%% No need to list the heroes here, we don't want edit wars.
%% Please help move wicks to Main.FateStayNight to VisualNovel.FateStayNight. Click on the "Related to" button above to start.
%% Yes, we get it, the game has multiple endings. No need to pothole it every time the word ending comes up.
%% Make sure you read ExampleIndentation before editing.
[[quoteright:350:[[SummoningRitual http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Fate_stay_night_-_are_you_my_master_9174.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:''I ask of you: Are you my Master?'']]

->'' I am the bone of my sword \\
Steel is my body and fire is my blood \\
I have created over a thousand blades \\
Unknown to Death, Nor known to Life \\
Have withstood pain to create many weapons \\
Yet, those hands will never hold anything \\
So as I pray, unlimited blade works.''

There exists a [[TheLifestream plane outside of human concepts]], and within there is the Throne of Heroes. Here, the records of the brave men and women whose lives have become legends are kept, to be used as eternal guardians of mankind. When a legend has been venerated enough by humanity, it can become immortalized as a [[BeethovenWasAnAlienSpy Heroic Spirit that surpasses time itself]]. [[SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism However the definition of what is a "hero" is broad]] -- [[ProtagonistCenteredMorality even the ruthless and heartless are the heroes of their own tales]].

[[SummoningRitual There is a ritual known as the Heaven's Feel]] where seven Heroic Spirits are summoned to become "Servants" to seven "Masters". They must then fight each other in a seven-way battle royale, whereupon the last Master/Servant team remaining is granted the ultimate prize: the Holy Grail, a legendary artifact said to grant any wish of whoever claims it.

As public knowledge of a Heroic Spirit's true identity would reveal their strengths and weaknesses, each Servant is divided into ([[EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep and referred to as]]) one of seven classes: Saber, Archer, Lancer, Rider, Caster, Berserker and Assassin. Finally, each Servant is armed with a number of [[InfinityPlusOneSword "Noble Phantasms"]]: the armaments and abilities that personify their legend.

Shirou Emiya is an OrdinaryHighSchoolStudent who happens to know a little magic from his late adopted father, a retired mage. When he stays behind at school one night, Shirou stumbles into the beginning of Heaven's Feel V, aka the Fifth Holy Grail War. The official rules state that all witnesses must be killed, but before that can happen Shirou finds himself bound to a Servant of the "Saber" class, widely regarded to be the most powerful of the seven.

With the aid of Rin Tousaka, a rival magus who summons an [[EasyAmnesia amnesiac]] "Archer" Servant, Shirou learns the rules of the Holy Grail War and just how far its participants will go to have their wishes granted. His dream is to become a selfless "Hero of Justice", but just how much meaning does that carry in a tournament where one must kill or be killed?

The original game is a PC {{Eroge}} VisualNovel created by the company Type-Moon, and set in the Franchise/{{Nasuverse}}. It is split into three routes:

* ''Fate'': A route focused on Shirou's relationship with Saber and his ideal of becoming a selfless "Hero of Justice" who can protect the lives of everyone and everything. It also lays down the characters and the framework of the Holy Grail War for the reader.
* ''Unlimited Blade Works'': A route focused on Rin and Archer, specifically delving into Archer's mysterious past and his conflict with Shirou's ideals.
* ''Heaven's Feel'': The third and final route, focused on Shirou's childhood friend Sakura Matou, the dark machinations of her grandfather, and the secrets behind the creation of the Heaven's Feel ritual.

Although [[NoExportForYou never officially released in English]], the game originally had a FanTranslation patch made for it by the good folks at [[http://mirrormoon.org Mirror Moon]]. The VisualNovel has been adapted for the UsefulNotes/PlayStation2, [[BleachedUnderpants minus the sex scenes]] [[UpdatedRerelease and plus lots of cool new stuff]]. The [=PS2=] version is subtitled ''Realta Nua'' and you can implement the extra content from this version onto the original CD/DVD installed PC version [[http://rnpatch.blogspot.com/ with this patch]].

A [[UsefulNotes/PlayStationVita PS Vita]] port of ''Realta Nua'' has been released in Japan on the 29th of November, 2012 with high resolution graphics and three openings animated by Creator/{{Ufotable}}.

A version of ''Realta Nua'' was also released for PC in the beginning of 2012, with the three routes separated into individual downloads. The newest (and arguably most complete) [[http://forums.nrvnqsr.com/showthread.php/4745-Fate-Stay-Night-Realta-Nua-PC-version-Mirror-Moon-TL-insertion-project English translation]] is intended to work with this version. It adds the original H scenes (toggleable), corrected translations, updated BGM, and the opening videos from the PS Vita version.


* An {{anime}} adaptation created by Creator/StudioDEEN, released in 2006. The story is mostly based on the ''Fate'' route, with a few additions from the other two routes to make the series fill 24 episodes and give more attention to characters that were pushed into the background during ''Fate''.
* A movie adaptation, also created by Creator/StudioDEEN and released in 2010. This version covers the ''Unlimited Blade Works'' route, with emphasis on the action scenes. (This is sometimes counted as the ''second'' movie, after ''Fate/stay night TV reproduction'', a two-hour OVA recut from the TV show.)
* A {{manga}} adaptation serialised from 2006-2012. Like the anime adaptation, it's based on the ''Fate'' scenario with some additional material from the other routes as well as some [[AdaptationExpansion original content]]. The artist, Datto Nishiwaki, is a big Type-Moon fan, and makes references to other Franchise/{{Nasuverse}} works in his end-of-volume rants.
* [[Anime/FateStayNightUnlimitedBladeWorks Another anime]] by Creator/{{ufotable}} based on ''Unlimited Blade Works'', first season released in 2014. The second season aired in 2015.
* A ''Heaven's Feel'' movie by ufotable has been confirmed. The first preview can be seen [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3X7JEFF9mvs here]].
* A ''Heaven's Feel'' manga began serialization in May 2015.

In 2005, it received a sequel titled ''VisualNovel/FateHollowAtaraxia'', and in 2006, a 4-volume light novel prequel titled ''LightNovel/FateZero'' which was adapted into an anime in 2011-2012. For other derived and related media set in the same universe see Franchise/{{Nasuverse}}.

!!Tropes in ''Fate/stay night'':


