[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/WildArms3_6085.jpg]]

->''My shield is strong,\\
I'll take my chances here and now!\\
Bring on the fight,\\
I'll find a way to win somehow!\\
No tomorrows, no regrets,\\
I'll risk it all for this brand new day!''
-->--'''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezkMLIdE-Kg Advanced Wind]]''', the opening theme sang by Samantha Newark.

''Wild Arms 3'' (released in Japan as ''Wild Arms Advanced 3rd'') is the third game in the ''[[Franchise/WildArms Wild ARMs]]'' DesertPunk {{RPG}} series.

Filgaia is a world [[AfterTheEnd on the brink of collapse]]. Those who roam this wasteland in search of fortune or fame are known as Drifters. To protect themselves, these Drifters equip guns known as [=ARMs=] ([[FunWithAcronyms Artifact from Ruins' Memories]]) that are controlled [[EmpathicWeapon by the will of their wielder]].

On a train, four such Drifters clash over a mysterious artifact known as the Arc Scepter: Virginia Maxwell, a [[NaiveNewcomer greenhorn Drifter]] following in the footsteps of her DisappearedDad; Jet Enduro, an experienced [[IneffectualLoner but cold-hearted]] Drifter with IdentityAmnesia; Gallows Carradine, a [[IdiotHero crass and lazy]] MagicalNativeAmerican running away from his duties to his tribe; and Clive Winslett, a BountyHunter and AdventurerArchaeologist with a cool disposition and a mean sniper rifle.

Soon afterward, they decide to form a [[TrueCompanions team]] ([[MagneticHero with a lot of prodding from Virginia]]) and track down a priceless treasure known as the [[MacGuffin Eternal Sparkle]]. This brings them into conflict with [[TheRival rival Drifter]] Janus Cascade, a SimilarSquad of Drifters called the Schrödinger Family (led by Virginia's {{Foil}}, Maya Schrödinger), and eventually an AncientConspiracy threatening to consume both the past and future of Filgaia.

''Wild [=ARMs=] 3'' gives one the impression that its creators were told to make a JRPG, but had never played a JRPG before. Far from making it a bad game, this means that they approached the genre from a new direction and did a lot to shake up old cliches:

* The main character is a female who wears a very modest and practical dress for the entirety of the game, which by itself is like a subversion apocalypse. Though her naive optimism is picked apart throughout the first half of the game, instead of discarding her ideals she matures them instead into something practical yet still optimistic.
* Magic doesn't expend MP; rather, each character has a "Force Gauge" that builds as they attack, with spells becoming accessible when it reaches a certain level.
* Characters don't buy new weapons: they upgrade and customize their existing ones.
* You can't buy healing items. Since Filgaia is a wasteland and all the healing items are fruit, healing items are incredibly rare, forcing you to rely on healing spells in battle and a limited Vitality Gauge, which will keep your health topped up for a time. You later get the ability to grow your own healing items, but just like real gardening it's a long and patient process.
* You can use an item to rename almost any NPC or ability in the game.
* You can't see items or places on the world map automatically. Instead, you have to search for them using a radar-like ping. This includes towns and dungeons.
* Although there are random encounters, there's a "migrant seal" system which allows you to skip encounters if you wish, or even bypass them entirely if [[CurbStompBattle you're overleveled]].

An interesting tidbit - this game was the first not to be localized by Sony. Squaresoft, of ''Franchise/FinalFantasy'' fame, performed the localization process, which was noticeably of much higher quality than the {{Blind Idiot Translation}}s of the first two. Unfortunately, this also created some continuity errors with certain names that were intended to be references to the first two games. Future entries were handled by XSEED (and in [[VideoGameRemake one]] [[VideoGame/WildArms1 case]], [[BlindIdiotTranslation Agetec]]).

