[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Terranigmafront.jpg]]

An ActionAdventure slash [[RolePlayingGame RPG]] for the SuperNintendoEntertainmentSystem published by [[Creator/SquareEnix Enix]] and developed by Quintet as a SpiritualSuccessor to ''VideoGame/IllusionOfGaia'', which in turn was a SpiritualSuccessor to ''VideoGame/SoulBlazer'' which was a SpiritualSuccessor to ''VideoGame/ActRaiser''. Still with us?

The game takes place in a post-apocalyptic Earth. After the forces and Light and Darkness fought a fierce war with no winners, all life was wiped-out from the surface and the continents were sunk in the oceans. Life could only endure underground, where everything got covered by a crystal-like mist.

The story centers around Ark, a mischievous little scamp who, bored with life in the quiet underground village of Crysta (the only human village left) decides to ignore the orders of his [[WastelandElder village elder]] and [[NiceJobBreakingItHero Open That Which Should Not be Opened]], which results in the entire population of his DoomedHometown (except the Elder) turning into crystal. From there, Ark is then tasked with not only restoring his hometown, but also [[SavingTheWorld reviving the world above them]].

This quest takes Ark to resurface all the continents and start the circle of the evolution of the species, from plants, to animals and finally human being. And from there, recreate all of human history, including events like the discovery of America or inventions like Edison's light bulb, among many others.

So similar in play style to its predecessor, ''Terranigma'' has often been confused as, and even referred ''to'' (in-game, no less) as ''Illusion of Gaia 2''. A fantastically enjoyable game, but was generally crippled in sales due to being released very close to the end of the Super Nintendo's life, as well as being released practically everywhere in the world ''[[NoExportForYou except America]]'' due to the bankruptcy of Enix America and not being able find an American publisher due to the Nintendo 64 literally being ''right'' around the corner (it was already released in North America when ''Terranigma'' was released in Europe). The multiple themes of religion (as you might guess, this game doesn't make any Creationist happy...) and death present in the title probably had a role too.

Known as ''Tenchisouzou'', the original Japanese name of the game, it also got a short {{Manga}} adaptation by the same name.
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!!Tropes featured in this game include:

* AbsurdlyHighLevelCap: Level 50. A usual play-through ends with the character's Level at the 30-35 range.
* AbsurdlySpaciousSewer: The sewers in Neotokio.
* AfterTheEnd: Sort of.
* AllJustADream: [[spoiler: The spirit journey]], OrWasItADream It's possible that it shows how a past lifecycle ended.
* AlternateHistory: A bit hard to avoid because of the DecadeDissonance. Also, in the town expansion sidequests, the player can change history. For example, if you lie to Bell about his girlfriend dumping him, he won't invent the telephone.
* AnInteriorDesignerIsYou: Ark can design his own house in Loire, but it doesn't serve much purpose. You can save your game and rest for free in it, though it costs so much compared to inns that it's unlikely you'll ever make a profit.
** Possibly parodied, as Ark remarks that he doesn't have any use for much of the furniture when he buys it.
* ArtisticLicenseBiology: Continuing on ''IllusionOfGaia'''s theme of trying to [[ShownTheirWork show their work]] but not knowing quite enough:
** You basically recreate the evolution of the species, which is supposed to take MILLIONS of years, in what in-universe doesn't look more than a couple of months.
** It's explained late in the game that [[spoiler: Beruga created a vaccine to cure people of a deadly virus. However, vaccines are useless once you're infected. All they can do is train your immune system to kill the virus faster in case you're infected. A scenario that would have made more sense would be for most people to have already been infected by the time the vaccine was completed, making it nigh-useless.]]
** In the ending, it's revealed that [[spoiler: Yomi is LUCA, the last universal common ancestor for all lifeforms. Except that he's multicellular, so that can't possibly be true. Even if we assume he's supposed to be the LUCA for Kingdom Animalia, he has bilateral symmetry, which only appeared midway through animal evolution.]]
** During chapter 2, you revive birds, then all animals, then humans. While the last one can be excused due to HumansAreSpecial, birds are animals too. They're not even in a different phylum than the animals in the Safaritorium! You also never revive fungi or microorganisms, despite them being just as (if not ''more'') important to the ecosystem than plants.
