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Video Game / Power Pro-kun Pocket 8

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The One Where you wonder "Do robots dream of electric Baseball"?

Power Pro-kun Pocket 8 is a 2005 Baseball simulator + dating sim + Minesweeper developed by Pawapuro Productions, formerly Diamond Head, and published by Konami for the Nintendo DS. The Baseball simulator engine has been changed again, and features a Sprite/Polygon Mix with larger character sprites. Like in 3, the Inner Success is just a Minesweeper clone, but it does have a little storyline.

Outer Success Mode: Special Mission Hunter Edition

Cyborgs and Ridiculously Human Robots have become commonplace in the Pawapoke setting. To regulate them there is the secret CCR police organization, and they have sent a certain agent "Hero 8" to investigate the Oogami Hoppers Baseball team (formely Moles, from 2 and 5) which is suspected of hosting an illegal cyborg. But can he do it when he doesn't know the first thing about Baseball?

Inner Success Mode: Showa Adventure Edition

A direct sequel to Taisho Adventure Edition from Pawapoke 7. The detective protagonist goes on treasure hunts across minefields for his clients.

This game features the following tropes:

  • Anti-Frustration Features: In the Minesweeper game, you can stock items that reveal the location of mines and remove bad items from the board. There's also a jetpack item that lets you skip one board, but it is very rare and you can only keep one copy of it. If you're standing on a 0 panel, you can perform a Spin Attack to reveal all surrounding panels at once.
  • Art Evolution: The game's spritework has been rehauled for the Nintendo DS' higher resolution.
  • Becoming the Mask: Hero 8 infiltrates the Hoppers team without knowing anything about Baseball but makes honest efforts to help them win. Should you get the best ending, he becomes a professional ballplayer.
  • Black Comedy Rape: Seiji Onizame is still part of the Moles turned Hoppers staff and helps with Hero 8's muscle training, which like in 5 is suggested to involve dubious methods — note the implied Rape Discretion Shots and the loss of the Trajectory stat when those happen. Said Training from Hell can even kill the protagonist and befriending Seiji too much results in a bad ending where he continues to stalk him.
  • Collection Sidequest: You can use Power Points to purchase a variety of parody toys and then view them on Bonda's museum.
  • Continuing is Painful: You actually get infinite continues now, but you're still punished every time you retry the story. After enough game overs, your stats will hit rock-bottom and persisting any further is pointless.
  • Creative Closing Credits: The staff roll shows scenes from previous games, mainly featuring the Glasses Clan guys that starred in each of them. The final shot shows Hero 8 walking around a field, and then cuts to a The End illustration of him brandishing a bat and a gun.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • It's the first Nintendo DS entry and the controls are more like the ones from the SNES' Power Pro games. For example, instead of pressing Direction+A to throw the ball to a base, each action button represents a base.
    • In the Spinning Vacuum minigame that's based on Contra, the Spread Shot is not the S power-up. Instead it is "W", which probably stands for "wide" ("W" typically stands for "Double" in Japan, but the Spread shot is 3-way instead).
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • In 6, the crayon doll Horuhisu was a minor character and in 7 he was the True Final Boss of Taisho Adventure. From this game onwards, Horuhisu is reduced to making cameos on certain minigames.
    • In Showa Adventure, Kameda has a new Gundar Golem to cause trouble as usual... but it explodes on a minefield before we even see what it looks like.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In Tomoko's route, certain conditions must be fulfilled to ensure she survives the story after Hero 8 learns she is an android and the Cyborg Alliance is attacked by the CCR. If done right, the two eventually reunite during the epilogue.
  • Endless Game: Showa Adventure goes on for as long as you can endure and stops having story events at board 100. You can finish it from the shopkeeper menu after you clear 15 boards, but you need 25 to actually see a proper ending.
  • Easter Egg: If you touch and hold the top-left corner of the screen in the minigame menu, the game runs the shooting range minigame.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: When Hero 8 finds the CCR itself is controlled by criminal cyborgs, he warns his partner Fukiko about it but she attempts to shoot him dead. She does that even if she's the chosen Love Interest, although she feels guilt over it.
  • Featureless Protagonist: Hero 8 is made distinct from most Power Pros by the outfit he wears... just in the story's opening.
  • Final Boss: Fukiko and Haibara are fought back-to-back at the true ending, but you can skip the first.
  • Game-Breaking Bug:
    • If you register over 60 characters the system breaks and it becomes impossible to either register new ones or even view epilogues after beating the Success mode. This forces players to completely reset the cartridge's data.
    • The Minesweeper game is known to rarely spawn mines where they aren't supposed to be, even around tiles marked with a zero. If the spin attack is used to clear away the surrounding tiles, the misplaced mines won't trigger.
  • Game Over: Despite having infinite continues, you can still get your custom character erased from the absolute worst ending where Hero 8 leaves both Hoppers and the CCR. The game over screen even got changed so the "終" kanji now fills the entire top screen and irradiates an incredibly smug aura.
  • Game-Over Man: If Hero 8 is killed, you see him amongst angels flapping his way towards the sky in a silly singing pose. Can be something of a Mood Whiplash.
