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Video Game / Mobile Suit Gundam Side Story 0079: Rise From The Ashes

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A 1999 Simulation Game set in the Gundam universe released for the Sega Dreamcast. As the title implies, it is a side-story to the original Mobile Suit Gundam, taking place during the One-Year War. The game takes place in Australia, which at the beginning of the war was ruined by Operation British. The player takes the role of Lieutenant Master Pierce Rayer, leader of White Dingoes, an elite mobile suit force tasked with helping The Federation reclaim Australia from the Zeon forces.

The game eschews many Gundam staples and tropes, rather than being about a ragtag group, likely including a youth who happened to luck into the conflict to save the day, it's about an already experienced mobile suit squad piloting their grunt suits in a campaign to clear out the Zeon in an already ruined land. In fact, there's not even a single Gundam in the entire game. As such it's one of the realest of the Real Robot Genre in all of Gundam-dom.

Good job out there, White Dingoes. Your next mission contains the following tropes:

  • Ace Custom:
    • Technically, all the White Dingo units are superficially ace customs, as they are painted in the White Dingoes custom color scheme of dark gray-on-gray. However, their performance is no better than a standard production model. However, their blue-on-white version of the GM Sniper Custom II does have additional modifications to the base model, specifically Vulcan gun pods and a shield not seen on other versions. Their grey-painted version of the Guncannon Mass Production type, instead of the 90mm machine gun rifle and shield of the standard version, wields 100mm machine Guns Akimbo.
    • Visch Donahue has his own custom Gouf and Gelgoog.
  • Competitive Balance: Comes in many flavors:
    • Shields: Players can use either the small shield which obviously defends less and is more easily destroyed, but can be used for melee attacks. The large shield is simply defensive.
    • Weapons: The various weapons differ in damage output, ammunition size, reload times, and splash damage. Even the mighty beam rifle (being a Flawed Prototype) isn't the outright be-all, end-all weapon it is in most One Year War works.
    • Suits: Played straight in the beginning, but eventually subverted. The game begins with two choices, the GM and the GM Cannon. The GM is faster, but more lightly armed and armored. The GM Cannon is designed for support and has a shoulder mounted cannon and more armor, but can't move as fast. The optional mass-production Guncannon is an exaggerated version of the GM Cannon, completely lacking any melee weapons and being even slower, but more heavily armored and has twice the guns. But the GM Sniper II is just better in the end game, period.
  • Continuity Nod: The final mission involves trying to destroy Zeon HLVsnote  before one of them, carrying a bioweapon, can lift off. When the mission starts, one HLV takes off before you even get there. At the end of the mission, it's reported that the HLV was forced to land in Africa. This is the HLV Anavel Gato will use to get into space in Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory
  • During the War: The game is set against the backdrop of the One Year War, telling a smaller series of skirmishes than the Mobile Suit Gundam anime.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower: The White Dingo Team are provided with three GM Sniper II units, which are superior to their previous units by a massive margin. To note, canonically, the GM Sniper II is on par with the Gundam in terms of capabilities. This is a good thing too, as Visch Donahue pulls out a custom Gelgoog.
  • A Father to His Men: Visch Donahue is described as being "a sympathetic and flexible officer" and well-respected among his troops, whom he personally leads.
  • Featureless Protagonist: Within the game itself, Master Pierce Rayer is never actually seen or heard. Subverted in side materials, where he's seen as a serious looking, blonde man.
  • Flawed Prototype: The P-Beam Rifle. P, in this case, stands for "Prototype." It's only usable in one mission (unless unlocked) and only has a paltry six shots before its long reload. It's a prototype of the Gundam's beam rifle. In a case of Gameplay and Story Segregation, it (and the unlockable Gundam Beam Rifle) can be reloaded, albeit slowly, a technology not introduced for several years after the One Year War.
  • Hero of Another Story: The events of the game happen at the same time as the original anime, covering the adventures of another Federation team. The White Dingos actually mention the White Base crew, though some of their members don't believe the stories.
  • Hover Tank: The Mobile Armor Rhinoceros, the only unit that doesn't appear in any previous series, is basically an artillery gun emplacement mounted on four massive hovercraft engine housings with the head and most of the upper body of a Zaku stuck to the front in order to steer it.
  • Lower-Deck Episode: The game functions as a lower deck episode for the Gundam metaseries, not unlike Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team. The campaign isn't about winning the war (or even turning the tide), but their contributions are important and more personal. It's also considerably less outlandish than the other series, eschewing the absolutely bonkers technological (and Psychic Powers) arms race, and instead of being a The Chosen One who fell into the cockpit, the characters are already hardened soldiers.
  • Midseason Upgrade:
    • While requiring the player to perform a mission correctly, the White Dingos receive the Mass-Production Guncannon about midway through the game, which while lacking melee has more firepower and armor than their previous units.
    • For the final battle, the White Dingo Team all receive GM Sniper II units, which are just an all around improvement over everything else they have. Notably, canonically, the GM Sniper II is comparable to the Gundam in terms of stats.
  • Story Branching: In the second mission, completing the mission or not(there is a chance to "fail" the mission without losing) determines the weapons the enemy will use in the final mission.
  • The Rival: Visch Donahue, ace pilot of the Zeon, forms a rivalry with Fang-1, ultimately culminating in Donahue's canonical death.
  • The Squad: The player takes command of the White Dingoes, an elite mobile suit squadron stationed in the ruins of Australia. The team consists of:
    • Fang-1: The player character, Lieutenant Master Pierce Rayer.
    • Fang-2: Leung Fee-Fai, the stoic second-in-command.
    • Fang-3: Maximillian Berger, the ever jovial default gunner.
    • Oasis: Anita Julianne, Mission Control who doesn't pilot a mobile suit but instead supports the team from a hovertruck.
  • Wave-Motion Gun: A Burst-Liner hyper-mega particle cannon (so called because anything in its line of fire bursts) is stolen by the Zeons in the second mission. If the train carrying it escapes it will be equipped on the Final Boss rather than a conventional artillery piece.