*** The order of revival is patterned after the order of creation in [[Literature/TheBible the Genesis narrative.]] First Land, then plants, then birds (and sea creatures), then the rest of the animals, then man.
*** Fungi show up near the Ra Tree after it's revived. Its possible that fungi and microorganisms are lumped in with plants.
* BatmanGambit: [[spoiler: The Elder manipulated Ark into resurrecting life and leading mankind's evolution for one purpose - to release one of the antagonists.]]
* BackgroundBoss: [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]] with Gossie. The enormous, [[BreathWeapon fire-breathing]] two-headed dragon looks quite menacing, but it's actually a friendly creature. The real boss are the Hitoderons, the smaller starfish monsters in the foreground.
* BadassCape: Ark has a ''really'' nice-looking traveling cloak that he sadly doesn't wear except for when he's traveling the overworld.
* BecauseDestinySaysSo: Or rather, [[spoiler: Because Destiny Says You Can ScrewDestiny. Err... ThatCameOutWrong, but Ark is basically Destiny's special friend. Half of Ark (presumably, the dark half) technically exists beyond the scope of fate.]]
* BeneathTheEarth: The Underworld.
* BigBoosHaunt: [[spoiler: Louran]] and Sylvain Castle.
* BigEater: Ark, who will eat any food you have him interact with.
* BlindIdiotTranslation: Oh, so many examples in this game.
** The aforementioned IllusionOfGaia 2 reference should've said [[MarketBasedTitle Illusion of Time]] 2 (but it does say so in the Spanish version), because the English version of Terranigma only came out in Europe, and not America. The Japanese version uses the actual name for this game ("Tenchi Suzo") in this scene.
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9_HjqiotvpE&feature=relmfu#t=04m40s Another example]]: four evil dolls circle Ark singing a Japanese children's nursery rhyme, the last line of which is a clue to which doll is the "real" one that Ark should attack. The dolls' circling is timed so that they stop as soon as the nursery rhyme is finished. Now, to be fair, this is a very tricky thing to translate. There are a few ways one could go about this:
*** 1. Try to make an English nursery rhyme that uses the same number of characters as the original Japanese, so that the nursery rhyme would still end in the right place. This would be almost impossible due to the extreme verbosity of the English language as compared to Japanese.
*** 2. Write an English nursery rhyme that's as short as you can get it, and collaborate with the coders to lengthen the dolls' spin time to match the length of the new nursery rhyme.
*** 3. Write an English nursery rhyme that's as short as you can get it, and collaborate with the coders to speed up the rate at which the text appears so that it matches the length of time that the dolls spin.
*** 4. Be unfathomably lazy and just do a literal word-for-word translation of the nursery rhyme, leave the dolls' spin length alone so they stop spinning right in the middle of the song, before the last line that gives the hint to the identity of the "real" doll has shown, and call it a day.
*** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V4fR9zLuHBA#t=5m20s Guess which one the localization team chose?]]
* BossRemix: If you listen carefully, you can hear traces of ''Setting Off on a Journey'' and ''Light and Darkness'' in the final battle theme, ''Overcoming Everything''.
* ButThouMust: Among the most {{Tearjerker}} use ever, when [[spoiler: Ark tries to search in himself whether he loves the darkside or lightside Elle more... right after darkside Elle sacrifices herself for him. [[TakeAThirdOption He decides he can't decide]].]]
* ChekhovsSkill: There exist only two critical uses for guarding: one is the boss fight at the end of the EscortMission, and the other is the final battle where it limits the power output of the WaveMotionGun attack to ScratchDamage.
* ComicBookTime: The time in Terranigma is much more confusing than Comic Book Time. People and animals are not born but come into existence (when Ark resurrects them or when a town expands). Assuming the game spans hundreds of years, all of the characters are immortal (and not aging [[spoiler: Except Leim]]). Assuming the game spans only a few years, every event (towns developing, [[spoiler: King Henri's invasion of Storkholm]]) takes place incredibly fast and the overworld characters do not have a history prior to their "resurrection".
