I know this game had a thread made shortly before it was released, but it's over a month dead and lacks a proper OP (no offense Bamelin). I didn't figure anybody would mind if I made a new one instead of bumping the old one. This is probably doomed to drop off of the thread index inside of a week anyway, but I don't care. I'm still playing the hell out of it and wouldn't mind getting in on some action with fellow PA folk.
What the hell is an Ontario Anagram?
Due to some strange alignment of the planets, we seem to be in a glut of fighting games right now. With SFIV, Blazblue, and KOF98UM out now and MVC2, KOF 12, and Tekken 6 on the way, seems like there's no shortage of 1-on-1 action to be had at the moment. But the best game came out a few months ago and seemed to slip by everyone somehow. Dordray would [vidurl=
any of those other guys beneath his feet. And then he would [vidurl=
on their graves[/vidurl].
Cyber Troopers Virtual On: Oratorio Tangram Mind Shift Battle System Version Five Point Sixty-Six (or, for your sanity and mine, simply "VOOT") is, more or less, a 3D fighter for the Dreamcast and Xbox 360. Only instead of martial artists, you use giant fucking robots, and instead of hadoukens, you shoot giant laser beams. The main things that differentiate it from other fighters are constant full-3D movement (you're not always locked into a line of sight with your opponent) and terrain obstructions that can be used for cover. It's the second of a series (the first being Operation Moongate on Saturn, the latest being MARZ on PS2) and is generally regarded as the best for a variety of reasons I don't care to get into in this post.
The XBLA demo allows you to play the first 5 stages of Arcade mode as one of 3 VRs (Temjin, Raiden, Fei-Yen). I'm also pretty sure that the demo AI is locked on very easy, as the CPU basically stands around and waits for you to smash its teeth in. The full version features straightforward Arcade and Score Attack modes, versus play over Live, and an extremely easy 200 achievement points.
These in-game tutorials suck. How the hell do I play it?
Each VR has three basic weapons. The right weapon (RW) is usually a simple beam shot, the left weapon (LW) is usually more unique to that particular VR, and the center weapon (CW) is usually something really fucking powerful. If you perform one of the basic attacks in combination with a jump, crouch, dash, or stationary turbo, then its attack properties tend to change significantly. When in close range, most of these attack combinations change to some kind of melee technique. If you need an in-depth rundown on what you can do in this game and some general pointers, I wrote a page for VOOT on the Shoryuken Wiki here
. You can find information on character-specific special moves here
, though this lacks info on the 3 characters that were added in version 5.66.
Probably the biggest problem people have when starting out is keeping the opponent in sight. The best way to do this is typically by jumping into the air (which automatically locks onto the opponent), and then immediately hitting the crouch button to cancel your jump and return to the ground. Yeah, it's awkward, but it's effective, so get used to doing it.
Control schemes always come up as an issue in VO threads, so I might as well mention it: The original arcade game was played on a twin joystick setup with 2 triggers each. The default config on the gamepad is pretty different. Though there is an officially licensed controller
coming out later this year, it's strictly for those with more money than sense ($300, probably $400 after shipping). There is a twinstick style option for the pad, but I think the best control solution for the 360 pad is to just use the default scheme with rotation moved to LB/RB instead of the right stick. Works fine for me. Your mileage may vary.
How's the online?
There's some good and some bad. The good: The netcode itself is absolutely excellent. I've played over 1000 online matches since this game's release, more than 95% of which have been against Japanese players. I could probably count the number of matches where lag was a deciding factor on my hands. No silly shit like host advantage (lookin' at you SNK), and ~200ms ping is playable. No foolin'! It's easy to create private 8-player lobbies through the Xbox Live Party menu, and the recent update patch also added in a spectator mode for private matches, so that's pretty cool.
