Legend of Legaia (Legaia Densetsu in Japan) is a two game RPG series commissioned by Sony Computer Entertainment. The first was developed by Contrail, with its follow-up, Legaia II: Duel Saga, moving to the PS2 and developed by Prokion. Despite similarities in gameplay and some character designs, they have next to nothing to do with each other.The first Legend of Legaia takes place in a world where a mysterious substance called "the Mist" has changed a good percentage of the population into monsters, caused by the symbiotic creatures (known as Seru) they were reliant upon fusing with them and hijacking their bodies, and caused civilization to completely collapse. The game centers around Vahn, a blue haired Kid Hero from a small village, one of the few areas of the world not shrouded in Mist thanks to a giant wall, and also with no Seru there. After a servant of the Mist attacks his village, he ends up merging with a Ra-Seru (A sapient Seru that can also absorb the essence of other Seru, and is also immune to the effects of Mist) named Meta that was hidden/resting within a dying tree that lay in the center of his village, known as a Genesis Tree. Upon being prayed to and infused with power, the tree grows again, banishing the Mist from the immediate area, and Vahn leaves his home to attempt to find others, in order to remove the Mist from the land. Eventually, he meets up with two other heroes - Noa, a feral girl raised by the Ra-Seru Terra, and Gala, a monk who eventually gains the service of the Ra-Seru Ozma.The second game is based in a completely different world, with nothing carrying over from the first game. It centers around Lang, one of the exceedingly rare "Mystics" that have the power to summon elemental spirits that they contain within themselves. In most places, Mystics are shunned due to their strange powers, and strange tattoos that mark their bodies. Lang's friends and family don't have this prejudice; on his first day of work, the Aqualith is stolen from the village, and he is warned to be careful in the outside world, searching for it in order to restore the village's water supply. Along the way, he winds up gathering a group of fellow Mystics to himself, and begins finding the way to save the world from Avalon, the man that stole Aqualith.Both games are fairly standard turn based RPGs, but with some twists. Both games have the "Tactical Arts System", which revolves around selecting not just to make an attack, but forming combinations of attacks for efficiency and maximum damage, using specific limbs and heights for attacks - turning it into a similar feel as to a fighting game. By chaining together specific attacks, a character can use Arts - by chaining Arts together, a player can find his characters doing impressive amounts of damage without resorting to magic. This is made more complex in the sequel by the multiple types of Arts one has - Basic Arts build Art Points, allowing the character to use more powerful Super Arts, Hyper Arts, Variable Arts, and Mystic Arts. (In the original, Art Points were always consumed by any form of Art, and replenished by a small amount at the end of each turn, by taking damage, and by using the Spirit command, which also granted a significant extension to the combo bar, plus a temporary guard status - Spirit plus Miracle Art spam was ultimately the endgame tactic, with one party member relegated to healing.)
Legend of Legaia shows examples of:
After the End: The concept of the first game; the bad guys have already won when the game begins.
And Now for Someone Completely Different: After a couple hours of gameplay as Vahn... hey, where did he go, and who's this Noa person? Fortunately, it's only a short while before the two meet, and then you're controlling the party of both of them.
An Economy Is You: Lampshaded by one woman in Drake Castle Town, who remarks that the shops are eschewing sales of meat and vegetables in favor of selling "weapons for killing things".
Awesome Yet Practical: Miracle Arts. Their damage output is extremely high, and unlike magic, does not drain MP. Miracle Art spam is one of the best ways to defeat late-game bosses
BFS: The Astral Sword. It is a massive weapon and has attack power second only to Vahn's ultimate weapon. Sadly, it's also a case of Awesome, but Impractical, as using it locks Vahn out of his MiracleArt, which is far more powerful than normal attacks while using the Astral Sword. Using a Miracle Art makes you useless for a few turns, but the damage is still superior to Boring, but Practical setups with the Astral Sword.
Boss Rush: The Delilas siblings, and then Koru- three one-on-one fights, and then a final timed fight, which if you don't win in five turns, you die, and the save point's at the beginning of the dungeon. Time to level up. Thankfully, you can save before the timed fight as the timer doesn't start until you approach it.
A lesser example in Rogue's Tower, where you must fight two upgraded forms each of Caruban and Berserker before then fighting the head Rogue.
