Easter eggs are intentional inside jokes or hidden messages scattered within various forms of media. The Ace Combat series contains a large number of Easter eggs within its games, typically referencing other Ace Combat games or Bandai Namco properties.
List of Easter eggs
List of Easter eggs
Ace Combat 2
List of Easter eggs
- In the mission Jewel Box, there are several advertisements in buildings throughout Port Edwards. They include:
- The Ridge Racer series' mascot, Reiko Nagase
- Assoluto, a Ridge Racer vehicle manufacturer
- The Assoluto Istante (incorrectly spelled as "Istanet"), a vehicle from Rage Racer
- Almighty Human Project, the project of same name featured in the game Techno Drive, a "driving school" Arcade game released by Namco in 1998, which the designed sprites by Kazutoki Kono would be lated reused in Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere's artstyle.
- "WonderPage", the original name for Namco's official website at http://www.namco.co.jp/
- A Cessna-like light aircraft with water pontoons, an aircraft that appears repeatedly throughout the Ridge Racer series
- Terrazi (incorrectly spelled as "Terazzi"), a Ridge Racer vehicle manufacturer and an enemy unit in Xevious
- AERO, a COFFIN model
- A Port Edwards restaurant named "KFO"
- A Port Edwards hotel named "G Room"
- A musician named "GNO"
- A Port Edwards welcome sign
- Two unknown images and the number 1000 below each, supposedly items from some video game
- Namco Plug-in-Days, likely a reference to Namco Plug & Play Games
- The billboard "Kantalis CS.D.Dept.e-3" is a reference to Kantaris, an antagonistic corporation featured in the original Time Crisis' Special mode.
- In the same mission, Jewel Box, a building with the word "Namco" on top appears near the enemy unit farthest to the south.
- The enemy targets in Cuckoo's Nest, on Hard difficulty, make the shape of Pac-Man on the radar.
Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere
List of Easter eggs
Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies
List of Easter eggs
- The game's first and last missions, Sitting Duck and Megalith, take place over North Point and Twinkle Islands. This is opposite of Ace Combat 2, where the first and last missions, Gambit and Fighter's Honor, took place over Twinkle Islands and North Point.
- The Namco logo is hidden in the mission Invincible Fleet, straight north from the starting position.
- The walls of Megalith's central silo seem to be made of the same 3D textures used in the central silo of Fortress Intolerance from Ace Combat 2.
Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War
List of Easter eggs
- There is a hidden Namco logo in the mission Shorebirds. From the start of the mission, fly eastward in a straight line. Eventually, you'll reach a shoreline area, with several groups of small, white buildings. Once you reach this area, head slightly northeast and scan the ground in the green fields of the mainland. Somewhere in the area is a large crop of the Namco 50th Anniversary emblem, alluding to Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War's release in 2004, 50 years after Namco's founding in 1954.
- The mission Demons of Razgriz features dozens of groups of polar bears, which were added to promote Free Flight and to test whether it was possible to visually confirm the size of a human being in Ace Combat 5's engine.
- In the missions Ice Cage and White Noise, a large snowman appears next to a hut in the Yuktobanian POW camps - fully built in Ice Cage, but almost completed melted in White Noise. If the player shoots the snowman in Ice Cage, it will tilt sideways, partially melted.
- In the mission Desert Arrow, the player can find several crop fields strewn across the Jilachi Desert. Several of these fields are in the shape of Pac-Man and ghosts from the series.
- During the cutscene after the mission "Final Option", a man can be seen sitting on the OFS Kestrel's island, playing "Zig-Zag" on a harmonica. "Zig-Zag" is a musical piece from Ace Combat 04, featured during the cutscenes of the Storyteller Boy.
- During the pre-battle sequence in the mission "ACES", when all the Osean and Yuktobanian squadrons join the Razgriz's formation and sing The Journey Home in unison, the voice of Alvin H. Davenport can be heard among those singing, even though he was Killed in Action in the mission "Journey Home". Later on in the mission, right before the tunnel is opened, an allied soldier, with what sounds to be the same voice, says, "Man, that's a big tunnel."
- Another easter egg in the mission "ACES" is a building that can be found while flying along the river. If you look to your left while flying along the river you should see a building with red letters that says "Namco Hometek Inc" (although, it is somewhat hard to read unless you get very close to the building).
- In the final mission, "The Unsung War", reach the SOLG's descent point in time with the ADF-01 FALKEN. Once the descent timer begins, approach the SOLG and fire the TLS. Once the laser impacts, you will receive the "Hold Fire" message, warning the player to stop firing. This is rather strange, as the player's objective is to destroy the SOLG. However, the message can also be interpreted as "Hold [the fire button]", as holding and enabling the weapon tracking view will give the player a full view of the SOLG completely falling apart. Another possibility is that because shooting non essential pieces of the SOLG causes them to break off, which in turn can cause them to strike your plane, you are being advised to hold fire until you are actually targeting a piece of the SOLG you need to hit.
