Playing With / Greater-Scope Villain
aka: Bigger Bad

Basic Trope: A villainous presence that is more cosmically significant than the Big Bad (or simply higher up in the grander scheme of things), but cannot truly be said to be the one causing the conflict (and may have little to do with it at all).
  • Straight: In Dark Ages of Troperia, Emperor Evulz and his evil empire is making things miserable for everyone and is the obvious enemy for Ace Braveheart to fight. However the Progenitor of Dark Ages is the one who gives Evulz the power to rule, while having no direct influence on the empire.
  • Exaggerated: The Progenitor of Dark Ages is an incomprehensible, immortal and nigh-omnipotent entity whom very little is known of, lurking in the void between galaxies, who's theorized to be origin of all known evil in the universe. We eventually find out that Evulz' Start of Darkness was triggered after he found out about the existence of this thing, something that shattered his very mind and turned him into the heartless monster that he is today, despite not having established any direct contact with it at any point of his life. Put bluntly, the simple knowledge that the creature existed was enough to corrupt him.
  • Downplayed: The Progenitor of Dark Ages is a Non-Action Big Bad with Emperor Evulz as his Dragon-in-Chief.
  • Justified:
    • If The Progenitor of Dark Ages show his face, humanity will unite against him. If he remains hidden, he can continue making humans fight each other.
    • The Progenitor has been dead for years; Evulz is simply continuing his work.
    • Even evil intentions can have a few unplanned side effects. The Progenitor of Dark Ages had no way of knowing that his actions would indirectly influence those of Evulz.
  • Inverted: Goddess Sophia the Liberator is a Greater-Scope Paragon.
  • Subverted: It seems that Progenitor of Dark Ages is the subtle source of power of Emperor Evulz, but then it starts playing an active role in the conflict, so Ace and his friends are forced to combat him and defeating it (which is no small feat at all). Therefore, turning the situation into a standard Sorting Algorithm of Evil.
  • Double Subverted: ...However, once the dust has settled, we discover that the Progenitor was a mere spawn of the Thousand-World Obliterator, a powerful extra-dimensional being who, despite its power and inherent malevolence, has no interest in destroying Troperia nor the universe where it resides.
  • Parodied: Bob's on a quest to get his lunch money back from the school bully. That bully did this to impress (or to be like) the Progenitor of The Dark Ages.
  • Zig Zagged: Sometimes every hints point to a malevolent cosmic presence, the other times it's made clear that Emperor Evulz is the single person to blame, and all his evils are human evils. It's really a Mind Screw for Bob (and the audience).
  • Averted:
    • The more cosmically significant villain has something to do with the conflict.
    • There is no more cosmically significant villain.
  • Enforced: The Progenitor of the Dark Ages is the Big Bad of a series that Dark Ages of Troperia is part of a shared universe with. The writers of Dark Ages of Troperia are not allowed to involve it directly in their stories, but still want to make its presence felt.
  • Lampshaded: "That kind of evil... can't be human evil. I Sense a Disturbance in the Force."
  • Invoked: ???
  • Exploited: "That sort of cosmic indifference can be useful for all parties involved. We'll see who gets it first!"
  • Defied: ???
  • Discussed: ???
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed: Such pervasive presence of cosmic evil makes Troperia truly the crapsackiest of Crapsack World.
  • Reconstructed: There are also good higher powers to oppose the evil ones and keep things from getting too crapsack.

Back to Greater-Scope Villain