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Video Game: Ragnarok (Roguelike)
Ragnarok (also known as Valhalla) is a freeware Roguelike DOS game heavily based around Norse Mythology, and is notable for being one of the first Roguelikes to use graphical tiles rather than text-based graphics. Like NetHack, it has an item-heavy focus, though luck still plays an important role, especially early on in the game. How much luck comes into things will also depend partly on your playing style.

As with most Roguelikes, it has a very steep learning curve and many, many ways in which you can die.

There are six classes to choose from, which you can change every 10 levels:

  • Alchemist — A master potioneer, able to create magical brews to empower yourself with.
  • Blacksmith — A crafter able to make many kinds of weapons and equipment.
  • Conjurer — A wizard who uses spells to trick and defeat his enemies.
  • Sage — A scholar capable of writing all manner of magical scrolls.
  • Viking — A melee class and master of weaponry.
  • Woodsman — A ranged class that focuses on attacking with bows and tamed monsters.

The game can be downloaded here, though you may also need to download an MS-DOS emulator such as Dosbox to get it to run.

Not to be confused with Ragnarok Online, the Manhwa, or the eponymous final battle from Norse mythology.


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Ragnarok contains examples of:

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    Tropes A-C 
  • Acquired Poison Immunity: You can become immune to poison by eating certain monsters, albeit at the risk of death and other debuffs. It also applies to several other immunities as well, though there are other less dangerous methods of gaining resistances .
  • All There in the Manual: Averted. The manual contains some information on various items and monsters, but misses out a lot of information, and deliberately provides some inaccurate details.
  • All Your Powers Combined: The player character can gain almost every power, skill, and resistance in the game at the same time.
  • Amplifier Artifact: The amulet of might, which increases your strength by a full 15 points.
  • Anachronism Stew: Apparently the Norse had Katana-wielding swordsmen running around.
  • And I Must Scream: See Fate Worse than Death.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence:
    • You if you help the gods win the battle of Ragnarok.
    • You also do this literally whenever you use the power of dimension travel, as the Crossroads are stated to be located above the normal planes of existence.
  • Anyone Can Die: Including the gods. And especially you.
  • Anti-Magic: A silver mantle makes the player immune to most wands and ray attacks. A player can also gain this ability without requiring a silver mantle if they get lucky with a scroll of wonder, and can also become resistant to other magical attacks.
  • Artifact of Death: Several evil artifacts that can only be gained by being greedy of the wand of wishing. As with NetHack, wielding a dead cockatrice as a weapon comes fairly close to this.
  • Artificial Limbs: A magical arm that can be crafted for Tyr.
  • Auto-Revive: What happens after drinking the aptly named potion of second life, if you create one as a master alchemist. You can only make it once however.
  • Back from the Dead:
    • You need to bring Balder back from it as part of one of the quests.
    • You can bring an entire species back from the dead if you've genocided them and then read a scroll of extinction while confused.
  • Badass Bystander: Shopkeepers are very powerful on early levels and can effortlessly slay monsters that give you considerable trouble, the ones in the bazaar even more so. Which makes you wonder why they hang around in their shops all day waiting for you to turn up and buy something, rather than saving the world themselves.
  • Bag of Holding: Red bags, which allow you to store 127 items within. Thankfully items are weightless while inside the bag, and they're also protected from damage.
  • Bandit Mook:
    • Nymphs can repeatedly steal items from you, but you can recover them without penalty if you can track them down.
    • Despite the name, bandits only pick up items lying on the ground, rather than stealing from you.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Can possibly happen to anything that gets hit by a polymorph ray, including yourself. Averted if it transforms them into a powerful monster which instantly tears you to pieces instead.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Averted generally as using your fists is one of the weaker weapons in the game. Using gauntlets with a high bonus multiplier works much better, and if you can find crystal gloves it's one of the strongest weapons in the game.
  • Bazaar of the Bizarre: The bazaar, located deep underground and magically sealed off. If you can find some way to get there, you can usually find at least one of every item in the game, including powerful and unique items.
  • Bears Are Bad News: At least at the start of the game where they're a frequent cause of death for new characters.
