The Let's Play Archive

Armored Core: Project Phantasma and Master of Arena

by ArclightBorealis

Part 16: Master of Arena - Chapter 6: We in the Big Leagues Now

This update's gonna be fairly arena focused, though we'll still be kicking this off with another mission from the campaign.

The requester is Izumo Materials. We've recieved information indicating that a colossal cannon, built during The Great
, is in the process of being restored.

Verify this information, and if the reports we've recieved turn out to be true, destroy the cannon before restoration can be

Izumo Materials, whose emphasis is space development, has plans to launch a satellite.
The cannon is apparently set to target this satellite.

If restoration of the cannon is indeed underway, explosive charges must be set and the cannon
destroyed completely.

Another mission that requires us to destroy something huge, only now we're on a time limit.

This cannon is a large, cylindrical tower that has four levels, and on each level we need to place one bomb on it. All this needs to be done in 5 minutes, which like a lot of missions in this series with time limits, it's more than enough for a skilled player.

The spots are already easy to identify because of the darker grey color, but the game still labels them as "Target" just to be safe.

Also while you're doing all this, 8 Butterfly MTs are constantly barraging you with missiles from all angles. They don't really change their altitude by a large degree, so fighting them from the higher platforms is much preferable to doing it from the bottom of the tower. But this mission doesn't require us to deal with them if we want. Just get the bombs planted.

As you'd expect, the mission is never quite over once you've completed the main objective.

Another Barracuda drops an AC into the mission zone. Time for a battle.

Locagos' AC Toll-Keeper hops around a lot as result of being a reverse joint AC, but thankfully he doesn't go any higher than the second level of the cannon. That said though, his only weapon are the plasma cannon weapon arms, and he's got two ammo magazines equipped to extend his ammo count by 40%. He did keep a wide distance between us however, which makes aiming at him a bit easier as you have more room to follow his movements.

With the enemy AC destroyed, now we can call it a wrap on this assignment.

This mission overall is pretty frantic in a way that I enjoyed, and it's got a bit of a similar vibe to the Destroy Giant Tank mission, in terms of dismantling a powerful weapon of gigantic proportions. Also there is an ending cinematic to this mission where the cannon fires if you fail the mission. Maybe in the post game once all the missions are unlocked I'll show it off.

Now, time to take a new batch of opponents in the Sub-Arena. There are two other missions I could have taken at this point, but I wanted to minimize the amount of Sub Arena fights I'd have to do at once as soon as I completed the campaign, as the list expands in the post game to show ALL possible Ravens.

Evil Kiss' most powerful weapon is the large missile launcher on his back, and when I was doing a recording of this fight, I took too much damage from those missiles that I didn't have much health left to withstand his handgun shots. This is why I stayed far away and pelted him with my back cannon because he only really fired those missiles once I was in a close enough range to him. Misdirecting large missiles can be fun, but there's still a risk of losing a shit ton of AP from it. In an open area like this, I didn't want to risk it a second time.

Remember this guy from Assist Marine Lab? Guy has pitiful movement as you would expect from a tank treads AC, and even crazier was that he did not hit me even once. I primarily uses a rocket launcher and bazooka, and against both of those I moved fast enough that they all missed.

Poison Tail makes use of his movement and speed to avoid a lot of shots and get behind me. I almost got a laser blade hit on him before stun locking me out of it, but other than that he doesn't really didn't really do much damage.

I honestly should not have won this fight the way that I did. Bibs makes more use of his AC's mobility than even LD did, which made my back cannon useless for most of the match. Except for the very end when both of us were attempting to out damage each other, and I came out on top with less than 300 AP to spare. Again, there is no way I should've won with the way I was performing this match.

Another quad leg AC that moves all over the place, but still not quite as annoying as the last fight. Plenty of moments where I got some good hits on me, and I did a good job evading his missiles for the most part.

Now, out of these five Arena matches, winning the fight with Bibs earns us another AC part, a right arm weapon.

This is classified as a machine gun due to its form and rate of fire, but the most obvious difference looking at the stats is that it's an energy weapon. It has fairly low energy drain with each shot as well, plus 500 ammo. The attack power though is pretty low, and because it's an energy weapon it pulls its power directly from the AC's generator, so you still have to watch your boosters if you want to use this weapon constantly. It's still very neat, and while I don't use it on missions, it's a thing I've messed around with for fun in the past. Might get some use in future Arena battles.