  • Genre-Busting: From here on, Konami began marketing the series as "Baseball Variety" instead of as a sports simulator.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: The antagonist of the final chapter of Showa Adventure is not Kameda but instead a Saori-chan who seemingly appears as a normal person instead of a doll this time, though Yuda notes her mouth doesn't move when she talks.
  • Interface Spoiler: Avoided. You can unlock the final boss minigame for free play before you find it in the story proper, but the three antagonists you're supposed to fight will start out locked and hidden.
  • It's a Wonderful Failure:
    • Clearing the story but failing all objectives makes Hero 8 leave both the CCR and Hoppers, resulting in the worst ending, the loss of the custom character and a game over that displays the dreaded "終" ("end", in the sense of death) screen.
    • In one of Tomoko's bad endings, she erases Hero 8's memories of their school days but is suddenly attacked and blown to pieces by Haibara. Afterwards, Hero 8 is seen visiting their bench on a park but not knowing why he's wracked by a feeling of loss. Her other bad ending leaves her fate ambiguous, and so Hero 8 keeps waiting for her on their meeting place.
    • The game over screen for Pennant mode shows the protagonist lying on his face in the middle of a street, forever shamed for failing to become The Best in Japan.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Haibara wields a katana folded over 100 times that's capable of shooting razor winds.
  • Look Behind You: Fukiko attempts this on the protagonist if he discovers the truth behind their organization. The obvious choice is to ignore Fukiko and then fight her in a top-down shooter minigame, but depending on your stats you can actually fall for it and then react in time by either injuring Fukiko or blasting the gun out of her hand.
  • Mysterious Past: Hero 8 has an unknown background.
  • Nerf: Batters aren't always awarded the first base upon being hit by a pitch anymore. They have to get hit while far enough from the strike zone, but unlike in real life it doesn't register whether or not they have attempted to avoid the pitch.
  • New Game Plus:
    • As usual, you can use points to purchase up to three items for the second playthrough of Special Mission Hunter and onwards.
    • You can enter custom characters in My Pennant mode to play a year-long season.
    • Clearing Showa Adventure grants you access to different endings for the next playthroughs.
  • Nintendo Hard: The Spinning Vacuum minigame is a Contra parody with two stages. During Mission Hunter you're required to just clear the first stage with 8 lives, and it's pretty tough — though mostly for Fake Difficulty reasons. Although you have a run button, enemies spawn at fixed points of the level and will overwhelm you if you don't take things slowly. Your jump is high, floaty and has a fixed height. Enemy positions are frequently designed such that if you don't destroy them immediately with the "Wide" shot or something you'll end up jumping out of the way only to crash into something else. And you only get 4 lives to clear both levels in free play mode.
  • Non-Standard Character Design: Like the previous Saori-chans, the one in Showa Adventure has a normal-looking face instead of the mouthless chibi look of the other characters.
  • Non-Standard Game Over: As mentioned above, is possible to fail the story despite winning the final tournament. You'll lose your custom character, and unlike in 6 the game won't even give you Power Points for that.
  • Recycled In Space: Like in 6, the protagonist is an agent who infiltrates a Baseball team in search of a criminal. The difference is that one of them really is the culprit this time.
  • The Reveal: The CCR organization is really a division of the corrupt Wolf conglomerate that is actually instigating the conflict between humans and androids. Fukiko and Haibara are well aware that Hero 8 is being sent on a fool's errand.
  • Schrödinger's Question: In the opening cutscene of Showa Adventure, you must decide in a dialogue tree why is it that the protagonist came to explore a dangerous minefield in a jungle. You start with just one scenario and must unlock the rest one after the other.
  • Skill Scores and Perks: There is a Study mechanic to complement the standard Training option. You must use a different kind of skill points on it and you must commit to a path on the tree. Choosing a different path of traits just wastes all your progress.
  • Something Else Also Rises: From here on there is a Trajectory stat that affects how high the ball flies after a hit (not to the point they all become pop flies). It is presented as an arrow pointing upwards and is used for sexual innuendo scenes in story scenarios.
  • Sound Test: From here on, the Sound Test menu is available from the beginning.
  • Think of the Censors!: In Somushi's scenario for Showa Adventure, she talks about her family to Hero 7B and half of her dialogue is bleeped out when she goes over the circunstances or her birth. Yuda starts shouting that Power Pro-kun Pocket 8 will be cancelled at this rate, as if what she told them is worse than the goat-fucking and executions two installments ago...
  • Tilesweeper: The alternate mode is a Minesweeper game where you must get across the field while avoiding mines. Like in Pawapoke 3, it was included because the developers had no experience with the Nintendo DS hardware to finish a RPG mode before the release date but they did include a story this time.
  • Unexpected Gameplay Change:
    • You will likely come across three minigames at fixed points of Mission Hunter. In particular, the Spinning Vacuum run and gun that's a Contra clone has to be cleared once found or you'll get a game over.
    • The New Year fortune minigame is a more complicated version of the shooting range from 7.
    • The fight against the criminal cyborg and the final bosses is portrayed as a top-down shooting game.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Somushi keeps telling contradictory stories about her past to Hero 7B in Showa Adventure.