Follow TV Tropes


Video Game / Super Robot Wars Advance

Go To

The first Super Robot Wars title for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance, Super Robot Wars Advance was released in 2001 and features some of the Nintendo Hard difficulty in the same vein of older SRWs, and borrows a lot of mechanical designs from Super Robot Wars 64. It is the only game in the franchise where shields are given a seperate Hit Points gauge. Unfortunately, like previous SRWs, Advance can't skip combat animations, which didn't sit quite too well for many fans.

In 2008, Advance was given a Video Game Remake for the Sony PlayStation Portable, titled Super Robot Wars A Portable (not Advance/Advanced Portable, since it's no longer on the Game Boy Advance), boasting Super Robot Wars Original Generations visuals, voice acting, modern gameplay mechanics (such as selectable pilot skills), skippable combat animations and many other improvements. Yet, the difficulty is taken up to eleven, thus fans are divided whether A Portable was a good remake or not.

The story revolves around the warmongering organization "Shadow-Mirror", who sends out one of its members to spy on an Alternate Universe before its primary force enters. Depending on the player, they can choose either the Shadow-Mirror's Ace Pilot Axel Almer or the newly created android of the W-Numbers series W-17, codenamed "Lamia Loveless". Unfortunately for them, due to a mess up in the interdimesional jump to another universe, they receive a certain misfortune (Easy Amnesia for Axel, Speech Impediment for Lamia) and actually align themselves with the heroes, thereby betraying the Shadow-Mirror.

A Fan Translation for A Portable has been released by Steel Soul.

This game includes the following series (debut series highlighted in bold):

Tropes associated to with Super Robot Wars Advance:

  • 10-Minute Retirement: After the finale of Daitarn 3 and Don Zauser is dead, Banjo locks himself in his own quarters within Londo Bell, mirroring the ending in his home series. And he's back in the next mission, deciding that he can't keep up such a downer act for a long time, with his excuse being "I was so happy that I cried, I didn't want you guys to see."
  • A-Team Firing: A Portable is known for its unusually high evasion rates, to the point that some late game bosses (most notably, Lemon and her Weiss Saber) require several missed attacks for the player to even gain the mathematical possibility of hitting them. It is for this reason that units carrying the accuracy-raising EWAC ability/part become extremely valuable.
  • Alternate Universe: The game marks the first time Super Robot Wars dabbled in alternate universes (rather than Bad Future like Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden), something that will become pretty much a commonplace in future titles. The Shadow-Mirror hails from a universe running almost similarly with the main verse, but there were several key differences in the events there that makes both worlds' histories running differently.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Olban in the original is the definition of Dirty Coward, only relying on his guards and manipulations, and going down easily when Richter corners him. In this game, however, he actually piloted the final Balm Battle Machine himself and proves himself to be a tough boss, and also provides a Body Double strategy, with the double being just as strong as him.
    • Wong Yunfat is a much bigger threat here, both as a manipulator and as a fighter. This is mostly because he also has to take the role of the Adapted Out Ulube on top of the role he already had in the show. This means he remains a threat even after losing his political power, making an alliance with Giganos and Shadow Mirror, as well as resurrecting the Devil Gundam a second time and piloting the Grand Master Gundam. A huge step up from his Big Bad Wannabe status in his home series.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Raiza in this game was less of a bitch compared to her original version (even if both versions had Undying Loyalty to Richter). A lot of her more questionable actions such as emotionally manipulating Erika and threatening to punish her friends for it were omitted, and rather than getting an unceremonious death, she also willingly goes with Richter to pull off a Heroic Sacrifice together, stating that if Richter has sinned, she also sinned and must atone as well.
  • Adaptation-Induced Plot Hole: The Gundam GP02 can only carry one nuke, which is used for Operation Stardust. However, from a gameplay perspective, having Gato lose the strongest weapon of his Gundam before fighting the player is too much of a handicap, so they have Karius supply him with another nuke after the attack on Solomon, with this being the implied handwave for Gato still having a nuke in every subsequent battle with him. Which begs the question of why he went through so much trouble to steal the GP02 in first place, seeing how the Zeon remnants seem to have a healthy supply of nukes already.
  • Adapted Out:
    • Ulube Ishikawa is absent in the game, but the whole Devil Colony arc still happened... except that it's carried out by Wong Yunfat, who Took a Level in Badass as opposed to his original 'disposable second fiddle' status in the original series.
    • Zu Zambajil is absent, the Boazanian invasion is wholly spearheaded by Heinel, though Zambajil's role as Heinel's superior is taken by King Vega.
    • The Zambot 3 cast is reduced to the main pilot and Heizaemon, who only appeared in the introduction of the Zambot plot. Which means that King Beal does not even appear.
    • The secondary cast of the Real Robot shows took a huge hit in this game. The Albion is absent, as are every member of its crew save for Kou, Nina, and Burning. Despite Shirou still being the leader of the 08th MS Team, none of the members of the team besides him shows up. Also, of all the Federation-aligned characters from Metal Armor Dragonar, only the main trio, Linda, and Kaine's mother are in this game. This likely because, with everyone joining the same team, the characters from other series can play the same role as the missing characters, making them redundant. For example, Noin and Burning become the mentors of the Dragonar team in place of Ben.
  • Anachronism Stew: Universal Century Gundam has plenty of this, mainly due to Advance adding numerous 0079 characters despite the game taking place circa Char's Counterattack. For starters, we have the Char's Counterattack iteration of Amuro Ray starting out by piloting the original RX-78 Gundam, along with Ramba Ral, the Black Tri-Stars and Lalah showing up as well, not to mention the 0079 iteration of Char Aznable (Who later on changes to his Quattro Bajeena persona). A few Psyco Gundams piloted by Four Murasame and Rosamia Badam show up too.
    • Downplayed with Getter Robo. While the Getter Team begins with all of its original members while fighting against the villains of Getter Robo G, Musashi can still die if the requirements for his survival aren't met, with Benkei taking his place as normal. On the other hand, references to the Dinosaur Empire were still thrown here and there, implying that Musashi survived the battle against the Dinosaur Empire, when originally it was his death that made victory possible against the Dinosaur Empire.
    • For the Mazinger Z saga, Kouji has already met Duke Fleed before he returned in the final legs of Great Mazinger where Tetsuya's jealousy issues against him started to flare up (and they're already like that ''in the beginning of the game), and even then, he's also aware of Duke's presence.
