''Eye of the Beholder'' is a trilogy (or just [[CanonDisContinuity a pair]]) of [[RolePlayingGame RPGs]] developed in the early nineties, the first two by Creator/WestwoodStudios that would later be known from games such as ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquer'', and the third one by Strategic Simulations Inc., that also published all three games.

The games use a simplified version of the rules for ''[[TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons Advanced Dungeons & Dragons]]'' 2nd edition, in the ''TabletopGame/ForgottenRealms'' campaign setting.

All games are first-person, and feature an adventure party, between four to six members, going on quests and fighting evil. The first game has them hired by the lords of Waterdeep to investigate an evil residing under the city. It had an AbsurdlySpaciousSewer, not just one but ''two'' ruins of lost civilizations beneath Waterdeep, and an [[AWinnerIsYou infamous ending,]] where the player was treated a window of text before dumping them back to DOS (the Amiga version, however, added a proper ending cutscene). The second, generally thought to be the best of the series, involves the party checking out an ancient temple for Khelben "Blackstaff" Arunsun. It had more roleplaying content and much better ending.

The third game, assuming you're willing to [[FanonDisContinuity acknowledge its existence,]] sends the player into the ruined city of Myth Drannor. It was not made by the original developers, and is generally considered a massive disappointment.

A {{spiritual successor}}, ''VideoGame/LandsOfLore'', was created by Westwood in lieu of a third ''Eye of the Beholder'' after the split with SSI over [[ExecutiveMeddling creative differences.]]

A remake of the first game was released for the Super Nintendo, and later for the Game Boy Advance. It was also ported to Mega CD, with music composed by YuzoKoshiro. Note that this remake diverges quite a lot from the original game, both in game mechanics and in that it adds sub-boss enemies.

The trilogy is now available on Website/GogDotCom as ''[[http://www.gog.com/game/forgotten_realms_the_archives_collection_one Forgotten Realms: The Archive Collection One]]''