The bad: The matchmaking system sort of blows. Whenever you challenge somebody in a public lobby (either Ranked or Player), that person has the option to either accept or refuse your challenge. I frequently fail to connect to an opponent, and I suspect (but am not positive) that this is largely due to Japanese players refusing challenges from overseas players (even though I find the experience to be fine). You might have to refresh the lobby list a few times to find somebody able to play, but it usually doesn't take that long and it doesn't seem to be as bad as it was at its initial release.
If you ever played the 360 version of Virtua Fighter 5 (created by the same team), that should give you a good idea of how this game performs over Live, though the interface is a little more fleshed-out in VOOT and I never did play against nearly as many JP folk on VF5. Basically, if the netcode for this game wasn't as good as it is, I wouldn't be bothering to make a thread for it. Since the singleplayer is barebones and the only option for local versus is via system link (LAN), this game is only really worth it for Live play.
The online community itself is small but dedicated. Over 26000 copies have sold to date if the leaderboards are any indication, and there seem to be a few hundred players who play regularly. There are also still dozens of Gamertags out there with only 200 points from people who basically use their 360s as VOOT machines exclusively. Even though you're likely to find somebody to play at any time of the day, the vast majority of the playerbase is Japanese and most active at night (local Japan time). The forums at Oratan.com and Shoryuken.com have a lot of English-speaking players if you want to find some.
- The jack of all trades VR with average size, power, and mobility. A good choice for beginners and pros alike. He's pretty straightforward and probably the most popular VR in the game. He has the most stylish special move in the game, in which he jumps on top of his giant sword and rides it through the air like a surfboard, smashing into his opponent's head. Had a pretty rad [vidurl=
song[/vidurl] in Operation Moongate, too.
- A clunky heavyweight VR with high firepower. He has terrible close combat range, and most of his attacks are slow, but his center weapon (twin lasers) are both fast and phenomenally powerful. Most VRs crumple and die in 2 hits from the lasers, so try setting up a kill with them by flushing out the opponent with ground napalm and laser cages. He can destroy all of his armor and cut his remaining HP by 90% to enter Hyper Mode, which makes him the fastest VR in the game. His old stage from Operation Moongate is back, complete with its [vidurl=
Fei-Yen the Knight
- A pink, lightweight, nimble VR with a girlish and fairy-like build who shoots heart beams from her chest, powers-up into something called "Emotional Mode," and has a bitchslap and butt stomp in her close combat technique list. Yeah. >_> She plays somewhat similarly to Temjin but with greater speed and firing rate in exchange for less offensive/defensive power.
- The aerial combat specialist. He's the most frail of all the VRs (excluding Ajim) but is extremely mobile, particularly so in the air. Cypher is the only VR who can fire two attacks in a single jump in addition to using aerial close combat. He can also transform into a fighter jet and fly straight into the opponent for lots of damage.
- This guy brings the heavy artillery in full-force. His arsenal almost completely consists of mid-to-long range missiles with high explosive firepower, so the name of his game is zoning: use the blast radius of your missile barrages to box the opponent into a corner and/or to shield yourself from any oncoming attacks.
- A Frankenstein
mish-mash of all the other VRs with a build similar to that of Grys-Vok. I'm pretty sure that this guy has no original moves, as every single one that I've seen is a variant of one of the other VR's techniques. The result feels somewhat clunky to control, but it's hard to argue with that quad-laser center weapon. Fucker nails me with that more than I care to admit.
Apharmd the Battler
- The close combat specialist. Most of his weapons blow at long range, but if he can close the gap between him and the opponent, the latter is often in for some serious face-smashing. His CC weapons are stronger, faster, and have greater reach than most others, so try to stun/corner the opponent and then move in for the kill.
Apharmd the Striker
- An Apharmd model with improved long-range weaponry in exchange for average CC ability. He's considered by many to be the worst non-joke VR in the game, but he's still a force to be reckoned with if you can figure out the tricks with regard to the speed/homing ability in his center weapon attacks.
Apharmd the Commander
- This model is based on the original Apharmd from Operation Moongate. He's sort of middle-of-the-road between B and S, I suppose. His center weapon (machete toss) hurts a whole lot, but it's kinda hard to aim.
