http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Live_A_Live_173.jpg

An ambitious game by {{Square}}, featuring multiple story lines set in seven time periods ("chapters"), which can be played in any order before culminating in one hell of a WhamEpisode. These story lines each provide a different setting and genre. Although the storylines are mostly standalone at first, they eventually combine into a single plotline that ''thrives'' on well-executed PlayerPunch moments.

The chapters of the game each draw on influences from different sources, as wide and varied as 80's anime, spaghetti Westerns, fighting games, ''Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey'', and ''Film/{{Aliens}}'', to name but a few. The game tends to [[PlayedForDrama play these tropes straight]] for the most part, but at times subverts them just as happily.

''Live A Live'' also deviates somewhat from the usual Squaresoft games when it comes to the battle system, being somewhere between standard TurnBasedCombat and a Tactics-style system. Although the battle system stays the same throughout the game, each chapter has its own distinct atmosphere and art style. They are, in chronological order:

* The prehistoric slapstick comedy romance chapter, starring Pogo the green-haired caveman and his monkey friend,
* The classical Chinese kung fu nature chapter, starring an old, dying Xin Shan Quan master and his potential successors Li, Yuan, and Sammo,
* The Japanese Bakumatsu StealthBasedMission political revolution [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot ghost robot]] maze chapter, starring the ninja Oboro and a mysterious prisoner,
* The SpaghettiWestern time trial puzzle chapter, starring [[ButchCassidyAndTheSundanceKid The Sundown Kid]],
* The modern day arcade fighting game chapter, starring the wrestler Masaru,
* The near future HumongousMecha {{Gainax}} MindScrew anime chapter, starring... well, Manga/{{Akira}},
* The sci-fi silent space SurvivalHorror TheComputerIsYourFriend chapter, starring the robot Cube.

Complete all chapters, and the final part of the story unlocks, tying the plot together and culminating in a quest to save all of existence.

(If you're considering playing the game for the first time, it is highly recommend you start with the robot sci-fi chapter. It's the only one that isn't either full of GuideDangIt moments or a complete {{Mindscrew}}, and contains a very nice tutorial mini-game. Both the kung fu chapter and the mecha chapter are also nice to begin with. After that, it may get a little bit [[NintendoHard difficult at times]].)

''Live A Live'' was [[NoExportForYou never officially released outside Japan]], but following two English FanTranslation projects, the game has picked up something of a [[CultClassic cult following]]. The latest AeonGenesis translation patch can be found [[http://agtp.romhack.net/project.php?id=lal here]].

Compare ''VideoGame/BahamutLagoon'' and ''TreasureOfTheRudra'', two similar SquareSoft games from the same time period.

Not to be confused with the LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya episode "Live Alive", The Wavering of Haruhi Suzumiya story "Live A Live", [[Series/KamenRiderRyuki Alive A Life]] or ''LightNovel/DateALive''.

A ROM hack exists called ''VideoGame/TouhouALive''.

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!!Live A Live provides examples of the following tropes:

* AbhorrentAdmirer: Okame-no-Kata in the Bakumatsu chapter.
** [[spoiler: Voice Heart, the boss of the Xin Shan Quan Inheritor's final chapter bonus dungeon is a male example.]]
* AbsurdlyHighLevelCap: 99 doesn't seem like much, but the most {{FinalBoss}}es can be defeated around level 10 (the King Mammoth, arguably the most difficult boss in the game, can be killed before level 20), and that's when LevelGrinding is even a possibility. Level 30 is almost overkill for the TrueFinalBoss.
** And your final skills are learned at ''16''.
* {{Acrofatic}}: Sammo, naturally.
* ActionGirl: Li.
* AdultFear: [[spoiler:Imagine if what Oersted went through - where all his friends and allies either turned on him, or died while trying to protect him - happened to you.]]
* AfterCombatRecovery
* AIIsACrapshoot: "Everything in this ship must work in harmony... I was built to maintain harmony... Therefore, my will is absolute... Nobody will stand in my way... Anyone who tries... Will be terminated! KILL YOU...."
** Somewhat subverted in that [[spoiler:The ship's AI is Odio]].
* AllCavemenWereNeanderthals
* AllYourPowersCombined: The focus of Masaru's chapter and his end quote with his chapter boss, [[spoiler:Odie Oldbright]]
* AltumVidetur: The ship in the sci-fi chapter is named ''Cogito Ergosum'', Latin for "I think, therefore I am." It describes Cube's theme succinctly.
* AmbiguousTimePeriod: The game avoids specifying dates at which chapters occur (although the timeframes are much clearer). Logs in the Science Fiction chapter even go so far as to hide dates with X's (although the "copyright" text in Captain Square minigame makes it clear it takes place no earlier than 22nd century).
* AnachronismStew: Anyone care to explain how [[spoiler:robots]] found their way into feudal Japan?
** [[spoiler:[[ClockPunk Karakuri ningyo]] are a surprisingly old Japanese craft.]]
* AndThenJohnWasAZombie: [[spoiler:[[AndThenJohnWasAZombie And Then Oersted Was The Demon King]].]]
* AnimeHair: Most of the characters keep it down, but Pogo, Matsu, and Akira more than make up for them. At least the latter two have an excuse: their chapter is modeled on a SuperRobot anime. Also, Oersted.
* ApocalypseHow: You can pull off a Class Z by [[spoiler:choosing the Armageddon option when your health is low in the final chapter with Oersted.]]
