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Toys / BB Senshi Sangokuden

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BB Senshi Sangokuden (BB戦士三国伝) is a toyline created by Bandai, commemorating the 20th anniversary of SD Gundam, and going from 2007 to 2011.

A continuation of the long-running BB Senshi line of SD Gundam models, this series also draws upon Romance of the Three Kingdoms for its characters, whose designs are all based on classic Gundam models from the Universal Century to the semi-recent Gundam Wing and G Gundam. So far, the story has been divided into three chapters: Fuuun Gouketsu Hen, Eiyuu Gekitotsu Hen and Senjin Kettou Hen. Expanding on this is the sidestory Sangokuden Gaiden: Buyou Gekitou Roku, and an Animated Adaptation, SD Gundam Sangokuden Brave Battle Warriors, (SDガンダム三国伝 BraveBattleWarriors) which aired after Sgt. Frog, and can be found on YouTube. The anime also had its own sidestory manga titled Brave Battle Warriors Genesis, which had four story arcs that focused on Ryuubi, Ryofu, Sou Sou, and Sonsaku.

Note: This article uses the Japanese version of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, and as such "Cao Cao" = "Sousou", "Liu Bei" = "Ryuubi", "Sun Quan" = "Sonken", as the English dub uses those names(Ironically, the subtitles use the original names).

Not to be confused with Dynasty Warriors: Gundam, which stars Gundams in Dynasty Warriors gameplay. Also has nothing to do with SD Gundam World Sangoku Soketsuden, other than Sangoku Soketsuden being a Spiritual Successor of sorts to Sangokuden.

BB Senshi Sangokuden provides examples of the following tropes:

  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: Brave Battle Warriors mixes cel shaded CGI characters (usually leading ones) with normally animated ones, leading instantly to speculation that anyone not in CGI is not getting a model kit made. Kanpei Gundam turns from cel to CGI in his debut episode.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: Enjutsu Zssa's final moments get dragged out quite a bit. Then his body gets reused as powerup armor.
  • Amplified Animal Aptitude: The horses of the Nanban Kibatai are bred and trained to traverse the implausible terrain of the untamed Southern regions.
  • Anachronism Stew: Ignoring the whole robot angle for a second, you've got characters armed with swords, spears, polearms mostly, and bows and throwing blades for ranged combat, alongside machine guns, BFGs, mobile artillery... there's also Sekitoba turning into a motorcycle, Kannei's jetski, the list goes on.
  • Animated Adaptation:
    • In the form of The Movie, double-billed with the fifth Sgt. Frog movie.
    • And an animated series following The Movie (in 15-minute episodes) is now on air.
  • Bling of War:
    • Nearly every set has gold parts (two notable exceptions, Shiba-I and Shuuyu, are the tacticians). A few deluxe sets up the ante with vaccuum metallised gold.
    • Shuuyu IS Bling of War, considering that his actor is the Hyaku-Shiki.
  • Bloodless Carnage: There is no blood in Brave Battle Warriors, even when wounds are visible. Granted, everybody's a mech...
    • Adverted in the manga series.
  • Brick Joke: Reactions over one of Ryubi Gundam's twin katanas being "forgotten" for the anime were mixed, but the anime's final arc even goes on to omit one of the twin Phoenix swords that Sousou Gundam gets.
  • Butt-Monkey: Chouhi is pretty much the Butt-Monkey around these parts. Though in Brave Battle Warriors, Sonken Dendrobium is openly mocked by pretty much everybody, since he has yet to level up.
  • Camp Gay: The Chou Trio, who speak with overly effeminate overtones and in Brave Battle Warriors, have body language to match.
  • Combining Mecha: from the (heavily reimagined) Yellow Turban brothers to Shuu Neue Ziel with the Black Gyokuji and three sons of Shiba-I.
  • Cool Horse: Practically everyone, at least implied so.
    • Ryofu Tallgeese has the Sekitoba, which turns into a bike.
    • Chou-un Gundam has the Hieisen.
    • Shouretsutei Ryuubi Gundam has the Tekiro.
    • Everyone else gets the generic Hakugin Ryuuseiba, identical to Hieisen.
    • There's also the Nanban Kibatai, Moukaku Gundam's mounted cavalry.
    • The anime introduces Sousou's Zetsuei, a sharp, jet black affair.
  • Cool Shades: Kan-U Gundam, Sonken Gundam, Sosaku Physalis and Sonken Zephyrantes actually have these incorporated into their design. The Shuuyu Hyakushiki model includes an alternate sticker for the eyes intended to invoke this.
  • Deal with the Devil: Heavily invoked when Shiba-En Zaku II tries to summon Shuu Neue-Ziel.
  • Death by Origin Story: Played straight in both the manga and anime. Roshoku GM Cannon and Touken GM, we hardly knew ye.
  • Dragons Up the Yin Yang: Seiryu and the Shou kingdom consistently sticks dragons on everything.
  • Dramatic Irony: The Battle of the War Gods Comic World and manga utilizes this heavily with Souhi and Shiba-i. While Souhi sees Shiba-i a trusted advisor, anyone who's read Clash of the Heroes knows he's actually trying to fulfil the Armageddon chapter of the G Records.
  • Expansion Pack Past: Pretty much the point of the Spin-Off Sangokuden Gaiden.
  • Expy:
  • The Four Gods: As symbols and motifs for the different factions instead of actual characters.
    • Seiryuu, in blue, represents the kingdom of Shou and Ryuubi Gundam.
    • Suzaku, in red, represents the kingdom of Giga and Sousou Gundam.
    • Byakko, in yellow rather than white, represents the kingdom of Gou and Sonken Gundam.
    • Genbu, in purple rather than black, represents Toutaku Zaku's unnamed forces (though their flag carries the kanji for his name. And the soldiers are all in green for some reason.)
  • Four Is Death: The Nanban Four Kings, based on the Walter, Grand, Heavens Sword and Master Gundams from G Gundam.
    • The Four Perils in the Legend arc. They were born from the pieces of darkness and are the key to resurrecting Shuu as Shuu Destroy.
  • Gratuitous English: the anime trades the Fuun Gekitotsu etc. subtitle for "Brave Battle Warriors."
  • Heel–Face Turn: Several. Most of them even keep the motif of whichever faction they defected from (see The Four Gods above). With the notable exception of Kyou-I F91, who goes through an Expository Design Change.
  • Historical Beauty Update: This may be the only Three Kingdoms adaptation that DOESN'T depict Zhang Fei and Meng Huo as The Big Guy Boisterous Bruisers. And Dong Zhuo is above average in size but NOT fat.
  • Historical In-Joke: The descendants of Sima Yi may have won in the end, but here they've only seized control of a dark version of the Imperial Seal, and it's not been doing them any favors..
  • Homage: The characters (and some MacGuffins) draw their design not only from classic Gundams, but Koei's treatment of the Three Kingdoms characters in all their Dynasty Warriors games. Lu Bu's pheasant feathers? Ryofu Tallgeese has 'em. Ma Chao's wild hair? Bachou Blue Destiny has ARTICULATED hair. Sun Ce's giant tonfa? Wait till you see what Sonsaku Physalis' shoulder boosters double up as.
  • Mega Neko:
    • Sonken Gundam's Goutaitei upgrade involves the Kourinpaku, a massive tiger-shaped coat of arms.
    • Apparently the gate of Korou Fortress is shaped like one.
  • Merchandise-Driven: Reaches an egregious level when the new Kiba Breaker toyline, featuring our heroes on motorised mounts that are basically Weaponised Cars with horse heads, make it into the anime.
  • Mid-Season Upgrade:
    • Invoked at different points with Ryuubi Gundam, Sousou Gundam, Koumei Re-GZ, Sonken Gundam, Ryofu Tallgeese and Shiba-I Sazabi.
    • The anime does something similar after Tengyokugai is awakened and a brief Time Skip is invoked - our heroes use the time to upgrade into Ryousou (Dragon-Armor) Ryubi, Ogasou (Demon Tusk-Armor) Kan-U, Raisou (Thunder-Armor) Chouhi, Gurensou (Red-Mantle) Sousou and Mokousou (Tiger-Armor) Sonken. All this is placed chronologically before the ones stated above.
  • Military Mashup Machine: Lampshaded with Moukaku Gundam's elephant cavalry (the use of elephants in war is Older Than Feudalism) that transform into tanks (their more contemporary equivalent).
  • Mooks: The Butaihei, modelled after the RX-79 GM (for Shou, Gou, Giga), Zaku-1 (Toutaku Zaku and maybe Giga), and Leo (Ryofu Tallgeese's personal army). Moukaku Gundam has the Nanban Kibatai.
  • Mythology Gag: For starters...
    • Shouretsutei Ryuubi resembles the Hakuryu Taitei Gundam, acknowleging the nobility of his bloodline
    • Chou-un, the youngest of the Five Shou Generals, being based on the V2 Gundam
    • Bachou's Red Eyes, Take Warning mirrors the effect of the Blue Destiny EXAM system
    • Moukaku, bearing the title Ashurao, not only resembles the Gundam Ashurao but mimics the Ass Kicking Pose normally adopted by Shining or G-Gundam in their boxart
    • Shukuyuu is known to fly into a Berserker Rage just like Allenby
    • Sonsaku Physalis is possessed by Shuu Neue Ziel late in the storyline - both are based on Anavel Gato's mecha
    • At one point, Sonsaku and Shuuyu debate about battlefield tactics, specifically asking Shuuyu to develop a strategy that doesn't risk the lives of half of Sonsaku's men. Shuuyu's response is that Sonsaku keeps asking for the imposssible. Sonsaku's response is directly lifted from Mu La Flaga's catchphrase.
      Sonsaku: You're saying my strategist can't make the impossible possible, then?
  • Omake: This seems to qualify.
  • Only One Female Mold: All the female models are the exact same build, regardless of age, while males come under regular, Toutaku, and Ryofu Tallgeese.
  • Palette Swap:
    • Glaringly obvious with the three factions' footsoldiers, all based on the RX-79 GM and only differentiated by color.
    • Among the named characters, there's Gien Gundam, identical to Kochu Gundam but based on the 'Titans' recolor into which their archetype, the RX-178, was also recolored.
    • Shiba-I Sazabi goes through one for his promotion to Giga Taifu, particularly notable as he gets recolored INTO the Sazabi's normal colors (white to red).
    • This happens more often with the merchandise of course - not just straight recolors, but the Kanpei Gundam and Shuusou Doven Wolf sets include recolored Ryuubi parts.
  • Plug 'n' Play Technology: several cases thanks to the model kits' interchangeability. The Ankoku Gyokuji in particular is capable of combining with different characters to become Expies of One-Winged Angel-class mecha from different Gundam continuities.
  • Power Gives You Wings: Several. Notably Kyou-I Gundam upon assuming his full F-91 form.
  • Punny Name: the Nanban Kibatai. 'Kiba' can mean both 'fang' or 'horseback riding', but this mounted cavalry carries standards with the kanji for 'fang'.
  • The Worf Effect: Kouten The.O, the Yellow Scarf Rebellion's most powerful weapon, goes down almost immediately to make way for Toutaku Zaku's forces.

Alternative Title(s): SD Gundam Sangokuden Brave Battle Warriors