[[quoteright:200:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/trucos_Fossil_Fighters_DS-825_9874.jpg]]
->''"Awaken an era."''
[[caption-width-right:200:Can you dig it?]]

A {{Mons}} series from Creator/{{Nintendo}} and Creator/RedEntertainment, ''Fossil Fighters'' (''Kaseki Horider'', or "Fossil Hunters", in Japan) is a collection Mon RPG/paleontology sim series for the DS and 3DS.

On the tropical Vivosaur island, the Richmond archaeological foundation has built a fantastic resort. Using the brilliance of Dr. Diggins, they have developed a process to revive dead animals from fossil fragments. ([[Film/JurassicPark Sound familiar?]]) As a side-effect of this process, the dead animals are not complete copies of the creatures they originally were in life--they gain unusual appearances and best of all--superpowers. Vivosaur Island has become a playground for the rich where wealthy young dinosaur fanatics can revive extinct animals in the form of superpowered monsters and fight them against each other for glory and fame.

Like most games, this one stars a [[KidHero young boy]] (or girl, starting with the second game) who aspires ToBeAMaster. You hunt fossils, battle other fans, and raise in the ranks, with the help of his friends. But the island is lousy with groups of fossil thieves and general schemers who, naturally, want to TakeOverTheWorld.

Games in the series:
* ''Fossil Fighters'' (''Bokura wa Kaseki Horider'', or "We Are Fossil Hunters", in Japan), 2008 JP/2009 US Nintendo DS
* ''Fossil Fighters: Champions'' (''Super Kaseki Horider'', or "Super Fossil Hunters" in Japan), 2010 JP/2011 US Nintendo DS: THis game features improved, [[CelShaded cel-shaded graphics]] (with FMV cutscenes), a female player character, a revamped movement system, new islands, new villains, and the ability to Super Revive certain Vivosaurs into evolved forms.
* ''Fossil Fighters: Frontier'' (''Kaseki Horider Mugengear'', or "Fossil Hunters Infinite Gear" in Japan), 2014 JP/2015 US Nintendo 3DS: The new feature for this title is the ability to fight wild Vivosaurs and to drive around in customizable vehicles. The combat system has also been entirely overhauled.
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!! This game provides examples of:

* AbsentMindedProfessor: Dr. Diggins in the first game, Professor Scatterly in ''Champions''.
* AbsurdlyLowLevelCap: In the first game, it's set surprisingly low at just twelve, and you can get as high as rank eight by fossil cleaning alone (''ten'' if you get a full set of rare red fossils). The second game ups the cap to 20, though viviosaurs gain stats more slowly to go with it.
* AcceptableHobbyTargets: InUniverse. The three commanders of the Barebones Brigade? They're a hipster, a hippie, and a metalhead. The game especially has fun taking potshots at Cole, the hipster, and Todd remarks that it's no wonder everyone was so terrified of him.
** [[spoiler: It's later {{deconstructed}}. The fact that they were such acceptable targets meant [[FriendlessBackground no one wanted to have anything to do with them]], meaning they desperately attached themselves to the first charismatic figure who appeared to them and had no trouble [[WhosLaughingNow turning on those who mocked them]]. But it's also why, despite the fact that they were used, they can't stay mad at said figure--they know he tried to do what he thought was right, and they were ecstatic that they'd been shown ''any'' [[BecauseYouWereNiceToMe kindness at all]].]]
* AdventurerArchaeologist: Nevada Montecarlo, who is a DarkSkinnedRedhead version of [[Franchise/TombRaider Lara Croft]] (with Franchise/IndianaJones' whip).
** ''Champions'' has an even more direct CaptainErsatz of Franchise/IndianaJones called Joe Wildwest.
* AllNaturalGemPolish: Everything you find in the Jewel Rocks.
* AncientAstronauts: [[spoiler:The dinaurians.]]
* AndYourRewardIsClothes: The first two games include a series of masks that your character can collect and wear.
* AgentPeacock: Ryne from the ''Champions'' DLC. He wears the only pink Brigade suit in the game and draws attention to himself because of it. But he is also the first character in the franchise to actually make his own Vivosaur, discounting [[spoiler: Zongazonga and his [[PurpleIsTheNewBlack purple evil]] zombiesaurs. [[WordSchmord Magic shmagic.]] [[MemeticMutation Booo!]]]]
* AmbiguouslyGay: Cole in ''Champions''. It's hard to tell which parts of his campness just come from his obsession with fashion, and which parts come from... somewhere else.
* AnnouncerChatter: In the first two games, the two announcers like to prattle on with each other about nonsensical things only tangentially related to the battles taking place.
* AntiFrustrationFeatures: ''Frontier'' cleans up some of the issues with finding fossils in the field; identifying fossils on sight and allowing immediate excavations, rather than requiring the player to haul an entire inventory back to base before they even know what they have. Vivosaurs can also be revived from any fossils, not just the heads.
* ArtEvolution: ''Champions'' featured a much more detailed, and more {{Animesque}}, art style than the original's more cartoony look.
** ArtShift: [[spoiler: Rosie's icon in ''Champions'' is in the same style as the first game, making her stand out next to the anime-style characters from the second game.]]
** ''Fossil Fighters: Frontier'' seems to have significant change in the design of... just about everything, really.
* ArtisticLicensePaleontology: Fully justified by the fact that vivosaurs are explicitly stated to be dinosaur-''like'' creatures and not actual dinosaurs. Beyond that, it's generally averted since the creators have ShownTheirWork and keep their data as accurate as possible.
* AuthorAvatar: The first game's announcers are the game's two creators, and the idea of putting them in the game started out as a joke.