But first, we've reached the next threshold in our progress, as we've been kicked out of the Arena menu and received a new message.

Sender: Lana Nielsen

Here is a request from your sponsor.
Please read the mission description

It appears that your skill and
rating as a Raven have increased.
It's just a matter of time before
you'll be allowed to enter
the Arena.

Well, at least this next mission is Lana approved, so there won't be any consequences after the fact.

A Secret Material, developed by PROGTECH, was stolen. We are still investigating, but it appears as though the culprit
may be The Wolf, a ranked AC sighted nearby.

The last known location of the thief was in the vicinity of Fort Garden. You mission is to search the Abandoned Mine and
recover the stolen material.

As this request originates with your Arena sponsor, and is a priority mission, your Arena challenging rights have been
temporarily suspended.

This material we're retrieving really has no importance to the story or anything, though because this is a request coming from our sponsors, the reward has to be something good.

This level is incredibly vertical. Lots tall shafts connected by small corridors in the walls.

A drop down the first one brings us close to a room with an elevator that brings us even further underground.

I like this little detail of the large trucks parked on each level of the shaft as you descend. It helps to remind you that this is an environment designed for humans and large robots to be operating in simultaneously.

Alas, that is the only elevator we will be riding this mission. The rest is a lot of falling.

There are multiple exits out of a vertical shaft, although some of these will lead to dead ends.

Along the way, Spatula MTs and Float Suits will try to impede our progress, the latter being especially annoying (both to keep track of and get a picture of for this update. These things aren't MTs as much as they are flying powered armor, which is why they're so small. There was a similar variant to these powered armor suits that showed up in a mission in Armored Core 1, though they weren't able to fly indefinitely.

Eventually, we'll reach an exit out of the steel corridors into a large cavern where our target awaits.

The pilot of the Wolf, Prime, does not fuck around at all despite being a slow tank AC. All of his weapons hit hard, inflicting splash damage as well if taking a direct hit wasn't bad enough. The only sure fire way to survive is to move around a lot, unless you build your AC with a fuck ton of shell defenses to deal with it. And even then it's still devastating.

His color scheme also helps him blend in somewhat with the environment, which would've made this fight more nightmarish if the game was designed with manual aiming for everything.

The Wolf has been put down, and we only lost around a thousand AP from that encounter. Not to bad, I'd say.

With the container retrieved, we complete the mission and we are now returned our Arena privileges once again.

Well, that and an even better reward from our sponsor.

Congratulations. Your registration
is complete, and you're hereby
certified as a contender in the

Usually, a potential candidate must
wait until a contender leaves the
Arena, but an opening was available
just in time for your registration.

Concentrate your efforts on the
Arena for the time being, but keep
in mind that we may still require
your assistance in further missions.

As a gift, please accept this
50000C and an AC Part
developed by our company.

Good luck to you in your
conquest of the Arena.

So we got money, a new weapon, AND we finally challenge the actual ranked Arena ACs in battle. Awesome.

That second paragraph about an opening just happening to become available in the main Arena was no doubt due to me murdering Prime who was ranked 14th in the Arena. Whether it was something planned on the company's part or arranged by the Nest, either way it's awfully convenient for us. But I'm not complaining.

This is another weapon type that typically uses solid ammunition and this version is an energy variant. However, unlike the energy machine we got earlier, this one was TREMENDOUS fire power and incredibly long range. Both are actually greater than any single right arm weapon in the game. What does come as a downside however is the ammo count. Ten shots makes it very inadequate for actual mission use, and even in the Arena you have to be a master marksman to make every shot count. Oh well, gotta have something to balance it out. Still very impressive regardless.

So we got access to the Main Arena, however we can still challenge anyone in the Sub-Arena if we so choose. But because of our promotion, our Arena profile only shows up in the main ladder now and not the Sub-Arena. Still, huge progress has been made, and as PROGTECH said we should focus our efforts on climbing the ranks. And that's what we'll do in the next main update.