Kou has just moved to Safaritown, and on a starry night, he observes a meteor shower. It turns out that these aren't meteors, but toy-sized alien robots from another planet, called Gotcha Borgs. One in particular, G Red, finds Kou and explains that an evil force of these toy robots called the Death Force, led by the Galactic Emperor, is out to destroy Earth as they destroyed the Gotcha Borgs' home planet of Mega Borg, and the only hope for Earth is for kids to team up with the heroic robots and form the Gotcha Force.Based loosely upon toy fights that children have and gatchapon (capsule toys, usually from coin-operated machines) with gameplay derived heavily from Virtual-ON, Gotcha Force is a game from Capcom released exclusively for the Nintendo GameCube in 2003.A big draw for the game is that you bring in a small squad into every battle — when one robot goes down, the next in the squad takes its place. Moreover, more frequently-used robots gain levels, increasing their durability. Finally, a huge draw is that there are over 200 of the Borgs, each with their own fighting style, allowing for a great deal of customization and strategy for teams (and if you have the resources, nothing prevents anyone from using multiple copies of the same robot). The game is heavily Troperiffic, taking inspiration from a variety of sources and distilling all the delicious clichés into individual Borgs—Ninja, cowboys, samurai, knights, tanks, mecha infantry, transforming mecha, jet planes, dark monsters, tokusatsu heroes, and so many more...
This game has examples of:
Absurdly Low Level Cap: The level cap for all borgs are level 10. Although unless if you level grind, a borg wouldn't probably reach this until a new game plus. Plus, all levels increase are health and ammo, and only by a slight amount.
Action Bomb: The Walking Bomb borg. There are two ICBM tanks which are effectively the same deal, since the explosions from their missiles are so large they almost always get caught in them as well.
Action Girl: Usagi tends to prefer Borgs of this style, possibly making her an example by extension.
Adults Are Useless: Specifically cited at one point - only kids who have bonded with Gotcha Borgs can save the world.
Arm Cannon: The arm-as-cannon variety is used by Death Borgs in lieu of actual guns. The arm-mounted cannon variety is also present on several other Borgs.
Armor-Piercing Attack: Two attack types can pierce through barriers, doing damage even if they don't destroy the barriers - drills and energy lances. The former are used by the aptly-named Drill Robot, and the latter are used by the Atlas series of borgs (Atlas Tank, Proto Atlas, and Atlas Robot). As the Galactic Emperor makes regular use of a barrier, they are by far the most effective against him in the final battle.
Beam Spam: The Death Arc and the Sirius are capable of unleashing their entire arsenal at once on a single Borg. Is not as useful as would be expected, given that they're usually knocked back and given invulnerability after one or two shots hit—and now you're out of ammo.
Almost any borg with a projectile is capable of this during Power Burst.
Big Damn Heroes: If you manage to beat him every time throughout the game, during a mission late in the game against the Death Force, Sho will appear midway though the battle to help and become an ally afterwards. Kou even notes how he seemed to take his time coming to help.
Big Ol' Eyebrows: Kou is an... interesting example - they're each composed of what appears to be three very slim eyebrows.
BFG: Beam Gunner especially, whose second gun is so large he keeps it in Hammer Space.
Special mention goes to the Demon Samurai and Akuma Samurai, whose beam swords will extend as their allies are defeated (as one notorious side mission demonstrates with suicide bombers), eventually growing to ridiculous lengths. Presuming they live long enough and that enough enemies are available, they can have swords that easily extend beyond the length of the field.
Also, the Samurai Shogun, which has a charged slash that can literally hit everything that's directly in front of it.
Forget not the Metal Hero, the character who's charge, when activated in the air, will slash from the sky all the way into the ground, often OHKOing anything it hits. However, due to its activation time, it is not as accurate as the Samurai Shogun, but it does more damage.
Book Ends: G Red landing in Kou's hand. And if you haven't recruited Orochi or Sho, then the start of the final battle book ends with an early mission, with you fighting the Death Force alongside both Mana and Kakeru.
Boring, but Practical: Provided the player is skilled enough, low-tier borgs can be very effective, with most being mobile, and not costing much, and having attacks that can quickly reload.
Boss in Mook Clothing: Several high-tier borgs, such as the Dragon Borgs can appear randomly in battles later in the game.
Brain in a Jar: Galactic Emperor. And a brain the size of a small country, at that.
The Bully: Nekobe. While he never quite pulls a full Heel-Face Turn or becomes a total Jerk with a Heart of Gold, he still proves to be one of Kou's most loyal allies. Especially when going head to head with a planet-sized mech, where he enters after his other ally's borgs have been annihilated.
Chaste Hero: Kou, apparently. In an optional battle where he teams up with Usagi to fight Mana and Orochi, Usagi teases him being around three beautiful girls, which he just obliviously tells her to fight, much to her frustration.
Cherry Tapping: Pretty much the only reason to use Death Borgs, outside of being Cannon Fodder filler until you can afford something better.
