Arcanus Cella is a world of mystery, existing in [[AnotherDimension a universe parallel to our own]]. Is rumored to be a land full of great treasures, powerful monsters, and wishes granted beyond one's wildest dreams.

Two young would-be heroes, Pudding and her childhood friend Souma, stumble upon this mystical place when exploring a mansion one night. Landing in an idyllic village with none to disturb them except for the sorceress Despina, they desperately search to find a way out of Arcanus Cella and back to their homeworld. Could it be through the unassuming tree in the southeast corner? Or past the creepy-looking door on the north side of town? And why are all of these other strangers gathering in this place all of a sudden?

Such is the tale behind ''[=ClaDun=][[note]]portmanteau of "classic dungeon"[[/note]]: This is an RPG!'', a downloadable dungeon-crawling ActionRPG released for the [[UsefulNotes/PlayStationPortable PSP]] in 2010 by Creator/NipponIchi. The goal of the game is to fight your way through the dungeons, avoiding traps and defeating enemies in search of the exit. You control a single character, but through the use of the game's "Magic Circle" system, other characters can join you to protect you from harm, while also giving you a boost in strength.

A sequel, ''[=ClaDun=] X2'', was released late August 2011 in the U.S., taking the editing UpToEleven with editable weapons, armor, animations, and even background music. The sequel also introduced new characters and new classes, such as a long range archer class. Now on [[http://www.nisamerica.com/index.php?nav=n&article=pbomb/PrinnyBomb_Vol257.html Steam]].

A third entry, titled ''[=ClaDun=] Returns: This is Sengoku!'', was released for the UsefulNotes/PSVita and Steam on May 27, 2016 in Japan and June 6th, 2017 worldwide. Set during the Sengoku era of Japanese history, ''Sengoku'' will have players traversing the danger-filled dungeons of feudal-era Arcanus Cella to save lost souls who have yet to reincarnate into the real world. In addition to all of the features introduced in ''x2'', ''Sengoku'' adds new classes, the Shuriken and Sickle weapon types, a new Ran-geon type, and multiplayer features.

The same teams would go on to release a SpiritualSuccessor in the UsefulNotes/PlayStationNetwork-exclusive ''VideoGame/{{Legasista}}'' in 2012.
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! These are Tropes!
* AbnormalAmmo: It's easily possible in the second game to modify the arrows that bows fire into virtually anything you could think of.
* ActionGirl: Pudding, Sunday
* AdvancingBossOfDoom: Immortals in Cladun x2, though they aren't bosses and can't be killed except through some obscure methods, making fights against them boil down to 'who can run the fastest?'
* AffablyEvil: Even after his [[TheMole reveal]], [[spoiler: Parchmin]] never loses that weird accent and carefree attitude.
* TheAlcatraz: Cladun x2's version of Arcanus Cella is more or less a high-security prison ''in the form of a pocket dimension.''
* AmplifierArtifact: The rare Widen artifact, which placed on any tile, doubles the effect ([[RequiredSecondaryPowers and unfortunately, the mana cost as well]]) of all artifacts further down the chain. In ''X2'', placing it on an ability tile amplifies the effect of the skill instead (such as the area of effect, number of projectiles, etc).
* AnimeThemeSong: Quite unfittingly, each game in the series has a vocal theme song that plays on the title screen as long as the game is set to Modern music; ''x2'', for example, featured Kanae Ito's "Call of the Dungeon" on the main menu.
* AnachronismStew: Arcanus Cella is a backwater dimension filled with various mythical creatures that seems suspended in medieval stasis... except there are working showers, plumbing devices, interdimensional telephones, and slang that never existed till the 1990s. One can take this one step further by adding guns and cyborgs into the game, though that relies on the player more than anything else.
* AndTheAdventureContinues: ''Sengoku'' ends with [[spoiler:Yukimura disappearing, taking the Book with him. The party decides to set out again to track down Yukimura and recover the Book.]]
* AntiFrustrationFeatures:
** Dark Gates (Doom Gates from ''x2'') in ''Sengoku'' are made significantly easier; while they still function like they did in ''x2'', they no longer have Trap properties and are now completely visible regardless of whether or not you're near them, which makes avoiding them several times easier. There is an option in the Options menu to disable this if you want the ''x2'' mechanic back, though.
** The Lucky Seven Magic Circle is made much easier to obtain in ''Sengoku''. Once you hit 700 Fame, you'll unlock a Shady Shop item that locks the Ran-geon enemy level to Lv. 777, which guarantees that you will get the Magic Circle as long as you complete the Ran-geon. Appropriately, the item is called "Lucky Seven".
* AntiVillain: [[spoiler:Enma]] in ''Sengoku''. [[spoiler:Sure, she wants to kill humanity, but only because she was getting fed up having to judge every single human soul that gets sent to Hell, which is to say, a lot. [[GracefulLoser She's not particularly upset about being defeated by you, either.]]]]
* AwesomeButImpractical: Sorcery in ''x2'' and Hexes in ''Sengoku'' are among the strongest kind of Magic in the game, but [[SuperpowerMeltdown it has a high chance of backfiring]] and you have to dump up to four "dummy" charges before the spell will actually start working; not only does this chew through your SP at a ridiculous rate, the pre-cast charges can ''also'' backfire. There are Artifacts that can reduce the number of dummy casts you have to burn and the rate of failure, but they're rather difficult to find.
* BackFromTheDead: Don't like that a character in the story died? [[GameplayAndStorySegregation Remake them]] as a [[PlayerMooks Player Mook]]!