* CompressedAdaptation: The two volume Japan-only manga, which is currently being translated by Glacial Rebellion on Blogspot.
* CollisionDamage: Can be confusing at times, as many enemies have weirdly-sized hitboxes.
* ContinuityNod: One of the places Ark can (optionally) resurrect is Mu, the location of the Vampire Twins from IllusionOfGaia.
* CruelAndUnusualDeath: [[spoiler: Beruga gets carved up by a propeller.]]
* CuteMute: [[spoiler: Lightside Elle, before she regains her memory.]]
* DarkIsNotEvil: [[spoiler: Ark is the dark counterpart to the light world hero, but it's more complicated than that. While Ark and everyone from Crysta are nice and kind people, they were also created specifically to fulfill evil goals. For instance, Ark is a well intentioned kid in good spirits, but he's also destined to revive [[MadScientist Beruga]], which he does.]]
* DarkerAndEdgier: Compared to ''IllusionOfGaia'' and certainly ''SoulBlazer''.
* DecadeDissonance: Justified because most of the development is created during the game, and the ones that weren't are either from before the plane (thus making it hard to share the technology) or from [[spoiler: before the end of the previous world, being property of Beruga]].
** There is also DecadeDissonance ''within a city itself'' -- one of the characters, Perel, is a stereotypical black 90s skateboarder kid. You first meet him in a village that's around the seventeenth or eighteenth century in terms of technological progression.
* DepopulationBomb: [[spoiler: ''Asmodeus'', the virus that devastated the previous generation of humans that Beruga belonged to is the same virus that wipes out *almost* all the people in Neotokio.]] (See ThePlague)
* DevelopersRoom / EasterEgg: You can visit Quintet's offices in Neotokio. One of the developers refers to the game as ''IllusionOfGaia 2''.
* DoomedHometown: Kind of, though the first chapter centers on fixing it again.
** [[spoiler:However, this trope actually happens ''twice'', the second time destroying Crysta for real.]]
* DopplegangerSpin: Used by [[ThatOneBoss Bloody Mary's]] dolls- an inadequate translation meant people not familiar with [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kagome_Kagome the Japanese children's' game it was based on]] would have no idea which target to attack.
* DubNameChange: Averted mostly for the English localization (aside from some location names, and most importantly "Crysta" which was originally Cristalholm in Japanese), but played painfully straight for the rest of the European localizations, which went wild with name changes:
** For starters, Elle was called CÚlina in French, Melina in German, and Naomi in Spanish. The French version changed many more names (For some reason referring to the Elder as Agar, and unlike the Japanese and English versions, referring to Liore with "Anjou", and Freedom with the not-so-subtle "New York"), but still manages to remain an otherwise decent, if not abridged, accurate retelling of the game. Unfortunately not the same thing could be said about the German localization by Carl Moyse, which coupled all of the above (Yomi going by "Fluffy", anyone?) and heavy Woolseyism.
* DummiedOut: The Quintet quiz is inaccessible in all non-Japanese versions, though all versions (besides the English one) still have the text pertaining to that part intact. There is a test room, and a removed building from Suncoast, and unused interiors for Storkholm, and some removed items but that's it.
* EatTheDog: Ark is offended when snowed in with a mountain goat whose avalanche survival plan involves eating her dead husband.
* EngagementChallenge: There is one in Loire, although [[spoiler: it's {{subverted}}; King Henry doesn't care about his "daughter", he just wanted her to regain her memory so that she could tell him where Storkolm's treasure is.]]
* EscortMission: At one point in chapter 2, you have to help Leim do a test that all lions have to do. It's quite frustrating.
* EternalRecurrence: An important plot device. [[spoiler: Not everything would be exactly the same each time, though. It's heavily implied that this is the first instance that Dark Ark got as far as he did (by merging with Light Ark later on, and not just simply being killed once his purpose to restore the world was done), and ''destroyed'' his own creator for a time. Despite being a part of Dark Gaia himself, Dark Ark is not able to be fully controlled by him.]]
* EvilGenius: Dr. Beruga.
* ExpositionFairy: Yomi.