  • The Artifact:
    • A Portable was the first SRW to be published by Bandai Namco. However, since development almost certainly wrapped up before the SRW team was folded into Bamco, it still sports the Banpresto logo and the originals are called Banpresto Originals. References to Banpresto would be quietly phased out over the next few games.
    • Characters don't have animated portraits and there's only one song played in story scenes because that's how things were in the original Super Robot Wars A. Though this didn't stop them from adding map BGM that was absent in A.
  • Background Music Override: While pretty common throughout the series, fighting Char Aznable will have the music overridden by his theme, "Here Comes Char". In A Portable, this apparently gets a similar treatment with "Trombe!", in the original A, when Quattro joins, he had his show's theme "Mizu no Hoshi e ai wo Komete". But in A Portable, they forgot to assign him the Zeta Gundam theme, so he's still stuck with "Here Comes Char", and thus creating a Dramatic Irony that the cast only suspects that Quattro is Char, whereas the players, even if they haven't watched the show, knows that he's totally Char.
  • Becoming the Mask:
    • The chosen protagonist, either Axel or Lamia, was originally supposed to scout out the main dimension for Shadow Moon. Cue Easy Amnesia (for Axel) or Becoming A Real Girl (for Lamia), and they end up aligning with the various heroes of said dimension.
    • Thanks to the events, since the Axis Drop was eventually initiated by Vindel Mauser, Char ends up embracing the Quattro Bajeena persona for the remainder of his life, with no turning back.
  • Big Bad: Vindel Mauser
  • Butt-Monkey: Bright tries really hard to keep a serious mood, befitting of a proper military force, when Yurika is around. He isn't very successful. Making matters worse for him, even Amuro thinks it's funny.
  • Combination Attack: With twenty-six different combination attacks in the game, A Portable has more combination attacks than nearly any other entry in the franchise. Great Mazinger can have up to seven different combination attacks available simultaneously while God Gundam can have up to six. More tools for busting out big damage and getting past that pesky HP retreat threshold (especially when Tetsuya usually always had Valor when he rejoins for good.)
  • Commonality Connection: Master Asia got along well with Professor Yotsuya due to shared disgust with how humanity were constantly wrecking Earth. Fortunately, Yotsuya has changed his mind faster in believing the potential of mankind's goodness (while Master Asia took longer to realize or pays with his death) and thus refused Master Asia's offer for Villain Team-Up.
  • Do I Really Sound Like That?: During the climax of Daimos, Zechs Merquise notes that he recognizes Erika's eye to be the kind to not give up easily in the face of temptation because he knows someone who has the same eye too well. The nearby Relena Peacecraft, who has been helping Erika throughout the story, has a Visible Silence; she knows that Zechs was referring to her, but she didn't expect that Erika would be similar to her all too well.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: Super Robot Wars A is the first in a line of nine largely-iterative standalone games on Nintendo handhelds and is very peculiar relative to the rest of them, owing to the fact that it released as the series was in the middle of moving away from the Super Robot Wars F/F Final template and into more modern form. Oddities include:
    • Animations cannot be skipped.
    • Outside of the debuting Dragonar and Nadesico, every single series was either in SRW 4/F/FF or has close ties to another series that was in those games.note  Every other Nintendo handheld game has noteworthy twists and quirks with regards to their respective rosters; even the next game, which largely carries over A's roster, ditches the 70s Getter Robo series for Shin Getter Robo vs Neo Getter Robo.
    • Gespensts show up as Elite Mooks. The Gespenst had its status as a Recurring Element revoked shortly after, being confined to the Original Generation series beyond an occasional cameo where it's treated like a Guest Fighter.
    • The heroic force is Londo Bell, whereas other Nintendo handheld armies go by entirely-original names.
    • There is a system where shields have their own HP that must be depleted before a mech starts taking damage; this doesn't carry over to any other Super Robot Wars, not even A Portable.
    • The game uses the stat system from F and F Final, which means a "reaction" pilot stat and "limit" unit stat.
  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Depending on your route choices, it's possible to only have nearly the entire cast of Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ for four stages. The Gundam Wing cast isn't much better, being present throughout most of the story but only joining the Londo Bell in the last third.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Or more downplayed to 'Even Jerk Racists Have Standards'. When Miwa harasses Miyuki for being an Oni and the daughter of an enemy despite already being on the good guys' side, aside of Michiru; Jack and Mary, the two 'offensive American stereotype characters' of the series, also came to defend Miyuki, definitely not approving of Miwa's brand of racism.
  • Expy: With the exception of the Gespenst, all original mecha in Advance are cut-and-paste copies of the original machines from 64.
