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Video Game / Super Robot Wars Alpha

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We'll go into the space over our future.
We're looking for the place under the shining star.
JAM Project, "Skill"

In the year 179 of the New Western Calendar, the One Year War breaks out between the Earth Federation and the Principality of Zeon, but is halted when an object crashes to Earth, landing on South Atalia Island. An investigative team from the "Extra-Over Technological Investigative Institute" discovers the object is an alien battleship with highly-advanced technology. Heeding the warnings of Dr. Bian Zoldark, the Federation secretly increases its military power, while hiding the evidence of intelligent extraterrestrial life beyond the Earth. In the meantime, Bian utilizes "Extra-Over Technology" found on the ship to devise weapons capable of protecting the Earth from alien forces, should the planet become embroiled in conflict.

However, the economic troubles caused by the Federation's buildup sees the rise of many anti-Federation movements, such as the Neo Zeon, who have retreated to the asteroid Axis. In response, the Federation establishes special forces units, including the Titans and the Organization of Zodiac. Other forces, like the Dinosaur Empire and Dr. Hell begin their plans for world domination, but are pushed back by the teams of Mazinger Z, Getter Robo, and Raideen.

In the year 187, the battleship Excelion engages a force of "STMCs" (Space Terrible Monster Crowd) when they are suddenly attacked by another unknown alien fleet, codenamed the "Aerogaters"...

Thus begins the four-part saga of Super Robot Wars Alpha, perhaps the best-known and most popular of all the Super Robot Wars series. It also holds the distinction of introducing the music of JAM Project into the franchise. This page is not enough to cover this series; as a result, there's a recap summary for the finer details.

Series Introduced In Alpha (Bold indicates debuting series)

Making the series' debut on the Sony PlayStation, Alpha was released in May 2000. It's the first Super Robot Wars installment where players can customize allied characters' pilot skills, stats, and terrain ratings. Furthermore, selecting the protagonist is based on the similar process previously used in Super Robot Wars 4. The game also introduces a "Skill Point" system, optional decisions and objectives made in and out of scenarios where game difficulty will increase if more Skill Points are acquired, but gives players better chances of unlocking secret characters, parts and units. This system would be used again in future Super Robot Wars titles, such as the "Battle Mastery" for the Super Robot Wars: Original Generation localization.

A Video Game Remake was released on the Sega Dreamcast in 2001, featuring 3D visuals, increased difficulty, secret boss characters and a cameo of the "G-Breaker", a robot from a Bandai-developed video game called Sunrise Eiyuutan.

Series Introduced In Alpha Gaiden (Bold indicates debuting series)

Released in March 2001 on the PlayStation, Alpha Gaiden cut several series from the cast, some of whom return in the sequels: Gundam F91 reappears in Alpha 2, while Evangelion and Gunbuster return for Alpha 3; Giant Robo, Dunbine, original Gundam, and War In The Pocket do not. In addition, several new series were added, all making their Super Robot Wars debut.

Additionally, Alpha Gaiden is the only game in the saga to receive a Fan Translation.

Series Introduced In Alpha 2 (Bold indicates debuting series)

Heading to the Sony PlayStation 2 on March 2003, Alpha 2 is the first Super Robot Wars to introduce squad-based mechanics, where players can group up to four allied units together into a single panel: while squadmates attack with a damage penalty, the squad leader can deal damage normally onto a single enemy unit or use an "ALL Attack" to strike all enemies in a squad, without their squadmates' assistance. The game also confirms the canon heroes of the Alpha saga from the eight character templates in the first game are Kusuha Mizuha and Brooklyn Luckfield. Similar squad systems would be reintegrated into installments post-Alpha saga in the form of the "Twin Battle System" in Original Generation and the "TRI-Battle System" of Super Robot Wars Z.

Unfortunately, none of the Alpha Gaiden debuts return for Alpha 2 and beyond (mainly because Gundam X, Turn A Gundam and Xabungle were set in an alternate timeline in this saga), while Victory Gundam, Braiger, and the Masou Kishin cast vanishes with them. Raideen, Dancougar and Macross are conspicuously absent as well, but they return for the Alpha 3 finale.

Series Introduced In Alpha 3 (Bold indicates debuting series)

Launched in August 2005 on the PlayStation 2 as the saga's Grand Finale, Alpha 3 (which comes with the heading "終焉の銀河へ"note ) boasted a record-setting 33 individual series for its roster, one of which was another company's video game series (Virtual ON), a first for the franchise. Only Brain Powerd and Crossbone Gundam are removed for Alpha 3, but many titles that appeared in Alpha and Alpha Gaiden, but skipped Alpha 2, make their reappearance.

