- "You truly are the pride of Martinez."
- ― Frederick Burford
Antares One (アンタレスワン Antaresuwan) is a main protagonist of Ace Combat: Joint Assault. Not much is known about this mercenary pilot, other than he has a prior military background and possessed exceptional skill and prowess.
Midway maneuvers and assault on Tokyo
Antares One first appeared when he joined Martinez Security and participated in the Martinez-USN-JSDF joint military show at Midway Island. His commanding officer Frederick Burford, on board AWACS Canopus, introduced him to the tutorial session prior to the exercise. He became acquainted with the allied Rigel Squadron and its members, Milosz Sulejmani, Daniel Oruma, Faryd Gaviria, and Tolya Kiriakov. He passed the tutorial, but Canopus detected unknown contacts from the east. Some of them broke off to engage Antares and his allies while the others continued west. Antares One destroyed all the attacking planes, but Burford got word that Tokyo, Japan was being attacked.
Antares and Rigel Squadron proceeded to the city, to find that it was being attacked by an aerial base, the Spiridus. The fortress ripped a massive hole in Tokyo Bay with its supercharged rail-gun. Canopus told Antares that the heat vent in the rear of the Spiridus was the weak spot, so he targeted the vent to disable the rail-gun. He and Rigel went to take down the escorts while Spiridus retreated over the Pacific, disappearing from radar.
The terrorists, known as the Valahia, raided Tokyo a second time. Antares One and Rigel Squad held the JSDF lines in the south, then returned to the city to counter the northern attackers, who were using a smaller airborne fortress, the Orgoi. He dismantled the aircraft's AA weapons slowly while witnessing the Orgoi's astounding agility in the process.
Meanwhile, Valahia leader Nicolae Dumitrescu, promised Sulejmani a better wage in exchange for his loyalty. Sulejmani, stating that money in exchange for enemy lives was all he valued, defected with the rest of Rigel Squadron and flew south, much to Burford's dismay and protesting. Antares One continued with the mission and destroyed the 'Orgoi' engines, dropping it into the bay.
Mission in Europe
He then flew to Egypt under orders of the newly formed IUPF to eliminate Valahia forces. Meanwhile, the Spiridus eluded Antares and the IUPF and disappeared again over the Red Sea.
However, Mr. Leblanc of the IIAO had been kidnapped in the Middle East and had to be rescued. Antares escorted a rescue helicopter to extract the official and his rescue team while fending off enemy forces and putting out pipeline fires that resulted from sabotage.
Then, the Mora Jamming Station in the Turkish Mountains was hindering commerce in some areas of Europe. Antares and the IUPF proceeded to attack the industrial facilities and substations supplying power to the jamming before destroying the station and its air-burst artillery cannons.
The Valahia then declared an attack on London, United Kingdom, using the Spiridus. Antares flew across the Adriatic Sea to London, shooting down Valahia aircraft that came his way. It was then that he encountered Sulejmani and his men, now calling as Varcolac Squadron. The traitors engaged Antares and surrounded him, but Antares fended off the squad. A Valahia submarine then surfaced and attacked Antares with the new Hi-TASM. Antares evaded the missiles and sank the sub.
He reached London just in time to engage the Spiridus. The Spiridus activated its anti-ground electrolaser cannons, only for Antares to blow them up. The Spiridus then used an AA electrolaser cannon against Antares. It missed, but destroyed two other IUPF fighters. Antares stripped the fortress of its weaponry and destroyed the Balaur's rear heat vent, destroying the fortress and causing it to crash into the River Thames.
Valahia announced its plans for creating a new nation through a nuclear scorched earth policy. The IUPF formulated an operation to destroy the Valahia and its nuclear missiles. Antares proceeded to the Serbian Mountains to destroy Valahia's radar sites, and encountered Varcolac Squadron for a second time. He forced the Varcolac to retreat, showing how he had improved. The next target was the stand-alone version of the Balaur in southern Romania. Despite defensive attacks, jamming and incoming fire from the Balaur itself, Antares bypassed the defenses and destroyed the complex.