* ArrogantKungFuGuy: Odie Olbright
* ArtisticLicensePaleontology: Surprisingly averted in Pogo's chapter. [[spoiler:The final boss is a dinosaur, but it's also the ''only'' dinosaur in the entire chapter. It makes sense for Zaki's tribe to worship the last living tyrannosaur on the planet as a god.]]
* AsLongAsThereIsEvil
* AsLongAsThereIsOneMan: Subverted horribly. [[spoiler:Oersted believes that he can continue to fight, even as everyone else in the world turns against him, as long as there's one person who believes in him. She loses faith. He [[FaceHeelTurn doesn't]] [[WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds take it well]], to [[BigBad put it mildly]].]]
* TheAtoner: [[spoiler:Alicia as a spirit in Akira's Mind Dungeon gave Akira his best weapon and finally gets the team out of the dungeon which formerly had no exit. Straybow also, in a lesser extent, but only as far as [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone realizing just how much his jealousy cost Oersted and the world]].]]
--> [[spoiler: '''Alicia:''' Please... Please stop him... Oersted...]]
--> [[spoiler:'''Straybow:''' Is it my fault... My fault that he's become this way...?]]
** [[spoiler:Matsu]] qualifies as well, having performed a HeelFaceTurn some indeterminate amount of time after he [[spoiler:killed Akira and Kaori's father.]]
* AttackItsWeakPoint: Death Prophet can be defeated easily when you hit him on the tail. When you did, he'll unleash an attack called "Not the tail!", which will deal minor damage to the attacker, but deals 999 HP to himself, killing him outright (he only has 960 HP)
* BadAss: Arguably all the heroes.
** Corporal Darth from the Sci-Fi Chapter gets special mention. [[spoiler:He takes out the fake Cube quite handily, incapacitates the Behemoth (a beast so strong that it touching you results in instant death) by himself ''without killing it'', and ''lives''. It's safe to say that if the military picked someone a little less Badass to escort the Behemoth, Cube would've never made it to Earth.]]
** BadassCrew: [[spoiler: In the Final Chapter, if not played from Oersted/Odio's perspective. You pick one of the protagonists to play as and recruit three more to defeat the Demon King, but getting the best ending requires you to use ALL of the protagonists at one point.]]
* BadassBiker: Matsu.
* BeethovenWasAnAlienSpy: [[spoiler:Sakamoto Ryouma]] fought ''robots''.
* BigDamnVillains: At one point in the Bakumatsu chapter, a bunch of guards come after you, only to be attacked by a masked man. You can let the masked man kill the guards for you if you're going for zero kills.
* BigEater: Sammo, and to a lesser extent, Bel.
* BittersweetEnding: The Kung Fu chapter. Odie-Wang Lee has been defeated, and the Inheritor of the Xin Shan Quan style has been named [[spoiler: but the other two students are still dead, and the Master you've spent most of the chapter playing as dies just after recognizing his last student as his Inheritor.]]
* BloodFromTheMouth: [[spoiler: Hash]] starts doing this just before [[spoiler: he dies from the plague.]]
* BonusBoss: There are many:
** In Pogo's chapter, the King Mammoth.
** In Oboro's chapter, the Fish in the river, and the Ghost guarding the sword.
** In [[spoiler:the Final Chapter, there is one for every character's dungeon, and then some.]]
* BonusStage: The entire game of Captain Square in Cube's Chapter.
* BookEnds: Near the beginning of Cube's Chapter, Cube learns to make coffee, but is violently rebuffed when he offers some to Darth. At the end, [[spoiler:Darth, wounded and exhausted, sits down and quietly asks Cube to bring him some coffee.]]
** The Ancient China chapter begins with the Xin Shan Quan master practicing his art and then attempting to split a rock. When he fails, he realizes that he's grown too old and must find students. [[spoiler:At the chapter's end, whichever student survived practices the art in front of the graves of the master and the other students, turns to the rock, and splits it with one punch.]]
* BoozeBasedBuff: During the Western chapter, your healing items consist entirely of various alcoholic drinks.
** Of course, getting drunk comes with its debuffs...
* BossInMookClothing: A monster named Ishtar in [[spoiler:the final chapter]] gets no special fanfare, but not only does it have much more power than a normal enemy, it has ''the boss death sequence''.
* BossRush: [[spoiler:Also inverted in that you can play as the bosses.]]
** Could also apply to Masaru's chapter; the entire chapter consists of seven battles, but they're all against boss-level enemies.
* BoundAndGagged: Happens to Bel during Pogo's Chapter.
* BountyHunter: Mad Dog.
* BreakingTheFourthWall: The first thing you see at the start of Akira's chapter is Akira's eyes staring ''right'' at you. He then starts addressing you directly for a short time before the action cuts to his actual story.
* BrokenRecord: [[spoiler:After a certain point in Cube's Chapter, Captain Hol is only capable of saying "What, are you serious? That's... quite unfortunate..." Later, it's revealed to be a recording OD-10 made after killing the captain.]]
* ClimaxBoss: All the fights against the different Odio incarnations, and the Demon King in Oersted's Chapter.
* ConsolationBackfire: The game has a brutal deconstruction in form of [[spoiler:Oersted. After everyone turned his back on him because of an accident he committed (killing the king), he is convinced (by his remaining friend, who died soon after) that there's one person that believed in him: The Princess. So long as she believes in him, he kept fighting. So he set off to save her, only to find out that the accident was orchestrated by a jealous friend, and when he killed the friend, the Princess said that she already lost faith on him and committed suicide in front of him. Oersted in turn ''[[DespairEventHorizon snaps]]''. Then in retaliation, [[FallenHero he becomes the Demon King that he fought all this time]] [[FaceHeelTurn and then killed everyone there and then tried to kill everyone from different timelines]].]]
