Video Game / Boktai
"TAIYOHHHH!"Bokura no Taiyou
("Our Sun") in Japan, Boktai
is an action RPG series produced by Hideo Kojima
. Django is a boy hoping to follow in the footsteps of his disappeared father, Ringo, as a vampire hunter. With his (not-so; see below) trusty Gun Del Sol and the sun spirit Otenko by his side, he takes on zombies, demonic dogs, vampires, and Norse mythology-derived what have you.
The original GBA trilogy featured an interesting gimmick: each game came in a unique cartridge with a UV light detector (the UV light needed being sunlight in 99% of cases. Do you keep a UV lamp around the house or something? (Hint: a black light or even a plasma globe works)
.) Django's gun is quite literally powered by the sun; sunlight is required to charge the gun's battery. If you were starved for sunlight, the stealth element came into play. Django can sneak around and knock on the walls to distract enemies, at least until you get to an in-game sunlight source or you find a real-world one.
Unfortunately, this interesting gimmick proved to be the games' undoing. Playing outside in the sunlight
is a bit of a turn-off (especially in places with very hot summers... like Japan). Despite decent critical reception for the whole series, the games sold poorly internationally and the third installment never left Japan. Being the dashing, people-pleasing epitome of suavete
the man is, Kojima wised up and delivered a DS sequel (Lunar Knights
) without the trouble of needing sunlight in the real world. (The system's double-slot feature allowed players to use the solar sensor by inserting the GBA cartridges from previous games, though.) However, in localizations, this sequel severed ties with the original Boktai
series by renaming many characters. It doesn't make too
much of a difference, however; the characters in the Japanese version were pretty much only connected to the original series through name anyway, and the thematic elements remain intact in all localizations. Sadly, Lunar Knights
ends on a cliffhanger
with, so far, no sequel in sight. A Fan Translation
for Boktai 3 exists.
The series is as follows:
- Boktai: The Sun is in Your Hand (Bokura no Taiyō in Japan, nicknamed "Boktai")
- Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django (Zoku Bokura no Taiyō: Taiyō; Shōnen Django/"Zoktai")
- Boktai 3: Sabata's Counterattack (Shin Bokura no Taiyō: Gyakushū no Sabata/"Shinbok")
- Lunar Knights (Bokura no Taiyō; DS: Django & Sabata/"Boktai DS")
Now has a Character Page
which is still under construction.
This series provides examples of:
- Absurdly Sharp Blade: In Shinbok Django can use swords to smash through rocks that are nearly four times as big as him, and those suckers shatter too.
- Alternate History: Lunar Knights refers to a Lord of Destruction being Dumas's predecessor, and Trinity is Aaron's father. Both of these were from the alternate timeline the latter came from in from Boktai 3 in which Django dies and Ratatosk manages to take over the world. It might be argued that Shinbok is actually the alternate timeline, since in getting kicked out of his world, Trinity accidentally broke the seal on Django's grave, which totally counts as interference.
- Ambidextrous Sprite: Nicely averted with Django and Sabata as they hold their respective guns with both hands. Played straight with Lucian, whose eyepatch will flip and can magically switch which hand is holding his weapon and with Django in Shinbok, where he would hold his gun with one hand instead of both hands.
- And Then John Was a Vampire: Played straight with Ringo who gets turned into a vampire by his adversary The Count, this later becomes a case of Nice Job Breaking It Villain. Later subverted with Django, who is turned into a vampire but purified before the transformation is complete, making him a half-vampire.
- Ancient Conspiracy: The Immortals make up one spanning the entire universe.
- An Ice Person: Zazie can usually be found asleep in the Inn. If the player makes Django wake her up twice, she will freeze him. After she wakes up, she tells Django that she's cranky because of her low blood pressure, and as an apology she teaches him the freezing spell.
- Animated Armor: A staple mini-boss of the series. Bearing particular note is Silvery White Knight.
- Anime Hair: Django's 'do looks pretty much like a beige-ish cloud.
- Anti-Poop Socking: If you stay out for a long while or overuse your Gun Del Sol/Sol de Vice, they'll overheat and you'll have to hide out in the shade for a ridiculously long time before it'll recover. If you keep going in spite of this, eventually your equipment will enter a permanent state of overheat that it won't recover from unless you turn off the game and leave it for a day or so (or mess with the time settings).
- Aristocrats Are Evil: Lunar Knight has two evil viscounts (most likely twins to boot), an Ax-Crazy human-hunting Margrave, an evil scientist baron, and an earl who became a Necessarily Evil duke. Interestingly enough, in the earl's case, his ascension to dukehood was the capper of his career as an earl, bagging vampire hunters and Guild gunslingers alike and instilling fear in said opposition from all that rep.
- Arm Cannon:
- Django can obtain the Mega Buster in Zoktai and Shinbok.
- And of course MegaMan.exe himself has one.
- Zoktai and Shinbok both use the Judgement tarot card for this purpose. Lunar Knights has something similar in its Wild Cards.
- There was also an equip item (Burning Headband) that automatically use a healing item from your inventory whenever your Life ran out while it was worn. Its counterpart (Cool Bandanna) uses a restorative when your Energy was completely depleted.
- Back That Light Up: Inverted. All of the GBA games require sunlight and the DS game can use sunlight. (There was an actual UV sensor in the cart that affected gameplay. After all, you are killing vampires in this game.) Anyone who has used a TV knows that sunlight + screen = glare. However, if you play it on the original GBA (or SP 1 with the backlight turned off), the screen and colors are best in direct sunlight.
- Badass Longcoat: Ringo has one. So does Lucian.
- Block Puzzle: This series is chock full of these. Featured in every game in the series is the Classic block puzzle, the Frictionless Ice variation, the Destroyable Block variation, a Changing-Properties block variation, and a Match the Colors variation.