* AwesomeButImpractical: Many high-level vivosaurs with really high Attack or LP are devastating from the Attack Zone... but if they end up in the Support Zone somehow, they'll turn your attacker into a quivering pile of useless mush. T-Rex is a perfect example--he has the highest attack in the game and can attack all of your enemies at once, but, if he ends up in the support zone, he reduces all your attacker's stats by ''30%!''
** Zino and Centro. Every hit from them will be a critical-but their accuracy is so terrible that the rest of the team needs to be focused around buffing accuracy/evasion stats to get them to even land a hit. In other words: CriticalHitClass meets ATeamFiring.
* AwesomeMcCoolname: Joe Wildwest in ''Champions'' and Captain Stryker in ''Frontier''.
* [[BadJobWorseUniform Bad Sidequest, Worse Costume]]: So... how 'bout that Hare Club? Y'know, the one where you have to wear a bunny mask, then clean 100 fossils to 80 points or higher?
* BagOfHolding: We really have ''no'' idea how a twelve-year-old can lug around up to ''64'' fossils as long as his entire body and not get sore, esecially when some of those rocks contain an ''entire skeleton''. Justified and averted in ''Frontier'', where A) you travel by car, which can much more easily accommodate the size and weight, and B) fossils are processed automatically, so you're not even carrying them around in the first place.
* BigOlEyebrows: The samurai, with a BigOlUnibrow chaser.
* BittersweetEnding: Subverted in the first game. [[spoiler:Guhnash]] is defeated, but your partner didn't quite make it out of [[spoiler:stone sleep]]. You've saved the world, at a cost, and that's how it has to be... [[spoiler:and then the Digadig chieftain shows up and tells you to use the hip-shaker dance!!]]
* BlackAndNerdy: Dr. Diggins in the first game is a professional-grade [[Series/{{Scrubs}} blerd]]. Who's dorky enough to wear shorts and a Hawaiian shirt beneath his lab coat, no less.
* BluntMetaphorsTrauma: It's no wonder Nick Nack mangles foreign languages so bad--he barely gets ''English!'' "I can have my snacks and feet them too!"
* BodySurf: This is how [[spoiler:Zongazonga's immortality spell]] works in ''Champions''. His latest victim is actually [[spoiler:the owner of the Fossil Park, Joe Wildwest.]]
* BonusBoss: After you beat the final boss of the first game, almost ''every character you've fought before becomes a BonusBoss.'' Almost all of them have maxed-out teams, some of them you have to fight one right after the other, and the prizes for beating them range from "BraggingRightsReward" to "OlympusMons." You can even take on the FinalBoss again as often as you like! The most difficult BonusBoss fight, however, is probably against [[spoiler: Dynal, Duna, and Raptin]] ''all at once.''
** There's also an {{Early Bird|Boss}} BonusBoss named Petey, who requires you fight him with three very specific vivosaurs. If you take the time to max out said three and wait until you're near the end of the game, he's not so tough... But try him ''without'' copius LevelGrinding, and he proves to be quite the KillerRabbit.
* ABoyAndHisX: Thanks to the player getting a sidekick, ''Frontier'' is a "Boy/Girl and his/her dinosaur" story.
* ButtBiter: A RunningGag in ''Frontier'' involves your little vivosaur sidekick chomping down on Nate's butt. In the little guy's defense, Nate is usually literally asking for it by sticking his butt out and taunting him.
* ButtMonkey: Rosie.
* CallARabbitASmeerp: The names have been changed to emphasize that Vivosaurs aren't really dinosaurs, and to trim down the {{Overly Long Name}}s that real dinos often have. There's a mode that gives detailed information on the animals that inspired each dinosaur.
* CanonName: The main character of the first doesn't really have one, but Nintendo's guide suggests "Buckland", after an early paleontologist. The official mini-manga gives his name as "Hunter." The second game's protagonists, though, are [[AnimalThemeNaming Dino and Dina]].
** ''Frontier'' has nameable protagonists "Jura" and "Tria". The puns just don't stop. The canonical name for their little dino sidekick is "Nibbles".
* CardboardPrison: Only in the first game, but it's exaggerated. [[PoliceAreUseless What happens in that police station is anybody's guess.]]
* CelShading: ''Champions'' uses cel-shaded graphics, as well as more detailed graphics in general.
* ChekhovsSkill: [[spoiler:The hip-shaking dance, used to revive Rosie/Duna from tainted stone sleep.]]
* [[TheChiefsDaughter The Chief's Granddaughter]]: [[spoiler:Pauleen.]]
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Trip Cera in the second game. His first name [[WhatDoYouMeanItWasntMadeOnDrugs seems appropriate]].
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: The vast majority of Vivosaurs are absent in ''Frontier'', in particular nearly all of the non-dinosaur Vivosaurs are gone, with the exception of a few pterosaurs.
* CollectorOfTheStrange: Since you can't use them to revive vivosaurs, nobody wants dropping fossils. Except Nick Nack...
** John Guano replaces him in the sequel. John's even ''weirder,'' if that's possible. He's standing not three feet away from a lady who offers dropping fossils in exchange for fossil cleaning. The only catch is, he'd have to wear the Hare Mask to join the club to do so. EveryoneHasStandards?
* CombatCommentator: In ''Fossil Fighters'', they're {{Author Avatar}}s. In ''Champions'' we have a two talking Vivosaurs. ''Frontier'' doesn't have any announcers.
* ContinuityNod:
** In ''Champions'', Pauleen is a throwback to the first game's Digadig tribe. [[spoiler:You also get to fight Rosie in the post-game.]] [[spoiler:Duna, Raptin, and Dynal]] also make appearances in some bonus content.
