[[quoteright:173:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/eightbitCast.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:173:[-[[OmnicidalManiac Black Mage]], [[DumbIsGood Fighter]], [[{{Munchkin}} Red Mage]], [[MiserAdvisor Thief]]-] ]]

->'''Red Mage''': That is ''not'' how we do things around here, buddy. First we have to argue incessantly over semantics. Then one of us has to hurt one or all of us.\\
'''Black Mage:''' [[ScrewThisImOuttaHere That's it, I've had enough.]] This whole goddamn adventure has been nothing but pointless build ups toward pay offs that ''[[{{Anticlimax}} never happen]].''
-->-- '''BlackMage''' and '''RedMage''', [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/08/05/episode-1021-open-with-a-joke/ summing up]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/21/episode-1130-so-close-yet-so-far/ the comic.]]

''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/8-bit-theater/ 8-Bit Theater]]'' is a [[BlackComedy Spite]]-er... SpriteComic by Creator/BrianClevinger that ran from [[WebcomicsLongRunners 2001 through 2010.]] Its plot, an AffectionateParody of the original ''[[VideoGame/FinalFantasyI Final Fantasy]]'', follows the four Light Warriors (who really aren't the best for the job): [[AwesomeMcCoolName Fighter McWarrior]], an [[TheDitz astoundingly stupid]] [[HeroesPreferSwords sword-obsessed]] warrior with [[DumbassHasAPoint rare good ideas]]; BlackMage [[MeaningfulName Evilwizardington]], an AxCrazy [[HeroicComedicSociopath sociopath]] who is only saved by the RuleOfFunny and a [[ButtMonkey tendency to get hurt]]; [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Thief]], a fugitive prince of elf clan [[PunctuationShaker Khee'bler]] armed with extreme greed and an expertise in [[MiserAdvisor manipulative contracts]]; and RedMage Statscowski, a so-called [[TheStrategist strategist]] who considers life to be a [[TabletopGames tabletop game]], is [[{{Munchkin}} obsessed with his stats]], and was tricked into liking [[CrossDresser cross dressing]].

Humor comes mostly from the [[SadistShow violent nature]] of the protagonists, the absurd situations they find themselves in, and [[PlayingWithATrope screwing around with videogame tropes]] (mainly {{RPG}} tropes, but others do come into play). It is one of the original {{Sprite Comic}}s, having started the year after ''{{Bob and George}}'' and long since outstripping in terms of popularity (at least partly because the latter comic ended in 2007).

It defined the dysfunctional party dynamic that would go on to fill every single other fantasy webcomic that came after it.

The site also had two {{Character Blog}}s / {{Fourth Wall Mail Slot}}s for Red Mage and Evil Princess Sara.

After nine years, two fake endings and 1,224 strips, the comic finally ended; after that last comic, Clevinger took a few weeks and wrote up [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/06/01/the-epilogue/ a long epilogue]] which was drawn by Matt Speroni of ''Webcomic/HowIKilledYourMaster''. Barring another Clevinger surprise, that should be the end of things.

----
!! ''8-Bit Theater'' contains examples of:

* AbortedArc: Played with by the author to help create the AntiClimax. [[spoiler: Each Light Warrior has an avatar of some sort trying to prepare them each for their [[TheChosenOne large and important destinies]]. However, eventually they all just get fed up and leave, unable to take all the insanity and stupidity, and none of them are ever mentioned again and don't have anything to do with how the story resolves]].
* AchievementsInIgnorance: Both Fighter and Black Belt can break the laws of physics simply through being too stupid to understand them.
** Fighter ''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/08/episode-1170-happy-landings/ blocks the ground]]'' to prevent falling damage, since he can "block anything."
** Black Belt has NoSenseOfDirection to the point where he can literally warp space-time.
* ActuallyPrettyFunny: Said word for word [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/19/episode-1129-there/ here.]]
* AdaptationExpansion: Boy ''howdy.'' The first ten minutes of the game are covered over about 135 strips.
* AdaptationalHeroism: Garland is the main villain in the original game. Here, he's a MinionWithAnFInEvil... [[spoiler: and ends up as the FakeUltimateHero.]]
* AdaptationalVillainy: Sarda.
* ADateWithRosiePalms: Possibly implied by Darko in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/01/27/episode-801-its-like-a-hobby/ this strip.]]
-->'''Darko''': What have you been doing with yourself all this time?\\
'''Black Mage''': Well the... see, y'can't... I didn't...\\
'''Darko''': You can skip the self-atrocities.\\
'''Black Mage''': '''Whew!''' I took a nap. Er, um... sinisterly.
* AffablyEvil:
** Garland, he's certainly more affable than evil.
* AGodAmI: Sarda for most of his appearances, and later [[spoiler:Black Mage and Red Mage.]]
* AllJustADream: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/12/11/episode-1070-what-were-you-expecting/ One of two fake endings.]]
* AllThereInTheManual: Red Mage's last name "Statscowski" has only been mentioned in forum posts [[WordOfGod by the author]], never in the comic itself.
* [[FoeTossingCharge Ally Tossing Charge]]: Judging by the looks of Black Mage and Fighter, Thief did this after spotting the golden chocobo in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/03/28/episode-678-skys-the-limit/ this strip]].
* AlternativeCharacterInterpretation: InUniverse, of LexLuthor, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/03/17/episode-1106-from-a-certain-point-of-view/ strangely enough]].
* AmusingInjuries: Black Mage stabbing his comrades, usually in the head.
* AnalProbing: As part of Red Mage typically not thinking through what he says.
-->'''Red Mage''': [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/16/episode-1141-how-deep-does-the-a-hole-go/ So deep are we]] (within my A-hole) that [[spoiler:Sarda]] will '''''never''''' find us no matter how thoroughly or how vigorously he probes my A-hole.
* AndTheAdventureContinues: While Red Mage and Thief decide to go do other things, Fighter and Black Mage continue adventuring because they honestly have nothing else to do.
* [[LoveMakesYouDumb Anger Makes You Dumb]]: Black Mage's intelligence is inversely proportional to one of two things: how close he is to White Mage, or how angry he is. When neither of those two factors are in play, he's the most intelligent of the group (except perhaps [[MagnificentBastard for Thief]]). [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/05/31/episode-289-a-change-of-heart/ Anger seems to obliterate all his ability to think rationally.]] This is ''really'' a problem because he has a HairTriggerTemper.
* {{Angrish}}: A RunningGag, primarily with Black Mage although others have fallen victim to it. It's usually caused by something [[TheDitz Fighter]] says or does.
-->'''Black Mage''': [[AtomicFBomb FFFFFFFFF]]--\\
'''Fighter''': [[IThinkYouBrokeHim I think he sprung a leak.]]
** Also one strip later,
-->'''Black Mage''': Arghble!
** After traveling through a poison swamp, poison tundra, and plains of poison, the Light Warriors finally return to the entrance of [[AWizardDidIt Sarda]]'s cave. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/04/20/episode-685-the-final-straw/ He immediately teleports them inside.]]
-->'''Black Mage:''' Wait one ''damn'' second. [[CouldHaveAvoidedThisPlot Could you have done that]] at ''any'' time?
-->'''Sarda:''' No, not at any time. Don't be so stupid. Just any time I ''felt'' like it.
-->''(Snap!)''
-->'''Black Mage:''' '''''YEARGHBLEBLE!'''''
** After Black Belt climbs across a rope he was holding himself:
-->'''Black Mage''': How..you..here..what?
-->'''Black Belt''': I held the rope up and walked across just like you guys.
-->'''Black Mage''': That doesn't. I mean, you can't.
** Red Mage has one, too:
-->'''Fighter''': Don't you understand? With gravity slain, we can now fly! *flies* \\
'''Thief''': Huh.\\
'''Red Mage''': But he. You can't. Love, hate, clouds. [[NonSequiturThud *falls over*]]
* {{Anticlimax}}: Brian Clevinger loves these jokes. For example, the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/06/21/episode-298-a-natural-response/ fight with Astos]]:
--->'''Black Mage''': Astos"? Mo' like, "Yo ass ''is'' toast!\\
''[[TalkingTheMonsterToDeath (Astos pauses, then falls over, dead.)]]''\\
'''Thief''': I don't think he's breathing.\\
'''Black Mage''': Well! That was easy!
** The defeat of Chaos is even ''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ worse]]''. [[spoiler:He gets killed offscreen (not even a good distance away, just ''[[BehindTheBlack barely]]'' offscreen) by one character who had been missing for a while and three characters who had NEVER SHOWN UP BEFORE THAT POINT.]] This was done to resolve a BrickJoke that had been set up ''nine years earlier.''
* AntiVillain: Garland to a ludicrous degree.
* ApocalypseCult: The cultist, being a parody of Creator/HPLovecraft's works, wants to provoke the apocalypse because it's cool.
* ApocalypticLog: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/03/03/episode-522-the-descent-into-sanity/ Parodied]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/07/25/episode-724-somewhere-beyond-the-sea-my-elder-god-stands-on-golden-sands/ twice]].
* ArcNumber: Four. Since the original ''FinalFantasy'' had 4 Light Warriors, Fiends, and orbs/crystals, the comic plays on this by adding 4 Dark Warriors, 4 "Other Warriors", 4 "true" Light Warriors--making a total of ''4'' warrior groups([[spoiler:well, five now that the "all White Mages" team has been introduced]])--and 4 patron avatars. Also, the average strip is 4 rows.
* ArmyOfLawyers: Thief's Law-Ninjas.
* ArsonMurderAndAdmiration
* ArsonMurderAndJaywalking: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/10/episode-427-its-not-their-fault/ "I traveled a thousand miles away from anything like civilization, moved into the innards of an unpredictable volcano, set up dozens of pitfalls, hell, I even put up a sign!"]]
--->'''Fighter''': ...After we brutally murdered her son, banished her husband to hell, and tore up her driveway.
* ArtifactTitle: Originally, the comic was to have consisted of a rotating series of sprite comics based on various NES-era games, hence the title ''8-Bit Theater''. As it turned out, the ''Final Fantasy'' comic was the only one that ended up actually getting made. He created [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/08/01/field-of-battle-chapter-1/ one other]] he used as filler.
* ArtShift: Happens multiple times over the course of the series, often for one panel gags: Thief sneak attacking an orc, Black Mage laughing at Thief when he thinks he's escaped his contracts forever, Black Mage experiencing the Goblin Punch, Sarda [[MindRape Mind Raping]] the Dark Warriors, whenever Black Mage contemplates the hotness of White Mage, and finally, the entirety of the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/06/01/the-epilogue/ epilogue.]]
* AscendedExtra: Sarda had a very minor role in the original game (he give you a [[PlotCoupon key item]]). His role is expanded in the comic.
* AscendedMeme: When a [[http://nuklearforums.com/showthread.php?p=941207#post941207 particular bit]] of InsaneTrollLogic took off like a rocket in the ''Webcomic/EightBitTheater'' forums, the author decided to honor it in-comic with [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/14/episode-1152-not-the-best-comeback/ the only character suited for the job.]]
* AssShove: White Mage threatens to do this to Black Mage with her ''hammer'', for what he does in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/07/11/episode-718-necronomisutra/ this strip]]. [[note]]He doesn't help matters by suggesting White Mage have sex with him on top of the corpses. TruthInTelevision, as this suggestion tends not to yield positive results in RealLife either. Don't ask how we know.[[/note]]
* AtomicFBomb: Black Mage drops one [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/03/27/episode-400-not-safe-for-work-school-or-anywhere-you-can-get-in-trouble/ here]], the first uncensored F-bomb in the comic.
* AuthorityInNameOnly: King Steve.
* AwesomeButImpractical: Black Mage's Hadoken can destroy anything, but only when he properly aims it, which never happens . One example is [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/17/episode-430-very-long-range/ here]], where Black Mage misses a volcano.
* AWizardDidIt: Specifically, Sarda, the nearly omniscient, almost omnipotent Wizard Who Did It [[spoiler:who's secretly responsible for setting the events of practically the entire strip into motion]].
** Played straight in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/01/15/episode-108-garland-just-dont-get-it/ strip 108]]
* AwLookTheyReallyDoLoveEachOther: The Dark Warriors (wrongly) assumed this [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/02/07/episode-1092-the-rule-of-three/ when they found Light Warriors]] [[ThereIsOnlyOneBed sharing the bed]]. They were so moved by what they saw that [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/02/12/episode-1093-night-of-murder/ they couldn't bring themselves to kill the sleeping Light Warriors]].
* BackFromTheDead: All four Light Warriors--and all four Fiends.
* {{Backstory}}: Red Mage spent [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/11/03/episode-915-cult-of-stupidity/ two]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/11/06/episode-916-getting-to-know-you/ strips]] discussing how important it is for a character to have a backstory.
* {{Badass}}: Fighter can ''block the ground''.
* BadassArmfold: Due to the way the sprites look, Thief after his class change and [[spoiler:Sarda]] can look like they have this.
* BadassBoast: Fighter delivered one in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/01/episode-011-the-great-black-mage-hype/ this strip]]. In a subversion, instead of boasting about his own achievements, he praised Black Mage... who wasn't happy about this.
** Fighter does make his own boast later on:
--->'''Fighter''':''' Also, I can block any attack and kill anything that bleeds.'''
** Black Mage himself [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/05/03/episode-024-shes-a-white-magic-woman/ once]] wanted to deliver a Badass Boast that would double as a pick-up line... but what he came up with was this:
---> '''Black Mage:''' '''I AM THE BLACK MAGE! I CASTS THE SPELLS THAT MAKES THE PEOPLES FALL DOWN!'''
*** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/03/15/episode-261-do-not-meddle-in-the-affairs-of-lawninja/ In a later strip]] he delivered a Boast that was played straight... until it was interrupted by Thief 'stealth-suing' him.
*** Then there was the time BM got fed up with [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/04/11/episode-683-pimp-my-bird/ Red Mage's crimes against nature]], and told him what was waiting for him in hell. The scary part? Black Mage isn't bluffing.
** Garland's attempt at giving a Boast (or rather reading out loud one prepared for him by Evil Princess Sara) failed miserably when [[NotSoImaginaryFriend Forest Imps]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/02/11/episode-116-the-ol-switcheroo/ stole the scroll with the text of the Boast]]... [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/02/16/episode-118-you-knew-hed-say-it/ thus forcing Garland to improvise]].
*** That quote is also a ShoutOut to the original game, as that line was lifted directly from Garland's actual dialogue.
** Far later, [[AWizardDidIt Sarda]] gives one:
---> '''Sarda:''' "I am Sarda. And I am older than time. I possess a power '''beyond''' mortal imagination. My plans will not be undone by such [[SophisticatedAsHell amateur-hour]] [[PrecisionFStrike horseshit]] as [[PhlebotinumOverload absorbing too much power and exploding]]. I am Sarda. [[AGodAmI My will be done.]]"
** Chaos delivers one, too.
---> '''Chaos''': "I am the yawning chasm from before the before; the darkness after the end of all things. I am nothing and no thing is eternal."
** The kicker? [[spoiler:This is his response to Black Mage asking if he could give the Light Warriors a minute.]]
* BaitAndSwitchBoss: [[spoiler:Chaos replacing Sarda.]]
* BallisticDiscount: Black mage tries the magical equivalent of this when he runs into a NoHeroDiscount at the ultimate magic shop. Unfortunately...
-->'''Black mage:''' What I learned today is that really old wizards don't get that way by being easy to kill.
-->'''Red mage:''' So you didn't get any spells?
-->'''Black mage:''' In the sense that being stabbed gets you a blade, man, I got spells.
* BatmanGambit: Sarda has been secretly making the Light Warriors stronger so that he could show them how insignificant they are when their upgrades fail to save them from his wrath. This was all in retribution for having his younger self irreversibly and unbelievably traumatized by Black Mage multiple times. And also because the other Light Warriors did nothing to stop him from doing it.