    • What makes this guessing so spot-on is how the Advance back-story is closely identical to the 64 plot: the Shadow-Mirror and the Original Generation villains from 64 have the same motivations, along with the 64 protagonists winding up as a sort-of "heroic" Shadow-Mirror equivalent. Additionally, both games feature a reference to the Gespenst MK III, better known by its codename "Alt Eisen" from Super Robot Wars Compact 2. Considering how current SRW series producer Takenobu Terada treats the fanbase...
  • Foreshadowing: Although it was foreshadowed much earlier in 64, Axel makes mention of a Gespenst MK III back in their dimension before entering the Advance universe. In Super Robot Wars Original Generation 2, a large part of the story is the rivalry between Axel and the pilot of the Alt Eisen.
    • Advance also mentions "W16", another android of the W-Numbers, who doesn't appear in the game proper, but shows up fully in Original Generation 2, under the codename "Echidna Iisaki".
  • Fix Fic: In this title where Martian Successor Nadesico debuts, the game gives one about the fate of Gai Daigoji, success or failure still leads to a fix. If you fulfill the requirements, Gai simply survives the story. If you didn't, Gai dies Taking the Bullet meant for Nadesico, meaning that rather than given a sudden, undignified death, he gets to die like a hero, just like in Gekiganger 3.
  • Get a Hold of Yourself, Man!: In spite of the presence of Bright Noah and he did slap Kaine Wakaba after he returned from desertion, it was not in spirit of the trope. (Bright was just doing a procedural reprimanding) The actual trope happened during the climax of Daimos plot: Kazuya was about to enter Heroic BSoD when he witnessed Erika's love declaration for Olban that he was deluding themselves to be in love. Nana then decks him in the face, telling him that he's jumping to the wrong conclusion too hastily, with Zechs confirming that Erika's eyes doesn't look like someone happy, and she's plotting something (assassinating Olban when they're close enough.)
  • Guest-Star Party Member: In the Earth Route for scenario 8, Schwarz Bruder appears to help you at level 10, with some incredibly overpowered stats and all six Spirit Commands at his disposal. Due to what you're up against, he's more than crucial.
    • Sayla Mass joins the party in the early Space Route for several scenarios, until she suddenly leaves for the rest of the game.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Just after The Reveal occurs that sets the event for the chosen protagonist's failed Heroic Sacrifice against the Big Bad.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
  • How Unscientific!: Sums up Nina's opinion on all the Super Robots in the team. She is baffled they even work without blowing up, and makes it clear that she would rather stick to her Gundams.
  • Karma Houdini: Subverted. Haruki Kusakabe was The Unfought, survived the story and didn't get killed. But in the ending, many Martians became inspired with Londo Bell's efforts for peace and launched a coup against him, putting him out of power and draining him of the resources he needed to initiate the Prince of Darkness plot, while advocating for peace between Martians and Earthlings. Kusakabe may have lived, but he and his twisted ideals of justice are screwed either way.
  • Made of Iron: The protagonist withstanding being punched by both Domon Kasshu and Kazuya Ryuuzaki, at the same time. Lamia gets hit RIGHT AT THE VITALS and shrugs them off just fine, though relatively justified since she's an android (thus a literal example), but the very human Axel manages to stay on his feet, clutching his stomach. It's later revealed Domon and Kazuya BARELY missed his vitals; Axel vaguely dodged it by reflex.
  • Mid-Season Upgrade: One of the few instances in SRW where it's averted - Axel and Lamia's starting machine gets upgraded in no way, shape, or form. The closest you get is unlocking the mecha's final attack when they hit level 20, but Level Grinding can get you the attack quite quickly.
  • The Mole: Whoever the chosen protagonist is
  • Mutually Exclusive Party Members: There are a few units that won't be in the same hangar:
  • Mythology Gag: In the Shadow-Mirror universe, Amuro Ray died in the Battle of A Baoa Qu. In the Mobile Suit Gundam novelization written by Yoshiyuki Tomino, this is how Amuro meets his end.
  • New Work, Recycled Graphics: A Portable is the absolute champion of this trope when it comes to Super Robot Wars. Not even the developers tried to hide that this game came into existence precisely because every single series was in another PS2-era SRW.
    • The battle animation engine is based on Original Generations, with the background zooming and tilting that OGs introduces. Despite this, Banpresto reused as much as they possibly could from Super Robot Wars MX, only making changes when there's a discrepancy with a unit's original Super Robot Wars A movelist. The explosions used in the animations are an easy way to determine whether an attack came from MX, as MX-style explosions are jarringly different from the Original Generations-styled explosions that the other attacks use.
    • Units that weren't in MX are given a graphical facelift, as MX represented an Art Evolution over the Alpha series. However, this trope comes into play with their animations. While some units like Combattler V are largely done from scratch, others like Shin Getter-1 very clearly use Alpha 3 choreography as a base with light modifications to the unit's "skeleton" to accomodate the updated sprites. There are numerous other instances of animations being reused, remixed, or heavily referencing older animations, such as a number of Beam Saber animations being derived from a generic sword animation in Original Generations.
    • The originals are, of course, directly ported from Original Generations.