** In ''Frontier'', the Vivosaur Island and Caliosteo Fossil Parks from the first two games get mentioned occasionally. Characters from ''Champions'' (or at least people with the same names) can show up in the in-game tournaments; one such team is Joanie, Pooch, and Tonzilla and another is Todd, Rupert, and Pauline.
* ConvectionSchmonvection: Mt. Lavaflow in the first game, and Mt. Krakanak in the second.
* CowardlyLion: Todd in ''Champions''.
* CrooksAreBetterArmed: Wanted vivosaur thief Blambeau carries around a shotgun. The [[PoliceAreUseless unarmed and largely ineffective police force]] send [[KidHero Hunter]] after him. Thrice.
* DarkSkinnedRedhead: Nevada Montecarlo, who also likes to WhipItGood.
* {{Deconstruction}}: Rosie can be seen as a deconstruction of TheLoad[=/=]DamselInDistress. She is those things, but realizes it, and is sorry for the times when you have to save her. After one instance she even asks if you hate her.
* DemBones: The [=BareBones=] Brigade's boneysaurs in ''Champions''.
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: Averted. When the bad guy pulls out an {{Olympus Mon|s}}, you need to get your own before you can properly challenge him. (Unfortunately, you can't keep it - see NoPlansNoPrototypeNoBackup below)
** However, it's later played straight with [[spoiler:Guhnash--apparently, all you have to do is destroy his brains. Easy-peasy.]]
** In ''Champions'' [[spoiler:The FinalBoss, Zongazonga, is pretty much exactly this. A body-snatching skull that turns into a literally on fire zombie T-Rex with giant, bloody skeleton arms coming out of it? Just send some kid with his pet dinosaurs to beat it up.]]
* DinosaursAreDragons: The Fire-type Vivosaurs breathe fire, but remember - they're no longer Dinosaurs, they're ''[[CallARabbitASmeerp Vivosaurs]]''.
** In ''Champions'', the Super Revive function in the sequel plays this to the hilt, essentially morphing your Vivosaurs from dinosaur-like creatures into more draconic monsters. Also, [[spoiler:the BigBad Zongazonga literally refers to the dinosaurs as dragons in his magic chant in the penultimate battle.]]
* [[AnimalMotif Dinosaur Motif]]: In ''Champions,'' the male PC has a T-Rex motif, while the female PC has a triceratops motif.
* DiscOneFinalBoss: Frigisaur, and the leader of the BB Bandits with him.
* DiscOneFinalDungeon: Boy, isn't Mt. Lavaflow climactic! The lava! The HeelFaceTurn! The impending epic battle between the opposing forces of Frigisaur and Ignosaur! ...Wait, whaddiya ''mean'' half the plot threads still haven't been followed up on?
* DiscOneNuke: The Spinax you're given at the beginning of the first game is strong enough to last you until endgame.
** In ''Champions'' the starters are powerful enough to last you the entire game, particularly Dimetro.
** The 'Donation Point' dinosaurs also count, particularly Compso in the first game. There's nothing to stop you from grinding all the way to him the moment you get access to your first dig-site, and his support-effects will make you basically unstoppable for the rest of the game. To a lesser degree, Stego - being the cheapest of the DP-dinosaurs, you can, again, fairly easily get all 4 parts of him, in [[RareRandomDrop 'red' quality]], for an instantly high-level 'Tank' who can solo practically anything up to late-mid-game if needs be.
** Giga Raja in Champions, which is created by evolving Raja (available in the first area) with a gold fossil (can be found early with some dedication). Giga Raja's already powerful attacks can be bolstered by his ability to Charge-Up for a turn, causing him to hit like a meteor and deal damage exceeding the highest possible Life Points for anything in the game!
* DoWellButNotPerfect: In ''Champions,'' there's a man who wants your help making hard-boiled eggs in the hot springs. They need to be in there for 10 seconds ''exactly,'' and hardly a millisecond longer. However, boiling the eggs for ''9.9 seconds exactly'' is the only way to get the [[spoiler: elemental chick]] fossils. Better bring a stopwatch. Or learn how to count to 7-1.
* DownloadableContent:
** The original game briefly featured four of the five Mysterious Egg fossils available for download on the Nintendo Channel, but they were taken down eventually. (They're still available in-game, though; it just takes longer.)
** ''Champions'' features [[OlympusMons Frigisaur and Ignosaur]] from the first game, along with sidequests from a... ''strange'' character named Ryne, and downloadable fights with [[spoiler: Duna, Raptin, and Dynal.]]
** ''Frontier'' distributed its bonus content through AR cards rather than actual downloads; including some Bone Buggys, versions of Yutie in all four elements, the villains' dark vivosaurs, and some ''actual'' dinosaurs.
* DudeWheresMyRespect: Averted. The [=NPC=]s' dialogue changes to praise you as you progress through the story and ranks.
* {{Eagleland}}: The Fossil Park America in ''Frontier''. The whole place is lit up like Las Vegas, the Warden in charge is TotallyRadical and [[AmericansAreCowboys dresses like a cowboy]], and the first dig site is in a southwest canyon. To its' credit, the Starry Falls dig site is a South American jungle instead of being a US stereotype. Fossil Parks Asia and Europe aren't all that much better when it comes to cultural stereotypes.
* ElementalPowers: It turns out that the cloning process gives these to animals as a [[CursedWithAwesome side-effect]].