* BattleAura: Black Mage, after absorbing the evil of the fiends. Later, he lost it after destroying the Temple of Fiends. Then [[spoiler:Sarda got it.]]
** Black Mage ''again'' after he absorbed the evil of '''HIMSELF'''. (ItMakesSenseInContext)
* BattleDiscretionShot: Used many times, with the action (usually Fighter beating up a villain or Black Mage beating up a bystander) shown offpanel for comic effect, and taken to its ultimately absurd conclusion in the FinalBattle with Chaos.
* BeatPanel
* BeleagueredAssistant: Both Princess Sara and Left-Hand Man Gary to King Steve.
* BestServedCold: [[spoiler:Sarda has literally lived for billions of years to set in motion his EvilPlan to strengthen the Light Warriors so that he could kill them all at the height of their power, just to rub their insignificance in their collective face. Best served cold indeed. Though as the CosmicPlaything example indicates, he probably did not intend to have no choice but to wait that long]].
* BewareTheNiceOnes: White Mage, Fighter, and at one point, Garland.
* BigBad: Sarda.
* BiggerBad: Chaos
* BigDamnHeroes: Black Mage, Red Mage, and Dragoon each killed one of the four Fiends from out of nowhere.
* BigDamnVillains: Black Mage can generally be relied upon to throw immensely destructive magic at a life-threatening problem. ... with the side-effect that he's not very accurate and has [[NoKillLikeOverKill very limited understanding of the word "subtlety"]]. In short: the protagonists have probably reaped a higher death toll than the antagonists. Although this doesn't make moments [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/03/18/episode-396-hes-back/ like this]] any less awesome.
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler: The villains threatening the world are defeated, everybody is saved, the Dark Warriors are hailed as heroes throughout the land, and Thief manages to become the new king of the Elves. However due to the events of the comic the Light Warriors aren't given ''any'' credit for all the crap they went through and most of the group disbands with Black Mage and Fighter just disappearing and nobody knowing what happened to them (they're actually right where they were when the comic started). White Mage is trying to find a way to give them the credit they earned but it's left ambiguous if she'll succeed.]]
* {{Bizarrchitecture}}: The "new" Temple of Fiends.
* BlackAndGrayMorality: The protagonists are three sadistic bloodthirsty killers (plus a TokenGoodTeammate who's just too stupid to notice his comrades are AxCrazy)... but the BigBad [[EvilerThanThou manages to be worse!]] The only "hero"(ine) per se mostly falls under GoodIsImpotent, but wins in the end because of a nine year-old BrickJoke.
** EvilVersusEvil: In a world where the "heroes" are worse than the villains (except [[spoiler:Sarda and Chaos]]) and singlehandledly responsible for most of the world's suffering; the people in charge of things are insane, megalomaniacal, or both; and any attempts to bring any sort of peace or happiness seem to fail by default, the only thing preventing DarknessInducedAudienceApathy is seeing just how over the top the BlackComedy gets.
* BlackComedyRape: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/08/23/episode-1028-the-beauty-of-nature/ Poor Red Mage]]. Followed by [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/08/30/episode-1031-sole-food/ poor monster]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/09/02/episode-1032-damn-yankees/ exposed to Red Mage's "Animal Husbandry]].
* [[PhlebotinumKilledTheDinosaurs Black Mage Killed The Dinosaurs]]: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/17/episode-430-very-long-range/ So it seems.]]
-->'''Fighter:''' Where's ''that'' thing going?
* {{Blackmail}}: One of the 999 ways that Thief manages to rip people off.
* BlahBlahBlah
* BlockingStopsAllDamage: Fighter decides he can block damage caused by falling in the same way he would block an attack... and proves it by [[NotTheFallThatKillsYou surviving a fall at terminal velocity]] thanks to AchievementsInIgnorance.
-->'''Fighter:''' The way I figured it, the ''fall'' doesn't kill you. The ''ground'' does. So I blocked it.\\
'''Thief:''' You blocked the Earth.\\
'''Fighter:''' Why not? I can block magic and fire and all kinds of stuff.\\
'''Thief:''' I hate it when the things he says that don't make sense ''make'' sense.
* BloodyHilarious: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/05/03/episode-841-permission-to-speak-freely/ Oh yeah.]]
* BodyHorror: BM's face is of non-Euclidean geometry.
* BondOneLiner: Black Mage in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/30/episode-840-new-guard/ this comic]].
-->'''Thief:''' I don't think he heard you, BM.
-->'''Black Mage:''' He got the message though.
* BookEnds: Fighter and Black Mage are alone together, lost. Fighter ends the entire series on a BrickJoke:
-->'''Fighter:''' Y'know what we should do?
-->'''Black Mage:''' Oh, '''''this'll''''' be good. What? '''''What''''' should we do?
-->'''Fighter:''' We never did find that Armor of Invincibility...
* BoringButPractical: Feather Fall spells. Red Mage and Black Mage learn this [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/03/episode-1168-might-come-down/ the hard way]].
* BrainBleach: In-world: "I would settle for the power to stab out my mind's eye."
* BreakTheCutie: White Mage and Onion Kid, to an INSANE degree.
* BrickJoke: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/01/21/episode-651-thief-of-time/ "Hm? Oh, I stole it.]][[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/19/episode-1174-oh-thats-what/ From the future."]]
** A much more obscure example: In a [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/16/interlude-00-hes-a-fighter-not-a-webcomic-artist/ very early episode]], Brian mentions that Alabama is hell. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/03/30/episode-401-civility-before-hostility/ 350 strips later...]]
** Quite possibly one of the longest ever is set up as a throwaway gag [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/03/29/episode-010-it-had-to-happen-sometime/ in the first few panels of the 10th strip ]] only to come back [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/01/07/episode-1208-what-fighter-did/ almost 9 years and 1,200 strips later.]]
** An even longer setup: Remember that ''Magazine/NintendoPower'' magazine [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/03/20/episode-007-kamehameha-or-something/ Black Mage was reading during strip 7?]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ Neither did anyone else (beware, there be spoilers ahead).]]
*** Speaking of that setup, do you remember the "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/07/01/episode-050-time-to-say-good-bye-almost/ secret cabal of healers]]"? Or [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/12/27/episode-102-and-its-always-there-just-waiting-to-suck/ BB and WM's secret plan]]?
*** [[WordOfGod Brian]] [[http://www.nuklearforums.com/showpost.php?p=1018036&postcount=121 confirms]] that he was planning this all along. [[spoiler: When he said he had the end of the comic in mind since the beginning, ''he meant it''.]]
** Remember when [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/25/episode-020-the-quest-to-assault-the-elderly-continues/ Black Mage slaughtered a senile old wizard at a retirement home?]] 731 strips later it, apparently, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/10/03/episode-751-the-evil-that-men-write-down-with-sloppy-handwriting/ turns out he's not the only one who uses Square Summoning Circles]]
** Remember King Steve's ridiculous plans to drill for mana that always ended in ruin? Check out the article in the bottom right of the newspaper article in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ this comic]].
** Here's the ''longest'' setup in the entire comic: [[spoiler:Armor of Invincibility. Mentioned in the very first strip, only to come back in [[BookEnds the comic's very last panel]].]]
** Another one from the epilogue: In the first panel, we see that messenger that King Steve ordered to be killed, ''still'' being pursued by the guard.
*** In the same panel we can also see [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/12/episode-067-give-em-the-ol-fire-poker-in-the-eye/ an old man in the blue robe]]. And Jeff.
*** The epilogue is ''full'' of them.
*** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/12/15/episode-635-secret-ingredient/ Don't eat the Rat Tail Soup, Dragoon.]]
** Not to mention the small joke here about [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/09/07/episode-076-fighter-and-red-mage-are-back/ harsh language.]] [[spoiler:And how did they defeat Astos...?]]
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/10/18/episode-908-the-life-draconic/ Fighter theorizes the existence of the dagger shark.]] And later, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/01/26/episode-1214-the-shark-of-the-sea/ its natural mimic.]]
* BroughtDownToNormal: Sarda eventually decides to take away the Light Warriors' class changes, and revert them all the way back to level 1 as well. Except for Thief, whose past self stole his class change from his future self somehow.
** Also Black Mage when [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/03/25/episode-399-the-unbearable-meatiness-of-being/ he commands the Leigons of Hell]].
* BrownNote: Listening to any of the Light Warriors speak for any length of time can be hazardous to your health. Fighter regularly makes listeners too stupid to think (including the omnipotent Sarda), but Red Mage is almost as bad, talking with Thief for any amount of time will likely end with you having no money, and Black Mage once came out with an insult so awesome (or perhaps so lame) it killed a man.
* ButForMeItWasTuesday: "Oh, we've ruined millions of lives. They're just being babies about it."
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/28/episode-1133-pretty-obvious-really/ "Like, was this recently? Last week? A month ago? Help a guy out, will ya."]]
* ButHeSoundsHandsome: More than once, actually: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/25/episode-071-sometimes-he-should-really-keep-quiet/ Black Mage]], [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/02/28/episode-122-a-chromatic-experiment/ Garland]] and [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/06/21/episode-566-spelunkd/ Fighter]] do this while in disguise.
* ButtMonkey: [[CrapsackWorld Almost everyone]]. More specifically:
** Black Mage, though he really deserves it.
--->'''Black Mage:''' Does the universe exist only to rob me of any joy? It'd be nice to have confirmation on that.
** Fighter is frequently insulted and assaulted by Black Mage ([[IronButtmonkey but he can take it]]).
** Red Mage had his '''skeleton removed from his body''' and was later turned into a one-eyed monster (he got better).
** Thief was mauled by Berserker, had all his accumulated treasure smashed, was torched by Bahamut, and was shaken to oblivion by Muffin. And he stole his class change from ''himself'' in the future, just before Sarda got to the final part of his revenge.
** White Mage can only watch in sorrow as the Light Warriors slaughter innocents, each other, and generally ignore their "responsibility" as heroes, and that's on top of her best friend dying.
** Onion Kid's main purpose is to go through various torments that usually relate to Black Mage. [[spoiler:And become Sarda. Then get possessed by Chaos]].
** Garland went through this briefly before he founded the Dark Warriors.
** The "real" Light Warriors. Every bad thing imaginable happens to them. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/05/16/episode-696-finally-catching-a-break/ Even when they catch a break, it usually ends up backfiring.]] Barry, the only member of the group whose name we know, gets the worst of it.
** The town of Onrac is constantly getting destroyed by the Light Warriors and rebuilt only to get destroyed yet again.
* TheCaligula: King Steve, the psychotic, bloodthirsty, [[TheDitz retarded]] ruler of Corneria.
** He was drilling for mana. You can't drill for mana. YOU CAN'T DRILL FOR MANA!
*** Turns out, you ''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ can.]]''
---> "I hate this ridiculous fantasy setting."
** Not to mention that his right hand man is a coffee stain named Rodney.
*** The Dwarf King is also rather monstrous. In order to shorten the amount of paperwork the bodies of the giant monsters that Black Mage slays will bring, he has the coastal reserve murdered in front of their families and blames the event on the elves.
* CainAndAbel: Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/02/22/episode-518-iced/ murdered his own brother via an uneven room laced with knives and tiger pits.]]
-->'''Red Mage''': Wait. You murdered your own blind brother?
-->'''Black Mage''': It would have been cruel to let him live after what I did to his eyes.
** It's suggested that this wasn't the only instance. When asked if he has a sister, Black Mage says he wouldn't use present tense to describe any of his family members, while the panel shows just Black Mage talking against a bloodsplattered background.
* CallBack: "All I can tell you is that, yes, the whole point of [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/03/20/episode-007-kamehameha-or-something/ this comic]] was to do [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ this comic]] much later. I didn't intend for it to be ''nine years'' later, but around year five or so it occurred to me it had already gone from being a long range call back to probably the longest ranged call back attempted by a webcomic." --Brian Clevinger, explaining the appropriately-titled strip "Longest Set Up in Webcomic History".
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/25/episode-020-the-quest-to-assault-the-elderly-continues/ This]] was called back in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/10/03/episode-751-the-evil-that-men-write-down-with-sloppy-handwriting/ this]] in another very long CallBack, but not quite as long as the one above.
* CameBackWrong: White Mage's attempt to revive Black Belt ended horribly.
* CantCatchUp: You know how the Fiends eventually come back more powerful than ever. Remember how it was really difficult to kill the Fiends the first time around? Remember how the other Light Warriors are constantly mocking Black Mage's cowardice, ineffectiveness and [[TheChewToy large amount of bodily harm]]? [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/04/28/episode-1122-changes/ Maybe]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/04/30/episode-1123-endgame/ they shouldn't]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/05/episode-1124-king-bad-ass-of-evil-mountain/ have done]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/14/episode-1128-guns-blazing/ that]].
* CaptainErsatz: Minor character The Sulk, cameo characters [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/05/22/episode-151-excelsior/ Arachna-Dude, Alloyed-Guy and The Mediocre Four]].
* CardCarryingVillain: Excessively, especially with the Dark Warriors.
* CasualDangerDialog: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/11/26/episode-219-drowning-your-sorrows/ While]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/04/05/episode-269-sir-webs-a-lot/ this]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/02/07/episode-381-dead-hate-living/ is]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/10/28/episode-476-red-mage-in-the-cradle/ normally]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/09/05/episode-739-the-depravities-that-ended-the-century/ the]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/02/09/episode-953-heartburn/ Light]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/09/episode-1138-use-your-words/ Warriors']] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/17/episode-1173-oh-whats-the-worst-that-could-happen/ schtick]] (comic-wide spoilers!), ''hugely'' subverted with the eventual revelation that while they were ignoring Chaos and arguing amongst each other about cake, [[spoiler:White Mage and three other healers destroyed Chaos, [[AntiClimax off-panel]]]].
* CaughtWithYourPantsDown
* CharacterDevelopment: Deliberately averted with the Light Warriors, who never really learn a lesson and never improve upon their flaws. The closest they get to development is that over the course of the series they start to treat each other ''slightly'' less horribly than they did at the start. And even that gets flipped on it's head a lot!
* CharacterizationMarchesOn: Drizz'l was initially portrayed as [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/04/05/episode-269-sir-webs-a-lot/ stupider than Garland]], but has since become a StraightMan for the sake of the Dark Warriors having at least ''one''.
* ChekhovsArmoury: And HOW! Have a look around this page for examples.
* ChekhovsGun: 'Longest Set Up In Webcomic History'. In comic 7, there's a throwaway joke when Black Mage is reading a strategy guide. [[spoiler:"Four White Mages? It'll never work!"]] In the end, Chaos is killed by [[spoiler:White Mage, Shaman, Priest, and Healer.]]
** Not quite as big a setup as the prior one, but the dialogue in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/26/episode-434-wouldnt-you-like-to-know/ this]] comic returns to [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/19/episode-1129-there/ haunt us.]]
* ChekhovsGunman: The Onion Kid is just a CosmicPlaything who's there for laughs, right? '''DEAD. WRONG.'''
* ChekhovsSkill: Zig-zagged. The Light Warriors each pick up a skill when they class change. Thief uses his throw ability several times, and while Fighter only uses his block ability once, it's an important factor in his confrontation with [[spoiler:Black Mage]]. Red Mage never effectively uses his Mimic ability, and Black Mage never picks up any useful spells.
* CherryTapping: The first attack to hit [[PhysicalGod Sarda]]? Bikke throwing the Water Orb at him. It didn't do much, but it was the only time anyone (besides himself) was able to do ''anything'' to him.
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Remember Queen Jane?
* ComedyAsAWeapon: Black Mage kills [[spoiler:Astos]] using bad puns.