  • The Beastmaster: The woodsman class can tame monsters. Anyone with the power of mind control can achieve a similar result.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: If you have sufficient luck, then with the exception of most unique items you can wish for powerful items with no ill effects. If you're excessively greedy however then you will get an evil facsimile, or a cursed item instead.
  • Big Bad: The evil gods, led by Surtr.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Yetis show up as one of the monsters you can face.
  • Big Good: The pantheon, led by Odin.
  • Blindfolded Vision: Not vision per se, and the game doesn't actually have a blindfold, but you can see monsters whilst blind with a certain skill, or if you're telepathic.
  • Blob Monster: Red ooze, which eats your weapon if you try attacking it. Then your gauntlets. Then you.
  • Blown Across the Room: Scyld can slam you into walls with his shockwave ability, potentially killing you if you're sufficiently low on health.
  • Body Horror: In addition to having eyes and limbs grown or ripped off, players can be turned into monsters such as a corpse through polymorphing. Then there's what gorms do to you...
  • Bolt of Divine Retribution: Possible if you act extremely immorally, but this is extremely hard to achieve unless you're deliberately going for it.
  • Bonus Boss: Vidur the frost giant lord.
  • Border Patrol: Jormungandr guards the ocean and will kill you in a single hit if you don't immediately escape from the area. He's also completely unkillable, even if you use a memory editor to cheat and take his health down to 1 HP.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Several, many of which are actually harder than most bosses.
  • Bottomless Bladder: While characters have to eat to stay alive, you never have to worry about any of the consequences of your constant gorging on food or chugging of potions. You also slowly recover from your wounds without needing to rest (though you can choose to skip turns in a safe area to let them regenerate without fear of taking further damage), and the only way to sleep in the game is to be hit by a wand of sleep, giving other monsters free attacks at your helpless form.
  • Breakable Weapons: All projectile weapons will break if you use them enough.
  • Breath Weapon: Dragons and basilisks are fond of this.
  • Cannibalism Super Power: Several abilities and resistances can be obtained by eating the corpses of dead monsters.
  • Cap: Mostly averted. Only luck and constitution have a hard cap of 100 and 1500 respectively. Most other values are limited only by how much memory the game uses to store them, though levelling up becomes progressively more difficult.
  • Cherry Tapping: Both the player and monsters can be killed in this way, if you weaken them enough and use certain weapons.
  • Chest Burster: Gorms.
  • Chest Monster: A variant. While treasure chests don't exist in the game, chameleons pretend to be items until you try and pick them up, with even a telepath being unable to detect them.
  • Clingy Macguffin: Cursed weapons and armour can weld themselves to you until destroyed, stolen, or you remove the curse with a scroll of dispel hex or by blessing them.
  • Clothes Make the Superman: Played with. While you can gain many abilities by wearing various amulets, armour, and rings, it's almost always possible to gain the effects without wearing anything (including the armouring), albeit harder.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The colour of monsters on the mini-map is a good indicator of certain characteristics.
  • Combat Pragmatist: You need to be one if you want to win. No one ever saved the world by playing fair.
  • Combinatorial Explosion: What can happen if you randomly mix potions. Rather bizarrely this can occur if you mix two of the same types of potion, leading to odd scenarios where adding two vials of water together can cause an explosion strong enough to kill you.
  • Continuing Is Painful: The potion of second life will kindly relocate you so that you avoid certain deaths twice such as drowning, but it won't stop an enemy from blasting you with the wand of death again, or ripping you apart.
  • Convection Shmonvection: Played straight with regular lava, but averted with fire giants which cause anything that gets near to burst into flames.
  • Cool Boat: Skidbladnir, which as in the myths folds up into the user's pocket. The developers lampshade this in their official guide with a "Not Making This Up" Disclaimer.
    "Skeptics please note: the writers of the game did not make this up. It is an actual mythological boat."
  • Crazy-Prepared: You, if you want to achieve victory.
  • Critical Existence Failure:
    • Fall in a pit with 1 HP and see where that gets you.
    • Vanishers cause you to quite literally fade from existence.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Several of the ways you can die are extremely painful. And unusual. From having your chest torn open by a parasitic species, being devoured by red ooze, ripped apart by a rockstorm, having the flesh torn off your body by a gale, having your heart pierced by a sapient plant, having your mind crushed by a telepathic species...