** BlowYouAway
** DishingOutDirt
** MakingASplash
** PlayingWithFire
** NonElemental
** InfinityPlusOneElement: "Legendary" in the first two games, though in practice these vivosaurs are treated as Neutral; they just have better stats. The first game has [[spoiler:Frigisaur, Ignosaur, and all the parts of Guhnash]] and ''Champions'' has [[spoiler:Zombie Tricera, Zombie Ptera, Zombie Rex, Zombie Plesio, and Zongazonga; plust the return of Frigi and Igno]]. ''Frontier'' drops the designation.
* ElementalRockPaperScissors: Fire beats Air, which beats Earth, which beats Water, which beats Fire. Neutral has no advantages or disadvantages.
* ElvisImpersonator: Rockin' Billy from ''Champions.'' Did you catch the PunnyName?
* EverythingsBetterWithDinosaurs: Duh!
* [[EverythingsBetterWithPrincesses Everything's Better With Princessaurs]]: Maia (Maiasaurus) is a pink dinosaur with a feminine face and a princess-crown. She's also a support-skill powerhouse, the only one in the game to have both healing and anti-status-ailment skills.
* EvolutionaryLevels: [[spoiler:The Dinaurians have a devolution beam. It turns humans into "triconodonta", a ratlike mammal ancestor.]]
** The three "Transformation-Class" Vivosaurs also transform into later descendants of theirs: Guan turns into T-Rex, and Proto turns into Tricera. Aoptryx is somewhat more confusing--it can turn into ''any'' neutral-type Vivosaur. Even those that technically came before it. And even those it ''could not possibly be related to'' (Apato isn't even a ''theropod!'').
** In ''Champions'', some vivosaurs can "Super Evolve" into stronger forms.
* {{Expy}}: Pauleen in ''Champions'' has a lot in common with Rosie from the first game. In addition to being your designated female hanger-on and being surprisingly powerful for such a young age, both have bright pink TwinTails... and the same (accidental, in Rosie's case) VerbalTic.
* FeatheredFiend: Aopteryx. It can semi-reliably steal FP with Thieving Talons, recover LP with Life Drain and as mentioned above, transform into any Neutral vivosaur. [[JokeCharacter Unfortunately, it needs significant support to dish out and/or take damage...]]
* FetchQuest: AND HOW. The first game is loaded with these. Thankfully, most of them go by quickly enough to keep the story rolling.
* FireWaterJuxtaposition: Frigisaur and Ignosaur in the first game represent the Fire/Ice version.
* FlyingSeafoodSpecial: And [[WaterIsAir inverted]] when fighting in [[UnderTheSea Bottomsup Bay]].
* FossilRevival: ...It's the backbone of the series.
* GeniusSweetTooth: Dr. Diggins has a weakness for Dino Cakes.
* GenreSavvy: The final boss of ''Fossil Fighters Champions'':
-->''"Yes, well, let's not waste any more time with empty threats or the revealing of plans, mmm?"''
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Professor Scatterly in the second game manages to slip a [[DidNotDoTheBloodyResearch "Sod it"]] past the radar. Similarly, the game goes to absolutely ''zero'' lengths to disguise the fact that Pauleen has a [[HoYay girl crush]] on the female protagonist. She grabs the female PC's hands, stares deeply into her eyes, and then admits she has no idea why she's blushing.
* GlobalCurrencyException: Redundant fossils are donated to the museum, which gives you donation points based on how good they are. These points are the only currency the cleaning station store accepts. Averted in ''Frontier'', where you just get cash for extra fossils.
* {{Gonk}}: Baron von Blackraven, especially compared to his two PrettyBoy associates.
* GoodAllAlong: [[spoiler:Don Boneyard and the [=BareBones=] Brigade, trying to stop the Caliosteo Cup in order to stop Zongazonga's scheme. Well, the Brigade didn't know Don Boneyard was a good guy, but they don't have a problem with it when they find out.]]
* GottaCatchEmAll
* GreenHillZone: Greenhorn Plains in the first game, Treasure Lake in ''Champions'', and Paradise Beach in ''Frontier''.
* HarmlessFreezing: Frigisaur freezes you and Rosie completely after your first fight with it. But you're still OK.
* HarmlessVillain: The Barebones Brigade aren't exactly what you'd call menacing at first. Their eeeeevil plans involve such plots as "Pampering girls so they forget to participate in a tournament," and "Fill the hot springs up with powdered gelatin so people get stuck and can't participate."
** NotSoHarmlessVillain: [[spoiler: Their fourth plan, the one Don comes up with, is to destroy the ''entire Caliosteo island system''. Egads.]]
** [[spoiler: It's later {{justified|Trope}} when you learn that Don Boneyard is, in fact, the real Joe Wildwest in disguise. He didn't want to hurt anybody. When he [=OKed=] the third plan, things were getting ''extremely'' desperate, and it went slowly enough to give the people plenty of time to evacuate.]]
* HeelFaceTurn: [[spoiler: The BB Bandits - well, the TerribleTrio team, anyway; the {{Mooks}} don't seem to turn.]]
** [[spoiler: The entire [=BareBones=] Brigade.]]
* HelloInsertNameHere: All games actually allow you to change your main character's name at any time! The first game doesn't allow you to name your {{Mon}}s, strangely, though this was changed in the second.
* HopelessBossFight: [[spoiler: Round one against Frigisaurus.]]
* HotSpringsEpisode: In the second game, there's a hot spring-themed dig site called Hot Spring Heights. Not surprisingly, most of the plot in that area revolves around the hot springs.
* HumansAreSpecial [[spoiler: Not only do they have the sci-fi standard "pluck," but the dinaurians are impressed by their capacity for both compassion and forgiveness.]]