* CoolShip: Cube's chapter; it takes place entirely on the CoolShip.
* CrutchCharacter: Oboro and Pogo can (and probably will) be leveled up very high in order to defeat their respective {{Bonus Boss}}es, [[spoiler:making them ridiculously overpowered during the first half of the final chapter.]]
** Still other characters have stats--like Masaru's ludicrous HP--that make them practically invincible once you do get around to levelling them up.
*** A more straight example would be within the Xin Shan Quan Master. He starts at Level 10 and can beat up street thugs and forest tigers quite easily. However, as noted in the beginning of his story, he's getting weak and past his prime; he can't level up no matter how many battles you have him fight. It's for that reason he searches out for pupils and teach them what he knows to pass on the art.
* CyberPunk: Akira's chapter.
* DangerousForbiddenTechnique: The Xuan Ya Lian Shan Quan from the Inheritance chapter. You can only use it once for the final battle of the chapter. It stops being dangerous and forbidden in the final chapter, though, where it can be used at any time once it's learned. Justified, considering that it's only dangerous to the master because he was too old to use it - his disciples have no such problems.
* DangerousTerrain: In battle, there are different types of damaging panels: poison, water, fire, and electricity. These panels also effect enemies, and some enemies can recover on said panels. Oboro is capable of creating fire and water based panels, and Cube can create electric-based panels. Gori from Pogo's chapter can create poison-based spaces.
** The bosses love elemental spaces. Most notably, Ode Iou's true OneWingedAngel form has an attack which creates an enormous area of poison based panels. OD-10 also has Driveback, which creates electric based panels in a 3x3 placement (which can actually kill it).
*** Taken to extremes in the Captain Square minigame, the only part of the game where you can quickly die from elemental squares alone.
* DeathSeeker: [[spoiler:The Sundown Kid.]]
* DespairEventHorizon: [[spoiler: Oersted hit this pretty hard. After being tricked, he finds that everyone has now abandoned him and considers him a demon, his only remaining ally is dragged away to be tortured, and is blamed for the death of said ally who expends the last of his power to set Oersted free. Oh, then he finds out that his best friend betrayed him to this fate because he was jealous. Oh, and the 'Aesop' which has been so far in the game? "Don't lose hope as long as somebody believes in you". That went well. The last person who he hoped believed in him, the princess? After Oersted duels his traitorous friend and kills him, she asks why he didn't come to rescue her (Ouch. He did. Straybow only got there first by faking his death and ruining Oersted's life), declares that she loves said traitor, and kills herself. That was the absolute last straw, the severing of his last tenuous tie to sanity]].
** [[spoiler:Alicia crosses it when she realizes that Straybow, who is the one she ''truly'' loved, not Oersted, is dead. Which leads to...]]
* DrivenToSuicide: [[spoiler:It turns out Alicia only loved Straybow, never actually loved Oersted and hated the fact that she was being forced to marry him instead of Straybow. When she learns that Oersted has killed Straybow, she snaps and kills herself.]]
* DysfunctionJunction: The ''Cogito Ergosum'' cargo vessel in the Sci-Fi chapter is revealed to be one. Its regular crew consists of newly-activated worker robot Cube, Kirk, a macho JerkJock, his BitchInSheepsClothing girlfriend and communications officer Rachel [[spoiler: who ultimately suffers from LoveMakesYouCrazy after Kirk's death]], her ex-boyfriend, ship's cargo loader and all around ShrinkingViolet Huey, who she disdains and Kirk bullies for being a chicken, a nerdy, nebbish mechanic named Kato (also the OnlySaneMan), and a very distant, extremely hands-off captain [[spoiler: who is actually dead and being impersonated by the ship's Mother Computer.]] Not to mention its passenger, a gruff military officer who [[FantasticRacism hates robots]]. [[spoiler: This is actually a plot point, as all the conflict on the ship leads its Mother Computer 0D-10 to decide that the best way to maintain harmony onboard is to kill the entire crew. If the player has Cube access Captain Hol's log at the end of the chapter, he can see that the captain was planning on pretty much dumping the entire crew at the end of the mission and getting a new one that would function better.]]
* EleventhHourSuperpower: The Xin Shan Quan Master's chapter, with the Xuan Ya Lian Shan Quan.
** [[spoiler:In the Final Chapter, however, once you learn this with the surviving pupil, you can use this multiple times, thus making it an [[InfinityPlusOneSword Infinity Plus One Skill]].]]
* EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep: The Master, in the Ancient China Chapter; you do not name the Master, you name his fighting style. He is just referred as The Master.
** The Sundown Kid as well, for the sheriff of Success Town notes that he doesn't care for his real name.
* EvilSpeechOfEvil: Almost all of the Odio incarnations make one; the exceptions are O-D-O from Pogo's chapter, and O. Dio from Sunset/Sundown's chapter. The most memorable has to be the speech at the end of [[spoiler:Oersted's chapter, delivered by Oersted himself.]]
* {{Expy}}: Sundown is quite similar to [[Film/DollarsTrilogy Man With No Name]].
** Oersted is very similar looking to the Fighter from VideoGame/FinalFantasyI, especially with the remakes.
* FaceHeelTurn: [[spoiler:Straybow, and later Oersted.]]
* FallenHero: Hash in the medieval chapter. He was a hero who defeated the Demon Lord, but lost faith in humanity and went to live as a hermit in the mountains. He subverts it by helping Oerstred defeat the Demon Lord to prove that he is still brave. [[spoiler:Oersted eventually falls ''much'' harder.]]
* {{Fartillery}}: Both Pogo and Gori have gaseous attacks which can cause some status effects to boot.