    Tropes D-F 
  • Damage Discrimination: Averted. Certain attacks will damage every being in an area, friend and enemy alike. Monsters can also be hit by projectile attacks aimed at you from other monsters. Wands and rays can hit multiple monsters in their paths.
  • Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Wielding a dead cockatrice when you're not petrification resistant certainly comes close. If your gauntlets are destroyed or stolen, or if you temporarily lose control of your character then it will end badly.
  • Deadly Gaze: The gaze of the cockatrice, basilisk, or sentinel will turn you to stone. A few others simply damage you instead.
  • Death by Gluttony: The game even lists this by name if you eat something that kills you. Usually something poisonous, though it can also be something that does elemental damage if you don't have a resistance to it.
  • Death by Falling Over: If you fall down a pit with low HP. Strangely averted when trying to use stairs while drunk.
  • Death by Materialism: You can drown if you carry too much weight around with you and try to swim. Also applies if you attempt to go for some treasure and get yourself killed, usually by triggering a hidden trap.
  • Death by Sex: Unlikely but potentially possible if a nymph seduces you and steals an item you needed to survive.
  • Dem Bones: Corpses.
  • Demon Lords and Archdevils: The various demon lords of Niflheim, who are some of the most dangerous enemies in the game.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: With a few in-game messages. Most apparent with drowning where the game helpfully tells you after drowning that you've died.
  • Depleted Phlebotinum Shells: Several monsters can only be hit by magical or blessed weapons. If you take a normal weapon and bless it, you're good to go.
  • Design It Yourself Equipment: If you get your hands on the wand of wishing then you can ask for almost any piece of gear in the game, providing you've got sufficiently high luck for the bonus multiplier you want.
  • Destroyable Items: Any item in the game can be destroyed including quest items, though some are protected against forms of damage. This also applies to critical parts of the map such as stairs.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Try picking up a dead cockatrice. You die. But if you're wearing gauntlets, you can! And if you wield the corpse as a weapon, it will turn anything else to stone!
  • Diagonal Speed Boost: As is standard for most Roguelikes.
  • Disability Immunity: Blind players are immune to the gaze of anssks, and deaf players cannot be stunned by enchantresses.
  • Disadvantageous Disintegration:
    • Turning enemies to stone is a powerful ability but prevents you from getting any loot. To offset this slightly, the resulting statue sells for a decent amount of gold, if you can carry it back to a shop.
    • Blasting enemies with the wand of annihilation also prevents you from getting any loot, and unlike petrification you don't even get a statue to sell.
  • Disc One Nuke: Potentially possible if you get extremely lucky and find powerful items on an early level.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Nymphs seduce players and steal items before teleporting away. Male characters can also be lulled into a trance by an enchantress' song unless they've been deafened or wear a silver mantle.
  • Do Not Drop Your Weapon: Averted, but only for you. Powerful monsters can disarm you by stealing your weapons, or mentally compel you to wield worthless ones.
  • Dragon Hoard: Dragons carry large amounts of treasure around with them, making them valuable targets if you can defeat them.
  • Drop the Hammer: War hammers are fairly effective weapons, and Mjollnir is one of the most powerful weapons in the game if you can obtain the strength needed to wield it.
  • Dungeon Bypass: Many ways, including digging through the ground, teleporting straight reading scrolls of travelling whilst confused, or dimension hopping.
  • Dungeon Shop: The bazaar is the biggest shop in the game (taking up an entire level), but getting to it requires getting lucky while dimension hopping, or finding a scroll of transport. Smaller shops can occasionally be found underground or on forest levels.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: The result of winning the game and saving the world. Just don't expect too much.
  • Easily Angered Shopkeeper: Granted, it's pretty understandable that they'll attack you if you try hurting them, but if you manage to steal a cursed item with a cost of a single gold piece, they'll hunt you to the death.
  • Eaten Alive: You, if you get eaten by red ooze. One of the demons in Niflheim will also rip your legs off and eat them.