* AbsurdlySpaciousSewer: The first game begins in Waterdeep's sewers.
* AntidoteEffect: In the first game, you can find potions of counterpoison in the {{Giant Spider}}s level. Quite necessary, since at that time your cleric isn't high level enough to cast ''Neutralize Poison'', only the weaker ''Delay Poison'' spell, which just gains you some time.
* ArbitraryHeadcountLimit: You start the game with four characters, even when importing to the sequels. You may get upto six. The second game also has an NPC that runs off, but he won't do it if you reduce your party size after recruiting him.
* ArtificialStupidity:
** Xanathar's can be exploited -- as well as the doors' tendency to block all projectiles, including magical ones -- to fight him in relative safety since he can't open the doors (which also allows you to rest in the middle of the battle).
** A lot of enemies follow a given pattern of movement and don't change it unless having a straight line to the party, or being themselves attacked. This include enemies patrolling behind a door; some doors allows projectiles to go through, but the target won't change its pattern or open the door even if pelted with arrows.
%%* BagOfSpilling: Averted (see OldSaveBonus below).
* BraggingRightsReward: In ''[=EotB3=]'', an optional dungeon called The Mausoleum near the start of the game gives you a "Rod of Restoration" as a reward... guess where the only enemies that use what it cures are.
* ClingyMacGuffin: There's a few undroppable cursed items in ''[=EotB2=]'' that will weld themselves to your hand. However, getting rid of them just require one ''Remove Curse'' spell, which is accessible to both mages and clerics. So it's only a problem if your characters are too low level to cast it (or can't rest and regain spells, but then you have a much bigger problem on your hands).
* ControlRoomPuzzle: Subverted in ''[=EotB1=]'': in one of the later floors, there is a room labeled "Combination Lock -- Be Quick" with 5 switches and a group of items on the other side of a pit (by this point, the game has already established that pits can be moved or gotten rid of entirely). Each time a switch is hit, the party must move quickly to dodge a fireball that gets launched from the other end of the room. The player obviously thinks that they need to find the right combination to get rid of the pits; the catch, though, is that it's actually impossible to remove the pits, the switches do nothing, and it's just an excuse to frustrate the player.
* DeadEndRoom: ''[=EotB2=]'' has two No Exit examples.
** In Temple Level 2, placing three gems in a niche opens a secret passage. If you go through it and into a room, the passage closes behind you and you're trapped forever.
** In a room on Silver Tower Level 2, if you kill a dying Darkmoon cleric, the door out of the room closes and traps the party inside permanently. Reload your last saved game.
* DegradedBoss:
** Between the first two games, beholders. Xanathar is the FinalBoss of ''[=EotB1=]'' and the only one seen in this game; in ''[=EotB2=]'' there's a dungeon level full of them. Your party should be high level enough to handle them at the time, but they're still to be fought with caution, especially when confronted by a pair.
** The first guardian daemon you encounter in ''[=EotB2=]'' is a MacGuffinGuardian, and a dangerous fight since you confront it at the end of a section where you can't use magic or healing. (Plus, it's a lengthy corridor where you have nowhere to hide from its {{fireballs}}.) Later in the game, though, guardian daemons are the standard monsters of a level.
* DiscOneNuke: The magic dagger Guinsoo, obtainable in the very first level of the original game. However, [[GuideDangIt you may never figure out how to get it...]] Although it sounds impressive to have a +4 weapon at low-level, it really only deals 5 to 8 points of damage on a hit. Also, you don't ''know'' it is a +4 weapon, this might be more of a GuideDangIt territory, at least until you reach the Identify Alcove, which you don't ''know'' is an Identify Alcove.
* DisintegratorRay: The ''Disintegrate'' spell, and the beholders' most deadly attack (although, see NormallyIWouldBeDeadNow below).
* DoubleMeaning: Deep in the first game, at the start of the Mind Flayer level, a wall engraving reads "Alignment must be true". Since this is a ''D&D'' game, you'd expect it to be a cryptic mention about CharacterAlignment. [[spoiler:In truth, it's a hint about how to open the next secret passage, which is a the end of an ''alignment'' of hidden doors.]]
* DummiedOut: There is a removed area in the very first level of the first game, containing a portal and an unused portal key.
* EightiesHair: The Drow named Shindia Darkeyes.
* FanRemake: Using the modding toolset from ''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights'', the first two installments are available [[http://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn1/module/eye-beholder-i-mk2-eobhakver57z here]] and [[http://neverwintervault.org/project/nwn1/module/eye-beholder-ii here]] .
* FauxFirstPerson3D
* {{Fireballs}}: Not only the spell itself, but there's also plenty of traps that would launch a fireball at the unlucky victims.
* GiantMook: ''[=EotB2=]'' places frost giants within one of the dungeon levels. They are crawling within the 10' cube, and are able to hit three characters in a single punch.
* TheGoomba: The kobolds in ''[=EotB1=]''.
* InterchangeableAntimatterKeys: The "antimatter" part is handled by the keys being jammed in the locks. The 3rd game actually averts this in several spots.
* LeapOfFaith:
** A puzzle sequence in the first game includes a part where you must jump down a pit in order to continue, an act that would normally injure everybody in the party. A nearby wall engraving reads "one leap of faith", and upon actually jumping down the pit, the party takes no damage.
** In ''[=EotB2=]'', there is a puzzle for which the clue is given of "faith is the key." In the puzzle, a sequence of 4 doors in a corridor must be opened by pulling four levers such that each lever opens a pit in front of the previous one, meaning that the fourth door-opener lever is inaccessible across a pit (albeit not a [[BottomlessPit bottomless one]], since the game doesn't have those). The trick, in this case, was to open the first 3 doors, walk down the partially opened corridor, and push a [[PixelHunt misaligned brick]] on the wall, at which point it becomes possible for the player to make a LeapOfFaith and walk on top of the pit in order to pull the 4th lever and open the last door.
* LevelGrinding: Some actions or locations will spawn monsters regularly and foreseeably. This can be used to grind [=XPs=] pretty quickly with a party properly prepared for the specific enemy, if you're patient enough.
** ''[=EotB1=]'':
*** The most useful place early on is the kenku (bird-men) level. They're worth a lot of [=XPs=] but are not terribly dangerous once you neutralize their main attack (''Magic Missiles'') with a pair of mages protected by a ''Shield'' spell in the front row.
*** In the deepest level, there's a spot where you can create stone golems at will, as long as you have black spheres, stones and potions (any potions, including some pretty useless ones by this level like healing or counterpoison, or even [[PoisonMushroom poison potions]]). Golems are dangerous because of their immunity to offensive magic, but are slow and can be handled with projectiles and your mages focusing on {{Status Buff}}s instead.
** ''[=EotB2=]'':
*** There are spots where a will-o-wisp or a bulette will automatically appears as soon as you step in. Dangerous monsters in either case, but once again worth lots of [=XPs=], and easily handled by a well-prepared party.
*** Deeper in, a specific corridor automatically surround the party with a pair of mages. Trickier, but since they're {{Squishy Wizard}}s and always open the hostilities with ''Magic Missiles'', you have a good chance of killing one and getting out of the way before the other pulls out the {{Fireballs}}.
*** At another place, a salamander will be behind a door every time you walk before it. With enough ''Cones of Cold'', you can kill it before the door is fully open.
* LiteraryAllusionTitle: "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" is a phrase from the 1878 novel ''Molly Bawn''.
* LockedDoor: The first game has a handful of locks that you can pick, but only on the second level; and if you happen not to have a rogue in your party, the game adds extra keys so that you don't need to pick them.
* MacGuffinDeliveryService: ''[=EotB3=]''. A mysterious figure sends you off to kill a lich. Once you finally manage, it turns out [[spoiler:[[OurLichesAreDifferent to have been a good lich]] (despite the fact that he, you know, tried to kill you) and the mysterious figure teleports in, gets an unnamed MacGuffin, reveals himself to be the evil dark god, and flees. The rest of the game is spent chasing him]].
* MadeOfExplodium:
** ''[=EotB1=]'': Explosives Runes, but only in the remakes.
** ''[=EotB2=]'': Gas spores.
* MasterOfUnlocking: The thief class, but not really. Most locks in the game are unpickable, and for every lock that you can pick, a key will be added if your party doesn't have a thief.
* MeaningfulName: Dran Draggore [[spoiler:is secretly a dragon, duh]].
* MooksAteMyEquipment:
** The rust monsters in ''[=EotB1=]'' will eat any metal item.
** The gelatinous cubes in ''[=EotB2=]'' can also destroy items on a hit.
** The black puddings in ''[=EotB3=]'' will eat your weapons if you attack them in melee.
* MoonLogicPuzzle: Every dungeon level of the first game has a special secret that you can discover if you perform a specific sequence of actions on that level (the first level's is the aforementioned DiscOneNuke)... and the game only gives ''very'' obtuse hints about what those actions are. For example, put rations in the closet labeled "pantry", or eggs in the room labeled "nest".
* {{Nerf}}:
** The complete disappearance of the ''Stoneskin'' spell in ''[=EotB2=]'', even with an imported party from ''[=EotB1=]'', for whom it vanishes from spellbooks (and a ''Stoneskin'' scroll can't be saved either). See the [[GameBreaker/RolePlaying Game Breaker]] entry for why.
** The TurnUndead function also get modified between the two games, as mentioned below.
* NormallyIWouldBeDeadNow: In ''[=EotB1=]'', Xanathar's DisintegratorRay, by ''AD&D'' rules, should kill instantly, but instead inflicts exactly 100 HP of damage. NoOneShouldSurviveThat, right? Well, except if you have a high-level dwarf fighter with 19 in Constitution and the maximum possible on each roll (thanks to SaveScumming and LevelGrinding)... that character can perfectly have more than 100 HP by the end.
* OldSaveBonus: The sequel can be started with the party from the first game -- along with all their equipment, containing a significant amount of weapons and armor that outclass everything available in the second game. If you play it right, you end up with at least three +5 weapons and a dozen +5 darts, whereas the best weapon available late in the sequel is only +4.
* OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame: Most of the [=NPCs=] that can join you in the first game are dwarves. All are fighters with AnAxeToGrind and preferring heavy armor, practically identical except in stats. The dwarves that can be seen in large amounts in their camp are, other than a single exception, ''literally'' all the same: your basic bearded, heavily-armored, axe-wielding type.
* TheParalyzer: Several monsters have this power.
** Most annoyingly the thri-kreen, which are so fast that almost without fail one of your front-row fighters will be paralyzed before even having the time to strike on his own.
** The mind flayers' psychic blast is a ''distance'' paralyzing attack, and can affect several [=PCs=] at once. Your cleric better have several ''Remove Paralysis'' spells ready... and if the cleric himself is paralyzed, you're out of luck.
** On the other hand, if a beholder ''just'' paralyses some members of the party, you've gotten off lucky.
* PlayerCharacterCalculus: The series put an unusual spin on this: at the start of each game, you can create a party of four customizable [=PCs=], but the actual limit is six, as you can additionally recruit up to two predefined [=NPCs=] you meet on your adventures.