** [[spoiler: ...Who [[SubvertedTrope tries to kill Ark]] the moment [[YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness his duty is complete]].]]
* FissionMailed: [[spoiler: When Dark Ark meets the spirit of his lightside counterpart, he falls over dead. A cutscene later, it's shown that they were both reincarnated together as the same child.]] This also happens when [[spoiler: Beruga kills Ark after being released]].
* FlashbackNightmare: [[spoiler: Fyda]] has one in Yunkou.
* ForcedLevelGrinding: Mostly because gaining levels increases your power exponentially, and when you're even slightly under-leveled, you won't be able to deal more than a scratch with each hit. Even against common {{Mooks}}.
* ForDoomTheBellTolls: In two tracks, ''Setting Off On A Journey'' (the Underworld theme) and ''Wandering Spirits'' (the "creepy" theme).
* {{Foreshadowing}}: In the beginning, talk to the kid near the pond in Crysta. If you are GenreSavvy, you just know it will be important, only not [[TearJerker how much]]...
* FreudianExcuse: Meilin never wanted to accept the fact that Louran was destroyed and her parents were dead so she made an illusion around her old home and hid there while constantly obstructing her grandfather, Meihou, from finding the town. She becomes vengefully hostile towards Ark for breaking the illusion and forcing her to leave Louran for good.
* GhostTown: Louran.
* GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere: In typical Quintet fashion, almost all the bosses are these. The only aversions are the parasite plaguing the Ra Tree, the FinalBoss.
* AGodAmI:
** Spirit journey Elle.
** Ark himself is a heroic example.
* AGodIAmNot
* AGodIsYou: [[spoiler: According to Yomi, Ark is what humans would call a god.]]
* GoodBadTranslation: The somewhat good translation begins to fall apart near the end of the game, and it's debatable whether it completely shatters or [[SoBadItsGood magically redeems itself]] with Beruga's infamous "I thank you for arousing me" line.
* GoryDiscretionShot: Every time someone dies, the screen just turns black and, at most, flashes red. Which is surprising, considering how often this trope was averted in ''IllusionOfGaia''.
* GuideDangIt:
** In Yunkou, a sidequest requires you to cross all the way back through the Taklama desert and give a flower to the mute girl in the nomads' camp. In fairness, the game ''does'' tell you that flowers will cheer up a mute girl. Unfortunately, there are also red herrings clouding the issue. The mute girl in the nomads' camp? Not the only mute girl in the game. [[spoiler: Earlier in the plot, there is a mute princess in the castle that you were told to fix. The flower doesn't work on ''her''.]]
** Due to ForcedLevelGrinding mentioned above, most people seem to think that you're meant to gain a good 5-10 levels before fighting ThatOneBoss Bloody Mary to be able to do more than single-digit damage to her. However, what you're meant to do is to use your various spell-casting rings to deplete most of her HP. The only problem is that you're only allowed to use them against specific bosses, the game never tells you which ones and it's easy to forget that it's even an option. An alternate solution is to equip a weaker Light-elemental weapon since she's weak to it, but seeing that this is one of the only points in the game where doing so is a smart idea, good luck figuring that out as well.
** The FinalBoss only becomes vulnerable if you turn your back to it. The game does not give you any hints to this.
* HappyEndingOverride: Ark wonders what he was fighting for [[spoiler: after he gets "killed" by the man he was told to resurrect]], and in the ending [[spoiler: upon realizing that he has been fighting for a world he was never a part of]].
* HeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler: Royd, following Meilin's temporary FaceHeelTurn, in Dragoon Castle]].
* HeroicSacrifice: [[spoiler: Elle. Possibly Royd, Fyda, and Ark, as well.]]
* HideYourChildren: Averted with the [[spoiler: zombie children in Louran]].
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: [[spoiler: Beruga gets sucked into a propeller of his ship, in his KarmicDeath.]]
* HoldingOutForAHero: The entire ''world'' does this, requiring a hero to restore the continents and further human evolution.
* HollowWorld: The game starts out in one before you head to the world.
* HumanPopsicle: [[spoiler: Beruga, and the humans who he has granted immortality.]]