[[folder: Fate]]
* AndIMustScream:
** If you refuse to participate in the Grail War when you're taken to the church for the first time, Illya proceeds to brutalize Shirou and torture him without killing him.
** Shirou is not the only Fourth Grail War orphan. [[spoiler:The other children were taken in by the church and used by Kotomine [[PoweredByAForsakenChild for powering his associate Gilgamesh's]] {{mana}}--not to keep him in this world, since he already has a body, just to supply him with mana to use his abilities as a Servant. The children are stuck in a grave, their bodies and souls being slowly dissolved. And yes, they are fully aware. They'd be screaming except their vocal chords have mostly rotted away]].
* BadGuysDoTheDirtyWork: [[spoiler:Illya and Berserker]] conveniently kill [[spoiler:Shinji]] after his Servant is defeated by Saber, saving Shirou from the moral quandary presented by having to deal with a totally defenseless person who crossed the MoralEventHorizon right in front of him previously.
* BigDamnHeroes: {{Subverted}} by [[spoiler:Gilgamesh]] who, after saving the heroes from their last opponent, [[MakeWayForTheNewVillains becomes their new one]].
* BiTheWay: [[spoiler:Rin learns something new about herself while helping Shirou and Saber replenish the latter's magical energy.]]
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:Shirou DidNotGetTheGirl but decides that life goes on. Illyasviel survives, but probably won't live more than a few years (at best) due to her being a homunculus.]] And although the DistantFinale in the PS2 version [[spoiler:has Shirou and Saber reuniting, it's also made very clear that not only are [[TogetherInDeath they both dead]], but Saber and Shirou were separated for a ''very'' long time.]]
* BodyHorror:
** The first ending possible results in Berserker leaving Shirou a disembodied head, which Illya will keep alive and torture for as long as she pleases.
** The fate of the [[spoiler:other orphans from the fire ten years ago]]. They resemble nothing so much as rotting, bug-infested, limbless corpses... but they're ''still alive and aware'' [[spoiler:so that Gilgamesh can feed on their prana]].
* ChekhovsGun:
** A sword keeps appearing in Shirou's dream throughout the route. [[spoiler: It's the sword Caliburn, which Shirou projects in order to defeat Berserker]].
** Saber mentions having lost her final Noble Phantasm, [[spoiler:Avalon, Excalibur's sheath]]. Rin also narrates a story [[spoiler:about Merlin, saying the King's true weapon is his sheath.]] It was [[spoiler:inside Shirou and keeping him alive]] the whole time. It was also her summoning catalyst.
* DistressedDude: Shirou gets kidnapped by Illya halfway through the route, forcing Saber, Rin, and Archer to come to his aid.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Bedivere. He's voiced by one, too.
* EarnYourHappyEnding: In the ending of the scenario of ''Realta Nua'', [[spoiler:as Saber lies dying, lamenting on losing Shiro, she is visited by Merlin, who, feeling that she is owed something for all her hardships, claims that there is a way for her to be reunited with the one she loves. However, it would require two impossible feats: she [[IWillWaitForYou must wait for him continuously]] and Shirou [[IWillFindYou must pursue her endlessly]]. They do, and are reunited in what appears to be Avalon.]]
* FissionMailed: Telling Saber there won't be lunch and teasing her about her growling stomach makes her mad enough to put on her armour and send you to the Tiger Dojo. Except it's not over and the story continues!
* ForegoneConclusion: It's impossible to [[spoiler:save Saber from dying]] because it happened about 1500 years ago from Shirou's perspective. However, this doesn't mean she can't [[spoiler:live out a full life ''here'' and then simply return on the verge of death back to the battlefield and then die there.]] This only happens in one ending, though.
* GoodPeopleHaveGoodSex: While [[TheirFirstTime Shirou and Saber's first time]] is incredibly awkward, [[note]]as they're on the run from a very dangerous foe and Saber is on the verge of disappearing[[/note]] their subsequent sexual encounter is treated as the best thing ever, despite how inexperienced both are.
* GuideDangIt: Gathering all the Tiger Stamps from the bad ends gives you a number of special scenes in the end. Though most {{Bad End}}s are fairly easy to figure out, Bad End 13 requires some hoop jumping to get Saber's Relationship Points low enough.
* HolyGround: The church in Fuyuki City is considered this, being used as a neutral site for Masters to meet.
* InstantRunes: Rider creates a rune circle almost instantaneously to use her Noble Phantasm and escape from Saber when cornered.
* KillSteal: Illya apologizes to Shirou for killing [[spoiler: Shinji Matou]] when he tried to escape, as she assumes Shirou would have wanted the kill.
* LetThemDieHappy: In the ending, when a dying [[spoiler:Artoria]] tells [[spoiler:Sir Bedivere]] that she saw a dream and asks him whether she can see the same dream again if she closes her eyes, he says that yes, he had that experience once before.
* LoveAtFirstSight: Shirou falls for Saber the moment he first sees her after accidentally summoning her.
* MadeOfEvil: [[spoiler: The contents of the Holy Grail.]]
* MagicContractRomance: Saber is bound to Shirou by the Command Spell, but she genuinely comes to love him and his willingness to protect her during the route.
* MindRape: Shirou sees horrific images of every crime imaginable when [[spoiler:he's covered with mud from the Grail.]]
* NoGuyWantsAnAmazon: Self-invoked by Saber the second time Shirou sees her naked. She feels embarrassed that she is so muscular compared to other women like Rin.
* NotQuiteDead: Berserker is seemingly blown to pieces by Rin, [[spoiler:but his Noble Phantasm gives him 12 lives, meaning Rin is still within his grasp.]]
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: Archer's fight against Berserker, with the former managing to kill the later ''six times'' before being defeated.
* SetRightWhatOnceWentWrong: Saber's wish is to [[spoiler:undo her rule so Britain can have a better king]].
* StarCrossedLovers: Shirou and Saber. He's a regular boy with a hero complex, she's a Heroic Spirit that only wishes for the Holy Grail. [[spoiler:She also wishes to basically erase herself from history. Even though that doesn't end up happening]], she has to return to [[spoiler:the time of her death and finally die]], reminiscing her time with Shirou as a dream.
* StayInTheKitchen: Shirou has shades of this in both this route and the anime adaptation, which gets blown out of proportion by MemeticMutation. [[SubvertedTrope In reality]] Shirou's insistence that Saber leave the fighting to him has little to do with sexism and much more to do with Saber being badly wounded, but since Shirou doesn't have the self-awareness to say "I don't want you protecting me [[SurvivorGuilt because I don't feel my life has any value]]" he defaults to a half-assed excuse instead.
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial: After a rather serious monologue with Saber contemplating about protecting Shirou, and eventually having the brief thought of her feeling like a girl in love like in the story books, Rin walks by and asks where Shirou is.
--> '''Saber''': R-Rin! What is it? I-It's not like I'm surrendering to Shirou!
* TemporalParadox: [[spoiler:Saber]]'s goal is to go back in time and [[spoiler:have someone other than her become King Arthur, as she believes herself a poor king responsible for her country's destruction]].
* TheirFirstTime: Shirou and Saber have sex for the first time in a cabin and it is ''incredibly'' awkward, since despite their mutual feelings, Saber is at the verge of disappearing.
* TimeTravelRomance: Of the tragic variety. Saber is a woman summoned from medieval times, whereas Shirou is a boy from the 21st century. [[spoiler:In the end, Saber has to return to the time of her death and finally rest.]]
* TitleDrop:
** "Stay Night" is the title of the climactic scene of the ''Fate'' route, where Shirou and Saber face off against the villains.
** The title of the route's True End, "Continuation of the Dream", comes from its final words: [[spoiler:''"Do you see it, KingArthur? The continuation of your dream?"'']].
* TogetherInDeath: "The Last Episode" has [[spoiler:Shirou and Saber. Shirou most likely followed the same path as Archer, but unlike Archer he did not regret his ideals because those were the ideals he shared with Saber, the ideals that he found to be so beautiful. Also unlike Archer, he had a goal in mind, a goal that is for nobody's sake but his own: to endlessly chase after the golden-haired girl, who is eternally waiting for him alone on the fields of gold.]]
* WallSlump: Rin leaves a trail of blood around her while slumping down the wall after [[spoiler:Kotomine attacks the house to secure Illya.]].

