The NRX-044 Asshimar is a transformable mobile armor from the series Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam. It also appears in the anime Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ and the manga MSV-R:The Return of Johnny Ridden. It was most notably piloted by Buran Blutarch.
Technology and Combat Characteristics
This new suit introduced before the Gryps Conflict by the Earth Federation Forces and the Titans was a truly revolutionary suit despite not being the strongest. The Asshimar was an experimental transformable mobile armor developed at the Oakland Newtype Lab. It was the first suit to be able to fly in the atmosphere of a planet on its own power without the help of a sub-flight system. The development of Asshimar was started by the Earth Federation Forces as the NRX-044[R] Prototype Asshimar TR-3 [Kehaar] and later continued in form of the NRX-044 Prototype Asshimar TR-3 [Kehaar].
It has additional sub mono-eye sensors along with the main camera sensor. Because its range was restricted to within the atmosphere, a thermonuclear jet engine is used as its main propulsion system. This system uses air for propellant, making it fuel-efficient while effectively giving the Asshimar a large cruising capacity. The engine air intakes are located in the upper thighs of the leg units, which are mainly closed by shutters during MS mode. Additionally, its MA mode possesses excellent aerodynamics as a lifting body, allowing for long-haul flights. The head unit is equipped with a multiple antenna rod and blade antenna provided with differential pressure sensors. The landing gear, which is provided in the chest armor and leg units, is used in conjunction with underside fuselage nozzles for hovering during take-off.
While not as powerful as its prototype, the production model of the Asshimar, which saw action during the Gryps Conflict was still a formidable machine. With magnet coating technology installed in the transformation system, the Asshimar was able to transform between its two modes in only 0.5 seconds. Also, it sported thick armor and was easily able to withstand most standard firearms used by mobile suits. However, the chest frame is left vulnerable to attack during transformation. The Asshimar was limited to fielding its custom beam rifle which was mounted on the main body in mobile armor mode, limiting its usefulness. Nevertheless the Asshimar proved to be a powerful, versatile, and deadly unit and was stationed on various Earth Federation bases on Earth.
- Large Beam Rifle
- This custom beam rifle is unique to the Asshimar, it is able to fire single shots and burst shots. It was designed with aerodynamics in mind. It has high destructive power due to greater beam convergence rate.
Developed in the early part of the Gryps Conflict, the NRX-044 Asshimar's first known sortie was a single unit against attacking the Karaba-held Kennedy spaceport alongside regular military RMS-106 Hizack mobile suit riding on Base Jabbers subflight craft. The Asshimar piloted by Buran Blutarch proved very capable, easily out-maneuvering even the AEUG's advanced RX-178 Gundam Mk-II and MSN-00100 Hyaku Shiki mobile suits. Though the Asshimar would be damaged and driven off thanks to inventive tactics, both Karaba and the AEUG would suffer heavy losses.
Buran Blutarch would continue using his Asshimar in pursuit of the AEUG's Garuda-class, launching his mobile suit from his own Garuda. The Asshimar would be destroyed on one of these missions and Buran killed inside it. One captured unit is used by AEUG ace Gabriel Zola to attack the Kamchatka base.
In the year UC 0088, during the First Neo Zeon War, several NRX-044 Asshimar mobile suits would be stationed at Earth Federation bases that would be captured by Axis Neo Zeon forces. This gave the Neo Zeon forces access to the Asshimar mobile suits.
The NRX-044 Asshimar mobile suit would still be used by the Earth Federation in the year UC 0090. Several units served as part of the Mobile Suit Air Force Company, one of which was piloted by company leader Broglie Ligera, a man who served as the pilot of an RB-79 Ball during the One Year War. Three of these Asshimars would be used to reinforce a supply base under attack from raiders using mobile suits. Broglie Ligera would duel a blue Gelgoog unit that he seems to recognize as being piloted by Uma Lightning. It is succeeded by the RAS-96 Anksha.
Notes & Trivia
- In the Japanese version, the famous Asshimar pilot Buran is known for crying out as he dies "Asshimar Gaa!!!", which suggests the strong faith he held in this very versatile and high-end machine.
- In Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny, one of the Gundams, the ZGMF-X31S Abyss, bears close resemblance to the Asshimar, while in Mobile Armor mode, though the two machines differ greatly in function.
- The head section of the Asshimar bears close resemblance to the MS-09R-2 Rick Dom II from Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket & Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory.
- The Asshimar appears in Model Suit Gunpla Builders Beginning G in the first gunpla battle in episode A.
- In the SD Gundam G Generation series, the Asshimar was given vulcan guns in its head. above its main optical camera.
- Although designed as an atmospheric mobile armor, at least one Asshimar was seen being used in space as part of the Glemy Faction.