Bal-Bados / Bal-Baros / Bal-Keros
- The Bal series consists of three different models that are used depending on whether you're fighting on land, water, or air. All three have very similar abilities; most of their differences are merely cosmetic. Bal's gimmick is his ability to detach his limbs and use them to set-up traps throughout the arena. He is by far the most complicated VR in the game, has at least twice as many specials as anyone else, and I'm still not even close to understanding how to pull off all the shit that he does. Definitely for experts only.
- Built like a fuckin' tank. Dordray boasts the strongest V Armor in the game, which means that all but close-range or really powerful shots will just bounce right off of him with no effect. He's armed with a drill on his left hand and a clamp on his right, both of which can be detached and launched at the opponent from long distances. Even though he's slower than most VRs, he does have an extremely tight turning radius in his favor. His specials include powerful charging attacks and the ability to greatly increase his size.
- A lightweight VR with low HP but high armor and excellent homing attacks. She's custom-tailored for turtles, as she can use seeking ice pillars and dragons from long range while the enemy's shots just bounce off of her. The effectiveness of her energy attacks at short range is diminished, but she's decent at melee. Her special cuts her health by 50% of her max HP, which gives her angel wings and greatly increased speed. While in this form, one of her close combat attacks can drain the opponent of his HP in order to restore her own.
- Badass-looking grim reaper bot. Specineff is one of the more difficult VRs to use, but he's arguably the best. His dash is very short but fast. Most of his weapons use up too much ammo to be able to rely on rapid-fire like other light VRs, but they're very strong. His heat-seeking left weapon is one of the most aggravating attacks to dodge. One of his specials gives him 13 seconds of invulnerability, but he instantly self-destructs once this timer expires. A great desperation technique.
Ten Eighty Special
- A stripped-down, mass-produced model of Temjin lacking in features compared to all other VRs. He can't change direction mid-dash or use air dashes. If Temjin is the Ryu of Virtual On, then 10/80 is the Dan. He's a handicap character meant for experts only.
- A secret playable boss with a simple crystalloid appearance. He has unparalleled speed and offensive power (which can even be increased further with power up moves), and his right weapon recharges so fast that it has practically unlimited ammo. He's a verifiable killing machine, but his defensive capabilities are so poor that he's often relegated to joke character status, just one notch above 10/80. Ajim crumples like paper from enemy hits, and his health continually depletes during the match, meaning that a skilled opponent can just dodge and wait out the clock if he chooses. His special is a gigantic self-destruct blast that cuts 50% of his remaining HP but can seriously cripple the opponent.
- A nonplayable boss who shows up in stage 6 of Arcade mode. His appearance and battle theme are similar to that of [vidurl=
the final boss of Operation Moongate, but his attacks are completely different. He's only vulnerable while his core is exposed. Make sure to keep your distance from him during this phase so that you have time to react to the spacing of his attacks, and try using explosive attacks to shield yourself by cancelling out his beams.
- The nonplayable final boss of Arcade mode. Tangram's arena is unique, as there's no ground to stand on. The entire battle takes place in mid-air with Tangram itself as the gravitational center, and you can press either jump or crouch to alter your vertical positioning. Though Tangram can be damaged at any point in the match, it's only particularly vulnerable when its eye is exposed. Once you have the timing of its attack pattern down (eye opens, pause, shoots three spread lasers, pause, shoots giant beam, pause, eye closes), make sure to use your strongest attacks on the eye whenever there's an opening. Right turbo attacks (usually RTRW or RTCW) work best. If you lose against Tangram by KO, you can continue as normal, but if time expires, it's instant Game Over.
Match videos! (more under the spoiler)
Ajim vs Dordray
Post yours in this thread or send a PM my way and I'll add you to the list.
PA Username - Gamertag
Sixfortyfive - Sixfortyfive
poasting something foolishly foolish.