  • Enemy Summoner: Summoners. Magicians can also summon other magical beings, and both come fairly close to being Mook Makers given the fairly low damage they put out.
  • Enthralling Siren: Enchantresses can lull male characters into a trance, allowing other nearby monsters to wail on you repeatedly.
  • Everything Fades: Bodies rot away after a while, but any items a monster had on them remain until picked up or destroyed.
  • Everything's Better with Samurai: Several items of Japanese origin show up including Katanas and Shuriken, which are some of the best weapons in the game. Averted with the closest thing the game has to a Samurai, swordsmen, which are very dangerous opponents.
  • Everything Trying to Kill You: Well, almost everything.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: Not literally for the most part unless you tame a wild dog, but friendly characters will attack invisible or nearby monsters that you might not be aware of.
  • Evil Is Deathly Cold: Literally. Nilfheim is freezing cold and instantly kills players who are not resistant to it. If you're unlucky, reading a scroll of pure evil will send you straight there.
  • Evil Weapon: The black sword. Don't wish for it!
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Several items. Hey, the wand of wishing grants you wishes. Shocking!
  • Explosive Breeder:
    • Breeders can turn any monster into these by constantly cloning them.
    • Several other monsters will multiply themselves if you don't kill them quickly.
  • Eye Beams: Several monsters shoot rays from their eyes. The player can potentially learn how to do this as well.
  • Eye Scream: Kalvins have a nasty habit of ripping out your eyes. Ouch.
  • Fake Difficulty: As with most Roguelikes, Ragnarok definitely has its fair share of this. More details can be found under the various entries elsewhere on the page.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: The game revolves mostly around Norse Mythology, but it also includes several other fantasy elements such as katanas or the Tolkienesque orcs.
  • Fast Tunnelling: Averted if using physical means like a pick axe, which takes several turns to dig through a barrier. Magical ways such as using a wand of tunnelling, or potion of phasing are instantaneous.
  • Fate Worse than Death: The result of wishing for the amulet of eternal life, which freezes you as a living statue, ending your game.
  • Fetch Quest: Most of the quests play this one straight. Freeing Balder is mostly inverted as you start with the required item, and the vast majority of the quest revolves around travelling to Niflheim.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: The viking and conjurer class play the first two fairly straight. There's no thief class as such, though the woodsman class probably comes closest with its emphasis on ranged combat.
  • Final Battle: You spend most of the game preparing for this, but your main role is to retrieve the gods' items so they can win it.
  • Final Death: You can play this one straight if you wish and it's in the spirit of the game, but it won't force you to by deleting saved games upon death.
  • Fingore: A possible consequence of polymorphing while wearing rings.
  • Fishing For Mooks: A useful tactic against more powerful monsters is to aggro a few at a given time, and/or force them to fight you in a choke point one-on-one.
  • Flunky Boss: Several of the demons in Niflheim fight by their minions and will spawn additional ones.

    Tropes G-L 
  • Gender Bender: One of the side-effect of polymorphing or encountering weird fumes.
  • Genocide Backfire: What can happen if you read a scroll of extinction while confused. Or if you decide to wipe out your own species if reading it normally.
  • Get Back Here Boss: Scyld is an interesting variant, as he teleports you away instead. Usually to one of the most dangerous locations in the game.
  • Grand Theft Me: A master sage can steal the body of a high level monster by reading a scroll of switch bodies.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: You can pick up any body and wield it as a weapon if so inclined, but wielding a dead cockatrice allows you to do insane damage by instantly petrifying most monsters.
  • Guide Dang It: Good luck beating the game without reading one. In particular, freeing Balder requires that you know how the appropriate ring works.
  • Hammerspace: While you can only carry a certain amount of items in your backback, no provision is made for volume, only weight, allowing you to carry around items that could not possibly fit, especially items that can stack to take up a single slot. Taken Up to Eleven with a high enough strength value, which allows you to somehow carry hundreds of corpses, or a bunch of anvils around. Though why you would want to do this...
  • Have a Nice Death: The game will tell you exactly how you died, and isn't completely above insulting you if you did something especially stupid.
