Atmosfear (or Nightmare as it was originally known in Australia, the game's country of origin) was a board game set in a mystical realm. Its current edition sets you as either one of six monsters, or as a "Soul Ranger." The board was set up in a fan pattern, with six blades set around a central hub. In the middle was a cup, in which you placed a folded up piece of paper with your fear written on it. The six players would try to become a Harbinger, most of whom were on historic figures. Anyone who couldn't become a Harbinger had to become a Soul Ranger, who have fight the Harbingers for their keys. Any fans not in use would be flipped to reveal a "Sewer" realm. The objective of the game for the monsters was simply to collect six different coloured keystones, then get back to their numbered area in the hub, roll their number, and then hope like heck you did not draw your fear.The runner of the game was- "SILENCE MAGGOT" *thunder crack* "You are not worthy to introduce me, the Gatekeeper. So, you pathetic worms, you call yourself tropers? Well let's just see about that. I am the ruler of this realm. Complete my game in one hour, or you shall be trapped here forever! if you want to stay on my good side, then fill out some tropes below, or suffer for all eternity! He... hahahahahahaha"Yeah... That was the Gatekeeper, and if you want to be his friend, forget it. He will interrupt the game, and punish, or reward, you. But he will most likely punish you. Not only will you have to brave his psychotic desires, but you will also have to deal with those other players... The Soul Rangers.The Soul Rangers live in suffering and agony, and this makes them very angry. Dark skeletons, riding with their Duster coats floating in the breeze, cowboy hat shading their glowing eye sockets, and fingerless gloves grasping their mounts. They used to ride horses, but these days they have settled for modern low rider motorbikes. The only way to end their agony, is to make it yours! Beware.Spoony did a review of the very first game in the series, which can be viewed here.Oh, and watch out for- "STOP!" *thunder crack* "Who's troping next?!Hands up?!You areBANISHED TO THE BLACK HOLE!"Wait, what! No! Please- Eyaaarrgggggggghh-
Tropes found in the Atmosfear series:
Beware the Nice Ones: Baron Samedi seems like he's the exception to all the assholes that play host to these games - sure, he makes you hit the hole, but at the beginning he seems like an Affably EvilFriendly Enemy, a real fun guy who only punishes you if you're not getting the party swinging, and a breath of fresh air compared to The Gatekeeper. Halfway through, he starts becoming more of a jerkass, especially to Dirtbag. The last ten minutes, he's all business.
Dramatic Thunder: Every single time the Gatekeeper wants to get your attention. Other hosts have different sound effects; for instance, Khufu the mummy has a high pitched scream. Usually ended up as a Jump Scare, which was probably the point.
Incoming Ha- "STOP!" *Thunderclap* "I am.....the GATEKEEPER!"
Hair-Trigger Temper: The Gatekeeper yells at you as soon as he suspects you're not doing his every word as they leave his mouth, punishes you for not calling him by his whole name in time, seethes with hatred at the player who rolled lowest in his games, and blows up when you win. One can only wonder what sorts of terrible things he could do if he was actually able to see the actions of the players.
Jerkass: The Gatekeeper, definitely. His cutting remarks and jibes can seriously wound a person's self-esteem. Other then that, he's still pretty dickish throughout the game, taunting and trolling the players.
Large Ham: All of the hosts, really, but the Gatekeeper in the original (and The Harbingers) has to be the largest.
Luck-Based Mission: Arguably the entire game, as Spoony pointed out. If no-one is in a position to win the by the end of the game, then the Gatekeeper (or whoever is hosting) will start randomly giving all of the keys to whichever player can roll the highest number.
Nintendo Hard: The "Staring Contest" in the original game. It lasts for two minutes, which will probably result in all but the most adept starers losing a key.
One-Winged Angel: Each of the hosts adopts a gradually more horrific form as the game goes on. The Gatekeeper in the original looks pretty much the same at the start and end of the game, the only difference being more sinister lighting , a few subtle makeup effects and contact lenses that make his eyes big and red. Baron Samedi in the second booster tape already looks pretty gruesome when the game starts, but becomes more and more demonic as the game progresses. The Witch in the third tape starts out as a foxy lady, but becomes the steretypical "ugly witch" by the end of the game. Finally, the Vampire in the fourth and final booster tape starts out as a normal looking woman, but morphs into an outright Eldritch Abomination by the end.
Sadistic Choice: Early on in The Harbingers, The Gatekeeper gives the players the choice to either take free turns, or screw over the other players. Later on, most of his choices are more designed to screw over whoever's turn it is.
The Chosen One: One of the players is selected to be this at the beginning. Unfortunately it doesn't pay off as much as you'd expect, if you don't count carrying out some of The Gatekeeper's pranks from time to time.
Title Drop: The first Atmosfear game was originally called "Nightmare", a word The Gatekeeper often mentioned during the course of the game. Of course, given the Writing Around Trademarks mentioned below, it does kind of lose its edge...