* FateWorseThanDeath: In Akira's chapter, the people being abducted are being turned into liquefied humans to power the Kuruu Odio statue, or to become robotic super soldiers.
** [[spoiler:Oersted]] ended up with a horrible fate: [[spoiler:He is left in a land where people either think he is a traitor, or think he is a demon, because everyone who believed in him ended up dying. He winds up accepting the label of demon, and becomes the BigBad.]]
* FetchQuest: You don't have to go through the character dungeons in the final chapter, but if you don't, you'll have a difficult time with Odio and [[spoiler:you can't get the best ending.]]
* FightingGame: Masaru's chapter.
* FiveBadBand: Bakumatsu chapter villain Ode Iou has his own, mostly comprised of spirits and undead.
** BigBad: Ode Iou, [[spoiler: resident Odio incarnation.]]
** TheDragon: The spirit of Musashi Miyamoto, who serves as one of the final challenges before the player can take on Ode Iou himself.
** TheBrute: The spirit of Shiro Amakusa, who can be encountered if Oboro tries to rescue Ryoma from the castle dungeon. Oboro has to defeat Amakusa's Lost Soul minions before he can take on the ghost himself to defeat him for good.
** TheEvilGenius: Clockwork Gennai, who manufactures all of the traps in Ode Iou's castle, and is also a master of karakuri ningyo, as well as being a primitive cyborg himself.
** TheDarkChick: The spirit Yodogimi who pretends to be Ode Iou's daughter, the princess. Interestingly, if the "princess" was killed by Oboro earlier in the chapter, then Yodogimi will actually be the last member of Iou's band Oboro fights before he gets to the BigBad himself (otherwise it's Musashi).
* FreudianTrio: The Xin Shan Quan pupils:
** TheKirk: Sammo
** TheSpock: Yuan
** TheMcCoy: Li
* FunWithAcronyms: Read all of Cube's abilities in order and write down the first letter of each. [[spoiler: It reads HUMANISM, the main theme for Cube's character.]] A few early English translations screwed it up.
* GameWithinAGame: Captain Square in Cube's chapter.
* GatlingGood: O. Dio's weapon.
* GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere: There are multiple in the final chapter; the most notable example is the guardian of Masaru's bonus dungeon, who only appears if Masaru is in your party.
* GlassCannon: Several. Yuan has the highest power rating of the Kung Fu heroes, but the lowest HP. The Sundown Kid has very low HP as well, but strong, long-range attacks and some of the most devastating techniques in the game. Oboro is similarly flimsy, but he's a {{Ninja}}, which is enough said right there. [[spoiler:From Oersted's chapter, we also have Straybow, a standard swords-and-sorcery elemental mage. He's not so Glassy the second time you fight him, though.]]
* GrandFinale: The best ending.
* GoneHorriblyRight: Congratulations, Straybow! [[spoiler: You've managed to break Oersted and turn him into a villain in your world! It had the unfortunate side-effect of him transforming into the Demon King, a villain which transcends time and space!]]
* GuideDangIt: Oboro's chapter, period.
* GunsAreWorthless: Averted. The Sundown Kid is the strongest character in the game, even moreso if you get his [[InfinityPlusOneSword .44 Magnum.]] Gun attacks in general are long-ranged, damaging, take no time whatsoever, and tend to not pose a significant disadvantage on the character using them.
** And on the other end, O. Dio's [[GatlingGood ultimate]] [[MoreDakka attack]] has a range that's completely diagonal to the end of the field and hits for 999 damage. So basically, the Sundown Kid AND the BigBad of his chapter averts this trope.
* {{The Gunslinger}}s: Sundown and Mad Dog.
* HaveANiceDeath: Cube's chapter is full of them, and if you happen to activate any of them, you are greeted with [[spoiler:"In the end... Cube never made it to Earth..."]]
* HeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Zaki]], from Pogo's chapter, [[spoiler:for the final boss of said chapter.]] There's also [[spoiler:Matsu]] from Akira's chapter, [[spoiler:but it happened in the backstory.]]
** Though it's possible [[spoiler:Zaki's is more of an EnemyMine thing, since it doesn't seem like his opinions on anything have changed -- he just ''doesn't want to be eaten by a dinosaur.'' It's hard to tell with no text.]]
** [[spoiler:Considering after the fight with O-D-O, Zaki inherits the tribe's leadership and made peace with Pogo's tribe leader, safe to say that he did a genuine Face Turn afterwards.]]
* HeroicSacrifice: [[spoiler:Matsu does this to power the Buriki Daioh so he can save Akira and Kaori.]]
** [[spoiler:Straybow fakes having one during Oersted's chapter]]
* HistoricalInJoke[=/=]ForegoneConclusion: If you decide to follow Ryoma Sakamoto after you finished Oboro's chapter, in the final credits he'll be seen thwarting an assasination attempt on Ryoma. Note that the [=IRL=] version of Ryoma Sakamoto died because of an assasination.
* [[HoistByHisOwnPetard Hoist By Their Own Petards]]: The three antagonists in Akira's chapter get turned into liquified humans too when the mass of liquified humans they gathered end up engulfing them.
* HotBlooded: Fittingly, both Akira and Matsu. Masaru doesn't talk much, but he reveals his nature to fit this in a particularly epic moment at the end of his chapter.
* HumansAreBastards: [[spoiler:The insane AI in the Sci-Fi chapter killed off the crew members because it feels this way. Later, there's the Medieval chapter...]]
** Indeed, [[spoiler:most of Odio's various incarnations are centered around this.]]
*** Contact: A tribe is willing to sacrifice a captured human begin to appease their God, [[spoiler:and Pogo is exiled from his own tribe for helping her.]]