- Boktai: The Sun is in Your Hand has a Light and Mirrors Puzzle variation in Sol City.
- In multiple times throughout the series, you have to use regular old mooks as blocks.
- Blown Across the Room: A class of frames (Spear-type) can do this.
- This also happens to Duneyrr when you defeat her.
- Body Surf: Black Dainn. He originally is in the body of Nero, then takes over the body of Ringo, which is where he is finally defeated.
- Boss Rush: Each game has an optional segment (typically called the Arena or the like) where the player faces the game's bosses in quick succession, with better prizes for faster clear times. Harder difficulties boost the bosses' levels.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Sabata winds up like this in Shinbok. In Zoktai, Vampire Ringo was originally intended by the villains to be like this, but after drinking Django's lunar blood, which happens to prevent undeadening, he regains his own consciousness and memories.
Black Dainn: What the...?! You got your memory back?!
Ringo: Django, thank goodness you're safe... Your blood... The blood of Mani within you is what woke me.
- Breath Weapon: The Boktai series is all over this trope.
- Played straight in Boktai: The Sun Is In Your Hand with Garmr's Ice breath. Carmilla creates energy orbs from her mouth that can temporarily petrify you.
- Members of the Bok family spew Klorofolun in the Boktai: The Sun Is In Your Hand then later switches to dark matter in Boktai 2 and 3.
- One of the attacks the Sea Serpent in Zoktai uses is bubble breath .
- Blue Dvalinn is a triple threat; like the aforementioned Sea Serpent she can breathe bubbles, ink, and poison.
- Vanargand launches a massive laser beam (of both Sol and Dark varieties) from his mouth... thing...
- Jormungandr has an interesting subversion in that he releases smoke from his mouth; but he releases it as a result of you burning his mouth.
- Subverted with Nidhoggr as since his alligator form is a machine and therefore doesn't technically have a mouth.
- Breaking Speech: Duke Dumas, many times in Lunar Knights. Lucian is furious that Dumas doesn't even remember that he killed his lover, and Dumas remarks that Lucian probably doesn't know the names of all of the enemies the player has killed up to that point. He does it to Aaron as well, claiming that he's really fueled by revenge for Dumas killing his father (who he does remember) rather than fighting for justice.
- Brutal Bonus Level:
- Each game has a bonus dungeon sporting stronger enemies, multiple floors without a break, or a mix of the two.
- The fifth shooting segment in Lunar Knights, unlocked in a New Game+, sics upon the player enemies that move and attack much faster than anything that the player has had to deal with before, on top of formations best handled with Ezra's underutilized shot type. An S-Rank on it is required for 100% Completion, though achieving it will require good reflexes.
- But for Me, It Was Tuesday: Lucian's mission in the game is to hunt Dumas after he killed his lover, Ellen, then turned her into a Vampire's Bride, then shipped her off to become an android. When he finally meets up with him, he doesn't even remember it, and reminds Lucian that he probably feels the same way about everyone that he's killed. See Breaking Speech above.
- Canon Name: In the first game, players can name the protagonist anything they want. Once the second game rolls 'round, the title specifically names the protagonist as "Solar Boy Django", but the name can still be changed by the player.
- Charged Attack: Different parts of the Gun Del Sol allow it to execute this. In Lunar Knights, upgrading the Knight frame enough unlocks this capability.
- Cool Big Sis: Lady to Django and Lady to Lita, Bea to Aaron.
- Cool Ship: Laplace.
- Schrödinger counts as well, though it eventually develops into more of a Humongous Mecha.
- Comic-Book Adaptation: Taiyou Shounen Django A.k.a Solar Boy Django, a retelling with exclusive characters published by the Coro Coro Comics serial in Japan, and Singapore for the English translations.
- Credits Running Sequence: Boktai and Boktai 3.
- Crosshair Aware: In the first fight with Nidhoggr, you'll know when a bomb is about to be thrown in your face by the crosshairs on the ground.
- Cute Bruiser: Although you never actually see the Earthly Maiden Lita fight in the first three games, she seems to be a master of bare-hand melee combat, almost killing the main protagonist with a single punch for therapy purpose. Her several war cries are quite eloquent in that matter.
- Dark Is Not Evil: Played straight for Django who is turned into a vampire in Boktai 2, but still remains a good guy. Sabata and Lucian also have the power of Darkness but fall more into the Anti-Hero category.
- Dark Magical Boy: Sabata.
- Dark-Skinned Blond: Kid.
- Deader Than Dead: the only way to be sure that a vampire won't come back after defeat is to utterly annihilate its dark power with the Pile Driver or Purifex cannon, which is really a giant Pile Driver in orbit.
- Annoyingly enough, this never seems to work with the Count, since he comes back, what, five times in three games (counting Battle Network 6)?
- According to the Count in Shinbok, as long as any of his bats survive, he can regenerate. Presumably he's pretty careful about leaving extra lives for himself.
- Dem Bones: Skeletons appear in several different incarnations. Skeletons who attack with their fists, Skeleton Fencers who attack with a rapier, and Skeleton Archers who attack with a bow and arrow and sometimes break their bow by smacking you (changing their attack to the same as a regular skeleton). Skeletons regenerate after a few seconds unless killed with an elemental attack.
- Discard and Draw: In an ambush near the start of Boktai 2, Django loses the Gun del Sol, but is given the Sol de Vice, a magical gauntlet, and taught how to use it to enchant weapons with the power of the sun. Later, he's turned into a vampire and loses the ability to do even that, but gains vampiric powers instead.
- Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Lita nearly kills Django in Shinbok after he says he forgot who she was, though she tries to make it up by giving you numerous items.