- Complete any mission that concludes with a landing sequence with the ADF-01 FALKEN. Once the "Mission Accomplished" message appears, switch to your SP weapon and fire your TLS before the screen goes black. If done correctly, you will start the landing sequence with the TLS still in effect. However, the laser protruding from the TLS bay will be twice as larger as the original, as well as having a yellow/gold coloration.
- A profile view of Red Baron, colored in blue, is displayed on some airliners in Apito International Airport during Chain Reaction. The airliners also display the letters "BLUE MAX". This is a direct reference to Sky Kid
Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War
List of Easter eggs
- The following characters from Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War show up in the mission "Mayhem" as ace pilots. They only appear on the Mercenary Ace Style except for Heimeroth, and and only under Ace difficulty except for Bartlett.
- Jack Bartlett pilots an allied F-14D Super Tomcat with the callsign HRTBRKONE, the same callsign he uses in Ace Combat 5.
- The player will encounter Schwarze Team, a "shadow assassin" squadron whose primary goal was to shoot down defectors and deserters. During "Mayhem", they were chasing Wolfgang Buchner, callsign HUCKEBEIN. Buchner later becomes the character Peter N. Beagle ("Pops") in Ace Combat 5.
- The leader of the Grabacr Squadron, Ashley Bernitz, appears after Schwarze Team is encountered and the ace Nachtigall is shot down, under the callsign GRABACR. If the player does not shoot down Bernitz, Bernitz himself will shoot down both Bartlett and Pops. When Bernitz reappears in "Final Option" as the leader of a disguised Grabacr Squadron, Pops and Bernitz recognize each other.
- The leader of the Ofnir Squadron, Michael Heimeroth, will show up after Schnee Team is encountered, under the callsign OFNIR.
Ace Combat X: Skies of Deception
List of easter eggs
Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation
List of Easter eggs
- The Tokyo building where Namco-Bandai Games is located can be seen in the city of Gracemeria. When the first mission, "Invasion of Gracemeria", begins, the building should be located on the top-left corner of the screen after slightly yawing to the left. It's behind a smoke plume and is close to the ocean.
- Also, in "Invasion of Gracemeria", northeast of Gracemeria there is a plantation with the word "Namco" on it.
- In "Sipli Field", on the northernmost edge of the map, just to the East of the power lines, is a snowman. It faces south-southeast.
- When flying in San Loma, fly to the east of the airport at the south of the city. Near the airport is a large sign on the sands, which reads "Welcome to San Loma". The sign itself is a reference to the "Coronado" sign present in real-life Coronado Beach, California.
- In mission 12, "Weapons of Mass Destruction", fly towards the north-eastern corner of the map, and scan the ground. In this region lays the Project Aces emblem.
- In mission 14, "Gracemeria Patrol", former Emmerian Independence Radio operator DJ Zed will say over the radio that a woman named Maria sends a message through the radio to her husband, Dominic. The comment is an obvious reference to Epic Games's famed Gears of War series, more specifically to main character Dominic "Dom" Santiago and his wife, Maria.
- Another easter egg in mission 14 can be found by flying along the second river to the east. Keep flying until you see a building with the window lights in the shape of Pac-Man. Near the Pac-Man building you can also see another building with the lights in the shape of a Pooka, a character from Namco's Dig-Dug game.
- In "Chandelier", a comm on the radio saying "Galm One, do you read me? Shoot down the enemy ace and your reward will be multiplied by ten". A mercenary posing as Galm One, or Cipher himself, was probably hired by Estovakia.
- Additionally, "Mobius" is mentioned in the "Chandelier" mission on the radio where a voice says, "Mobius, back me up. I'll strike while descending." Whether this is Mobius One or an imposter is unknown.
Ace Combat: Assault Horizon
- In several cutscenes throughout Assault Horizon, a character bearing an uncanny resemblance to the Ace Combat 5 incarnation of recurring character Kei Nagase can be seen in the background. This was first reported prior to the game's release, as Nagase could be seen in the E3 "Trinity" trailer at 1:19 where main character William Bishop and the rest of the Warwolf Squadron walk inside a NATO hangar. Additionally, Coyote 1's voice bears a resemblance to Kei Nagase's voice as well. There is also Nagase F-22 paint theme found inside Assault Horizon's game resources.
- In two cutscenes, the number 30 is seen on the island of the aircraft carrier used by Task Force 108. This is the same number seen on the OFS Kestrel, not to mention there is no CVN-30 in the US Navy.
- In Mission 15, "Hurricane", Warwolf 3 says, "Warwolf 1, Akula's at the edge of my radar. He's almost out of range." However, due to the wind shears and radio interference from the hurricane and tornado, it sounds almost exactly like Warwolf 3 had said "Mobius 1" instead of "Warwolf 1." Whether this was intentional or not is unknown.