*** Inheritance: A local gang causes trouble and steals from local villages, and when reprimanded by the Master, retaliate by [[spoiler:destroying his Dojo and killing two of his pupils.]]
*** Secret Orders: [[spoiler:Ode Lou planned to take advantage of humanity's inherit greed and distrust by selling dangerous weapons, ultimately hoping to spark a war.]]
*** The Strongest: While Masaru becomes the strongest by defeating his opponents in fair combat, his first challenger arrives [[spoiler:and explains how he mercilessly killed each one to prove his own strength.]]
*** Wandering: [[spoiler:O. Dio is in fact a horse given human form by the vengeful spirits of cavalrymen slain by Indians.]]
*** Flow: [[spoiler:The human leaders of Japan plot to sacrifice their nation to Odeo.]]
*** Mechanical Heart: [[spoiler:The constant infighting of the crew lead OD-10 to conclude that they were a threat to its mission of maintaining harmony on the ship.]]
* HumongousMecha: "Go! Go! Buriki Daioh!"
* InfinityPlusOneSword: Notable in that you need to get them all for the best ending.
* InfinityMinusOneSword: There's not one but ''two'' swords in Oboro's chapter that are his 2nd best weapon (one is his best for the chapter, one you get after you beat it), although both of them are absurdly difficult and obscure examples of GuideDangIt. And you can only get one.
** Pogo's 2nd best weapon is a '''COKE BOTTLE''' which can only be acquired by killing the king mammoth.
* InterfaceSpoiler: In battle, enemies consist of still images that slide around when moving and attacking and usually take up multiple spaces. Zaki only takes up one space and has idle, moving, and attacking animations like the members of your party. Guess who joins you in the fight against the chapter boss? The same thing also happens with Mad Dog in the Western chapter and Li and Sammo in the Kung Fu chapter.
* ItsAWonderfulFailure: Die in any of the chapters, and you get a nice little scene of someone or something reacting to your demise.
* KaizoTrap: Can sort of happen in Sundown's chapter; [[spoiler:if you choose not to duel Mad Dog, you'll fight him one last time after the credits roll. However, it's arguably ''harder'' to die than to win the fight, meaning you'd have to ''really be trying'' to invoke this trope.]]
** A more plausible invocation of this trope is vs. any boss monster that self destructs as a final attack. If you took to the strategy of getting everyone close in order to pin the boss in, then watch as everyone dies.
* KillAllHumans: Odio's primary goal.
* KillEmAll: [[spoiler:The "Armageddon" Ending.]]
* KleptomaniacHeroFoundUnderwear: Akira's chapter. Belonging to three different people, no less. Bonus points for not actually doing the act himself, even though he gets smacked for putting the one who did it up to it.
** Sundown and Mad Dog can also swipe Annie's nightie in the Wild West chapter.
* KnightInShiningArmor: [[spoiler:Oersted, deconstructed to hell and back.]]
* LargeHam: Zaki, somehow, despite not having a single line.
* TheLastDance: [[spoiler: Hash accompanies Oersted, Straybow, and Uranus to the Forbidden Land even though he's secretly dying from the plague so he can end his life doing something important. He dies soon after killing the (false) Demon King.]]
** In a way, so is [[spoiler: The Xin Shan Quan Master's assault on Odi-Wang Lee's school. Given his advanced age and the way he attempts to do it without his last remaining student, odds are good that the Master wasn't planning on coming back from dealing with Lee.]]
* LetMeTellYouAStory: Akira's chapter is entirely this, with Akira as the story teller. Even has a bit of HeKnowsAboutTimedHits as Akira introduces you to the gimmick of the chapter.
* LetsPlay: [[http://lparchive.org/Live-a-Live/ There's one in LP Archive]], and rather unique for the sarcastic comments made by the characters, be they HeroicMime (but mostly Oboromaru) or not, and even had humorous dialogue/story for the final chapter. Oh, and most of them are renamed hilariously (Pogo becomes... [[TheFlintstones BamBam]], The Xin Shan Quan style becomes VideoGame/ShaqFu, Oboro becomes [[BarackObama Obama]] (thus, Obamamaru), Akira becomes Hiccup, Masaru becomes 'Mister' (thus with his last name Takaharu, it becomes analoguous with Creator/MrT). Sundown, Cube and [[spoiler:Oersted]] got more common renames.
** Also existing is a [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUOI1qtaOWY youtube-based LP by Boltage McGammar]]. Video-based, accompanied with decent voice acting by one man, as well as fun renaming with everything else with names starting with 'B' (Such as Sundown Kid -> Badass Kid, Oboromaru -> Bentomaru, Cube -> Block, etc). The SelfImposedChallenge thing about Sundown below? It's from this LP.
* LoadBearingBoss: Subverted. So very, very subverted.
* LostForever: As long as you do not complete [[spoiler:Oersted's chapter]], you can replay any chapter to attempt to get a better run or collect items you may have missed. However, once [[spoiler:Oersted's chapter is finished and the final chapter is opened]], you can no longer replay older chapters, so anything you missed becomes impossible to reclaim.
* LuckBasedMission: Beating Pluto in Captain Square depends entirely on how often the enemies use their strongest attack.
** Also learning Great Asia's movements. Dude is so fixated with his Bite attack that possesses so much range that he'd use that over and over and over instead of the learnable techs. Fortunately, [[spoiler:Masaru learns any attacks he misses when he levels up in the final chapter.]]