  • Healing Factor: Trolls regenerate hitpoints very quickly. The player can also gain this with a very high constitution, or by wearing several rings of regeneration. Draugr can also regenerate after being killed unless you quickly destroy the body.
  • Hell Gate: The official stairway to Niflheim is just beyond the River Gioll, guarded by horrifying river monsters and the mystical Harbard. Or you can just dig straight down through the bottom of the dungeon.
  • Hit Points: It's a Roguelike after all.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Monsters can sometimes kill themselves by triggering a trap trying to attack you, but more often than not you'll be the one pulling this off instead.
  • Hollywood Acid: Played with. Acid attacks can partially corrode items that have numerical bonuses, but it can also instantly destroy some items. If the player or a monster is hit by an acid attack when low on heath then they get completely melted.
  • Hollywood Chameleons:
    • Chameleons. See Chest Monster.
    • Morphs can shapeshift into other creatures and take on several of their special abilities. Worse, they can also still change into creatures you've genocided with a scroll of extinction. The only saving grace is that they usually won't remain in such a form for more than a few turns, and they're physically less robust than the creature they're pretending to be.
  • Human Sacrifice: Three adventurers in Vidur's hall are trapped and waiting to be sacrificed; you can free them, or complete the sacrifices. Sacrificing all three causes Vidur to give up Gungnir without a fight. Letting any of them live angers him.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism:
    • Generally averted, as food simply keeps you from starving to death, though your character can consume endless amounts of it with no ill effects.
    • Rings of famine make you digest food twice as fast.
    • Potions of speed are said to speed you up by increasing your metabolism, but you still grow hungry at the same rate.
  • Hypnotic Eyes: Anssks, but only if you fight them hand-to-hand.
  • I Fought the Law and the Law Won: Commiting evil acts such as genocide or stealing from a shopkeeper causes rangers to spawn. If they catch up to you then they'll knock you out and steal items from you, and if you fight them hand-to-hand it will spawn an increasing number of them.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Eating your own species is possible but considered immoral. The gods can strike you down for your unethical behaviour if you do it enough, but that means a lot of cannibalism.
  • Impossible Item Drop: Generally averted. Loot only spawns upon a monster's death, but you can only find treasure on the bodies of enemies that would conceivably carry it, typically humanoid enemies.
  • Improvised Weapon: Almost every item in the game can be wielded as a weapon, from clay lumps and corpses to anvils. Not that this practice is recommended...
  • Infinity+1 Sword: Several divine weapons. A normal weapon with a spectacularly high bonus modifier also becomes this.
  • Instrument of Murder: The disruption horn can kill enemies by collapsing rubble on their heads when used underground. Be careful to avoid suffering a similar fate.
  • Intangibility: Potions of phasing and the amulet of ethereality allows you to phase through solid objects. Except for other monsters, strangely enough.
  • Interface Screw: Hallucinating causes all manner of random images to appear on the map and around your character.
  • Inventory Management Puzzle: You can only carry a finite amount of items and weight, and at some point are going to have to ditch items or stash them for later. While items will not degrade or get stolen while you're exploring a different level, they can be picked up or destroyed by monsters before you can get to them when you return to the area.
  • Invisibility Cloak: Available in ring or potion form. It makes you more difficult to track and improves your armour. Some monsters are also invisible as well, unless you wear a ring of third sight, or gain the ability of telepathy.
  • It's All Upstairs From Here: Played straight if you go deep underground or into the Halls of Grynr and have no way of teleporting out.
  • Just Add Water: Some alchemical mixtures can require you to add water.
  • Karl Marx Hates Your Guts: Items always sell for half their cost, and their price is fixed across all shops. The exception to this is with unidentified items, which you can potentially make a one-time profit on if you buy it, and sell it back after identifying it. If you're a sage or a blacksmith then you can also buy cheap items and craft them into more expensive ones.
  • Karma Meter: A variant. There's no reward for good actions like saving an ally, but the game does keep track of the number of evil actions you perform and will kill you if you perform enough, though it requires a lot of effort. Several other items will also work better for those with a higher morality score.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Being one of the best weapons in the game.
  • Kick the Dog: You can attack friendly characters if you want, even if there's no good reason to do so.
  • Kill It with Fire: Wands of fire, the breath of a fire dragon, fire vision.