* HumansAreBastards: If you return to Evergreen after resurrecting humanity, you will notice that it has taken a change for the worse. Also, if you expand Suncoast (Australia), the animals you helped earlier will be captured and put in a zoo.
* IJustWantToBeNormal: [[spoiler: "''What happened to my carefree days in Crysta? Someone give me those days back!''"]]
* ImAHumanitarian: One goat in chapter 2 doesn't think anything of eating her dead husband.
* ImmortalHero: [[spoiler: Ark seems to die three times in the game, only to be brought back, generically. This only makes his "death" ''after the defeat of the final boss'' all the more moving.]]
* ImpassableDesert: The Taklama desert cannot be crossed without first getting directions from the nomads. Even if you know the way from previous playthroughs, you'll still get kicked out if you haven't cleared the desert town.
** Directions for crossing East-to-West: hard to remember, and will always need to be adhered to no matter how late in the game it is. Directions for crossing West-to-East: [[TheComputerIsACheatingBastard Walk East for 10 seconds.]]
* ImprovisedWeapon: A lot of things Ark gets his hands on could be used as spears or rods. Even spiky plant branches.
* InnSecurity: Every time you get a free night at the inn, expect something relevant to the plot to happen.
* InterfaceScrew: The Confused status ailment that randomly rotates your directional controls either 90 or 180 degrees. [[UpToEleven Taken further]], in that every time the game reminds you that you're confused, the controls are re-randomized.
* InvulnerableCivilians: About all you can do is bean folks with thrown pots.
* InsurmountableWaistHighFence: A few particularly infuriating cases.
* KilledOffscreen: The drop in Metal Prices confirms that Wong, who was constantly buying up all available stock, was killed [[spoiler: by Royd]].
* LawyerFriendlyCameo: A lot of famous people appear in the game with different names. Sven Hedin and Christopher Columbus are two examples.
* {{Leitmotif}}: Characters with their own theme songs include Yomi, Elle, Leim, Royd, Fyda, Perel and Beruga.
* LostForever: A bunch of the civilization growth bonuses should you elect [[spoiler: Louis]] as mayor of Loire or lie to Bell about [[spoiler: his girlfriend dumping him]]. Or even if you screw up the construction of the [[ShoutOut Big Mick]].
** You can also miss raising Polynesia and Mu from the ocean in the first chapter.
** There are also numerous magirocks that can be permanently missed if the areas where they are located in get changed.
* LostInTranslation: The localized script tended to shorten the more detailed script and names from the Japanese version due to space constraints and the font not being optimized for English, such as "Sylvain Castle" (which became "Castle"), "Tower of Trials" (which became "Tower"), "Masako's Cabaret" (which became "Cabaret"), [[HurricaneOfPuns "Senjin Ravine"]] or "Ancestors' Ravine" (which became "Canyon"), "Migrating Birds Point" (which became "Stopover"), "Grand Mosque" (localized as "Mosque") and lots and lots of other names. Speech patterns and particles weren't properly translated: The three girls from Freedom used the "ne, ne", and Ark used the "ze" to suit his arrogant character.
** However, among all the jokes and puns lost, the most offending change was by far one that removed a HUGE Foreshadowing: in the Japanese version, Crysta was "Crystalholm", and the "Magirock" was "Prime Blue".
** The Japanese version, [[DevelopersRoom Quintet's building]] (the "General" room) had one NPC that asked you some questions about Quintet games (and whether Luigi has hair underneath his knees) with a Magirock as a reward. He was [[DummiedOut removed from all of the localized versions]], but the text is still present in the French and German versions somehow.
** Neotokio had a certain NPC that said "Sorry! I can't speak English very well!" in both versions, except the Japanese version had him say it in English witten with Hiragana Japanese characters. The joke was lost in the all-caps English variant.
* TheLostWoods: Norfest Forest. Particularly aggravating in that trial and error is a necessity because your pathfinding item only indicates whether you take a correct turn, and there's also a section that's quite dark.
* LoveMakesYouEvil: [[spoiler: The reason Meilin helped Wong was because she had a crush on Ark, who liked Elle instead of her.]]
* MadScientist: Dr. Beruga.
