The Ejectable Remote Launcher (E.R.L. for short) is a recurring weapons system in the Cyber Troopers Virtual-On series. It is the mainstay armament of the Bal series of Virtuaroids.
An E.R.L. is a detachable launcher that is remotely operated by the user. When attached, it can fire flat, ring-shaped laser beams that can erase enemy projectiles and floating mines that home in on opponents in ranged combat. When things get up close and personal, the E.R.L. can produce a beam claw or a beam blade for attacking opponents at close range. But, because it is a detachable, remotely-operated weapon, the E.R.L.s are a different story when deployed. When detached, the E.R.L.s would fly towards the operator's target and swarm it with projectile fire. In later iterations of the Bal series after the XBV-13-t11 Bal-Bas-Bow of the 1st generation, E.R.L.s can also be set up to create strategically-minded attack formations, and even launch out towards the opponent like missiles.
E.R.L.s are also fought as individual enemies in the Dramatic Mode of Cyber Troopers Virtual-On MARZ, particularly in the first mission of the Mars Polar Zone arc, "Controlling the Chaos". Therein, an enemy Bal d Meora VR deploys multiple E.R.L.s to attack MARZ's Defender bases, and the player has the objective to fend them off. Some of the E.R.L.s would directly attack the player. After a certain period of time, a cutscene plays, in which a swarm of E.R.L.s were about to fire on the player, until a partner Temjin 707J VR will appear and destroy them, leaving the player to fight the enemy Bal unit.
The E.R.L. had its start in the XMU project as a Slave Unit (S.U.) weapon. It was originally known as the U.R.L., the primary weapon of the XMU-11 design. It later became the E.R.L. weapon featured in the XMU-12 and XMU-13 designs. There was only a record of experimental basic research conducted in the E.R.L. technology.
The earliest known application of E.R.L.s in a Virtuaroid is with the highly-experimental XBV-13-t11 Bal-Bas-Bow, which was first sighted in an ancient ruins in area SA-C49 in South America by DNA forces in an attempt to regain control of the 4th Plant from Drammen's forces. The Bal-Bas-Bow came equipped with two E.R.L.s on its arms, one to fire ring lasers, the other to deploy F-Mines. When both are deployed at a time, they would swarm an opposing VR either with machine gun fire or energy beams.
The E.R.L. technology evolved in the 2nd generation of VRs, particularly with the XBV-819 Bal series, each model of which being equipped with four E.R.L.s, two at the arms and two at the thigh areas. With technological improvement, E.R.L.s could do more than just swarm opposing VRs with projectile fire; they could also be set up for complex, strategically-oriented maneuvers. This carried over to the 3rd generation XBV-821 Bal series.
List of VRs with E.R.L.s
- XBV-13-t11 Bal-Bas-Bow
- XBV-819-tr Bal-Bados/XBV-819-tr4 Bal-Bados
- XBV-819-ts Bal-Keros/XBV-819-ts/b Bal-Keros
- XBV-819-tm Bal-Baros/XBV-819-tm2 Bal-Baros
- XBV-821m-N Bal d Meora
- XBV-821m-A Bal b Cista
- XBV-821m-F Bal v Tigla
- XBV-821f-S Bal m Rino
- XBV-821f-C Bal m Landa
- XBV-821f-E Bal s Rimso