[[folder:Unlimited Blade Works]]
* AlasPoorVillain
** [[spoiler:Caster dies to protect her Master, who then challenges Archer to a completely hopeless fight to avenge her.]]
** [[spoiler:Illya]] dies not as a cruel Master but instead as a [[spoiler:scared little girl.]]
* AttackAttackAttack: Used by Shirou on Gilgamesh. Since both are owners of virtually unlimited weapons but neither are masters of any of those weapons, it becomes a battle of AttackAttackAttack. Even though Gilgamesh's weapons are stronger than Shirou's, [[spoiler:within the boundaries of "Unlimited Blade Works" Shirou can pull out weapons faster than Gilgamesh can, allowing him the decisive blow when a frustrated Gilgamesh decides to take the extra time to try to pull out [[InfinityPlusOneSword Ea]]. It really helps that Gil is extremely arrogant and refuses to fight "mere trash" seriously until it is too late.]]
* AttemptedRape: [[spoiler:Shinji]] attempts to rape [[spoiler:Rin Tohsaka]] while she's captive in the Einzbern castle. The result? [[spoiler:He gets stabbed by Lancer and runs away in fear, looking exceptionally pathetic.]]
* BadassInDistress: Happens to [[spoiler:both Rin and Saber]] at different points in the route.
* BatmanGambit: [[spoiler:Archer]]'s plan involves manipulating Shirou's hero complex[[note]] which he knows very well[[/note]] and [[spoiler:Caster]]'s confidence in her power after capturing [[spoiler:Saber]]. Playing [[spoiler:Caster]] freed him to kill Shirou, whom he knew would come to save [[spoiler:Saber, who could then be contracted by Rin]]. His only mistake was taking too long after killing [[spoiler:Caster]].
* BelligerentSexualTension: Shirou and Rin have some clashes during the course of the route with Rin being a grade-A {{Tsundere}} and Shirou a socially awkward DeadpanSnarker.
* BigDamnHeroes:
** Archer drops in and rescues Shirou when Caster lures Shirou to her temple. He had the chance to defeat Caster too, but he passed it up.
** When Rin and Shirou are fighting against Caster and her Master, [[spoiler:Archer, who had supposedly betrayed them to join Caster, kills both Kuzuki and Caster.]]
** When a desperate Rin is prepared to [[spoiler:die within the Holy Grail and have Saber destroy it, Archer, thought to be dead after his fight with Shirou, helps Rin get out.]]
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler:Shirou cannot absolve Archer's fate, but the Counter Guardian comes to find peace with it.]]
** If you follow the true end, [[spoiler:Archer states while he does find peace, the real Emiya will not and Saber is gone, but has accepted her fate. Rin and Shirou are together and Archer is certain if Rin is with Shirou, he won't become Archer and Shinji pulls a HeelFaceTurn]]
* BodyHorror: When [[spoiler:Gilgamesh uses Shinji as the Grail's core]], his body is transformed into an enormous mound of cancerous tissue leaking cursed mud.
* DarkestHour: [[spoiler:Caster has kidnapped Saber, taken over the church and Archer betrayed Rin.]]
* DelayedReaction: On the tenth day, Taiga casually accepts Rin's presence, she chats with Shirou a bit, before promptly realizing that Rin is present and shouting her question as to why.
* DeusExMachina: [[spoiler:Archer, after losing nearly all his mana from not having a Master for a few days while not doing anything, comes back from being gravely wounded by the Gate of Babylon to being in perfect health and able to use Projection for the ending. After losing a fight to Shirou, at that.]]
* DidIJustSayThatOutLoud:
--> '''Shirou (thinking):''' ''I didn't notice before, but her black hair looks really pretty and causes my heart to beat faster.''
--> '''Tohsaka:''' "...Huh? That's weird. the wound is smaller than before. Do you have a healing charm on you?"
-->'''Shirou:''' "Huh? No, t-that's not true!"
--> '''Tohsaka:''' "Really? But your wound's almost healed."
--> '''Shirou:''' "I didn't say anything about it being pretty -- huh? What did you say, Tohsaka?"
* EverybodyHasLotsOfSex: It's strongly implied for Shirou, Rin and [[spoiler:Saber]] in the Good End.
* FieldOfBlades: [[TitleDrop Unlimited Blade Works]] is a field covered in swords, making it feel like a battle took place there once.
* FinalBossNewDimension: Unlike most examples of this trope, [[spoiler:the new dimension isn't created by the boss, but rather the protagonist - in this case, Shirou materializing Unlimited Blade Works against Gilgamesh.]]
* {{Foreshadowing}}: One of the many praises of Ufotable's adaptation of the UBW route is how they do this. One good example can be found in [[http://31.media.tumblr.com/81453b5df825d9cfc89a8781b92dae8a/tumblr_nf38w9d96n1sw2yn4o1_500.jpg this]] single shot from episode six. The sign bellow the mirror says [[spoiler: "dnager,"]] there's an arrow above it pointing to a mirror, and reflected in that mirror is Archer.
* GasLeakCoverup: A number of non-fatal incidents around the town (caused by Caster's efforts gathering mana) are attributed to gas leaks.
* GratuitousEnglish: "Unlimited Blade Works" and the TitleDrop Noble Phantasm are examples of GratuitousEnglish. Archer's Noble Phantasm {{Invocation}} makes great deviations between the accurate translation from the Japanese text and the Japanese "translation" that accompanies it in the game.
* GuideDangIt: Getting the Good Ending requires Saber to have 4 or more relationship points and Rin to have less than 8.
* HomoeroticSubtext:
** The way Caster tries to break Saber shows she enjoys it a bit too much.
** Shirou is quite blunt in asking his best friend Issei to remove his school uniform. And Issei, for his part, was strangely okay with it. Coupled with Issei's general dislike of women...
* IfYouEverDoAnythingToHurtHer: When [[spoiler:Archer kidnaps Rin. Shirou threatens Archer that he'll have Saber kill him if Rin is hurt]]
* LaughingMad: Gilgamesh when [[spoiler:Shirou orders Saber to save Rin instead of helping himself]].
* MarryThemAll: [[spoiler:In the Good Ending.]]
* MementoMacGuffin: Rin's pendant, which she used to save Shirou, [[spoiler:and was also the summoning catalyst for Archer]].
* MythologyGag: Towards the end, Lancer snarks that, too bad, he would have wanted Rin as his Master. In ''Anime/FatePrototype'' we learn that [[spoiler: one of Rin's prototypes actually ''did'' summon Lancer.]]
* NonStandardGameOver: If you make the wrong choice when Rin attacks you at school, Shirou 'loses' the Grail War, but survives everything just fine and goes back to his mundane life ( minus a few memories).
* NotQuiteDead: Caster ''thinks'' she's killed [[spoiler:Kotomine,]] but Rin knows better - as she noted, Caster ''really'' [[LeftForDead should have checked the body]].
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: It is mentioned off-handedly in an intermission that [[BadassNormal Servant Assassin]] fought off Lancer, Saber, Archer, Rider, and ''Berserker'' when they approached Caster's temple. Shame we never get to see it.
* {{Polyamory}}: During route is apparent that Shirou, Rin and Saber developed strong feelings between each other and they eventually have even a shared date. [[spoiler:In Good Ending the three start living together as mutual lovers in Shirou's household.]]
* PowerAtAPrice: [[spoiler:Projection for Shirou is this. Nearly each time he projects, he hurts himself]]
* RedOniBlueOni: Rin and Saber.
* RightThroughHisPants: [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in the H-scene, when Rin tells Shirou that he's a failure as a man if he keeps his clothes on while doing it. Of course, the whole scene is being PlayedForLaughs, so...
* [[HesBack She's Back]]: When [[spoiler:Rin makes a contract with Saber.]]
* SpectralWeaponCopy: Archer's [[spoiler: and Shirou's]] eponymous Reality Marble. [[spoiler:The latter]] provides the page quote.
* SmugSnake: Caster overestimated how much she was in control of the situation. [[spoiler:Trusting Archer spelled her end.]]
* StormOfBlades: Gilgamesh, as always. [[spoiler:Shirou and Archer can also do it in this route.]]
* TakingYouWithMe: Shirou has the choice of [[spoiler:falling into the black hole to kill Gilgamesh.]]
* TeethClenchedTeamwork: Shirou and Archer really don't like each other in this route. [[spoiler:This ends when Archer betrays Rin.]]
* TemporalParadox: Archer's goal is to create one by [[spoiler:killing his past self, Shirou, so that the heroic spirit EMIYA will never come to be]].
* TheirFirstTime: Shirou and Rin have sex for the first time to transfer mana. She gets embarrassed and insists on starting before she's really ready, making the experience awkward and painful.
* ThreesomeSubtext: In the Good End, it is strongly implied that [[spoiler:Saber]] and Rin live together with Shirou in his household as a real ''Ménage à trois''.
* TitleDrop: The Noble Phantasm, "Unlimited Blade Works".
* UnspokenPlanGuarantee: To defeat Caster, Rin and Shirou decided to to fight one-on-one. What the narrative doesn't tell the player is that Rin has an... unconventional idea in order to gain the upper hand.
* UnstoppableForceMeetsImmovableObject: Lancer's Gae Bolg versus Archer's Aius, in the scene "Lance of Sure Hit, Shield of No Loss."
* VillainsActHeroesReact: This is brought up by Archer as a point of frustration with being a hero, as he feels he is merely a cleaner mopping up the mess after the damage is already done.
* VoicesAreMental: In the original VisualNovel, when Caster possesses Issei, Shirou notes that it's her voice coming out of his mouth. However, in "Realta Nua", where the voices are added in, [[AvertedTrope it's Issei's voice that comes out]].
* WhamLine: "Trace, On." Shiro's CatchPhrase [[spoiler: being said by ''[[FutureBadass Archer]]''.]]
* XanatosSpeedChess: Archer has a pretty good game of speed chess going on [[spoiler:based around the goal of getting to kill Shirou. First, a direct attack. Second, when blocked by Tohsaka he attempts to go through a loophole to kill him. Third, he then breaks his contract with Tohsaka to get away from the Command Seal. It's a lot sneakier than it sounds.]]
* YouAreBetterThanYouThinkYouAre: Shirou reassures Rin after [[spoiler:Archer betrays them]].