* TheManBehindTheMan: ''So many of them''. [[spoiler: Dark Gaia behind Beruga behind Wong behind King Henry]].
* MasterOfIllusion: Meilin is an uncommon heroic example.
* MeaningfulName: Ark.
** Also Yomi, which means "[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yomi the Underworld]]" in Shinto mythology.
* MercyInvincibility: Barely. Like, half a second. Don't rely on it.
* NeverGotToSayGoodbye: [[spoiler: Meilin, Meihou and Perel. Even though Ark never even thinks about them after leaving them in the switch rooms]].
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: The plot practically revolves around this trope. Hell, the game starts off with you opening Pandora's Box. [[spoiler: But near the end it turns out to be [[SubvertedTrope a subversion]]. In fact, not only have you not broken it, you actually... well, look at the next entry.]]
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: [[spoiler: Apparently, by opening Pandora's Box, you killed Beruga, stopped his evil plan and saved the world, but you learn this right after being tricked into '''[[NiceJobBreakingItHero resurrecting Beruga.]]''']]
* NightmareFuelStationAttendant: Meilin ends up being this several times even in-story with her PsychicPowers to create the illusion of dead people.
* NintendoHard: A few of the bosses are made exponentially more difficult by having CollisionDamage coupled with weird hit detection, an InstantDeathRadius that forces you to use an attack that gives you a few frames of invulnerability with a possibility of getting caught up on the boss and taking massive damage, or has absurd attacks that deal damage faster than you can heal.
** Yet, at the time of its launching, the game was heavily criticised for being far too easy. Go figure.
** Even by today's standards this game is pretty easy. The "few frames of invulnerability" are pretty much the whole attack that you're using almost exclusively because it does the most damage in almost every case. The game just gets difficult if you miss one or two levels and so cause minimal damage. When you come back after 15 minutes of ForcedLevelGrinding most fights are trivial.
* NoExportForYou: The game was only released outside of Japan to Pal territories, likely due to its heavy religious themes, violent deaths and family unfriendly scenes, and various events that are a little too similar to touchy real world issues, which would never had gotten through the US-Nintendo's strict censorship policies at the time. It also didn't help that Enix, who published the previous two games, closed its North American branch at the time so it didn't have a publisher.
** A small theory was that it couldn't have gotten a publisher because it came very ''very'' late in the Super Nintendo's lifespan, (When it was finally released in PAL territories; the Nintendo 64 was only three months away.)
** Ironically, the European English translation was done by Nintendo of America (with Dan Owsen, and Colin Palmer among other being credited for it). The game was announced by Enix America in various magazines for an American release as "Genesis" (which is actually an accurate translation for its Japanese title), but since they closed shop, it was quietly canned.
* NoSneakAttacks: Averted when [[spoiler: The Elder orders Elle to kill the recently reincarnated hero while he's still a newborn]].
** [[spoiler: In a letter, lightside Elle admits to having killed King Henri while he was sleeping upon seeing what he did to her parents and their home. He deserved it.]]
* OmnidisciplinaryScientist: [[spoiler: Dr. Beruga's robot-filled labs and airship are fairly mundane technology once you think about it, though obviously ''really'' expensive equipment. But he is one ''hell'' of a MorallyAmbiguousDoctorate slash EvilutionaryBiologist - he's cracked immortality, resurrection of the dead, and biological weapons so powerful they can kill off ''the entire human race.'']]
* OnlyFatalToAdults: [[spoiler: The only survivor of Neotokio is a little girl ''who saw her own parents disappear before her own eyes''.]]
* OneWingedAngel: The FinalBoss. It's a Quintet game, this is a given.
** [[spoiler: Also the Elder, who transforms into Dark Gaia. Although, in a way, this is actually a ''devolution'' for Dark Gaia, whose normal form is [[EnergyBeing pure lifeforce]].]]
* PhysicalGod: [[spoiler: Ark.]]
* [[PigMan Pig Men]]: Ark fights a Pagan God whose worshipers are a race of bipedal Pigs. They're encountered again in Neotokio and Beruga's Labs/Airship, a clear indication that they've survived remaining hidden from the world and are now in his service.