* BadassCape: Parchmin's... rather impressive-looking cape. This is also an option to use with PlayerMooks in Cladun x2.
* BalanceBuff: ''Sengoku'' tweaked the Ninja and Saint classes; Ninja's Job Skill in ''x2'' is replaced with a new skill called Boss Killer, which gives a massive damage bonus to boss-type enemies, and the Saint's Undead Slayer skill had its effect ''doubled'' to 100% Undead kill chance at Lv. 5.
* BalefulPolymorph: [[spoiler: Widder in Cladun x2, by being on the wrong side of a FreakyFridayFlip.]]
* BigBadFriend: [[spoiler: Parchmin in Cladun x2, the guy with the red-and-black cape who goads you into killing monsters. Despite his impressive EvilPlan, however, he is not ObfuscatingStupidity.]]
* BigBoosHaunt: The graveyard levels and to a lesser extent the Madness Pantheon in Cladun x2.
* BloodKnight: [[spoiler: Death Glutton, post-character development. He lost his love for destruction and death, but his love for battle was truly his, making him virtually a living example of a ''Franchise/{{Disgaea}}'' demon and continuing the tradition of demons being [[NobleDemon Noble Demons.]]]]
* BodySurf: [[spoiler: Parchmin spends the majority of Cladun x2 in Widder's actual body, posing as the Administrator of Arcanus Cella.]]
* BoobyTrap: Every single dungeon in the game, period. If you manage to find even one floor with absolutely no traps that isn't a boss area, you are an incredibly lonely soul.
* BonusBoss: In Cladun x2 you can face different versions of the final boss with varying strength after you've beaten him, ranging from level 1000 to level 9999.
** The BigBad from Cladun also returns, only suddenly having surged to level 999. The game notes that they've done a "lot of preparation."
* BleakLevel: The Madness Pantheon in Cladun x2.
* BonusDungeon: Rangeons, Trigeons, and Neogeons - subverted in that you can usually begin to foray into them very early on, it just gets easier later and you can go much, much deeper than you could at first.
* BonusLevel: The Bonus Area, a special Rangeon area that only shows up on floor 77 in Cladun x2.
* BoringButPractical: In general, it's much easier to use weapons instead of spells to attack, since they tend to be much less SP-intensive, and an insanely powerful nuke spell isn't going to do much if you can't cast it.
* BraggingRightsReward: The ultimate Magic Circle, God Excess, in Cladun x2. On one hand, it's on a general scale better than almost every other Magic Circle in the entire game, bar none. On the other, you have to defeat a whole Rangeon and end the dungeon level at level 9999 to get it, and that's by far one of the hardest challenges in the game anyways, making the reward more symbolic than anything.
* BrilliantButLazy: Mouton.
** Double-subverted when he [[spoiler: joins the party]]: he calls himself out on much of his information being completely wrong, but later on a significant chunk of his information (and the info that mattered) is vindicated and proven to be correct.
* BrutalBonusLevel:
** The Time Attack dungeon. The higher up floors of Ran-geons can also approach this. And don't even get started on Doom Gates in ''x2''...
** Death-geons in ''Sengoku'' laugh at regular Ran-geons and spit in their drinks before they serve them. While only 10 Floors, every enemy has a base level of '''Level 500'''[[note]]which can be increased to '''''Level 9999''''' if you purchase the appropriate Shady Shop item enough times[[/note]], every single floor is laden with traps, most of which (like the new Death and Hunger Traps) will immediately kill a character on your team, and powerful DegradedBoss monsters and Owls run rampant, alongside the usual Immortals. They're also a TimedMission in which you have to reach a Gate or Exit within 3 minutes per floor in order to keep going and not lose your items. However, unlike regular Ran-geons, you can die and revive an infinite number of times, and Hell Gates have somewhat backwards functionality in that while they can potentially raise the monster level by a huge value, they can also jack up your Rare Item and Rare Title rate by '''several hundred points.'''
** You wouldn't think a place with the name like "Bath-geon" would qualify, but it does, oh so much. Enemies start at Lv. 100 and ''increase by 100 Levels'' every floor. The entire place is infested with Immortals, which actually become a gameplay mechanic, as 2F onwards requires you to lead the Immortals around to hit switches behind impassable barriers. And if you think you can waltz in with a weapon with four Punish Titles, think again; the Bath-geon has the Mu-geon gimmick, in that it blocks all Title and Wall Stone effects. Good luck!
* TheCameo: It's a Nippon Ichi game where anyone can be made a "main character", so of course [[spoiler: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhILaDauHRQ Asagi]]]] shows up.
** The game is built to allow this, as well, given the incredible versatility of the editing system, meaning that you can probably put anyone vaguely human into the game if you try hard enough.
* {{Cap}}: 999 on HP, ATK, DEF, and SP. There are Titles that will let you break the cap, but these are typically exceedingly rare and can only be found on the higher-level Ran-geon floors.
* ChestMonster: Mimics, of course. Bonus points for them being even more populous than ''actual'' treasure chests in Transitory.
* ClingyMacGuffin: The mask found by Pudding that just won't go away, no matter how many times Despina and others try to get rid of it. Later on, [[TheImp it starts talking...]]
* CameBackWrong: When Despina uses magic to raise Coco from the dead, he ends turning into a zombie. This ends up being merely a cosmetic change that has no effect on his personality or his gameplay stats.
* CastFromHP: The Crossfire Title gives you a big +10 bonus to ATK, but whenever you strike, 5% of the damage you inflict is dealt as self-inflicted damage.
