Gadget Trial is a PC game released in 2006 by Kogado's Kuma-san Team. Referred to as a fusion of Advance Wars and mecha musume, it is one part turn based tactics simulation and one part Visual Novel.After a global war, the Eastern Treaty Organization, a collection of East Asian states, has developed cyborg warriors known as the 'E-Series'. These battle cyborgs each have the fighting strength of a full military unit, and are capable of replicating themselves via a sort of mitosis. And, as seems to be the case, these cyborgs all resemble various types of Moe Moe girl.Research and development has yielded two main types: Type Black, which have no aspects of human personality and are designed to be ruthless battle machines, and Type White, designed with human personalities. In order to decide which type to mass produce for the military, the top brass has decided to hold a series of trial battles between a Type White team and a Type Black team.The player character (Major Shitoshi Mihara) takes control of the Type White team, and must lead the personalities under his command to victory in the trials.
Gadget Trial provides examples of the following tropes:
A-Cup Angst: Yu-ri is the flattest (and most envious of Nei and Souka), while Izen is a borderline case.
Catch Phrase: Major Mihara's "Put some spirit into it!" or "kiai wo irero!" in Japanese. In one of the later missions, Nei hangs a lampshade on this, by saying that a certain problem can't be solved just by putting some spirit into it.
Izen also shouts out some phrases upon gaining control of structures.
The last unit to complete its turn before winning the round (either killing the last enemy or capturing the enemy's central command center) will also shout a winning phrase.
Cool Big Sis: Nei. Her designation is EPF-000GF, indicating that she is the first model.
Color-Coded Characters: The girls each have a personal color scheme (Izen-pink, Nei-dark yellow, Yu-ri-green, Souka-blue, Hisoka-light purple). Also, something colored black, silver, dark green, or sporting desert camo is out to kill you.
Crippling Overspecialization: Yes, that's a autocannon that Souka's holding in her bomber and fighter guises. No, she can't actually use it.
Drill Sergeant Nasty: Major Mihara tries to be this, but winds up being deflated by the E-Series under his command.
Easy Logistics: All units run on energy, and they will die if their energy reserves are depleted (a common cause of death for Souka units behind enemy lines). However, you can replenish a unit's energy at any friendly structure. Cue planes resupplying on ports.
Hisoka, being the naval unit, averts this. She could only resupply in ports.
In a departure from Nintendo Wars, a unit of energy is consumed only at the start of a unit's turn (a la air and sea units from Advance Wars). Moving does not consume additional energy.
Empty Eyes: The E-Series Black sport these. The contrast rhymes that of being programmed for full obedience, with White's self-awareness that is accompanied by brighter, pronounced irises and a gleam. Most obvious in visuals of mirrored fight screen.
Extreme Omnivore: Izen, who seems to have a certain fondness for dynamite, which she says tastes like bean jelly.
Nei is the milder version of this, perfectly fine with eating bugs and snakes for the nutrition.
Face-Heel Turn: Major Wakabayashi is a variant of this,starting out as Mihara's opponent in the trials before actually defecting to the Continental Army.
Mihara as The Lancer. He has elements of The Hero himself, but fits The Lancer role better due to his tendency of being in contrast of the team's generally cheerful mood.
Nei as The Smart Guy, for arguably being the one with the soundest tactical knowledge among the White Team members. Doubles as the Cool Big Sis.
Souka as The Big Guy, for being the second tallest in the cast, and sporting large... energy tanks. Gameplay-wise, her bomber form is the most devastating offensive force since its introduction mid-game, while her fighter form had the double role of air superiority maintainer and scout with its long movement range.
In actuality, Souka and Nei have a somewhat interchangeable roles in the Five-Man Band, depending if you include their Informed Ability or not. Both are the tallest girls in the White Team, both also have good brute force (thus fulfilling The Big Guy role), and if Informed Ability was to be believed, Souka has the highest intelligence quotient among the team (thus making her a The Smart Guy too).
Hisoka fits best as a dedicated The Chick for her Sugar and Ice Personality who provides good artillery cover in her battleship form. Her submarine form is better described as a NinjaGlass Cannon though, with its relatively thin armor and considerable damage.
Yu-ri fits best as The Tagalong Kid for her height and stature as well as her limited land holdings, although her rather feminine frilly dresses strengthen her The Chick aspect a bit. She's also borderline The Load gameplay-wise, since she's rather hard to use because of her inability to target adjacent enemies and her limited movement range.
Fog of War: Units have a certain line of sight that pierces the fog of war, but it returns once the unit(s) leave that particular area. Radar installations gives permanent sight of a wide area once captured. Unlike Nintendo Wars, which happens in some levels, in this game it happens in every single level.
Geo Effects: Wise players will use terrain-granted defense bonuses to prolong their unit's longevity and resist attacks that would otherwise kill the units outright.
Which lead to Garrisonable Structures, in a sense. Structures (towns, ports, factories, airports, Radar installations, Kill Sat installations, and HQ) grant a considerable defense bonus regardless of occupation status, so defending in that area is advisable.
Unlike in Nintendo Wars, air units in this game benefit from terrain-based defenses.
Informed Ability: Souka is good with math and crack decision-making (a requirement for Real Life pilots), and Izen is a musclehead.
Kill Sat: there is an installation that gives the player (or the enemy, whoever got to control it first) the ability to launch one large-area Kill Sat attack that hits for 50 damage (all units have 100 life) regardless of terrain defense bonus and can be dropped on any place in the map. There are only a few such installation per map, thankfully.
Tactical Rock-Paper-Scissors: Played with. Tanks, AP Cs, Helicopters, Carrier Hovercrafts, and Scouts does heavy damage to infantry, Artillery-based units (SP Artillery, Rockets, and Battleships) generally does heavy damage to other land units (including their own kind), and Bombers kill them all. Bombers, however, are defeated by Anti-Aircraft and Fighters, with Fighters also succumbing to A As. Submarines are strong against naval units (even other subs) but is weak against bombers.
Taking You with Me: Both Major Wakabayashi and General Wong attempt this in the last mission: Wakabayashi to avenge the sting of defeat at the player's hands, and Wong is willing to sacrifice the Type White units in order to keep the Type Silver data from being released to the world. Luckily, the Type White team manages an escape.
Token Mini-Moe: Yu-ri. Why else would a series of gynoids have a short flat chested girl with a cutesy Verbal Tic within their ranks?
You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Most of the main cast averts this by having more or less normal-colored hair, but Hisoka (pale green with a tinge of blue), the Silver Team (well duh), and Mihara (a very dark blue) plays it straight. General Wong's gray hair is arguably due to her age.
Zerg Rush: Many scenarios pit you against enemies with quite a numerical and production advantage, and they are prone to deploying lots of infantry units to try and capture your structures.
Zettai Ryouiki: primarily Nei in her human form, but the others have at least one equipment setup that has Zettai Ryouiki by virtue of stockings or high-rising leg protector.