* HypnotizeThePrincess: Comes into play late in Champions. [[spoiler: It's Todd.]]
* InconsistentDub: ''Frontier'' changes a couple names from previous games. The coin-like items vivosaurs are stored in were "Dino Medals" but are now "Dino Gears", and Becklespinax's vivosaur name goes from "Spinax" to "Beckles" - of course, the first two games identified it as an Altispinax, and its Japanese name was "Altis", which would explain the change.
* InfinityPlusOneSword: T-Rex in the first game, natch. Also, [[KillerRabbit Compso, who debuffs the enemy's attack power by 90%]]. Even moreso are [[spoiler:Duna, Dynal, and Raptin]], with their ridiculous support effects, and crazy abilities.
* InterspeciesRomance: [[spoiler:Before the final battle with Guhnash, you can choose to bring either Rosie or Duna with you. Choosing Duna leads to this. And considering that little mishap with the devolution ray, Rosie technically counts for this too.]]
* ItemGet: Every last fossil is one of these in the first two games. The hero bends over, picks up the rock, faces the camera and thrusts it above his/her head triumphantly. The fanfare plays, and a blurb appears stating the nature of the rock found. It's a thing of beauty.
* JokeCharacter: In the first game, Anato. Its expression can only be described as "derpy," and even the ''game'' goes out of its way to point out how stupid it looks. It's a vivosaur who tries to sell itself based ''solely on'' the fact that it looks ridiculous. From a gameplay perspective, it also tries to lay claim to having a 100% effective [[StandardStatusEffects Confusion skill]], but said skill also does no damage and costs ''240 FP.'' Similar skills on other vivosaurs not only do damage, they also cost ''over 100 FP less.''
** LethalJokeCharacter in ''Champions '' It gets an [[TookALevelInBadass upgrade]] to gold confusion which means that the vivosaur inflicted has a chance of attacking itself or any of its allies. In addition its super evolver form Papygon, is widely accepted as one of the best in the game.[[note]]However, it's worth nothing that Papygon's PaletteSwap brother Teffla is much more the fan favorite of the two, and can deal heavier direct damage.[[/note]]
* JustifiedTrope: The game goes out of their way to emphasize that Dinosaurs didn't really have superpowers, and a great deal of the Vivosaurs aren't even really revived from Dinosaurs, per se, but are rather other forms of prehistoric life.
** Driven home in ''Frontier'', where [[spoiler:you travel back in time and encounter ''real'' dinosaurs. Unlike vivosaurs, dinosaurs are all Neutral-type, [[RealIsBrown have brown skin]], and are identified by their full names (like "Triceratops" instead of "Tricera")]].
* KatanasAreJustBetter: Mihu, a ceratopsian found in Japan, has ''katanas for horns.''
* KidHero: The main characters.
* KingIncognito: During ''Champions'', you're tasked with finding the Princess of Nomadistan, who has quietly entered the tournament; and are shown a picture of a girl and her dog that you ran into earlier. [[spoiler:The Princess turns out to be ''the dog''; the girl's her retainer. Both the fact that this would have been good to know earlier and the absurdity of [[CaligulasHorse appointing dogs as royalty]] is lampshaded.]]
* LampshadeHanging: The {{Combat Commentator}}s sometimes do this.
-->'''P.A. Leon''': I was wondering, why do we talk through every fight?
-->'''Slate Johnson''': I'm wondering how we can ''see'' every fight happening!
-->'''P.A. Leon''': Excellent point, Slate.
* LargeHamAnnouncer: All the announcers, but special mention must be given to Trip Cera. A couple choice quotes:
-->Not as excited as me! BOOYAH, GRANDMA!

-->'''Trip:''' Just like my wife with a credit card! Zing!\\
'''Ty:''' You're not married, Trip.\\
'''Trip:''' I'M SO LONELY!

-->There is a literal river of sweat running over my laptop! Seriously, I may electrocute myself before the day is over!
* LastLousyPoint: The five elemental [[spoiler:baby birds]] in the first game, who can only be obtained by getting every other vivosaur in the game and then ''maxing their levels.'' Yikes! They used to be downloadable from the Nintendo Channel on the Wii, but have since disappeared, as the aforementioned channel is no longer supported.
** More generally, you may find yourself gritting your teeth over the last lousy point of every single fossil you can clean. Properly-cleaned fossils are worth a ton of experience points, way more than you can reasonably give any specific vivosaur through combat. It's not ''mandatory'' to get everything perfect, but for perfectionists...
* LeakedExperience: Three vivosaurs participate in each fight, but all five that you're carrying (including defeated ones) get the experience. Averted in ''Frontier'', where all vivosaurs are available to use at all times but only the one used in battle gets experience.
* LizardFolk: In the second half of the game [[spoiler:a race of dromaeosauridae that evolved into hyper intelligent humanoids become the main antagonists after the BB Bandits are defeated. They want to KillAllHumans, naturally.]]
* [[GratuitousForeignLanguage Gratuitous Foreign]] {{Malaproper}}: Nick Nack does this. Airy cat oh! Donkey shine!
* MaskedLuchador: There seems to be a thriving masked-battler community, since each game involves some:
** Saurhead in the first game, who wears [[RefugeInAudacity no less than]] ''[[RefugeInAudacity thirty]]'' full-head dinosaur masks at any given time. [[TheUnreveal Can't risk]] [[DramaticUnmask being unmasked]], after all.
** Pauleen from ''Champions'' also wears a mask. [[spoiler: She wears it because it's shy, and it helps her feel more confident--but the mask is enchanted to bestow confidence, and ''evil,'' so it takes over the wearer's body in a rather literal case of BecomingTheMask.]]