Tropes associated with the Alpha series:

  • Adaptation Amalgamation: The Macross plot in Alpha is a combination of the TV series and the movie:
    • Character designs take after the movie, excluding Kamjin due to him getting hit hard with Demoted to Extra in said movie.
    • The plot begins just like in the TV series, with many episodes that weren't adapted in the movie being adapted here. However, movie-exclusive plot points – such as Zentradi and Meltrandi being at war with each other, and the existence of the titular "Do you Remember Love" song – are introduced halfway through. This leads to a finale based entirely on the movie, save for Kamjin's presence.
    • The kidnapping incident serves as a combination of the events of both versions of the story, and marks the point where the plot switched from following the series to following the movie. In the series, Hikaru, Misa, Max and Kakizaki are taken prisioner. In the movie, it's Hikaru, Misa, Focker, Minmay and Kaifun. In Alpha, it's all of them.
    • The relationship between Hikaru and Minmay changes depending on a route split. In one of the routes, they meet before entering the Macross and quickly become friends, like in the TV series. In the other route, they don't meet until Minmay is already a famous idol and Hikaru is her fan, like in the movie.
    • Depending on the actions of the player in certain scenarios, the romance between Max and Milia will either end in Milia getting miclonized to pilot a Valkyrie like in the series, or in Max getting macronized to pilot a Queadluun-Rau like in the movie.
  • Aesop Amnesia: Humanity as a whole ends up having to learn the same lesson thrice. In the first Alpha, a significant part of the plot was the heroes convincing the other factions that humans shouldn't be fighting against each other when the planet is in danger due to several threats from outer space. Come Alpha 2, they have to do it all over again. And then one more time in Alpha 3. Needless to say, the heroes are NOT happy about humanity's failure to learn from previous mistakes.
  • After the End: In Alpha Gaiden, after Scenario 9, no less than three of them have occurred.
  • Anachronism Stew:
    • The UC Gundam plot of the first game is a combination of 0083, Zeta, ZZ, F91 and Victory. In canon, the time gap between the earliest of those titles (0083) and the latest (Victory) is 70 years. Not to mention the presence of many characters from the original series that were long dead by the time of these events. Alpha 2 continues using this trope by combining the plots of Char's Counterattack and Crossbone, and having them take place two years after the events of Alpha. CCA and Crossbone originally happened 60 and 20 years before Victory respectively and thus have a 40 years gap between them.
    • Also happens to Macross. In the canon of the franchise, Macross Plus takes place 30 years after the original series. In the Alpha series, characters from Plus are present for the events of the original series in the first game. Parts of the events of the OVA are then adapted in Alpha Gaiden (six months after the first game that adapted the plot of the original) and Alpha 3 (two years after that). Averted in regards to Macross 7, as its presence in Alpha 3 relies on time travel.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Primarily with Alpha 3
    • Following the cumbersome system behind the "Ideon Gauge" and how it can trigger a Non Standard Game Over when the titular unit turns into The Berserker in the Super Robot Wars F duology, Alpha 3 removes the instant game over conditions.
    • In order to use the SRX ("Super Robot Type-X") in Alpha, players need to deploy all three R-Units into battle, place them adjacent to one another, then combine them on the field, which will cost the sortie roster two valuable unit slots. The succeeding SRX "Banpreios" in Alpha 3 averts this by being a combined unit from the very start.
    • Due to how the Alpha 2 squad system must be done manually, Alpha 3 overhauled it by allowing automatic squad generation. Simultaneously, plenty of quality-of-life options were added to the squad system, including access to equippable parts, unit upgrade and pilot upgrade menus from the squad-setup menu, giving players the option to manually change each squad members' actions when targeted by an enemy ALL Attack and showing squadmates attack before the squad leader during animations; none of these were available in Alpha 2.
  • Apocalypse How: So many on so many levels. In Alpha 3, there's no less than three "X-2" situations; in fact, achieving the bad ending of Alpha 3 results in an "X-4" event.
  • Art Evolution:
    • In the first game of the series, Shin Getter and Mazinkaiser were based on their manga and Super Robot Wars F designs, respectively. By The 2nd Super Robot Wars Alpha, the designs for both mechs shifted to the designs from their two OVA series.
    • Alpha 2 also saw a massive upgrade in animation quality for the battles, even giving some units special Dynamic Kill animations if they managed to finish off an enemy unit.
  • Back for the Finale: Many of the series removed for Alpha Gaiden and Alpha 2 (such as Evangelion, Raideen and Gunbuster) return in Alpha 3. Averted however with the Alpha Gaiden debuts, Dubine, Masou Kishin,Victory Gundam, Giant Robo, the original Gundam and War in the Pocket.
  • Badass Army: Londo Bell, later renamed the "Alpha Numbers" beginning with Alpha 2 by Kincaid Nau.
  • Behind the Black:
  • " This explanation is used in regards to the sudden appearance of Gundam SEED in Alpha 3; it essentially amounts to "Oh, Coordinators and the PLANTs have always been there: they just didn't get involved in any of the stuff that happened in the last three wars."
    • The second half of the Raideen plot happens offscreen in-between Alpha Gaiden and Alpha 3, explaining the absence of Akira Hibiki in Alpha 2.
  • Big Bad
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Due to the nature of the series, a number of villainous factions are clearly trying to bite off way more than they can chew. They end up as quickly disposed-of fodder or puppets for the more capable villains. The best example is probably the Mariemaia Army in Alpha Gaiden, which gets crushed in the span of three scenarios, two of which are not mandatory.
  • Bitter Sweet Ending
    • Alpha ends with the Aerogaters defeated. Unfortunately for the SRX Team, they are detained by the Federation and placed under house arrest for "having military secrets", as a result of Ingram Plisken being The Mole for the Aerogaters. Likewise, Viletta Vadim and Mai Kobayashi are arrested for having collaborated with them. Since Viletta reappears in Alpha 2, it's implied the government has cleared her of charges; similarly, the rest of the team returns for Alpha 3, indicating they are free to return to duty.
    • In Alpha 2, the Earth is unsealed, but the Alpha Numbers cannot rescue Irui Gan Eden in the routes for Sanger Zonvolt and Ibis Douglas. However, this is Retconned in Alpha 3 thanks to She's Just Hiding.
  • Boss Rush
  • Boring, but Practical: Gundam Sandrock and Gundam Deathscythe in Alpha Gaiden have only vulcan guns and their basic melee attack, so their fights tend to be repetitive. However, these "melee" attacks have good weapon range, all-around good terrain rating, decent damage for non-beam type weaponry and require neither ammunition nor energy, making them solid choices for most of the game.
    • Bonus points in that they gain lots of attack power with upgrades. In general, any weapons with a range of 4 and post-movement with an attack power of 2500 or higher are considered this trope in Alpha Gaiden.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Of course, there are the usual suspects from various series, plus some extras - for example, Katejina Loos is now this, while in the original she was simply crazy.
  • Break the Cutie: Happens to plenty of people in the licensed properties - the Evangelion pilots and the crew of the Solo Ship perhaps being the standouts. A lot of the originals don't catch a break, either.
    • There are several times Kusuha Mizhua believes Bullet has been Killed Off for Real, and that's never a happy time for her (the worst is later on in the series when she mistakenly believes she hears his mental death-scream, ala Tiffa Adill; that one nearly breaks her)
    • Half of Ibis' story (and, in a sense, her appeal) is nothing but taking a brick to her, over and over. She eventually recovers, but it's a long road.
  • Breakout Character: Sanger from Alpha Gaiden. If side materials are anything to go by, Tetsuya Tsurugi, who is a pretty good example in Alpha himself, going from normal, but not really important enough of a character in the first game, into one of the more developed figures to the plot and back-story of Alpha Gaiden. He winds up becoming the primary mentor to Touma in Alpha 3, since Tetsuya gives him his training schedule to fit his role as Drill Sergeant Nasty of the Alpha Numbers.
    • Kusuha is a selectable protagonist from the start, whereas Sanger's character and Alpha Gaiden wasn't in the original plan for the series, but she proved popular as an option in Alpha that Banpresto more or less felt compelled to make her the consistent choice in the sequels. As a result, she has more merchandise focused around her than any other original or even the entire casts of some of the shows she shares games with.
  • Calling Your Attacks
  • Canon Immigrant: Ratsel Feinschmecker is clearly a Paper-Thin Disguise for Elzam von Branstein, who made his debut in Super Robot Wars: Original Generation before his appearance in Alpha 2. Alpha 3 brings Ratsel's mecha from Original Generation 2 into the former.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Quite a few series vanish without explanation and never return. Sometimes there's an excuse (Most of the Alpha Gaiden characters only exist in an alternate future, while the Dunbine and Masou Kishin casts return to Byston Well and La Gias, respectively, and just don't come back), but not always (Victory Gundam, Braiger, Crossbone Gundam and Brain Powerd characters disappear without comment). Most notable is Giant Robo, who is set up to have a major role in later games but is written out and never mentioned again (Banpresto didn't have a choice, as the holder of the rights to Giant Robo changed after Alpha, and it became too expensive to reacquire the license for sequels). As a result, Big Fire, a major villainous faction in Alpha, inexplicably goes away.
  • Cloning Blues: Euzeth's plan to conquer the Earth in Alpha.
    • This sums up a chunk of the route for Cobray Gordon in Alpha 3, specifically, Calico McCready, who serves as The Rival for Cobray and hates him for being chosen by the "Originator" (Ingram) to succeed him. Cobray's biggest stigma is he thinks he can't escape Ingram's shadow.