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!!This game provides examples of:

* AfterTheEnd: Filgaia was turned into a desert wasteland by a cataclysmic event [[spoiler:that actually only happened about ten years ago, but also erased everyone's memory of it happening, so they think it was in the distant past]].
* AllMythsAreTrue: ''Every'' piece of Filgaia lore is both accurate ''and'' [[{{Foreshadowing}} relevant]] to the events of the game.
* AlmightyJanitor: The BonusBoss Bad News.
* AlwaysClose
* ArmorPiercingSlap: Virginia gets this treatment not only once but twice. First by her uncle, who slaps her because she tried to be a hero and could easily got herself killed (well, rushing in a dungeon filled with goblin smugglers, all alone at level 1, isn't the brightest idea, especially when you're TheChick). The second time by Maya, a Drifter like her (but way more experienced), who gives her a WhatTheHellHero speech after Virginia tried to pursue the antagonists and nearly got herself killed, save for the intervention of her comrade Jet, who she completely ignored while he just saved her life. She quickly realized how naive and stupid she acted this time, thanks to Maya's speech.
** And there's the time where Virginia slaps [[spoiler:''Maya'']]...only to see [[spoiler:that she blocked the slap with her arm. Then Virginia forces and reach Maya's cheek.]]
* AwesomeMcCoolname: Gallows Carradine. Honestly, the Wild [=ARMs=] series is in love with this trope.
* BagOfSharing: Especially ridiculous in the prologue, which shares items between characters ''who haven't even met yet'', with the items traveling ''back in time'' if you choose to play the four prologues out of chronological order. One of the few outright weird FridgeLogic moments in the game.
* {{BFG}}: The gun mounted on the sandcraft, which can do a ''million'' points of damage in a single attack.
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler: While Siegfried and Beatrice are both defeated, Filgaia is still a wasteland. The leader of Filgaia's most prominent religion is dead, and the heroes are blamed for his death. On the other hand, the party isn't too broken up about it, and the ending sends the player off with an uplifting feeling; after all, it's not like people haven't tried to kill them before. The last thing we see is that HopeSpringsEternal.]]
* BlockPuzzle: The Millennium Puzzles. No, [[Anime/YuGiOh not that one]].
* BolivianArmyEnding: [[spoiler:Subverted during TheStinger, as the heroes are shown to have come out alive and unharmed, though everyone thinks they killed the guy who headed Filgaia's biggest religion.]]
* BrutalBonusLevel: One hundred floors. No save points whatsoever. BonusBoss from hell, Ragu O Ragla, waiting for you at the end. You have to fight him twice. In. A. Row. And he is even stronger the second time around. Have fun!
* CartographySidequest: Completing the entire map nets you a nice bonus.
* {{Catchphrase}}: Janus is "just trying to do things efficiently."
* ChekhovsGunman: One in particular stands out, spanning the ''entire damn game.'' [[spoiler: Beatrice, the final boss, shows up in the [[StealthHiBye first ten minutes]], and repeatedly shows up for small portions of cutscenes throughout the game as an almost unnoticeable side character until she reveals herself as the Woman behind the Man who was behind 3 People who were behind One Man. Yes.]]
** On the slightly saner level, [[spoiler:the statue that is Asgard, Janus' ability to split his body into multiple forms, the four extra shrines at the Southern Temple, and Hyades. There's a bit going on in this game.]]
* CoolSword: The Dark Spear. Which is [[{{Expy}} totally not]] [[SoulCalibur Soul Edge]].
* CrewOfOne: Subverted, the sandcraft requires four crew members to be used, each in different jobs roughly corresponding to actual ship jobs- Helmsman, Gunner, etc.
* CyberneticsEatYourSoul" The Metal Demons are a weird version of this; it's stated pretty clearly that it was ''after'' they became monsters that they took up cybernetics, but averted in the case of the heroes [=ARMs=], which are stated to be usable only because of the everpresent nanobots in soil, air and the heroes themselves.
* {{Cyborg}}: The demons and the dragons of the [[HollywoodStyle Hollywood variety.]]
* DarkerAndEdgier: It's a toss-up between ''VideoGame/WildArms2'' and 3 as to which is the bleakest game in the series.
* DeathWorld: The state of Filgaia in this game is the absolute lowest in the entire series.
