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Video Game: Ring Of Red
Not to be confused with that problem your Xbox360 has hanging over its head. Or a Heroic Red Ring Of Death.

What would happen if Japan never surrendered after the Americans dropped the nuclear bomb? And if Germans developed Humongous Mecha? This is explored at the action-strategy game Ring of Red. The American-led Allied forces, following the success of Operation Downfall, and the Soviet invasion of Japan from Hokkaido and after much fighting divide the archipelago apart with Hokkaido being renamed to Vastokayask. After that, the Korean War is simply reallocated to Japan, which is divided into South Japan, capitalist, and North Japan, communist. The plot takes place in 1964 with Masami von Weizegger and Ryoko Minakawa, two South Japanese test pilots who end up charged with recovering a stolen prototype mech during a North Japanese-led infiltration mission.

The mechas, named Armored Fighting Walkers (AFW), as would put the Miguel Lopez from Gamespot, "Unlike the lithe, sleek mechs that we've come to associate with the genre, Ring of Red's cumbersome, gas-powered mechs aren't graceful in the least. They're heavy machinery, first and foremost, no more deft than a six-ton crane or a Ferris wheel.". They had replaced tanks as primary land-warfare vehicle, for harsh terrains, like the Japanese territory (FridgeBrilliance?).

It is now available for download from the PlayStation Network. PS2 game discs are still available, albeit rare unless one scours Ebay and other sites and stores that sells used copies of the game.

This Game Provides Examples of:

