The Kingdom of Nordennavic, an ostensibly neutral northern nation on the Anean continent, has staunchly remained out of battle for much of world history. However, following predictions of the Ulysses impact, they fear that their neutrality may not serve them well any longer. Thus, they form the covert group Grendel Squadron, sending them on secret missions around the world to influence wars in their favor.
The story spans 1999 through 2016, with the Grendel Squadron secretly participating in all three major conflicts of this period: the Second Usean Continental War, the Circum-Pacific War, and the Anean Continental War.
Tropes found in the game:
- Dashed Plot Line: The game takes place over seventeen years, with several years even between missions during the same campaign.
- Genre Shift: It's a 2D top down shooter much like Ace Combat Advance, however it uses the traditional linear conveyor belt style progression.
- The Greatest Story Never Told
- Hero of Another Story: Grendel Squadron kicks ass in other parts of the same wars the other heroes fight in.
- Hufflepuff House: Over the years, the Kingdom of Nordennavic received brief mentions in the Strangereal setting lore, but never made an appearance in any of the main Ace Combat games. This entry in the series is basically intended as an aversion of this trope.
- Infinity +1 Sword: The Arvakr V-50 line has perfect stats across the board when fully upgraded. The Arvakr V-55 is a special case. It's an exact copy of the V-50, but only usable in the last stage because of its ability to hover. Yes, a hovering fighter jet.
- Mysterious Protector: The Grendel Squadron to the protagonists of the previous games.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Nordennavic supported the Eastern Faction in the Estovakian Civil War. They didn't quite see the Anean Continental War coming as a result.
- Neutral No Longer: Nordennavic tries to maintain neutral. When it intervenes, it chooses which side is best, and secretly sends help.
- Norse by Norsewest: The main character's homeland, the Kingdom of Nordennavic, is an obvious stand-in for Scandinavian countries in the world of the Ace Combat series.
- Spider Tank: The Final Boss, the Giant Antlion, basically a four legged walker tank with a giant laser.
- Super Prototype: Unlike other games where you use real aircraft, you only use experimental prototypes in this game, likely because licensing was unaffordable for a mobile game.
- Also notable, for the first time in the series, you get to pilot one of the superweapons you usually take pains to destroy, specifically, the Arkbird from Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War.
- Theme Naming: In keeping with Nordennavic being Norse by Norsewest, all of its fictional aircraft are named after terms from Norse mythology.