* ClassicVideoGameScrewYous:
** Enemies that can move through walls (Immortals)
** Complete absence of MercyInvincibility
** CharacterSelectForcing, especially on the graveyard levels, with a Saint
** Flying backwards after getting hit
** Rarely, when entering a lower-level floor an Immortal will spawn directly on top of the player
** InvisibleMonsters (ghosts)
** SpikesOfDoom ''everywhere''
* CoOpMultiplayer: One of ''Sengoku''[='=]s new major features is a multiplayer feature. In the co-op mode, you can join your friends with ad-hoc multiplayer ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter''-style and tackle dungeons as a group.
* CompetitiveBalance: In order to keep the PlayerVersusPlayer in ''Sengoku'' in check, players are unable to use their own characters for the mode, and are restricted exclusively to Lords you pick up in EX Stages. You also cannot edit their Magic Circles. However, Levels are carried over.
* CosmicPlaything: Coco, by his own admission, seems to have the worst luck in the world.
* CripplingOverspecialization: The infamous Divine Excess/Better than Buddha Magic Circle in ''x2'' and ''Sengoku''. You can boost one character's Mana pool by '''9x''', which gives you a ton of room to slot in very powerful Artifacts and Widens. However, it only affords one character, and blocks healing outside of Angel Gate heals, so if your one Sub/Vassal falls, you're utterly screwed.
* DangerousForbiddenTechnique:
** Sorcery in Cladun x2. Justified in that it's AwesomeButImpractical and can be ''very'' harmful to the wielder themselves.
** Hexes in ''Sengoku'' are the game's replacement for Sorcery, and functions in exactly the same way.
* DeathIsASlapOnTheWrist: Usually. Unless you're carrying any valuable items.
* DeathOfAThousandCuts: Shurikens in ''Sengoku''. They're among the weakest melee weapons in the game as far as individual hits are concerned, but they're also the fastest, even surpassing ''Daggers'', and can be used at range due to being thrown.
* DeathWorld: Doom Gates, and ''how.'' They're completely infested with high-level mobs that are only encountered in the regular storyline as bosses. There is no standard level in the dungeons, so mobs can range from anywhere between level 1 and level 9999. The area is filled with incredibly nasty traps that can easily deal thousands of HP in damage if you're unlucky enough to get hit by one. Immortals fly around. [[DegradedBoss Degraded versions of the final boss]] run around everywhere. Even better, Doom Gates are considered traps and thus you cannot even see one unless you're standing directly in front of it.
* DeclarationOfProtection: Souma's motivation for staying with Pudding, despite his misgivings for them venturing into Arcanus Cella in the first place.
* DemotedToDragon: Played with. [[spoiler: Parchmin first pretends to be opposing the BigBad, then he pretends to ''be'' the actual BigBad, but then it's revealed that the real BigBad is still out there somewhere and he was just performing ThePlan to awaken him.]]
* DevourTheDragon: The ultimate fate of [[spoiler: Parchmin in Cladun x2]]. Luckily, due to how the game is designed you can just turn him into a [[PlayerMooks Player Mook]] afterwards if you really liked him and want him to be around again.
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: The result of killing Immortals in Cladun x2. The game also rewards you with the specific Immortal's bestiary entry, which is always ended with [[{{Lampshading}} the quote "Are they really immortal?"]]
* DifficultButAwesome: The MML editor in ''x2'' and ''Sengoku''. It can be really frustrating to work with if you have absolutely no idea how MML works, but if you can figure it out, your only limits with the system are your own creativity.
* DiscOneNuke:
** Hilariously, ''Sengoku'' throws you a free '''Widen''' no later than an hour into the game if you go out of the way to farm 30 Fame in the first two Chapters and EX Stages.
** ''Sengoku'' has a lot of interesting examples of this, really.
*** You can get the Armor "Myojin's 1st Work" very early in the game from the Shady Shop if you get enough Fame, and it will outclass every other armor available to you for quite some time.
*** The Shady Shop will sell you a Goddess Shield for 10000G if you farm enough Fame. It's decent for when you get it, but its claim to fame is that it comes with the "Angel" Title equipped, which increases Drop Rate by ''+100'' and deletes 10 lower Titles.
*** Due to how differently it functions, you can snag and escape with nice pieces of endgame gear from the Death-geon as soon as you can unlock it if you're willing to brave its halls.
* DoubleEntendre: The bestiary entries in both games are absolutely ''packed'' with them.
* DungeonCrawling
* EldritchAbomination: Immortals in Cladun x2, who look like an odd combination of [[TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons Beholders]] and massive germ cells. They're also [[MeaningfulName unkillable.]]
* EldritchLocation: Transitory in Cladun x2 is infested with [[InvincibleMinorMinion Immortals]] and is crawling with various Eyefamily mobs. [[DeathWorld Doom Gates are even worse - their walls are made of eyes.]]
* EliteMooks: Mooks colored yellow, green, white, blue, or red all have their strengths and weaknesses, but black-colored mooks have higher stats in every category and often have better types of attacks than their lesser counterparts.
* EmotionEater: Death Glutton. [[MeaningfulName It's in the name.]]
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Hilariously (and tragically) spoofed in Cladun x2. [[spoiler: After Parchmin's EvilPlan is carried out flawlessly, Death Glutton proceeds to take offense to it and... instantly kills him on the spot because [[EvilIsPetty he didn't like his conduct]]]], an act so evil it causes the main characters to defend the previously AffablyEvil villain.
* EvilAllAlong: [[spoiler: Parchmin.]]