** In ''Frontier'', it's Dino Gigante. You have to find his old rival, the Flying Smile Kid, and draw him out of retirement to try and win his belt in order to get the piece of MacGuffin on it.
* MetalDetectorPuzzle: This is your entire means of finding {{Mons}}--you have sonar and need to search the ground for stuff.
* MisterMuffykins: Joannie and Madame Pooch in ''Champions''. [[spoiler:Joannie's pampering is justified as Madame Pooch is legitimately royalty as "Princess Pooch"; see KingIncognito above.]]
* {{Mon}}: It's a dinosaur-collecting and battling game.
* MythologyGag: Many visual details of the Vivosaurs are based on facts about their dinos:
** Some are [[PunnyName name puns]] (Krona is covered in clock-like Roman numerals, and Coatlus was made to look like its namesake, Quetzalcoatl.)
** Others are based on the location of their discovery (U-Raptor (''Utahraptor'') has feathers that look like a Native American headdress, Carchar has Egyptian details, Chinese Shanshan is designed to look like a ChineseGirl crossed with an Asian dragon.)
*** The fact that Breme (''Bradycneme draculae'') is vampiric is both a name and location reference, as it was discovered in Transylvania and and consequently named after {{Dracula}}.
** And more have their own fun facts (M-Raptor was exceptionally bird-like and so resembles a parrot; Megalo was one of the first discoveries ever, so according to the graphic designer "[[http://www.fossilfighters.com/html/making-of/5/ I deliberately used the design of a dinosaur as it was conceived by people long ago.]]")
* {{Nerf}}: Support effects were nerfed quite heavily in ''Champions.'' In the first game, vivosaurs had their full support effects regardless of their level, making things like [[GameBreaker Compso]] incredibly dangerous. In the sequel, support effects grow when your levels do... meaning the game gives you a Compso in the ''very beginning of the game,'' and feels no remorse.
** But there's also an inversion, as some game mechanics got stronger in the transition from the original game to ''Champions''. In the original game, only the vivosaur in the Attack Zone could have a negative status effect put on them, and switching zones got rid of status effects. This made attacks whose only purpose was to cause a status effect somewhat weak, but this hurt poison attacks especially--you would need to use a chain of either knockback or [[StandardStatusEffect excite]] skills to get a poison attack to work, and the extra damage frequently wasn't that spectacular. In the sequel, however, all zones can have status effects and rotating doesn't get rid of them, meaning the extra damage from poison is more likely to stick around.
** A similar inversion applies to counterattacks. In the first game, counterattacks only had a 40% chance of working, making them a rather weak and luck-based strategy. In the sequel, counterattacks were upped to a 70% success rate, making them far more dangerous.
* NinjaPirateZombieRobot: The Dinomatons are robot dinosaurs, and the aforementioned Breme is a vampire dinosaur.
** And the sequel brings us skeleton [[spoiler:and zombie]] dinosaurs.
* NoPlansNoPrototypeNoBackup: A rare living example in [[OlympusMons Frigi(saur) and Igno(saur)]]. As soon as you defeat the former, the latter vanishes as well due to them cancelling each other's powers out. Still, it removes a god-like power from your party to prevent a Game Breaker. [[spoiler:Until you can win them from post-game {{Bonus Boss}}es, anyway.]]
* NothingIsScarier: When [[spoiler: the BB Bandits take over Vivosaur Island]], no music plays even in friendly areas.
* NotQuiteBackToNormal: Poor Rosie. The other girl's ending shows she hasn't fully thrown off the effects of the Digadig charm ''or'' the [[spoiler: deevolution ray]].
* OddNameOut: Three of Holt's V-Raptors in the mini-manga are Odin, Thor, and Steve.
* OlympusMons: Frigisaur and Ignosaur.
* OneWingedAngel: [[spoiler:The main villains of both ''Champions'' and ''Frontier'' turn themselves into monstrous dino-beasts for the final battle.]]
* OverlyLongName: Avoided. Many dinos have these, but their Vivosaur counterparts have them cut short.
* {{Panspermia}}: Subverted. [[spoiler: The Dinaurians seeded the planet with life, but it was Earth's own species that survived instead.]]
* PeninsulaOfPowerLeveling: There's a bonus boss post-game that most people have trouble with. However, with the right team (ex. Seismo, Hoplo, and Compso) you can consistently defeat said bonus boss over and over again in about 6 turns each time by abusing a team skill and how long-range attacks work, making leveling up all your vivosaurs to rank 12 easy.
** In the second game, there's the three Barebones Brigade officials. They use teams made up entirely of Boneysaurs; although Boneys have powerful support effects, they're also extreme {{Glass Cannon}}s, meaning vivosaurs several levels lower of them can take them out with some decent planning. They grant a full 30 points (in a game where level-ups come every 50 points) on defeat, making them great for grinding.
* PlanetEater: [[spoiler:Guhnash.]]
* PlayableEpilogue: A whole crop of stuff opens up after you beat the game. UnusableEnemyEquipment becomes [[InfinityPlusOneSword usable]], new areas open up, everyone becomes a BonusBoss, you get ''both'' the OlympusMons...
* PhlebotinumKilledTheDinosaurs: [[spoiler:Inverted; Dinosaurs were introduced on Earth by the Dinaurians.]]
* PopQuiz: The second go through the Secret Tunnels has you correctly answering dinosaur trivia to advance in the maze.
** In ''Champions'' there's a roaming quiz show sidequest run by Tess Score.
* PowerTrio: Hunter, Rosie, and Holt become one of these in the mini-manga. In ''Champions'', it's the player, Todd, and Pauleen; with Rupert as SixthRanger.
