Gihren no Yabou (Gihren's Ambition), commonly known as Gihren's Greed, is a turn-based strategy game set in the Universal Century timeline of the Gundam franchise. It is based political and military management to the One Year War (and in later games, beyond). In a way, it is like Civilization and Hearts of Iron, but simpler to manage, and more difficult. This series is quite popular on 4chan's /m/board, with threads popping up every now and then.The first game, Gihren's Ambition, was released in 1998 for the Sega Saturn, the game follows the path of either The Earth Federation or Principality of Zeon throughout the One Year War. The player has 150 turns to defeat the opposing side with either a scenario victory or a complete victory. If you meet certain requirements, you can unlock factions such as the Titans and Char's Neo Zeon (though they do not have access to post-OYW units for obvious reasons) as well as Kycilia's "Legitimate Zeon". A remake was released on the PSP in 2011, including among others updated attack scenes, a new anime opening and characters from Gundam Unicorn.The second game, Gihren's Greed: Blood of Zeon, was released in 2000 for the Sega Dreamcast and Sony PlayStation. It added a complex political system to the game, the player can now improve relations with various third parties and get rewards(ie: Enemy mobile suits) and create ceasefires and treaties with their enemies. It added more characters from various Gundam OVAs and stretched the timeline to the Gryps Conflict of Zeta Gundam as well as adding Axis as a faction. The map system was also updated, with battles taking place now on separate "battle maps". It was ported to the PSP in 2005.The third game, Gihren's Greed: War for Zeon Independence, adds an updated map system, political system and military system, several new characters, an updated spying system and Mobile Suits from MSV. The battles are fought in full 3D, unlike previous titles in the series. However, it only includes mobile suits and characters from the One Year War, and does not go beyond that timeframe. It does not include bonus factions, but it allows the player to create his own faction and choose such options as a leader (or creating his own leader), their base of operations, which captains and pilots to start with, which technology group their faction is in and what units the player starts with.The fourth and most recent game, Gihren's Greed: The Menace of Axis, restores many of the features missing in the last game and returns the battles to 2D, instead of 3D. The timeline is stretched to include the events of Gundam ZZ and Char's Counterattack, Factions featured in "Blood of Zeon" also make an reappearance. However it removes the ability to create your own faction AS well as the diplomacy system, replacing it with the Alignment System. This game contained EVERY single Gundam protagonist and antagonist, that piloted a mobile suit or was on a warship. Units from Char's Counterattack, Ms Igloo, Hathaway's Flash and many more are included—there are said to be roughly 400 MS/MA featured in this version of the video game. A major feature that was taken out were Event scenes, having animation: instead there are more than 400 still scenes created in collaboration with Sunrise to represent important events as portrayed in previous titles.As of this writing, a fifth game has yet to be made, and the series is not available for purchase in the West.
This game presents examples of the following tropes:
Adaptational Badass: Garma Zabi is a bit of an Upper-Class Twit in the anime. If he rebels against Gihren to form Reborn Zeon, he becomes one of Gihren's most dangerous adversaries, and wins the loyalty of his older brother Dozle to boot.
Alternate History: Since all of the leaders of the playable factions die in canon, and their canon deaths lead to a Game Over, this game is focused on this trope as they have to survive their canon deaths, as well as several What If? scenarios for each side.
This goes into the technical side as well. As the supreme commander, you also make the decisions of what Mobile Suits get the nod for R&D, further developing Super Prototype suits that the characters bemoaned the lost potential of.
Always Chaotic Evil: Averted; any faction can be played as Lawful or Chaotic. Yes, this means that Gihren Zabi can be played as a Lawful Good leader of his people (and gets a special ending for it), though this is much more difficult for the Principality to do than it is for other factions (among other things, it's very difficult for the Principality of Zeon to capture Jaburo without resorting to Operation British II). Overall, the game tries to encourage behavior in line with your faction's canonical ethics (Zeon and the Titans have a lot more faction-specific ethical violations than the EF or AEUG), but doesn't hold you to them.
Awesome, yet Impractical: As powerful as the Super Prototype units were in their respective eras, just how horrendously expensive they were is reflected in their in-game costs. Sure, you could try to manufacture as many RX-78 Gundams as your budget can afford, but you may want to wait for the humble GM Mooks and their variants instead; less flashy, sure, but far more practical.
Civil War: It's Gundam, so factions can split for a variety of reasons. This is usually linked to your Karma Meter; if kept high, many of the commanders who would otherwise turn on you will remain loyal instead.
Defector from Decadence: If Gihren proves to be evil enough, Garma and Dozle may rebel against him, along with many of the more heroic Zeon pilots.
Enemy Mine: If you get the bad Zeon ending in Blood of Zeon for the PS1, Part 2 opens with Gihren joining forces with Revil and the AEUG forming an alliance fighting against the Titans, who has seized control of the Earth Federation and most of Earth through a coup d'etat
In the Principality of Zeon campaign, after the Principality defeats the Earth Federation, the Gryps Conflict still plays out on schedule, and the Titans, AEUG, Axis Zeon, and later Neo-Zeon all form as enemies of Gihren Zabi, despite the situation being radically different from the canonical history.