But Thou Must: Early on in the first game, Meta asks Vahn to join with him. If you say no, he apologizes for forcing you but explains that you have no choice but to agree, and presents you with the choice again.
Demonic Possession: Cort, being a Mad Scientist, managed to uncover a piece of Rogue ten years ago, and promptly got possessed by it. Everything went downhill from there.
Disc One Final Dungeon: At least three times: Zeto's Dungeon, Zora's Floating Castle, and Jette's Absolute Fortress. Dohati's Castle is a partial example, but by this point, it is clear that you still have to go to at least one more region.
Does This Remind You of Anything?: The background conflict between Rogue and the other Ra-Seru should ping players for similarities to the fall of Lucifer for anyone versed in the Christian version of that story.
Doomed Hometown: Vahn's hometown, Rim Elm, is hit by the Mist at the start of the game. Later on, it's eaten by a gigantic Seru. Noa's hometown suffered a similar fate 10 years prior.
Dungeon Town: Every town except Underground Octam goes through this at some point.
An Economy Is You: Lampshaded - After you free Drake Castle from the Mist, one woman complains that the shops are no longer selling meat and vegetables, instead selling weapons and armor for the party.
Evil Prince: Cort, although his intentions seem to have been good enough to start with.
Evolving Attack: Specifically, as you use your 'spells' (read: summon Seru to your aid), they (frustratingly slowly) level up, learning debuffs, damage boosts, buffs, or status-healing additional effects.
Also, as your Ra-Seru level up, they grow and change (foreshadowed in the opening cutscene, but Never Trust a Trailer is in full force), dealing more damage with added effects (such as hitting multiple times) when you use the Ra-Seru command in an attack string.
Fight In The Nude: Averted - each weapon and piece of armor is shown on the characters during battle, although not during cutscenes or on the map. Many of the different variations were Palette Swaps of each other, but given when the game was produced, it's still quite impressive. Of course, the characters aren't actually shown fighting in the nude- if you take off all of their armor, they'll just be wearing their default outfits.
First Person Snapshooter: A "camera stone" can be purchased at the hot springs resort in the first game. You can take pictures in several different locations, and if you won Noa a swimsuit, she's wearing it in the photographs.
Fog of Doom: The Mist, duh. Slightly subverted in that the Mist itself has no effect on humans. Instead, it turns the Seru that people use into insane, evil monsters that will either take control of your body and turn you into a mindless zombie, or simply kill you.
Gosh Hornet: The hive of killer bees at the start of the game; it's not until much later that you can actually kill them. A lot of players died to these things before the story even started.
And then your little sister steals your loot (the unique "Honey" item that increases the growth of a character's stats) if you talk to her after winning it! Fortunately, if this happens, you can fight the bees again to replace it.
Berserker, one of the hardest bosses of the game, will die in a single usage of a leveled-up instant-death spell. He is the only boss susceptible to this attack.
The Miracle Arts as well. In order to use one, you must put in nine commands of "up", "down", "left", and "right" in an order specific to each character. The game does not give any hints as to what the proper order is, or even that they exist. By extension, the final Ra-Seru evolutions as well, which require each character to have learned his/her Miracle Art.
Super Arts in Legaia I. They are 7-9 commands long, and they're quite powerful, but the game only gives vague hints to their existence (and not their sequence). If you discover one, it is not saved in your Arts list. Better get out the pen and paper if you want to use it again. Oh, and each character has five.
Hurricane Kick: Noa's third Hyper Art is called this. It's closer to a flurry of kicks than the better known examples from fighting games.
Incredibly Durable Enemies: Many enemies require borderline all-out tactics to defeat well after they have surpassed their capacity to give you significant EXP.
Karma Houdini: Given the kind of game it is and that his sister has nothing resembling a family member left alive at this point, one character's Raise Him Right This Time is somewhat reasonable (see below), but in a cast of equally or more sympathetic deaths, he's the only one who gets one.
Lampshaded hilariously in Sol Tower, where you're turned away by children running an item shop if you don't have enough money. They remark on how someone so young couldn't possibly pay; one of Vahn's possible responses is "I'm not a kid! I'm 14 years old!"