* CompensatingForSomething: After [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/02/27/episode-254-elven-envy/ hearing Dr Malpractice]] making AccidentalInnuendo Black Mage, Red Mage and Fighter briefly wondered whether this trope applies to them.
* ComicallyMissingThePoint : Among other examples--[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/11/11/episode-481-black-belt-walks-into-a-bar/ "Man, she must like me a LOT!"]]
** Not surprisingly at all, the point is something that Fighter comically misses on a frequest basis. From [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/09/13/episode-329-peaceful-transfer-of-power/ Episode 329]], right after Thief says he is leaving the group and Black Mage appoints himself the new leader:
-->'''Red Mage:''' You know, Fighter and I have superior numbers. We could overthrow your demented regime easily.\\
'''Black Mage:''' We can do this one of two ways. The easy way...or the excruciatingly painful death for Red Mage way. I suggest the former, m'self. You're welcome to ''try'' the latter of course, but I assure you it's a wasted effort. You are up against a knife-wielding {{sociopath}} just ''looking'' for an excuse to hurt you even if he has to make one up.\\
'''Fighter:''' Surely this maniac will slaughter us all!\\
'''Black Mage:''' If given half a chance...\\
'''Fighter:''' He doesn't know we're ''here'', does he?!
* ConflictKiller: Happens again...and again...and again during the end game.
* ConnectTheDeaths: When Light Warriors rampaged through Dwarves' kingdom, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/11/18/episode-354-its-funny-to-hurt-the-innocent/ Thief took the opportunity to spell out a message to Dwarves]] (the intended recipients didn't realize that, though).
* ContinuityNod: All over the place in the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue. [[RunningGag Elite Guard Hank is still chasing the messenger.]] The Dark Warriors' Restaurant contains the heads of the werewolves encountered by the Light Warriors early on in the comics run, as well as one of Garland's motivational posters, Dr. Malpractice, the fake prince, Princess Sara, Left Hand Man Gary and the Sulk. The menus in the restaurant have options like [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/10/episode-1003-not-up-to-code/ Twelve Dragon Nachos,]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/03/09/episode-670-gettin-tchaikovsky-wit-it/ Goblin Punch,]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/12/13/episode-634-you-were-right/ Rat Tail Soup,]] Orbs of Water and foods named after the Four Fiends. Some law ninja are visible outside of Thief's palace. Akbar is still in business in whatever town we see Fighter and Black Mage in. He also appears to be selling [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII Cloud's Buster Sword]] -and- [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII Squall's gunblade]]. Also in the town are [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/03/episode-828-backfired/ the legitimate businessman and his lackey,]] and a cultist. Fighter is equipped with his regular swords and some swordchucks [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/05/24/episode-286-the-gangs-all-here/ named Stabby and Slashy]]. Finally, the entire series ends with [[spoiler:a reference to the Armor of Invincibility.]]
* ConversationalTroping: About the UltimateShowdownOfUltimateDestiny--Black Mage and Red Mage discussed who would win in a fight between Batman and Dr Doom, as well as in a fight between Green Arrow and Bullseye. Several hypothetical matches were also discussed in the column "Twinkin' Out with Red Mage".
** Black Mage and Thief [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/03/17/episode-1106-from-a-certain-point-of-view/ once]] passed time (while Red Mage was burning behind them) conversing about AlternativeCharacterInterpretation of LexLuthor, with Black Mage suggesting that he is actually the hero of the DC universe.
* CoolButStupid: Every character except Fighter is aware of how stupid an idea sword-chucks are. They work perfectly anyway, thanks to White Mage making it slightly less dangerous.
* CoolSword: In Fighter's opinion, every sword is cool.
* TheCorruption: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/07/15/episode-720-a-lesson-is-learned-but-the-damage-is-going-to-take-forever-to-clean-up/ It's]] strongly implied that ''Black Mage himself'' is this and that his presence is the reason that the other Light Warriors (excluding [[TokenGoodTeammate Fighter]]) behave like they do.
* CosmicPlaything: Black Mage, White Mage, and just about everyone else in the comic, at the hands of the nigh-omnipotent Sarda. In turn, Sarda is himself a ''victim'' of it thanks to the Light Warriors, in a wonderful example of TimeTravel inspired recursive causality.
* CosmicRetcon: Sarda does this a few times to Black Mage, using his magic to alter Black Mage's protests into acceptance.
** In addition to that Sarda once did a {{Rewrite}} [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/06/26/episode-300-the-house-always-wins/ on a much bigger scale, supposedly by accident.]]
** When Black Mage tries to do the same thing, the end result is causing Sarda to add "you moron" onto what he was originally saying.
*** Considering that Sarda personalizes his spells, the spell Black Mage cast was likely "Rewrite Reality According to Sarda's Wishes".
--> '''FFFFFFFFFFFF--'''
* CrapsackWorld
* CrashIntoHello: This is how Black Mage met both Fighter and White Mage.
* CrazyEnoughToWork: Every single plan Red Mage has ever come up with. Occasionally they do. They culminate in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/01/29/episode-1215-so-stupid-its-brilliant/ this]], which doesn't quite work out.
** Fighter's tend to work the same way. Emphasis on the ''work'' part.
* CreativeSterility: Elves.
* CripplingOverspecialization: Most of Sarda's spells are designed to only work with a specific target in mind. Subverted, because this was used in order to prevent Blue Mages from using his spells against him. Played straight by Black Mage, who by way of PowerCopying has learned "Spell that hurts Black Mage" and the "rewrite reality according to my (Sarda's) whim" spell.
* CrouchingMoronHiddenBadass: Fighter is dumber than a bag of rocks, but he's also a practically unstoppable swordsman.
** And Bikke, [[TheDitz useless though he may be]] at piracy and villainy, is the first person in the comic to actually hit ''Sarda'' with an attack. A useless attack, granted, but it impressed Sarda enough to spare him...for now.
* CrowdedCastShot
* {{Crunchtastic}}: Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/06/23/episode-567-paralinguistics/ once]] concluded that his hatred of Fighter is so great that there is no word strong enough to express it. So--with Red Mage's help--he made up a new one: ''omniloathe''. Obviously Fighter [[CompletelyMissingThePoint missed the point]] and was overjoyed that he and Black Mage had "got best buddy codewords now".
* CrushKillDestroy: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/07/06/episode-438-makin-friends/ Crap! Piss! Kill!]]
--> '''Red Mage:''' Tell me that's '''not''' a declaration of intent.
* CurbStompBattle: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/09/30/episode-464-victory-for-some-doom-for-others/ Light Warriors vs. Kary's minions.]] Later [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/17/episode-834-world-war-rock/ Black Mage vs. M.A.R.T.A.N.s]] [[spoiler: and even later [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/04/30/episode-1123-endgame/ Black Mage vs. four Fiends]].]]
** Even later, Black Mage against [[spoiler: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/09/episode-1126-impasse/ White Mage]], [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/12/episode-1127-invincible-sword-technique/ Fighter]] and [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/14/episode-1128-guns-blazing/ Thief]].]]
* CuttingTheKnot: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/15/episode-612-mind-over-matter/ "My brain said this was faster."]]
** Black Mage also makes a reference to the TropeNamer when [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/08/07/episode-450-knot-my-problem/ confronted with a door unlocked by a puzzle written in a language of 379 consonants and four vowels that makes reference to a value existing before time itself]]:
--->'''Black Mage:''' Okay. I seem to remember some old dead king guy who, when faced with a problem of unsolvable perlexity, would blaze a path to victory via stabbity means. ''(draws knife)'' Therefore!
--->''([[SubvertedTrope TINKTINKTINKTINKTINKTINK]])''
--->''([[DoubleSubverted CREEEEEK]])''
--->'''Black Belt:''' Hey, I heard you knocking. Come on in. It's toasty.
--->'''Black Mage:''' [[MST3KMantra I am comfortable with taking full credit for the feat of entrance because then I get to ignore how or why he is here.
* CycleOfRevenge The Light Warriors go after Sarda for torturing them, who's after the Light Warriors because Black Mage ruined his childhood, and Black Mage likely commits his acts of evil because the universe hates him, which is frequently due to Sarda's influence, who tortures Black Mage because of the aforementioned ruined childhood, and so on. A very literal cycle, considering Sarda is "stuck" in a StableTimeLoop.
* DamselInDistress: Averted. The damsel in question has been distressed so many times, she's picked up a few things, and helps her captor.
* DarkIsNotEvil: The [[CardCarryingVillain Dark Warriors]] are much less of a threat to the world than [[NominalHero their counterparts]]. (As much as Garland tries, he's really too much of a softie for true villainy.)
* DeadpanSnarker: When Black Mage isn't in a state of temporary insanity [[note]]read: state of bloodthirsty [[KillThemAll Kill-Them-All-ness]] while trying to take out everyone in a hundred-mile radius[[/note]], he is ''incredibly'' snarky and sarcastic, particularly about the frequent flaws in logic and common sense that all the other "Light Warriors" seem oblivious to [[note]]read: too stupid to see, or [[BystanderSyndrome just ignore]][[/note]]. And the more he gets annoyed and frustrated, the more bloodthirsty and less clever he gets. So you know when Fighter makes a cleverer quip than Black Mage that there is going to be a lot of destroyed real estate in his vicinity.
* DeathSeeker: Following Black Mage's takeover of hell, and hell subsequently kicking him out, he's very happy whenever he's about to die because he knows he'll be able to take over hell again.
* {{Defictionalization}}: [[http://www.nuklearforums.com/showthread.php?t=36835 Real-life]] SwordChucks.
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/03/04/episode-256-one-backstab-after-another "Meanwhile, in the royal room of royalty..."]]
* DestructiveSaviour: That is, when they're saving. Which is quite rare these days.
* DetectivesFollowFootprints: Fighter shows off his tracking skills by describing the footprints he's following. [[spoiler:They're his and Black Mage's own trail.]]
* TheDevTeamThinksOfEverything: Sarda uses what he refers to as your typical "rewrite reality according to your will" spell. When Black Mage copies it, it turns out to be a "rewrite reality according to ''Sarda's'' will" spell instead.
** Also, when Sarda makes Black Mage puke his own intestines out, BM tries to cast the spell back at Sarda. It turns out that Sarda created a spell with the specific description of "Make Black Mage puke his guts out".
* DiabolusExMachina: Personified in Sarda.
* DidYouJustScamCthulhu: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/01/06/episode-1079-verbal-flanking/ Thief outwitting a trickster god.]]
-->'''Raven:''' Oops.
* DisguisedInDrag: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/01/16/episode-237-light-warriors-queens-of-the-desert/ Upon crashing into female barracks.]]
* {{Dissimile}}: In [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/17/episode-1006-too-many-dragons/ this strip]]:
--> '''Gas Dragon:''' Y'know how most dragons have firebreath attacks? Well, it's like that. Only [[{{Gasshole}} it's not breath]]. And there's no fire. But it ''will'' [[{{Fartillery}} feel like you're roasting alive]].
* DisqualificationInducedVictory: Played for laughs when Fighter comes last in a drownball tournament (due to not drowning) but is still given first prize (due to being the only surviving participant).
* DistractingDisambiguation
* TheDitz: King Steve. Bikke, too. Fighter is a ''[[SubvertedTrope subversion]]'' in that he's actually the most effective and competent of the Light Warriors.
--> King Steve: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/19/episode-1206-the-royal-treatment/ "Now, how about those sno-cones."]]\\
Black7 Mage: "What is this?"\\
KS: "It''''''s no cone!'''''"\\
Thief: "It's a '''''cube'''''."\\
KS: "Oh, no. That's a '''''common''''' misconception. It's a '''''stube'''''."\\
Thief: "A what?"\\
KS: "The seven-sided cube. I invented it."\\
BM: "There are only six sides."\\
KS: "The '''''seventh''''' side is the '''''in'''''side."\\
(BeatPanel)\\
Thief: "[[DumbassHasAPoint He's got us there.]]"
* DividedWeFall
* DontExplainTheJoke: Red Mage does this a lot when no one laughs at his jokes. Of course, this just makes things worse...
* DoomyDoomsOfDoom: Apparently, Doom comes in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/01/episode-1198-spellmart/ Light Doom, Greater Doom, and All The Dooms Of The Rainbow]].
* DroppedABridgeOnHim: The Other Warriors
* DualWielding: Fighter and Drizz'l. Then taken to ludicrous extremes when Fighter begins quadruple-wielding through sword-chucks. Scary part is, it ''works''.
** That's nothing. Ranger can quad-wield ''bows'', to fire twelve arrows at the same time!
*** Considering he was wielding them against [[AGodAmI Sarda]], it didn't help.
* DudeWheresMyRespect: Invoked by Thief in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/03/15/episode-820-interview/ this strip]].
-->'''Red Mage:''' This is why I keep insisting that Thief shouldn't conduct these interviews.
* DumbassHasAPoint: Every so often, Fighter will say something genuinely insightful.
** [[DoubleSubversion Double subverted]] in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/10/05/episode-752-its-all-fun-and-games-until-everything-dies/ this strip]].
* DumbIsGood: Fighter. Or perhaps it's "Dumb isn't absurdly selfish, utterly disconnected from reality, or an OmnicidalManiac." Dumb is ''relatively'' good.
* DungeonBypass: Black Mage once completed the [[DeathCourse obstacle course]] consisting of '''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/12/02/episode-358-qualifications/ four hundred bearded trials of strength]]''' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/12/04/episode-359-flawless-victories/ with a single Hadoken]].
-->'''Black Mage:''' Obstacle course? Mo' like Ka-Boom course.
* DyingDeclarationOfHate: Thief delievered one to Black Mage when BM turned on his teammates late in the series.
* DysfunctionJunction: [[http://forum.nuklearpower.com/showthread.php?t=13920 From the man himself]]: "I'm not sure why the Light Warriors worry about obstacles or monsters standing in their way. They are nothing compared to the obstacles and monsters ''within'' the party."
* EarlyBirdCameo: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/06/26/episode-300-the-house-always-wins/ Episode 300 shows the party after they've changed class]], something they wouldn't do for more than 300 more comics. The picture of the Light Warriors at the top of this page is the panel from said comic that the cameo occurs in.
* EatMe: Unintentionally done by Red Mage to Kraken.
* EldritchAbomination: Ur and the Eye-stalk.
* ElvesVsDwarves: Exaggerated; Thief, like all elves, despises dwarves to the point of wanting to see every last one of them killed. This makes his rampaging march through their kingdom much more enjoyable for him. The dwarves, for their part, would love nothing more than to see the ''elves'' all killed off.
* EmoTeen: Vilbert.
* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/04/01/episode-133-if-you-did-see-it-coming-you-might-be-psychic-joke-comic/ One of the comic's fake endings.]] It's also the ultimate goal of Black Mage and, apparently, of Chaos as well.
* EpicFail:
-->'''Thief:''' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/17/episode-430-very-long-range/ Not that I'm complaining about it, but...]] ''[++[[color:red: HOW DO YOU '''MISS''' A VOLCANO?!]]++]''
* EveryoneCallsHimBarkeep: Parodied, since the Light Warriors' original classes ''are'' their real names, and remain so even after they change classes.
* EveryoneIsJesusInPurgatory: In-universe example--In the Castle of Ordeals, each character fought a personification of his greatest flaws, symbolically overcoming them (or at least, that's what they were ''supposed'' to do...). The final ordeal was to symbolize the team uniting to become more than the sum of their parts and transcend individuality and whatnot. When the final ordeal turns out to be "defeating a zombie dragon", Red Mage complains that the boss doesn't fit the theme.
-->'''Red Mage:'''I fail to see the significance of a zombified dragon vis-a-vis our externalized struggles with our own internal demons.
-->'''Fighter:''' Maybe the bone dragon represents our ''skeletons''. Those are inside of us. Like skeletons.