* DiscOneFinalBoss: Happens several times, actually; Virginia and her team fight what appears to be their ultimate nemesis and defeat him/them only to find an even bigger threat looming on the horizon. Interestingly, the intro movie continues to change throughout the game to reflect this. The game feels very much like several seasons of a multi-arc anime because of this.
* TheDogWasTheMastermind: [[spoiler:Beatrice, the purple-haired little girl.]]
* EvilLaugh: Once the antagonists (with the exception of the ''really'' dangerous ones) begin to lose it, you will hear them laughing out loud like mad men quite often.
* EvolvingCredits: Another series tradition. The "outro" for when you quit the game after saving shows a beautiful scene, with a sung score, detailing the party's level, stats, and equipment as scenes of Virginia's life slowly drift by.
** Also, uniquely, the game has Evolving ''Intros''- the anime opening sequence that plays when you load your save changes depending on storyline changes- villains come and go, major scenes get resolved, etc.
* EvolutionaryLevels: Used repeatedly [[spoiler:The final boss goes through ten stages of evolution]].
* {{Expy}}: Maya is an expy of Jane from the first game. Not only are they alike in appearance and personality, they serve as the rival for the resident lead female (romantic for Cecelia, professional for Virginia). Though, its Virginia who takes Jane's surname. [[spoiler: [[JustifiedTrope This makes sense]], since Maya is actually using her power to become any character from a book to ''literally'' be Calamity Jane in appearance, personality, and abilities.]]
* {{Foreshadowing}}: ''Everything'' is foreshadowed. Most of it is obvious, but you'll probably overlook [[spoiler:Shane's explanation of his prophetic dreams, which summarizes the entire plot and is the first mention of Beatrice. Since this dream ''came'' from Beatrice in the first place, it's the first part of her GambitRoulette]].
* ForTheCelOfIt: One of the earlier examples of cel-shading on the PS2, and highly successful; the look merges well with the Wild West aesthetic.
* FourTemperamentEnsemble
** Virginia - Choleric
** Clive - Phlegmatic
** Jet - Melancholic
** Gallows - Sanguine
** The Schrodinger Gang applies this trope as well in a hauntingly similar manner.
*** Maya - Choleric
*** Alfred - Phlegmatic
*** Todd - Melancholic
*** Shady - Sanguine
* FreeRotatingCamera
* GambitPileup: By the end of the game there are multiple spanners, chess masters, and gambits of all kinds, from Batman to Roulettes, piled up in a giant convoluted mess.
* GatlingGood: Maya Schrodinger has one. Mentioned less for the weapon and more for her...''[[TrouserSpace interesting]]'' means of carrying it.
** Also, a [[LimitBreak Force Ability]] is named "Gatling", allowing you to perform a barrage of regular attacks.
* GuideDangIt: The game never actually tells you how Finest Arts works. Since it's a GameBreaker, this may or may not be deliberate.
** The Dark Luceid arcana is a great spell... that is, as long as you know how it works. Nothing in the game tells you, of course. The big secret is that it's damage is affected by the elemental affinities of the target(s), losing power for each weakness, but gaining power if resist it at all (and of course, the greater the resistance, the greater the boost). It'll do next to no damage (or no damage period) on most enemies, since a good chunk of the bestiary has at least one weakness, but for the monsters that resist, nullify, or absorb multiple elements? They will break down and CRY if they see you cast this.
* TheGunslinger: Unlike previous ''Wild [=ARMs=]'' games, which mixed swords and fantasy weapons together, pretty much everyone uses a gun. Everyone in your party wields a different type of gun.
** This fact leads to a ''[[CrowningMomentOfFunny hysterical]]'' scene. The party is opposed by villainous Huskarls, a group of knights [[TooDumbToLive equipped solely with swords]]. The party is ''flabbergasted'' that someone would be using a sword in this day and age. When the party [[CurbStompBattle kills them deader than disco]], the guy who sent the Huskarls after the party freely admits that he thought they'd all get killed, using swords like that.
* HeroesPreferSwords: Not in this game, making it one of the few [[{{JRPG}} JRPGs]] that ''averts'' this trope. Not even the other [=Wild ARMs=] games can claim this. There's even a joke about enemies [[TakeThat coming at them with swords and being totally ineffectual]].
* HighAltitudeBattle: Battling with Lombardia produces this- while you pilot a giant doom dragon jet Transformer thing. Awesome!
