Video Game: Phantom Crash
was released in the United States in 2002 by Genki for the Xbox and localized (somewhat crudely
) by Phantagram. Sales were limited, but the game maintains a small cult following, and received a sequel, SLAI Steel Lancer Arena International
in 2005 from Konami.
The feel of the game is somewhere among Gran Turismo
, Unreal Tournament
and Jet Set Radio
, albeit rather lighter, and, let's not forget, based around Humongous Mecha
. Incidentally, they can turn invisible.
The game is considerably more casual when it comes to story than most mech games — your fellow Rumblers natter on about relationships, mech customization, and the genodical tendencies of the Tokyo Bay Area Ranker Tianhui. There is no world in need of saving (and judging by the condition
of Old Tokyo, it's a little late for that), no epic tales to be told, just a bunch of teenagers and the occasional twentysomething (and Siba, who is forty) living their lives and going out for an evening of blowing each other up in giant fighty robots.
Phantom Crash provides examples of:
- Attack Drone: The Dusters. Inoffensive little bots with a machine gun and a weak Optical Camouflage generator, good for a small sum of Crypto Credits-or just to get them out of your hair, as they can be dangerous if ignored. Randomly selected when renting a SCUBI.
- Arbitrary Gun Power: The basic, uncustomized Pistols are the worst guns in the game.
- Awesome but Impractical: Most of the heavy cannons and all of the lasers. Sure, they make a big boom (and the lasers chew through armor like DAMN AND have a short recharge period instead of limited ammo), but all of them are rather heavy. Shoulder-mounted weapons also count, as they're mapped by default to the face buttons, requiring that you take your thumb off the right analog stick to fire them.
- Best Boss Ever: Screw's incoherency, speed, distinct red-and-orange paintjob, and combat tactics make him quite a joy to fight against.
- BFG: The aforementioned Heavy Cannons and Lasers, as well as the Proton's (rare) 8-shot missile launcher.
- Chainsaw Good: One of the heavy Aeron's melee weapons.
- Critical Annoyance: Subverted. A siren sounds when your mech's health is low but it is extremely quiet compared to gunfire and movement.
- Deflector Shields/Some Kind of Force Field: Force Shields, activated based on how "loyal" your Chip is-and how much money you've pumped into Uplifting them. Appears as a rainbow-colored orb.
- Destroyable Items: All three pickups (Armor, Ammunition and New Yen) can be blown up. Useful if you want to deny the enemy health, less so if they're getting to them while you need them.
- Die, Chair! Die!/Rewarding Vandalism: Levels are littered with destructible rubbish, everything from shipping containers to oil drums to shanties. Destroying them gets you a little extra New Yen.
- Drop the Hammer/Power Fist: The Aeron Hammer Fist, the best (and most expensive, at 260,000 New Yen uncustomized) melee weapon in the game.
- Dual Wielding: Can be done with just about everything. Hell, you can have four machine guns if you want. Unfortunately, you can't quad-wield tank cannons or lasers, and mounting two of them is impractical to the point of impossibility due to weight constraints, especially if you like having Optic Camouflage and moving at a decent clip.
- Exploding Barrels: See Die, Chair! Die!.
- Gas Mask Mooks: Subverted. Although one of the stock sprites for enemy Rumblers is wearing a gas mask, they're wearing them as a fashion accessory more than anything else.
- Guns Akimbo: See Dual Wielding.
- Infinity Plus One Mech: Beat the First Ranker, and you'll get her mech.
- A Mech by Any Other Name: SCUBIs, aka ScooBees.
- Mini-Mecha: SCUBIs are slightly larger than a car.
- Power Equals Rarity: Not necessarily, but the better weapons are less common than the average ones, and it's difficult to get the unique weapons for each mech without buying an entire mech to get them.
- Power-Up: Armor, Ammunition and New Yen crates, dropped by the Hover Ship.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Like in Front Mission, you are free to paint your mech a nice shade of pink or purple.
- Ring Inventory: Not the inventory, but the stores (and your home) work on this principle. Sonic AMP is the exception.
- Scenery Gorn: The game is set in the ruins of Tokyo, which was abandoned at some point in the future.
- Shoulder Cannon: One of the four weapons mounts.
- Short Range Shotgun: The shotguns, unfortunately. Light/Heavy Customization can alleviate or worsen this.
- Sniper Pistol: Most weapons have ridiculous range. The only sniper rifle in the game-that of the Proton-makes up for this by being ridiculously deadly.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: Among the music you can purchase to listen to during fights, there are a great many songs that are oddly calming, including several tracks by the Kuricorder Quartet. Yes, the Kuricorder Quartet responsible for Azumanga Daioh's soundtrack.
- Standard FPS Guns: Spread across the
mechs ScooBees. All of them have a pistol, an assault rifle/machine gun, a shotgun, and a grenade launcher, but the Holy has the chaingun, the Aeron has the chainsaw, and the Photon has the Power Fist (though the Aeron's Hammer Fist is closer to the Power Fist, as it's the best melee weapon in the game), the Knife (subverted; it's a pretty decent weapon) and the Sniper Rifle.
- Sword and Gun: One of the possible builds for a Proton, and a fairly decent one.
- This Is a Drill: All three mechs have one. The Holy has two-the classic Penetrate Cone, and the more rapier-like Penetrate Esturk.
- Too Long; Didn't Dub: The description for the Proton Sniper Rifle is left untranslated.
- Universal Ammunition: Ammunition Cubes will refill your weapon's ammo, be it a sniper rifle, a tank cannon or a pistol.
- Virtual Celebrity: Mona Lisa, a virtual Idol Singer. Among the opponents you come across is a fairly large clan consisting entirely of her fanboys. They all use bright purple mecha and some of them are rather dangerous, especially if you're in a SCUBI not equipped for close-quarters combat.