Another Century's Episode: R
|Another Century's Episode: R|
Official cover art
|Publisher(s)||Bandai Namco Games|
Another Century's Episode: R (アナザーセンチュリーズエピソード アール? Anazā Senchurīzu Episōdo R), abbreviated as A.C.E.: R, is a mecha action video game developed by FromSoftware and Banpresto and published by Bandai Namco Games. The game was released for the PlayStation 3 in Japan on August 19, 2010.
A new dynamic shooting mode called Chase Mode has been added to the game. This mode is similar to arcade shooters wherein the player's machine moves on rails and leaves the targeting weapons for the player to control. Each chase mode section precedes a boss battle; the examples released so far include the battle against the Behemoth from Full Metal Panic! and the battle against Nora Polyansky from Macross Zero. A new ability called Burst Attack appears in this installment. Burst attack is available to all units, and is a special charge attack that changes depending on what machine is being used.
This is the first title in the A.C.E. series that allows to swap pilots between machines (excluding the Shin Getter team in Another Century's Episode 3: The Final), though only for Universal Century mecha (those from Zeta Gundam, Crossbone Gundam and Genesis of Aquarion), in which pilot changing is a major plot point and constantly used.
Rather than integrating different series into one or two unified universes like previous titles of the series, A.C.E.: R presents each featured series as independent timelines, with the series' main characters proceeding with their own stories before the events of the game.
The main events of the game itself revolve around an original timeline again completely independent of all other featured series. In this timeline humanity has expanded beyond the Solar system, with planet Area becoming one of those resulting colonies. But somewhere along the line the Seasons, androids originally built to help the colonists settling on Area, rebelled against their human companions. Leading a robotic army collectively known as the Icon, the Seasons successfully wiped out the humans on planet Area, but there is one last trick up the colonists' sleeves: they made a data copy out of one of the Seasons androids and entrusted it, named Autumn-4, with genetic seeds of themselves as well as a trans-atmospheric battleship Ark Alpha. The intention was for Autumn-4 to take the gene seeds as far away from the Seasons' grip as possible so that the now-deceased colonists can be reborn on a safe world. Soon after commencement of Autumn-4's mission, however, Ark Alpha was intercepted by a fleet of Icon warships led by Winter-1, head of the Seasons. Overwhelmed by the numerically-superior enemies and in desperation, Autumn-4 activated a device within Ark Alpha called V-Drive, which has the ability to create a blackhole-like portal to parallel universes: it worked, with Brunhilde emerging from the portal and repulsing the Icon fleet, but also unintentionally caused characters from other timelines to be transported to planet Area as well. To make the matter worse, the energy discharged by Brunhilde in the process affected Autumn-4's memory circuits and corrupted her record of the event, leaving her unable to explain to all the people who now find themselves stranded in a foreign universe as to what has transpired.
Nevertheless, feeling responsible for their plight, Autumn-4 decides to find out what happened and how to return them to their home worlds while enlisting their help in finding a way through the robotic army of the Seasons, who would shoot first and never ask questions much later.
With a few exceptions, the background music is instrumental, though the game includes a BGM editor that allows for replacing music during gameplay and cutscenes with music from the PlayStation 3's hard drive. Acid Black Cherry will provide the themes for A.C.E.: R. The opening theme is named "Re:Birth". There are two separate releases planned for this single. The first includes the title song "Re:Birth" and was released on August 18. The second release is planned for October, and includes a game edit version of "Re:Birth" as well as three additional songs that Acid Black Cherry created for Another Century's Episode R.
- Official website (in Japanese)