* EvilCannotComprehendGood: The {{Villain Protagonist}}s, Thief and Black Mage in particular, are not only confused by Good, they are confused by [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/02/08/episode-806-relief/ any plan which does not include murder or theft]]. And apparently, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/11/22/episode-1063-post-emptive-strike/ they cannot comprehend why the Other Warriors don't hate each other, either]].
** When Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/05/29/episode-423-not-so-apt-pupil/is told by Sarda that "there cannot be power without sacrifice"]], he takes it to mean he must make a HumanSacrifice... and does so with his "allies" (it didn't stick). Then Sarda tells him that Black Mage must be ''close'' to that which is sacrificed... so Black Mage slaughters them ''again'' (still didn't stick), and Sarda says that the sacrifice must ''mean'' something to Black Mage (who again misinterprets it as the sacrifice being the ''means'' to an end). Once Sarda [[TimeStandsStill stops time]] to spend ''seven hundred years'' trying to explain it to Black Mage, he finally says that Black Mage must ''care'' about what is being sacrificed... which completely stumps Black Mage.
* EvilChancellor: "It's an Elven court. It's ''all'' Viziers and they're ''all'' assholes."
* EvilLaugh: Sarda's "muhuhaha".
** He pulls off an absolutely epic one [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/08/15/episode-1163-the-best-medicine/ here]].
* EvilMentor: Sarda.
* EvilSorcerer: Black Mage
* EvilVersusEvil:
** Except for [[DumbIsGood Fighter]] and [[OnlySaneMan White Mage]]
** WordOfGod confirms that "no matter who wins, the villains win." Though in the end it was one of the few more or less "good" characters, White Mage, who won.
* EyeBeams: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/11/13/episode-353-last-one-i-swear/ Used by Black Mage]] to annihilate one of the Dwarves' cities (and to piss off Red Mage).
** He also uses them to destroy Fighter's dreams [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/07/01/episode-302-that-was-a-mistake/ here]].
* ExactWords: Sarda's spells run on this principle. The spell he casts to hurt Black Mage is a spell that ''hurts Black Mage'', regardless of who is casting it, as Black Mage learned the hard way when he learned it via Blue Magic.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: Used for humor, especially with character names. The four protagonists most obviously, but also [[MorallyAmbiguousDoctorate Doctor Malpractice]], [[EvilChancellor Chancellor Usurper]], and many others...
* {{Expy}}: Chaos is a transdimensional, extratemporal demon of the void that emerges from Sarda's head and threatens to undo the universe, just like the Shadow from Beyond Time in Clevinger's own ''ComicBook/AtomicRobo''.
* FaceHeelTurn: Black Mage has attempted to team up with antagonists five times throughout the story, though as he points out, "that'd imply there existed a time I wasn't on team Evil."
* FacingTheBulletsOneLiner: Thief: "My only regret is that I didn't hate you '''more'''."
** Also, Onion Kid, being faced by a barrage of arrows. [[DoomMagnet "Guess I ran out of parents."]]
* FamousLastWords: [[spoiler: "I am Sarda. [[AGodAmI My will be done.]]"]]
* FanFiction: A FinalFantasy fanfic no less.
** In-universe example: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/08/13/episode-586-this-is-for-like-three-of-you/ apparently Fighter writes]] Franchise/StarTrek / {{Transformers}} {{crossover}} fanfics.
* FantasticRacism: See ElvesVsDwarves above. The elves also have a lowered perception towards humans, basically anything that isn't an elf.
* FakeUltimateHero: ZigZagged [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ with.]] [[spoiler: Black Mage, Thief, and Red Mage were pretending to take the credit for destroying Chaos, [[DefiedTrope so in order to prevent that]] White Mage [[InvokedTrope set up the Dark Warriors]] as "The very real Light Warriors"]]
* FastballSpecial: The ''Fighterdoken'' attack.
** As well as Fighter's ''Medoken''. However that works.
* FateWorseThanDeath: Sarda's pretty much decided that killing the Light Warriors over and over again isn't as fun after dozens of times. So he's pretty much decided to just let them do whatever they want and only make life miserable for them when he's bored. This is subverted, however, because the Light Warriors actually prefer it to certain death.
** Also, Chaos' plan for the world is to lock everyone in the plane of eternal torment between the worlds. Which, due to Sarda and White Mage's time traveling, would create a paradox where [[RetGone the universe will never have came into being]]. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/17/episode-1185-paradox/ Chaos apparently wants both to happen]], somehow.
** Also, [[spoiler: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/01/22/episode-1085-hardly-knew-ye/ Berserker's fate]] and presumably [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/01/24/episode-1086-shit-just-got-realer/ Cleric and Rogue's unknown fates]].]]
--->'''Cleric:''' What does that mean?
--->'''Sarda:''' It means there's not much point in talking about him.
* FauxAffablyEvil
** Black Mage, on those occasions he's not consumed with omnicidal rage. He's been known to discuss [[WhoWouldWin super hero deathmatches]] with Red Mage (in which it can be noted that Black Mage always picks the villain to win while Red Mage always chooses the hero of the matchup). [[invoked]]
** Chaos.
* FeigningIntelligence: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/14/episode-1152-not-the-best-comeback/ Red Mage has degrees in "escapology" and "escaponomy". Both are in his handwriting. Doesn't mean they're not degrees though!]]
** In an earlier strip Red Mage and Black Belt [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/09/25/episode-334-car-talk-and-retribution/ pretended to know anything about repairing airships]].
* FinalBoss: Although it's revealed that the Light Warriors are the worst thing in the world, Chaos.
* FiveManBand: Thief is arguably TheLeader, Red Mage is TheLancer, Black Mage is TheSmartGuy, Fighter is TheBigGuy, White Mage is TheChick, and Black Belt is the SixthRanger.
* {{Flanderization}}: Black Mage used to be at least selective about what he stabbed and/or nuked. Now he just kills everything at all times. Also, Fighter has gotten considerably dumber over the years, where he was once just kind and easy to trick in the early comics. However, given the number of times he's been stabbed in the head, this might technically count as CharacterDevelopment.
** Also, Red Mage's cross dressing and "animal husbandry" have become the [[IncrediblyLamePun butt]] of jokes centered around him.
* FlatWhat: Black Mage and Sarda use this more often than the rest of the cast. And once more by Lich, after Black Mage's NotNowKiddo moment.
* FluffyTheTerrible: The "parrot" (dragon) Muffin.
* ForgotToFeedTheMonster: Bikke's pirate crew and Thief's Lawninja all suffer from the neglect of their masters.
* ForbiddenChekhovsGun: Red Mage's [[KurtVonnegut Ice-9]] spell takes away all the heat in the universe. It's cast inside a BagOfHolding that he's just stuffed Kary into (along with all the riches that Thief stole), theoretically putting her [[IncrediblyLamePun on ice]] until the Light Warriors have sufficently leveled up. However...
-->'''Red Mage:''' We've locked Kary in an inescapable prison where she will remain until such time as we are powerful enough to defeat her. Quite simple.
-->''an [[AndThisIsFor enraged]] White Mage [[DropTheHammer crushes]] the bag and its contents to bits''
-->'''Red Mage:''' ...or there's that.
-->'''Thief:''' ''(having just seen "more riches than actually exist" destroyed)'' can't...''gasp!''...breathe...
* {{Foreshadowing}}: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/26/episode-434-wouldnt-you-like-to-know/ Episode 434]]. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/19/episode-1129-there/ Five years later...]]
*** Less cool than the above but [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/01/21/episode-651-thief-of-time/ Thief's class change]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/19/episode-1174-oh-thats-what/ 523 chapters from the future]].
** Remember the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/07/30/episode-062-weird-philosophical-tangent/ original task]] the Light Warriors were given? Well, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/06/episode-1181-of-loyalty/ 1119 chapters later...]]
*** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/03/20/episode-007-kamehameha-or-something/ "Four white mages? It'll never work...]][[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ Oh, goddammit it [sic]."]] Yes, that's over 1200 strips and nearly nine years' worth of foreshadowing.
** Another, slightly more subtle, example...[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/03/09/episode-125-its-not-surprising/ Red Mage sure is smart.]]
** Easily missed, but [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/01/episode-011-the-great-black-mage-hype/ Fighter has no idea how right he is. Probably.]]
* FourIsDeath: The Four Fiends, though this could be applied to the Light Warriors themselves.
* FranchiseZombie
* FreakyFashionMildMind: Garland, possibly Vilbert.
* FromACertainPointOfView: Any claim that Brian Clevinger ''isn't'' a LyingCreator hinges on these. Just see the justifications below.
** In comic, a fairly common joke is for characters to have to grant a point for being technically true, such as Fighter having never seen an invisible castle due to them being very rare, or Black Mage not needing his heart to pump blood if he's dead.
* FunnyBackgroundEvent: Used a few times. There is, for example, Black Mage trying to ask White Mage out in the second half of [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/29/episode-435-hes-a-fighter-not-a-diplomat/ this strip]] or Red Mage's battle with dragon in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/08/26/episode-455-self-fulfilling-stupidity/ this one]].
* GainaxEnding: Faked.
* GambitPileup: The second Temple of Fiends arc.
* GeniusDitz: Arguably Red Mage, who, despite being obsessive about stats and whatnot, occasionally makes good (enough) plans. Fighter might be too, since he has a Bachelor's degree in dead, completely overcomplicated languages (not verbatim).
* GenreSavvy: Thief to some extent. His attempt at using the TheoryOfNarrativeCausality to blackmail Muffin, for example.
** Red Mage believes that he lives in an RPGMechanicsVerse, so naturally he is very genre savvy about RPG tropes. His attempts at using his knowledge of tropes in practice are occasionally successful; however, [[WrongGenreSavvy usually they aren't]].
* GISSyndrome
* GlassCannon: Black Mage is one of these, and [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/04/10/episode-977-moving-as-hell/ in one comic refers to himself with that exact phrase]], before [[{{Metaphorgotten}} getting a little weird with the metaphor]].
* GoldfishPoopGang: A rare real-life example--if the ConRecap news posts are to be believed (from all three parties), then Clevinger, [[CtrlAltDel Tim Buckley]] and [[DominicDeegan Michael "Mookie" Terracciano]] have all the trappings of one.
* GoMadFromTheRevelation: Surprisingly invoked on ''[[spoiler:Chaos]]'' of all people, when White Mage points out that [[spoiler:a universe completely ruled by entropy would be as dull and boring as a world completely ruled by order.]]
** When the Light Warriors discover that Matoya and Bahamut are going out. Let's just say that Black Mage tries to choke on his own vomit and leave it at that. And no, [[NoYay the disturbing imagery]] [[BrainBleach will never leave you, either.]]
--->'''Black Mage:''' Oh, god. Now I'm ejecting things I haven't eaten yet.
* GoodAngelBadAngel: Parodied--when Black Mage faces a moral dilemma (whether he should let Fighter die or let Fighter die '''and''' destroy all of reality in the meantime) two miniature versions of himself that appear [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/08/14/episode-186-everyone-has-a-good-side-sorta/ represent his evil side... and his atrociously evil side]]. ([[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/11/16/episode-770-mage-vs-self-vs-worse-self/ The distinction blurs a little more every day, though]].)
* GoryDiscretionShot: When any huge explosions or impacts occur, the panel in which they would happen is replaced with stock photos of nuclear blasts (or in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/17/episode-834-world-war-rock/ one case]], of an asteroid impact). Also, when BM solves problems through stabbity means, all we see is blood [[TheFourthWallWillNoTProtectYou splattered on the fourth wall]]. Both are [[BloodyHilarious hilarious]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/03/20/episode-007-kamehameha-or-something/ when you]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/12/episode-832-character-is-what-you-are-in-the-dark/ actually]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/03/11/episode-671-kick-off/ see them]].
* GroinAttack: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/03/09/episode-670-gettin-tchaikovsky-wit-it/ "Inna NERTS!"]]
* GrandfatherClause: Like ''{{Bob and George}}'', only in regards to ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyI''
* HandBlast: Black Mage's blasts.
* HandPuppet: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/07/04/episode-716-we-built-this-city-on-rock-and-roll-and-mortar-and-bricks-and-cobblestones-wood-too/ Fighter has one of Black Mage]].
* HarmlessVillain: The Dark Warriors.
* HeWhoFightsMonsters: [[spoiler:Sarda.]] For all his talk about how horrible the Light Warriors are, he's just as bad (well, as bad as Red Mage and Thief). He kills off the [[spoiler:Other Warriors, not to mention Ranger's wife]] over what he knows is a simple misunderstanding.
* HealingShiv: The TropeNamer; Cleric used one to bring Thief back from the brink of death.
* HeartIsAnAwesomePower: The demons of urine and bad haircuts [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/26/episode-1009-demon-stration/ give Black Mage nightmares]].
* HeelFaceTurn: Drizz'l briefly joins the Light Warriors, although this is due more to frustration with the Dark Warriors' incompetence and being voted off than a change in morality. Then again, the Light Warriors are not exactly pillars of morality. In fact, when Black Mage was on their team, the Light Warriors were more evil than the Dark Warriors.
** Princess Sara is arguably an example of this, at one point taking over her own kidnapping and trying to help Garland dispose of the Light Warriors, who have come to rescue her. However, after Garland is defeated, she returns to her previous life and does not continue to pursue the evil path to any noticeable degree.
** Black Mage, despite being a "hero", almost pulls these a few times, but something always distracts him back to his own ways before long.
* HeelRealization: The Light Warriors persist in believing they're heroes until [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/26/episode-1132-whos-the-end-boss/ Sarda finally clues them in on the truth]].
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/15/episode-1204-chew-on-that/ Jammed in their faces]] again (although they still don't realize it).
* HehHehYouSaidX: "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/08/08/episode-1160-game-face/ That's enough boobery for now.]]"
** Earlier; "You mean booby traps." "Heh heh..." "Oh, real mature, man!"
* HellSeeker: Black Mage wants to get to Hell to rule it. He succeeds... for a very brief time. Once he gets returned to mortality he tries to dig his way back.
* HeroesWantRedHeads: White Mage--although Black Mage isn't much of a hero. Also, White Mage seems to have a thing for Fighter, who is also red haired.
* HeroicBSOD: Black Mage after watching Fighter use his new "Wood-in-steak".
--> '''Red Mage:''' Years of exposure to Fighter's, shall we say, point of view, has rendered Black Mage a sputtering vegetable.
* HeroicComedicSociopath: Black Mage; Red Mage and Thief to a lesser extent (although not that much less).
* HighlyVisibleNinja: Thief's law ninja, who wear bright red.
** But not Thief himself, who has [[{{Retcon}} never worn red or imagined himself as a ninja wearing red]].
* HighPressureBlood: Violent spurts of red liquid are the usual bleeding.
* HighVoltageDeath: Black Mage electrocutes a group of old men to death in an old folks home with a Bolt 2 spell just for the [[ForTheEvulz sake of killing them]]. Well he also wanted to find an old man that took their gold, but he makes it pretty clear prior to that that he's mostly going there to cause mayhem, and only asks someone about the gold ''after'' he kills them.
--> '''Black Mage''': ''Eat electric death old man!!!''
* [[HiredGuns Hired Sword and Occult Magic]]: Black Mage's comment in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/15/episode-016-the-quest-to-assault-the-elderly/ this strip]] implies that this is what he and Fighter were before the events of the comic.
* HoldingOutForAHero: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/05/08/episode-843-the-superman-complex/ Discussed]].
* HonestJohnsDealership: Used straight by Akbar, totally subverted by Jeff.
* HorribleJudgeOfCharacter: Fighter.
--->'''Fighter''': We're heroes.
* HughMann: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/03/episode-1000-i-cant-believe-someone-was-asshole-enough-to-make-1000-sprite-comics/ Here;]]
-->'''Black Mage:''' Oh, Lord. Why does the robot [[PaperThinDisguise have a mustache?]]\\
'''Warmech:''' I grew it with my human lip. \\
'''Red Mage:''' Is... is that a fact?\\
'''Warmech:''' Oh yes. I love to grow hair all over my body in between acts of defecation.\\
'''Thief:''' Well he ''sounds'' human.