  • Abnormal Ammo: Crews give their vehicles options to load specific ammo. In most cases, this is normal: they simply load the shell into the main gun and let the pilot fire. In some cases, however, the AFW's gun is not a breech loader; as a result, the crews make do by loading the ammo into a signal flare gun and shot them directly. This includes incendiary shrapnel, poison gas, and armor piercing rounds strong enough to damage other AFWs.
  • Action Girl: Ryoko, Ayana and about half the infantry in the game.
  • Alternate History: Aside from what's mentioned in the summary above, Nazi Germany invents Humongous Mecha in the latter days of WWII.
  • A Mech by Any Other Name: Armored Fighting Walkers (AFWs).
  • Anachronism Stew: Female front-line troopers in 1960's Japanese and Soviet forces. Not even for the usual reasons, given that they wear the same uniforms as the guys.
  • Anti-Villain: Kaiho, Minakawa and the Loyal N. J. Army.
  • Arm Cannon: The distinguishing visual feature of Medium AFWs.
  • Awesome Yet Practical: Kinasato and his infantry, if properly specced, can be frighteningly effective at killing the enemy's infantry.
    • 4-Legged AFWs have the skill "Emergency Load," which instantly loads their weapon. Special rounds from crews don't miss, even when the enemy has the Dodge skill active. Combine a crew with a lot of special rounds, especially the APCRs, with a high-level 4-Legged AFW, and you can kill bosses in very short order. Even if you don't kill them, you have the entire round to finish them off!
  • Badass Grandpa: Ippei and Minakawa.
  • Batman Gambit: The reason why Dora was hijacked was because Minakawa wanted to use it as a means of getting Japanese in North/South Japan to get rid of Soviet and American-led troops in both countries and reunite the divided nations.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Ayana is a sweet, polite girl, but she has a big 4-Leg AFW.
  • The Big Guy: John Caster and his "Little John".
  • Bittersweet Ending
  • Bolivian Army Ending:Possibly averted. There is a rumor that Weizegger and Ryoko survived their last stand in the ending.
  • But Not Too Foreign: Masami von Weizegger, half-Japanese, half-German
  • Casanova Wannabe: Again, Emilio
  • Character Development: Masami is a egoistic novice who learns to care with others as the story progress.
  • Chewing the Scenery: Rodrigues somehow managed to have this without voice acting or alternate text
  • Chicken Walker: Light AFW's. One model even looks like a giant mechanical chicken.
  • Cool Gun: The light AFW's crewmen fire their special rounds (whether they are shrapnel, incendiary shrapnel, chemical agents, armor piercing rounds, etc) into a humble signal flare gun. They're just as effective when the crews manning bigger guns load them via shells.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: When Dora fires the nuclear shell
    • In the last mission, Masami and Ryoko face the entire Soviet Army alone, while letting their friends escape.
  • Crowning Momentof Heartwarming: If you fight Minakawa with Ryoko, he learns that Ryoko is his daughter. Minakawa abandoned Ryoko and her wife, so she taught Ryoko to hate her father. When Minakawa discovers, he says "You're became like your mother" and his AFW explodes. Ryoko could only burst into tears.
  • Deadpan Snarker: EVERYONE has their moment, but this is most definitely Kinasato's hat.
  • Didn't See That Coming : Streifen betrayed the unit, saying to them to "die an honourable death" as the last mission. Guess what? They failed miserably to accomplish his orders.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Jun is mistaken for a girl several times in-story.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Masami hates his Japanese first name, so he asks his comrades to call him "Weizegger" instead.
  • Expy: Oddly enough, Dora Gustav become this to titular Metal Gear. Giant Walking Tank with long range nuclear delivery capabilities, even though this function in itself considered incidental and simply Crazy Enough to Work at the time.
  • Former Regime Personnel: Schreigen and Rodriguez were both AFW specialists for Nazi Germany given amnesty by the Western Allies for their technical expertise, similar to Wernher von Braun in Real Life.
  • Fragile Speedster: Light AFWs have relatively thin armor and armed with either heavy machinegun or a light cannon, but makes it up with insane mobility and terrain handling.
  • Funny Foreigner: Emilio
  • Gender Is No Object: Never addressed in story except by the villainous Vietnam veteran Yu Kaiho, but presumably there's no issue at all, half of the characters are female, all fought actively according to their roles. Strange since we're talking about Japan, but presumably it's a part of the Alternate History itself.
    • Minakawa exhibit the same view with Kaiho, but only for a moment of surprise before he going all out anyway.
  • Gray and Grey Morality: The protagonist are mostly Neutral Good, every single of them have their own agenda, and to a point knew well that the country they serve is most definitely not perfect, North Japan Army only fought for their clause too. In the end, Kaiho and Minakawa proven to be Well-Intentioned Extremist (and far less of an extremist than protagonist feared to boot), and the protagonist refuse to be used as Black Sheep and determined to expose the truth behind the conflict.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Rodriguez, who always bossing everyone, but always cares with their safety
  • La Résistance: The North Japan Liberation Front. Also the pro-communist guerrillas Masami and company face in South Japan-based missions.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Type 3 at the start of story, it moves like Light AFW, dish it out like Heavy AFW, and hits like Anti-AFW. It's only weakness is long distance combat due to inherent inaccuracy of dual retractable cannon.
    • Then it got the accuracy problem fixed....
    • Anti-AFWs in general have relative fast forward speed and boasting thick armor, in return, they usually have a medium cannon with very short barrel as main gun. Their backward speed is pathetic too.
  • Loophole Abuse: Ban on aircraft made using nukes impossible, then Dora Gustav crawl in
  • The Mario: Medium AFWs are capable to fight well with their medium cannon as well as mix it up in close combat (though not as well as Anti-AFWs).
  • Mighty Glacier: Heavy AFWs boast thick protection and carries heavy armament, but has slow response and loading times.
  • Military Mashup Machine: The Dora in the game, IS the real Dora, captured by the Americans, who gave it a BFG. It's basically a land-battleship.
  • More Dakka: The "Rapid Fire" and "Cooperation" Infantry skills
  • Nerves of Steel: Kinasato
  • Nintendo Hard
  • Nonchalant Dodge: The "Quick Move" Max skill allows you to do this. Used mostly by light AFW pilots (the only medium AFW pilot who uses is Kaiho).
  • Putting on the Reich: Played with; South Japanese infantry unit uniforms look very similar to WWII German uniforms, but they're not the bad guys.
  • Real Robot Genre: One of the hardest example in any fiction, without being too impractical. Early AFW designs were postponed due to poor leg workings, and they perform badly in relatively flat European Theater. They are by far slower than any WWII era tank in even ground. Crippling the legs are important to the point of Lamp Shading; there are no less than four infantry techniques for crippling them (two different types of landmines, tying them down with high-tension cables, and frying them with electric shocks), and the targeting computer, when allowed to calculate maximum accuracy note , invariably hits the legs.
  • Ship Tease: Ayana actively tries to interract with Wei in chapter 5 and 6. However. it also highlight his Character Development, and could be intepreted as platonic.
  • Spider Tank: 4-Leg AFW
  • Stock Footage: Played in very interesting way, most of the live action sequences are Real Life war footage... but in certain scenes, AFWs are inserted creatively that because the footage is old, has low framerate, and very much grayscale, the mech's presence and actions look very realistic, averting Conspicuous CG. Observe.
  • Super Move Portrait Attack: Happens whenever someone uses a Maximum skill.
  • Super Prototype: One gets stolen from you by Kaiho during the prologue missions.
  • Turn-Based Strategy
  • Walking Tank: In fact, many of the AFW designs are based on specific WWII tank designs. Jun's AFW, for example, is based on the M3 Stuart while one of the North Japanese Anti-AFWs is clearly modeled on the Soviet SU-85 self-propelled gun.
  • X Meets Y: More realistic take on Gear Krieg set in 1960s, Ideology-torn Japan.
Unity Of CommandWorks Set in World War IIExo Squad
R-TypeTurn-Based StrategySD Gundam G Generation
Ridge RacerPlay Station 2 Rise Of The Kasai

alternative title(s): Ring Of Red
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