Eventually we all feel the need to start over. To try again. To take what we know and apply it in a new way. Clearly the guys and girls at Sunrise felt the same. After 4 TV shows, two movies and plenty of manga, they decided to start over. To take the Gundam franchise in a new direction, to draw in new fans as well as to give long time fans something new to enjoy.
And they did it again. And again. And again. And again.
All of these time lines are completely disjoint. Well, apart from… we’ll save that for later. Some of the time lines borrow elements from others, but they are their own self contained worlds with their own characters, history, politics and technology. So let’s have a look at these time lines and consider the TV shows, OVAs and movies within them.
All the original TV shows and movies, from the 1979 original, to the ’80s and early ’90s took place in this timeline. Closest to real life of any of the timelines, Universal Century tells the story of a time when humans have moved into space in huge colonies after polluting the Earth. All of Earth and the colonies, collectively known as the Earth Sphere are ruled by the cruel and selfish Earth Federation. Over time, numerous groups oppose the Federation, and the resulting wars form the basis of the various Gundam TV shows.
- MS IGLOO (2004, 2006) – 6 episode OVA
- Mobile Suit Gundam (1979) – 43 episode TV show
- Mobile Suit Gundam I, II, III (1981, 1982) – Three movies retelling Mobile Suit Gundam
- Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team (1996) – 12 episode OVA
- Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team Miller’s Report (1998) Movie retelling key events of 08th MS Team
- Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket (1989) – 6 episode OVA
- Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory (1991) – 13 episode OVA
- Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: The Last Blitz of Zeon (1992) – Movie retelling Stardust Memory
- Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (1985) – 50 episode TV show
- Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam: A New Translation I, II, III (2005, 2006) – Three movies retelling Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam
- Mobile Suit Gundam Double Zeta (1986) -47 episode TV show
- Mobile Suit Gundam: Char’s Counterattack (1988) – Movie
- Mobile Suit Gundam F91 (1991) – Movie
- Mobile Suit Victory Gundam (1993) – 51 episode TV show
Each of the Alternate Universe timelines offers a different take on the Gundam universe, from super robot fighting to a post-apocalyptic battle to live.
Most of mankind have left the Earth in ruins to live in space. To decide who governs the Earth, the colonies take part in a Gundam Fight tournament every 4 years. Sending their nations prize fighter and immaculately designed Gundam to Earth to battle for supremacy.
- Mobile Fighter G Gundam (1994) – 49 episode TV show
To counter overpopulation of the Earth humankind move into giant colonies. However the colonies are ruled by the tyrannous United Earth Sphere Alliance. After years of oppression and the assassination of the respected colony representative Heero Yuy, a small group of rebels decide to fight back.
- New Mobile Report Gundam Wing (1995) – 49 episode TV show
- New Mobile Report Gundam Wing (1997, 1998) – 3 episode OVA, later compiled into a movie
(Note: released in the US and Europe as Mobile Suit Gundam Wing)
The Earth based Old Federation and their colony equivalent, the Space Revolution Army, fought a dreadful war that resulted in the dropping of hundreds of colonies onto Earth, causing a nuclear winter and killing the majority of the Earth’s population. How will a bunch of travelling scavengers survive in this post-apocalyptic world, and is the war really over?
- After War Gundam X
(Note: also known as New Mobile Century Gundam X)
Life in an early 20th century like Earth was pretty simple, until an army from the moon arrive, trying to find a new place for their people to live. With far more advanced technology, these Moonrace effortlessly counter any Earth Milita resistance, but following the discovery of a buried Mobile Suit everything changes. If there’s more to history than we know, perhaps Earth Milita might just be able to fight back.
- Turn A Gundam (1999) – 50 episode TV show
- Turn A Gundam: Earth Light and Moonlight Butterfly (2002) – two movies retelling Turn A Gundam
Humankind has evolved. Genetic engineering has given birth to Coordinators, humans with perfect genes. Persecuted by Naturals, humans who were not enhanced, the Coordinators are forced to move to space. Tensions were always high, but when a farming colony was destroyed my nuclear weapons, war is declared between the two races.
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED (2002) – 50 episode TV series
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Special Edition (2004) – 6 episode TV series retelling Gundam SEED
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED DESTINY (2004) – 50 episode TV series
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED DESTINY Special Edition (2006) – 4 episode TV series retelling Gundam SEED DESTINY
- Mobile Suit Gundam SEED C.E. 73 STARGAZER (2006) – 3 episode OVA
- Gundam SEED Movie (currently untitled) – Movie, release date unknown