* [[spoiler: HijackedByGanon: Siegfried was TheDragon and later the BigBad in the first ''VideoGame/{{Wild ARMS|1}}'' and is the "Ganon" to the new villains the Prophets.]]
** [[spoiler:And he in turn is hijacked by Beatrice.]]
* HopeSproutsEternal: The last shot of the game [[spoiler:is of a white flower blooming in Little Twister.]]
* InGameNovel: A FanFic of ''VideoGame/WildArms2'', no less, starring Marivel and space flight. Clive reads it to his daughter as a father/daughter bonding moment, and it's [[CrowningMomentofHeartwarming adorable]].
* InterestingSituationDuel: The first time you get to control all four characters against Janus and his gang is on top of a train in a dark and stormy night.
* ItWasADarkAndStormyNight: These words exactly open the game. Virginia even lampshades it.
-->"It sure was a stormy night..."
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Maya may seem harsh, but besides the obvious motivation of wanting to get rid of other Drifter competitors, she does have a sweet spot for Virginia, protecting her in her own way (and literally saving the party's life at least once). Lampshaded by her own brother, Alfred.
-->"My sister's a little... you know... She comes off as crass, but she's trying her hardest to be nice."
* LastLousyPoint: The Black Box, which requires you to open every single other treasure chest in the world.
* LeyLine: And an observatory to investigate it.
* LongTitle: One song in the soundtrack is called "The Weight Of A Heavy Life, The [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment Meaning Of The Meaning Of Life]]".
* LostForever: Didn't trigger the events to begin the Telepath Tower sidequest in time? Too bad, no EX File Key for you!
* LostTechnology: The Council of Seven was founded to try and revive it, and the one major religion on Filgaia (the Order of the Ark of Destiny) is essentially dedicated to it (even having their headquarters in a millenia-old GenerationShip!).
* TheManBehindTheMan: ''[[UpToEleven Multiple]]'' [[UpToEleven times]]: First there is [[spoiler:The Prophets]] behind Janus, and [[spoiler:Siegfried]] behind [[spoiler:The Prophets]]. Then there is [[spoiler:Beatrice]] behind [[spoiler:''YOU'']].
* TheMaze: The final dungeon and [[BonusLevel the Abyss]] are both like this.
* [[MeddlingParents Meddling Grandmother]]: Late during the second act, just before going to the last shrine, Halle, Gallows's grandma, outright reveals to her grandson that she had an hidden agenda, and that she intentionally orchestrated the events of the game's beginning, in which she succeeded to bring back home Gallows, and set him up on the rails of his quest and duties (which he ran away from at the beginning of the game).
* MegaManning: [[spoiler:Maya Schrodinger]] can do this by reading comic books.
* MexicanStandoff: The "Select a Character" screen is a stand-off between the main characters, and you play through their backstories before the stand-off gets resolved.
* MonsterArena: Gunner's Heaven.
* NewGamePlus: The EX File Keys, which require doing some ''insane'' side quests, are used in a New Game Plus to unlock things. Good luck getting them all.[[labelnote:*]] you only need two to unlock the New Game Plus.[[/labelnote]]
* NoHoldsBarredBeatdown: An direct allusion to this trope by Maya Schrödinger, who says this to Virginia immediately after saving her and her party from Asgard (who '''did''' OHKO them) : "I, Maya Schrödinger, will crush you to the ground, no holds barred. Just remember that."
* NoHuggingNoKissing: It's one of the very few PS2 [[{{JRPG}} JRPGs]] that ''doesn't'' have a romantic subplot.
* OneHundredPercentCompletion: This game ''thrives'' on this. A good way to tell how you're doing is to check how many EX.Keys you've picked up.
* OneWingedAngel: The final boss has ''[[UpToEleven ten freaking forms]]''.
** Also, [[spoiler:Siegfried gives the Prophets powerful new Demon forms.]]
** [[spoiler:Janus]] was also given a demon form.
* OutsideTheBoxTactic: It's possible to defeat the sub-boss Gespent in one turn by using the ''Requiem'' spell.
* PapaWolf: Virginia's father is pretty much absent, but if you [[TemptingFate dare hurt her]], Papa will come to the rescue.
* PlotCouponThatDoesSomething: The Tear Drop (yet another reference to the first game) can be used with [[ItemCaddy Mystic]] for some decent healing.
* PornStash: You get to ''[[CrowningMomentOfFunny fight one]]''.
* PowersAsPrograms: The Mediums explicitly work like this.