- The Dragon: Perrault. And later, Dumas.
- Dual Boss: Edgar and Virginia Poe.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The very first Boktai. To elaborate: instead of leveling up like you do in the later games, you instead collect Piece of Heart-type items to increase your health. Django and Sabata also shared a sprite, the only difference they had were in coloration. Also, you have much more options to customize your Gun Del Sol in the first game than in the following games.
- Your lenses level up instead. Although being nice, this introduces problems when it comes to the Star and Luna lenses.
- Eldritch Abomination:
- The final bosses of the second and third games are both horrifically powerful monstrosities called "Ancestor Pieces" who are truly immortal and require an immense amount of magic to seal into dormancy.
- Polidori's One-Winged Angel form also counts.
- Elemental Embodiment: The Terrenials in Lunar Knights, the class of being to which Otenko and Nero also belong. Interestingly, War-Rock is also counted among the terennials in the bonus crossover. There's a remarkable similarity between Trance Mode and Denpa-Henkan, one notices.
- Elemental Powers: There are roughly seven.
- Blow You Away: The Wind element.
- Casting a Shadow: The Dark element, which, in the GBA series is the exclusive purview of the most powerful vampire and has ties to Dark Energy.
- Dishing Out Dirt: The Earth element.
- Lunacy: An interesting variation on Element Number Seven; in these games, the power of the moon is reflective, and allows Lunar Children to use the other elements. This is how Sabata can use the Dark element, though it still involved some heavy and unpleasant interference from his aunt. The Piledriver is said to use this power too in order to reflect The Power of the Sun onto immortals, you can even see its symbol etched onto the mirrors when it's on its upright position.
- Making a Splash: Frost, actually.
- Playing with Fire: The Fire element, natch.
- Power Of The Sun: The Sol element, which has associations with Light, and is the element of the heroes.
- Eleventh Hour Superpower: Wild Bunch, a team attack between Django and Sabata. Never appears after the first game.
- Enemy Mine: Dumas tells Lucian and Aaron an alliance is necessary to stop the Immortals in the Epilogue. Before that, he did help them defeat the final boss Polidori from the inside. Lucian claims that when it's all over he still wants revenge.
- Escort Mission: Defeating the Immortal is not the end of it. Django then has to drag the coffin containing their body out of the dungeon to a position where he can set up the Piledriver to purify them. He suffers from reduced movement while dragging the coffin and needs to combat enemies on the way out. In the meantime, the Immortal may attempt to struggle and cause the coffin to pull away if not attended to. Fortunately, completion of the dungeon may open up a Door to Before to shorten the return trip, on top of special teleporters that can transport him with the coffin.
- Even Evil Has Standards: A scale puzzle in the third game is flooded with wisp-like Klorofolun enemies in one instance. You are supposed to leave the scales empty, and the guardians who subject you to that puzzle point out that "you can't put a weight on a soul" before stating that despite being Hel's undead, they have no love for Ratatosk and his ilk.
- Evil Tower of Ominousness: The Azure Sky Tower in the first game, the Spiral Tower in the second, Vambery and Auguste in Lunar Knights.
- Evil Aunt: The Big Bad of the first game is Hel, the sister of Django and Sabata's mother, Mani.
- Eyepatch of Power: Lucian.
- The Fatalist: Sabata in Boktai.
- Flaming Sword: In Boktai 2, all swords can be enchanted with flame and become this. The Flamberge in particular is designed to be shaped like a flame and does even more bonus damage when flame enchanted.
- Fluorescent Footsteps: The Steps of course.
- Fortune Teller: Zazie and the old sunflower girl that dies prior to Zoktai.
- Frickin' Laser Beams: The Gun Del Sol can be capable of firing beams depending on the equipped parts.
- Fusion Dance:
- Django and Otenko can temporarily merge to form Sol Django. Also in Lunar Knights, Lucian and Aaron can merge with the dark and light terrenials, respectively, to enter a more powerful form, although it has a fairly short duration.
- It's also implied in Boktai that Hel fuses with her sister, Django and Sabata's mother, Mani.
- Gangplank Galleon: Pirate Island in Boktai 3 is a dungeon where a majority of it takes place on a ship docked there. The boss of that dungeon, Nidhoggr, appears to stop Django from using the ship to get to the moon, and the first phase of the ensuing boss fight utilizes the ship's armaments to take down the Nidhoggr machine.
- Gameplay-Guided Amnesia: Django begins Shinbok with amnesia, mostly for tutorial purpose. This is explained by the shock of his "death".
- Golem: There's a whole mook family of these made of clay, stone, ice, and whatever '+' is supposed to be. Muspell from Boktai is a ginormous one and can split himself into a small army of these.
- Girls with Guns: Female Guild members in Lunar Knights. Most notably Bea, who carries a homing rocket launcher.
- Gorgeous Gorgon: Subverted with Carmilla. She's beautiful, she has snakes in her hair, and she has the ability to petrify; she is a gorgon in every sense of the word, yet the game names her as a banshee.
- Gratuitous Japanese:
- The series' signature "TAIYOOOOHHHH!" when Django charges his energy in the sunlight.
- "ANNNNKOOOOKU!" for Sabata.
- Averted in Lunar Knights; the aforementioned lines become "SUNLIGHT!" and "DARKNESS!" respectively.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Darkness, or the Will of the Galaxy-Universe, is a mysterious presence hanging in the background of all thee Gameboy Advance games; the actions of each clan of Immortals are in reference to it. The fourth game does not strictly refer to this entity, but reveals a cabal or conspiracy of other Immortalsnote .