- Also, in the "Hurricane" mission, the player can destroy the tornado that Hurricane Alex spawns using a Trinity missile from the PAK-FA. This is best done from a high altitude while pointing the nose of the PAK-FA down at the water, since Trinity is air-to-ground. If positioned correctly in the center of the tornado, Trinity will blow it off the mission. The wind shears won't even remain; it's as if the tornado never existed. This makes it much easier to dogfight and Illich is not able to hide himself and escape into the tornado.
- During "Inferno", Guts can occasionally be heard saying "Time to do this Omega 11 style!", however this is not subtitled and is usually said while Kingmaster is speaking during the second attack on the airfield. Omega 11 himself was a pilot from Ace Combat 04 who winds up usually being shot down several times across the campaign, including by the Yellow Squadron at Comona. During "Akula", there is a pilot with the callsign of Viper 7. Viper 7 himself was in Ace Combat 04 usually accompanying Mobius 1 throughout the campaign and being transferred into Mobius Squadron.
- In the cutscene prior to mission 2, Inferno, the emblems of Galm and Garuda teams can be seen on the wall to the right as Bishop and Guts enter the base for their briefing.
- During the mission "Power Play", when you chase an enemy through the gates of the hotel, Guts will comment "Dammit! This ain't Ace Combat bro", directly referencing the series itself.
Ace Combat Infinity
- Two times during the teaser trailer, the 1983 arcade game Mappy is referenced. During the first half of the trailer, someone is humming the theme song to the Mappy game. For a split second in the second half, a pair of wireless headphones are displayed, which have a digitalized white silhouette of Mappy himself on the right side.
- Infinity has already made numerous references to other Ace Combat games. They are as follows:
- The space object hitting the Earth in the trailer is reminiscent of the Ulysses (AC04 and AC6).
- Images were displayed of structures that look familiar to Stonehenge (AC04) and P-1112 Aigaion (AC6).
- Both Edge (AC5) and P-1113 Kottos (AC6) were mentioned in the teaser campaign.
- Original aircraft such as the ASF-X Shinden II (ACAH) and CFA-44 Nosferatu (AC6 and ACAH) were seen in the trailer as well.
- In the Team Deathmatch mission Avalon Siege, the background music is originally "The Demon of the Round Table" from the Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War Original Soundtrack. However, this changes to Zero if at least one player on one team is flying either the F-15C -Cipher- or the J35J -Cipher- and at least one player on the other team is flying either the ADFX-01 -Pixy- or the F-15C -Pixy- , referencing Zero, the final mission in Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War.
Outside Easter eggs
Other franchises have made references to Ace Combat through Easter eggs in their media as well.
The Twilight Conflict stage in Tekken 7 features numerous aircraft from Ace Combat flying by: the Ka-50 Hokum, the T-50 PAK-FA (which is even carrying Trinity), and the CFA-44 Nosferatu. The Arena in Tekken 7 also features a new General Resource Limited logo, previously only seen in Ace Combat 3: Electrosphere concept art.
In episode 1, a PS3-inspired game featured the title Base Combat with an aircraft resembling the MiG-29A Fulcrum on the foreground.
Just Cause 2
Sword Art Online
Taiko no Tatsujin
Several songs from the Ace Combat series are playable in the game itself, such as "IN THE ZONE" from Joint Assault, "Night and Day" from Ace Combat 2, "Fighter's Honor (Flying Remix)" from Assault Horizon Legacy, "Comona" from Ace Combat 04: Shattered Skies, as well as Roca Roja from Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown.
No Game No Life
In the light novel's eighth volume, the protagonist Sora describes a nation using nuclear weapons on their own territory to stop advancing enemy forces, referring to it as the "Belkan Defense".
Astro's Playroom is a PlayStation 5 launch title that features numerous Easter eggs to PlayStation games over the years. Near the beginning of the Electrocloud level in the Memory Meadow world (the world focused on the original PlayStation), the player can witness an Ace Combat Easter egg: a CFA-44 Nosferatu flying in circles while sporting Phoenix's livery from Air Combat, one of the original PlayStation's launch titles. The CFA-44 Nosferatu debuted in Ace Combat 6: Fires of Liberation, an Xbox exclusive, and had never been depicted in the Air Combat livery before.
- Techno Drive full playthrough
- Nosferatu in Tekken 6 screenshot
- Nosferatu in Tekken 6 in gameplay video
- Tekken 7 Character Trailer, Ace Combat Surprises. Reddit. Published January 28, 2016. Retrieved January 28, 2016.
- File:General Resource New Logo.png.
- Ace Combat Infinity "advertisement" in Sword Art Online II episode 1
- Ace Combat Infinity "advertisement" in Sword Art Online II episode 8
- @PROJECT_ACES (May 23, 2019). https://twitter.com/PROJECT_ACES/status/1131484916426739712. Twitter.
- "7月9日（木）発売のPS Vita用ソフト『太鼓の達人 Vバージョン』、TVアニメ『うたの☆プリンスさまっ♪ マジLOVE1000％』主題歌など収録楽曲を追加発表". moca-モカ-. Published on May 7, 2015. Retrieved on May 26, 2019.