  • Crapsack World: The split timeline in Alpha Gaiden - the fallout from the events of Alpha and attacks by underground forces nearly destroyed humanity and most of the Earth is reduced to a scorched wasteland. After humanity partially recovers, another war breaks out between the Earth and the colonies, annihilating most of it again. In the primary timeline, the Solar System is torn by a number of successive wars, between Colony Drops and various genocidal invaders successfully striking at major population centers across the globe. Some of the aliens opposing the Earth have suffered their own catastrophes, such as the loss of their homeworlds. At least the Alpha Numbers manage to fix most of the problems by Alpha 3, including some of the invaders.
  • Crutch Character: The Mazingers in Alpha Gaiden. The way they play with this trope is complicated.
    • The Masou Kishin cast from the same game. Early on, Mooks are weak enough to be devastated by their MAP Attacks, particularly the Cybuster and Valsione, who have post-movement MAP Attacks, essentially making them some of the better characters. By late game, due to the low rate of upgrades for MAP Attacks and the expensive cost of upgrading weapons, coupled with a low supply of EN and a weak weapon set, these characters are less valuable in the final scenarios in contrast to their capabilities at the start.
  • Cultural Cross-Reference: In an Alpha Gaiden Yonkoma, Presia Zenozakis wants to see what Harry Ord really looks like and snatches his Cool which point he starts uncontrollably spraying the room with optic blasts while shouting "Give them back!"
  • Cutscene Boss: Neo Neros is defeated by Kenta Sanada in a cutscene during the GoShogun finale in Alpha 2. In terms of gameplay, the final "boss", or rather the final obstacle to completing the scenario is a bunch of missiles that need to be destroyed.
  • Death by Adaptation:
    • Unlike their original series, the Frost Brothers die in their final confrontation, as opposed to Shagia ending up being contained on wheelchair for life and Olba having to take care of him as the world rebuilds.
    • In the same game, Guin and Merrybell also die after one final battle with the heroes, when they survived in their home series.
    • Miwa's initial fate in Alpha 2 is merely getting arrested, like in the show. However, he returns in Alpha 3, only to be killed by the first shot of Genesis.
    • After surviving the events of his home series and the previous three games, Yazan finally bites it in Alpha 3.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Kamille nearly crosses it in Alpha 3 after seeing how much control over the Federation Blue Cosmos has, as well as how far their genocidal hatred goes. He comments that seeing humankind repeat the same mistakes even after the Axis Shock makes him understand what Char was thinking back then. Thankfully, he recovers from it.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Emperor Gore and Queen Himika near the halfway point of Alpha 2. Even after their defeat, the Yamatai Kingdom and Dinosaur Empire continue on, absorbed by the Mycenae Empire. Himika's followers also prioritize Avenging the Villain, and in Sanger's route intend to use "Machine Cells" to restore their kingdom.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: The Angels and Mass Production Type Evangelions, Euzeth's Black Judecca, Magus' Aurgelmir, Shu's Neo Granzon, Gym Ghingham's Turn X Gundam, The Emperor of Darkness, Don Zauser, Emperor Darius, Baron Maximillian's Hyper Baronz, Irui Gan Eden, The Z-Master, The 11 Lords of Sol, Emperor Ryuuma, Emperor Muge Zorbados, Geppernitch, Evangelion Unit 01 fused with the Tree of Life (effectively GOD), Ruach Gan Eden and Keiser Ephes
    • Honorary mention goes to Alberto the Shockwave, who, though he could not defeat Cthulhu (well, the Angel Sachiel, to be exact), battled him to a standstill while on foot.
  • Divided for Adaptation: The GaoGaiGar story is split between Alpha 2 and Alpha 3
  • Dynamic Difficulty: The Alpha series introduces the "Skill Point" System, acquired by achieving optional objectives in scenarios. Obtaining these Skill Points decides whether the next scenario will net players the easy, normal or hard version of the stage, as well as certain secrets. Beginning with Alpha Gaiden, getting enough Skill Points also influences which ending route will be taken. Although earlier games do not tell players what the Skill Point objectives are, Alpha 2 listed the optional objectives alongside the primary objectives.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Star GaoGaiGar in Alpha 2. Since the GaoGaiGar storyline only went up to dealing with the first half of the series, the Star upgrade was relegated to a hidden unit.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • For all of the aesthetic improvements and the change to isometric maps, the first Alpha is very similar to the Super Robot Wars F duology mechanics-wise with all of the quirks that would imply: individually-upgraded weapons alongside Super Robot Wars 64-esque weapon upgrade bonuses (such as Funnels and Breast Fire gaining MAP versions once fully upgraded), natural double-movement, and "reaction" and "limit" stats.
    • The first Alpha game has a very peculiar Skill Point system. Skill point objectives do not appear in the menu, some points were tied to dialogue choices (such as one for skipping the tutorial in the first scenario), certain stages had multiple objectives available while others had none, some objectives were worth multiple points, and it was possible to lose Skill Points, as laid out in this chart. Careful reading also shows that skill points aren't balanced across route splits, which means that pursuing certain storylines or secrets can make it harder to meet skill point requirements for later bonuses. Furthermore, there was no notification for gaining or losing Skill Points; players had to check the protagonist's status screen manually every time. Modern games using the Skill Point system or variant of it have one and only one point per stage and clearly indicate how many points players have achieved once the menu is pulled up.