* MagikarpPower: Bel, in Pogo's chapter. She is ''unspeakably'' underpowered compared to Pogo and Gori, especially against the enemy levels you're up against at the time. However, if you manage to carry her all the way to level 7 in the short time before she's [[DistressedDamsel kidnapped again]], she learns "La La", a ranged [[MusicalAssassin singing attack]] that packs enough power to ''ruin'' O-D-O in 2 rounds.
* MeaningfulName, NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: [[spoiler:The end-of-chapter bosses, with the exception of Straybow, are all variations on "Odio". And ''odio'' is Latin for "hatred".]]
* MoreDakka: O. Dio's solution to a lot of things.
--> '''O. Dio''': It doesn't matter how many rats you rustle up...
--> '''O. Dio''': You won't be able to win against a Gatling Gun!!
* MurderIsTheBestSolution: Odie Oldbright kills all the wrestlers that Masaru faces in his chapter. [[NoHoldsBarredBeatdown Masaru proves him]] [[SubvertedTrope wrong.]]
* MultipleEndings: Four in total.
** And that's not even counting all the dozens of variations there are to the two better endings.
* NightmareFace: [[spoiler: OD-10's manifestation in the virtual world. Even moreso if you scan the central tile on it's body.]]
* {{Ninja}}: Oboro's chapter.
* NonstandardGameOver: All over the place in Cube's chapter, along with one in Oboro's chapter.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Sammo for Sammo Hung. Max Morgan from Masaru's chapter also has an uncanny similarity with HulkHogan.
* NoYou: Pogo and Zaki do this in picture/emoticon format.
* NubileSavage: Bel.
* OldMaster: The Xin Shan Quan Master. Unusually for the trope, he is his chapter's protagonist, rather than a side character. [[spoiler:At the end of his chapter, he dies, and it's his prize pupil who goes on to participate in the final chapter.]]
* OmnicidalManiac: The game has a fair number of these, but [[spoiler:Odio]] in particular.
* OneHitKill: Attacks that cause stone count. Pure Odio has the attack [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Life Eraser]].
** O. Dio's Gatling Shots, which do [[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill always does 999 damage]].
* OneWingedAngel: [[spoiler:Ode Iou turns into a giant frog-like monster holding a cobra.]]
** [[spoiler:Oersted's Pure Odio form is actually angelic.]]
* PacifistRun: One of the possible ways to beat Oboro's chapter.
* PaintingTheMedium: In the most recent version of the fan translation, every level has its own font for displaying dialogue. For instance, the Western Level's text looks like a old-west sign, the Ninja level's text looks like Japanese calligraphy, and [[spoiler:Orsted's text gradually becomes more and more distorted after his StartOfDarkness]]. In the final chapter, everyone speaks using their respective chapter's font.
* PowerCopying: Masaru. Each time he gets hit by a wrestler's signature moves, he learns that move immediately; it's actually possible to have him defeat a wrestler using that wrestler's signature move. Also the Xin Shan Quan inheritors, sort of. Any of them ([[spoiler:whichever one doesn't die]]) will learn all of the Master's attacks anyway, but you can influence which ones they learn first during the training sessions. Beat one up with only the Ryuuhawan, for example, and they'll learn the Ryuuhawan when they next level. Switch to killing them with Old Fox Dance after that, and they'll learn Old Fox Dance next, etc.
* {{Prehistoria}}: Pogo's chapter.
* PresentDay: Masaru's chapter.
* PressXToDie: [[spoiler:The airlock in Cube's level. Hrm, two switches. (Presses first switch, watches outer door cycle open) I wonder what kind of "Don't do THAT!" message I'll get if I try to open the inner door too? (presses second switch, explodes in incredulous laughter as Cube is sucked out into the vacuum of space.)]]
** There's also [[spoiler:Fight / Pass / Item / Armageddon. Guess which option gets you the worst ending?]].
* ProWrestlingIsReal: Masaru's chapter.
* PsychicPowers: Akira has them. Telepathy, Telekinesis, [[PlayingWithFire Pyrokinesis]], [[AnIcePerson Cryokinesis]], [[HealingHands Vitakinesis]] and various illusion-casting and physical-power-amplifying powers besides. He's got 'em all.
* PunnyName: All of the Demon King's names in each chapter, except for the Medieval Chapter and Final Chapter.
* PuzzleBoss: In Cube's Chapter, Earth from Captain Square counts, as you need to defeat a Fire Elemental and a bunch of Water Elementals. [[spoiler:The Fire Elemental can kill you with one hit, but if pushed onto Water panels (Which Water elementals make with their attacks), it will die from Water damage]].
** Even better is the second boss in the Demon's Peak from Oersted's chapter. [[spoiler:Attacks that strike from the front will not deal enough damage to kill her (as her attacks sap your health and Strength), but Oersted has one attack that can strike from behind without moving, which can kill her easily.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: The Xin Shan Quan Master launches one on the Yi Po Men School after [[spoiler: its students attack his own school and kill two of the Master's students.]] He attempts to do it on his own but will be joined at some point by his [[spoiler: surviving]] pupil. They then proceed to kick nine kinds of ass through all of Yi Po Men's various students (thugs and assassins mostly) right up to the most senior circle of students and the chapter's BigBad, Yi Po Men Master Odie-Wang Lee.
* RobotBuddy: Cube. Unusually for the trope, he is also the main character of his chapter, but he's still Kato [[spoiler:and Darth]]'s friend.
* RobotMe: Oboro, with some guesswork, can find a blank robot and bestow it with his likeness and afew of his moves.
* RobotWar: Occurred in the backstory of the Sci Fi Chapter. Darth, who has lost many friends to the battle robots, is particularly bitter over it.