* PimpedOutDress: The sprite for Bloody Mary.
* PixelHunt: The secret areas on the world map.
* ThePlague: [[spoiler: ''Asmodeus'']] (See DepopulationBomb)
* PlayableEpilogue: [[TearJerker The saddest one ever]].
* PlayingTennisWithTheBoss: The second form of the Dark Morph, which is probably an intentional ShoutOut to TheLegendOfZeldaALinkToThePast. Also, the first form of the FinalBoss, though it's reflected at an angle rather than straight back.
* PlotRelevantAgeUp: Ark.
* ProdigalHero
* PropheciesAreAlwaysRight: [[spoiler: If one believes that Ark doesn't return from his last battle, the prophecy heard from Columbus is true.]]
* RareCandy: There are potions which increase max health, strength, defense, or luck.
* {{Reincarnation}}: Another important plot device.
* ScaryShinyGlasses: Beruga's glasses.
* SceneryPorn: Just look at some of the images of Earth during the resurrections during the first part of the game.
* SchizoTech: Since the game covers some 2,000 years of human and technological evolution over the space of a few (in-game) years, it's hard to avoid this in places. Also leads to DecadeDissonance when some cities advance before others.
* ScienceIsBad: ...[[ZigZaggingTrope Maybe]]. On the one hand, technological and scientific progress helps the people in the game grow and prosper, but on the other hand, one of the primary antagonists is a MadScientist... Perhaps the moral is "some science is good, but too much is bad"?
** It's more like a Positivist view on science, meaning that science is more like a neutral... thing, and that depending on the use people give to it, it can be good (most of those who invented something) or bad (Beruga, hands down).
* SealedGoodInACan: [[spoiler: Ark.]]
* ShootTheShaggyDog: [[spoiler: It turns out that Ark is one of two chosen ones and his quest has merely been to perform his role in turning the cycle of the dual world, by resurrecting one and destroying the other... the exact same role role he fulfilled in his past life, and the one before that, and for an unknown number of cycles. And he'll keep on doing it until the end of time, or until the day the cycle is broken by the defeat of one of the two chosen. And ''every single time'' he will die once his duty is done, because the last step of it is to destroy his own world, himself included.]]
** Subverted; [[spoiler: it may be a ShaggyDogStory to Ark, but it literally means the world to everyone else]].
** In some ways, the [[spoiler: ending itself is one. Sure, it's more of a BittersweetEnding when you take TheStinger into account, but even then, despite everything that he's been fighting for, the world that Ark saved is one he'll never be allowed to be a part of and his precious hometown is nothing more than a gentle illusion that's fated to disappear after one more day allowed to him by the gods as a "reward" for his sacrifice. That's harsh, no matter how you cut it.]]
* ShoutOut: Once Ark resurrects the animals, after showing eukaryotic cells dividing, the game shows [[Disney/TheLionKing the sun rising over the savannah with silhouettes of animals walking]].
* SocialDarwinist: [[spoiler: Dr. Beruga, who only wants those who he deems necessary to exist, as hideous undead.]]
* SpamAttack: Rapidly tapping the attack button will cause Ark to go into a flurry of jabs with his spear.
* SpeaksFluentAnimal: And plant too [[spoiler: , until humans are revived. Well, there are a few you can still talk to - the crow with the hat in Sanctuary speaks Human (it states that it has to, or it won't be able to sell anything!)]].
* SpiritualSuccessor: Of another [[IllusionOfGaia Spiritual Successor]] that was a successor ''to'' a [[SoulBlazer Spiritual Successor]].
* StarCrossedLovers: [[spoiler: Ark and Elle.]]
* TheStinger: [[spoiler: Following Ark's dream of becoming a bird and presumably dying, lightside Elle appears in Storkholm when someone ('''[[OtherStockPhrases or something]]''') knocks on the door; it is widely assumed to be Ark.]] Throughout the years some theories have evolved concerning how this is possible (not counting "it just happened"). They include:
** [[spoiler: The one who knocked the door is the hero from the light world who was separated from Ark and sent back to the light world after defeating Dark Gaia. In the light world Ark lives through him and is reunited with his eternal love. This theory is a bit problematic because unless you believe Ark and the light world hero are two parts of a single person, it means that the love between Ark and darkside Elle was not genuine but a simple copy of the destined love between their duplicates, and a guy you know nothing about gets to be happy]].