    • Alpha and Alpha Gaiden had a strange mechanic where players could separate certain units into their escape craft/components. Thus it was possible to fly around as Core Fighters, Pilders, Getter Machines and other smaller craft.
    • The first Alpha also has a mechanic exclusive to it where, when countering an attack, players can elect to reduce the effectiveness of their counterattack in exchange for enhanced defense.
    • Super Robot Wars Alpha for Dreamcast had a number of combination attacks that wouldn't be seen elsewhere, including Nu Gundam and Sazabi, Zeta, Double Zeta and the GP-03 and the Getter Machines.
  • Elsewhere Fic: Alpha Gaiden features these after a fashion, with two separate manga side-stories detailing what happened to those left behind when the Alpha Numbers get sent to the Bad Future. One centers on Relena Peacecraft and characters from series that were in Alpha Gaiden, while another focuses on Shinji Ikari, Asuka Langley Soryu and others from Alpha who didn't return for the sequels or sat out a few games.
  • Evil Costume Switch: Bullet in Alpha 2
  • Face–Heel Turn: Shu in Alpha Gaiden, Char in Alpha 2
  • Failed a Spot Check: In Alpha 3, the Alpha Numbers are gobsmacked when they suddenly learn the existence of the PLANT despite all sorts of colonies flying around in space. This is Hand Waved as Blue Cosmos doing its damnedest to make Coordinators an Un-person.
  • Fix Fic: Amongst other things, the Alpha series fixes the many tragedies of the various Universal Century Gundam series and averts the Everybody Dies Endings of Ideon and The End of Evangelion. However, the Ideon "Be Invoked" can still be triggered by accessing the bad ending route in Alpha 3.
  • Fragile Speedster: Most real robots, but particularly the "Variable Fighters" of Macross, who will likely die in one, at most two hits, but have enormous mobility stats.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: The STMC. While they aren't the biggest threat you face in-game, it was the threat they posed which drove the First Civilization to build the Guneden systems to protect against them, thus leading to the birth of Kaiser Ephes.
  • Hannibal Lecture: What many of the major villains of the Real Robot series will do when they are confronted. It never works.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Too many to list, but the one that stands out is possibly the Ide, which give up its quest to wipe out all life from the galaxy and even sends the Alpha Numbers back to Earth.
    • Heel–Face Door-Slam: Kukuru unfortunately gets killed off just on the verge of making one in Alpha 2, but the biggest one in these games comes at the tail end of Alpha if players choose to make peace with Kycillia Zabi. Although she can't do much to help take the edge off of the remaining conflicts, she does at least pledge to do what she can and her Zeon faction will keep from causing trouble. Shortly thereafter though, Angel Halo activates and, in a show of power, leaves the entire population of Side 3 braindead.
  • Heroic BSoD: Happens a fair bit, both to the licensed characters and to some of the originals. Of course, all of the enthusiasm on the team tends to help people recover.
    • Shinji, the Master Of BSODs himself, is a major cast member for Alpha and Alpha 3, and is kind of the poster child for an SRW setting making this better.
    • Kusuha runs close to this a few times in the series, when she has good reason to think Bullet has been flat-out killed. She doesn't completely shut down, but she's very badly affected; it's more "Heroically Spitting Stack Errors" than a full BSOD.
    • Seolla Schweizer in Alpha 2 is badly affected by Arado Balanga and his Heel–Face Turn to the Alpha Numbers, wavering between this and murderous rage for him even daring to betray the Titans. He eventually brings her around with the help of some of the Gundam cast, however.
    • Sanger, of all people, can suffer from this if one of the "middle" endings in Alpha 2 is taken, where it isn't clear that Irui survived.
  • Insane Troll Logic: Char's rationalization for dropping Axis onto Earth was pretty insane in the source material, but in Alpha 2, the plan is repeated with practically no changes in a world where humanity is simultaneously hammered by joint invasion forces of three alien worlds, the Mycenae Empire (which, in fact, immediately takes advantage of the havoc caused by Char) and a number of other extinction-level threats. This is left for players to wonder how destroying most of human civilization is going to help them survive, considering these circumstances.
  • Isometric Projection: Alpha is the first SRW to use isometric-view maps (as opposed to top-down view of the earlier (and some modern handheld) games), complete with full-body, full-color super-deformed map sprites instead of color-coded head-only map icons. It has been used in the following Alpha sequels and in most modern SRW titles.
