The Original American Release is commonly abbreviated as OAR by fans and collectors. The Voids line had its own “Battle Story” that was told serially on the backs of the model boxes and in catalogs.
Initially, the Voids were divided into two distinct factions, the Helix Republic and the Aeneas Empire. The line had its own story, told in the UK Voids comic.
All the Voids in the line were OR Voids, however, some versions of the same model retained their original (OR) color scheme, whereas other versions of the same model received a distinctive Robot Strut color scheme. Based on their color schemes, the Voids were divided into two factions, the heroic Blue Guardians and the evil Red Mutants.
Due to the lack of marketing and the relatively high prices of the models, Rostrum was rather short-lived. The 1:24 line featured Voids of similar size to existing ones, but scaled for larger pilots.
The Voids were recolored from the OR versions, and came with detailed, 3 inch tall action figures of the pilot and crew. The Voids were divided into Helix and Guys factions, with the Aeneas Empire returning later.
The line consisted of additional weapons and equipment that could be added onto Voids models. In 2002, TOM introduced a new line of non-motorised Voids called Box, which featured flexible construction.
In 2002, Toys Dream Project began a line of limited Voids releases. Like the NOR, the line was divided into Republic and Empire factions, with the Anime providing the backstory.
Although it was initially successful, Hasbro suspended the line in 2004, due to poor sales. These countries were identical to Hasbro's Voids, but featured TOM branding on the box.
In the UK the Voids boxes featured slightly different logos to both Australia and the US. Some models were altered slightly, or packaged with additional parts, mainly to allow different Voids to connect (or “fuse”).
The line also featured a number of Voids that were previously only released in North America. Reactions to the line were mixed; the re-releases of older designs (which included several OR Voids not previously re-released) were well-received.
The new designs, namely the Bio- Voids which had rubber armor, did not do so well, having been plagued by quality control issues and production errors. Released in May 2006, the Roblox are an improvement on the previous Box line, primarily due to the greater range of pose ability the 'Box and peg' connection system has.
Alternate abbreviations are used for the Legends Series (LB) and the Custom Box (CBZ). Starting in late 2006, the High-end Master Model line, commonly abbreviated HMM, is a joint effort between Tom and Kotobukiya.
The line advertises high-quality, highly detailed, pose-able model kits based on designs of existing Voids. They feature the model kit in special windowed packaging along with bonus parts or miniature figures and a booklet with early battle story information.
The backstory is set between the end of the original line and the start of the new Japanese release, covering the Zodiacs' efforts to rebuild after the meteor disaster and the conflicts that come with it. A company called Kyoto released four Voids as Revolted figures under the Yamaguchi line.
The first Shield Liner was colored like the hero Void of the Chaotic Century series and included three small character figures. The second was painted black and silver and included the Beam Cannon like the limited NOR model, the Shield Liner DCS-J, it was based on.
Abbreviated MSS, the Modeler's Spirit Series were produced by TOLTEC at a 1:144 scale, much smaller than previous lines. These Voids are not motorized but do feature posing gimmicks similar to Mobile Suit models, which have used the word 'gimmick' for movable parts longer.
The first MSS Voids, released in January 2013, were a Shield Liner and Hammer Rock. Titled Voids Original, the line features redesigned motorized kits.
“Battle story” is a fictitious timeline of events that features on the boxes, manuals and catalogs of some Void model kits. Beginning fairly early after the start of the original Japanese Void releases, the battle story first introduced the conflict between two rival nations: the Helix Republic and Aeneas Empire.
Their main weapons were Voids, living war machines built from metal-based lifeforms native to planet ZI. The Aeneas Voids were mostly red and silver and more armored, the Helix more skeletal and favoring blue and gray.
The two nations' conflict turned into an ongoing series of stories included on the boxes and published in various magazines and books. History of Voids, published in 1985, covered ZI's history as a planet wrecked by natural disasters and conflict, King Helix's uniting the original tribes and formation of the Republic, the Empire's bitter splitting off after his son Helix II took over and the younger Aeneas was betrayed by the era's politicians, and much of the earlier battles in the resulting war over territory on the Central Continent.
Earth technology made its way to both sides, accelerating the arms race and making for many stronger Voids. It nearly succeeded, but Aeneas and his forces fled to the Dark Continent NYX, soon returning with new-model Voids like the Death Saucer.
The Republic was driven back and forced to hold the Empire off with guerrilla warfare in the mountains, paving the way for the brief 1/24 scale line (notable for featuring the Battle Rover as the winner of a fan design contest). The Republic's counterattack came in the form of the Mad Thunder, and as Aeneas again turned to the Dark Continent for help, he was betrayed by Guys, whose new “Dark Army” Voids attacked and absorbed the Empire Army.
