IntroductionLet's Play Front Mission 5: Scars of the War!
What's this game?
Front Mission 5 is a military/mecha SRPG released in 2005 by Square Enix, and developed by their Project Development Division 6 (PDD6) headed by Toshiro Tsuchida.
PDD6 was originally a separate company called G-CRAFT, who after producing Front Mission 2 were acquired by Square, where they made the majority of the Front Mission series games.
Like the Ogre Battle series, Front Mission was conceived of with a grand scope in mind, and unlike the Ogre Battle series, it was actually finished (For the most part).
Front Mission 5 is the game that caps off the series and draws together its different narratives into a cohesive whole.
After playing Front Mission 5, all the previous games in the series come to be seen in a different light given the new information it provides.
Essentially, Front Mission 5 tells the hidden story of the Front Mission universe. There will be many spoilers!
Cool story bro, but how does it play?
Front Mission 5 has the most refined combat system in the FM series,
and consists of turn-based combat that focuses heavily on class-based specialization and teamwork through the use of the link system developed first in FM2 and FM4,
but finally realized to its full potential in FM5. While FM5 does not feature the huge battles of FM2, it does have some fairly large-scale fights that rival most other SRPGs,
and unlike FM3 it is no cakewalk. Like all the FM games, FM5 also focuses heavily on unit customization through the acquisition and equipping of wanzer (mecha) parts.
Between missions are brief cinematics and a base exploration mode that allows the player to interact with NPCs via text-based dialog.
Finally, the game includes an arena mode, and a survival simulator
But wasn't this game only released in moonspeak?
Yes, the game was never localized for the English-language market,
but I translated it with some friends and released a translation patch available at http://frontmission.info.
DO NOT ASK FOR A PATCHED ISO, ONLY THE TRANSLATION PATCH IS PROVIDED.
Wanzers are neat! Where can I find some info on them?
For a listing of wanzer photos divided by manufacturer check out this page.
For a comprehensive listing of wanzer parts in the game check out this FAQ.
I feel like I'm missing a lot not knowing the rich lore of front mission universe. What are all these factions, what is the state of the world?
Here is a very rough world map of the game world:
The USN is in fact a union of North and South America. At the time the series was first created there was some talk of moving towards such a union, and it reached its zenith during the Clinton years before the whole thing fell apart and was forgotten. As we will see later in the game, the USN is very much a union of unequals, and the USA maintains a basically colonial relationship towards South America. If you want to learn more about it check out FM4.
The OCU is a union of Australia, Southeast Asia, Japan, and Korea. Again, there has been from time to time talk of forming some kind of umbrella organization like this (deliberately excluding China) but nothing much has come of it in reality. It also never has really been about independence from the US in the way that the EU was in the time of its formation. And talk about them going to war with the USA has never even remotely been on the table.
The EC is basically just the EU.
All the big super states are facing separatist struggles. The EC also has a rough relationship with Africa because of the colonial exploitation they tried to maintain there, as covered in Front Mission Alternative (Chronologically the first game in the series). The USN more or less muddles through things, but the OCU is in a state of near constant crisis. The apex of their power was when they defeated the USN in the First Huffman Conflict, but ever since then they have had to deal with separatism, corruption, infighting among members, and generally poor organization. This gets covered quite a lot in Front Mission 2 and to some extent in Front Mission 3. The OCU is dominated by Japan and Australia, and their colonial hinterland in SE Asia is very rebellious. The only organization they have that really is strong and unified is the Central Intelligence Service of the Union (CISU). In this way I think of them as somewhat similar to Pakistan, which has a similarly powerful intelligence agency and a similarly weak government. The EC has troubles not only with Africa, but also with Zaftra (Russia) as well. This gets covered in FM4.
For more information, check out the Wikipedia entry, which was largely written by leader of the translation project.
The Second Huffman Conflict
Episode 01 - Fort Monus Base
Episode 02 - Mission 1
Episode 03 - Mission 2
Episode 04 - Wanzer Roundup I
Episode 05 - Freedom Garrison
Episode 06 - Wanzer Roundup II
Episode 07 - Mission 3
Episode 08 - Freedom Garrison II
Episode 09 - Mission 4
Episode 10 - Peseta Garrison
Episode 11 - Mission 5
Episode 12 - Fort Monus Base II
Episode 13 - Mission 6
Episode 14 - Mission 6 Redux
Episode 15 - Wanzer Roundup III
Episode 16 - Mission 7
Episode 17 - B Device Plot Summary
The Strike Wyverns
Episode 18 - CVN-112 Eclipse
Episode 19 - Mission 8B
Episode 20 - Mission 9
Episode 21 - Mission 10
Episode 22 - Mission 10 Redux
Episode 23 - CVN-112 Eclipse II
Episode 24 - Survival Simulator
Episode 25 - Survival Simulator II
Episode 26 - Survival Simulator III
Episode 27 - Mission 11
Episode 28 - CVN-112 Eclipse III
Episode 29 - Mission 12 B
Episode 30 - Mission 13 B
Episode 31 - Mission 14
Episode 32 - Mission 15 B
Episode 33 - Wanzer Roundup IV
Episode 34 - CVN-112 Eclipse IV
Episode 35 - Mission 16
Episode 36 - Mission 17
Episode 37 - Fort Monus III
Episode 38 - Mission 18
Episode 39 - Mission 19
Episode 40 - Wanzer Roundup V
Episode 41 - Fort Monus IV
Episode 42 - Arena I
Episode 43 - Battle Simulator 11
Episode 44 - Mission 20
Episode 45 - Mission 21
Episode 46 - Mission 22
Episode 47 - Fort Monus V
Episode 48 - Wanzer Roundup VI
Episode 49 - Mission 23
Episode 50 - Alaska Radiation Research Complex
Episode 51 - Mission 24/25
Episode 52 - Mission 26
Episode 53 - Wanzer Roundup VII
Episode 54 - Story Wrap Up
Episode 55 - Mission 27 pt. 1
Episode 56 - Mission 27 pt. 2 / Ending
Bonus Episode - Mission 27 Hacked Save