One possible defeat scenario has the events of Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam happening earlier and being much more widespread. This only happens though if Gihren Zabi survives the end of the war and escapes with the Delaz Fleet to Axis.
Karma Meter: The alignment system in the most recent game.
Loads and Loads of Characters: As of the fifth game, the game includes every single Gundam UC Character up until Hathaway's Flash. Through there are quite a few useless ones that you can use as a result of that.
Mythology Gag: A lot for the Universal Century, by the very nature of the series. One example refers to the Unicorn Gundam originally being made for Amuro in mind. Depending on how the game unfolds, that's actually possible.
No Campaign for the Wicked: Averted in that you can play as either Federation or Zeon, or as any of the AEUG, Titans or Axis Zeon in the Zeta era. However, Char Aznable's Neo-Zeon, Scirocco's Titans, and most other factions are unlockable and do not have full campaigns.
No Export for You: Through, to be fair given the fact that Gundam is not popular enough in the West, along with the fact that it would take a LONG time to translate all the menus and units and find voice actors to voice the battle conversations, this is kinda of justified. Not to mention that chances are, Western critics would probably slam this game for having a lot of similarities to certain turn basedstrategy gamesthat arewell-received in the West.
And to those who are hoping for a fan translation...well, you're out of luck, since the game has lots of menus and stuff to translate, it would take a REALLY LONG TIME and a lot of commitment, far more than most indie or fan projects to be successful.
Nonstandard Game Over: Many special endings occur due to making the wrong decision in the event trees. Sometimes, this is even the historical event path, as with in the Zeon campaign, Kycilia Zabi executing Gihren for patricide.
Oddball in the Series: War for Zeon Independence had a lot of creative ideas that didn't really pan out, most notably the create-a-faction and the 3D battle system. Shin Gihren's Greed for the PSP had a DLC system along with a system that focuses specifically on the storyline of various pilots that also seem to be going nowhere.
Original Generation: The series features quite a few original mobile suits; for example, if you choose to mass produce the Gyan instead of the Gelgoog, it can be developed into new model that parallel the Gelgoog's development from canon, including the Gyan Marine and Krieger (analogous to the Gelgoog Marine and Jӓger respectively). This also includes Ace Custom versions for pilots like Char and Gato.
Peggy Sue/Set Right What Once Went Wrong: The games can come off this way, since a Gundam fan playing the game has knowledge that they couldn't possibly have In-Universe. For example, a Zeon player can choose to pull Ghinias Sahalin off the Apsaras Project before his dementia leads to the entire thing ends in disaster as in The 08th MS Team.
Skippable Boss: Char's Neo-Zeon can be skipped in the AEUG scenario if you end both the Zeta Gundam and Gundam ZZ arcs with a perfectly lawful Karma Meter.
The Starscream: Ubiquitous; this is Gundam, after all, and every villain faction has someone scheming for the top villain's slot. Paptimus Scirocco to the Titans, Kycilia Zabi and later Haman Khan to the Principality of Zeon, and Glemmy Toto to Axis Zeon.
The Battle Didn't Count: Averting the hell out of this trope is pretty much the entire point of the Mobile Suit Gundam: Gihren's Greed games. Killing named characters before or after the point they were supposed to die in the original series can change the way the entire story progresses, creating any number of Alternate Histories of the Universal Century timeline.
Up to and including the survival of Gihren Zabi himself.
In the One-Year War scenario, you have 100 turns to bring your side to victory.
In the war against Char Aznable's Neo-Zeon, you have 19 turns to take Axis and disable its nuclear pulse drives; failing this will lead to a very serious setback for the Earth. The Earth Federation and AEUG scenarios also allow for the Axis Drop to be prevented in the historical manner, should this fail; the Titans and the Zeonic factions have no such options.
The Titans have plenty of ways to be evil; nuking Jaburo, murdering Blex, and setting up the Cyber-Newtype research labs. The only problem is that as in the anime, Scirocco becomes The Starscream if the Titans are evil, resulting in either Jamitov's assassination or Scirocco's defection to Axis.
Through the game encourages you to be Chaotic as Gihren's Zeon, if your Karma Meter sinks low enough during the One Year War, either Garma or Kycilia might form their own faction, the latter being a HUGE blow as Char and all the Newtype pilots will deflect with Kycilia. Considering that this happens almost towards the final turn, it is very hard to be able to move on to part 2 if this happens.
What If?: This series deals with what-events such as Garma surviving the White Base's attack or Ramba Ral being given the Doms for his final battle with the White Base along with many others.
Indeed, the survival (or deaths) of certain characters can result in opening up new factions. Among the possibilities are New Zeon, led by Garma and Dozle Zabi, and Kycilia's Legitimate Zeon.
The Earth Federation campaign's second half asks "What if Johann Revil were alive to command the EFF during Axis Zeon's incursion?"
Youngest Child Wins: If Garma Zabi rebels and forms Reborn Zeon, his older brother Dozle will join him, but despite both being older than him and outranking him, he'll subordinate himself to Garma's command.