* HybridMonster
* HyperspaceMallet: The WeaponOfChoice of White Mage, used when Black Mage ([[spoiler:or Kary]]) sufficently [[BewareTheNiceOnes pisses her off]].
* Hypocrite: [[spoiler: Sarda]]. In the end, he's little better than Black Mage.
* HypotheticalFightDebate: Black Mage and Red Mage argue on who would win between Batman and Doom, and between Bullseye and Green Arrow.
* IgnoredEnemy: "You shut the '''goddamn hell up''', super-monsters."
* IgnoredEpiphany: Black Mage has had a few, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/05/31/episode-289-a-change-of-heart/ this]] being the most notable. Later, he becomes DangerouslyGenreSavvy enough to fake having an Epiphany.
* IllogicalSafe: Played with, only with an armoire instead of a safe falling on Fighter. Fighter emerges from the middle of it and Red Mage launches a convoluted explanation that states that Fighter survived because his knowledge of CartoonPhysics warped reality itself. Then Fighter reveals that the bottom just was cheap particle board.
* ImpossibleThief: Thief can steal anything that's not on fire and nailed down at the same time. Emphasis "'''and'''" and "'''anything.'''"
-->'''Thief:''' I've stolen things that weren't even ''there''. This soul exists, so that helps.
* ImpossiblyCoolWeapon: The sword-chucks are impossible, even in this world.
** [[http://www.nuklearforums.com/showthread.php?t=36835 Not anymore.]]
*** Holy crap, the sword-chucks are ON FIRE. That's oneupmanship for ya.
* ImprobableWeaponUser: Fighter has his Sword-Chucks, and no less than four swords on his person at any given time. And then there's this line:
--->'''Fighter''': "''You'' try balancing a cow on the end of a fence post to wield it like a club. ''That's'' a physical damn challenge!"
* IncrediblyLamePun: Fighter searches for the Armor of Invincibility and ends up with the Armoire of Invincibility by mistake.
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/10/31/episode-763-going-for-the-hi-score/ Fighter likes to play Breakout.]]
*** Actually, it was supposed to be [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/10/21/episode-759-space-invaders/ Arkanoid]].
** "He must be in Ur base. Killing all Ur dudes." (WordOfGod [[http://forum.nuklearpower.com/showthread.php?p=439508#post439508 states that]] the character was named Ur ''just'' for the sake of that joke.)
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/07/22/episode-443-whats-ur-sine/ "I couldn't bear my role in it."]]
** Because he's a vampire, the only way to kill Vilbert is with a wooden stake through the heart. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/01/22/episode-375-thinking-outside-the-box/ Fighter proceeds to rip one of the posts off of a wooden fence, impale a cow on it]], and then [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/01/24/episode-376-four-hundred-pounds-of-flavor/ burn it to a crisp]]. Why? Because he now has wood in steak. It's worth noting that the pun is so lame it actually causes Black Mage to go temporarily insane. Er.
** After deciding to break the three Light Warriors who aren't Black Mage out of their icy prison, Drizz'l comes up with an idea that he knows he'll hate himself for after it works. He tells this joke: "How do you get 200 Canadians out of the pool? [{{Beat}}] Say 'Please get out of the pool.'" The ice shatters and Thief asks what he just did. "I... broke the ice..."
* IneffectualSympatheticVillain: Drizz'l.
* InfernalRetaliation: The [[strike:crime boss]] legitimate businessman encountered by Light Warriors after they became "a city guard" had a rather delayed reaction to being set on fire.
** On the other hand, Red Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/02/05/episode-951-when-life-gives-you-firelemons/ attempted to invoke this trope]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/02/12/episode-954-nonviolent-solutions-to-stupid-problems/ and failed miserably]].
* InformedAttractiveness: White Mage (thanks to it being a sprite comic, of course) although there was [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/05/03/episode-024-shes-a-white-magic-woman/ an attempt to show it when she was first introduced.]]
** We see her in the epilogue. She's quite cute.
*** And stacked. It takes the last strip to show what Black Mage was talking about. Easily seen when White Mage is walking with Thief.
*** There's also [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/01/06/red-white-and-robo/ a wallpaper with a picture of her]] drawn by Matt Speroni, who also drew the aforementioned epilogue, and approved by Clevinger.
* InnocentInnuendo: Red Mage seems to be able to make anything sound like a double entendre.
* InsaneTrollLogic: Almost every plan that Red Mage makes up runs solely on this. He has once claimed that [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/01/15/episode-942-cross-eyed-traffic/ his plans were more likely to succeed, due to the fact that they were less logical, and thus, logic wouldn't screw them up.]] You can't unread that.
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/11/10/episode-1189-back-in-action/ Black Mage has gotten in on the action, too.]]
** Ranger's reasoning after 2 of the 4 members of his party have been erased from existence.
-->'''Rogue:''' This is an alarming trend.
-->'''Ranger:''' Is it? Only people who aren't us have disappeared, Rogue. Should this pattern continue, we ought to be fine.
-->'''Rogue:''' Why does that make more sense than I think it should?
** Sarda's reasoning for sending the "Light Warriors" on their journey is [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/04/episode-1136-that-is-not-a-predictive-model/ shaky as hell.]]
** The comic is so filled with this that the LogicalFallacies [[Quotes/LogicalFallacies quote page]] has a whole section dedicated to ''8-Bit Theater''.
* InstantChucks: SwordChucks
* InsultBackfire: Clevinger, in keeping with his philosophy that the best joke is the one on the reader, wrote a comic that ended with the entire strip AllJustADream, as a fake NoEnding. Rather than the cavalcade of abuse he expected from pissed-off readers, he got ''fan mail'' complementing him on writing the [[GainaxEnding perfect ending]] for his [[DeconstructorFleet comic]]! Needless to say, he was peeved that his master plan was ruined by kindness.
** He seems to have tried it again [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/21/episode-1130-so-close-yet-so-far here]]. And again, after the initial shock, the readers began to compliment him, calling him a ''MagnificentBastard''.
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/12/12/episode-100-white-mage-makes-it-all-better/ In-universe example]]:
--->'''Black Mage''': Yo.\\
'''White Mage''': You are simply a horrible little monster and I pray for your quick and merciful death.\\
'''Black Mage''': Flirt!
* InsurmountableWaistHighFence + AnEconomyIsYou: in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/08/episode-1201-the-thing-about-wizards-is/ strip 1201]], "These are the prices and like a fence or short hedge, there is nothing you can do to get around that."
* InterspeciesRomance: Bahamut and Matoya, Ranger's complex heritage.
---> '''Fighter''': So that's where earthquakes come from.
* InTheLocalTongue: Drizz'l is mocked for his goofy-sounding name, until Thief tells them it actually means "The Relentless Scourge." Black Mage still mocks him anyhow.
* IronicEchoCut: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/05/01/episode-023-enter-magic-shop-guy/]]
* IronicHell: After being severely beaten by Berserker, Thief ends up in his personal Hell where he owns everything. Thief is overjoyed... until a trickster god called Raven points out to him that there's nothing left to steal in this Hell. Realizing that, Thief starts begging the god to revive him. [[spoiler:However, it's revealed later that Thief didn't actually die--Berserker only knocked him unconscious--and his personal Hell was probably an illusion created by Raven who wanted to take advantage of Thief's desperation.]]
** The real hell too.
---> '''Head Hell Guy''': This is hell. We're big on irony here.
* IronButtmonkey: Fighter and Black Mage--the former is repeatedly stabbed in the head with no ill effects (it made him smarter once), while Black Mage more or less always survives what's thrown at him (the Goblin Punch and Australia come to mind) and when he's killed, he gets brought back in fairly short order [[FateWorseThanDeath so as to continue suffering]].
* ItsAlwaysSunnyInMiami: This trope is used in this work, as it never gets dark until the characters enter the inn.
* IWillShowYouX: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/14/episode-1152-not-the-best-comeback/ In this strip]].
--> '''Sarda:''' That's adorable, really.
--> '''Garland:''' Oh, we'll show '''you''' adorable!
--> ''(shows Sarda a photo of a bunny)''
--> '''Sarda:''' Yes, you sure did.
* {{Jerkass}}: Thief, Black Mage, Sarda.
* {{Jossed}}: Silenced all the EpilepticTrees regarding [[spoiler:Black Belt's]] possible return with the appropriately titled, "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/11/10/episode-622-now-shut-up/ Now Shut Up]]".
* KarmaHoudini: [[spoiler:The Light Warriors (especially Black Mage), after all the atrocities they commit, ultimately escape any kind of punishment. The only upside is that White Mage keeps them from stealing the credit for all the good things they DIDN'T do... by making sure it goes to the Dark Warriors.]]
** [[spoiler:Well Black Mage seems to be destined to forever wander the world with Fighter, who he hates, but can't kill or otherwise get rid of in any way.]]
*** [[spoiler:Plus, Sarda de-leveled them all, so none of them have the skills they used to terrorize the world before.]]
* KidWithTheLeash: surprisingly enough, this trope is applied to Thief and Black Mage. Black Mage is a [[HeroicComedicSociopath violent sociopath]] easily able [[PersonOfMassDestruction to cause ridiculous amounts of mass-destruction]], and whose gut reaction to any situation is a cross of KillEmAll and KillItWithFire. Thief may be a ManipulativeBastard whose idea of morality is as flexible and self-rewarding as any one of his contracts, but at least he can ''control'' (or at least direct) a lot of Black Mage's indiscriminate destruction. If he's not there to lead the group, Black Mage tends to take charge and things tend to go downhill pretty damn quick. The fact that Thief can contain Black Mage using a fraudulent contract is a mark of [[MagnificentBastard Magnificent Bastardry]].
** A good part of Thief's control over Black Mage involves the fact that [[spoiler:prior to absorbing his SuperpoweredEvilSide, at least]] Black Mage is ''terrified'' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/01/13/episode-502-technical-mumbo-jumbo/ of him.]]
--> '''Red Mage:''' I can't believe 'Thief' was the moral compass that kept us from becoming a pack of roving murderers
* KillItWithFire: The Light Warriors' solution to most anything, really.
** While looking for excuses to kill dwarves-
--> '''Thief''' Beard-shaped parasites are eating thier faces!
--> '''Black Mage''' Burn them all and let the fire sort it out!
* KilledOffForReal: Black Belt.
* KleptomaniacHero: Thief will steal ''everything'' from your house regardless if it's nailed down or not.
* KnightOfCerebus: [[spoiler: Black Mage, having subsumed the power of the Elemental Fiends and now since killed White Mage and possibly Fighter and Thief.]]
** [[DefiedTrope Now since knocked off his horse]] thanks to [[spoiler: Sarda intervening.]]
* KnowsAGuyWhoKnowsAGuy: Rogue has "I know a guy" as his catchphrase. One of said guys is even Thief.
* LampshadeHanging: Lots of it.
* LastOfHisKind: Red Mage and Dragoon. [[ThereCanBeOnlyOne Muffin wants to be]], but when pointed out there are a fair number of dragons still out there despite her claims, she grudgingly admits she wasn't quite as thorough as she'd like.
** Barry of the real Light Warriors is apparently a Red Wizard, meaning that Red Mage is either wrong or lying for roleplaying EXP. Knowing him, it's likely both simultaneously.
* LeaningOnTheFourthWall: Black Mage and Fighter in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/10/12/demo-01-unwisely-pissing-off-the-fanbase/ this strip]].
* LetterMotif
* LetUsNeverSpeakOfThisAgain: Said word for word by Black Mage after the [[NoodleIncident nightmare-poison-induced shenanigans]] that resulted in the Light Warriors waking up stark naked in the woods.
* LevelDrain: Happens to the Light Warriors near the end of the comic.
-->'''Sarda:''' The irony is that there's not much left for me to do to you that you haven't already done to yourselves.\\
[...]\\
'''Thief:''' Pff, what could he ''possibly'' do?\\
'''Black Mage:''' Oh... please don't say that out loud.\\
'''Thief:''' No, think about what he said. We're Light Warriors, dammit. I bet he ''can't'' hurt us any more than we hurt each other every day.\\
'''Red Mage:''' Thief kinda has a point. We're our own worst enemies. What can ''he'' do?!\\
'''''POIT!'''''\\
''(The Light Warriors are reduced in levels and class)''\\
'''Red Mage:''' ''(turns to Sarda) What if'' I said it was a rhetorical question?
* LevelGrinding: After being [[spoiler:deleveled by Sarda]], the Light Warriors must engage in a frenzy of this in order to (maybe) stand a chance against Chaos
* LeyLine: Mentioned as running through the land. It is stated that Black Mage is a living Nexus.
** It's not just that Black Mage is a living Nexus personified, but that apparently his mind/soul ''itself'' is the Nexus, such that his physical body acts as a RestrainingBolt. Hence when he dies and gets rid of his physical body, ''his powers increase'' (vis a vis [[spoiler: RULING OVER HELL)]]. He is ''not'' happy that the universe is trying its very hardest to keep him alive (probably so he doesn't end all creation.)
* LightIsNotGood: For a group of "heroes" called "The Light Warriors", they are probably the world's greatest mortal perpetrators of atrocities. Sarda flat out tells them this. Then again, the Light Warriors only got the title by tricking King Steve with their "Orbs of Destiny", which were in fact light bulbs, and the Real Light Warriors were unable to find a job.
* LightningCanDoAnything: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/08/21/episode-883-its-not-quite-brain-surgery-either/ Including making Fighter smart.]]
-->'''Thief:''' "I think you '''''stabbed''''' the stupid out of him."
-->'''Red Mage:''' "That makes no scientific sense. The knife channelled the lightning directly to his brain which then experienced electrical activity for, perhaps, the first time ever."
* LimitedSpecialCollectorsUltimateEdition: Parodied by the "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/01/31/8-bit-theater-1-gold-foil-embossed-collection-edition/ 8-Bit Theater #1 Gold Foil Embossed Collection Edition!]]", which is only a "lame" {{Filler Strip|s}}.
* LinearWarriorsQuadraticWizards: Although by the 1000 comic mark, Fighter can block anything in creation (including fire and ''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/08/episode-1170-happy-landings/ the ground]]'') and Thief can steal anything in creation, they still aren't anywhere near matching the raw destructive power that Black Mage has access to. Red Mage is a special case because although he can instantly mimic Black Mage's attacks when they are used on him (for about 30 seconds afterwards), his wizarding skills in general are not geared towards brute force but practicality (well, what ''he'' thinks of as practicality). The best example of this trope, though, is Sarda, who gets phenomenally more powerful the older he gets. Anyone even want to ''know'' what Black Mage and Red Mage are going to be capable of if they exist that long?
* LivingCrashpad: "You're standing on my kidneys..."
* LogicBomb: Red Mage uses one to kill a dinosaur. He tries it again while confronting his own Hubris, but it doesn't take.
* {{MacGyvering}}: [[NoodleIncident We'll never know how he did it]], but Red Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/08/16/episode-320-extrications saved the day]] with [[NoodleImplements a portable hole, an immovable rod, a bag of holding, and an ice spell]].
* MadeFromRealGirlScouts: The Giant Cannon.
* MadeOfExplodium: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/01/18/episode-504-tis-a-good-question/ this strip.]] Lampshaded brilliantly by Black Mage.
* MadeOfEvil[=/=]EvilGod: Black Mage. You can't really describe him as anything else other than the ElementalEmbodiment of Evil. When he goes to the Castle of Ordeals, each warrior has to face the physical embodiment of their worst flaws in order to overcome them. Black Mage's physical manifestation is himself. Because there is nothing more evil out there. However, when he keeps remembering the increasingly evil things he has done, the manifestation starts to shake reality. See [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/20/episode-614-escalations/ here]] and the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/18/episode-613-mirror-master/ comic before it]].
