EX Dash has the smallest area of effect and the hardest to aim. But Astro will attack while dashing, juggling enemies everywhere as he hits them.
There are also a few levels where Astro exclusively flies. He relies on his finger laser for offense, but can dash and use his specials normally.Despite excellent reviews, this game was mostly passed over for the Playstation 2 game developed by Sonic Team and this fell into obscurity. Those who did play the game though loved it.
Actually, I Am Him: Shadow is Sharaku and Blue Knight is the ex-president Rag who was thought to be dead, er, destroyed.
Boss Rush: World's Strongest Robots and World's Greatest Adventure. "The World's Strongest" pits Astro against the five strongest robots in the world. A change from the Manga, where Pluto fights the world's strongest.
Rag and Blue Knight are merged into a single character and both he and Deadcross are now "played" by Rock, though originally they were just one-shot characters. Furthermore, Rock later finds redemption and love and decides to stay in Mu, becoming the version of the character from the movie Marine Express.
Pook, the shape shifting robot from the Crucifix Island story is merged with Pick from Mazin Garon, while his working unwillingly for Skunk parallels Denkou (who also appears in the game but only as a minor boss with little role in the plot).
Nuka combines elements from her original 80s anime incarnation as well as Prime Rose's Death Mask, Bem from the original series' Earth's Last Day storyline (humanoid control system for a weapon of mass destruction) and Mitchy &/or Tima from Metropolis (created on Duke Red's orders using the power of Omotanium, plugged into a machine that can affect the sun).
Rainbow Parakeet is merged with Sherlock Homespun, the cyborg detective from the original Artificial Sun story.
In terms of his fighting style, Montblanc is actually mostly Brando, a different character from the World's Strongest Robot saga, retaining only his namesake's beak-like facial features. Something of a necessity, as the original Montblanc was a pacifist who didn't even try to fight Pluto before being killed by him, whereas Brando was a robot wrestler but one wonders why they didn't just use him to begin with.
The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: If you look carefully, you'll notice that when you first defeat the "World's Strongest Robots", they explode then collapse to the ground; but when you beat them for the second time, they simply fall down. This is subtle foreshadowing to the fact that the second time around, Astro is disabling the robots instead of destroying them, in order to regain Blue Knight's trust.
I don't see this in the American version. They get knocked out the same way both times around. Maybe it's only in the Japanese one.
Does This Remind You of Anything?: Non-sexual variant. The robot/human conflict in the Antarctic appears very similar to the segregation debates and Civil Rights Movement in the 50's and 60's. As well it should, considering the original manga story it's based on was written during this period.
Do Not Adjust Your Set: Drake broadcasts his message to Nuka, ordering her to initiate the Death Mask and obliterate all robot-kind so her father won't die, on all world channels.
Downer Ending: The first playthrough ends with Death Mask killing Astro and all other robots on Earth. Fortunately, after this, the player is given the ability to shoot for a far less depressing ending.
Some of the Omega Factor characters are hidden frustratingly well. While Max Sensors helps (Astro will point out when a character is in a given segment), you'll still be spending a lot of time looking around.
An entire subplot necessary to complete the game is initiated in a rather unintuitive manner: by repeating the tutorial level, since that's the only place barring cutscenes where Astro interacts directly with Dr. O'Shay (Astro will confront him about Dr. Tenma). Made worse by the fact that the game discourages you to do so to begin with by having O'Shay ask if you've forgotten the basic controls when you start.
Have We Met Yet?: How Pook is introduced. Later on, when Astro is transported back in time to Mu, it's Pook who doesn't recognize him. And in the New Game+, when you go back to the moment of their first meeting, they recognize each other.
Hit Points: But by the three-quarters point of Rebirth, they stop mattering.
Hollywood Atheist: One important quest has Astro proving wrong an archeologist, Boon, who doesn't believe in anything that cannot be proved by science. By calling up Magma who is very advanced and is somehow neither animal nor machine, according to Boon himself.
Let's You and Him Fight: Astro fights several heroes / investigators who think Astro is a criminal, or they're the type who fight first and ask questions later.
Musical Gameplay: A minor example. While hitting enemies into each other does produce increasingly high-pitched xylophone sounds, they're not particularly synched to the music or anything else.
New Game+: Literally. The entire second half of the game is reached after beating it once.
Nintendo Hard: On Easy you begin each life with with, ridiculously, 30 Super attacks and can stock up to 99 of them and enemies deal very low damage. On Hard? Nightmare. Enemies will tear about half of your HP with the lightest of attacks, you can have only 3 Supers now and there are MANY things that can kill you in a single hit. Let's state that we are not talking about bottomless pits or death spikes. Rebirth Mode is a living hell on any difficulty.
Set Right What Once Went Wrong: The second half of the game as Phoenix revives Astro and sends him back in time to make sure Death Mask doesn't activate and kill all the robots. With knowledge of the previous timeline, Astro does things a little different this time.
In addition to Tezuka works, the game is jam-packed with references to previous Treasure game Alien Soldier. For examble, the Artificial Sun has been redesigned to resemble one of AS's minibosses and Mazin Garon fights almost exactly like Leo-Z.
References to Gunstar Heroes are also present: the background in one level features buildings that have signs reading "Gunstar", Pook refers to his different forms as "Forces" (similar to the Gunstar Heroes-boss, Seven Force), and two songs from Gunstar Heroes were remixed for ''Astro Boy: Omega Factor".
Astro's six main stats plus the Omega Factor are called "The Seven Forces".