- The Gunslinger: Nearly all of the characters. All of the Solar Children that used the Gun Del Sol, most notably Ringo and his son Django. Sabata qualifies as well, using the Gun Del Hell. The younger Smith also falls into this category, being a master of gun making, as well as teaching Ringo how to use guns. In Lunar Knights, guild members are literally called gunslingers.
- Gun Accessories: The Gun Del Sol is, for all intents and purposes, one giant mix and match of Gun Accessories.
- Guns Akimbo: The Ninja solar guns in Lunar Knights consist of two handguns capable of rapid fire.
- Hand Cannon: The Gun Del Sol is quite a bit larger than a normal handgun, although in the second and third games, Django is able to hold it with one hand. When fully upgraded, it can unleash devastating power of each element.
- Hand Wave: One that probably didn't need explaining. Before Django tackles his first Undead Dungeon, Otenko tells him that due to flaws in space-time, puzzles will be reset and enemies will respawn whenever they return to a completed dungeon. The sliding block puzzles are simply reset when you leave the room.
- Heel–Face Revolving Door: Sabata, over the course of the first three games. When he is first introduced, he is a villain. Then he becomes more on the hero side of Anti-Hero, then becomes evil once again. Justified in Boktai 3 as he was Brainwashed and Crazy.
- Hell Hound: One of the higher level mooks. Garmr's namesake is one of these.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Ringo in Boktai 2. Depending on which ending you get, any combination of Carmilla, Sabata, and/or Otenko in Boktai 3.
- Homing Projectile: The Stalker frame for the Gun Del Sol in Boktai 1 and 2, and the upgraded Witch rocket launcher in Lunar Knights.
- Hopeless Boss Fight: The prologue of Boktai 3 involves Sabata combating a mysterious beast. After a few moments of controlled combat, it soundly defeats him.
- 100% Completion: The player gains different titles for achieving different feats including filling out different sections of the Library, or S-ranking every ranked challenge. The Grand Master title goes to players who have accomplished everything. Rather infuriatingly, getting Grand Master in Lunar Knights needs completion of the soundtrack database, and the last three tracks require a standard DS system (due to lack of the Slot-2 in the 3DS) and the GBA Boktai games to unlock.
- Intercontinuity Crossover:
- MegaMan.exe helps Django out in Boktai 2 and Boktai 3. There's crossovers in the Battle Network games too.
- There are likewise Wifi-instigated crossover events between Boktai DS and Ryuusei no Rockman, though these were removed from the English localization... for some reason.
- There's an old amnesiac in Boktai 2 that is implied to be Solid Snake, himself. In Lunar Knights, one of the items you can find is the "Cool Bandana", which will automatically use a healing item should you die and was said to be once owned by a "legendary soldier".
- Isometric Projection
- Item Crafting:
- The second game uses this to a degree. While it still calls upon the series' gimmick to get the job done, and you have to have a certain skill level to forge higher level weapons, and you need to be above certain levels to use half of the weapons, it is possible to get a very good weapon for fighting That One Boss, a spear that deals extra damage when paired with the flame element...
- The first game has a variant in the Solar Tree; you can plant fruit in its roots, which causes other fruit to grow in it.
- Likewise, this is how you upgrade weapons in Lunar Knights.
- A unique variant also surfaces with regards to consumables — normally, letting certain consumables sit in your inventory for too long makes them go bad, turning them into a much weaker variant that also causes poison. However, allowing consumables to expire under certain conditions instead upgrades them into something more potent that also doesn't spoil. For instance, leaving meat in high heat and low humidity transforms it into jerky, and allowing milk to spoil in medium temperatures and humidity transforms it into yoghurt.
- Kill It with Fire: Every enemy with the frost element is subject to this.
- Subverted with Duneyrr who will leave herself vulnerable to attack if you light a chandelier that is conveniently placed in the middle of the room. Ya know what they say; a moth to a flame.
- Played HARD with the Mummies. Using the flame element will cause Mummies to burst into flames running around lighting any other mummies ablaze; they will also insta-kill golems and damage any other mook unfortunate enough to grace its path. Then after all of that, when they die, they EXPLODE. It doesn’t help that their weapon of choice is spitting out bombs that you can bounce back at them.
- Kill Sat: The Sunflower in Lunar Knights has all the aesthetics of one, but operates differently from the traditional trope. It channels sunlight used to purify the Immortals, but can't reach them on the ground due to the sunlight-blocking ParaSOL in the way; thus the protagonists have to fly the Immortals up to the Sunflower to purify them point-blank. The Sunflower eventually gets employed in a more classic manner in the final battle with Polidori, creating an opening to allow the protagonists to destroy his true body.
- Konami Code: In the first game, it can be input in one room in The Abyss, rewarding the player with a Life Fruit.
- Like Father, Like Son: Django and Sabata are similar to their mom and dad, Ringo and Mani, respectively. Mentioned by someone who is heavily implied to be the past Sunflower Girl.
Sunflower Girl: You surely are the son of that man... Yer brother's like yer mum, but you're just like yer dad."
- Light 'em Up: A central theme of the series.
- Loan Shark: Dark Loans, which will loan you sunlight energy at crazy huge interest rates (800% plus principal, or nine times what you took if you don't have any sunlight) if you happen to be playing indoors. If you don't have enough energy stored in the bank by the time the payment deadline rolls around, you'll be forced to run on a treadmill until you've made back all of the energy, unless you maxed it out, in which case Doomy lets you off with a bit less.
- Continuity Nod: In Lunar Knights, Dark Loans is mentioned as having gone bankrupt. Given that in Shinbok, you could get a special weapon by running yourself deep in debt five times over, it's not surprising this is how it happened.
- ...Except that Lunar Knights and Shinbok are alternate universes. Django's grave was never broken open in the Lunar Knights continuity, so Shinbok never happened. Probably Dark Loans' poor business practices got them screwed over in the meantime anyway.