* MagicAIsMagicA: If Sarda devises a spell to hurt you, he devises a spell to hurt '''you''', as demonstrated by Black Mage several times.
* MagicVersusScience: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ The comic ends]] with a newspaper declaring the "very real Light Warriors save the world!"; next to the picture of the Dark Warriors, there is an article about a mana vein which baffles scientists.
--> "I hate this ridiculous fantasy setting"
* MathematiciansAnswer: Having been jumped on repeatedly by both Red Mage and Dragoon, we have this exchange.
--> '''Black Mage''': Now, if Jumpin' Jack Ass and Red Moron are done, we DO have a quest to finish up.
--> '''Thief''': Since when do you care about quests?
--> '''Black Mage''': Since it's a convenient excuse to butcher Sir Hopsalot for revenge.
--> '''Dragoon''': You mean Red Mage or me?
--> '''Black Mage''': '''YES'''.
* MesACrowd: "I was right. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/12/23/episode-1075-would-you-believe/ That didn't make sense.]]
* MeaningfulName: Other than Black Mage's last name, Evilwizardington, there are characters with names like [[EvilChancellor Chancellor Usurper]] and Doctor Malpractice.
** Just about everyone's last name.
* MedievalStasis: The Elves, as pointed out by Red Mage despite having a 9,000 year start are at the same technology level as humans. Thief, at a loss for a proper explanation tells them that they like it that way.
* MediumAwareness
* {{Metaphorgotten}}: Used constantly. Especially for Black Mage, whose metaphors tend to take very [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/02/22/episode-518-iced/ disturbing]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/16/episode-1220-hypothetical/ turns]].
* MindRape: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/21/episode-1154-epilepsy-warning-no-seriously/ "So, was that a goat or...?" "Y'know, I've never asked."]]
* MixAndMatchCritters: "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/04/10/episode-406-and-badger-snakes/ I'm sorry, no I won't take it. If we accept orc zombies, then we open the gate to all kinds of crap. What's next? Centaur dragons? How about demon fairies? Maybe buffalo elves? Heck, why not whale vultures?]]"
* MoodWhiplash: Compared to both preceding and succeeding strips, the strip about Black Belt's (first) death [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/10/16/episode-471-first-attack/ is surprisingly serious.]]
* MoralityPet: Fighter to Black Mage for all the good it does. This leads to many instances of KickTheMoralityPet.
* {{Multishot}}: Parodied by Ranger.
* {{Munchkin}}: Red Mage.
* MundaneUtility: parodied and played straight at different times. Mostly with Black Mage's [[NoKillLikeOverkill ridiculously powerful magic]].
* MyFriendsAndZoidberg: Sarda makes it clear that ItsPersonal for ''three'' of the Light Warriors. [[GuiltByAssociationGag Fighter's a casualty]].
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/05/31/episode-289-a-change-of-heart/ Fighter]], of course.
* NiceJobFixingItVillain: If [[spoiler: Sarda hadn't [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/21/episode-1130-so-close-yet-so-far resurrected Black Mage's victims]] after his rampage]], then the actual ending of the comic could never have happened.
* NinjaPirateZombieRobot: Fighter's idea of combining swords and nunchucks.
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/04/08/episode-405-lets-face-it-hed-starve/ Orc Zombies]]
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Earlier strips had King Steve serving as a George W. Bush parallel, though done in an extremely [[RefugeInAudacity over the top]] Strawman representation (drilling for Mana in wildlife preserves, father also a ruler, bit of a warmonger, and low popularity).
** The "father also a ruler" part is justified. He's a KING.
*** Though, ironically, King Steve himself doesn't know that.
* NoFourthWall: In [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/03/24/episode-531-time-for-a-new-space/ this]] strip, the Light Warriors can see themselves as in the comic. Even Black Mage comments on something he says at a later point. Justified, since they're in void where space and time are meaningless.
** Red Mage often leans very heavily on the FourthWall. Considering he's a {{Munchkin}} this isn't much of a surprise (his entire order lives on the basis of manipulating the FourthWall). When he does say something with a meta-context expect Black Mage (if he's currently not in possession of the [[SanityBall Insanity Ball]] and trying to kill everything in sight) to remark on it with either suspicion or frustration.
* NoKillLikeOverkill: Black Mage. He likes summoning the raw powers of the universe to do his bidding (apparently). This usually comes (also apparently) with a malleable sense of scale... as in "off of the". As a running gag, his love of killing things in as over-the-top a fashion as possible often leads to his attacks backfiring on him (luckily for him, he learns Feather Fall eventually).
--> '''Black Mage:''' I found out what zombies are weak against.\\
'''Red Mage:''' Oh?\\
'''Black Mage:''' Point blank annihilation.
* {{Nominal Hero}}es: The Light Warriors.
-->'''[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/11/15/episode-920-we-could-be-heroes/ Red Mage:]]''' According to a loose enough definition of 'hero', we qualify. Well, more or less. The point is that good deeds were '''done''' and '''we''' were nearby.
* NonCombatEXP: Discussed by the [[LightIsNotGood Light Warriors]]--Apparently, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/08/02/episode-180-headin-to-pravoka/ sidequests are the primary source]] of an adventurer's EXP gain, and are what separates noble adventurers from roaming bands of thugs.
* NonSequiturThud: Black Mage in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/04/17/episoe-409-corrective-measures/ this strip]].
* NoodleIncident, NoodleImplements: Using ([[InterchangeableAntimatterKeys up]]) a portable hole, an immovable rod, a bag of holding, and an ice spell to escape from an exploding [[CoolAirship Deathtrap]], then [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/08/16/episode-320-extrications in the same strip]] [[InventoryManagementPuzzle requiring]] a portable hole, an immovable rod, a bag of holding, and an ice spell to get Black Mage out from under a Giant.
** In the Field of Battle series, "I have no idea what that means, and that only makes it worse."
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/02/20/episode-1221-longest-set-up-in-webcomic-history/ "Because you weren't here when White Mage, Priest, Shaman, and Healer KILLED Chaos."]]
*** "Oh goddammit [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment it]]."
* NoOneCouldSurviveThat: Basically said in more words by Red Mage in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/01/episode-1167-what-goes-up/ 1167]]. [[spoiler:[[GenreBlind Of course]], Sarda survived.]]
* NoOneShouldSurviveThat: Fighter, all the time (much to Black Mage's chagrin). So much that the other Light Warriors count on him somehow being able to survive random situations.
** Black Mage also qualifies. Among other examples, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/06/09/episode-856-its-a-shadow/ Sarda dropped Australia on him]] and he survived.
---> '''Red Mage:''' Where's he going?
---> '''Sarda:''' To hurt.
*** Qualifies as an IncrediblyLamePun, since he is sent to Hurt, Australia.
** Don't forget when Sarda locked Black Mage perfectly still while the rest of the universe kept moving, shifting him outside the cave. Of course, all the other molecules kept moving and shredded him at a sub-cellular level, but Sarda kept him alive out of spite.
---> '''Black Mage''': Huh. I think I'm insane now.
* NormallyIWouldBeDeadNow: Red Mage subverts this by being not a {{Determinator}}, but by forgetting to record how much damage he takes.
* NoSenseOfDirection: Black Belt, and to a lesser extent, Fighter.
* NotEvilJustMisunderstood: Fighter [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/09/episode-1138-use-your-words/ believes]] that Black Mage is/was this. He is, of course, [[MadeOfEvil comprehensively]] [[ForTheEvulz wrong.]]
* NotNowKiddo: Black Mage is guilty of this on several occasions. A few times to Fighter, but once to Lich, while he and the rest of BM's party discussed the plan to kill Lich's son, Vilbert. Right in front of Lich. And Black Mage didn't even bother to look at Lich while he said that.
* NotTheFallThatKillsYou: Done in one of the weirdest ways possible.
---> '''Fighter:''' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/08/episode-1170-happy-landings/ The way I figured it, the fall doesn't kill you. The ground does. So I blocked it.]]
---> '''Thief:''' I hate it when the things he says that don't make sense '''make sense'''.
** Earlier, after being shot to Dragoon's flying island, Thief avoids crashing via DoubleJump. Meanwhile, Fighter [[StoneWall crashes but tanks the damage]], Black Mage casts Feather Fall, and Red Mage... just crashes horribly. And then [[GeniusDitz a healing potion he left behind in midair crashes on]] ''[[GeniusDitz him]]''.
* NumberOfTheBeast: "Tonight's Lottery Numbers are 6-1-6!"
* ObfuscatingStupidity: Garland is clearly an idiot. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/01/02/episode-790-its-where-the-powder-comes-from/ Right?]]
* OceanMadness: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/07/25/episode-724-somewhere-beyond-the-sea-my-elder-god-stands-on-golden-sands/ Played with]].
* OddJobGods: The demons of urine and bad haircuts. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/26/episode-1009-demon-stration/ Who are far more dangerous than ones of pain, darkness, and anger]].
* OddNameOut: During the DisguisedInDrag scenario, the Light Warriors went by the names of Thiefica, Fighterina, Black Magia, and... Debora.
* OffhandBackhand: Thief does it to Dr. Malpractice [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/02/22/episode-252-wham-bam-thank-you-thief/ here]].
* OffscreenMomentOfAwesome: An intentional DoubleSubversion. The climactic fight with Chaos is [[BattleDiscretionShot shown offpanel]] to keep the identity of who defeated him secret as long as possible. Then comes a {{flashback}} sequence in which we see that scene, only to have the battle skipped over a second time.
* OhCrap: The look on [[spoiler: Sarda's]] face just before undergoing PhlebotinumOverload is priceless.
** Also [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/10/16/episode-907-animal-companion/ the look on Black Mage's face]] when he discovers that "Muffin", Dragoon's "parrot", is actually a [[spoiler:dragon]]. Extra points for Fighter and Thief completely ignoring what's right behind them.
** According to White Mage, here's what happened after Black Mage became the ruler of hell and gained limitless power:
-->'''White Mage:''' Did you feel that?
-->'''Black Belt:''' What?
-->'''White Mage:''' A great disturbance in the order, as if millions of voices cried out to say "Oh shit."
** And Matoya, trying to use her crystal eye for [[MundaneUtility lottery numbers]], keeps getting "THE DESTROYER IS MANIFEST". Basically, the entire universe went OhCrap when BlackMage took over hell.
* OlderThanTheyLook: Vilbert and, of course, all elven characters.
* OmnicidalManiac: Black Mage always did want to be ruler of a dead universe. However, he never showed he actually had the power to pull it off until late in the comic.
* OneWingedAngel: [[spoiler:Sarda]] might have [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/03/episode-1180-the-next-stage/ just done this]], but that could just be his real face.
** Turns outs it's more of a GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere (but at least with some foreshadowing throughout the series and relevance to the original game). His form right before that was more of a proper OneWingedAngel.
* OnlyAFleshWound: Black Mage stabs his comrades, usually in the head, and they always survive.
** Subverted when Black Mage actually kills Ranger this way, and gloats over it as his previous victims survived. Of course, he is then [[DeathIsCheap resurrected]] by his friend Cleric.
** Black Mage regularly survives injuries such as losing his arms or being impaled by a spear, usually without proper healing.
** Pretty much everyone in the main cast, at one time or another, goes through this.
* OnlyKnownByTheirNickname: apparently, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/05/27/episode-7001-ripped-from-todays-headlines/ the Onion Kid's real name is Rex Crockett]] (check left bottom corner).
** [[http://www.nuklearforums.com/showpost.php?p=760484&postcount=8 Clevinger said this isn't his real name]]. It was never revealed.
* OnlySaneMan: White Mage. Black Mage is when he's holding the SanityBall (If you can call it that).
** Thief, Princess Sara, Left-Hand Man Gary, Drizz'l, and Rogue are this in their respective groups.
*** Though among those listed above, ''only'' Left-Hand Man Gary has not shown overt signs of either willfully dangerous ignorance (White Mage and Rogue), [[KnightTemplar Knight Templaric]] tendencies (White Mage again), BlackAndGrayMorality (Thief, Sara and Drizz'l), or sociopathic, psychopathic psychosis (need you even ask).
** [[spoiler: Sarda]] might also count, since he's [[spoiler: one of the few who sees the Light Warriors except Fighter as the horrible threat to the world they actually are.]]
** When Black Mage isn't in an omnicidal rage, he is typically the OnlySaneMan, and will point out flaws in logic, be the only voice of reason, and will even lean heavily against the fourth wall. However, whenever he ''is'' sane, one of the Light Warriors (usually) will do or say something stupid or frustrating, and there seems to be only a certain level of this he can take before he feels the "need to destroy." The stupider the idea (which happens to be proportional to the amount of participation Fighter has in its conception for some completely bizarre reason), the more likely he'll just snap all together. There's a slight problem [[PersonOfMassDestruction when that happens...]]
* OrwellianEditor: Done as a joke in the class change arc.
** To explain for those who missed the initial run of the strip: Thief's Ninja outfit is based on a red Ninja sprite from ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIII.'' In the original run of strip 200, and in the first run of the strip where he obtained the class change, Thief's outfit matched said sprite. One strip later, however, the outfit switched from red to black--Black Mage comments on it, but Thief only says that the outfit had ''always'' been black as a LogicBomb. On the same day as the LogicBomb joke, the previous strips were all edited to change the outfit from red to black.
* OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame: Clevinger satirizes the living ''hell'' out of this trope.
* OurElvesAreBetter: Played for laughs.
* OverlyPrePreparedGag: The comic's biggest BrickJoke.
* PerpSweating: Parodied. When Red Mage "interrogated" Bikke, the pirate claimed he didn't steal Matoya's crystal. Red Mage simply replied: "No? Or... '''Yes?'''". Confused Bikke immediately incriminated himself ([[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/12/12/episode-224-whats-wrong-thief/ and accused Red Mage of using "black ops mind games".]])
-->'''Bikke:''' I just wanted to feel like a big evil man! Is that really so wrong?
* PersonOfMassDestruction: Black Mage.
** Sarda as well. Who falls under AGodAmI.
* PetTheDog: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/12/02/episode-486-fell-down/ Black Mage's letter to White Mage]] in which he apologizes for being a {{Jerkass}} and tries to comfort her after Black Belt's death definitely qualifies as one of these moments. Obviously, that only proves that one can pet the dog once or a few times and still be irredeemably evil.
** Much later [[spoiler:Sarda gets a PetTheDog moment [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/23/episode-1155-very-good-reasons-too/ when he decides to spare the Dark Warriors' lives]].]]
--> Look, I don't do this... Uh, ever. But you guys are basically like kittens stuck on a leaking lifeboat in a typhoon. Just run.
** And he gave Fighter candy.
** Well, he gave Black Mage candy too. He just happened to place the candy in ''[[ForTheEvulz Black Mage's lungs]]''
* PhlebotinumOverload: This appears to happen to [[spoiler:Sarda, after he absorbs the power of the Orbs, the Fiends, ''and'' Black Mage's SuperpoweredEvilSide.]] As it turns out, [[spoiler:he's still alive, [[OneWingedAngel though not quite himself]].]]
* PillarOfLight: When [[spoiler:Sarda]] explodes.
* PlaceWorseThanDeath: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/16/interlude-00-hes-a-fighter-not-a-webcomic-artist/ "...Alabama is hell."]]
* PleaseWakeUp
* PokeThePoodle: White Mage's attempt at a FaceHeelTurn results in this.
** Garland ''is'' this trope.
* PoweredByAForsakenChild: Black Mage sacrificed nine orphans to get the Hadoken. And that's not counting the orphans he sacrificed for fun.