[[folder:Heaven's Feel]]
* AlasPoorVillain:
** [[spoiler:Kotomine dies for what he believes in. He never had a chance to be good and hates that more than anyone.]]
** [[spoiler:Zouken doesn't die until we finally see what his original motivation was: He just wanted to live long enough to see the Grail War conclude successfully so it could be used for the betterment of mankind.]]
** [[spoiler: Saber Alter, in a way, as she was forced into becoming a BrokenBird by being exposed to the Angra Mainyu. Shirou killing her is more [[MercyKill merciful]] than anything.]]
* AlwaysSaveTheGirl: In stark contrast to the other storylines, [[spoiler:Shirou chooses to sacrifice his ideal and the lives of hundreds of innocents in order to save Sakura.]]
* AttemptedRape: When [[spoiler:Sakura goes looking for Zouken in the Matou household, an enraged Shinji attempts to rape her, as it's revealed he's done this many times in the past out of spite and jealousy over her succeeding the Matou line. Sakura kills him, and as a result, she gives in to her darker self.]]
* BigDamnHeroes:
** [[spoiler:Rider]] swoops in and saves Shirou when he is cornered by Zouken and Assassin.
** When [[spoiler:Dark Sakura]] attacks the Emiya household to retrieve Illya, [[spoiler:once again, Rider, bound by the final command spell Sakura used on her,]] protects Shirou.
** In the True Ending [[spoiler:Illya appears before Shirou can sacrifice his life, and before destroying the Grail tells him it's her role as his older sister to protect him]].
* BittersweetEnding
** In the Normal Ending, [[spoiler:Shirou dies to save Sakura, who fails to move on. Illya survives, but has nothing to really look forward to (and being homonculus, she doesn't have long left to live anyway). Hundreds have died, but that list includes the antagonists, and the world is saved.]]
** The True Ending is very similar [[spoiler:except Shirou saves Sakura and survives, but he has tossed away his ideals, and Illya sacrifices her life to save him.]]
* BookEnds: [[spoiler: The first Heaven's Feel ritual began at Mt.Enzou with an Einzbern homuculus sacrificing herself to open a path to the the Grail. The fifth and last Heaven's Feel ritual takes place at Mt. Enzou, this time with an Einzbern homuculus sacrificing herself to close the path to the Grail.]]
* BrokenBird: [[spoiler:Saber post becoming Saber Alter.]]
* ButThouMust: Near the end of the route when Shirou goes to rescue Illya. When he gets there, [[ComplainingAboutRescuesTheyDontLike she refuses him and tries to make him go back]]. You are given three options on how to proceed. They are all the same.
---> 1. Bring Illya Back
---> 2. Bring Illya Back
---> 3. Bring Illya Back
* TheCameo: [[spoiler:[[VisualNovel/{{Tsukihime}} Zelretch]]]] appears in the True End of the route in order to save Rin (one of his "pupils", [[spoiler:who had used the second magic]]) from being tried and perhaps even executed by the [[MagicalSociety Assocation]].
* ChekhovsGun: Illya's explanation to Shirou of how transferring a person's consciousness works. [[spoiler:That's how she saves his soul in the True End.]]
* CherryBlossoms: Used as a sign of rebirth and new beginnings. Sakura tells Shirou that she'd like to see the cherry blossoms once spring comes around, so Shirou promises her they'll go once everything is over. [[spoiler:In the True End, Sakura, Rin, Rider and Shirou visit the blossoming trees, symbolising their happiness and renewed hope.]]
* CooldownHug: As she can't quite bring herself to deliver the fatal strike, [[spoiler:Rin gives one of these to Sakura]] at the end of their battle in "Heaven's Feel" instead.
* CurbstompBattle: Saber vs Caster. Saber [[NoSell No Sells]] the one spell Caster fires off and, with the disparity between her Strength and Caster's Endurance, her one slash winds up as a OneHitKill.
* DangerousForbiddenTechnique: Shirou is repeatedly warned that using [[spoiler:Archer's arm]] will kill him. Naturally, he ends up using it in the finale.
* DarkerAndEdgier: Heaven's Feel is this compared to the other two routes. The subject of rape, torture, dismemberment, and humans being devoured in graphic detail are all present.
* DarkReprise:
** "All the Evils of the World" that plays during the final confrontation before the Great Grail, is an ominous version of "Church on the Hilltop", which was [[OminousPipeOrgan ominous enough]] to begin with.
** "Realta Nua" has an added ominous remix of "Sword of Promised Victory" [[spoiler:Saber Alter style.]]
* EmptyShell: [[spoiler:Saber post being exposed to the Angra Mainyu and becoming Saber Alter.]]
* EnemyMine: Halfway through the route, Kotomine and Shirou have to team up to rescue Illya. Refusing Kotomine's help will result in Shirou attempting to go it alone and, upon successfully infiltrating the Einzbern castle, getting killed by the enemy Servant.
* EroticDream: Shirou dreams he has sex with Rin at some point through. It's revealed to be [[spoiler:part of Rider's powers, as she can absorb Shirou's mana through such dreams.]]
* FromBadToWorse: Things get progressively worse down the route, with barely any {{Hope Spot}}s in between. Masters lose their Servants, the Shadow keeps attacking the city, Zouken's manipulations continue to bite the heroes and the heroine plunges into even worse despair every day.
* HomoeroticSubtext:
** "[[BleachedUnderpants Realta Nua]]" replaces Shirou's EroticDream with a suggestive Rin x Mitsuzuri scene, as seen [[http://danbooru.donmai.us/data/ffc143cacc06374d8954d48e70aa0634.jpg here]].
** [[spoiler:Servant Rider's]] loyalty to [[spoiler:her Master]] and the attempts to keep said Master safe give the impression there's something more than loyalty involved.
* MementoMacGuffin: Sakura's ribbon, which was the first ribbon [[spoiler: Rin ever made, and one of the few signs of their ''true'' feelings for each other, as opposed to the apparent indifference or even outright hatred that is shown through most of the route]].
* MomentKiller: At one point, a seemingly sick Sakura begins caressing Shirou while the music from the H-scenes plays...when Saber walks in.
* MundaneMadeAwesome: Shirou meets Kotomine at the restaurant...munching mapo tofu and managing to make something so simple look [[http://orig11.deviantart.net/a48f/f/2014/284/8/0/kirei_kotomine_x_reader_mapo_tofu_by_animegirllolz-d7vth24.jpg ''menacing'']].
* NonStandardGameOver:
** The "Superhero" BadEnd where the war continues with Shirou still involved, having embraced Kiritsugu's methods by [[spoiler:disposing of Sakura.]]
** The "Sparks Liner High" bad end has Shirou fighting [[spoiler:Saber Alter]] solo and die defeating her. Even if he dies, Shirou has defeated an impossibly powerful Heroic Spirit.
* NotQuiteDead: [[spoiler:Kotomine]] grinds [[spoiler:Zouken's]] skull to dust and exorcises him, but he can reform his body later as [[spoiler:his soul is kept safe within Sakura's heart.]]
* OhCrap: Zouken and Assassin aren't particularly worried when [[spoiler:Rider]] stands against them, seeing as she had been unimpressive up to that point. They soon go into OhCrap territory when she slams Assassin's face into the wall.
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: [[spoiler:Zouken Matou]] by Nasuverse terminology is basically a magically induced vampire. His quest for immortality has caused [[spoiler:his body and soul to decay]], thus coming up against the problem all Nasuverse vampires face, causing him to seek something better.
* PaintItBlack: The ones corrupted by [[spoiler:the Shadow]] have their weapons and armour turn black and red. [[spoiler:Berserker]] mostly turns a sickly red because his skin is apparently melting off.
* ThePowerOfLove:
** Shirou's main motivation in this route. His love for Sakura keeps him going, even when he becomes [[spoiler: so brain-damaged that he forgets her very ''name.'']]
** Despite the absurd amounts of magic being flung around in the climax, it's simply [[spoiler: a hug from her big sister]] that finally breaks [[spoiler: Sakura]] free from [[spoiler: Angra Mainyu]]'s influence.
* PrecisionFStrike: Shirou's response to the idea of letting [[spoiler:Angra Mainyu be born and wrecking Sakura's life even more (in addition to pretty much destroying all of humanity)?]] "Fuck that."
* TheDayTheMusicLied: When Shirou squares off against [[spoiler:Kotomine]] for the final battle, ''Emiya'' fires up... and then Shirou gets his ass handed to him in about 30 seconds.
* ThemeMusicPowerUp: "Light and Darkness" plays during the last battle, between [[spoiler:Shirou and Kotomine]]. Or rather, ''half'' of the song plays at first, giving a tense techno beat while [[spoiler:Shirou's getting his ass kicked. It's only when he reflects on Sakura and pulls off a frenzied counterattack that the second half of the song plays]].
* ThickerThanWater: The resolution of one of the major plotlines of the route, namely [[spoiler: Rin's relation with her sister Sakura]].
* ThrowTheDogABone:
** After two routes of being eliminated first and thought to be a weakling servant, Rider gets to show that she's actually pretty powerful if not being held back by Shinji, and even ''survive the whole scenario''.
** Kind of inverted by Lancer, when you think of it. In his first route, he had a decent showing. In the second route, [[DyingMomentOfAwesome he went out with a bang]]. In this route, he has [[DroppedABridgeOnHim pretty much the most anticlimatic death]] and becoming one of the first Servants to be eliminated.
* TitleDrop: The words "Heaven's Feel" refer to two different things.
** Illya's dress for the ritual is called the third dress, "Heaven's Feel".
** The true name of the Holy Grail War ritual, whose real purpose is [[spoiler:obtaining the Third Magic, capable of materializing the soul.]]
* XanatosSpeedChess: Kotomine takes up the mantle. First, send Lancer to investigate. When he dies, use Gilgamesh to get things back on track. [[spoiler:When he dies, embrace the new situation and set up Sakura to start eating everyone. Team up with Shirou since he's easily manipulated and have him help to keep Illya safe since she's needed. Destroy Zouken so you can beat True Assassin. Sakura crushes your heart? Big deal, you'll still make it to the final battle anyway. Even when he loses, he still crushes Shirou's ideology.]]

