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Video Game / SteamWorld Heist

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It's time to kick some chassis!

You know a brigher day's just a way ahead, what we need are some heroes
With wheels of iron and hearts in the stars
through the darkest of days, they'll ride out into the sunset
Hope overflowing, they'll construct a new day from the bad....

A Turn-Based Strategy game for the Nintendo 3DS released on December 10th, 2015, taking place in the Shared Universe as the preceding Steamworld title, SteamWorld Dig. It was later ported to Playstation 4, PlayStation Vita, Wii U, PC, Nintendo Switch, and iOS.

The Earth, as it was in Dig, is no more. Kaputski. An Earth-Shattering Kaboom has turned it into a bajillion pieces floating in space, and so the Steambots now ride their steamboats across the vastness of the Cosmos and squabble over the precious resources from its pieces.

The player takes command of space pirate captain Piper Faraday, and will lead her and her ever-growing crew into battle - first against the maniacal Scrappers that killed most of her old crew, and then against the Queen's Royal Space Force, the oppressive diesel-powered water-independent aggressors that they are.

The game utilizes a side-view akin to a side-scroller but handles similarly to the rebooted XCOM in terms of equipment, movement, cover and combat phases.

In April 28, 2016, The Outsider DLC expansion was released. It included the titular crew member, as well as new missions, new weapons and oh so many new hats.

This game contains examples of the following:

  • And the Adventure Continues: After the game ends, most of the crew expresses the wish to stay on with Piper for further adventures, which, Sequel Hook considered, may just be around the corner for them.
  • Amazon Brigade: Once your team grows enough, you can easily deploy an all-girl team. In fact, the first lineup for said team (Piper, Sally, Beatrix) is very balanced between brutality and accuracy.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: When reinforcements appear, the game will restrict their turn based upon how close they are to the team. If the team is right next to the door, they won't move at all, if they far enough away to get at, the reinforcements will move, but cannot take a shot. This readily prevents cheep shots, but if they spawn further away still gives them a chance to catch up.
  • Art Shift: The previous game's SD-like style has been replaced by a more human-proportioned one, but still retains a similar approach to how the Steambots look and animate. The main shift was in the character proportions.
  • Attack Reflector: The Spiked Armor damages anyone who tries to melee its wearer.
  • Bait-and-Switch: After exploring the captured alien ship in Royalist Space, some players might assume the captured 'alien' is a human. Nope. You just freed Vectron.
  • Bayonet Ya: The Royal soldiers may come in a baoynet-equipped rifleman variety. They make good use of it in melee.
  • Boring Yet Practical: Piper's abilities aren't flashy. She can't bring along a free rocket launcher, fire a tesla coil, snipe as well as Valentine, tank as well as Ivanski, or kill as well as Sally and Seabrass. What she *can* do is make all of them much better at their jobs, and completely repair the entire team in one turn. She can dish out some respectable damage if you give her a decent gun, too.
  • Cargo Cult: The Ancient Steam, a rare treasure you might find on Vectron missions, is a clothes iron. It is believed by the bots to be the first steambot, defending itself with its electrical whip (its plug) and flying with its steam jets (the part where the steam comes out to iron the clothes).
  • Character Customization: Hats hats hats. To get more hats, you have to shoot them off your enemies' heads; merely killing them will not make their hat obtainable. There's also a hat store!
  • Con Artist: Payroll. He's also one of approximately two crew members we hire rather than save or convince into joining. The other is Valentine, though it's more his being a very old bot and wanting some form of deposit if the adventuring life doesn't work out.
  • Cool Old Guy: Valentine. He's adamant about not spending the rest of his lifespan in an old 'bots retirement home.
  • Critical Status Buff: Sally's The Berserker ability makes her eyes glow a demented crimson and boosts her damage output.
  • Defector from Decadence:
    • Piper was once an Ace Pilot for the Royalists, but chose to desert after they tried to trick her into bombing a civilian town.
    • This is why Dora joins the crew despite working for the Red Queen; her Majesty was demanding her to look for things that Dora knew were complete fabrications and not actually anything concrete as she's supposed to.
  • Deflector Shields: The last area has little crystal orbs that project force fields around any voltbots within range. Some larger voltbots can carry a shield orb on their back, which must be destroyed before the bearer or nearby allies take damage. Chop Sue also activates one after taking a certain amount of damage.
  • Developer's Foresight:
    • Got your hat shot off? You can put it back on. Or any other hat that's currently on the floor.
    • Every character has a reaction to having been killed and revived, some of which further their backstories.
    • Some shots ricochet off forcefields rather than be absorbed by them. You can knock out a forcefield emitter via ricochet off of the field generated by it. Similarly, a piercing shot that knocks out an emitter may yet reach and damage whoever the forcefield protected.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: The Red Queen seems to be the main villain for the first two acts of the game, but once she's dealt with, Vectron shows up.
  • Drugs Are Bad: Parodied by the Volcanic Coal item blurb.
    Remember, winners don't use coal!
  • Everybody's Dead, Dave:
    • Piper's story begins with an aversion of this. All of her original crew have been taken by the Scrappers, but Wonky was able to make it out alive, and your first mission is to rescue Seabrass, who is the only other one you successfully rescue.
    • The DLC reveals that Fen survived the end of Dig 2. However, they were found in deep space by the Royalists, and is implied to have been there for the past four centuries. Meaning Dot never managed to save Fen like she promised.
  • Experience Points: These are earned by completing objectives. Unlike most games with this system, none are earned from killing enemies.
  • Fame Gate: Some portions of each of the three world maps are cordoned off by a node requiring you to have a certain number of stars (gained by successfully completing missions) in that region before you can proceed. On a smaller scale, some vendors will only sell you their best stock after you gain enough stars.
  • Farm Girl: Sally. Plays against most Country Mouse stereotypes in that she's rude, violent and mostly in this to earn enough Gallons to get herself a new farm to replace the one confiscated by the Evil Empire.
  • Fiery Redhead: Should she lose her hat (or wear the Crown as it's pretty small), you'll see that unlike most 'bots, Piper has what would look like a red buzzcut had she been human. Her face may be khaki-yellow, but her head is red!
  • Flash Step:
  • Gentlewoman And A Scholar: Dora, the former royal scientist that joins the crew out of a desire to study whatever was in the ancient capsule.
  • Hat Damage: Shooting off hats is actually important to the game as you can only gain a hat worn by an enemy if you shoot it off first. Especially important for bosses. Thankfully, if a hat is ever shot off one of your 'bots, you won't lose it from the equipment list (but you can go back it put it on again if you find where it fell!).
  • Hijacked by Ganon: The Red Queen is not the Big Bad. Vectron's back!
  • Hive Mind: The Voltbots share a single mind and are unthinkingly hostile to all other sapient life.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The entire game. If it's not dialogue, it's an item description, or mission name or a hat.
  • Husky Russkie: Bogdan Ivanski, circus strongman and Mighty Glacier.
  • I Choose to Stay: At the aftermath of defeating Vectron, Sally, Valentine, and Fen wish to continue traveling with Piper.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills:
    • The crux of the game. The twist is that you have to line up the trick shots yourself to make them happen!
    • Ace, the Royalist commander, takes this to another level, with his shots doing a lot of ricochets before it's (near 100%) guaranteed to hit one of your own. He almost always goes for disabling leg shots.
  • Incendiary Exponent: Oil, everywhere in Royalist space. It drips from certain valves, it spills from breakable barrels, it comes in grenade form and certain enemies can douse your 'bots in it (they will also spill some when they die). If shot with anything, it goes up in flames, doing damage to anything in it or next to it.
  • Jet Pack: "Jump Packs" appear late in act 2 and drastically improve your party's mobility, allowing them to run faster and jump to otherwise unreachable heights.