* RunningGag: The whole Watanabe thing, where someone ([[strike:mostly]]always a father) dies shortly after it's brought up or said.
** It happens once in every chapter. Some are more obscure like the antenna in Cube's chapter, and a way to trigger an audience member getting mauled in Masaru's. Or one is completely missable, like Wan Tan from the Kung Fu chapter, which can only be seen if you picked Sammo as the successor.
* SapientShip: [[spoiler:Cube's chapter; also AIIsACrapshoot.]]
* SayMyName: All over the place in the Cowboy chapter.
* SdrawkcabName: The title itself. As written in the artwork, it looks a vertical mirror is centered on the A, creating a perfect palindrome (LIVE A ヨVI」). The fact that "live" backwards spells "evil" is not a coincidence.
* SecretlyDying: [[spoiler: Hash.]]
* SelfImposedChallenge: In the Cowboy chapter, you set traps to prevent having to fight O. Dio's goons. Of course, you don't have to set a single one and fight the guy with his entire ensemble, which take up most of the field, AND O. Dio himself. Observe: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wOIowYJvhu0 The reason why Sundown's the most badass of all the main characters.]]
* ShoutOut: Plenty of them, ranging from diverse sources (mostly movies rather than games) such as ''Film/TwoThousandOneASpaceOdyssey, TheGodsMustBeCrazy, Film/ForAFewDollarsMore, StreetFighter, Manga/{{Akira}}'' and ''Franchise/{{Alien}}''. A few references are made with the names too, such as the various crew members in Cube's chapter ([[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries Kirk]] and [[StarWars Darth]] being the most obvious, but [[SilentRunning Huey]] less so). Finally, the alien monster in Cube's chapter - a fierce, purple quadruped nicknamed "Behemoth" - is a cameo from Square's [[Franchise/FinalFantasy slightly more famous series]].
** "[[{{Shane}} Sundown Kid! Come back, Sundown Kid!]]"
*** "Sundown Kid" is a take on the name of a famous [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sundance_Kid outlaw]] in American history who has had at least [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Butch_Cassidy_and_the_Sundance_Kid one well-known film]] made about his life.
*** The four guys in the bar are [[JohnWayne Wayne]], [[Creator/ClintEastwood Clint]], [[GeneWilder Gene]] (wonder if he's also known as [[BlazingSaddles the Waco Kid?]]), and [[Creator/MelGibson Gibson]] (who's not as much of a Film/{{Maverick}} as you'd expect).
*** Gene may also be a nod to Music/GeneAutry.
** Decking yourself out in [[Franchise/KamenRider Rider accessories]] in Akira's chapter. Besides its namesake, it's just full of lovingly corny, Japanese retro sci-fi in general.
** There is no possible way that Gori's constant snickering wasn't a reference to [[DastardlyAndMuttleyInTheirFlyingMachines Muttley.]]
*** Also Zaki's tribe uses 'cars' very similar to TheFlintstones.
*** The primitive man's InfinityPlusOneSword? A simple [[TheGodsMustBeCrazy coke bottle]].
*** O-D-O being worshiped by the cavemen as a god is highly similar to ''Anime/DaikyouryuNoJidai''.
** If you play the piano in Akira's chapter he'll play the [[Franchise/FinalFantasy Chocobo Theme]].
** Max Morgan = HulkHogan
*** And Odie Olbright is a likely reference to wrestler Gary Albright
* ShutUpHannibal / WorldOfCardboardSpeech: Each character provides one after the final battle towards Odio, about why they always win and why he keeps losing.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: Largely idealistic.
* StandardStatusEffects: Poison, Paralysis, Blindness, Confused, Petrified, Slow, Faint, Death (In which the character disappears from battle and cannot be revived). Along with these, there is also Drunk, Broken Arms, and Broken Legs.
* TheSmurfettePrinciple: Li is the only female protagonist. She's only one of two playable female characters in the entire game. On top of that, she's optional; depending on the player's choices in the Kung Fu chapter, Sammo or Yuan could take her place.
* SoWhatDoWeDoNow: Used in an interesting way in one of the endings [[spoiler:Consumed by hatred, Orsted lashes out at humanity. In the final chapter you can play as him, controlling in the bosses, gleefully crushing the underlevelled humans. If Orsted wins, after indulging in empty spite, theirs nothing left to do but aimlessly wonder his world alone.]]
* SpiritualSuccessor: ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger'' shares many similarities with ''Live A Live''.
* StartOfDarkness: [[spoiler:Oersted's chapter.]]
* TheStinger: Particularly in Pogo's chapter. It ends with Pogo speaking the first words mankind ever spoke. Namely, Love. And the Gori snickers. Most chapters have a stinger of their own, but it's mostly just a 'fin' screen.
* StoneWall: MASARU ([[spoiler:But only in the Final Chapter.]]). When he can level up, he does so quickly, and his HP and defenses shoot through the roof. It's rare to see him ever die once leveled, even without the best armor.
* StreetUrchin: Yuan.
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Bel.
* SuperRobot: Buriki Daioh, in the Cyberpunk chapter.
* SwordOfPlotAdvancement: Brion, in the Final Chapter. It is required to enter the Forbidden Land.
* TerminallyDependentSociety
* ThemeMusicPowerUp: Pretty much once per chapter, [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome but best embodied by Buriki Daioh.]]
* ThenLetMeBeEvil: [[spoiler: Oersted.]]
* TitleThemeDrop: The game's title theme reappears in the Final Chapter as the random battle theme.
* ToiletHumor: One of Gori's attacks is him throwing his poo at the opponent. Just like a real ape!
