Also known by its full name, Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON is a fast-paced mechafighting game by Sega. Most of the games' mecha designs are by Hajime Katoki, one of the more famous mecha designers for many Gundam series.Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON: Operation Moongate (1995), also known as VOOM or OMG for short, was first released in the arcades on Sega's Model2 hardware. The arcade machine is a large double sit-down cabinet with a distinctive twin-stick control set. The story has it that in the future a series of malfunctions has caused a computer on the Moon armed with a planet-destroyingcannon to go rogue. In an attempt to raise the forces to fight this menace, the government sends a number of remote operational terminals into the past, in the hopes that someone (such as you, the reader) would have the skills to pilot a Virtuaroid into the moon-base and stop the rogue computer.It was given a Sega Saturn release in 1996, which stripped down the visuals from the arcade version, but added a versus mode; and a Windows PC release followed later in 1997, which by default settings stripped down the frame-rate, but the settings can adjusted match the arcade version or better. The game later received an Updated Re-release for the PlayStation 2 as part of the Sega Ages 2500 line of re-releases (which unfortunately, stayed in Japan) on October 30th, 2007. The PlayStation 2 version is considered the best release yet, as it contains several new features not present in the previous ports, as well as better graphics, crisper sound quality, new extra modes (including one where you can play as the final boss), and a new Bonus Boss in the form of the original Fei-Yen, which is permanently in Hyper Mode without the health loss and can only be accessed if you beat the first eight Virtuaroids (nine if you fought Jaguarandi) in under nine minutes.It can still be found in many arcades today, so they might still need our help. What are you waiting for? Get cracking! Your future grandchildren are depending on you! But if finding an arcade machine is too hard, or the Saturn and PlayStation 2 versions are too expensive, Sega has re-released the game as part of the SEGA Model 2 Collection for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3...in Japan. With no plans for a worldwide release.Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON: Oratorio Tangram (1999) is the sequel to Operation Moongate, which reveals that the whole mess on the Moon was just a distraction from a splinter group within a powerful mega-corporation to allow them to break away from their parent company. Now the two are fighting over several mecha plants in the hope of finding the missing Tangram, a super-computer that is said to have the power to alter reality. Strangely enough, Oratorio Tangram is very rare in many places; for example, some reports that only two arcade machines were ever shipped to the United States. It had a much wider release for the Sega Dreamcast, and even without the twin sticks (even though they existed, but would burn a huge hole in your wallet) it is still a very fun game. Oratan is widely considered to be the best of the series and by far the most popular. It also added more depth into the previous game's mechanics, better gameplay balance, and a slew of new Virtuaroids to chose from.Oratorio Tangram comes in four flavors: Ver.5.2 was the first release on the SEGA Model3; Ver.5.4, which updated the interface and fixed many bugs of the first release; Ver.5.45 for the Sega Dreamcast, which was a port of Ver.5.4 with extra arenas from Operation Moongate* (the Japanese version also had a color and emblem customization feature, which could be also be used on Ver.5.66); and finally Ver.5.66 for the arcade, which featured three new Virtuaroid variants and all the extra stages from the Dreamcast version. Ver.5.66 was also switched the software to the NAOMI board used in many Sega games today which updated the sound and graphic quality. On April 29th, 2009, an HD port of Ver.5.66 was released to Xbox Live Arcade world-wide for 1,200 Microsoft Points, featuring a color-edit mode, online multiplayer, tutorials, and the ability to customize your control scheme, but lacks the local split-screen versus mode of the Dreamcast port.Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON: FORCE (2001), code-named VO4, is the series' third installment debuting on the Sega Hikaru hardware. The action was slower than in Oratorio Tangram (although this was justified in the story that a reaction on the planet Mars made the non-native-built mecha move slower), but featured 2-on-2, allowing up to four-players simultaneously. The game is considered a step back from Oratan and was not well-received. Not to mention there's also a much smaller variety of Virtuaroids to choose from. To compensate for this, they gave the Virtuaroids several different variants, but only to make the game even more confusing and annoying. On December 21st, 2010, the game received an Xbox 360 release like Oratorio Tangram did. However, it was released only in Japan as a retail game but the game is region-free. It includes a brand-new mission mode that's more-or-less Virtual-ON: MARZ's campaign stripped of a storyline.There is also a MEMORIAL BOX 15premium edition to commemorate the series' 15th anniversary. This package included an artbook that chronicles the entire Virtual-ON series, a 6-CD soundtrack that spans from Operation Moongate to MARZ, and two bouncy rubber balls resembling Tangram's eyes. Pre-orders and the premium edition of FORCE also apparently includes a bonus downloadable content code that allows players to enhance the bust-size of Fei-Yen and Angelan. If only we were kidding...Cyber Troopers Virtual-ON: MARZ (2003) for the PlayStation 2 is essentially a single-player focused version of FORCE. While including a story mode which fleshes out the nature of the Virtual-ON universe, MARZ unfortunately stripped down the gameplay even further in several aspects (especially thanks to limitations of the PlayStation 2 hardware), causing fans of the earlier three entries in the series to completely disown this game. The series made a notable appearance in Super Robot Wars Alpha 3, with Jack of All Stats Temjin (strangely piloted by the Mission Control character from MARZ), Robot Girl Fei-Yen the Knight (piloted by the second Mission Control character from MARZ and the Fei-Yen series' supposed creator) and Ace Custom Virtuaroid Apharmd the Hatter (piloted by the Hot-Blooded Sergeant Hatter) as playable characters. They also appear in Super Robot Wars K for the Nintendo DS, which actually incorporates MARZ's story. Virtual-ON: MARZ has been re-released exclusively in Japan on PlayStation Network on March 2013.See also G.rev's Senko no Ronde, a 2D bullet-hell shooter-meets-mecha fighter that shares similar gameplay elements to Virtual-ON.
All There in the Manual: While the series has never had much of the plot explained in the Western world, there is a significant amount of material released only in Japan, such as the side-story novel One Man Rescue written by Watari himself, multiple audio dramas, a manga released at the time of Operation Moongate, and an entire library of story information in the Japanese version of MARZ which was completely taken out of the American release of the game.
Bittersweet Ending: The ending of Operation Moongate for every Virtuaroid except for Fei-Yen gets one. The last few seconds of the ending shows your VR completely wrecked beyond repair with a limb or two missing drifting in outer space. What does Fei-Yen get? She slowly floats from space completely unharmed and protected by a magical barrier.
Cosplay: Fei-yen, which has had several different outfits over the games and even more outside of them. Some people go a step further, such as this. The Nanoha one is particularly fitting since it can be called "Fei-Yen with Raging Heart".
Da Chief: MARZ Chief, who relays mission instructions to the player in MARZ. In Super Robot Wars, he's retconned into piloting Temjin himself (and when asked for his name, he simply that "Chief" is good enough).
Face-Heel Turn: Sgt. Hatter, who runs off half-cocked when he gets sick of the Chief keeping secrets from him, only to turn up later to challenge the player, having not learned of the Conspiracy Redemption and still thinking that MARZ is in the wrong. If the player runs low on health during the second to last stage, Hatter reappears in a Big Damn Heroes moment, having pulled a Heel-Face Turn.
As of May 31st, 2011, immortalized in the flesh in Hasegawa's newest limited release model kit: the TF-12 B/C+ "Fei Yen with Blue Heart/Panic Heart+ [Fetish]" (yes, "fetish" is actually part of the kit's name). It includes decals for the Flesh Refoe color scheme, parts for the various chest variants, the bigger ass of the G65-model, and Commander Model headwear, as shown in this image◊.
In Oratorio Tangram, Raiden's special move lets him can take off his armor to became WAY faster than both Fei-Yen Kn and Viper-II. The downside: it loses more than 90% of his life gauge and his V-Armor goes to straight to 0%.
Fun with Acronyms: The Virtuaroids' body codes. For example: the "MBV" in Temjin's body code in Operation Moongate stands for "Main Battle Virtuaroid".
SHBVD stands for Special Heavy Battle Virtuaroid Division
Game-Breaking Bug: In the PC version of Operation Moongate, running head on into Belgdor can cause your mech to get stuck in Belgdor. This changes your screen to entirely light blue, and the round never ends because you can't hit Belgdor and Belgdor cannot hit you and the timer breaks.