    • There are three types of character portraits: crystal-clear mugshots done in the style of (the then-unreleased) Super Robot Wars Z, slightly blurry pictures ported directly from MX, and ridiculously-blurry ones taken from Alpha 2 and Alpha 3.
  • Nintendo Hard: The original game was already pretty tough, but A Portable sets out to translate the challenge of the late 90s Super Robot Wars games to the 21st century — before tossing on a boatload of nerfs to accuracy and evasion, completely changing how the game is played. Not only is the player's accuracy much lower than average, the introduction of "Successive Target Adjustment" which lowers a unit's evasion each time they dodge an attack heavily favors enemy Mooks. This forces the use of Spirit Commands to mitigate the accuracy issue, which means less opportunities to use damage-increasing, healing, or other Spirit Commands. And just to add insult to injury, A Portable attempts to combat Save Scumming by having the same result occur regardless of the game being reset.
  • No One Could Survive That!: Axel/Lamia surviving the self-destruction of their Mecha is explained by said Mecha having an ejection pod, which Lemon quickly finds. No such explanation is given for them surviving being at point-blank range of the self-destruction of the Zweizergain in the final stage.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: In Moon Dwellers, Axel can't help but to sympathize with Jua-Mu's obsession, like he used to be with Kyosuke.
    Axel:You know, it's not like I don't understand that obsession.
  • Original Generation: Axel, Lamia and the Shadow-Mirror; for the mecha, the Angelg, Soulgain, Vysaga, Ashsaver, Laz Angriff, Gespenst MK II, Zweizergain and Weiss Saber (A Portable exclusive)
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: The exclusive Super Robot originals - Axel gets the blue Soulgain, Lamia gets the pink Angelg.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: If the player chooses Axel as the protagonist, Shadow-Mirror mooks will use the feminine Angelg in the last few scenarios.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Hand-in-hand with the gratuitous graphical reuse, A Portable uses a soundtrack heavily pulled from Super Robot Wars MX, Alpha 2, Alpha 3, and Original Generations, to the extent that some series like Grendizer and G Gundam completely change Leitmotifs to use whatever theme they had in MX. The only new battle themes composed for the game are the opening themes of Zambot 3, Nadesico, and 08th MS Team, Mobile Suit Gundam's "Ai Senshi" and "Here Comes Char", and the Shadow-Mirror theme "Chaos"; this is likely because most of these series only had the heavily-stylized Impact and/or GC mixes of their themes available.
  • The Rival: Whoever the player doesn't select as the protagonist becomes the chosen protagonist's rival for the duration of the game.
  • Secret Character
  • Shapeshifter Mode Lock: Getter Robo and Getter Robo G are mode-locked into Getter-1 and Getter Dragon when the Getter Team gets new machines. This allows them to fight at 100% power without needing all three pilots.
  • Shout-Out: Exclusively in A Portable, mixed alongside Actor Allusion, there's a chance Axel will say "LISTEN TO MY SCREAM!! - now's not the time to be saying that!" Nobutoshi Canna voices Axel and Basara Nekki of Macross 7.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Done by Haran Banjou to Haman Karn
  • Super Title 64 Advance: Super Robot Wars Advance for the Game Boy Advance, Super Robot Wars A Portable for the PlayStation Portable. A Portable is the second case of a sequel/remake of a GBA game having to shorten the "Advance" in its usage of this trope to "A" because it's not on the GBA anymore.
  • Spared by the Adaptation:
    • Prince Heinel and his aide/would-be love interest Katherine were not killed and the final battle went differently because Zu Zambajil was Adapted Out and no one was going to Boazan on-screen: Heinel summoned the final enemy in the undersea castle, and then after being defeated, Katherine shot him with a tranquilizer... but instead of going back to Boazan, she took him to a place far away in space, knowing that returning to the Vega Alliance means that King Vega would execute them for failure, but she'll continue to stay by his side forever. The Voltes V plot ended there, skipping out the parts where Katherine made her Heroic Sacrifice for Heinel and Heinel biting the dust later on.
    • As usual, the Zambot 3 crews, because the plot ended after Butcher died, there was no part of the Bandok controlled by Gaizok running amok and requiring Uchuta and Keiko to get killed off to make way for Kappei to get into the final confrontation.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: The standard reaction whenever Londo Bell is informed that Miwa is about to contact them.
  • Tranquil Fury: Shortly before he went utterly apeshit against Miwa, Kazuya was completely silent in the face of Miwa spewing all kinds of warmongering threats against the team, and only uttered a low "Move it." when Heero was about to shoot Miwa. And that completely stopped Heero and forced him to obey, apparently his Tranquil Fury overwhelmed someone like him.
  • Transformation Name Announcement: Spoofed by Gai Daigoji in response of Kazuya's "DAAAAIIIMOOOOOSSS!!!"
  • Unrelated in the Adaptation: In this story, Heinel and Kentaro Go/LaGour and thus Kenichi, Daijiro and Hiyoshi are unrelated, their relations go only as far as being Worthy Opponent to each other.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: When Richter retreated fully to Small Balm to investigate Olban's issues, he still had his main underlings Balbas and Raiza. But when he re-appeared in the finale, only Raiza pops up with him, with no mentions of Balbas. Presumably, he died an off-screen death while helping Richter.