* TomatoSurprise: O. Dio is the last survivor of the infantry that was wiped out, yes. [[spoiler:What you don't know is that the last survivor was a horse, who was possessed by the spirits of all those who were slain.]]
** ShownTheirWork: O. Dio is described as the only survivor of the Seventh Cavalry, Custer's unit. The sheriff of Success notes with confusion that he'd heard there were ''no'' survivors. In real life, [[spoiler:the only survivor of the Seventh Cavalry was, in fact, one of the horses.]]
* TomboyAndGirlyGirl: They never meet per se, but amongst the playable females, Li (tomboy) and Bel (girly).
* TookALevelInBadass: At least half of the playable characters become {{Badass}}es over the course of their chapters. The rest were {{Badass}} to begin with.
* TheTropeKid: The Sundown Kid.
* TroubledButCute: Akira.
* TurnCoat: [[spoiler:Straybow, with a FaceHeelTurn. Also fulfills the ForgottenChildhoodFriend trope.]]
* TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture: Again, Akira's chapter.
* {{Uncoffee}}: Black tea, in the sci-fi chapter. Subverted with most fan translations, which just call it "coffee" outright.
* UnstoppableRage: Several:
** Masaru, before fighting Odie Olbright.
** O. Dio, before fighting Sundown and Mad Dog. [[spoiler:It turns out that Dio was a horse possessed by the accumulated rage and hatred of a cavalry that had been wiped out.]]
** Akira and Matsu both have moments in Akira's chapter.
** [[spoiler:Oersted, during the scene at the end of the final chapter that leads into the BossRush.]]
* UranusIsShowing: Uranus! Uranus! [[OverlyLongGag FUCKING URANUS!]]
* VideoGameCrueltyPotential: One way to get Oboro's InfinityPlusOneSword in his chapter is to kill everyone in the castle, which makes you just strong enough to fight a BonusBoss for it. This includes innocent servant girls and lady nobles...
* VideoGameCrueltyPunishment: If you off even just one female (even the kunoichi. The ghosts are fair game, however) in the castle before a [[GuideDangIt specific point]], then you won't be able to get one of the best accessories in the game.
* VillainProtagonist: [[spoiler:Oersted, if he is selected for the final chapter.]]
* VillainTeamUp: At the end of the Western chapter, [[spoiler: if Sundown doesn't kill Mad Dog, after he leaves Success Town he encounters his rival again in the desert, who's now riding O. Dio, reverted back into his true form of a horse. It's almost immediately subverted when Sundown shoots Dio's reigns causing him to buck Mad Dog off and run off into the desert, forcing Mad Dog to chase after him.]]
* VisionsOfAnotherSelf: Odio's seven reincarnations.
* WhamEpisode: [[spoiler:And once again, Oersted's chapter.]]
* WhamLine: You probably guessed it long before, but after a certain point in Cube's chapter, inspecting any database terminal, computer, or anything electronic displays the message [[spoiler:"Resistance is futile. [[MasterComputer I]] have taken control of the ship."]]
** [[spoiler: Oersted, a silent protagonist, speaking at all is the start of this.]]
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: This one's a bit complicated: [[spoiler:As he's dying, Hash tells Oersted that the creature they just killed couldn't have been the real Demon King. Oersted's second visit to Demon's Peak ends with him becoming Odio. So what happened to the previous Demon King?]]
** [[spoiler:The real demon king -- that is, the one Hash killed previously -- never came back from the dead at all; he was never present at any point in the chapter. It was all a ploy by Straybow, at least up until the point where Oersted takes up the mantle himself. Hash's comment is a hint that Straybow's "Demon King" was an illusion without the Demon King's real strength.]]
* [[WhenAllYouHaveIsAHammer When All You Have Is A Gun]]: Whereas the rest of the characters in the game get a pretty good variety of attacks, Sunset's and Mad Dog's attacks can pretty much be summarized as "shooting people," "shooting multiple people," and "shooting multiple people many times."
* WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue: After the battle with Odio, everyone returned to their timelines, and...
** Pogo [[spoiler:had his first baby with Bel. However, Gori surprises him that he's having many baby gorillas with the female gorillas they rescued before.]]
** The Xin Shan Quan master (Yuan/Li/Sammo) [[spoiler:is training a new generation of Xin Shan Quan students.]]
** Oboromaru [[spoiler:either continues to be a ninja in service of the Enma clan, or becomes Ryoma Sakamoto's bodyguard, foiling an assassination attempt.]]
** Sundown Kid [[spoiler:returned to wandering in the wilderness. Depending on his actions, he may or may not have to deal with Mad Dog again.]]
** Masaru [[spoiler:closes his current training room, picks up his bag and [[AndTheAdventureContinues resumes his journey in his quest to be the strongest.]]]]
** Akira [[spoiler:lives his life normally with the orphanage kids and occasionally visits/assists Toei, who is now currently trying to use the teleporting device on Taro... [[CallBack before it breaks down again]].]]
** Cube [[spoiler:returns to the now-repaired Cogito Ergosum, reuniting with Kato and Darth. Kato gave him a warm hug.]]
* WhyIsntItAttacking: [[spoiler:Comes up in Oersted's story, but]] it's a ButThouMust battle even if you notice something's wrong.
* TheWildWest: Sundown's chapter.
* WingedHumanoid: The Odio Mole, [[spoiler:who seems to be Oersted after getting a pair of vulture wings and becoming completely bald and naked]]
* WorthyOpponent: The Sundown Kid and Mad Dog seem to regard each other as this. [[spoiler: Especially if Sundown doesn't kill Mad Dog at the end of his chapter.]]
* YokoShimomura
* YouALLShareMyStory: The Final Chapter.
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