Hey look I made progress!
All cutout and awaiting sanding and cleanup! Frame looks awesome without armor. Those legs!
Also, noticed while building this guy that the parts for the backpack are on parts of the sprue that are optional to the mold. You know, with the little valves/plugs in the gating of the sprues. Oh, and they're pieces that the Commander type includes, too, so they're not removed for it. Which, grasping at straws, means Bandai planned ahead enough with this mold to cover future variants of the kit. This could mean that there's other parts optional to the mold for building, oh, I don't know, the Defensor B?!