- ...But money is practically infinite with the sun and all. Guess people don't like waiting.
- Locomotive Level: Lunar Knights sports one of these that features a Traintop Battle.
- Lunacy: When the ingame calendar detects a full moon, the player can press A at night to cause Lunar Bugs to appear. These bugs can be absorbed to heal the player. In a more extreme example, the Big Bad of the first game, Hel, can use the power of the Moon to turn the entire planet Undead, after the necessary energy sacrifices are in order.
- Magikarp Power:
- The second game's use of bare hands. Understandably they start out pathetically weak, but they grow in power each time the fist "weapon" skill and the Strength stat increases, until eventually Django can punch out the Final Boss Eldritch Abomination with relative ease. No wonder Lita likes being a Bare-Fisted Monk...note
- Also Aaron in Lunar Knights, courtesy of the game's Damage Cap and his possession of a rapid-fire capable weapon.
- Magitek: The Gun Del Sol, Including the weapons and enchantments from the Sol De Vice, and The Pile Driver, as well as the Coffin Bike and other interactive parts throughout the games.
- Marathon Level:
- The Azure Sky Tower, Dream Avenue, and Vambery. Extra points to AST for having a maximum of 99 floors, which gets tiring as soon as the floor limit reaches past 30.
- Vambery is technically longer, as each of its sections of 9 has a tenth, "Boss" floor, for a max of 100. That and all the enemies are whatever level the floor is, so you can imagine level 99 to be... painful.
- Marshmallow Hell: This happens to Django twice in the third game. Unfortunately for him, one of those times involves a girl who is a bit...flat...in addition to being the Cute Bruiser. Poor Django ends up within an inch of his life. (You only have ONE hit point after the interaction regardless of your health before.)
- The Man Behind the Man: Dumas is treated as the main villain until he's beaten, and finally Polidori explains his role.
- Meido: Lunar Knights gives us Carmilla. Frilly headpiece and everything.
- Minigame Credits: In Boktai 1, after the second playthrough, you get an item collecting mini-game during the credits roll. Boktai 2 features a mini-game during the credits where the player controls Nero as he chases Django in his mouse form while avoiding bats, bees, and bombs.
- Mirror Boss: Sabata.
- Ms. Fanservice: Bea, from Lunar Knights. She sports a very form-fitting outfit that at once shows off her endowments, hips, and the stretch of her stomach.
- Multiple Endings: Shinbok. Depending on how you fare in the final battle and which Trance you have been favouring, Sabata and/or Otenko will die. It is, however, possible to save them both.
- My Name Is ???: In Boktai, you set the protagoinist's name upon creating the save, but the narrator uses ??? on his introductory speech about Istrakan.
- Mythology Gag:
- Each of Lucian's weapons in Lunar Knights is named for one of the Final Bosses of the original GBA titles.
- A couple of bonus dungeons that can be accessed after clearing the first and third chapters are named San Miguelnote and Istrakannote respectively. Lucian's bonus weapons, found at the end of each one, have the names of the Final Boss associated with that area's game.
- Name and Name: The Japanese version of Lunar Knights is titled Bokura no Taiyou: Django & Sabata. The initials of the main characters happens to be "DS".
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast:
- The Count of Groundsoaking Blood, anyone?
- Banshee the Deathbringer is pretty high up there.
- Near Victory Fanfare: All the games have the Pile Driver music, which gets steadily more epic as you get closer to purifying the boss.
- Necessarily Evil: Duke Dumas portrays himself this way, but it's not clear whether he even rose to the level of Noble Demon beforehand. Given that Ratatosk (or the Count), implied to precede him, was in more or less open rebellion against the Galaxy-Universe the immortals serve during the third game, it's every bit as likely that Dumas killed his lord and murdered Aaron's father to keep the Galactic Immortals happy and to destabilize his biggest local opposition in one fell swoop.
- Nerf: There's actually a series-wide example with Django. In the first game, his Gun Del Sol had arguably the fastest Shooting Frequency. Then came Boktai 2, where the frequency of the Solar Gun was a little bit lowered, but had a pretty decent attacking-speed with other weapons. Fast forward to Boktai 3, and the speed of his swordslashes was downgraded so much it got even riskier to attack the enemies up front (without using certain, faster hitting weapons) and just stick with the Solar Gun, which was improved from its Boktai 2-incarnation (thanks to it being customizable again).
- Never Found the Body: Ringo.
Sabata: There's something I want to ask you. Is our Father... Is he really dead? Did you see it with your own eyes? His last moments, I mean...
Smith: ...Nobody saw his last moments... He used himself as bait to lure the Count away, so the people of the city could escape. We never found his body...
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!:
- Done double duty in Lunar Knights. It turns out Dumas was using Casket Armor, the paraSOL, and bottlenecked humans all in an attempt to protect his own people from the paraSOL's Planet Eater functionality; Lucian and Aaron taking Dumas down gives Polidori a reason to fire it up.
- Furthermore, after taking down a simulacrum of Polidori at the very top of the Vambery, a freshly revived Dumas warns them that what they just did was akin to starting a war with the Immortals, an entire race of Omnicidal Maniacs. A clear Sequel Hook if the series hadn't been effectively abandoned.
- Django has this happen in Zoktai when he gathers the tarot cards that prevent Black Dainn from entering the Aqueduct, thus allowing him to break one of the seals preventing Jormungandr from awakening.
- No Body Left Behind: Both played straight and subverted. Regular enemies will typically turn to ashes when killed or some simlar variation (like how golems explode into rubble). Subverted in the case of Immortals in that they will leave a body, which you will then put in a coffin and drag to the Piledriver where you proceed to burn their body to ashes.