  • Jump Scare: Not something you'd expect from a turn-based strategy game, but this is present in Alpha 3. The strongest attack of Keisar Ephes, "End of the Galaxy", has an extremely long animation that involves hordes of wraiths, visions of planets blowing up, Earth being chopped in half, and Keisar Ephes standing atop the destroyed machines of the entire Alpha Numbers. And just when you think it's over, the dynamic kill animation shows the unfortunate victim of the attack being consumed by hundreds of wraiths.
  • Lethal Joke Item: Alpha has the equippable part "Tem Ray's Circuit", which drastically reduces unit stats, but if the mecha is destroyed, it will cost only 10 credits to repair (in other words, the part turns it into another Boss Borot). For a real menace, put it on something like the Evangelion Unit 01 along with another part to lessen the penalty, then send Shinji on a suicide attack. Paying only 10 credits instead of its usual repair cost of 40000 makes using the "Berserk Unit 01" sound like a practical strategy, not to mention the Berserk Evangelion is considered an enemy unit, thus destroying it nets a neat bundle of credits as well.
  • Loading Screen: There's a short one right after the preparations menu and before the next chapter. What makes it notable in the first game is that while you get pictures of various notable mecha, in rare occasions, you get one of berserk EVA Unit-01, and it howls at you. And it's the only one.
  • Massive Multiplayer Crossover
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Thanks for stopping the STMC in Alpha, only now the shockwave from the blast used to kill them is headed towards Earth and will destroy the planet in Alpha Gaiden. To be fair, that is the lesser of two evils, considering the STMC practically wins anything through sheer attrition.
    • From Bad to Worse: Turns out the STMC fought in Alpha were only a small fraction of them. Their main force arrives in Alpha 3.
  • Nintendo Hard: Alpha Gaiden, which itself is easy in comparison to getting Tiffa and the G-Bits in the game. Scenario 15 alone frustrates players to no degree because of how many times they're going to reset the game in order to get those six kills in three turns with Garrod Ran; the substantial power boost they give to the Double X makes them worth the effort.
  • Non-Entity General: Only mentioned during the final bonus scenario in Alpha 3 and most likely a joke. When someone mentions the "player" and confuses Cobray, Ryusei Date explains it's the strategist who keeps watching them from "that monitor".
  • Older and Wiser: The cast of the previous games in the sequels, notably the SRX Team, Getter Team, Evangelion pilots and various Gundam protagonists. A small portion of them have also become Shell Shocked Veterans, but this being Super Robot Wars, they get over it.
    • Tetsuya is a REALLY good example of the latter, as a result of Alpha Gaiden.
  • Once per Episode: The GP-02A Physalis getting hijacked and needing to be taken back; this stops with Alpha 3.
  • Original Generation: Aside from the game-specific originals, characters from Masou Kishin: The Lord of Elemental, Shin Super Robot Wars, Super Hero Sakusen, Super Robot Spirits and Super Robot Wars 4 reappear for the Alpha series.
    • The Alpha series is notable in SRW for being the first to really have a substantial "mythology" of its originals, separate from all of the crossover series, and sufficiently developed to the point they felt like their own thing intellectual property. Alpha was likely the catalyst for the Original Generation series as it came to be.
  • Pet the Dog: In Alpha 3, after defeating the copy of the Unit 01 in the final scenario of The End of Evangelion plot, Gendo Ikari tells his son he actually wanted to comfort him, but never had courage to open up. Before he dies, he finally tells Shinji he's glad to see his son grow into such a strong man.
  • The Power of Rock: Naturally, Macross 7 in Alpha 3, but also Mic Sounders the 13th in the same game.
    • JAM Project; Alpha 3 notches this up to eleven by having the theme song of the game, "Gong", depower the Final Boss, led by Basara Nekki and a recording of Lynn Minmay.
  • The Prophecy: In Alpha 2, the Bronze Bell foretells of a malevolent force that will unify the subterranean forces of the Dinosaur Empire, Yamatai Kingdom, and Mycenae Empire. The Emperor of Darkness appears to fit the bill and goes on to be one of the final bosses in the game until Alpha 3 reveals everyone jumped to conclusions and the prophecy actually spoke of Emperor Ryuuma, instead.
  • Purposely Overpowered:
    • Certain late-game mecha, notably the SRX in Alpha: three sets of Spirit Commands (later four, with the addition of Mai), a powerful set of weapons, even by Super Robot standards, and a Combination Attack accessible in the final scenario that can potentially One-Hit Kill the Final Boss.
    • Mazinkaiser in Alpha Gaiden is far more powerful than the rest of the team, including the Shin Getter Robo, thanks to high Hit Points, EN, good mobility (comparable to some Gundams) and armor rating, alongside a great set of weapons, augumented with the "Mazinpower" unit abilitynote  and can use its attacks right off the batnote . Of course, this being Alpha Gaiden, it's actually a godsend rather than it ruining the game.
    • Sanger and the Thrudgelmir from the same game: good attacks rivaling those of the Mazingers, comparable stats to the Mazinkaiser, and a set of abilities that make it almost invulnerable. Note that it's only playable in the last two scenarios of the game, and despite its setup, the Thrudgelmir cannot win the scenarios alone.
