Thin Ace Combat 7 Assault Records
Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown does many things right to bring back the feeling of what many fans would consider the 'original formula' of the series. The atmosphere of the missions, presentation of the world and story twists fall well within the realm of what one would consider "Ace Combat." One of its features, as minor as it may seem, is noticeably lacking. The Assault Records of Ace Combat 7 are unexpectedly thin. The current iteration of these enemy Ace pilot records is nothing like they have been since 2006. Assault Records are personnel files of allies and enemies the player encounters throughout the story of certain Ace Combat games. This game feature was introduced to the series with the release of Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War (2006, PlayStation 2). They would then be seen again using the same name or under a different name with the same function in Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation (2007, Xbox 360), Ace Combat: Cross Rumble (2011, Nintendo 3DS) and now Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown (2019, PlayStation 4).
Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War provided the highest volume of Assault Records with 168 entries available, while Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation provides 45 entries. Ace Combat: Cross Rumble provides seven entries on certain characters in the Data Viewer - which provides information in the same way Assault Records do. Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown presents twenty-four entries. AC7 ASSAULT RECORD GALLERY Ace Combat 7 Assault Record gallery screenshots provided by TaskForce 23. The inclusion of Assault Records to the Ace Combat series was more important than the volume of text available would lead someone to believe. A few sentences of biography seem unimportant when shooting down a named enemy Ace to gain access to a unique paint scheme is the prize. However, for those that choose to delve deeper into the intricate world of Strangereal, these records are small windows into its minor details and background events.
Through reading these entries and comparing them with known information at the time of their game release, new details about Strangereal were presented. Minor details like the marital status of pilots and their hometowns could be found alongside information concerning Presidential assassination attempts, wars in unknown nations, shadowy technology transfers, the downfall of a governments and more.
The Assault Records of Ace Combat 7 are more like a trophy case than a library of data entries. Its single-page entries certainly feel more like Flavor Text than what their name implies. With only introductory information on the pilot, their unit and a picture of their aircraft, the layout is similar to how Ace Combat 2 handled the same information. This is less of an intentional throwback as it is more of a minor step back.
Examples of interesting Assault Records from past games are presented below along with explanations of their importance. Screenshots provided by BG. To read all Assault Records from past Ace Combat games, see Acepedia for more information. ACZ 028 - FREDI STARKE First mention of anything in 1940s Strangereal. Implies combat occurred in the 1940s as "Ace" pilots only gain that title from shooting down 5 or more aircraft. ACZ 057 - KREBBER LUDWIG Discusses The House of Ludwing, a Belkan royal family. Also includes a reference to the Legend of Totemhem and mention the Belkan Royal Dynasty. This entry is one of a handful which further detail the existence of a long history of Belkan Knights and royalty. ACZ 124 - THEODOR SANDER Becomes a member of North Osea Grunder Industries UAV Development after 1995. His work in this field would contribute to all future Grunder UAV programs. While it is not confirmed if he worked on these aircraft, Grunder Industries produced the Zone of Endless A.I. program which was mounted onto multiple aircraft. The following unmanned aircraft were also produced by Grunder Industries: ADF-01 Falken (AC2 1997), ADFX-10 (2019), ADF-11 Raven (SR 2019), MQ-99 (SR 2019) UCAVs. ACZ 167 - LARS MATTHAUS Communication log shows the connection between Belka's Rald Party and the A World With No Boundaries movement. In Ace Combat Zero, This lead to the downfall of the Rald Party in Belka and a complete change in the power structure in the nation. AC6 05 - DARIJO KOVAC Explanation of the Vampire Team being formed during the Estovakian Civil War. Describes the difference between the regular forces like the Strigon Team and a more composite unit like Vampire Team, which was made up of Ace pilots from defeated factions during the civil war. AC6 06 - FRANZ LEKO During the Estovakian Civil War, he conducted an ultra-low level attack deep in Island Coalition (an Estovakian armed faction) territory which arguably changed the course of the Estovakian Civil War. His actions enabled the defeat of the Island Coalition and their eventual absorption into the Eastern Faction which lead to the Eastern Faction’s overall victory and reunification of Estovkia. AC6 21 - LORENZ RIEDEL Established connection between Belkan War defectors to the events that lead to the end of the Estovakian Civil War. At the time, this record was the only non-Japanese language translated link to connect the technology transfer between Belka and Estovakia. Belkan defectors like Riedl were a part of constructing Estovakian military technology, such as the P-1112 Aigaion. AC6 25 - VALERIY NIKITOV Biography shows that he participated in four defensive missions to stop the Emmerian military from recapturing Gracemeria at the start of the Emmerian-Estovakian War. Adds a bit of explanation of what happened between mission 01 and mission 02 of Ace Combat 6. Special thanks to BG and TaskForce23 for their help in acquiring the necessary screenshots. About the Author Aaron "Ribbon-Blue" Mendoza The Director of Operations for Skyward Flight Media. A lifelong aviation enthusiast with a special interest in flight simulators and games. After founding Electrosphere.info, the first English Ace Combat database, he has been involved in creating aviation related websites, communities, and events since 2005. He continues to explore past and present flight sims with his extensive collection of game consoles and computers. | Twitter | Discord: RibbonBlue#8870