- Non-Standard Game Over: Boktai 2 is pro at this. Fail to piledrive Django in time, bite Lita at night, join forces with the big bad or fail to draw enough sunlight when Jörmungandr swallows you. This last one could classify as Nightmare Fuel or Fridge Horror...
- Not Quite Dead: At the beginning of Boktai 3, Django is defeated by a mind-controlled Sabata and buried in a graveyard, only to be reanimated by his dormant vampire blood.
- Nothing but Skulls: In Boktai 3, the player fights the final boss on a pile of these. The body of the boss itself is also made of these.
- Old Save Bonus:
- Lunar Knights gives different bonuses for having the various Boktai games inserted in the GBA slot, in the form of reading the sunlight input. The Boktai games themselves have passwords at the end that can be used to carry over a character's rank.
- In Mega Man Battle Network 5: Twin Leaders putting a Boktai or Boktai 2 cartridge in the w-slot would also net bonuses; 2 (3 in Japan) netting MegaMan the overpowered Sol Cross.
- Omnicidal Maniac: The Immortals, or the major portion of the race at least, are a case of playing with this trope. The Immortals are trying to actually preserve as much of existence as they can from the threat of death and decay by using the power of darkness; they call this the will of the Galaxy-Universe. Anything that refuses to convert to their race and cause is deemed a threat and they respond to these threats by completely annihilating them with ancient Eldritch Abominations called the Ancestor Pieces. In short, if they can't "save" some part of the universe, they'll wipe it out and move on to the next.
- Our Vampires Are Different: At least justified in Lunar Knights, where the differences are because of high-powered armor, spirit familiars, etc.
- In universe example between the GBA trilogy and Lunar Knights - "vampires" and "immortals" are treated as different creatures in LK, which would suggest that the former are simply earthbound variations of the latter - it's also implied that vampires have been accepted into the earth's natural activities as another creature, which raises... interesting questions about what exactly are the plans for dealing with their morality.
- Our Liches Are Different: Aside from being able to create Skeleton enemies, Liches in Boktai 2 are given power over either lightning or fire.
- Palette Swap:
- Petting Zoo People: You'll meet anthropomorphic dogs and foxes as NPCs in Lunar Knights.
- Pirate: In Boktai 3, the dungeon Pirate Island, and the three pirate skeletons in the Dark Castle.
- Phlebotinum Battery: Django and Aaron are powered by the Sun, Lucian is powered by the Moon, and in a bit of a variation, Sabata is powered by a lack of sunlight.
- Planet Eater:
- The ParaSOL's true form is a giant space station literally named "Planet Eater Byron".
- Also Jormungandr.
- Plant Person: Red Durathror.
- The Power of the Sun: Rather the point of the series, really. It's what powers the Gun Del Sol.
- Rare Candy: Boktai 2 introduced a level system to the series. Django gets three stat points per level-up and can distribute them as he likes. But he can also find Tarot cards, of all things, and some of these increase a particular stat ala Rare Candy.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: All of the Immortals, also the vampires in Lunar Knights. Especially Hel, Jormungandr, and Vanargand.
- Also Sabata in Boktai and Shinbok.
- Retcon: A major (and, unfortunately, kind of sloppy) one happens in Lunar Knights, regarding the natures of the vampires of Earth. The first three games establish that vampires are "Immortals", beings removed from the cycle of life and death and lead by "Dark", "the will of the Galaxy-Universe". If living beings will not submit to the Undeadening (the premise of the first game), the Immortals will activate an Ancestor Piece and annihilate them instead (the premise of the second game). Ratatosk, the villain of the third game, is unique in his refusal to follow Dark's orders and instead trying to establish himself as ruler of the planet with the Ancestor Piece buried in the moon. In Lunar Knights (a timeline in which Ratatosk succeeds in his mission), the rules change a bit: the game insists that the vampires are suddenly living beings, while trying to establish the Aesop that "all life is precious". Unfortunately, the LK vampires are exactly the same in nature and powers (and are responsible for several atrocities, which deadens the empathy), including their signature preservation from the cycle of life and death (i.e. they still need to be purified). The term "Immortals" in Lunar Knights now refers to the beings responsible for placing Dumas in charge. (Are the vampires just their hick cousins from Earth)?
- Right-Hand Cat: With her talents at summoning chimerae and piloting a Humongous Mecha, Perrault is not only the Right-Hand Cat of The Dragon, but also his Battle Butler.
- The Rival: Sabata.
- Robot Girl: The robotic attendants at the Solar Bank and the store and also the seemingly more human robotic female aide to the the resident Mad Scientist.
- Rolling Attack: Golems attack by doing this; luckily for the player Inertia Is a Cruel Mistress.
- Scarf of Asskicking: Django wearing his father's crimson scarf, which becomes wings when he turns into a vampire.
- Also Sabata wears his mother's blue scarf.
- Aaron's scarf qualifies as well.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django has a textbook example in its Big Bad, Jormungandr.
- The Japan only sequel has a similar deal, except its cosmic horror, Vanargand, was sealed on the frickin' MOON. (Interestingly enough, it's called "heaven" which brings up a whole host of complications.)
- Set Bonus: Equipping all armor types from a particular set in Boktai 3 will grant a unique bonus, either by extending the duration of either Limit Break or by enabling the a Charged Attack on the Mega Buster. One particular item set even reverses the debilitating effects that its individual components would bestow.
- Short-Range Guy, Long-Range Guy: Lucian and Aaron from Lunar Knights have this arrangement - Aaron has a solar-energy charged gun while Lucian has a sword that gets more powerful at night.
- The protagonist's name is a shout out to the western of the same name, where a gunslinger named Django drags a coffin (with a machine gun inside) around.