* AdaptationExpansion:
** The manga adds [[{{Fanservice}} a short scene of Taiga in her high school days, Rin taking a shower and Souichirou Kuzuki's backstory]]. It also tends to use end-of-volume bonus stories to expand on various scenes (most often for humorous effect): showing the details of the [[CurbStompBattle 'duel']] between Saber and Taiga; telling the backstory behind the clothing Rin gives to Saber; a pre-War scene in the archery club with Shirou, Sakura, and Shinji that actually goes a long way towards explaining why anyone on Earth would ''want'' to be [[SmugSnake Shinji's]] friend...
** The [[Anime/FateStayNightUnlimitedBladeWorks Unlimited Blade Works anime]] greatly expands a number of scenes; see the page for details.
* AllThereInTheManual:
** The {{anime}} touches on elements from the Visual Novel, such as Archer's identity, Illya's parentage, and Sakura's relationship with Rin, without actually providing its own explanations. In order to understand certain elements from the Visual Novel, in turn, you may have to reference a published extra called ''Fate/side material''.
** This is doubly true for the "Unlimited Blade Works" movie, which will make about no sense as a narrative unless you have already played the "Unlimited Blade Works" route, as it squeezes many hours of gameplay into a two-hour movie. [[RuleOfCool But hey,]] [[StuffBlowingUp explosions.]]
* AnimationBump: The sheer quality and fluidity of the animation in the "Unlimited Blade Works" film is astounding, especially compared to the 2006 anime series.
** The 2014 anime series made by Creator/{{ufotable}} is much more so than both the "Unlimited Blade Works" film and the 2006 anime, even surpassing the visual standards set in the 2011 ''Fate/Zero'' anime adaptation.
* BaitAndSwitchCredits: Second {{anime}} opening, depicting Shirou and Archer facing off a la the "Unlimited Blade Works" scenario from the game.
* BattleInTheCentreOfTheMind: The anime and manga replace the mana transfer sex scene with Saber's inner dragon - the manifestation of her magic circuits - almost eating him to symbolize the transfer.
* BetweenMyLegs: At least one shot in every scene involving Rin in the movie is from this angle.
* BleachedUnderpants:
** The film, manga, and the PS2 version of the game (''Realta Nua'') replace the H-scenes that were in the original game with alternate, non-erotic versions, such as Shirou being attacked by Saber's inner dragon. The original anime adaptation alludes to Fate's sex scene with semi-erotic parts, especially Rin's pose with Saber, but otherwise follows ''Realta Nua'''s inner-dragon fight scene.
** The 2014 ''Unlimited Blade Works'' anime does the same as the above, replacing the sex scene between Rin and Shirou with ''Realta Nua'''s magic crest transfer ritual, complete with the [[MythologyGag magic dolphin]] from the first ''Unlimited Blade Works'' film adaptation.
* BloodierAndGorier: Injuries in the manga are drawn with much greater detail, and there is quite a bit more blood. One example is that although the censored H-scene in the house in the forest is more or less the same as in the anime, Shirou suffers some pretty brutal injuries while facing Saber's internal dragon. The injuries also manifest on his real-world body, which gives Rin a pretty big shock.
* CompressedAdaptation: The "Unlimited Blade Works" movie skims over days of story at a time and completely excises most of the exposition, which is somewhat inevitable when adapting what's essentially a long ChooseYourOwnAdventure book exploding with exposition into a slightly less than two hour movie. The end result is a film with somewhat choppy pacing that's completely incomprehensible to newcomers, but [[RuleOfCool has time to adequately show how epic the fights are.]]
* ConspicuousCG: What BleachedUnderpants did to the sex scenes in the anime. Saber ''has'' to have DeusSexMachina with Shirou to restore her power. In the anime instead, there's a sudden flash to a CG dragon that ''bites Shirou's arm off'', which was retained in the manga adaptation as well. "Mana Transfer Dragon" has become a minor meme as a result. There's a similar scene in both adaptations of "Unlimited Blade Works" with ''dolphins'' to replace the [[TheirFirstTime scene with Shirou and Rin that was there in the visual novel]], although this time the replacement scene it refers to is also much more toned down to begin with.
* DisappearsIntoLight: In the second to last episode of ''Unlimited Blade Works'', [[spoiler:Saber runs out of mana after destroying the Grail and disperses into motes of golden mana, following the visual novel's True Ending]].
* DramaticIrony: When trying to save Rin in the penultimate episode of the 2014 Unlimited Blade Works anime, [[spoiler:Saber almost steps in Angra Mainyu's black sludge twice. Those who have seen "Heaven's Feel" know that exposure to the black ooze is what turns her into Saber Alter.]]
* {{Fanservice}}: The movie is just less than two hours of pure {{fanservice}} to those already familiar with the Fate route and/or 2006 anime. If you haven't watched the 2006 anime or read the Fate route, the movie will make little sense, [[RuleOfCool If you have, you get to see everyone being awesome at the expense of skipping some scenes used to build the route's actual conflict]]. There's very little in the way of the other kind of service in any medium despite ''Fate/stay night'' starting its life as an {{Eroge}}, except for the occasional MaleGaze.
* GoodBadTranslation: One overly-literal fansub had Shirou saying "[[CaptainObvious People die if they are killed]]" with an ultra-serious look on his face.[[note]]This is a legitimate idiom in Japanese, usually as a statement about how tough someone is that they won't die even if you kill them, [[QuoteMine but makes little sense out of context]].[[/note]] A screenshot of this sub is now a {{meme}} when talking about bad translations and/or {{Engrish}}, even though it makes sense in context.
* HighPressureBlood: Blood seems to ooze aplenty in the "Unlimited Blade Works" movie.
* ImplausibleFencingPowers: In the movie, Shirou gains the ability to deflect many incoming projectiles by DualWielding swords for no apparent reason other than RuleOfCool.
* [[InconsistentDub Inconsistent Subs]]: Mainly because there have been several different sources of translations, either the official {{anime}} translation, the Mirror Moon's VisualNovel/FateStayNight translation, or others. This isn't normally problematic, but the terminology tends to look very different between versions.
* LighterAndSofter: The manga seems to be heading this direction. It focuses mostly on the rather idealistic "Fate" route, with Shinji of all people getting a softer side and surviving events that killed him in the VisualNovel.
* MaleGaze: All over the "Unlimited Blade Works" movie. If a scene has Rin in it, there will be at least a few shots focused on her ZettaiRyouiki for no particular reason.
* OffModel: The film shows almost none of this, although Shinji's "rape face" EvilLaugh looks less like him and more like a character from ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'' about to do something horrible.
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: In the manga, Rin and Archer come across the aftermath of a battle between Berserker and Caster at Ryudou Temple. Apparently Berserker avoided Assassin by not using the mountain gate, meaning he just ''ripped right through'' the mountain's anti-Servant barrier field. The battle itself left the Temple as kindling and the ground around it gouged with massive scars. And we get to see precisely none of this titanic conflict.
* PragmaticAdaptation: In various degrees among various adaptations.
** {{Anime}}:
** The original anime follows the "Fate" route, which by itself can't do ''Fate/stay night'' justice, but the episode/continuity limits don't allow you to do two routes and tell a coherent story. So they took "Fate", added a few scenes and events from "Unlimited Blade Works". They also threw in the odd reference to "Heaven's Feel" as well- namely [[spoiler:the revelation that Rin and Sakura are sisters]].
** "Unlimited Blade Works" film: Especially noticeable. Some of the romantic undertones between Shirou and Rin were lost, and separate visits to locations in the original got merged into a single very eventful one while things happened for different (but more easily explainable) reasons.
** "Unlimited Blade Works" anime: Acts as a sequel to the 2013 ''LightNovel/FateZero'' anime, while expanding on a few scenes and including a few {{Mythology Gag}}s to the other routes.
* PunnyName: The main theme song of ''Fate/stay night'' is "This Illusion", and when it was remixed for the {{anime}}, it's name was changed to "Disillusion". If said out loud, [[MeaningfulName they sound almost the same, while meaning the exact opposite of each other.]]
* {{Retcon}}: When the 2014 anime shows Saber performing the action she regrets the most she's wearing a dress. In the original visual novel she was wearing trousers.
* RoadCone: With three different story paths, it's only natural that adaptations of the series would leave out some things. Both the {{anime}} and (to a certain extent) the manga are based on "Fate", though the movie is based on "Unlimited Blade Works".
* RuleOfCool: The order of the day for the "Unlimited Blade Works" film. Notably, Shirou deflects both [[spoiler:Archer's and Gil's sword-bullets with ImplausibleFencingPowers rather than using his own sword-bullets as in the original route]]. In the 2014 anime adaptation he does both.
* SequelHook: The ending of ''Unlimited Blade Works'' anime [[spoiler:includes a meeting between Rin and Luviagelita Edelfelt, a character from ''Fate/hollow ataraxia'']].

* OneHundredPercentCompletion: You have to complete all three routes for the new splash screen. You can also accomplish every [[HaveANiceDeath Tiger Dojo]] for other bonuses.
* AutomaticNewGame: The game will start up at the beginning of the prologue narrated by Rin until you finish it and reach the main story narrated by Shirou, at which point you start up at the title screen.
* {{Eroge}}: Even if the {{hentai}} is hidden amidst hours of non-sexual gameplay, ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' is a full-fledged {{eroge}} with one to three/four H-scenes for each routes.
* GameplayAndStoryIntegration: [[VisualNovel While being pretty low on actual "gameplay"]], the status menu listing all the attributes and information gathered on Servants thus far is {{justified|Trope}} as being an ability granted to all Masters in the Grail War. Every master sees it in whatever way would be most comprehensible to them. [[LeaningOnTheFourthWall Shirou apparently finds RPG-like status screens most familiar despite no indication of being a gamer.]]
* HaveANiceDeath: The Tiger Dojo serves this purpose plenty of times. Taiga and Illyasviel are the hosts and will sometimes gently mock the player or make absolutely no sense. However, they will always thow in a hint about why the player reached this BadEnd unless [[WhatTheHellPlayer you did something so stupid Taiga refuses to talk to you.]]
* ItsAWonderfulFailure: Extensive {{bad end}}s exist solely for mocking Shirou's stupidity, and many [[HaveANiceDeath Tiger Dojos]] love to rub the player's choice in his face. Even if you ''did'' find the good choice and reach the end without dying, you ''have'' to eventually see all those {{bad ending}}s [[HundredPercentCompletion in order to unlock everything]].
* TheManyDeathsOfYou: The game gets very.. graphic, discussing in first person perspective, how you die or fail.
* MultipleEndings:
** "Fate" has one True End.
** "Unlimited Blade Works" has a True and Good End. Getting the Good End requires juggling around Saber and Rin's affection points.
** "Heaven's Feel" has a True and a Normal End. Which you get depends on the final choice you make.
** There are 40 {{Bad End}}s. In "Realta Nua", getting them all unlocks the Last Episode.
* StupidityIsTheOnlyOption: Found in every Type-Moon [[VisualNovel visual novel]] -- the more dangerous choice is frequently the correct one. The [[HaveANiceDeath Tiger Dojo]] sometimes [[LampshadedTrope lampshades]] this: "Go back to the previous choice and try choosing the reckless, immature choice!"
* ViolationOfCommonSense: The choices you have to make sometimes are the least sensible and immature, placing you directly in danger. Made worse by the fact that you are, almost without fail, scolded by other characters for making the idiotic choices.


