I was born in the late 80s, but I’m proud to say that I am pure 90s kid. I still remember it vividly; those boy bands, bleached hair, cyberpets, grunge music, sagging pans, and a lot of the oddities that became the part of my childhood. And did I mention that I had a few school fights back then?

And I think it’s not just us 90s kids that matured in those years, I could say that the Gundam franchise found a new life in the 90s as well. It was already flying full throttle in the 80s, but the Gundam series changed forever in the later decade. A lot evolved. The stories, characters, the universe, the motif, and even the themes did a slight makeover. On the way people see it, most of the Gundam series today still carry the so-called original mark of the franchise. Most Gundam series, from the mecha to the Char clone are still the legacies of the UC Era. But thanks to the 90s, the Gundam franchise went into a major makeover.

The 90s Marked the End of the UC Era
A scene from the Victory Gundam, the last UC Era series.

In the 80s, the Gundam franchise was always associated with one timeline: The Universal Century, or UC Era. It was characterized with humans populating space, construction of space colonies, and the use of humanoid vehicles known as mobile suits as weapons (fans probably knew that). According to Yoshiyuki Tomino, the first Gundam series was set in 2066 A.D in terms of the real-world timeline. Yet for casual fans like me, the UC Era will forever be associated with Amuro and Char. In fact, they will be the first to flash in my mind when the UC Era was mentioned.

Overall, there were 8 Gundam animes (both OVAs and series) that featured the UC Era from 1980s to the start of the 1990s. The last series to be set in the UC timeline was the Mobile Suit Victory Gundam.

But things don’t look so great for the franchise in the early 90s. The toys and kits sales dropped as the Gundam popularity dwindled. Hence the sponsors forced the creators to come up with a differe