- Sabata's name is a shout out to a film Trilogy, with the two films played by Lee Van Cleef and the third one played by Yul Brynner.
- Black cat Nero is named after Franco Nero, the actor who played Django in the film. Doubles as Stealth Pun, as Nero means Black in Italian.
- Ringo is named (and based) after the main character from A Pistol For Ringo. Doubles as a Stealth Pun, as Boktai's Ringo "steals" Django's Pistol.
- Django and Sabata's dual-attack is named "The Wild Bunch".
- ??? calls himself a Man with No Name.
- Sartana is a reference to the film of the same name.
- Trinity is a reference to the main character in the Trinity Duology.
- In Boktai 2 and Boktai 3, there are three townspeople named Ennio (who keeps the Clock Tower, the in-game clock), Luis and Marcello. In order, they're named after Ennio Morricone, Luis Enriquez Bacalov and Marcello Giombini. Morricone is best known for compossing the memorable The Good, the Bad and the Ugly main theme, Bacalov composed the original Django theme song and Giombini composed the main Sabata theme.
- Many locations are named after real cities. San Miguel is named after San Miguel de Allende in Mexico, Culiacán, Acuna (Acuña) also exist in real life Mexico.
- Sibling Team: There are two, technically three, of these present in the Boktai series.
- In Boktai: The Sun is In Your Hand Django and Sabata team-up to defeat the Queen of the Immortals, Hel.
- In Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django Django and Sabata team up twice to defeat their father, who unbeknownst to them had been turned into a vampire, and later to defeat the Black Dainn, who possesses their father's body. Both fights are fashioned the same way with a few changes here and there, hence the afore mentioned 'technically'.
- Sinister Scythe: Lucian is able to get the scythe Hel, which can split into four blades forming a claw that he can use in a spin attack.
- Sleep It Off: Black Django can recover energy by doing this... inside of a coffin.
- Solar and Lunar: The series is big on this, though with a dash of Dark Is Not Evil applying to the lunar half of the trope.
- There's even a freaking element named Luna that's the combo of Dark and Sol.
- Spaghetti Western: Yes.
- In Boktai: The Sun is in Your Hand, Django's motive for adventure is the same as his film's namesake: revenge. Except he's doing it to avenge his father instead of lover. While the setting is based on your average European Fantasy, Django's silent-hero personality and reason to adventure invoke the Western feeling, as well his duels with Sabata.
- Turned Up to Eleven in the second game, Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django. The soundtrack as a whole is inspired by music composed by Ennio Morricone in said films, as well the setting (which, incidentally, is named San Miguel, just like the town The Man with No Name tries to get some easy money in A Fistful of Dollars). A few townspeople speak with southern accent as well.
- Boktai 3 has the Western elements toned down, but still feels vaguely like that, plot-wise. In specific, the sense of danger and nostalgia is similar to the Twilight-Era Spaghetti Westerns (the last ones made when the genre died).
- Lunar Knights involves Lucian, whose reason to hunt vampires is pure Anti-Heroism, similar to the Spagheti Western-genre anti-hero. In specific, he wants to avenge his lover, no matter the cost. Where did I heard that before?
- Spiritual Successor: To Metal Gear: Ghost Babel, which was developed by the same staff.
- Sprite Mirroring
- Sunny Sunflower Disposition: The sun spirit Otenko. Diddo with Toasty from Lunar Knights.
- Super Title 64 Advance: The Japanese title of Lunar Knights.
- A Taste of Power: Boktai 2 starts Django off with his very high-level Dragoon Frame and enough ENE to fire a hundred times before recharging, on top of being able to one-shot enemies. Sadly, it never gets back up to 100 percent until Shinbok; its partially repaired version sucking up fifty times the ENE for half the damage, on top of being locked in (a slightly upgraded) Knight and the Sol Lens.
- Temporal Paradox: Trinity causes one of these, specifically a Grandfather Paradox, when he accidentally breaks a tombstone that was sealing Django in the Underground Prison. This leads to Django living when he, originally, should have died. Thus Shinbok is the universe where Django lives and Lunar Knights the one where he died.
- Time Travel: The Boktai universe features a few examples.
- Part of how the Doomsday Phenomenon works is that the undead can slip travel through time and recover, however, it only works in certain areas affected by the phenomenon. Essentially this is how the game accounts for Respawning Enemies.
Otenko: It's here... Can you feel it? The presence of the Undead...We're not in the city anymore. This is an Undead Dungeon. Every time you enter an Undead Dungeon, all traps and enemy monsters return to their original state. It's all part of the Doomsday Phenomenon. Be sure to stay alert, Django!
- Boktai 2 features a dungeon called the House of Time which allows the player to go backwards and fowards through two points in time.
???: This is the House of Time... a distorted time space where past and present collapse.
- Another example is the events that occur in Shinbok, see Temporal Paradox above.
- Title Drop: Django and Sabata's use of "Our Sun!" (aka "Bokura no Taiyō!") in the first game, Lucian merely dropping the name of his game at the end of the Epilogue.
- Theme Naming: And how.
- Django, Sabata, Ringo, Trinity and Sartana are all named after the protagonists of Spaghetti Western films.
- Ennio, Luis and Marcello are named after profilic Italian composers who all compossed music in many well known films.
- In the first three games there's a heck of a lot of names from Norse mythology as far as plot-important enemies are concerned.
- In Lunar Knights, a lot of antagonists and side characters are named after authors of some persuasion.
- The terrenials are all named after authors of children's books except Nero and Toasty/Otenko. Nero is named after Franco Nero, who played the original Django in the Western film.
- The Schrödinger is a Mobile Fighter operated by a cat terrenial whose power was split into two separate terrenials. Crosses the line between this and a Stealth Pun.