  • Lady of War: Beatrix is the only experienced soldier in Piper's crew.
  • Life Drain: Billy's "Vampire" passive heals him if he melees anyone to death. Give him a melee-boosting item or two and he can become functionally immortal.
  • Macross Missile Massacre: Bea's multi-shot passive when coupled with a multi-shot weapon like the Desolator inundates the already-cramped spaceships with things that go boom. While invaluable during boss fights or to cull the Respawning Enemies overcrowding you, be mindful of oil patches and Friendly Fire.
  • Made of Iron: Puns aside, all of Bodgan's passives are about surviving ridiculous damage, complete with an active ability to No-Sell any attack for one turn. The latter can also be gained through an equippable item.
  • Meaningful Background Event: Dandy's statue that he made in honor of Rusty in Steamworld Dig, can be seen in the Royal Vault.
  • Me's a Crowd: Jester, who leads the Scrappers in Deep Space in the DLC. He claims they're "mirrors and smoke", but their shots are just as damaging as the real one's. Worse, while they go down in one hit, they instantly respawn.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Chop Sue. Also a Punny Name since she runs an illegal chop shop.
  • Necromancer: Chop Sue, referred to as a "Techromancer" in-game, uses Voltbot technology to raise an army of insane zombie bots from crudely assembled scrap parts. Given that the piece of Vectron you speak with refers to the scrapper "zombie" army when you free it, it's implied she was intentionally given the technology.
  • Never Say "Die":
    • Played completely straight in the Steamworld universe. Killed steambots are "scrapped". This is semi-justified since it's completely possible to reassemble a scrapped bot. And it's even implied that well-maintained bots can live for centuries. On the other hand not all scrapped bots get reassembled, it's entirely possible for them to be permanently dead. This is especially apparent in Heist where your entire crew is scrapped in the cold-open. And it's very clear that they're dead for real. Well, unless the scrappers got to them....
    • Also Seabrass's son, who was eaten by a whale. Seabrass actually averts the trope, and refers to his son being "killed".
  • New Game Plus: Lets you start over while keeping all recruited characters and collected hats, meaning you'll have more money to spend on new guns this time around. All your previous items and experience points are lost, though, but you get a "Postcard From The Frontier" in your inventory.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The Queen had Vectron packed away safely until Piper set it loose.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot:
    • Expected in a game about Space Pirate robots. Billy for example is a former Deep Space Diver turned Space Pirate.
    • Bonus points when you learn most of the Scrappers are zombie robots assembled from pieces of Steambots killed by their pirate brethren.
  • Noodle Incident: Whatever cost Billy his ability to speak probably also was why he left the diver corps.
  • One-Hit Polykill: The whole point of enemy-piercing weapons. If you give one of these to someone who can double their attacks, you get a veritable storm of death, especially if your shots ricochet.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: The Scrappers are a faction of Ax-Crazy robots built out of scrap parts from other dead robots, Whose leader is the mechanial equivalent of a necromancer.
  • People Jars: There are preserved Shiners in Voltbot ships.
  • Pungeon Master: Valentine. The only one who seems to tolerate his puns is Piper, and Seabrass absolutely hates them.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Discussed. Bogdan tried to learn ballet dancing, but clownbots at his circus made fun of him for it. When prompted by Piper, he notes that ballet takes as much strength and bettering of the body as being a strongman like he is. After defeating the Big Bad, he decides he will establish a ballet academy rather than stay on with Piper's crew.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Sally's Berserker ability makes her eyes start glowing and gives her a damage bonus when she's at half health.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: What came out of that ancient capsule the crew wanted to steal from the Queen. Vectron is old enough to remember when the Earth broke up, and it's quite dedicated to resuming its quest to destroy all steambots.
  • Sequel Hook: One of the final shots of the endgame cutscene is a Shiner astronaut, outfitted with a SteamBot arm and clutching a bottle of Moon Juice, sitting astride the skeleton of a giant space serpent.
  • Shield-Bearing Mook: Some of the Royalist grunts have guns with integrated ballistic shielding, requiring you to bounce your shots over or behind it.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Smoke Out: The Queen's guard escapes their first boss fights this way. She herself uses it to Flash Step.
  • Space Is an Ocean: Zigzagged (what spacey physics there are are definitely space-like, but verticality and two-dimensionality is played straight) and discussed a lot, particularly in the context of piracy.
  • Space Pirates: Technically speaking, Piper and her crew, although Seabrass, with his peg leg and Moby Schtick, is the brightest example.
  • Space Western: And a very good one. With saloons, fancy hats, standoffs and the like — and all starring robots.
  • Space Whale: Discussed. As a former non-space whaler, and the only crew member that actually sailed a sea made of water, Seabrass laments they don't exist.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Piper is not only the tallest female playable character, but one of the tallest characters period. Her proportions would be rather attractive if she were human. (Unless you're into that. No judgment.) Unfortunately, this also means almost half of the covers in the game still leave her open to enemy fire.
  • Status Effects: Aside from the Incendiary Exponent, there are also:
    • Being stunned by electric attacks, which makes a unit skip a turn.
    • Being immobilized by special abilities, Ace's trick shots or just being shot in the legs, which renders a unit unable to move (they can still fire, though).
    • Being taunted and attacking only the one target.
  • Talk Like a Pirate: Gyaaaaarrggh! Seabrass be talkin' this way, cap'n! He even says "Shiver me timbers!" when his hat's shot off.
  • Steampunk vs Diesel Punk: The culture clash between the Steambots we're used to in the series prior and Dieselbots that comprise the Evil Empire is a major part of the plot - Dieselbots just don't care about the hardships of a limited water supply in space, which Steambots need for, well, steam.
  • Source Music: Most of the Steam Powered Giraffe songs on the soundtrack can be heard in bars, either on the radio or from the band themselves performing.
  • The Unintelligible: Billy, who can only make gurgling sounds after his Noodle Incident.
  • Unrealistic Black Hole: One appears after defeating Vectron. Going to it takes you to a New Game Plus, which takes you back to after the first mission. Everybody's memories is regressed up to that point in that Wonky is surprised to have a full crew ready. You also get a "Postcard From The Frontier" as proof of your New Game Plus.
  • Use Your Head: Billy's melee attack is a headbutt. He's also your strongest melee combatant, go figure.
  • Wagon Train to the Stars: With the Earth exploded, the robots do everything on their lumpy misshapen steam-powered starships.