* EvilCannotComprehendGood: Spoofed in Cladun x2: the reason why [[spoiler: Death Glutton]] lost is because he couldn't understand the power of friendship or why life was important. [[GracefulLoser He's a good sport about it, though.]]
* ExcusePlot:
** Most of the "story" segments don't have much to do with the dungeon-crawling gameplay.
** The second game has significantly less of a story than the first one.
** And ''Sengoku'' manages to have even ''less'' of a plot than ''x2''.
* EyeScream: The monsters with one huge eye that constitutes most of their body are weak to Piercing damage. You do the math.
* EyesDoNotBelongThere: Immortals most ''certainly'' should not have eyes in the areas that they do.
* FakeDifficulty (and once again, TropesAreNotBad):
** SomeDexterityRequired
** CheckPointStarvation in the Rangeons
** RandomlyDrops, especially Widens
** Some minor cases of HitboxDissonance, especially with skeletons
** UnexpectedGameplayChange from a tried-and-true RPG to a {{Roguelike}} in the Rangeons
* FailureIsTheOnlyOption: An inherent weakness in the plot of the second game is that while your character is technically unique, you cannot influence their decisions. In spite of this, the "mistakes" they do make are eventually vindicated and turn out for the best.
* FateWorseThanDeath: [[spoiler:Sunday, Sherbet, Coco and Asagi]] in their bad endings.
** [[spoiler: Parchmin implies that this is the case with the "prison" he's set up in Cladun x2 and the people fated to die there, but it's subverted when it turns out that he's misunderstood humans and it tuns out to be nearly utopian for them.]]
* FauxActionGirl: Pekora and Lamb in Cladun x2.
* FiveManBand: The player and the four characters who eventually join you in Cladun x2.
** TheHero: The player
** TheLancer: [[spoiler: Widder]]
** TheBigGuy: Lamb
** TheSmartGuy: Mouton
** TheChick: Pekora
** TheSixthRanger: [[spoiler: Parchmin]]
* FluffyCloudHeaven: Averted with Heaven in Cladun x2, which looks more like an endless string of opulent halls and shimmering architecture than anything else.
* FreakyFridayFlip: [[spoiler: Parchmin and Widder]] in Cladun x2. A rare villainous example that isn't PlayedForLaughs.
* FunnyAfro: Bob the stylist.
* GagDub: The games usually avert this, but a quick look at the bestiary in Cladun x2 confirms that there is ''no way'' all of it could have been translated exactly.
* GangplankGalleon: The aptly-named Pirate Ship from Cladun x2.
* GameBreakingBug:
** Cancelling the charge-up of the bow by tapping the block button won't stop the charging sound until the game is closed. For extra fun, you can repeat this until all you can hear is a loud estrident hum.
** NewGamePlus breaks ''Sengoku''. When Yukimura attempts to give you equipment at the beginning of the game, the game will lock up and crash.
* GenkiGirl: Pudding
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: In Cladun X2: "The bed's really messy. Used tissues are laying around everywhere."
* GimmickLevel: Mu-geons in ''Sengoku'', which are essentially just Tri-geons, but have the added rule of disabling all of your Titles, including those on equipment and Artifacts.
* GracefulLoser: Surprisingly enough, [[spoiler: Death Glutton]] in Cladun x2. Once you defeat him the first time, he promptly asks you to leave him alone so that he can end up reflecting on why exactly it was that he lost. The second time you beat him and after your main character explains the concept of Magic Circles to him, he begins to laugh uncontrollably and says that it's no wonder he lost, if he didn't even know the process that you were able to grow stronger.
* GuideDangIt: Prepare to tear your hair out trying to figure out how to unlock the special Magic Circles without any help from the internet.
* HailfirePeaks: ''Constantly'' in Perfect World and Purgatory in Cladun x2, specifically of the fire/ice variety. The Various Area near the end of the Neogeons and the boss floor of the Neogeon also draws upon this.
* HubLevel: Arcanus Cella proper.
* HumanShield: Anyone in the Magic Circle takes damage ahead of the main character. Once they are all defeated, the player will take damage directly.
* IdiotHero: Battleblo
* IllGirl: Pudding has the incurable [[SoapOperaDisease "Die Laughing" disease]] that is guaranteed to kill her in about six months, but she has ''absolutely none'' of the personality traits or physical frailty usually associated with the trope. Instead, she's hyperactive and acts as though she has carte blanche to do whatever she wants, and her bucket list's biggest item right now is "explore dungeon, get treasure."
* IDontLikeTheSoundOfThatPlace:
** Many of the later areas in the randomly generated dungeons could qualify. Imminent Area? Immortal Area? Curse Area? Fierce Area? Sorcery Area? ''Worst Area?'' '''Massacre Area?'''
** If you thought Ran-geons, Neo-geons, and Tri-geons were bad, ''Sengoku'' introduces a fourth variant called the '''Death-geon'''.
* IncendiaryExponent: If you happen to jump into a fire, your main character will, of course, take damage, but your weapon will also now do fire damage!
** Ditto with ice damage, by jumping into a stream of frozen water. In fact, this can actually be weaponized against monsters that are usually immune to normal damage, like Ghosts.
* IneffectualLoner: Played with and zigzagged in Cladun x2. While the other named characters accuse your character of this due to him/her going off on his/her own to fight monsters, he/she is also supported by the members of the Magic Circle... which more or less means that they stay in the tavern while he/she goes off and fights.