  • Kill It with Ice: Wands of ice, the breath of an ice dragon.
  • Lethal Joke Item: Literally with the wand of amusement, which does any number of bad things. The player can also use some very unusual weapons to lethal effect.
  • Lethal Lava Land: The Wasteland. If you're not quick enough or you can't terraform then eventually the entire area is flooded with lava.
  • Level Drain: Vampires and wraiths can drain your levels, killing you if they reduce your level to zero.
  • Level Grinding: There are a few ways to do this, but require a bit of preparation if you want to survive.
  • Level Scaling: Averted. The level of the monsters you face is area-dependent.
  • Level Up Fill Up: Partially averted. You gain some HP upon levelling but the proportion compared to your maximum is kept the same.
  • Life Energy: Vampires, wraiths, and spirits can kill you by stealing yours. Players can also improve their Hitpoints by stealing it from others by using black gems.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Inverted. Magical attacks don't scale well, whereas you can get access to far better weapons and armour, and become much physically stronger as the game progresses.
  • The Little Shop That Wasn't There Yesterday: A variant. One of the possible effects of reading a scroll of wonder is that it creates a new shop out of thin air. It does avert other aspects of the trope however; once created, it'll stick around for the rest of the game.
  • Logical Weakness: Played straight with some monsters like cold-based creatures which are vulnerable to fire. Averted with others which do not have any particular weakness to their opposing element.
  • Loophole Abuse: You can't wish for a Potion of Switch Dimension, which allows you to travel almost anywhere by magic (though not necessarily reliably). But a breleor's corpse is at least as useful.
  • Luck-Based Mission: Oh so much. Prepare to sacrifice your first born to the Random Number God if you want to win.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Read a scroll of recall in the wrong place, and watch as you get torn into chunks and teleported throughout the universe. Being ripped apart by a cloud of rocks or a gale probably counts too. And try terraforming a square a monster is standing on into a mountain...

    Tropes M-R 
  • Macrogame: Ghost files allow you to run into the ghosts of your past characters. You can also find their loot too, minus any extremely powerful items, unless you take advantage of a bug.
  • Magic Pants: Averted. If you polymorph while wearing armour and rings then you can get crushed by your armour, or lose fingers.
  • Magic Wand: Lots of different types, and the primary offensive weapon of magical classes.
  • Make a Wish: The wand of wishing.
  • Magikarp Power: Writing probably fits the bill at first if you manage to acquire it at a low level, but it eventually turns into one of the most powerful skills in the game.
  • The Many Deaths of You: There are a huge number of ways to die, but some require extensive effort.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: Several undead creatures and cursed items can permanently drain your maximum HP, with no way to cure this other than by using one of the ways of increasing HP to offset the loss. As with level draining monsters, you can be killed if your max HP is reduced to zero.
  • Metagame: Players can engage in dangerous or risky acts during the first few levels of the game hoping that the RNG works out. Your opinion may vary on the practice.
  • Mind over Matter: Psionics, which allow you to mentally crush enemies with your mind. Just don't try using your own abilities on yourself.
  • Money for Nothing: What happens when you kill every shopkeeper in the game. I guess you could always animate it?
  • Monsters Everywhere: Bar a few locations in the game. Several more start off devoid of monsters and have them appear later. You can actually see them spawn out of thin air potentially if you're in the right place, or if you're telepathic.
  • Mook Bouncer: Several of them, with Scyld being the worst.
  • Mook Maker:
    • Wands of evocation and rings of genesis serve no purpose but to spawn enemies.
    • Several bosses spawn enemies to fight you.
    • Summoners and magicians both come fairly close to this as they put out very limited damage by themselves. Breeders play it straight, as they have no attacks and can only clone other monsters.
  • Mushroom Samba: In addition to potions of hallucination, several mushrooms cause you to go insane and hallucinate.
  • My Significance Sense Is Tingling: Using the skill of precognition on unknown items results in this.
  • New Game+: Not officially an option, but it is possible to deliberately sacrifice a high level character on an early level to allow a new character to access his possessions.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: The result of drinking potions of invulnerability. It is still possible to die while under the effects, but only from instant death attacks.
