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Starship Phoenix 5

VR deck overview.

The VR deck is a feature available on the Starship Phoenix in Up Your Arsenal. It is a holodeck training suite[1] that provides contestants with a few courses, in which contestants will fight test dummies in a simulated arena. After Tyhrranosis, Ratchet was ordered by Helga to complete her VR gadget training course before being allowed to take them and the coordinates to the research facility on planet Daxx.

VR deck gameplay

VR deck gameplay.

Completing the courses will earn bolts, and completing the final course will earn a titanium bolt, with an additional bolt being available for completing Helga's VR gadget training course. Ratchet is also able to test new weapons that he has not purchased by using the VR deck on the Phoenix. Once a challenge has been complete the bolt prizes are always divided by three and rounded up to a number divisible by 50, with a minimum limit of 50 bolts. Entering a challenge will also refill all of your ammunition, making entering and immediately exiting a cheap way to save on bolts.

A similar VR deck to test weapons appears in Into the Nexus.

Challenges

Challenge Description Prizes in bolts Rounds
First Second Third
Warm Up Fight Gadgetron test dummies in a simulated battle arena! 300 100 50 5
Don't Look Down Watch out for disappearing floor panels while fighting the test dummies! 500 150 50 6
Speed Round Destroy all the test dummies before time runs out! 400 150 50 2
Hot Stepper The floor panels will leave and return as you fight the test dummies! 700 250 100 8
90 Second Slayer Destroy even more dummies before time runs out! 1,000 350 150 3
The Shocker Destroy all the test dummies using only the Shock Blaster! 500 150 50 3
Wrench Beatdown Destroy all the test dummies using only the Omniwrench! 600 200 100 3
Nerves of Titanium Fight through the final VR battle and win a Titanium Bolt! 2,000, titanium bolt 650 250 12
Complete VR Gadget Training Complete VR Gadget Training Hypershot, Hacker, titanium bolt

Warm Up

The Warm Up challenge comprises five waves of different test dummies, all of which are fairly simple, and no hazards appear. In the first, test dummies using the Pyrocitor will attack Ratchet. These test dummies fire the Pyrocitor at a relatively short range; both the Shock Blaster, N60 Storm and Plasma Whip (if thrown) are therefore good at outranging them and destroying multiple at once, and the Nitro Launcher can be effective when they are clustered. The Whip has the added benefit of being able to easily hit dummies when surrounded if used in a melee attack.

In the second wave, test dummies will use the Walloper, and attack by aiming at Ratchet, then lunging forward with a melee attack. In the third wave, the test dummies will use the Bomb Glove, meaning a target reticule will appear on the ground, which has to be avoided while a counter attack is made. In both the fourth and fifth waves, the enemies will use a mix of all three weapons, and appear in greater numbers.

Don't Look Down

The Don't Look Down challenge has six waves in which floor panels will disappear over time, making the arena hazardous. The first wave has no panels which have disappeared, and a mix of test dummies with Bomb Gloves and Pyrocitors; as before, the Shock Blaster and thrown Plasma Whip are very useful against them. In the second wave, panels in between the outer sections of the arena disappear, and test dummies with Pyrocitors and Wallopers arrive; it is important to jump over the panels for this.

No more panels disappear for the third wave, and the wave consists of test dummies with the Walloper and Bomb Glove. For the fourth wave, the outer panels reappear, while the panels of the inner section of the arena disappear, and the wave consists of enemies wielding the Pyrocitor and Bomb Glove. No panels change for the fifth wave, in which enemies wield the Bomb Glove and Pyrocitor. For the sixth wave, the outer panels in between segments disappear as well, meaning all removable panels are gone, and test dummies wielding all three weapons appear.

Speed Round

The Speed Round has two waves with a time limit of one minute. In both waves, all three types of test dummies appear, and all panels are closed. The real threat is not the enemies themselves, but the one minute that you have to destroy them. A good strategy is to equip the Plasma Whip, run to one of the tubes where the test dummies are being spawned, and use it as soon as the tube retracts; this will destroy all test dummies being spawned from this tube, while the rest should still be in clusters, easy to dispatch. This can then be repeated for the second wave.

Hot Stepper

Hot Stepper has eight waves in which the floor panels change each wave, making each more hazardous. All three types of test dummies appear. A good strategy is to stay close to the segments around the outside of the arena, ensuring there is no reliance on any ground which can possibly disappear. By throwing the Plasma Whip, it is possible to outrange the test dummies and dispatch multiple at once, making it fairly easy.

90 Second Slayer

90 Second Slayer has three waves in which all three types of test dummies appear on all waves. All panels are present on the first wave, though for the second wave the outer panels disappear, and for the third wave the inner panel disappears while the outer panels reappear. As with Speed Round, the real challenge is the timer. The same strategy applies; equip the Plasma Whip and throw it at one of the tubes just as the enemies have been spawned from it to save time.

The Shocker

The Shocker has three waves in which only the Shock Blaster can be used. All three types of test dummies appear on all waves. All panels are present on the first wave, then for the second wave the outer panels disappear, and for the third wave the inner panel also disappears. As the Shock Blaster is mandatory, it is important to preserve ammo by waiting until enemies cluster together to fire at them and destroy multiple at once (another good opportunity is just after a tube has spawned some test dummies), and by making sure you never use up more than a third of your ammo per round. If the Shock Blaster upgrade is unlocked in which holding down the fire button will charge the Shock Blaster's attacks, it should not be used for this challenge, as it is an expensive use of ammo.

Wrench Beatdown

The Wrench Beatdown has three waves in which only the OmniWrench can be used. Test dummies with the Pyrocitor and the Walloper appear on all waves. All panels are present on the first wave, then for the second wave the outer panels disappear, and for the third wave the inner panel also disappears. For this, the best strategy is to throw the wrench often so as to avoid coming into close range with the test dummies, as they all attack at a relatively close range. By throwing the wrench and running, most of this damage can be avoided.

Nerves of Titanium

Nerves of Titanium is the final challenge and comprises twelve waves, and has the largest bolt reward of the VR deck challenges as well as offering a titanium bolt. On most waves, all three types of enemies are seen, with a few exceptions. All panels are present for the first, and second wave. For the third, wave, the outer panels disappear. For the fourth wave, the inner panel disappears, while the outer panels reappear. Then, for the fifth, sixth, and seventh waves, all panels disappear.

All panels reappear for the eighth, in which all test dummies use the Walloper, and remain for the next wave in which all enemies use the Bomb Glove. The outer panels disappear again for the tenth wave, in which all test dummies use the Pyrocitor and Walloper, and for the eleventh wave, the inner panel disappears while the outer panels reappear, and all test dummies use the Walloper and Bomb Glove. For the twelfth wave, all enemies use the Bomb Glove and Pyrocitor, and all panels disappear. After this wave is complete, all panels reappear, and Ratchet can collect the titanium bolt in the middle of the arena.

All of the strategies from before apply here: throwing the Plasma Whip or firing the Shock Blaster at clusters is the best way to deal with them, and standing near the outer segments and avoiding reliance on parts of the floor where panels are removed can negate a lot of the damage. The challenge is primarily an endurance challenge, so it is best to avoid being hit.

Complete VR Gadget Training

References

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