* AlternateContinuity: Possibly with itself. Archer's MysteriousPast [[spoiler:is known to at least resemble the "Fate" scenario also followed by the anime, but how much is unclear]]. Essentially all routes and [[MultipleEndings endings]] are alternate continuities, with ''Fate/hollow ataraxia'' taking place in ''yet another'' continuity. Also, [[VisualNovel/{{Tsukihime}} Zelretch]] appears from an alternate continuity in one route, just to say hi. When speaking about this, Nasu affirms: "They're parallel sort of. But if Zelretch was observing, it'd become true, and my feelings on the matter is that I'd rather two routes disappear if one was true. If all of these became possible at the same time, the other routes would become meaningless."
* AnimeCatholicism: Kotomine works for the Church, [[note]] which in this case is a secret part of the actual Catholic Church[[/note]]tasked with destroying non human entities. Standard issue weaponry includes magical bible verses and thrown swords.
* CityOfAdventure: Fuyuki City, [[http://punynari.wordpress.com/2009/10/31/real-life-fate-stay-night-locations-in-kobe/ which is based on Kobe]]. However, there isn't a single character with the KansaiRegionalAccent one would expect almost everyone to have in the heart of that region.
* BigFancyHouse: A lot of them.
** The Emiya household is very big, having a main building, external building, a storehouse and a lot of free terrain (In fact, Saber even wonders about using the free terrain for growing vegetables and raising animals like chicken and pigs to always have fresh food in ''VisualNovel/FateHollowAtaraxia'', Shirou of course refuses).
** The Tohsaka mansion is very big and Rin is already used to people thinking her house is a haunted mansion.
** The Matou mansion is even bigger than the Tohsaka mansion and looks sufficiently gloomy to make it abundantly clear nothing good is going on in there.
* FantasyKitchenSink: A wide variety of legendary heroes from potentially any mythology who can be summoned as Servants. Other types of familiars, skeletal zombies, vampires, parasitic magic-devouring worms, spirits and dragons all exist in this universe.
* LegendaryWeapon: Most of the Servants' [[SignatureMove Noble Phantasms]] count. Considering the setting is based on the real world and the Servants are actually spirits of legendary heroes, a lot of them overlaps with PublicDomainArtifact.
* MedalOfDishonor: The Sealing Designation of the Mage's Association is a title of the "greatest honor" given to a magus who develops an ability that is both ground-breaking and utterly unique to their body. Those awarded this title are promptly dissected and their remains preserved for future study. Most Seal Designates choose voluntary exile in response and try their best not to attract attention.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: The decisions Shirou must make vary greatly by storyline. In "Fate" he is very idealistic; "Unlimited Blade Works" lies somewhere in the middle; "Heaven's Feel" has him become rather cynical.
* UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny: The plot is based around major figures from Arthurian, Babylonian, Celtic, Persian, Greek and Japanese myth fighting each other to the death as part of an arcane magic ritual.
* UpgradeVsPrototypeFight: OlderIsBetter makes any instance of a Noble Phantasm clashing against an older version of the same myth a one-sided battle. [[spoiler: Just ask [[WorldsStrongestMan Gilgamesh]]]].
* UrbanFantasy: ''Fate/stay night'', along with most other TYPE-MOON properties, takes place in modern Japan.