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Gala starts out this way, constantly insulting Vahn and Noa at first, demeaning their violent ways and their use of Seru, and quite openly displaying his disdain at being forced to help them. Eventually, he lightens up and becomes friendlier with the rest of your team, though he still occasionally argues with Noa.
Let Them Die Happy: Averted. Instead of just letting Zora die of her injuries or the Floating Castle's collapse, Songi informs her that Cort didn't love her, her entire operation was a trap for the heroes and she didn't know it, and that if she hadn't succeeded in killing them, the plan involved her death. Then he kills her. Ouch.
Level Grinding: In multiple flavors, should you choose - use of spells would eventually level them up into better versions.
Lost Forever: There's a path that leads to the first mist generator that takes you out of the overworld if you go there before reviving all the genesis trees and you're told the mist is too thick. It contains a treasure chest. But if you happened to not try that path until later, you're out of luck. You walk right over it and stay in overworld mode.
Mad Love: Zora is in love with Cort, and part of her motivation for becoming his follower in the first place was that Love Makes You Evil. She believes that he loves her, too - until Songi shows up and tells her the truth once she's Outlived Her Usefulness.
Magikarp Power: Gala is The Load when he joins. When he catches up, he has a great damage output, the best healer of the team, and the best Seru user on the team. To put it simply, he has the most potential out of the three characters, but it take a long time to reach those potential..
Meaningful Name: Possibly Noa, who, according to the game's review at RPGamer.com, was supposed to be named "Noah", and has a Miracle Art known as "Noa's Arc". If this is true, it's likely that this was to avoid a Gender Blender Name.
Multiple Endings: Sort of. The main plot is linear, but at the very end, the player can choose what Vahn does after the story's over.
Nintendo Hard: The first game is not someplace to forget level grinding and battle tactics.
No Escape But Down: During the escape from the final Mist Generator's self-destruction, if you don't just teleport out.
Outside The Box Tactic: It's very easy to defeat the Berserker by using the Nighto spell. The Berserker is the only boss vulnerable to the spell, which causes confusion and has a chance of inflicting instant death.
Second Hour Superpower: None of your characters starts with their Ra-Seru when they first join your party. Once that character does join with their Ra-Seru, their ATK shoots up, and they get access to magic.
In Duel Saga, Lang doesn't get the ability to use his Origin, Galea, until nearly a quarter of the way through the game.
Sole Entertainment Option: The only place with real entertainment is Sol, the town which was built on a tower that was partially above the Mist. There were several different activities people could do... but there isn't much in the way of recreation anywhere else.
Partially justified, in the Sol is also the only town that's unaffected by the Mist (the upper floors at least), while everyone else had to struggle to survive as best they could. In fact, the abundance of entertainment in Sol has turned most of the residents into Apathetic Citizens, completely unconcerned with the Mist, yet also bored out of their minds.
Summon Magic: Spells involve summoning the various Seru you have fought throughout your adventure.
Third-Person Person: Noa always talks like this in the Japanese version of the game. She doesn't in the English script, though.
Timed Mission: You have six minutes to escape from the Floating Castle before it hits the ground and gives you a Game Over.
Time Limit Boss: The fight against Koru. You have four turns to defeat him, and then... BOOM! Koru explodes, vaporizing half the region, dealing 9999 damage to each of your characters, and instantly giving you a Game Over.
Subverted in Duel Saga with the fight against the Mighty Balken. The fight is played up to be a timed fight against the drawbridge closing. When you defeat Balken, he collapses and the shock of his fall re-opens the drawbridge and allows for your escape.
Fantasy Character Classes: Semi-averted. All of the characters have access to the same types of skills, but their stat builds naturally lend better to certain styles of play.
Cute Bruiser, Glass Cannon - Noa. She starts with a way larger combo gauge than most of your characters, starting off with the amazing Rushing Gale basic art (three hits after a four-hit string) that you can alternate indefinitely with Spirit and remain at maximum AP. She then upgrades to the even more powerful Tempest Break art (four hits after a five-hit string) by level three. Because of this, she's your powerhouse until about the midpoint of the game, when Vahn and Gala have caught up. Even then, she remains useful because of the utterly-silly amount of hits her Miracle Art causes, and her high speed means that she (almost) always go first, letting her heal when you otherwise wouldn't be able to. If you grind enough, she makes god use of the Infinite AP Gem because she delivers more hits and more damage than either Vahn or Gala. However, she lacks the defensive capabilities (both physical and magical) of a Lightning Bruiser, so many bosses can one-shot a normally levelled Noa easily.