There's also a bug that causes the game to crash upon seeing the continue screen on newer computers, but oddly enough, only Fei-Yen's continue screen doesn't cause the game to crash.
Glass Cannon: The Bal-series, and Z-Gradt with its cannon deployed. Raiden in Oratorio Tangram has a special move that blows off all him armor, making him faster but naturally more fragile. Angelan and Specineff are also one, too.
Also the Belgdor, which possesses reliable firepower, long range homing missiles as a primary weapon, is quite sluggish, not exactly great in middle to close combat, and is one stiff breeze away from being blown off its feet and knocked down, leaving it vulnerable to even more damage.
Gratuitous English: The infamous "Get Ready!" message, and the announcers in general. There's also the endings of Oratorio Tangram and FORCE, which give a little eulogy for your mech.
For the curious, they are mangled lyrics to the songs "Everyone Everywhere" and "Just For A Moment", respectively.
The mangled lyrics at the end of FORCE (ending with the phrase 'What more can be said?') originally came from the King Crimson song "Model Man".
Sgt. Hatter loves using such phrases as "YES!", "COME ON!", and "CONGRATULATION!"
Infinity Plus One Virtuaroid: The VR-747 a8 Temjin in MARZ. It's the fastest of all the playable virtuaroids, controls like Oratorio Tangram virtuaroids, very durable, and deals lots of damage. It's unlocked by beating the game on Ultimate, in which by then you have other virtuaroids to complete this difficulty with.
Joke Character: The completely useless Vox variants Lee and Loo. Lee has nothing but a weak gun. Loo only has a set of missles that have been described as "About as damaging as throwing a toilet paper roll at somebody".
From Oratorio Tangram Ver.5.66, we have the 10/80 Special. It's basically a mass-produced Temjin that plays like the original from Operation Moongate. The pros? It has much better control, and is faster than the original. The cons? It cannot air-dash, lacks special moves except the Gliding Ram, and has much weaker attacks.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Lilin Plajina try to get rid of Jaguarandi, consider as an annoying "bug" in M.S.B.S. network at time, by using Guarayakha to contain it. While it seem to work, now Jaguarandi can manifest itself in physical world using Guarayakha and its replica.
No Fourth Wall / I Know Mortal Kombat: Apparently, the original arcade game itself is actually a control module sent from the future. You playing it is actually participating in the battles.
Unfortunately, MARZ broke this essential part that made the series fun.
No Name Given: Temjin never tells his name in either Super Robot Wars and lets other call him Chief.
Nonstandard Game Over: Have more health than Z-Gradt or Tangram when time's up? Congratulations, you've just let the planet-killing superweapon/reality-destroying supercomputer win.
Secret Level: If you take too much time beating the first five enemies in Operation Moongate, you end up at Jaguarandi.
Shed Armor, Gain Speed: Raiden can sacrifice 90% of its health and all of its V-Armor in exchange for a massive boost to speed.
Shout-Out: In Oratorio Tangram, the dialogue said by the computer voice is taken from the lyrics Republic's Everyone, Everywhere. In FORCE, the Congratulatory Address is a heavily modified version of the chorus to Ultravox's Just For a Moment.
Shows Damage: The Virtuaroids will loose armor parts as they get more damage.
Shoulder Cannon: Raiden and certain variants of Apharmd and Temjin. See also Belgdor and its Vok-variant descendants.
Surprisingly Happy Ending: In Oratorio Tangram, what started out to be another Bittersweet Ending just like it's predecessor (and this time no magic barrier to save Fei-Yen), other units of your selected Virtuaroid swoops in to save you and carry you to the aircraft carrier.
For Fei-Yen in said game, save gets saved by Angelan and vice-versa.
Super Prototype: The original Fei Yen is much more powerful than her production model. Justified since she's sentient and eventually runaway from Lilin's lab.
Super Robot Genre: Truthfully, the game kind of blurs the line between Super and Real Robot. Some mecha, like Temjin and the Viper series, are very much like Real Robots, but then you have the Sailor Moon-like Fei-Yen and Angelan, which can summon giant ice dragons and send them to attack you.