Pretty much every borg with wings - their dash attacks are a corkscrew spin that does massive damage and effectively turns them into a drill.
Pop Honey inverts this trope to make everything worse - any Borgs hit by its "Mr. Reverse Bolt" will spin uncontrollably, minimally affecting movement, but make it effectively impossible to properly aim attacks. This can, however, have hilarious side effects when combined with destructive attacks that cover a wide area, namely Ultimate Cannon.
Hammer Space: Several Borgs switch between two weapons, sending whichever one they're not using to Hammer Space. Battle Girl and Claw Robot explicitly avert this trope - their missiles are stored in miniaturized form, and expand upon contact with air.
Heel-Face Turn: Kitsune, Nekobe, Yuji, Tama, and Met Eventually, it's possible to recruit Sho and Orochi as well, but the conditions to do so are nigh-impossible on the first run through the game. Arguably, Tetsuya as well - he shows interest early on in joining with Kou, but doesn't because Met doesn't want to at first.
Hopeless Boss Fight: Subverted. Several fights with Sho and Orochi seem like this, especially during a first playthrough, but are actually possible to beat. Also if you manage to beat them every time you unlock them as partners later on.
Incredible Shrinking Man - Two Witch Borgs can do this to you (with a resultant loss of power). Inverted by two other Witch Borgs that can make their allies grow (and resultant increases in power).
It Is Pronounced Tro PAY: G Red's pronunciation of "Gotcha Borg Corps of Justice" does not render the 'P' in Corps silent.
Jack of All Stats: G Red, many Gun Borgs, many Samurai Borgs, and most of the larger Machine Borgs.
Joke Character: The Roach and Death Eye borgs, can pretty much get killed by anything and move slowly and have a terrible attack. The Bug Witch and Death Borg Omicron can turn others into these respectively.
Knight in Shining Armor: Almost all of the Knight Borgs, but their description especially emphasizes their honorable nature.
Laser Blade: Very common with the Machine Borgs, or the higher-tech Ninja/Musha/Knight borgs.
Law of Chromatic Superiority: Gold-palette borgs have more extra health than Silver-palette ones, which in turn have more extra health than Shadow-palette ones.
Char Custom Rule: The human characters' unique borgs, which are palette-swapped versions of other Borgs (mostly Com Mons), have several more levels worth of stat-growth right out of the gate. It's usually three levels stronger, but Sasuke is notable for having six extra levels.
Level Grinding: Obviously, you can play more missions than necessary to gain experience for your Borgs (thought the benefits of doing so are only moderate), but you'll also gain more GF energy with each victory, allowing you to bring more and/or more expensive Borgs into battle (of which the benefits are significant).
Any level where you're forced to bring Kotaro along — his lack of experience means he's not only less skilled than your other partners, but can bring less borgs into battle, to boot. Fortunately, as long as you survive, you pass the level, and he's only a mandatory on a handful of them.
Luckily My Shield Will Protect Me: Most of the Knight Borgs carry a shield that can completely negate the damage from frontal attacks, though it's a bit of a crapshoot how often they'll actually intercept them.
Mad Bomber: The Remote Bomber and the Time Bomber. As they only take one hit point of damage from their own explosions, a viable strategy is to have them close with the enemy and deliberately drop bombs to hit everyone. Another involves using a bomb as a shield (which triggers the bomb, thus taking much less damage from the attack).
Magnet Hands: Nobody will ever lose their grip on a weapon unless they mean to, despite getting hit by bullets, swords bigger than they are, lasers, or NUKES. Both Magnet Robots have literal magnet hands.
The Medic: The Nurse Borgs. And by extension, Mana, since a great deal of her forces consist of Nurses and support borgs.
Mercy Invincibility: Getting knocked back by an attack lets a borg have a brief moment on invincibility when they hit the ground.
Me's a Crowd: Yuji during an event, inexplicably appears with two clones, only to be berated by Usagi for messing around.
Mid-Season Upgrade: Around the halfway point of the game, Kou raids a Death Force base where they find G-Red's missing data, upgrading him into Neo G-Red.
Mighty Glacier: The various Knight Borgs, and some of the Musha and Machine Borgs. All the Fortress/Dragon borgs.
Vlad's sword, Shadow Bringer (it's two identical weapons referred to singularly).
Musashi's katanas, Furinmaru and Kazinmaru.
Billy's guns, Rhythm and Blues.
Non-partner example: Imperial Knight has his shield-swords Alpha and Omega, while Dark Knight has Sol and Star.
Nerf Arm: Any borg with the "C" designator (sometimes called "crystal" or "glass" borgs), which are treated as being two levels lower than they actually are. They cost just as much to use as any other version of the same type of borg, too - the only thing keeping them from being a full-on Joke Character is that they're just as powerful as a regular version.
New Game+: You keep all your Borgs, your experience, and rare Borgs appear more frequently. You actually get a new save file each time, denoting further levels of "plus-ness," up to a maximum of eight. Defeating additional playthroughs also nets you rarer and rarer Palette Swaps of G Red.
