Also known as Ace Combat X2
prior to its release, Joint Assault
is the eleventh game in the Ace Combat
series and the first one to be set on our familiar Earth, rather than the Constructed World
of Strangereal. Released in 2010.
The year is some unspecified number in 20XX, some years after the 2007-2008 Global Financial Crisis. It is your first day on the job as Antares One, a rookie pilot in the private military company, Martinez Security. The company is hired to participate in a joint exercise between the American 7th Fleet and the Japanese Self-Defense Force but is waylaid by fighter planes from a terrorist group calling themselves the Valahia.
The Valahia proceed to attack Tokyo, followed by one of their Orgoi flying fortresses, as a prelude to declaring war against the entire world. Meanwhile, Martinez Security aligns with the nations of the world to form the International Union Peacekeeping Force (IUPF) with Antares One leading the charge.
Tropes found in the game
- America Saves the Day: Played with. Even though game info hints that Martinez is a US-based PMC, and your immediate superior, Burford, is an American citizen as well as hinted to be former U.S. military, the staff is a combination of American and foreign PMC members. You also have allied PMC soldiers with you from other countries.
- Award Bait Song: "For us All".
- Bald of Evil: Andre Olivieri.
- Beyond the Impossible: Final Sulejmani in his second phase uses a missile-dodging roll maneuver no one else can pull; not his teammates using the same plane and not the player, either.
- Bilingual Bonus: Varcolac is named after the Romanian word for werewolf. The Balaur as well, which is a kind of monster in Romanian folklore.
- Blood Knight: Rigel Varcolac Squadron, particularly Kiriakov.
- Boss in Mook Clothing: AEGIS ships look like normal Cruisers but their twin SAMs have much greater lock-on range than the norm. To add insult to injury, the first time you meet them you usually won't have long-range missiles yet.
- Boss Rush/Bonus Boss: This title ups the series' ante by sending multiple previous player characters/notable enemies at you in reverse-chronological order - Strigon Leader from AC6, Gryphus One from ACX, Galm One from ACZ, Blaze and Zipang from AC5, Yellow 13 and then Mobius One from AC04, Dision from AC3, the ZOE Commander from AC2, and finally Scarface One from the original Air Combat.
- Clasp Your Hands If You Deceive: Andre Olivieri.
- Didn't Need Those Anyway: Sulejmani's Varcolac and its PD gun.
- Disc One Final Boss: The Valahia leader.
- Escort Mission: One misssion plays with this, by having Player One be the Escorted (under a strict 1000 Altitude limit, and a very harrowing path), and Players Two, Three and Four protecting Player One's six.
- Face-Heel Turn: Everyone in Rigel Squadron. As you go near the end of the game, you need to shoot them down.
- Four Is Death: Rigel Varcolac Squadron.
- Honest Axe: Referenced in the naming of the Golden Axe Plan.
- Joke Plane: The WWII A6M Zero and F6F Hellcat fighters. Better hope your skill with guns is up to snuff, 'cause no air-to-air missiles for you!
- Lethal Joke Plane: Those planes mentioned above? A duo of them took on the Ace of Aces mission and won.
- Lightning Gun: The Electrolaser.
- Magnetic Weapons: The Balaurs.
- Multinational Team: The Martinez Securities staff.
- N.G.O. Superpower: The enemy, Valahia, is supposedly a terrorist group. Nevertheless they have access to flying battleships, a massive railgun and lots of conventional forces in all three mediums.
- Non-Action Big Bad: Neither the Valahia leader nor Olivieri fight you in the air.
- One-Hit-Point Wonder: Subverted; a properly-tuned plane can possibly take multiple missile hits and still fly, even on Ace difficulty.
- Obviously Evil: Played straight with Olivieri. Hint: the guy that's profiting from war? he's a bad guy.
- Parental Abandonment: The Freudian Excuse of Sulejmani is that his parents sold him off as a Child Soldier.
- Path of Most Resistance: The mission where you fly a 747 in a ravine offers you a long path with flak and proximity-triggered mines or a short one with AAA and missiles. Choose your poison.
- Private Military Contractors: Returns to the series here, with the player(s) employed by Martinez Security.
- Real Men Fly Pink Raptors: One of the unlockable paint schemes for the X-02 Wyvern is pink.
- Real Life
- Story-Driven Invulnerability: Varcolac have the same deal as Yellow from 4.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: A milder version of this is present, where the track played during the level where the Spiridus goes down is a freaking piano orchestra. Yet it somehow fits.
- It also qualifies in the same way Ace Combat 2 does, due to reusing a few tracks from 2.
- The Voice: You can choose between a male American and British combat operator, a female Japanese and Swedish combat operator.
- With This Herring: This game gives you the option of flying either the F6F Hellcat or the A6M Zero, both propeller planes used in WWII.