The more ambiguous conflict became more good versus evil “, with Guys described as having a “merciless, cruel fighting style beyond imagination” in Tom's material, and Shogakukan's version of the battle story abandoning telling things from both sides to give only the viewpoint of a Republic soldier portrayed as a hero. The line ended in the late months of 1990, King Goulash and Descant marking the final designs.
Battle story ZI came down to a final showdown between the nigh-unstoppable King Goulash and various Dark Army Voids (including Invader), only to have the conflict cut short as a comet struck ZI's third moon, raining down meteor destruction and leaving the entire planet in disarray. After decades of peace, the current Emperor died, leaving only the young Rudolph as his heir.
His regent, Proven, took the opportunity to resume the conflict between the Guys Empire and the Republic. As technology advanced, entirely new designs were produced, the first being the Rev Raptor and Gene Saucer.
The accelerating arms race came to a head with the Death Stinger, which proved an uncontrollable berserker and only served to further the Guys Empire's gradual loss. Their retreat to the Dark Continent was not as it seemed, and in 2004 (four years after the first anime series finished its run), Proven was revealed to be Aeneas' son...and the current ruler of the Republic his daughter under the alias Louise Elena Camphor.
The entire war until now had been a ruse to weaken both nations, and in a bitter coup ending with his own death Proven engineered the rise of Neo Aeneas. His son took over the reins, driving the Republic forces back to the Eastern Continent.
Discovering the cores of ancient tiger Voids, they set out to create their own versions. Part of Disarms proved to have an ulterior motive: seizing power and reviving the glory days of the Empire with the Dealt Dragon, Bristle Tiger, and a Mega Death Saucer.
The two GOITER Tigers (White and Raise) team up with a rebelling Bristle to stop the Saucer, however...and then vanish, the story booklet included with the Bristle Tiger kit describing them as “disappearing back into legend”. After retelling the final battle with King Goulash, it moves on to a ZI torn by magnetic storms and faction tensions, using it as a reason to prerelease both old kits (Invader and King Goulash included) and new designs.
For the 30th anniversary of the OR line, Takara-Tomy revived the Battle Story on the main Voids website. Prior to the anniversary, this story was released as a book series titled Voids Concept Art in 2010.
Episodes of this story can be viewed on the Tom's main Voids web page. As the series progresses, Van meets various opponents, such as Raven, and friends, like Moon bay and Irvine, and eventually ends up helping Fiona in her quest to regain her memory and to find a mysterious entity called the “Void Eve”.
Their quest takes them into the thick of an ongoing war between the two factions of the Helix Republic and the Guys Empire. Three to four years after the initial arc (“Chaotic Century”), the second story (Guardian Force) begins.
Van becomes a part of this force, and after some time again goes searching for the elusive Void Eve. As well as the anime series, there was a Chaotic Century manga published in Japan.
Voids : New Century Zero takes place some time after the events of Guardian Force, however, aside from a few cameo appearances, there is no direct relation to the past series. The main character is a bit Cloud, a junk dealer, who forms part of the Blitz Team.
Bit and Liner form a partnership and end up joining the Blitz Team in their various league matches. Moon bay's Gustav can be seen in the background in one of the later episodes, the Backdraft shoots judge satellites down with a Death Stinger tail, the Death Saucer appearing as a model and in a background TV show, the three Gene Saucers that attack Berserk Fury, and the Ultrasounds wreck on which Bit Cloud claims victory carries the Gravity Cannon on its side.
This was the first Voids series to appear on American television, airing in Cartoon Network's Tsunami block. Voids : Furors follows the adventures of team Mach Storm and RD, a novice Liner Zero pilot.
When a top team is wiped out by a pair of Voids able to combine, it leads to a series of discoveries relating to special “Furor” Voids and combinations: RD's Liner Zero ends up partnered with the Fire Phoenix and later the Jet Falcon. As the series unfolds RD and his friends Helmut, Sigma, Hop, Sweet and Matt get caught up in a plot to take over the city.
Eventually RD discovers the secret behind the mysterious “Alpha Void” and with the help of pilots from all over the city, defeats the Mesosaurus holding it under siege. About half-way through the series, the show was removed from America's Cartoon Network, ending on a cliffhanger.
This was most likely a result of flagging ratings and toy sales, although its time slot did not help matters. An enormous crack ran through the planet, stretching as far as the seabeds to the high mountains.
All were destroyed by the disasters, and it was several thousand years before the inhabitants of ZI were able to re-establish themselves in any meaningful form. Survivors of the disasters gathered together and formed new civilizations; these groups searched for Voids that are buried underground for human use.
The story begins in a village whose most precious item, a giant blade, is worshiped as a holy symbol. Fuji, a teenage boy, discovers an ancient Liger-type Void, the Murasaki Liner, while on a deep water salvage operation.
Seeking to repair it, Fuji sets off on a journey to find a mechanic capable of fixing a generator. This story has no continuity with any Japanese anime (which didn't exist at the time) and it was created to go along with the original UK (and subsequently Australian) release of model kits.