Never Say "Die": Played straight when talking about what happened to Sho's father, but also averted, what with the antagonists being called the Death Force and all.
The boss theme in the game is even called "Just Die Already".
No Ontological Inertia: If any of a Borg's projectiles are still in the air when it is defeated, said shots will disappear.
One-Hit Kill: Attacks that appear to do this really just deal more damage then most Borgs have HP; such attacks generally cover a very wide area. Such attacks also usually don't kill huge borgs (IE Fortresses and Dragons), but rather deal a large amount of damage.
Optional Party Member: Sho and Orochi. Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to get one and not the other.
Palette Swap: There are five palettes in addition to the base for each borg - with four of them granting different stats compared to the base model (the fifth is just a standard recolor). Every human character's partner borg is generally this as well, but with some slight change to their textures or model as well.
Player Mooks: Just about all the Borgs. Several of them have personalities and backstories, but those are pretty much relegated to the Gallery' description boxes.
Poisoned Weapon: Done only with the Poison and Venom Worm. All his melee attacks and shots cause the target to steadily lose health.
Poor, Predictable Rock: Each of the allies will, at one point or another, challenge Kou to a training match, and their preferences can be handled pretty easily due to this. Mana (who specializes in healers and stat affecters - Nurse and Witch borgs) and Kotaro (who specializes in slower ranged specialists, Gun borgs) are the easiest. Outside of the hidden characters Sho and Orochi, Kitsune is the least predictible (he specializes in the catch-all Machine borg category).
The Power of Friendship: Pretty much the point of the entire games. Borgs need to be buddy-buddy with their Commanders, and the kids buddy-buddy with each other, in order to fight the friendless, hateful evil emperor.
Randomly Drops: Good luck getting the right piece of a multi-part borg. You'll need the luck of the gods if you ever hope to get an alternate-colored variant of a Borg that comes in three or even four parts. Fortunately, the more times you play through the game, the more common drops become. At plays 5 and above you'll be getting two or three borgs or data crystals per fight. Also helped by "Special Mode", where you can go back and replay any mission you've completed. With a force of six Death ICBMs.
Ranged Emergency Weapon: A good number of Knight, Samurai, Knuckle and other borgs are very powerful in close range, but have a slightly lackluster shot attack for use in a pinch. These attacks tend to have limited ammo, be easy to dodge, do relatively little damage, or recharge slowly.
Inverted with a good number of Gun, Girl, and other borgs that are ranged specialists, who frequently have a small melee weapon to defend themselves with if an opponent gets too close.
Razor Wind: Acceleration Ninja and Tornado Valkyrie.
Scoring Points: You're given a score-based evaluation of your performance after every fight. This is, of course, completely meaningless.
Shockwave Stomp: All of the terrestial Dragon borgs can do this if they walk, with the widest range being held by the Thunder Dragon and the Plasma Dragon.
Shoot the Medic First: Especially important in this game, because a single heal often restores a borg to full health, or very close to it. There is also no limit to healing other than the recharge time. You could of course keep them alive and intercept their healing attempts and get healed yourself, though this is a really hard thing to do.
Spiritual Successor: To the Virtual-ON series, in many ways. Its direct relative is the Gundam Vs Series, also being made by Capcom. Any GF veteran will find many similarities in this footage, down to the position of the health bar, ammo meters, and the same camera effects when killing the final enemy.
Seven alone on the Drill Robot. Beam Tank has one as well, making it the only Tank Borg that can perform melee attacks.
Many Borgs will spin a melee weapon like a drill when dashing towards a foe. This results in satisfyingly large combos.
Throwing Your Shield Always Works: Normal Knights and Sword Knights can throw their shields to smack at foes staying out of their melee range. Just because it works, though, doesn't mean it works well - the damage is negligable, cannot be done rapidly, and removes the shield from being able to protect the knight.
Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Since the animating forces of the Ghost Knight and the Elemental Knight are in their swords, and only their armor can be targeted, throwing the sword works well towards getting them out of trouble from anything without a wide area of effect.
Time Bomb: The Time Bomber's specialty, of course.
Tomboy and Girly Girl: Usagi and Mana have a bit of this dynamic respectively. The former fancying Action Girl Borgs while the later liking to use support based Borgs.
Transforming Mecha: Several of the high-end Machine Borgs can change between a vehicle (or multiple vehicles) and an anthropomorphic robot. It's also possible to obtain non-transforming versions of each form, which cost less to use.
You Kill It, You Bought It: What you can recruit is directly dependent on what you destroy - which means that if the opponent is using something you desperately want, you have to swoop in to make sure a partner doesn't bogart the kill.
The Arrow Ninja, which has the ability to anchor an opponent so that they can't move more than a very small distance from the anchor spot. One level combines them with Ultimate Cannons to make massive amounts of pain. Made even worse by the fact that a borg can be pinned by multiple arrows, limiting their movement range even further.
Several other borgs (Chainsaw Knight notable among them) can launch a claw at an opponent to bring them in close.