* InfinityPlusOneElement: Mind has some elements of this: it's very rare to have on equipment or spells and generally ends up affecting nearly everything in the game either normally or deals greater damage (in fact, some monsters have Mind as their only weakness). All player characters have abysmal Mind resistance as well, apart from Ninjas and Saints. On the other hand, enemies who are more spiritual in nature (such as Ghosts) are often heavily resistant to it.
* [[InfinityPlusOneSword Infinity Plus One Equipment]]: They exist, but are incredibly hard to find and require you to be facing enemies in the mid-thousands of levels. [[LuckBasedMission Happy hunting!]]
* InsistentTerminology: Crosstine isn't a stray cat. He's a familiar and comes from a noble bloodline!
* InsufferableGenius: Mouton comes across as very arrogant. Pekora even makes a small aside to the player character that the only thing he doesn't know a lot about is humility.
* InvincibleMinorMook: Immortals in Cladun x2, though calling them minor is slightly underestimating them, as they deal extremely high amounts of damage.
* ImprobableUseOfAWeapon: The jump attack makes a full damage attack with the blunt type, even with [[SetSwordstoStun swords]] or [[PistolWhipping bows]].
* JiveTurkey: Parchmin, though he's a milder example than most and usually refrains from using incredibly outdated terms. Justified in that he's incredibly eccentric to begin with.
* JungleJapes: The Jungle Area in the earlier areas of the Neogeons.
* KaizoTrap: Doom Gates have a very bad tendency to pop up just before you reach an exit. Bonus points if it's in the middle of a tiny hallway, making it truly unavoidable. It's also the only gate which ''still'' forces you to enter if you jump over it.
* KatanasAreJustBetter: ''Sengoku'' has a Katana weapon class, which is just a reskin of the Sword class from the last two games.
* KickTheDog: [[spoiler: Upon first appearing in Cladun x2, the main characters question whether Death Glutton is truly evil; then he murders Parchmin, his Dragon, who had worked throughout the entire game to bring him back to life again, because he was annoying.]]
* KilledOffForReal: Impossible to do in the games. Even if an NPC or PC is completely killed off, the editing function is sufficient enough for the player to remake them and give them their old name, even if they lose all of their progress.
* KillEmAll: [[spoiler:In ''Sengoku'', the BigBad's grand scheme is the extinction of the human race, although for an incredibly petty reason: she found that judging human souls was taking far too long compared to how many kept stacking up, so she figured that if she killed humanity, she wouldn't have to judge souls anymore. In short, ''she got sick of her job.'']]
* KillItWithFire: Actually a dialog option in the game. As previously suspected, at least one of the localizers is OneOfUs.
* LaserGuidedAmnesia: The prisoners of the Arcanus Cella in Cladun x2 have all had their memories wiped clean of the crimes they have done. [[spoiler: Or at least the criminals who came before Arcanus Cella was condemned - by the time Cladun x2 rolls around the only denizens present are Pekora, Lamb, Mouton, and the player character, who have not sinned and are being told this by Parchmin to fool them into losing hope.]]
* LethalJokeCharacter: If cornered, a [[MetalSlime Hiyokki]] will fight, and it hits ''hard''.
* LevelGrinding: This is a Nippon Ichi game. Want to do the postgame? Prepare to do a ''lot'' of this.
* LifeDrain: The Vampire Title will allow you to siphon 2% of damage dealt as HP. However, this comes at the cost of negating EXP gain.
* LighterAndSofter: ''Sengoku''[='=]s version of Arcanus Cella is a quite happier place than in the previous games, as it's basically the feudal Japan version of the afterlife. You're initially tasked with helping souls who have lost their way reincarnate to the human world. [[spoiler:There's also the part about Hell taking over and trying to kill all of humanity later on in the game, but none of it is played too seriously, and the BigBad is a good sport.]]
* LimitBreak: The Awakening Skill. When used in conjunction with a Magic Circle that has Awaken spaces on it, using the Awakening skill will activate the Awaken space on the Magic Circle and trigger powerful buffs.
* LordBritishPostulate: While Immortals are supposed to only be killable through the Punish title in Cladun x2, they can also be defeated by reflecting their own damage back at them.
* LuckBasedMission:
** Getting the Lucky Seven Magic Circle in ''x2''. You have to finish a Rangeon with the level on the final floor being exactly level 777, and you have no control over exactly what level any particular floor will be at, meaning that you may have to go through hundreds of runs before you can obtain it. And it isn't even that great anyways, once you get powerful enough to take on a level 777 dungeon.
** Killing an Immortal. Without damage reflecting, it's only possible to do so with a specific Title, which is not only quite rare, but it gives you only a '''1%''' chance to kill on any given hit.
* LukeIAmYourFather: [[spoiler: Bob is Despina's grandfather. Also, Crosstine is his familiar.]]
* MacrossMissileMassacre: The result of constantly spamming Arrow Rain in Cladun x2, [[RecycledInSpace except with arrows instead of ballistics.]]
* MakesJustAsMuchSenseInContext: ''Sengoku'' has a special dungeon called the Bath-geon, which is apparently a dungeon found at the bottom of a men's public bathhouse tub. [[BrutalBonusLevel It also seals your Titles and Wall Stone enhancements and is packed up the wazoo with Immortals.]]
* MarathonLevel: All Ran-geon types except the Death-geon run on for 99 Floors. There are Exits that can randomly show up if you want to cut your run early, however.
* TheMaze: Labyrinth Gardens.
* MercyInvincibility: Averted on the player's side. [[NintendoHard What mercy?]]