** [[spoiler: The dream was real and the bird from it knocked on the door, supported by the fact that right before the stinger, the bird is seen stopping above a forest, and Storkholm is inside a forest. Also, during the stinger you can hear birds squeaking, but that might be because of the early hour. Basically, this means that God reincarnated darkside Ark as a bird so he can live with his loved one...''[[InterspeciesRomance as a bird]]''...]]
* StrawmanPolitical: The DirtyCommunist candidate in the Loire election is ''literally dirty'' - a notorious deadbeat drunkard. Not so much in the moral sense, though. However, [[spoiler: if you vote for him, the town does not evolve.]]
* TacticalSuicideBoss: The Cadet form of the Dark Morph and the first form of the FinalBoss, which both involve PlayingTennisWithTheBoss.
** The second form of [[spoiler: Dark Gaia]] could be considered either this or just plain IdiotBall, as well. It's flying, so you can't hit it unless it comes close to you, which it presumably does to attack you better or...something. You'd think it would wise up to this after the second time you whip around and smack it, though.
* ThreeLawsCompliant: Beruga directly references all three laws, then points out that his robots don't actually follow those, but just obey and protect him.
* ThrivingGhostTown: Louran, a prosperous and thriving town ''in the middle of the desert''...[[spoiler: that turns out to be a mirage over a destroyed village filled with shambling zombies that are the remains of the people that you were talking to yesterday.]]
* ThrowTheDogABone: Played to a ridiculous extent in the ending [[spoiler: as a compensation for Ark's expected death: darkside Ark gets one more day to live in the ilusion that used to be his life before dying. He then dreams one last happy dream about being a bird wandering in the upperworld, watching it as it evolves.]]
** TheStinger.
* TimeSkip: There is actually one in between the resurrection of humankind and your awakening in Lhasa, spanning three years. You are casually informed about this by an NPC. It can be easy to miss.
* TheTokyoFireball: [[spoiler: Dr. Beruga destroys Neotokio once he's released.]]
%%* TomatoInTheMirror
* TooAwesomeToUse: Ironically, ''not'' the magic rings. Magic rings can't be used on (most) bosses, so there's really no reason not to use them recklessly in the dungeons. Rather, it's basic healing items that are too awesome to use. Yes, you're in danger now, but you'll need a lot of healing for the upcoming boss, won't you? So, it is more likely that the player will stock up on Grass Pins to heal, and leave basic mundane healing items for boss encounters.
* TreacherousAdvisor: [[spoiler: The Elder and darkside Yomi.]]
* {{Tsundere}}: Meilin. Verging on {{Yandere}}, but [[CharacterDevelopment gets better]].
* TurbineBlender: [[spoiler: How Dr. Beruga meets his end.]]
* TheUnfought: [[spoiler: Beruga gets killed before you get the chance to fight him]].
* UselessUsefulSpell: The only time you'll use spells is when fighting Bloody Mary, because every other boss fight flat-out ''disables'' your magic [[NoSell for no real reason]]. A shame, because the magic you get is actually pretty darned powerful.
* VideogameGeography - both the underworld and the overworld maps are in fact toroidal. Although in the case of the underworld map, a lava sea prevents you from travelling all the way around in any direction. But yeah, the overworld is completely toroidal, you can get to the South Pole by travelling north from Greenland.
* WasItReallyWorthIt: Ark wonders this [[spoiler: after he gets "killed" by the man he was told to resurrect]], and in the ending [[spoiler: upon realizing that he has been fighting for a world he was never a part of]].
* WaterfallPuke: Ark will spit up a mouthful whenever he takes something bad.
* WhereItAllBegan: [[spoiler: Ark returns to Crysta to defeat Dark Gaia in the last chapter.]]
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: [[spoiler: Ark, who the Elder and Yomi try to kill at the beginning of chapter 4.]]
* YouNoTakeCandle: Every person from Yunkou speaks in Chinglish.