* PowerCopying: Black Mage becomes a blue mage, gaining the ability to use the powers of those that attack him. Unfortunately, the only spells he actually learned this way were: 1) a spell to make the target puke his guts out (except the target is hard-wired to Black Mage); 2) a spell to let [[JerkAss Sarda]] rewrite reality; and 3) a "spell" that allows him to [[GroinAttack kick people in the nuts]].
* ThePowerOfLove: Subverted, as Black Mage's most destructive attack is powered by draining love from the universe.
* PrecisionFStrike: Upon [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/06/10/episode-1003-not-up-to-code/ their first visit to the New Temple of Fiends]]:
-->'''Dragon RandomEncounter''': BLARGH! I'M A DRAGON!\\
''(Eleven more appear with him)''\\
'''Dragon RandomEncounter''': [[ActuallyFourMooks OR TWELVE!]]\\
'''Red Mage''': Impossible! Only a maximum of nine enemies may be onscreen!\\
'''Dragon RandomEncounter''': FUCK YOU.\\
'''Red Mage''': [[OhCrap Run.]]
** And a [[AtomicFBomb rather big one]], by [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/03/27/episode-400-not-safe-for-work-school-or-anywhere-you-can-get-in-trouble/ Black Mage]]
* PresentCompanyExcluded:
--> '''Thief:''' "I hate wizards."
--> ({{Beat}})
--> '''Thief:''' "What?"
--> '''Red Mage:''' "I'm waiting for you to say 'present company excluded'."
--> (Beat)
** Red Mage then waits an hour for Thief to say it.
* PuffOfLogic: At first [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/05/29/episode-154-it-was-a-nice-try-as-usual/ subverted]], then [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/11/episode-610-logic/ played straight]].
* PunctuationShaker: Drizz'l, the Cultists with names such as Mrr'grt and L'zlhe, pronounced "Margret" and "Leslie".
* PunnyName: The names of the two elven clans, Khee'bler and Sahn'ta.
* QuirkyMinibossSquad: All 4 Dark Warriors are based on or take the place of actual minibosses from the source material, and they are ''very'' quirky.
* RagtagBunchOfMisfits: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/03/17/episode-821-early-edition/ Red Mage: We're a roving band of armed misfits looking for something to do, and we thought you might fit the bill."]] The woman he's talking to thinks they're going to gang-rape her.
--> Red Mage: "I can't help but think the conversation would have ended differently had my pants stayed '''''on'''''."
* TheRashomon: Parodied in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/11/18/episode-483-clue-waynes-world-and-rashomon/ this strip]].
* ReadTheFinePrint
* ReadingTheStageDirectionsOutLoud: Black Mage invokes it for one of [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/11/26/episode-219-drowning-your-sorrows/ Red Mage's hated plans.]]
* RecoilBoost: Black Mage uses his Hadoken to propel the party's ship.
* RecurringExtra: Onion Kid, the little kid whose new family is constantly killed. [[spoiler: Except he's far more than that.]]
** A better example would be the Real Light Warriors, a party who is supposed to be the actual destined Light Warriors but MissedTheCall due to the main characters having taken the position while they were busy LevelGrinding. Every so often we see them just a few steps behind the protagonists or having their lives made miserable due to their actions.
* {{Retcon}}: No, Thief's ninja outfit has always been black. Why would it be red? He's always imagined himself as classing into a black-clad ninja, not a red one. What do you mean "It was red when he first appeared in it"? Bah. You're as crazy and confused as Black Mage.
* {{Retconjuration}}: Sarda, when he's not being a straight-up RealityWarper.
* RetconningTheWiki: One strip implies that Black Mage vandalised Wikipedia to win an argument with Red Mage.
* RetGone: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/03/29/episode-972-department-of-un-history-item-d-36/ There was never a fifth Light Warrior named Bard.]]
* RoaringRampageOfRevenge: Fighter goes berserk on Lich after [[spoiler:Lich kills Black Mage.]]
* RolePlayingGameVerse: The entire original plotline of the strip, not to mention Red Mage's constant stat references at the start of the series.'
* RoyalsWhoActuallyDoSomething: Unfortunately.
* RPGMechanicsVerse: This too, although for extra [[RuleOfFunny humor]], exactly which RPG mechanics are in use in any given strip seems to vary according to the author's whim. ''[[TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons D&D]]'', ''FinalFantasy'', ''TabletopGame/{{Exalted}}'', and ''TabletopGame/OldWorldOfDarkness'' rules have all been seen... and mocked.
* RuleOfFunny
* RuleOfThree: [[spoiler: Onrac is destroyed by the actions of Sarda in response to Black Mage three times. [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] with a sign outside the town saying "Where lightning never strikes thrice".]] Guess what happens.
* RunningGag: The guard chasing the hapless messenger. [[RefugeInAudacity Who is still chasing him in the Epilogue.]] Three years later.
* SarcasmFailure: Black Mage, usually when talking to Red Mage or Fighter for any length of time.
* ScheduleSlip: Used to update every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at 12:00 am without fail, but during the last few months of its run it updated those afternoons instead, or sometimes just skipped updates entirely.
** The epilogue took several weeks, due to its length and radically different art style.
* SchizoTech
* SchrodingersCat
-->'''Thief:''' Observing an event helps to make it happen. [[SchrodingersCat Someone should develop a theory based on that]].
* ScrewDestiny: "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/04/episode-1136-that-is-not-a-predictive-model/ OK, I have a theory.]] [[spoiler: It's called, '''I NEVER KNEW IT WAS POSSIBLE TO CARE LESS ABOUT TIME TRAVEL.''']]" Cue [[KamehameHadoken the Dark Hadoken]].
** [[spoiler: [[YouCantFightFate It didn't work.]]]]
*** No, but [[spoiler: Sarda exploded anyway, thus fate was screwed by accident.]]
*** [[spoiler: Unless, of course, [[StableTimeLoop that's exactly what was supposed to happen.]] After all, the world wasn't destroyed and the Light Warriors have mellowed out (somewhat, mostly owing to the de-powering.)]]
* ScrewThisImOuttaHere: Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/21/episode-1130-so-close-yet-so-far/ attempts to do this]], but Sarda [[CosmicRetcon rewrites his statement]] into satisfaction over an {{anticlimax}}.
* ScrewYouElves: "If you elves are so great, why is your technology on par with humans even though you had a nine thousand year head start?"
** "Your race's history is one long love poem dedicated to bloodshed. And to yourselves."
* ScrewYourself: It's implied that Black Mage, after killing the manifestation of his evil (which happened to look exactly like him), used its corpse to [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/29/episode-618-tough-love/ turn self-love into atrocity]]. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/11/03/episode-620-the-end-of-ordeals/ Then Thief managed to photograph the whole thing and blackmail BM with it]].
* SelfDeprecation: Strip 1,000 was called "I canít believe someone was asshole enough to make 1,000 sprite comics." Strip 1,001 was called "I canít believe someone was asshole enough to make more than 1,000 sprite comics."
* SenseLossSadness: Black Mage after losing his position of hell king.
* ShaggyDogStory: Pretty much every story arc. [[spoiler: Not to mention the series as a whole]].
** And just as readily subverted with all the horrible stuff that happens to [[spoiler: the Onion Kid.]]
* ShoutOut: Several; see [[ShoutOut/WebComics Shout Out: Web Comics]] for examples.
* SilenceYouFool: Drizz'l, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/04/08/episode-270-fighter-morissette/ here.]]
* SmallNameBigEgo: Black Mage, Red Mage, all Elves.
** Black Mage is an odd case. He admits straight out back in the beginning that he knows he's "vile" and evil. He's rather proud of it, in fact. He even knows that his one-liners are horrible and that he annoys White Mage into almost UnstoppableRage. What's ''strange'' is that he thinks '''''that''''' ''is charismatic and appealing to women.'' So, this trope still applies as he thinks that he is the ultimate ladies' man. His idea of what that ''is'' is just really very...er... distorted.
** King Steve probably has an over-inflated image of himself as well. Seriously, if he thinks of himself [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/09/04/episode-889-masterpieces/ that way]]...
* SpannerInTheWorks: Many examples, but the biggest one is [[spoiler:Sarda, to himself. Sometime in the present, he teleports White Mage into a "pocket dimension" because she was annoying him. It turns out this "pocket dimesion" is actually the beginning of the universe... and a younger version of himself arrives there a few seconds too late to mold the universe to his will.]]
** He also probably didn't expect [[spoiler: Black Mage's evil to cause him to suffer a PhlebotinumOverload--or that said overload would allow Chaos to possess his body.]] Not even gaining godlike power can prevent [[spoiler: Black Mage from ruining Sarda's life.]]
* SquishyWizard: Black Mage, of course.
** Although, BM has shown surprising ability to take beatings for a supposed {{Squishy Wizard}}. Not to mention he is apparently strong enough to kill a bunch of sea monsters using only his dagger.
* StableTimeLoop: Sarda [[spoiler:is tortured by Black Mage as Onion Kid, is taken in by his older self, watches said older self try to get revenge on the Light Warriors, grows up to become a powerful mage, goes back in time to the origin of the universe, goes insane taking TheSlowPath back to the present, decides to take revenge on the Light Warriors, repeat.]]
** And along the way, he [[spoiler:sends White Mage to the beginning of time to keep her out of the way, where she creates the universe. Wrap your head around ''that'' predestination paradox.]]
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/03/26/episode-532-20-power-loaders-vs-20-alien-queens/ A smaller example]]: when they are at some weird space-time singularity, Thief has an idea to use the hundreds of instances of the Light Warriors to form an army. When Red Mage asks him how he got the idea, Thief says that he saw the future Red Mage doing it. Red Mage [[LampshadeHanging comments]] on the fact that he wouldn't have done it if Thief hadn't told him, and that Thief wouldn't have told him if he hadn't seen him doing it.
** A smaller-scale example: Sarda in the past got the idea to grow a mustache from White Mage, who got the idea from seeing Sarda with his mustache in the present day. So who came up with the idea in the first place?
* TheStarscream: Black Mage repeatedly betrays the Light Warriors, and has tried to gain control of the group at least twice. [[spoiler: Drizz'l, meanwhile, usurped Garland for all of a day before getting kicked out of the Dark Warriors]].
** Despite being the leader, Thief gives Black Mage a run for his money.
-->'''Thief:''' Now, now, there'll be plenty of time for ruthless backstabbing after we get the Earth Orb. [{{Beat}}] [[DidIJustSayThatOutLoud Er, I should have said that in whisper-mode.]]
* StrangeMindsThinkAlike: Lava instead of ground, ventilation rust-holes, cold fusion devices, explodable amnesia dust, "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/19/episode-1206-the-royal-treatment/ a]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/01/05/episode-1207-a-king-steves-kick-ass-publication/ stube]]"... the list goes on.
* StuffedIntoTheFridge: Viciously parodied with the fate of Ranger's [[DisposableLoveInterest wife]].
* StunnedSilence: Black Mage has quite a few of these, usually accompanied by a FlatWhat when he's confronted with something so stupid or illogical that it renders him speechless. However, it has also happened when he has been simply ''horrified'' into stunned silence. There are few things [[EvenEvilHasStandards so horrible that they can horrify]] ''[[MadeOfEvil Black Mage]]'' into silence. One of these things is Red Mage's [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/03/23/episode-676-supernatural-selection/ chocobo breeding experiments]]. Black Mage even promises to devise a special hell just for what he's done.
* StupidSexyFlanders: Fighter thought that Legolas was cute.
* StylisticSuck: The guest comic written by Fighter.
* SuckinessIsPainful: An IncrediblyLamePun turns out to be fatal.
* SuddenlyFluentInGibberish: Subverted. Fighter seems to have figured out the Lefanish language, but he still hasn't [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/01/13/episode-795-language-barrier/ quite got the hang of it]]. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/02/15/episode-809-office-party/ Or has he]]?
* SurroundedByIdiots: Black Mage's temper and remaining sanity are continuously frayed by the rampant illogical insanity, stupidity and lack of all reason that tends to crop up in Red Mage's and Figther's vicinity (which isn't exactly conducive to the good health of the group). Thief also makes the same claim, but he gets far too much enjoyment out of screwing everyone out of everything they currently or ''will'' own, to be more than [[BystanderSyndrome occasionally annoyed by the irrationality.]]
-->'''Black Mage:''' I shall die as I lived. ''Completely'' surrounded by morons.
* SuspiciouslySpecificDenial: "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/05/21/episode-032-sometimes-hes-not-so-smart/ No I am not undressing you with the power of my mind!]]"...and too many other examples to list them all.
** Shifty shopkeep Akbar makes it an art form.
** Fighter will often [[CloudCuckooLander make completely innocent statements to this effect]], often believing a far too specific lie that Black Mage has told him. See the below conversation for exhibit A, case in point.
--> '''Fighter''': You told me Red Mage was dead.\\
'''Black Mage''': Oh, we've all been dead. His return is no surprise, really.\\
'''Fighter''': But you said he'd turn into the walking dead any minute and we had to make haste so he couldn't feast upon our delicious living flesh.\\
'''Black Mage''': Look, I say a ''lot'' of things. Now, we can stand here and argue about who fed who obvious, completely incongruous, fabrications and lies. But are you prepared to risk the unrelenting hunger of the undead?\\
'''Fighter''': All the senseless talking about a subject no one can remember, much less, uh, ''remember'' is getting us nowhere and zombies are hot on our heels. We must move forward and onward!
** Black Mage also has a rather introspective one while he is [[spoiler:the only one still stuck inside the web of a giant spider]]
--> '''Black Mage''': They're the dumb ones, why am '''I''' still stuck here? '''I'm''' the smart, sassy one. My condescending demeanor certainly has '''nothing''' to do with a barely hidden anxiety about my actual worth as a person, a mage, or a member of this team. Stupid Fighter and stupid Red Mage and stupid Thief, makin' me introspective. I suppose it'll give me even '''more''' emotional turmoil to squeeze into a ball of seething rage focused at the center of my being.
** Red Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/09/13/episode-1037-wherein-red-mage-is-totally-fine/ gets into the act too]]:
--> '''Red Mage''': Whatever it was, I bet it WASN'T a backlash from gross abuse of the laws of magic!
* SweatDrop: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/05/28/episode-035-there-can-be-only-one-plus-three/ Appeared a few times]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/06/20/episode-045-no-extra-title-for-survivor-8-bit-style-part-10/ in the early days]] [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/11/16/episode-095-black-belts-got-a-problem/ of the comic.]]
* TakeThat: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/08/09/episode-878-vg-mages/ One strip]] consisted of little more than a [[ToiletHumour pee joke]] and two characters being disturbed and disgusted by it. The strip's name? [[VGCats "VG Mages"]].
** From the epilogue, while Fighter and Black Mage are looking for a job:
--> '''Fighter:''' Here's one! They're recruiting for something called [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII SOLDIER]].
--> '''Black Mage:''' Lame.
--> '''Fighter:''' [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII The dukedom of Dollet is hiring mercenaries to repel Galbadian aggression]].
--> '''Black Mage:''' Somehow even lamer.
--> '''Fighter:''' We could join the search for a [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyIX missing Alexandrian princess]].
--> '''Black Mage:''' That could be interesting...
--> '''Fighter:''' Ah, they've already got a black mage. Oh, [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyX escorting a religious pilgrimage?]]
--> '''Black Mage:''' I'd rather chew my own neck off.
--> '''Fighter:''' We could [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyXI find a few other adventurers and join the fight against the Shadowlord.]]
--> [...]
--> '''Black Mage: ''NEXT!'''''
--> '''Fighter:''' Eh. [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyXII Everything]] [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII after]] [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIV that]] [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyXV sounds]] like a waste of time.
--> '''Black Mage:''' I could've told you ''that''.
** Also from the epilogue, one can spot Cloud's buster sword and Squall's gun sword being peddled at Akbar's '''Not''' Useless Tools, alongside a bent pitchfork and a shovel with a hole in it.