* MetalSlime:
** Hiyokkis are birdlike creatures that are generally non-combatant and will run if attacked. Killing them nets you an enormous amount of gold, a guaranteed item drop, and tons of experience, but they have enormous amounts of health and run away extremely fast. This is saved from VideoGameCrueltyPotential by the fact that according to the flavor text they're all insufferable jerks and taunt you about the items as they're running from you.
** Owls in ''Sengoku'' are essentially Hiyokkis. However, they run less and fight more.
* MillionToOneChance: Apparently, the "Die Laughing" disease has a one-in-a-million chance of transferring from one person to another. Coco has the worst luck in the world. Guess what happens?
* MissionPackSequel: Outside of some major new features like multiplayer, ''Sengoku'' is essentially a {{Wutai}}-fied ''x2'' with some new classes and new dungeons.
* TheMole: [[spoiler: Parchmin in Cladun x2]], though he is who he says he is. Sort of. It gets complicated.
* MoneyForNothing: Averted - even if you don't really need to purchase anything right now, you'll definitely want to save for that third/fourth [[CrackIsCheaper Widen]]...
* MoneySpider: Every single monster in the game except, for some odd reason, mushrooms. The bestiary entry in Cladun x2 lampshades this with the description of Poles (turrets), saying that monsters "must use them as piggy banks."
* {{Mordor}}:
** Chaos in Cladun x2.
** Hell in ''Sengoku''.
* MultipleEndings:
** Each story character has a "bad ending" that can be viewed by going to the door in the tree. Also, once you've beaten the final boss once, you can see the "good ending" for each character (other than "secret character" [[spoiler:Asagi]]) by going back and beating it again using that character as your main. (You get the secret character's "good ending" by beating a BonusBoss.) Some of the endings can even be accessed as early as the first few minutes after leaving the first dungeon.
** ''x2'' has a hidden bad ending that can be seen if you [[spoiler:return to Descent of Might Symbol after beating Death Glutton and go through the newly-accessible Exit Gate at the far end of the map.]]
* MysteriousProtector: Sherbet, for Dotache the bartender [[spoiler: who is actually a ''princess'']].
* NamesToRunAwayFromReallyFast: Does [[ObviouslyEvil Death Glutton]] sound like a demon you would want to have as a friend?
* NewGamePlus:
** The second game has this, but it's virtually useless apart from being able to revisit the tutorial [[spoiler: and the first true fight with Death Glutton,]] as well as respawning all of the old red treasure chests that were present in the dungeons.
** Ditto for ''Sengoku''.
* NobleDemon: [[spoiler: Death Glutton, when separated from his bloodthirsty side. It's even hinted slightly before that when he kills Parchmin for making a fool of himself.]]
* NoHeroDiscount: Even Coco the shopkeeper has to pay full price for his equipment. [[FridgeLogic Who's he buying it from?]]
* NoHistoricalFiguresWereHarmed: The Lords in ''Sengoku'' are named after actual Japanese warlords during the feudal era.
* NotTheIntendedUse: Awaken tiles only activate when the main character uses the Awakening ability, giving access to artifacts beyond it. However, since they don't require a connection to the sub, many players use the Awaken-locked tiles as Mana-Up farms instead.
* NumberTwoForBrains: [[spoiler: Parchmin in Cladun x2, while his {{plan}} was impressive, wasn't exactly a paragon of intelligence.]]
* OldSaveBonus: In a fashion; if you happened to download ''x2'' to your Vita or sent the save data forward from your PSP, any existing MML and Character Edit data can also be used in ''Sengoku''.
* OneTimeDungeon: Strangely enough, in Cladun x2 the tutorial dungeon is the only one you can't revisit. [[spoiler: You can actually revisit Death Glutton's boss level, Descent of Might Symbol, but nobody will be there and an exit is placed at the beginning of the level instead.]]
* OneWingedAngel: [[spoiler:After being defeated once, Enma transforms into an upgraded form that can defend against attacks and is substantially stronger than before.]]
* OurDragonsAreDifferent: [[spoiler: Parchmin the shape-shifting, fashion-conscious, slang-hurling ''human administrator.'' He's also TheMole.]]
* OverratedAndUnderleveled: Every character that joins the Magic Circle starts out at level 1, even those that join very late in the game.
** Make sure to create all of the characters you can near the beginning of the game, lest you spend an even longer time later on catching up.
* PalmtreePanic: The very first two areas of the Neogeon, the Initiation Area and the Tropical Area.
* ThePlan: [[spoiler: A particularly awe-inspiring example by Parchmin in Cladun x2. After hearing that Arcanus Cella is going to be condemned to stop the resident EmotionEater Death Glutton from awakening and wreaking havoc on the outside world, he [[FreakyFridayFlip body-swaps with the administrator of Arcanus Cella]], Widder, to impersonate him, and then once again opens up channels and starts pulling innocent people in. Once there, he lies to them and says that their crimes have been erased from their memory via amnesia when in fact they have committed none. He then gives them the choice of either fighting in vain through the multiple dungeons in Arcanus Cella, giving Death Glutton power from the deaths of monsters that are occurring, or by giving up, living a life of opulence and pointlessness, and letting Death Glutton feast on resignation and despair. The only flaw in his plan was failing to comprehend how much Death Glutton cared for his subordinates: that is, not much.]]
* PlanetHeck: Chaos, filled with ninjas, demons, demon lords, liches, golems, insectoid spellcasters, and dragons, to name a few. Surprisingly, it's relatively devoid of lava, preferring to instead coat the scenery with an impenetrable coat of gray, barren rock.