  • Put on a Bus: Alpha is the last time Banpresto (and later B.B Studio) put on Giant Robo in its series thanks to the difficulty to keep its license after the death of its original creator.
  • Recurring Boss: Players will be continually plagued by the forces of the Dinosaur and Mycenae Empires until they're blown up for good in Alpha 2. Resident Psycho for Hire Yazan Gable holds the distinction of being the only enemy to show up in all four games and still live until he's finally Killed Off for Real in Alpha 3.
    • Dr. Hell is another: he reappears in Alpha 2 and Alpha 3 as the Grand Marshall Of Hell.
    • Shapiro Keats, who always survives that.
    • While they aren't quite as strong as true boss units, even in their final mecha, players must fight Jerid Messa, Timp and Kid Hola repeatedly, reflecting their status as persistent nemeses in their original anime storylines.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Since Crossbone Gundam did not have an animated adaptation to pull BGM from, Alpha 2 utilizes a rearranged version of the Crossbone Vanguard battle theme from SD Gundam G Generation as the series' Leitmotif.
  • Road Cone: Between Alpha 2 and Alpha 3, parts of the story change between the various protagonists. What's more, each protagonist in Alpha 3 is linked to a protagonist in Alpha 2 (except Kusuha, due to her link being Shaped Like Itself). In other words, Selena Recital is linked to Ibis, Touma to Sanger and Cobray to Arado.
  • Robeast: Mechanical Beasts, Warrior Beasts, Fossil Beasts, Slave Beasts, Beast Fighters, Mecha Soldiers, Haniwa Phantom Gods, Mechasauruses, Zonders and the Angels.
  • Saved for the Sequel: Compared to the Super Robot Wars Z series, the Alpha games often didn't tie up every loose plot thread at the end of the earlier installments, to help serve as a Sequel Hook. For instance, Alpha only covers the first half of Combattler V with its second season being saved for Alpha 3.
  • Secret Character
  • Sequel Escalation
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Uncountable, but the best one has got to be the final scenario to The End of Evangelion story, where Shinji not only rejects the intended Assimilation Plot, but also Gendo, asserting he's his own person. In fact, the entire scenario is a MASSIVE invoking of this trope, seeing as how the Alpha Numbers are so Hot-Blooded, it prevents them from turning into LCL.
  • So Last Season: Some mechs, especially from Gundam, do get outclassed as the games go on thanks to getting units from further down their timelines. Openly invoked in Alpha Gaiden where Kou's team sees the Borjarnon (a Zaku I) and note that even by the point in UC history they were from it was a hilariously outdated suit.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Not as much as it might seem at first sight, due to a number of characters surviving exclusively as secrets, which aren't treated as canon in the sequels. For example, Musashi does not survive in Alpha 2, even though he can be saved on certain routes.
    • Possibly due to the One Year War getting interrupted, a lot of the Zeon aces from Mobile Suit Gundam, War In The Pocket and Stardust Memory appear in Neo Zeon's forces. However, as the Haman Route in Alpha 2 is rendered Canon Discontinuity in Alpha 3, they are all Killed Off for Real.
    • Physica from Macross 7 is spared from his fate in the show. Because of this, when Docker recovers, he simply rejoins the Diamond Force rather than forming the new Emerald Force.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: In Alpha Gaiden, most of the spotlight goes to Tetsuya, who is useable for most of the game, the first character playable post-Time Skip, has plenty of voiced dialogue rivaling Heero Yuy and has a lot of scenarios that places him center stage. By the end of the game, he is basically the most developed character in the entire cast.
  • Stationary Boss: Shu, as usual; however, the first time players fight him in Alpha Gaiden, he will move if unprovoked for a while.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: Both Monsha and Sochie think the Wadom looks like a scarecrow.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: Scenario 36 of Alpha Gaiden is noted by players to be one of the best points in the game. The Mazinkaiser, Shin Getter Robo, R-1 Custom, Gundam X and Gundam Double X (alongside the G-Bits, if the requirements are met), the "HPHGCP" part and two free units that give tons of "Blue Stones" for the Bazaar are acquired. The game's difficulty starts to go wild from that point on.
  • The Starscream: Euzeth in Alpha; Shiva Gozzo also pulls this off in Alpha 3, although the one he usurped was only a mask for the real Big Bad in the first place.
  • Theme Naming: Obviously, the "Space Jews" of the Ze Balmary Empire. A much more subtle one is the naming scheme of Ingram and his clones. Their real names correspond to their numbers and the respective letter in the Hebrew alphabet. Ingram, the first clone, is "Aleph"; Villeta, the second, is "Bet" Vadim; Cobray, the sixteenth, is "Ayin".
  • The World Is Always Doomed: Goes into overdrive in Alpha 3 with the concept of "Apocalypsis", a galaxy-wide force of destruction exploited by Keisar Ephes.
  • True Final Boss: Shu in Alpha Gaiden
  • Unwitting Pawn: Exalted Ruler Olban is manipulated by Emperor Zu Zambojil and the Dark Horror Army. Mind you, the latter two intend to use his race as shock troops to weaken the Earth's defenders, then enslave or exterminate them. Meanwhile, the Yamatai Kingdom end up as pawns themselves to the Mycenae Empire.