  • Nintendo Hard: Even as an experienced player, the game is very hard. Like NetHack, it's also possible to die without taking a single turn, but only if you're extremely unlucky.
  • No Body Left Behind: Several monsters, particularly undead do not leave any body behind when they die. The player can also suffer such a fate under certain circumstances.
  • No Eye in Magic: Anssks can only stun you if you fight them hand-to-hand while you can see. Other gaze attacks in the game only require a monster to be able to see you, and can be avoided if you can break line-of-sight before they use them.
  • Non-Human Undead: And lots of them too.
  • Noodle Incident: Several deaths can fall into this territory. Examples include being killed by a food ration (a scroll of wonder can animate nearby items), being killed by a tree (you can accidentally bring the terrain to life while terraforming), or specifying "idiots" while reading a scroll of extinction (read enough scrolls of extinction while confused).
  • No Sell: All over the place, ranging from partial resistance to complete immunity. You can do this yourself if you play the game right, including making yourself invulnerable to all attacks by drinking potions.
  • Non-Standard Game Over: Wishing for the amulet of eternal life. Also a possibility if you polymorph yourself into a plant and are unable to revert the change in time.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: What you can do to monsters, if you put them to sleep or if you use a scroll of time stop. Expect the same treatment if you get stunned.
  • The Nudifier: A cursed scroll of pure evil will destroy all your possessions. Kiss that armour goodbye! Nymphs can also steal items you're wearing.
  • Off with His Head!: Iridorns can decapitate you unless you wear a gorget.
  • One-Hit Kill: The player can do this to almost every monster in the game if you become powerful enough. Several monsters also have attacks that can kill you in a single hit.
  • Paper Master: Practitioners of origami can fold scrolls into creatures and magically animate them.
  • Planet Heck: Niflheim. You need to go there for one main quest and (probably) to deal with several sub-bosses who might otherwise make it difficult-to-impossible to reach the plain of Vigrid (where the gods are fighting Surtur and his mightiest warriors).
  • Point of No Return: Once you cross Bifrost there's no going back.
  • Poison Mushroom: Lots of them, including several varieties of mushrooms.
  • Power Floats: Invoked. Reading a scroll of knowledge can teach you the ability of levitation, which is very useful for avoiding traps or difficult terrain. Several monsters play this one straight.
  • Power Incontinence: Several powers can randomly backfire and harm you, such as mind control or terraforming.
  • Power-Up Food:
    • The corpses of several monsters can increase stats, and players can increase their strength, constitution, and maximum HP by eating urns, bleached roots, and green mushrooms respectively.
    • Black mushrooms also temporarily grant you the ability to shoot fire from your eyes.
  • Precision-Guided Boomerang:
    • Unless it breaks on impact, a boomerang will always return.
    • Mjollnir always returns after being thrown, but it's more understandable being a divine weapon.
  • Press Start To Game Over: Only if you're extremely unlucky and spawn on a stun gas trap.
  • Previous Player-Character Cameo: You can occasionally run across the ghosts of previous characters, and take their loot.
  • Psychic-Assisted Suicide: Using the power of mind control on monsters allows you to command them to kill themselves by walking into traps or dangerous terrain.
  • Public Domain Artifact: It's based around Norse Mythology. You didn't expect weapons like Mjollnir to not be in the public domain, right?
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: For the most part and not even aesthetically. An enchantress can lull male characters into a trance, so technically female characters have a slight advantage. Otherwise there's no difference between genders.
  • Quicksand Sucks: If you don't escape from it in time then you'll be sucked under and drown. It's also impossible to free yourself without a grappling hook, or by using magical means.
  • Randomly Generated Levels: As with most Roguelikes.
  • Randomly Generated Loot: Along with the levels, most loot is randomly generated. The exception is the village shop which always has a grappling hook and pick axe to sell. The bazaar's stock is also random, but the chances are very high you can find a given unique item there, providing the game hasn't already created one.
  • Random Number God: It's everywhere.
  • Rare Candy: Several, including potions of strength, scaling, holy water, constitution, and experience. Certain corpses and food items will also increase stats.