* AncientConspiracy: The [[MagicalSociety Mage Association]] and TheChurch are big in the Franchise/NasuVerse. Also, the true purpose of the Grail Wars, and to a lesser extent, the true nature of the Fuyuki Grail.
* ArcWords: "My body is made of swords." It is a phrase that appears on the first screen of the game (not counting the prologue); as the story goes on, the phrase's different meanings and its purpose are revealed.
* ArtifactOfDoom: [[spoiler:The Holy Grail.]] Due to events from the Third Grail War, it is inevitable that it will cause great calamity if activated.
* BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor: {{Discussed}}. The Holy Grail is an artifact theoretically capable of granting any wish, [[spoiler:but due to its corruption, it will grant that wish in the most destructive manner possible]].
* BettyAndVeronica: Across the whole franchises Saber and Rin frequently performs this task. Saber as Betty, Rin as Veronica.
* BigBadEnsemble: Gilgamesh, Kotomine, and Zouken are all working towards the same basic goal. While Kotomine is allied with Gilgamesh, Zouken is not. [[spoiler:Said goal is unleashing Angra Mainyu. Gilgamesh and Kotomine want to watch the world burn, and Zouken wants to use it to become immortal. Angra Mainyu wants to be resurrected by any means necessary, even attempting to use Gilgamesh as a host in ''Unlimited Blade Works'' after Shinji is rescued before its revival can be completed.]]
* BloodMagic: The runes in the ritual used to summon servants are normally drawn in blood.
* ChekhovsBoomerang: Done ''across timelines''.
** [[AntiMagic Rule Breaker]]: In "Heaven's Feel", Caster is taken out of the game early on. Since she and her Rule Breaker have played a major role in the previous route, most people put her out of their minds. [[spoiler:But then, literally on the last day of the route... her Noble Phantasm, Rule Breaker, breaks Sakura's shackles to Angra Mainyu]].
** The Azoth dagger: A [[EleventhHourSuperpower near last-minute]] addition in "Fate" that [[spoiler:Shirou uses to kill Kotomine]], shows up again in "Heaven's Feel", supposedly as a tool for Shirou to [[spoiler:project Zelretch's Gem Sword]]. However, its real importance was [[spoiler:Shirou using it to kill Saber Alter]].
** Rin's pendant: Used to heal Shirou in the prologue. [[spoiler: Archer's version of it, which he carried all his life and after (and returned to Rin in the prologue), turned out to be the catalyst for his summoning.]] In "Unlimited Blade Works", [[spoiler: Shirou returns ''his'' version of the pendant to Rin, giving the latter the final proof that Archer is Shirou's future self.]] However, in "Heaven's Feel", [[spoiler: Shirou's version of the pendant turned out to have the ''tiniest'' bit of magical energy left in it, which in the True End allowed his soul, newly-revived by Illya's sacrifice and the Third Sorcery, to hold on until Rider could rescue him. The pendant also probably anchored Shirou's soul to the material world; Rin commented that Rider "plucked Shirou out" of the rubble of the cavern ''two weeks'' after it had collapsed.]]
* ConvenientlyOrphaned: Not a single remotely major character has living parents, and several (including the main character) are orphaned ''twice over''. Not only that, but those who actually have something passing for surrogate parents would much rather that they ''[[AbusiveParents didn't]]''.
** Shirou is the sole exception to the latter. As much as Taiga picks on him and mooches off of him, his enraged reaction when [[spoiler:Caster uses her as a hostage in the Unlimited Blade Works route]] proves that he cares about her greatly.
* TheCorruption:
** [[PowerBornOfMadness Mad Enhancement]], the Class Skill of Berserkers, alters their appearance. ''Fate/Zero'' Berserker's C-class Mad Enhancement gave him fangs and lank black hair beneath his helmet, while ''Fate/stay night'' Berserker's B-class Mad Enhancement is evidently at least partially responsible for his [[{{Gonk}} strange appearance]].
** The contents of [[spoiler:the current Grail, since the Third Grail War. The Einzbern family summoned the forbidden Avenger class as their Servant, causing him to be trapped into the Grail after his defeat due to his complicated circumstance. Since Avenger embodies All the Evils of the World, the corruption takes over the Grail. As a further result of this, any Servant exposed to Avenger in his present form is tainted by his hatred and turned evil, a process known as Blackening.]]
* CrypticBackgroundReference: The events of the Third Grail War are pretty vague; pretty much all that is known is that the Edelfelts summoned good and evil versions of the same Saber and that the Einzberns summoned Avenger.
* CurbstompBattle: It takes Saber all of one slash to put Archer out of commission for over a week while he heals. Rin attempts to follow up, only to discover the hard way Saber's godlike level of AntiMagic. The only thing preventing Rin from dying right then is Shirou's order to stop.
* CueTheSun: The True End of each route usually features this as a sign of hope and new beginnings after the tribulations of the War.
* Deconstruction: The story is a very harsh (yet also optimistic) deconstruction of the concept of heroes and heroism. It also examines the concept of ideals, what it takes to change ideals, and what kind of resolve a person needs to have in order to have a will to support those ideals.
* DeusSexMachina: [[InsistentTerminology Mana Transfer Ritual]]. Sex ensues in the most inopportune times. [[BleachedUnderpants Averted in the manga, Realta Nua editions of the game, the film, and anime adaptations]].
* DoorStopper: The VisualNovel is about a million words long in English, longer than ''Literature/LordOfTheRings''. It's partly why the VN hasn't been officially released in English.
* DysfunctionJunction: Everyone's backstory involves some past tragedy that has scarred them for life and supplied them with a fatal flaw. Each heroine's route takes time to explore said flaw and eventually have her get over it, but Shirou's ChronicHeroSyndrome is what really takes center stage.
* ElementalPowers: Very exceptional ones, they are attributes linked to the "Origin", explained in ''LightNovel/KaraNoKyoukai''; Shirou has "Sword", Rin has all the basic five ("Average One"), and [[spoiler:Sakura has "Imaginary Numbers" and artificially "Binding"]].
* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: The result if the BigBad achieves his goal. [[spoiler:The Evils of Angra Mainyu would be unleashed upon humans to destroy them.]]
* EquivalentExchange: You pay for your magecraft, no matter what. True Magic, on the other hand...
* EvenEvilHasStandards: [[spoiler:Kirei Kotomine]] may be motivated solely by [[ForTheEvulz the pleasure he gets in seeing others suffer]], but even he loathes [[TheWormThatWalks Zouken Matou]].
* FoodPorn: Lengthy segments of the VisualNovel are devoted to Shirou cooking, often along with Sakura. The process of making the food is usually presented in detail.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: ''Loads'' of it, and in the most unlikely or innocuous places, too. For example, a major reveal in "Heaven's Feel" [[note]]Sakura's "training" regimen[[/note]] is foreshadowed in the Mini-Theater you get by completing all Tiger Dojos in "Fate".
* FourTemperamentEnsemble: The leading ladies of the different routes exhibit this: you have Saber as melancholy, Rin as choleric, Sakura as phlegmatic, and Illya (originally intended to be the fourth heroine) as sanguine.
* GambitPileup: The Fifth Grail War is complicated due to plots by Zouken, Kirei, Saber, Caster, the Einzbern family, [[spoiler:Gilgamesh, Counter-Guardian EMIYA, and Avenger]] all being executed at the same time. Differences between each route result in specific gambits being of more concern, and some being completely irrelevant.
* GenderBender: [[spoiler: Other than being a gender flipped King Arthur, Saber was physically turned into a male by Merlin's magic during her reign as king. This makes her a gender bender gender flip character.]]
* GodOfEvil: In "Unlimited Blade Works", we learn that [[spoiler:Angra Mainyu, the devil in Zoroastrianism, lives inside the Holy Grail and has corrupted it.]] As is explained in "Heaven's Feel" and further elaborated upon in ''hollow ataraxia'', [[spoiler:it turns out that Angra Mainyu isn't an evil god -- he's a Servant whose legend was born of a ritual where a single man was ritually sacrificed to personify all the the sins of his fellow humans so he'd absolve them by being killed. In the Third Holy Grail war, when Angra Mainyu, summoned as Avenger, was killed because he was a horribly weak Servant, the Grail identified him as a human rather than a servant and tried to fulfill his wish. Considering that the Holy Grail is an omnipotent device whose entire purpose is to seek and grant wishes and that Angra Mainyu is the personification of the world's wish for a concrete form of all evil... Let's just say it doesn't turn out well.]]
* GoldColoredSuperiority: The most powerful Servant one can summon is Gilgamesh, the King of Heroes. As the [[TheVerse The Nasuverse]] runs on OlderIsBetter, Gil is more powerful than all other heroes that came after him and naturally has gold-colored hair, frequently wears gold earrings and other jewelry, and has his infamous NighInvulnerable gold armor. It is unknown if the armor is actually ''made'' of gold but it can take a direct hit from Excalibur like it was nothing. For bonus points, his Noble Phantasm - Gate of Babylon - creates gold-colored rifts in the the sky to fire his many fantastically powerful treasures upon his enemies from.
** Saber, [[spoiler: Artoria Pendragon, aka King Arthur]], also gets this as she is said to be the strongest of the Saber class Servants, which is considered to be the strongest class, and also has golden hair. While she can be pragmatic and is utterly duty-bound, she's actually very sweet when she opens up and counts for both this and HairOfGoldHeartOfGold unlike Gilgamesh. While her sword is normally invisible as it is sheathed in wind magic, when she does reveal it the blade shines with a golden light and seems to be trimmed in gold - fitting as it is [[spoiler: Excalibur, the strongest holy sword]]. Even her old sword from her legend, [[spoiler: Caliburn]], was shown to be gold and incredibly powerful.
* {{Gorn}}: Not so much visual but mostly written, detailed descriptions of blood and heavy injuries can be found throughout the VisualNovel.
* GreaterScopeVillain: [[spoiler:Angra Mainyu, the source of the Grail's corruption]].
* TheGreatestStoryNeverTold: Shirou's actions in Unlimited Blade Works and Heaven's Feel can never be fully explained for fear of the Association's response to [[spoiler:his Reality Marble. In Heaven's Feel, the Association is told Shirou was an ordinary human who died during the War]].
* HermeticMagic: Summoning Servants and various rituals connected to the Grail and Shirou's projection magic involve runes and elaborate invocations.
* HumanResources
** The Holy Grail's power [[spoiler:comes from absorbing the souls of the heroic spirits who died in the war]].
** Servants can consume human souls in order to replenish their prana, though most traditional Spirits will find the action to be beneath their dignity and may require a Command Seal in order to do so. [[spoiler:Caster and Rider]] both resorted to this at the start of the War due to their Masters lacking prana.
* IdiotHair: Saber unless [[spoiler:she's in Saber Alter mode.]]
* InSpiteOfANail: In all three scenarios, the best possible ending has [[spoiler:The Holy Grail being destroyed. And even that probably didn't end the cycle of violence brought by the Heaven's Feel ritual, if ''Fate/hollow ataraxia'' is any indication.]]
* IntimateHealing: As usual for the Franchise/{{Nasuverse}}, sex can be used to replenish magical energy. Except in the anime, where it's {{Bowdlerized}} into the widely-mocked "Mana Transfer Dragon" in the case of Saber or "magic dolphins" in the case of Rin.
* JackassGenie: [[spoiler:Due to Angra Maiyuu's influence, the Holy Grail will twist any wish made to it in a way that will kill or hurt as many humans as possible]].
* JacobMarleyApparel: Servants will be summoned wearing the outfit they had just before their death if they had a strong attachment to their particular appearance. Otherwise, their appearance will reflect what they looked like during their prime.
* KungFuWizard: In contrast to many magi who rely exclusively on magical means of combat, the Tohsaka family have a long-standing tradition of martial arts training which can be traced all the way back to their founder.
* LateArrivalSpoiler: Many of the Servants' identities, particularly Saber's as [[spoiler:a gender-flipped King Arthur]], aren't really heavily guarded spoilers anymore.
* LimitedWardrobe: Almost everyone has, at most, two sets of clothes (typically school, armor, armor/casual, or school uniform/casual, or in Illya's case, cold-weather/normal). Other, non-standard outfits are Illya's Dress of Heaven, Rin's bedclothes, and the occasional birthday suit.
* LostInTranslation: When Illya first meets Shirou, she calls him "[[UsefulNotes/JapaneseHonorifics onii-chan]]". [[spoiler:This is fairly innocuous to both Shirou and first-time readers because addressing a strange young man as "oniisan" isn't particularly unusual. However, she ''was'' actually calling him her older brother]]. There's no way to preserve the [[spoiler:older brother/random guy]] ambiguity in English without just giving it away, so the official English translation of the anime uses "mister".
* LuminescentBlush: The three main heroines, Saber, Rin, and Sakura, all have a blushing portrait in cases of embarassment.
* MagiBabble: Hours of exposition are devoted to explaining the mechanics of FunctionalMagic in different ways.
* MagicAIsMagicA: The Nasuverse has an extensive set of rules regarding what is possible and what is not possible and how people meet the energy requirements for what they do. For example, even with magecraft it's normally not possible to make something out of nothing. Nor can the output of energy be greater than what you put into it, meaning most mages have to power their spells with the energy around them rather than the energy inside. However, once you have this sort of baseline rule, you then have people who seem to break the rules by going outside the normal system, such as the True Magics or Reality Marble users, both of which are quite unnatural.