  • Villain Shoes: Arado begins his story as a Titans soldier. Selena Recital takes an opportunity to jump ship to ZAFT and assists them for several chapters early on.
  • Villain Team-Up
  • Villainous Valor: A few examples; besides the obvious suspects among Noble Demon opponents and redeemable villains, a number of stalwartly evil characters, including the Great General of Darkness, General Bat and Queen Himika deliberately sacrifice themselves to ensure a victory for their side.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: At least one in every game
    • Alpha has the Dragonsaurus from the crossover movie between Getter Robo G, Great Mazinger, and Grendizer, fought in Scenario 12 of the South Ataria Route. 28000 HP with large "HP Regeneration"note , hits like a truck and can be exceptionally difficult to damage due to it being underwater.
    • Alpha Gaiden has Shu and the Granzon/Neo Granzon early in the game, but it's Gym in the Turn X that fits this trope better, as he sets the trend where late-game bosses will spam recuperating Spirit Commands repeatedly and destroying them will be multi-turn affairs.
    • Alpha 2 has the Death Gale unit. Without proper planning, attacks from them can be devastating since the accuracy from Giri Gadeucca Aspis's Quavarze is increased due to Rosemary Raspberry providing a supporting squad-attack with the Abijo (which will also eat up any "Support Defend"note  players hope to use). Barnes Gernsback with the Tortuga has high HP, armor rating, strong counterattacks, and multiple ranks in "Support Defend", meaning he can intercept any attack players attempt to send at Gigi or Rosemary's way first.
    • Alpha 3 has Ephesus Judecca Gozzo and Ace Gozzo in their Hermodr and Dvariym, respectively, in Scenario 14. The Dvariym has several MAP Attacks (all post-movement) at its disposal and while it's hardly difficult to destroy, the problem is Ace's Will skyrocketing too high and letting him take action during the enemy turn. The Hermodr has a MAP Attack of its own with a long, wide firing range that limits the number of units that can attack it safely, along with "HP Regeneration" to take the edge off the damage players do inflict to it. Worth mentioning is the Hermodr is a battleship, and players will be seeing more of these down the line when fighting groups of Balmar enemies.
  • Wham Episode: In Alpha Gaiden, this comes around post-scenarios 9 and 10, where up until this point, the game seemed to be about a conflict with the Titans until Shu appears, announces they are in an alternate timeline and the only way to solve it is by using millions as a sacrifice. When he's defeated, he teleports Londo Bell to a Bad Future where the Earth is a barren wasteland.
  • What If?: The Alpha series basically poses this versus the "Classic Timeline", in regards to Divine Crusaders' leader Bian Zoldark being listened to instead of being ignored.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: In Alpha 3, when Kira goes into a breakdown and chews out his friend Sai, Kamille, Quatre and Shinji all show up to tell Kira off.
  • What the Hell, Player?: When fighting Shu for the first time in Alpha Gaiden, he will accuse the player of cowardice if five turns pass before attacking him. In Alpha 2, rejecting Haman's offer for an alliance also leads to one, since Londo Bell's actions in the original game were what convinced her there was a better way than the rat race.
  • Writing Around Trademarks: A side effect of some titles disappearing between games in spite of their importance to the plot. There are many instances where the cast is blatantly talking about the missing titles, but being unusually vague to avoid legal issues:
    • The shockwave created by the destruction of the Excelion at the end of Alpha is one of the main plot points of Alpha Gaiden, but since Gunbuster isn't in that game, the characters can't mention what caused the shockwave. Thankfully, the writing team found a loophole: as a form of Arc Welding, the first game established that the Excelion is based on the Macross, and is officially labelled as a SDF-class ship. And since Macross is in Alpha Gaiden, they simply have the cast refer to the ship that caused the shockwave as "the SDF" without mentioning its proper name.
    • Macross itself gets hit with this in Alpha 2. Despite it being absent, when a character is discussing aliens, he mentions giants. In another moment, the cast is discussing the purpose and size of the Daiku-Maryu, with one character commenting that the "city-sized ship" is currently deep in space.
    • Alpha 2 also had a brief mention of a giant Psycommu device that fell to the ocean. Since Mobile Suit Victory Gundam isn't in the game, they can't just call it "Angel Halo".
    • In Alpha 3, the ones who took care of Arado and Irui after the Alpha 2 ending were Kincade and Berah, or rather, Seabook and Cecily, but since Crossbone Gundam is not in the game, the writing team have Arado state that he's not supposed to tell Seolla that, he can only say that they "used to be pirates" and "allowed him to have good bread everyday".
    • Brain Powerd doesn't return for Alpha 3, but even so, when Ruach is explaining the history of the First Founding People, he claims that one of the relics they left behind on Earth is the undersea ruins of a failed space ark, obviously talking about Orphan.

We'll go into the space over our future.
We're looking for the place under the shining star.
We'll try to sing a song for our new world.