* PuzzleBoss: A ''lot''. Around half the game's bosses require either a specific strategy to defeat, or have their difficulty level go through the roof if you don't use it (Trask being the key example).
* TheReasonYouSuckSpeech: Clive to Melody in Yggdrasil, about the concept of external and inner beauty.
* RoswellThatEndsWell: An NPC named Roswell sends you on a sidequest for flying saucers. Yes.
* SandIsWater: The oceans are, quite literally, ''sand''. Giant sea monsters live in it, and you have to drive a boat out to fight them. [[ItMakesSenseInContext Don't ask]].
* SarcasticClapping: Janus does this to Virginia after she gives him yet ''another'' gallant and long-winded speech. Virginia gets ''furious''.
* SaveToken: Gimel Coins, which can be used to save your game at any time you're not in battle, in addition to town-only {{Save Point}}s. Gimel Coins allow you to save anywhere, but were not sold in shops. Whatever you found in chests or from the exceptionally [[RandomlyDrops rare drops]] were all you got for the entire game.
* SchizoTech: Fantasy and Wild West Tech, as is common to the series. However, in this game, the latter is played up far more prominently, with the fantasy elements almost removed, arguably improving the game by forcing it to focus on what was unique in Wild [=ARMs=] in the first place.
* SdrawkcabName: [[{{Tremors}} Diobarg]].
* SelfDuplication: Janus Cascade revealed his ability to make duplicate bodies of himself, [[spoiler: in an attempt [[{{Faking the Dead}} to escape death by the protagonist party]]. Unfortunately for him, [[{{Final Death}} he perished for good shortly thereafter.]]]]
* SensitiveGuyAndManlyMan: Shane and Gallows, respectively.
* SequentialBoss: The final boss takes this trope [[UpToEleven much further than most ever do]]: it has ''ten'' forms.
* ShiftingSandLand: The ''whole world'' is like this.
* ShoutOut: Oh so many, even by Wild Arms standards. Not only do many elements from VideoGame/WildArms1 hover in a grey area between {{Expy}} and straight reappearance, but monsters and locations have a remarkable tendency to reference myth, folklore, and pop culture in one way or another. NorseMythology and ''Theatre/TheRingCycle'' get a particular emphasis, from Siegfried to Yggdrasil to [[spoiler:Virginia's father and his remarkable resemblance to Odin's mortal disguise]].
** When Shady, the cat of Maya's group, is trapped, he yells "No more walls !" Add this to the fact that in battle he only has two attacks, with 50% of chances of using each one. And that Maya's family is named "Schrödinger." And that said family's ancestors made Shady completely claustrophobic. [[UsefulNotes/SchrodingersCat Poor Schrödinger's cat]].
** The original name of Little Twister, Titty Twister, is a ShoutOut to ''Film/FromDuskTillDawn''.
* SneezeCut: During the third act, Virginia is looking for a gem, and somehow thinks about Maya... Cue a change of scene with Maya sneezing.
* SuperpoweredEvilSide: Janus gets a dose of TheDarkSide, and later [[spoiler:The Prophets]] get one too.
* TheTeam: A massive aversion of the typical version. TheChick is also TheLeader, TheLancer is the ''actual'' [[TheHeart emotional center]], that TheBigGuy is the best mage in the party with the worst melee attacks, and TheSmartGuy is a MightyGlacier with a sniper rifle. It gets to where one suspects the party's design is an intentional complex {{Deconstruction}} of the usual personality-to-party-role stereotypes in your average RPG.
* TookAShortcut: Martina, an unarmed NPC little girl, somehow travels the world without the use of a horse, sandcraft, or aircraft. Lampshaded several times by the party wondering how the hell she gets to the places she does.
** Clive also does this in his prologue, since his starter dungeon can only be reached by air.
* TrainJob: The introduction of the game begins with all four party characters meeting each other performing the ''same'' train job... and interfering with some villains who have ''also'' come to perform the same train job. It was a very busy train that night.
* TraintopBattle: During the aforementioned TrainJob Pileup, you battle Janus and his boys atop the train.
* TrueCompanions: Virginia declares herself and the three men to be one of these. While initially, the three men find it funny and decide to play along, CharacterDevelopment slowly [[BecomingTheMask turns the whole group into the real thing]].
* ViceCity: Little Twister.
* VisualInitiativeQueue: When fighting in the sandcraft.
* WorldTree: The Yggdrasil System.
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