* PlayerMooks: You can create them once Dotache appears in town.
** In the second game, you don't have access to ''any'' named characters until very late in the game, at which point PlayerMooks will make up the entirety of your party.
* PocketDimension: The Arcanus Cella of Cladun x2, which functions as a maximum-security prison for notorious criminals. Also the Chaos, Heaven, and Transitory areas in Cladun x2's Trigeon. The Doom World may also qualify.
* PoisonMushroom: While not a broad example, trying to tell Hiyokki and Immortal Traps apart from each other in a grassy area or when sight is otherwise obscured. While both traps look identical on the edges, one trap summons a MetalSlime that you can kill for a load of gold and a guranteed item drop, while the other summons an InvincibleMinorMinion that chases you around for a good twenty seconds before it disappears.
* ThePowerOfFriendship:
** Join the Magic Circle and become strong!
** Spoofed: Magic Circles are more or less magical enchantments that give a physical form to the power of friendship that powers up the "main character." It's even [[{{Lampshade}} Lampshaded]] in the second game, where [[spoiler: Death Glutton points out that since he didn't even know such a process existed, it's no wonder he lost to you.]]
** Downplayed in ''Sengoku'', which renames Sub Characters into "Vassals" and changes the term "Main Character" into "Lord", so it's more like the characters in your Magic Circle are subordinates.
* TooKinkyToTorture: Lamb is explicitly stated ingame to be a masochist, in compensation for the crimes she has [[spoiler: not actually]] committed.
* TrapDoor: Doom Gates in ''x2'' have the dubious honor of being the only type of gate to the next floor that cannot be seen unless standing nearly on top of it. [[ShmuckBait Suffice to say that going into one usually does not end well.]]
* ProphecyTwist: Pudding had a dream that if she went to Arcanus Cella, she wouldn't die from her incurable illness. She assumes that it means if she keeps exploring the dungeons, she'll find a cure. That's not quite what happens...
* RandomlyGeneratedLevels: Ran-geons in the first game, Neo-geons and Trigeons in ''x2'' and ''Sengoku'', and Death-geons and Mu-geons in ''Sengoku'' revolve around procedurally-generated dungeons.
* RareRandomDrop: The infamous Widen artifacts. 1/1000 chance of dropping from only a single enemy in the game (which happens to be a {{MetalSlime}}), that you need to carry out of the dungeon alive to be able to use, and that you need at least two of to be able to perfect a character? Yes, they're that bad.
** That being said, you can buy them from the BlackMarket... it's just that they're hideously expensive.
* RidiculouslyCuteCritter:
** The original and ''x2'' have the Hiyokkis, which are large, adorable bird creatures that are both friend and foe. The enemy versions are also {{Metal Slime}}s that drop valuable items.
** ''Sengoku'' has Owls, which replace the Hiyokkis. Hiyokkis are still around, it's just that there's very few of them due to ''possibly'' being driven to ruin by the Owls, and the remaining few hide out in a dilapidated old house at the corner of the hub.
* RebelliousPrincess: [[spoiler: Dotache, the middle-aged, ''male'' bartender, is a princess who deliberately cursed herself with a permanent disguise so she could run away.]]
** Lamb in Cladun x2 was a princess who started and led a rebellion against her home country, throwing the kingdom into disaster. [[spoiler: It's a lie told by Parchmin (and justified via LaserGuidedAmnesia) to convince her that she had sinned.]]
* {{Retraux}}: The graphics are blocky, but still surprisingly detailed and nuanced. The Retraux also applies to the music; you can listen to the honestly beautiful soundtrack, or you can listen to an 8-bit chiptune version of it.
* TheRival: Sunday and Battleblo. Sunday wound up in Arcanus Cella so that she could find the "ultimate sword", while Battleblo followed her there in search of the "ultimate shield".
* {{Roguelike}}: While an RPG, if dungeon-delving, the Cladun also borrows many elements of roguelike games with all of the randomly-generated environments.
* SavvyGuyEnergeticGirl: Souma and Puddingi
* SchmuckBait: "Don't be lured by the promise of treasure".
* ScrewTheRulesIHaveMoney: Fame is awarded by speedrunning through levels. If that is not your style you can buy it in the Black Market instead. If you do so, the fame you have will be forever [[EasyModeMockery displayed in poo-brown letters]].
* SealedEvilInACan: The reason why Arcanus Cella [[spoiler: was condemned in Cladun x2 and everyone was evacuated out of the area: Death Glutton was posing a massive threat both to Arcanus Cella and the world as a whole. Unfortunately, due to Parchmin's interference, it didn't work.]]
* SexFaceTurn: Mouton tries to instill one of these in the player in the second game so that he can stop raiding dungeons [[spoiler: and stop giving Death Glutton more power to awaken with]] by telling Pekora and Lamb to try and seduce him, saying that it can't possibly fail. He promptly throws a fit when the player walks away due to anticipating the motive behind the action.
* ShapeshifterModeLock: Invoked by [[spoiler: Parchmin]] as part of his {{plan}} : while he's a natural shapeshifter, inducing a FreakyFridayFlip in one of his weakest forms would leave the victim stuck in a particularly weak body that poses little threat.
* ShiftingSandLand: The desert levels, naturally.
* ShmuckBait: Some players swear by going into Doom Gates when possible due to the prospect of overleveled loot and overleveled equipment. The success of this... varies.