* PowerupLetdown: Getting the upgrade for Dark Fossils lets you find red fossils, which you could already find anyway, jewels, which you could find anyway, and dino droppings, which you ''couldn't''. Also, dark fossils have an outer shell that can only be broken with a hammer. If there's a speck of outer shell covering that perfect red fossil, expect to lose some points smashing it.
** Yes, but you don't get challenged for finding Dark Fossils in the original. Meaning you don't have to fight tooth-and-nail for every [[VendorTrash Emerald and Diamond]] that you dig up. In addition, the best jewels are available in Dark Fossils, meaning you can now get those all-important case, sonar, and cleaning tool upgrades without running around swinging a pickaxe like a maniac for hours on end. BoringButPractical.
* PunnyName / MeaningfulName: Where to start? We've got name changer Ty Tull, advice giver Tipper, Sam Inaro who teaches seminars... And these are just from the ''first'' game.
** Gets lampshaded:
--->'''Rosie:''' Oh, I can't believe I didn't make the connection before... Knickknacks... ''Nick Nack''. Ugh. Waa ha ha! To think we're out looking for knickknacks for a guy named Nick Nack... It's like some awful joke!
** NeverHeardThatOneBefore: Even the [=NPC=]s warn you that "We've heard all the jokes" about Bea Ginner (who teaches novices).
* PurelyAestheticGender: Your gender has no effect on the plot in ''Champions'' or ''Frontier''.
* QuintessentialBritishGentleman: In ''Champions,'' both Professor Scatterly and Rupert show signs of it. Rupert is more of a nascent one, though he certainly shows signs of Britishness.
* RandomlyDrops: Some fossils are ''much'' rarer than others, and you'll have to go back and forth between the main town and the area where they're found if you want to complete your fossil collection. Averted in ''Frontier'', where fossils for a specific vivosaur can be counted on to show up near each other and always in the same areas; plus they're identified on sight and you no longer need to go back to town to excavate them.
* TheReptilians: [[spoiler:The dinaurians in the original game.]]
* RibcageRidge: Treasure Lake in the second game has a gigantic skull of some variety, smack dab in the middle of the lake.
** Could also be a parody DesertSkull. Food for thought.
* RichIdiotWithNoDayJob: A great deal of the Fossil Fighters are implied to be this.
* RoadApples: Yes, you can dig up fossilized dino dung. Nick Nack and John Guano are the only ones who want it for whatever reason (the shop will ''accept'' it, but will pay next to nothing).
* RobotBuddy: [=KL-33N=], the cleaning robot. Rupert has a prototype digging robot called [=Di66-R=]. In ''Frontier'', the Bone Buggies have an onboard AI called [=VR-00M=] (whose picture looks like the robots from the prior games).
* RuleOfCool: Dinosaurs battling it out is cool enough, but the sequels give them even more powerful, awesome-looking forms.
* RunningGag: In ''Champions'', every time [[spoiler: someone's skull jumps into your pocket]], it is always described as "lumpy."
* SaveScumming: If you save before you talk to the cleaning robot, you can reload the save until he gives satisfactory results. No longer the case in ''Frontier'', where you do all the cleaning out in the field where you ''can't'' save.
* SchmuckBait: The Secret Tunnels of the Mole Brothers contain several treasure chests, but a nearby plaque warns you that "greed is its own setback." Opening them keeps you from advancing in the maze. It's later confirmed that opening these chests is why Lemo and O'Mel got separated in the first place.
* SetBonus: Putting three vivosaurs with something in common on the field can unlock a special attack for each.
* ShoutOut: One poor nameless NPC is tasked with standing guard over a warehouse, and nothing else. Keep talking to him, and he'll eventually reveal the "deep, philosophical" thoughts he's been having: "'''What is a man''''s life worth? Nothing but guarding '''a miserable pile of secrets?'''"
** The cleaning robots resemble Japanese emoticons.
** A cinematic from the sequel shows [[Film/JurassicPark a helicopter transporting new people to the island.]]
** In ''Champions'', one park staffer is trying to come up with new ideas:
-->Fast cars are exciting, right? Maybe we could [[Anime/YuGiOh5Ds have people battle while driving around a racetrack]]! [[TakeThat No, you're right. That's a dumb idea.]]
** Stella, Staff leader of Ribular Island informs the Hero(ine) that "[[SuperMarioBros Your dig site is on another island!]]" once they progress past Round 2 of the Cup. She then wonders why that sounds familiar.
** ''Champions'' also features a fisherman who became lost at sea. His name is [[Literature/RobinsonCrusoe Robinson,]] and he also talks to [[CastAway a ball, whom he calls his best friend]].
** When its programming goes haywire, Rupert's robot says things such as "[[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZelda I AM ERROR.]]" and "A WINNER IS YOU."
* ShownTheirWork: The information on the extinct animals, also see MythologyGag above.
* SignificantAnagram: The Mole Brothers' names are Lemo and O'Mel. Hm. I wonder what ''those'' [[SarcasmMode are anagrams of]]?
* SinisterSchnoz: Snivels, no question.
* SkullForAHead: Don Boneyard [[spoiler:and anyone else who became a victim of Zongazonga]].
* SlasherSmile: [[spoiler: Guhweep]] has one, but it's not immediately obvious until it [[spoiler: uses Tears of Dark Light... and turns upside down]].
* SlippySlideyIceWorld: The Glacier dig site from the first game, though it doesn't open up until the endgame.
