have sided with the AEUG.

As a side note, each of the Gundams in the project are named for different genuses in groups of flowers.

RX-78GP00 Blossom

RX-78GP01 Gundam "Zephyranthes"

RX-78GP01-Fb Gundam "Zephyranthes" Full Burnern

RX-78GP02A Gundam "Physalis"

RX-78GP03 Gundam "Dendrobium"

RX-78GP04G Gundam "Gerbera"

The first of these units, the GP-00 "Blossom", proved to be an unbalanced disaster and was destroyed during one of its test runs. The one that proved to be the biggest disaster was the GP-02A "Physallis", which was armed with a nuclear warhead. While the Antarctic Treaty had long since been rendered obsolete, many Zeon remnants who believed that the One Year War still raged on saw that the Gundam was a clear violation of the treaty and sought to punish them for doing so. The resulting theft and attack, known as Operation Stardust, would end with three of the four Gundam prototypes destroyed, part of the United States ravaged by a colony drop and a massive black eye for the Federation. In the end, the entire Gundam Development Project was stricken from the official record, though many of the technologies used by this would be used in future Mobile Suits.

References

Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory
Gundam Century, Minori, 22nd Sep, 1981.
Gundam Century Renewal Version, ISBN / 4-87777-028-3, Kisousha, 15th Mar, 2000.

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