* ShopKeeper: Coco
* ShoutOut:
** The bestiary entries in both games are ''full'' of these.
** The Lord entry for Chosokabe Motochika in ''Sengoku'' specifically mentions him as the strongest playable character in [[VideoGame/SengokuBasara "that one game".]]
* ShownTheirWork:
** The Seer character in ''Sengoku'' will give trivia on the dungeon you're slated to enter next in the Story, and will sometimes provide tidbits about what happens to those places in the future and modern-day Japan.
** The Lords book you can find in the Mansion also provides information about the real world versions of the respective characters.
* ShrinkingViolet: In spite of her ActionGirl appearance, Sunday actually suffers from crippling shyness; she can't talk to men without using her sword as a SecurityBlanket.
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: The inevitable result of any ice-themed level in either game, and there are a ''lot.'' Anything that can inflict an Ice status on you can also give you ice physics for a time unless you're set on fire.
* SmartPeopleWearGlasses: Mouton is notably one of the only characters in either game to wear a very noticeable pair of NerdGlasses. He's also a (self-proclaimed) genius.
* SmashMook: Golems in both games. Their attacks are smashing the ground, smashing the ground twice in a row, and (if you get too far away) to drop rocks on you.
* SophisticatedAsHell: Parchmin. Say what you want about his intelligence or tact, he's certainly fashion-conscious with that cape and his dialogue is dripping with "youth slang."
* SpeedRun: Finishing levels under the allotted time will give you access to higher-quality items in Coco's shop.
* StalkerWithoutACrush: Sherbert is repeatedly described as Dotache's "stalker" until the characters learn why she's been acting like one.
* ThemeNaming:
** The characters in the first game. Lots of desserts, in case you couldn't tell.
** Monsters in the same family tend to follow this. For example, the Demon monsters in ''x2'' are named after days of the week. The Pole enemies are also named with different numerical prefixes. The Fire-Man enemies in ''Sengoku'' are named after the ''Comicbook/SpiderMan'' series.
* TheMindIsAPlaythingOfTheBody: [[spoiler: Widder in Cladun x2, while actually being human, has a ton of dog-related mannerisms due to being trapped in a FreakyFridayFlip in a dog's body for a manner of years.]]
* ThrowTheDogABone: [[spoiler: Asagi finally gets her shot at being TheHero...]]
** YankTheDogsChain: [[spoiler:...But of course, Asagi starts glitching out once she joins the party, proving TheProtagonist is simply not in the cards for her. ''Ever.'']]
* TomeOfEldritchLore: Much of ''Sengoku''[='=]s plot revolves around one of these, called The Book of R'lyeh (as a ShoutOut to the actual Necronomicon). [[spoiler:It was sent to Earth by Enma, the ruler of Hell, as a way to speed up the whole reincarnation process. However, a few Japanese warlords who got their hands on it were a bit smarter than she expected, and figured out that it also has the power to ''summon the gates of Hell.'' Enma figures this option also works, since if humanity dies, she doesn't have to work anymore.]]
* UnsettlingGenderReveal: In ''Sengoku'', everyone is shocked when they find out that [[spoiler:Okuni is actually male.]] Masamune even comments on this.
* UpgradeArtifact: There are a whole bunch of artifacts which increase different parameters for your main character. Special mention goes to Widens, which can be attacked to an Ability slot to drastically power up a character's attacks. Enemies can get them too, which can lead to effects as mild as their projectiles going faster, or as drastic as the resident [[{{Mooks}} Peons]] suddenly gaining the ability to fire massive explosive lasers out of their attacks.
* VainSorceress: Despina. She's also a lazy one, as she eventually gives up on trying to dispose of the mask.
* TheVeryDefinitelyFinalDungeon: Perfect World in Cladun x2 is a meta-example, with Purgatory being a straighter one due to the fact that the plot is oddly divided to before the final boss and after. It doesn't help that the game has a very self-referential definition of a final boss, and that altogether there are a good three bosses who can be considered the 'final' one.
* ViolationOfCommonSense: At first glance, it wouldn't seem that logical to purchase the Summon Immortals item in ''x2'' and ''Sengoku'', since why would you want a nearly-unkillable floating blob of death chasing you in every level? However, completing Story dungeons while it's on will emblazon that level with a special mark, and if you complete every non-FinalBoss Story dungeon with it, you'll unlock a powerful Magic Circle.
* VoluntaryShapeshifting: A particularly scary example in Cladun x2 with [[spoiler: Parchmin]], naturally a dragon, and who on top of this can also BodySurf. Due to this, it gets incredibly difficult in the middle of the game to figure out what the heck is going on, and who's who.
* WakeUpCallBoss: The boss of the Monster House. Simply hacking and slashing away won't beat him, as his shield guards against all attacks from the front, significantly reducing damage.
* WarmUpBoss: The first boss of ''Sengoku'', Attack on Orochi. Grab a Staff, stand just outside of his fireball range, and swing away.
* TheWallsHaveEyes: The Doom Area. Justified in that it's apparently in some way connected to Immortals, considering that murals of Immortals occasionally appear on the floors inside and Immortals have an annoying tendency to spawn everywhere in there.
* WeHaveReserves: Played with in Cladun x2. Killing the evil minions in Arcanus Cella [[spoiler: actually powers up their boss, Death Glutton.]]
* {{Wutai}}: ''Sengoku'' is set during, well, the [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Sengoku period]] of Japan, which means the entire setting is a feudal Japan-themed version of Arcanus Cella.
* YeOldeButcheredEnglish: Gracia in ''Sengoku'' speaks entirely like this. It's strong enough that it induces a GotMeDoingIt on Ranmaru.
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