* PoisonMushroom: In ''[=EotB1=]'', some apparently useful potion flasks contain poison. And in this game, it's not easy to identify them early on (although SaveScumming helps).
* PressurePlate: Full of them.
* PuzzleBoss: In the first game, Xanathar the beholder can be easily defeated by [[spoiler:using a wand to push him into a spiked trap]]. He can be killed by regular means as well, though.
* SaveScumming: Quite useful, especially if you save just before a character gain a level (and thus can "re-roll" the HitPoints for a better result).
* ScaledUp: [[spoiler:Dran Draggore turns out to be a dragon.]]
* SchmuckBait: If you're warned to not enter the room full of awesome magical items... you shouldn't.
* SoLongAndThanksForAllTheGear: Played completely straight with one character in ''[=EotB2=]'' . A {{halfling}} you meet early in the game is locked up, and you have the option to free him. However, the first time you camp with him in the party, he runs off and takes, not the equipment he's carrying specifically, but ''some of the gear of the sleeping party members''. Well, you should have expected it; he's a Thief (the CharacterClass). He even leaves a note basically invoking this trope by name.
* StatusBuff: Both Mages and Clerics have spells like this. They are quite useful, though for the most part with very short duration (except for the aforementioned ''Stoneskin'').
** ''Aid'' is a good cleric spell to absorb damage. Especially handy if you know you're going to get hurt, like by jumping down a pit.
** ''Haste'' is probably the best choice on the mage side, especially since a single casting can affect the whole party.
** In the first game only, ''Stoneskin'' can make your whole party nearly invulnerable to physical attacks. No wonder it got removed from the later games.
* StockFemurBone: Most of the bones found in ''[=EotB2=]''. They can be used as clubs.
* TakeYourTime: The games even inform the player about the amount of time that had passed while the party is resting, but no matter how many days you spend sleeping, the BigBad never quite get around to completing his nefarious plans.
* TurnRed: [[spoiler:Literally for Dran Draggore, who happens to a red dragon.]]
* TurnUndead: A power for the cleric or the paladin, along with the ''D&D'' rules. In ''[=EotB1=]'' it is an automatic function, as long as the character is holding a holy symbol. Starting with ''[=EotB2=]'', it becomes an action like any spell-casting, though not limited in use.
* UndignifiedDeath: Tod Uphill in the first game died by falling down into the sewer. He is not happy about this if the party resurrects him.
* UngratefulBastard: At one point in ''[=EotB2=]'', you have the option to help out a beholder stuck into a circular hole in the ceiling. If you choose so, it thanks you... and then immediately attacks the party because it's hungry.
* UnknownItemIdentification:
** The first game has the ''Detect Magic'' spell to determine whether an item is magical, but doesn't reveal what powers a magic item has, until you use one of two "oracle" places deep in the dungeon that are powered by black spheres.
** The second game adds an ''Improved Identify'' spell for this purpose.
* UniversalPoison: Every poisons in the games, whether from monsters or potions, work the same way: the poisoned character lose 5 hit points at regular intervals, until death or healing.
* UnwinnableByMistake: From ''[=EotB2=]'', in the level with flying cobras and gas spores, you can encounter a priest of Darkmoon lost in the maze and standing on a pressure plate. If you kill him, [[DeadEndRoom the door to the room closes with no way to open it]], forcing you to reload the last saved game. There is a way to keep the door open, however (to get the treasures next to the priest), by luring beforehand a monster into the frame and paralyzing it or turning it to stone; the door then can't close even if the pressure plate is released. This clearly wasn't anticipated by the makers, though, since the whole level gets wonky afterward. Notably, the monsters now all look like priests (but still makes flying cobras sound and can poison you). Not quite a GameBreakingBug as you can still continue playing, but if you've done so before solving the riddle for exiting this level -- which is done by feeding various items to a series of magic mouths in the walls -- then you are stuck because the magic mouths are no longer there.
* VoiceWithAnInternetConnection: Khelben Blackstaff, in the second game. Subverted once, [[spoiler:when it's actually the bad guy in disguise. He tells you to go to the next room and drop dead, almost literally. Considering your last conversation was [[LostInTransmission abruptly cut off]] by a magic barrier, it should be fairly obvious that something's fishy -- in the Amiga version, it also plays [[MusicalSpoiler distinctly different background music]] for the cutscene.]]
* WarpZone: The magic portals, especially the room with five of them in ''[=EotB1=]''.
* AWinnerIsYou: The MS-DOS version of the first game is notorious for its anticlimactic ending. [[spoiler:After defeating Xanathar, a simple message box appears, describing the party's rescue and the following celebrations -- and then the game boots you back to the DOS prompt.]]
* WizardNeedsFoodBadly: Not so much of an issue though, as the game gives you more than enough rations to last until your cleric can learn a very useful ''Create Food'' spell, that instantly fills the entire party's hunger bars. The first game actually contains enough food to make it through ''without'' the ''Create Food'' spell -- although adventuring without a cleric is a bad idea for other reasons.
* YouAllMeetInAnInn: How the third game begins, complete with a dubious cloaked individual offering the party a job.