Squishy Wizard - Notably averted, as the best magic-user in the game is Gala. The story makes it obvious that he has the best knowledge and discipline of the three.
The Load: Gala, before he acquires Ozma. Granted, he's level 1 when your party is around level 8, but training him up to par is tedious when the man can't even piece together basic Arts without Spirit due to his low agility giving him few art blocks.
Bacon Addiction: As you can find out for yourself, the colossal cakes that Marienne, the resident Fat Bastard of a woman eats on a regular basis (and which you can learn the receipe to and cook for yourself, much to the party's dismay) contain unhealthy amounts of bacon.
Betty and Veronica: Maya and Sharon. Coupled with how, depending on the choices you make in the game, you can make one or the other (or both) fall for you. Unfortunately, this doesn't affect the ending.
Cosmic Keystone: The three sacred stones - the Pyrolith, Aerolith, and Aqualith - that are needed to operate the Source Forge and the power of creation itself.
Crutch Character: Both Kazan and Sharon when they join, for different reasons. Kazan joins at level 25 at a point when Lang and Maya are barely over 10, and can systematically destroy every encounter you get into for about two dungeons, at which point the rest of the party, and the enemies, have caught up. Kazan never becomes useless, but he's never such a Game Breaker again, mostly because some of his arts are awkward to chain. Sharon joins at a high level herself, but not as comparatively high as Kazan. Her initial use comes from the speed at which she earns Art Blocks. If you play the game long enough for other characters to match her Art Blocks, she loses most of her niche, but she at least still have easily chain able arts.
Cute Mute: Maya for quite a bit of the game. She eventually does get her voice back
Graceful Loser: After being defeat by the party, Bubba admits his defeat, and goes into an impressive speech about how That Man Is Dead and that he'll wander the earth to find his own path. Then he hangs a lampshade on it when he inner monologues that his speech was probably sufficient to save some face and that he should skedaddle now.
Guide Dang It: You could keep randomly pressing combinations of three to six buttons until you stumble on a new Art by process of elimination. Or you could just look it up in a guide like everyone else does.
Minigame Zone: Phorchoon Casino. Lots of mini games, with all sorts of desirable prizes.
The name also doubles as Stealth Pun, considering it's just a weird way of spelling "fortune".
Noodle Incident: Lang's Power Tattoo is easily viewable, and Sharon explains where hers is, but Maya shyly refuses to reveal where hers is located. Nobody bothers to ask Kazan where his is, much to his lamentation.
The Obi-Wan: Kazan. Although he adventures with the party throughout the game, his role in the story is to provide advice and wisdom to the younger party members, especially Lang.
Avalon: I will destroy all life, leaving only me! I will be the world!
Panty Shot: Marienne's skirt is way too short, and you get a panty shot whenever the camera looks at her face-on. As she's apparently a little girl, seriously overweight and insane, this is concentrated Fan Disservice.
Pirate: Sharon. She and her crew are firmly of the "honorable rogue" variety, and have a set code of honor that they adhere to.
Porn Stash: Interestingly, an optional cutscene Lang can have is with Sharon finding his stash at his house. Kind of averted in that Sharon seems to find it cute and funny instead of getting angry.
Really 700 Years Old: Velna, she was alive at the time of the fall of Kabel, through the power of her Origin Vestra.
Relationship Values: Lang can make four different girls in the game fall for him (two of which are in the party): Maya, Sharon, Nancy, and Phanta (yes, the bumbling female partner of the game's Harmless Villain duo). How Lang finds out his progress in his relationships is by talking with the Fortune Teller about his love life. Unfortunately, this has no real effect on the ending of the game, though it does affect the in-game cutscenes and convos.
You Monster!: Bishop Doplin. After you defeat Elliot and Marienne for the final time, the party confronts Doplin in order to obtain the Pyrolith. After he learns that the duo is dead, he remarks that he never cared about them, and was just using them for their power. The party goes ballistic on hearing this, and call him out for it.
Maya: I used to think that there was no such thing as a truly evil person. but... I guess I was wrong.
Kazan: I've never met anyone as rotten to the core... This is not a man, he's garbage.