** An earlier strip had Red Mage suggesting to distract Fighter by telling him to [[VideoGame/FinalFantasyX finish a race in]] [[ThatOneSideQuest 0:00 seconds]], only for the latter to state that he's not THAT stupid.
** One to VideoGame/FinalFantasyX [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/26/episode-838-no-air-down-there/ here]]; the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/04/28/episode-839-wide-world-of-sports/ reality of certain Final Fantasy sporting events]].
** Episode 815: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/03/03/episode-815-try-our-new-all-meat-salad/ Try Our New All-Meat Salad]] is an extended TakeThat to the bizarre appetizers invented by American casual dining restaurants like T.G.I. Friday's and Applebee's.
--> '''Black Mage:''' Chipsplosion Bowl? [[BaconAddiction Bacon Enchilada]]?
--> '''Black Mage:''' Fritter Rolls? ''Corn'' Blasters?
--> '''Black Mage:''' Cheese ''Munch''? Cream Balls?
--> '''Black Mage:''' Batter Wedges? [[DeepFriedWhatever Chicken-Fried Butter Sticks?]] Do... Do you use a fork?
* TemptingFate: All over the place, but especially in the Temple of Fiends sequence.
** "[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/02/episode-1147-the-big-plan/ And now that I've described the plan in full]], [[UnspokenPlanGuarantee nothing can possibly go wrong]]."
** From the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/09/26/episode-1177-oh-its-probably-nothing/ episode]] titled [[LampshadeHanging Oh, it's probably nothing]]:
--->'''Red Mage:''' Any fate that we can walk into because we're not dead is a better one than we had ten minutes ago.\\
(a pulse of energy erupts from Sarda making the ground shake)\\
'''Black Mage:''' Unrelated: Anyone else hear that?
** Leading to [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/01/episode-1179-everything-will-be-fine/ this]]:
--->'''[[spoiler:Sarda:]]''' My plans will not be undone by such amateur-hour horseshit as absorbing too much power and exploding.
** This one is when they go to the submarine temple, after Black Mage has returned to the air-sub, with his whole digestive tract out of his body.
--->'''Thief''': Well, that's the worst thing I'll ever see. (''GSHLURRPLE!'' as Black Mage forces his digestive tract to re-enter his body) That's what I get for daring the universe.
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/06/06/episode-1137-one-more-time/ Onrac: Where Lightning Can't Strike Thrice!]]
** Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/10/04/episode-607-the-locked-door/ here.]]
--->'''Black Mage''': ''Man'', I love the use of my legs. So awesome!
* TheChosenZero: Played with. The main characters ''aren't'' the real chosen ones, but they do (sort of) save the world, and the real chosen ones don't do anything important to the plot.
* TheFellowshipHasEnded: [[spoiler: The final fate of the Light Warriors. After their quest is over they all just sort of split apart (with the exception of Black Mage and Fighter)]].
* TakenForGranite: Black Mage can also do this to people apparently, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2002/04/10/episode-137-quick-decisive-action he did it to stop a temporal paradox]].
* ThatCameOutWrong: Red Mage is a MACHINE at this.
* ThemeNaming: Khee'bler and Sahn'ta elves.
* TheoryOfNarrativeCausality: Thief tries to invoke this [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/02/19/episode-957-bargain-bin/ trope]] in order to trick Muffin.
* ThisCannotBe: [[spoiler:Sarda, [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/01/episode-1179-everything-will-be-fine/ here]].]]
* ThisIsGonnaSuck:
--> '''Red Mage:''' Sarda de-leveled us, but we don't know how many levels we lost.\\
[...]\\
'''Black Mage:''' Well, ''cast'' something!\\
'''SFX:''' Fweee\\
'''Black Mage:''' What was that?\\
'''Red Mage:''' The sound of us dying in one round.
* ThrowTheDogABone: White Mage, and possibly the ''entire world'' get thrown one when [[spoiler:White Mage kills Chaos.]]
** [[spoiler:And now it seems that, after countless failures and humiliations they suffered, Dark Warriors will get their happy ending because [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ White Mage made everyone believe that they are real Light Warriors and that they saved the world.]]]]
* TokenGoodTeammate: Black Mage and Thief are a omnicidal maniac and a kleptomaniac, respectively. Red Mage is a fairly amoral {{Munchkin}}, though he did redeem himself a bit when he [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/14/episode-1128-guns-blazing/ saved White Mage's life]] at (what would probably have been) the cost of his own. Fighter, although [[TheDitz not too bright]], is the only one who consistently displays a moral compass.
** According to Red Mage, he's really [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/11/14/episode-1191-redistribution-of-xp/ Lawful Amazing]].
** It has [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/12/12/episode-1203-maligned/ hereby been proven]] that Fighter is Good. Or possibly that Red Mage is also evil, if it turns out that Neutral characters can wield the [[spoiler:Light Warriors']] weapons as well.
* TooAwesomeToUse: Played straight by Red Mage constantly, then {{Lampshaded}} when he can't save Black Mage because he ''just'' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/08/16/episode-320-extrications/ used those items]].
* TooDumbToFool: Fighter in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/05/06/episode-281-helpin-a-buddy-out/ this strip]]. When Black Mage uses his Hypnovision on Fighter, he claims that it wouldn't work because he's "not smart enough to be affected".
* TooDumbToLive: Red Mage is the last of the Red Magi because they had a tendency to hold elaborate sacred meetings when other mages were out reproducing, combined with a nasty track record of killing each other/themselves in order to more accurately calculate the effects of spells and weapons on people.
--> [[strike:Tiamat]]Muffin: Oh, I see. You '''stupided''' yourselves into extinction.
** Completely inverted with Fighter. He's too dumb to ''die''.
* TravelMontage: Parodied--[[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/02/22/episode-811-visual-shortcut/ Red Mage once used Travel Montage as an actual means of transport]]. To Black Mage's confusion, it worked.
* TricksterMentor: Sarda... with far more emphasis on the trickster part.
* [[TwoOfYourEarthMinutes Twenty Four of Your Earth Hours]]: The amount of time Chaos gives to Red Mage to complete his plan.
* UndeadAuthor: The Cave of No Return.
* UnholyNuke: Black Mage mentions that he gained his Hadoken Attack (essentially a all-purpose Nuke) through sacrificing children to his wanton gods of evil. [[ComedicSociopath This surprises no one]].
* UnsoundEffect: From "BOMBASTIC CLASSICAL MUSIC! [[OminousLatinChanting Ominous Latin Chorus! Ominous Latin Chorus!]]" to "Orgy of Violence!" to "REALLY LOUD SUMMONING AND RUMBLE NOISES!", and many others besides.
* UnspokenPlanGuarantee: Lampshaded [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/07/02/episode-1147-the-big-plan/ in this strip.]] [[spoiler:Needless to say, the plan in question didn't work.]]
** Much earlier example (without LampshadeHanging): Black Mage [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/15/episode-429-several-birds-one-hadoken/ described in detail]] his plan to kill the rest of the group by blowing up a volcano with his Hadoken... and then his plan failed miserably because somehow [[ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy he managed to miss a volcano]].
* UnstoppableRage: Fighter went into this when Black Mage was killed by Lich.
* UpToEleven: The Glorious Chainsaw Method.
** The description on that is hilarious: Make your swords [[IronFist become like things unto chainsaws.]]
* UseYourHead: "The main tactic of the Ram Form of Zodiackenshido is to break your opponent's equipment with your head before he breaks your head with his equipment."
* VillainWithGoodPublicity: Well, to the extent they can be considered villains, anyway, [[spoiler: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2010/03/20/episode-1224-a-legend-is-born/ Garland and co. get this on episode 1224]]]].
* VillainProtagonist: The Light Warriors. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/26/episode-1132-whos-the-end-boss/ They are the story's ''official'' villains]] (except for Fighter)[[note]]He's a casualty[[/note]].
* ViolenceIsTheOnlyOption: "[[MurderIsTheBestSolution I solve my problems through violence]]"; all of the Light Warriors qualify at one point or another.
** Black Mage ''actually'' [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/04/06/episode-404-comic-not-found/ refers to it]] as his [[ANaziByAnyOtherName Final Solution]].
* VisualPun: "I just checked the navigational log. A few things occur to me. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2005/12/06/episode-631-what-goes-around-comes-around/ One: this is not a very good ship.]]"
** The [[{{Transformers}} Shockwave]] will send us [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/06/15/episode-429-several-birds-one-hadoken/ into the atmosphere]].
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2008/05/27/episode-997-kind-of-like-awakenings/ It's too bad you're in a coma when there's a magazine filled with huge knockers right here]].
* VitriolicBestBuds: Fighter and Black Mage.
** Fighter is so consistently unaware of Black Mage's hate for him that it actually becomes a jaw-dropping plot point when Thief and Red Mage finally decide to kill Black Mage (for good reason), and Fighter [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/12/11/episode-930-turnabout/ stops them]] with:
---> ...friends look out for one another and ''we're'' friends, but Black Mage is my ''best'' friend. Also, I can block any attack and kill ''anything'' that bleeds. '''Hint.'''
** Black Mage and Thief are another good example. Though the two often claim to hate one another (and have each proven it more than once), they also respect each other's evil ways, and have on occasion shown some great synergy. To wit, just check pretty much the entirety of the Dwarfland arc.
* VomitIndiscretionShot: Black Mage is the king of this... usually projectile vomiting style. Thief's comment that he saw "darker wood in elf porn" made this happen spontaneously. His discovery of the [[InterspeciesRomance true nature of Bahamut and Matoya's relationship]] and just what the [[MacGuffin Rat Tail]] was used for made him eject things he hadn't eaten yet.
* WackyWaysideTribe: The arcs involving a trip to the Arctic and another where the Light Warriors take control of a city.
* WallsOfText: Not ''all'' the time, but sometimes something like [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2004/07/13/episode-441-crescent-fresh/ this]] happens.
* WeaponsGradeVocabulary: Lethal puns against Astos.
-->'''Black Mage:''' Astos? Mo' like your ''ass'' is ''toast''.
* WebAnimation: The official (Brian-approved) flash version by [[http://www.newgrounds.com/collection/8bittheater.html TLF]]. Discontinued, though the animators say anyone else is free to continue on from there.
** There's also a motion comic series on youtube, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwgPqCadw6M 8-Bit Theater Chaos]], which is currently sitting happy at 52 episodes and six seasons, with consistent improvement as it goes on.
* WebcomicOfTheGame: Follows the plot of ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyI''... kinda. The comic's contents often venture far outside the realm of the game, making this more of a "very loosely-inspired by" series rather than a faithful adaption.
* WelcomeToCorneria: The TropeNamer.
* WhamEpisode: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/07/episode-1125-unexpected/ Insert a dead-baby-comedy euphemism for intercourse.]]
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/09/episode-1126-impasse/ Fighter and Black Mage both blow your mind.]]
** [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/05/12/episode-1127-invincible-sword-technique/ Wait....WHAT?]]
* WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong: mentioned various times, either in naive stupidity by Fighter and Red Mage, or sarcastic snarkery by Black Mage. Thief can bring it up when the occasion arises though:
--> '''Thief''' [to Black Mage]: maybe you shouldn't be holding the keys to the apocalypse.
* WhatHaveYouDoneForMeLately: When Black Mage asks [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/02/24/episode-812-and-he-has-a-lovely-singing-voice/ what Red Mage has ever contributed to the team]].
-->'''BM''': Why do we listen to Dork Mage? What has he ever done for us that worked?\\
'''Fighter''': He makes a killer salad.\\
'''Thief''': He's a wiz at laundry too. Look how clean my little ninja booties are.\\
'''BM''': Yes, okay, fine. But salads and footwear do not decisive tactical thinking make. What's he ever done for us that was of any actual value?\\
'''RM''': My stratagems defeated all three fiends thus far faced, and I'm the one who discovered how our class changes work.\\
BeatPanel\\
'''BM''': Today. What has he done for us today!
* WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue: Used as the last strip for the series. The strip picks up three years after the previous strip [[spoiler: with White Mage tracking down the Light Warriors to give them ''some'' credit for all they did, Red Mage and Dragoon starting up a support group for sole survivors of mysterious sects, Thief becoming the king of Elfland through unknown means, and Black Mage and Fighter having disappeared, with no one knowing where they are (ironiclly we find out in the last scene that they're right where they were at the start of the comic).]]
** It's also a very loving recreation of Mark Waid and Alex Ross' Kingdom Come, right down to the interesting names for the dishes at the restaurant.
* WhiteMagicianGirl: White Mage.
* WhosOnFirst: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/09/02/episode-738-completely-original/ Rather literally, actually.]]
* WhyAreYouLookingAtMeLikeThat:
-->'''Red Mage:''' We're going about this whole Chaos '''thing''' the wrong way.\\
'''Black Mage:''' Why break with '''tradition''' now?\\
'''Red Mage:''' No, no. Seriously. We '''can't''' out-fight him, we can't out-'''cast''' him, and we can't out-think him. But we '''can''' out-stupid him.\\
'''Fighter:''' How?\\
''(the others turn and look at him)''
* WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes: As seen in [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/04/episode-064-the-poor-sap-falls-for-it-every-time/ this]] early strip, spiders freak Fighter out. So you can just imagine what's going through his mind when [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2003/04/26/episode-277-oh-thats-not-good/ this]] happens later on.
* WithThisHerring: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/01/episode-063-fighters-got-a-point-i-think/ Parodied.]]
* WoobieDestroyerOfWorlds: [[spoiler: Sarda, after we learn his backstory.]]
* TheWorfEffect: {{Lampshade|Hanging}}d. [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2007/09/18/episode-895-the-punching-bag/ Black Mage is stated to suffer from this effect by Red Mage, referring to his use as a target by Dragoon.]]
* WriterRevolt: Why Black Belt was brought back and killed off a second time.
* YankTheDogsChain: [[spoiler:Black Mage finally succeeded in killing Fighter and Thief and was about to do in Red Mage. Then Sarda showed up and brought them back to life.]]
* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: Lampshaded in the [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/04/15/episode-016-the-quest-to-assault-the-elderly/ sign]] that advertises the palace is looking for the Light Warriors.
* [[YouAlreadyChangedThePast You Already Changed The Future]]: In dealing with White Mage, Sarda manages to cause the event he was trying to prevent.
* YouAnsweredYourOwnQuestion: Never ask "what the Hell is this?" [[spoiler: after dying.]]
* YouAreAlreadyDead: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2001/08/18/interlude-02-nor-does-the-fighter-like-the-ninjas/ In one of the strips]] [[ShowWithinAShow Fighter made.]]
* YouCanVerbMyNounAnyDay: Black Mage to White Mage. Repeatedly. And without shame or remorse.
* [[LogicalFallacies You Fail Logic Forever]]: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/12/19/episode-784-this-is-canon/ this strip]] is a wonderfully [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] example. See also InsaneTrollLogic above.
* YouHave48Hours: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/20/episode-1186-more-or-less-timeless/ Chaos gives Light Warriors 24 hours to accomplish the goal of Red Mage's latest plan.]]
* YouHaveOutlivedYourUsefulness: [[http://www.nuklearpower.com/2009/10/06/episode-1181-of-loyalty/ Chaos to Black Mage, apparently.]]
* YouKilledMyFather: [[spoiler: And raped his mind. And burned down his orphanage. And killed his foster parents. And the second set of foster parents. And the third.]]
** They killed Astos, Drizz'l's father.
* YouWereTryingTooHard: The ordeal of Pride.
* YouWillBeSpared: Upon being hit with the only successful (if ineffectual) attack on his person to date, Sarda says this to the perpetrator: "You're a quick thinker ''and'' spiteful. I can respect that. You won't be killed, Bikke."

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''Suckers!''
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