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Video Game: Aethras Chronicles
Intro sequence, character creation, and combat
Aethra's Chronicles is a shareware fantasy RPG for MS-DOS, with rules influenced heavily by Role Master. It is available for free on websites that carry lots of shareware MS-DOS games. And, for an MS-DOS game, it has very few bugs!

The Aethra Chronicles is an atypical Fantasy Role-Playing game. You will create several characters choosing from twelve different classes and five different races. The object of the game is to stay alive and advance your characters in levels while completing various quest which will be made known to you. The Aethra Chronicles is shareware and is free to try out. Please fell free to play the shareware version as long as you like. The shareware version however is not the complete game. [Relative to the grander plans, anyhow.] The shareware version is what we call chapter one "Book of Prophecy". Those who register the game will receive chapters two and three. [Actually, you won't, and that's if it is even possible to register the game anymore.] I hope you will agree with us that this game is one of the finest shareware games in its class. [Mostly by virtue of being one of the only shareware games in its class.] However unless we get support from the users [we] will not be able to continue with this type of work. [Indeed, sequels were never made.]

The story begins with your father accused of kidnapping the king's son and imprisoned. The king's vizier, however, knows that your father is innocent and sends you on a quest to hunt down the real culprits. More detailed gameplay info can be found here while a walkthrough is here.

This game provides examples of:

  • Action Girl: Chrissta and Traigarth, who are powerful front-liners. Also, of course, any characters and hirelings you have who also fit.
  • Beef Gate: Each dungeon and world map sector has different encounter levels. So, if you stumble into a den of incredibly powerful demons that even Khaled doesn't last too long against, probably not where you're supposed to be going until lategame.
  • Big Bad: TONEATH, the demon at the center of the cult.
  • Bold Inflation: The demon TONEATH always has his name capitalized. There's also the GEMs of power.
  • Bonus Boss: The vampire lord near Naedarn and Khazreen Vader.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: You get the Champion Sword for getting the best ending, but you've already defeated the enemies who it would have been really handy for.
  • Church Militant: As usual for a fantasy game, there are Paladins and Clerics. This game also adds in the Ashikari, who are militants of a mystical eastern temple.
  • Cult: The TONEATH Cultists.
  • Disc One Nuke: You can get Khaled the Dwarf Fighter and Timmar the Elven Ranger for free, and they are high-tier characters. Simply by having one of them in your party, you will then be able to get Chrissta the Elven Thief and Traigarth the Paladin much more quickly. With these characters, you can easily secure a Scroll of Shadow Guardian to have an extra copy of one of these characters who will never leave.
  • The Dragon: Khazreen Vader is reputed to be the human leader of the TONEATH cult. Interestingly, fighting him is optional, and he may be of lower ranking in the cult than the Vizier and the Queen.
  • Dragon Their Feet: Even after beating the game, you can still go fight the bonus bosses later.
  • Dungeon Crawling: Lots and lots of it. With enough loot to make you run out of inventory slots.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: As well as many hybrid classes.
  • Fire and Brimstone Hell: Presumably the demons come from it, because many of them are on fire and many demon-possessed enemies are dressed in red and have eyes on fire.
  • Glass Cannon & Fragile Speedster: Chrissta has a movement of 25 and good Deadly Strike skill, but does not hold up well if any enemies should somehow survive her deadly dash of deadly striking in the first round.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Elite Mook humans tend to have these.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: The queen is one of the leaders of the TONEATH cult. She is using her own son, the missing prince, as the sacrifice for TONEATH.
  • The Good Chancellor: The Vizier.
    • Evil Chancellor: Turns out he's actually one of the leaders of the TONEATH cult. That's how he knows your father is innocent, and why he wanted the book "Prophecies of Doom."
  • Hobbits: They're not even "halflings" or anything.
  • Kryptonite Factor: Demons are weak against marsh flowers. This is especially-important in the battle against TONEATH.
  • Legitimate Businessmen's Social Club: The Crafts Guild of Stormhaven states, "Welcome to the Crafts Hall guild. We will be glad to instruct you in the fine art of basket weaving or perhaps quilting is more to your liking. If assistance is needed we can help..." Of course when you look at who can be hired from there, they are all thieves.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Accomplished by making a tank with 100 Agility and equipping movement-boosting gear. Also possible by leveling-up Chrissta.
  • MacGuffin Delivery Service: The Vizier wanted you to get the book "Prophecies of Doom" so he could copy it and learn how to summon TONEATH. He actually knew how to read it, but sent you on a wild chase for a translator so he could go plan the summoning meanwhile.
  • Magic Knight: Paladins and Ashikari, with the Ashikari being even further magic-oriented.
  • Mighty Glacier: Traigarth, who has a movement of 5 but is a high-tier tank who will stick with you permanently.
  • Multiple Endings: Using at least one mature marsh flower against the final boss will get you the live prince baby rather than the dead one.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: Khazreen Vader has the same title as another dude with sorcerous ways. And of course there's the demon lord TONEATH, whose name is always in all-caps to show how powerful he is.
  • Nintendo Hard: If you play the game the way it was meant to be (i.e. without the Deadly Strike skill) then the lategame will be very difficult.
  • One-Gender Race: Dwarves and Hobbits can only be male.
  • Our Dwarves Are All the Same: The only stereotype they don't fit in this game is drink a lot.
  • Our Vampires Are Different: The ones in this game are servants of the demon lord TONEATH.
  • Projectile Spell: Many of them, such as Magebow.
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: Gender has no effect on anything, and is determined by character portrait rather than being a separate piece of data.
  • Turn Undead: One of the Cleric spells.
  • Unwinnable by Design: Sometimes you just shouldn't antagonize certain NPCs. Such as the Red Dragon - you cannot beat the game without helping him. You also cannot get the best ending unless you let the marsh flowers grow.
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: You'd better hold on to those quest items. Especially the GEMs of Power - whose purpose you might not realize at first.
  • Weapon of X-Slaying: Some weapons do extra damage against certain types of enemies. For example, the Sword of Right is an anti-undead weapon.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: Yeah, you're gonna fight TONEATH, as typical for a plot in which you are supposed to prevent such a demon being summoned in the first place.

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