* MeleeATrois: The Holy Grail War is fashioned as one: 7 Masters, their eventual associates, 7 Servants. To reach the end of the War and fully open the path to the Holy Grail, all 7 Servants must ultimately die. The Master's death is not required, but killing a Master is the fastest way to dispose of a Servant who doesn't have the Independant Action skill. A Servant who survives his Master's death long enough can take a new contract, and under some conditions a Master can have a contract with more than one Servant.
* MoodWhiplash: Before you enter the Tiger Dojo, [[InvokedTrope the story warns you that if you want to preserve your image of the characters, you should skip this area.]] Most Tiger Dojos are very silly.
* MundaneUtility:
** Rin's first order of business to her Servant Archer, a heroic spirit of mighty power? "Clean up this mess." The next morning, the first thing Archer does is make tea. ''Damn good'' tea, according to Rin.
** Initially, Mundane Utility is the ''only'' utility [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway Shirou's magecraft]] has. It really puts his [[TookALevelInBadass levels in badass]] in perspective when one considers that at the beginning of the story, Shirou was using his magic to... repair household appliances.
* MusclesAreMeaningless: A trope that applies to the Nasuverse in general. Almost all of the physical powerhouses rely primarily on Prana (analogous to "chi") rather than muscle to perform their physical feats; Saber's "Mana Burst" is an example of this. This is why Arcueid, who has the body of a supermodel, can inflict some the strongest physical destruction in the Nasuverse and Saber, who is a tiny woman, can keep up with monsters like Berserker. Saber demonstrates the difference between her physical strength, with and without Prana, quite clearly in the game.
** Humans are generally an exception since most do not have a whole lot of Prana, in fact, most have almost none. They instead rely on Mana (Prana is essentially Mana that is innate or internal to any specific entity), making most of the most powerful humans closer to traditional mages. Though humans tend to avoid direct physical confrontations with serious threats, it certainly does help to be physical fit for various reasons.
* OlderIsBetter: A very strongly adhered-to rule. Older magi are capable of things modern magic users can only dream of. It's also one of the reasons Gilgamesh is so powerful: he possesses the [[https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Theory_of_Forms Platonic ideal]] of almost every weapon-type Noble Phantasm that ever was or will be, meaning that they're all at least one rank more powerful than the actual versions that were used by the Heroic Spirits.
* OminousPipeOrgan: Church on the Hilltop, which is [[ObviouslyEvil Kirei's theme]] and is ''supposed'' to be a soothing church tune but its effect is rather unsettling..
* OmnicidalManiac: [[spoiler:Angra Mainyu's]] sole purpose is to wipe out all humans. That is what he's supposed to do as [[spoiler:he's all the evils of the world.]]
* PossessionImpliesMastery: One of the big themes.
** The "Riding" skill. As long as the skill is highly ranked enough, a holder can simply grab the controls of any vehicle or mount and instantly know how to operate it as if they had been for years.
** Archer does not master his [[spoiler:projected]] weapons, but can get the skill/knowledge of utilisation of a weapon thanks to [[spoiler:his re-creation of the actual creation and its history as its master used it.]]
* PowerGlows: {{Justified|Trope}}; {{Mana}} distorts reality, so strong enough amounts of it become visible to the naked eye.
* ProjectileSpell: The Gandr spell sounds like a gun, and even leaves bullet holes behind.
* TheReveal: One for each route.
** Fate: [[spoiler: Saber is really a genderbent King Arthur, and her wish is to make it so she never became king, as she feels she is responsible for the destruction of her kingdom.]]
** Unlimited Blade Works: [[spoiler: Archer is really Shirou from a BadFuture in which he turned to Kiritsugu's "kill one to save ten" ideal in order to save the world. That ideal eventually betrayed him, and Archer wishes to kill his past self because he feels his life was a waste.]]
** Heavens Feel: [[spoiler: Sakura is a failed Grail experiment and has been ''horribly'' tortured her whole life in an attempt to make a Holy Grail vessel, while the Shadow is her servant.]]
* ReusedCharacterDesign: The real-life reason behind the existence of the "Saberfaces",[[note]]Saber of Red (Mordred), Red Saber (Emperor Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus), Sakura Saber (Okita Souji), Ruler (Jean of Arc),and Grey.[[/note]] explained in-universe as them being {{identical stranger}}s, to the point of being mistaken for one another.
* SealedEvilInACan: [[spoiler:Angra Mainyu]] was sealed within the Holy Grail during the Third War because [[spoiler:the Grail identified him as human instead of a spirit.]]
* ShoutOut:
** If you listen closely to the background music whenever Shirou's TV is telling the local news, you can hear some music from ''Tsukihime'', another [[Franchise/NasuVerse Type-Moon]] VisualNovel.
** During one of the [[HaveANiceDeath Tiger Dojo]] chibis, there's a VideoGame/{{Touhou}} reference when Sakura and Rin briefly have a cute fight with each other, complete with rainbow-colored bullets everywhere and a side-shot of both of them vertically.
** The scene where we see [[spoiler:[[CruelAndUnusualDeath the worms at work]]]] is a fairly obvious ShoutOut to Creator/StephenKing's novel ''Literature/{{IT}}'', where Patrick Hocksetter dies in roughly the same way.
** The aftermath of the [[Literature/FateZero Grail Fire]] and Shirou's reaction is incredibly similar to the aftermath of the atomic bomb explosion as described in John Hersey's ''Hiroshima''.
** In the anime, Saber asks [[Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail "What are you going to do, bleed on me?"]]
** Berserker has a noble phantasm called [[Manga/{{Berserk}} God Hand]].
** The form that The Shadow takes, that of a massive tower with an enormous black hole on top of it, is uncannily similar to the [[Film/TheLordOfTheRings Eye of Sauron on top of Barad-dûr]] in the Peter Jackson trilogy.
* SpoilerOpening: In the Vita version, this applies to all three routes. Heaven's Feel's opening in particular spoils [[spoiler:Sakura being a corrupt Grail, and Saber Alter]]. The front cover of said version prematurely gives away [[spoiler:Sakura's alignment with her servant, Rider]].
* SuddenGameInterface: All Masters are granted an intuitive understanding of what's going on in the Grail War--even Shirou, who stumbled into the whole thing completely unaware. His appear as RPG-style character sheets, complete with listed {{Character Alignment}}s.
* SummoningRitual: The Holy Grail War System provides the power behing the ritual required for acquiring a Servant. The Servant will usually respond to the call if the magus has an artifact associated with him.
** The exception to this rule is [[spoiler:the Assassin class. Since the word "Assassin" derivates from the 19 original "Hassan-i-Sabah", the act of summoning an Assassin negates the need for an artifact]].
* SupernormalBindings: One of Gilgamesh's Noble Phantasms is Enkidu, a special chain that was created to restrain the gods, its strength is proportional to the divinity of their opponent, so while it can easily overpower gods, when used against normal person, it simply acts as a tough chain.
* ThemeMusicPowerUp:
** Anytime "Emiya" starts playing, you know Shirou is going to do something ''epic'' or an important battle is going to happen.
** "Sword of Promised Victory" plays whenever the Holy Sword or a similar Noble Phantasm is about to be used.
** "Into the Night" (The title music) plays when the FinalBoss is about to get a beatdown -- it's an even more reliable power-up than "Emiya".
** "Premonition of a Storm" is one of those "Shit's going down!" songs that can pump it up. Sadly, it's not in the original VisualNovel, but a new musique of the ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight Realta Nua'' version.
* TemptingFate Hoo boy, the writers love this trope. It's played with, in both a comical and a serious tone, with varying results.
* ThereCanBeOnlyOne: The very concept of the Grail War is that only one magus can have his wish fulfilled. The Grail provides the individuals who desire it with Command Spells. Things are far more complicated.
* TranslatorMicrobes: The Holy Grail acts as one. For the Servants, it implants a basic level of knowledge about the time period into which they are summoned. This prevents inconveniences such as, for example, a Servant from Ancient Greece being freaked out by cars or cellphones. Pretty convenient considering a Servant can come from across time and from any culture around the globe.
* TwoTeacherSchool: The only staff we ever see at school are Soichiro Kuzuki and Taiga Fujimura, despite the apparent size of the school.
* UnreliableNarrator: TheNarrator, Rin or Shirou, is given to making observations which are later proven false.
* WallOfText: A VisualNovel is text-based by nature, but at times the presentation bogs down with dense blocks accompanied by unvoiced, single static images.
* WeirdnessCensor:
** Not even a rumor about the war is going on, even when things that couldn't be covered up or downplayed easily (sonic booms from attacks, shining golden light shooting into the sky at a flying horse, etc) happen. {{Justified|Trope}} by a cover-up done by TheChurch and [[MagicalSociety the Magical Association]], but we never see it in action during the VisualNovel.
** PlayedForLaughs on a smaller scale, when Rin gets so angry at Shirou that she shatters her "perfect student/school idol" image in front of everyone to shout at him. Everybody stares... then go back to what they were doing, subconsciously repressing those memories to maintain their "perfect" image of her. This happens on ''two separate occasions''.
* WitchSpecies: Magic in the Franchise/{{Nasuverse}} is often genetically inherited through bloodlines. This isn't a hard-and-fast rule, though, as people from mundane families (like Shirou or [[VisualNovel/{{Tsukihime}} Ciel]]) can be born with magic circuits, and it's a plot point that one bloodline has slowly lost all of its power over generations. It's also possible to artificially create or increase magical potential.
* WithThisHerring: Pretty awesome once you think about it: Shirou's first battle against legendary hero Lancer is Lancer and his Gae Bolg versus Shirou and his... reinforced newspaper. The fact that it survives SEVERAL HITS from a legendary lance says it all.
* WordSaladTitle:
** Though the title still doesn't make much sense, one can at least find a recurring fate motif when thinking about it. [[spoiler: Such as Saber's desire to rewrite history, Archer's musings that, no matter their lifestyle, ultimately all heroes will have to face the same fate, their death, and the collapse of everything they worked for, as well as Kotomine asking the question of how much one's life is determined by inborn nature and the intentions of God.]] There is, of course, also the recurring question of why the Grail chose the Masters it did.
** This also occurs with individual scene titles, though each one makes sense [[ItMakesSenseInContext once you watch the scene]]. For example, Shapeless Island involves [[spoiler: Rider stealing Shirou's mana with wet dreams, shapeshifting into Rin]].
** In terms of unlocking the routes, the title makes an odd sense if you exclude that each set of choices has to be unlocked. ''Fate'' is there from the beginning and deals with Saber's fate, ''Unlimited Blade Works'' is the second available route and is unlocked by telling Saber to 'stay' in place and not attack Archer in their initial fight and finally ''Heaven's Feel'' is unlocked by not actively trying to fight in the Holy Grail War and 'staying' in at 'night' with Sakura.
* WorfHadTheFlu: Happens ''really'' often. There are surprisingly few battles where both contenders don't have some sort of handicap.
** Saber spends most of the ''Fate'' route recovering from two serious injuries she took from Lancer and Berserker, severely limiting her mana supply.
** Archer takes his own grievous wound from Saber in ''Fate'', resulting in him taking a back seat to recover. When he squares off against Berserker, he still hasn't recovered enough to use his trump card. In ''Unlimited Blade Works'' he has to deal with [[spoiler: not having a master and needing to conserve mana to continue existing.]]
** Lancer is being compelled by his master to only sound out his enemies instead of fighting them seriously for his early fights with Saber and Archer.
** Rider's master is extremely weak and Rider has no source of mana other than draining it from other people, leaving her incapable of using her more powerful abilities freely. [[spoiler: When Sakura becomes her master again, Rider's power jumps.]]
** Berserker loses to [[spoiler: Gilgamesh]] due to his enemy's willingness to attack Illya, forcing him to fight defensively.
** Assassin forces a decisive clash between him and Saber by blocking, instead of parrying. [[spoiler: This damages his blade, allowing Saber to defeat him.]]
** And finally, Gilgamesh only ever loses because his pride makes him hold back his full might.
* WouldHurtAChild: Used in all three routes to show how evil the route's major antagonist really is.
** ''Fate:'' [[spoiler: Kotomine]] has been using, [[spoiler: the other orphans of the Fuyuki fire,]] as living prana batteries for ten years, though "living" is [[BodyHorror entirely too]] [[AndIMustScream generous a term.]]
** ''Unlimited Blade Works:'' [[spoiler: Gilgamesh]] tears out [[spoiler: Illya's]] heart.
** ''Heaven's Feel:'' Everything [[spoiler: Zouken]] did, with regards to raising [[spoiler: Sakura.]]
''...I want to become a hero.''