Afterwards, he was assigned to fly the airliner of IUPF benefactor, Andre Olivieri, through the Turkish Mountains where Mora was formerly located. The remnant Valahia forces attacked, and forced Antares to fly into the canyon. Antares managed to fly to the end of the canyon, evading enemy fire, only to encounter more AA guns and attack helicopters. Despite the odds, he and Olivieri made it to safety.
Valahia Headquarters and the Golden Axe Plan
Next, the IUPF was to intercept the Valahia helicopter/naval unit that transported nuclear fuel to the missile silo. Antares One stalled the transportation by attacking their escorts to the point that IUPF naval ships were ready to surround the cargo ship and recover the fuel. Antares One reached Valahia's HQ, an old Soviet missile silo, in Central Asia and he encountered Varcolac Squadron for a third time. Varcolac then revealed that Olivieri had set up both IUPF and the Valahia for benefit, as part of Golden Axe Plan. Antares eventually shot down Sulejmani, with the entire squad following. However, there was little time to stop the launch, so Antares flew into the nuclear missile facility to disable it personally. While they were inside, Dumitrescu confirmed the GAP's existence and announced that its next stage was set in the United States. Antares destroyed the silo's controls before barely escaping the facility as Dumitrescu was killed in the ensuing explosion.
Martinez Security left the IUPF and made preparations to stop Olivieri from succeeding his plans in the United States. The Golden Axe Plan Private Army attempted to assassinate Antares and Burford because they knew the truth about the GA Plan. However, Antares managed to protect Burford and his forces from their enemies, including three attacking Orgois.
Martinez proceeded to South Nevada to eliminate GAP Private Army stationed at the abandoned airport. A new Spiridus fired Hi-TASM missiles at Martinez Security, but failed to score any hits. Antares and the ground forces managed to take the airport from the enemy. Antares flew to Lake Tahoe to destroy the Spiridus. Allied ground forces in Nevada launched powerful missiles to disable the radiation shield that was protecting the Spiridus' missile ports. Antares took the chance to destroy the missile ports, AA weaponry, IRCMs and engines. He quickly destroyed the AA electrolaser cannon and the ground forces fired a large missile, bringing down the fortress. All that was left was to defend San Francisco from the remnants of Olivieri's private army.
Defense of San Francisco and End of the War
With the backup of the US Navy Third Fleet, Antares One managed to protect the city. Then, the Varcolac Squadron challenged Antares for the last time, in their new GAF-1 Varcolacs. However, even with their superior aircraft and synchronized attacks, Antares managed to defeat the squad, leaving only Sulejmani. Sulejmani started to actively challenge Antares, trying to buy back what he lost when his parents sold him. Antares One ultimately shot him down.
Finally, he helped Dog Bear break into OLI's underground data center by targeting the entrance gate. Outside the skyscraper, Olivieri defiantly screamed at Antares, saying that he would not be stopped, only to be killed by Antares One himself, putting an end to the crisis once and for all.
After the War
Antares One makes one final appearance at the game's ending sequence, where he is seen taking off in an Su-37 Terminator for another mission.
- There is some disagreement between fans over whether Antares One's main aircraft is an F-22A Raptor or an Su-37 Terminator. Joint Assault's cover art prominently displays an F-22A, and both Ace Combat: Assault Horizon and Ace Combat Infinity have featured Antares's skin on the F-22A (in the latter, through the F-22A -Antares- ). However, the final cutscene in Joint Assault is believed to depict Antares One taking off in an Su-37, and the aircraft can't be changed.
- When Burford debriefs Antares on the destruction of the Golden Axe Plan, he refers to the US as "our country", possibly implying that Antares One is an American.
- Several characters state that Antares One has served in the military prior to joining Martinez Security.