- The above terrenial, incidentally, is named after the author of "Puss in Boots".
- Also, we've missed the attendant shout out with the second mobile fighter, Laplace (piloted by Lucian and Aaron). Pierre-Simon Laplace was a mathematical/physical astronomer who was born in the mid-eighteenth century. Ignoring for the moment his actual achievements, one of the things he is most remembered for articulating causal or scientific determinism, and more particularly the postulation that if there was an "intelligence" that was aware of the location and motion of each and every atom in the universe, it could know all past and future events by calculating from the laws of classical mechanics. In the age of Newton, the idea caught on, and people began talking about "Laplace's Demon" (which he never actually called it). So basically, the Laplace and Schrodinger fighters are named for thought-experiments about knowing everything and knowing nothing.
- The last bosses of each game of the original 3 games. They're EACH named for a child of Loki. Subsequently, Lucian's weapons.
- Thunderbolt Iron: Boktai 2 lets Django find a small meteorite which can be forged into a unique Star melee weapon, which gains power as you do and uses solar energy directly from the Solar Station reserves rather than Django's much smaller energy bar.
- Total Eclipse of the Plot: Ratatosk's plan in Boktai 3 requires a Lunar Eclipse.
- Underground Monkey: Used in all four games, though sometimes coloration is used as a hint to its elemental affinity. This is more egregious in Lunar Knights, where many enemies are colored solely by affinity - namely, the Ghouls, Vorns, Slimes, Hounds, and Chloroformin' come in different colors on this alone. The Slimes, strangely enough, are the only ones in this group that come in Sol flavor.
- Unexpected Shmup Level: A rather unfortunate design decision was made in Lunar Knights to cap off every boss fight with a ten minute long unskippable space shooter level. Making the shooter levels even harder is that the DS stylus is used to move your ship and to fire your guns, so you can only do one or the other at any given time.
- Utopia Justifies the Means: Polidori's reasoning for giving the vampires control of Earth.
Polidori:But don't you find it all a bit pointless? Humans and vampires have fought one another since the days of folklore. Sometimes the humans are victorious, and sometimes fortune favors the vampires, but in the end they always destroy each other... A cycle with no end. What purpose could there possibly be behind such a struggle? Imagine, if you will, a utopia, free of conflict... Isn't that a goal worth working towards?
Lucian: Heh... Are you trying to tell me that this town is some kind of paradise? Living like a slave? With a collar around your neck...? You call that a utopia?
Polidori: The life of the individual is not the issue here. We must consider the future of this planet... of the entirety of the cosmos. Those who cannot do so have no right to govern over this world.
- Voice Grunting: While there is some full voice-acting during the animated cutscenes in Lunar Knights, most other instances of consists of grunts and short phrases during dialogue.
- Warring Natures:
- Toward the beginning of Boktai 2: Solar Boy Django, Django is turned into a vampire. Although Django is eventually purified, he is stuck as half-vampire, half solar child. He continues his fight against The Undead and the Immortals, although he is given the option to join them, which, if selected, results in a Game Over.
- Boktai 3: Sabata's Counterattack kicks this Up To Eleven by adding Sol Django. Using one "nature" more times than the other even changes the ending of the game.
- Warrior Poet: Django. In the first two games, he rarely talks, saying mostly exclamations. The few times he says more than two words he is this trope. This is subverted in the third game, where he becomes a bit more talkative and less poetic.
Django: That day, the Black Shadow that stopped Jormungandr in its tracks... Was that father? Or...
Lady: The infamous... Shadow Immortal?
Django: I don't know... But when the light is strong the shadows thrown out become a deeper Darkness. The dark is scary... But around dusk, I always think the same thing... It's those dark shadows that allow the world to be so...
Lady: Beautiful... I reckon. You're a bit of a poet, aren't you, Django?
- Wave Motion Gun : The Pile Driver (Especially with the "Wild Bunch" attack), The Purifex Cannon.
- We Can Rule Together: Black Dainn to Django in the Spiral Tower. If the player accepts, the game ends on the bad ending. If the player rejects, the boss fight activates.
Black Dainn: Django, I'll ask you once... Join us! Become our Dark Sun!
- With a Friend and a Stranger: In Boktai 3, Django is the main character, Master Otenko is his old friend, and Trinity is the stranger.
- With This Herring: In all his adventures, Django is forced to start off his quest to stop forces capable of rendering the Earth itself undead with the clothes on his back and a banged-up solar weapon that has just enough energy to knockout a handful of Mooks without a recharge.
- Yin-Yang Bomb: In Boktai 2, Django became afflicted with vampirism, changing his entire moveset. He had to avoid the sun to keep from burning himself (unless he used sunscreen), could sneak behind enemies to drain their health into himself (normal food hurt him) and could sleep in his coffin he always carried to recharge his energy. After one dungeon, he gained the ability to switch between Human Django and Vampire Django.
- You Have Failed Me: Polidori to Dumas in Lunar Knights.
Lucian: I thought you were just supposed to be an "observer".
Polidori: That was my intention, yes... But my intentions have changed, now that the Duke has been defeated. I must admit, this outcome was entirely unforeseen.
Polidori: Without the technology that we have, I would not be able to stand here before you... This is why we allowed you and your vampires to take control of this planet. However... It appears that not even the vampires are worthy enough to govern this world.
- You Killed My Father: Subverted for Django. He wants to kill the Count for killing his father, but it turns out his father is not dead, but instead turned into a vampire by the Count. Played straight for Aaron, whose father really is dead.
- Young Gun: The two brothers, Django and Sabata. They both inherited their guns from their father and aunt, respectively. In Lunar Knights, Aaron also falls under this category.