** All of the Ilium Island digsites in ''Champions'' apply. Ilium isn't called "The island where warmth goes to die" for nothing!
* TheSlowPath:
** In the first game, [[spoiler:Dr. Diggins after he's sent back to the Jurassic. Thank goodness he manages to find the Stone Sleep device!]]
** Also seen in ''Frontier''. [[spoiler:While time-traveling, your vivosaur partner gets left behind in the late Cretaceous in order to make sure you get home safely. Eventually, you realize that a fossilized Dino Gear-like artifact you'd found earlier in the game really ''is'' your partner's Dino Gear.]]
* StanceSystem: Used in ''Frontier''. While previous games had tactical systems based on a vivosaur's placement on the field, ''Frontier'' instead focuses on how your vivosaur is standing: straight ahead, rearing up, ducking down, or turned around and baring its tail. Each vivosaur has a different set of strong and weak stances, and different attacks can change your or your opponents' stances (though a vivosaur's stance is always reset when it takes its turn).
* StatGrinding: A mild case in the first game; most stat gains are at levelups but vivosaurs also gain HP gradually between levels. ''Champions'' removes this.
* StockDinosaurs: But also includes any new prehistoric mammals and dinosaurs discovered during the creation of the game.
** The sequel appears to be continuing this, including many other prehistoric creatures from before and after the age of dinosaurs.
* StopHavingFunGuys: [[{{In-Universe}} Rupert]] in ''Champions''. After witnessing Todd take his loss to you in stride, he's baffled as to why Todd's not upset about losing. Though it turns out it's less arrogance that his way is the right one and more ignorance that there are other ways in the first place.
** Turns out it comes from his dad, who tried to drive the "have fun" mentality out of him and wanted him to bail out when facing even a 50% chance of failure. [[spoiler:This game being high on the idealistic end of the scale, this was just dad trying to protect Rupert from the pain of losing. [[ManipulativeBastard Or so he says...]]]]
* StrangelyEffectiveDisguise: [[spoiler: Somehow, the majority of the Dinaurians are fooled by yours and Dr. Diggins' masks.]]
** See also ''Champions'', where the hero(ine) receives a Ty Ranno mask for disguise purposes. No other mask keeps [=NPC=]s from immediately knowing who he/she is; how is this mask different?
* SummonBiggerFish: Calling up Ignosaur to fight Frigisaur.
* TakenForGranite: [[spoiler:The [[LizardFolk dinaurians]] have technology that can do this. The technology that un-stones them is also responsible for how you can revive dinosaurs in the first place.]]
* ATasteOfPower: Do you go straight to the confrontation with [[spoiler: Ignosaur]] in your party... or do you have some fun with the [[OlympusMons godlike beast]] beforehand?
* TerribleTrio: The BB Gang. Also counts as the GoldfishPoopGang for the first half of the game. In the sequel, it's the Barebones Brigade. ''Frontier'' has Baron von Blackraven and his gang.
* TheTetrisEffect: Expect to see fossils in various states of cleaning every time you close your eyes.
* TyrannosaurusRex: The game's mascot, and somewhat of the InfinityPlusOneSword. One NPC ensures the player near the end of the game that "all the hype you've ever heard about it is true!"
* TheUnintelligible: Rex of the BB Bandits.
** EloquentInMyNativeTongue: [[spoiler:His true speech patterns tend toward SesquipedalianLoquaciousness. Those kooky English bulldogs...]]
* UnknownItemIdentification: In the first two games, fossils had to be brought back to base and excavated before they could be identified. In ''Frontier'', fossils are "unknown" the first time they're excavated but the sonar will be able to ID them afterward.
* UnusableEnemyEquipment: Boy, the Dinatomatons sure are cool, aren't they? Who wouldn't want a [[VideoGame/RobotDinosaursThatShootBeamsWhenTheyRoar Robot Dinosaur That Shoots Beams When It Roars?]] Well, sorry, but ''you don't get none.'' And you'll have to keep your paws off [[spoiler:Duna, Dynal, and Raptin]] too... [[spoiler:until they all become available in the postgame, that is.]]
* VendorTrash: Digging up and cleaning gemstones is the only way to make money. The better the gem, the more money.
* VerbalTic: The Digadigs, including Pauleen in ''Champions''. Rosie [[GotMeDoingIt picks it up]] when she is mystically made part of the tribe, and she is very ''diga-''displeased.
* VideoGameCrueltyPotential: Roise asks "you probably hate me now, don't you?". You actually are ABLE to say "yes".
* XMeetsY: ''Franchise/JurassicPark'' meets {{Mon}}s. (''Magazine/NintendoPower'' said "meets ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}''", but "meets ''VideoGame/{{Spectrobes}}''" is much more apt.)
* WeCannotGoOnWithoutYou: In the first game's Master-rank Level-Up Battles, losing even one vivosaur makes you lose the whole fight.
* WellDoneSonGuy: Rupert's father is... difficult to please, shall we say.
* {{Whateversaurus}}: Along with the term "vivosaur" itself, this is used liberally for the various made-up species.
* WindIsGreen: Air-type Viviosaurs are revived from green fossils.
* WombLevel: The Bonehemoth in ''Champions.''
* WordSaladTitle: In ''Champions,'' all the songs in the sound test have silly and non-indicative names, like "Sleepy Robin," "Chocolate Soiree," or "Raspberry Bell."
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: Rosie's pink hair could be passed off as an [[LiteraryAgentHypothesis artistic rendtion]] of a strawberry blonde, but there's ''really'' no explaining why Dr. Diggins' hair is ''green.''
** Siamo actually has blue hair, despite being a dinosaur.
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