  • Reflecting Laser: The rays shot from most wands will bounce off solid terrain straight back at you if shot at the correct angle. Including mountains.
  • Ret Gone:
    • Scrolls of extinction. If you genocide a certain monster then it won't make the corpse disappear, but it will stop you from polymorphing into one, unless you bring the race back to life.
    • Archmages do this to items, making them a popular target for scrolls of extinction. If you can nullify their ability to do this however, then fighting them is very profitable.
  • Ring of Power: All rings save for delusion which pretends to be one of these instead.

    Tropes S-Z 
  • Save Game Limits: Averted for the most part. Ragnarok allows you to save every 200 turns and you can use as many slots as you want.
  • Save Scumming: Unlike various other roguelikes, Ragnarok doesn't erase your saved games upon dying making this process even easier.
  • Save The World Climax: The Final Battle of Ragnarok decides on whether the world is saved or destroyed.
  • Sdrawkcab Name: A side-effect of turning yourself dyslexic is that all items you discover from then on become this.
  • Sealed Room in the Middle of Nowhere: Phase traps will teleport you into these. Unlike other games however, the only way you're getting out is if you figure out a way yourself.
  • Sea Monster: Giant squid.
  • Shape Shifter Mode Lock:
    • You can get partially locked in if you're using a wand of polymorph and turn yourself into a creature that is resistant to rays.
    • Hitting a morph with a wand of cancellation prevents it from changing form.
  • Shoplift and Die: A very likely result if you steal early on in the game and are unable to escape, though later on shopkeepers become an easy target if you feel like taking their considerable gold. The ones in the bazaar however are some of the hardest opponents in the game and require a powerful character if you want to slay them.
  • Shock and Awe: One of the few abilities you can't get in the game, unless you wield Mjollnir.
  • Shockwave Clap: Scyld often uses this to slam you into walls.
  • Sidequest: Technically all the main quests can be considered sidequests, as they're not required for victory, and the good gods can still win Ragnarok without you doing anything. It's just very unlikely...
  • Silver Has Mystic Powers: A silver sword is considered a magical weapon (which some monsters require you to possess in order to hit them), and instantly kills werewolves on contact. Unlike other games, it doesn't do any extra damage to other creatures.
  • Sinister Scythe: Hela's Scythe, the most powerful weapon in the game. Uniquely, it's not one of the divine weapons you need to deliver to the gods at Ragnarok.
  • Spanner in the Works: The entire game revolves around you being one and foiling the prophesy that foretells the end of the world.
  • Spell My Name with an S: Most of the names and places are anglicised from the original Norse Mythology, including the eponymous Ragnarök. Baldr is also spelt as "Balder".
  • Spikes Of Doom: Spike traps, which in addition to being poisoned, are above all, spiky.
  • Squishy Wizard: Initially played straight as conjurers start as the physically weakest class, but nothing stops you from drinking potions of strength and wearing powerful armour as one. You'll definitely need to avert this to survive later on.
  • Standard Status Effects: Most of them appear in some form.
  • Stat Death: Can occur if a vampire drains your level to zero, or if your maximum hitpoints get reduced to zero.
  • Starfish Aliens: The breleor, a sort of intelligent multidimensional plant creature.
  • Suicide Attack: Gas balls and ice spheres try and kill you by exploding themselves next to you.
  • Super Drowning Skills:
    • You, unless you've learned the ability to swim. Even then, if you're carrying too much then you'll drown. And you'll always drown in quicksand if you can't escape in time. This is also played straight for most monsters.
    • Inverted with aquatic monsters. If you force them onto land then they'll suffocate.
  • Super Strength: There's no limit to the amount of strength you can gain, though it becomes much harder to raise it once you hit 18, though the amulet of might will raise it by 15 when worn. Very high values can allow a player to do very large amounts of damage, as well as carry staggering amounts of weight.
  • Super Weight: You start off low down, barely able to fend off the local wildlife, but the chances are by the end of the game you'll be one of the most powerful beings in the universe, save for the gods.
  • Taken for Granite: Just one of the many, many ways you can die.
  • Take Your Time: Averted, you only have so many turns before the Final Battle starts anyway.
  • Taking You with Me: Gas balls and ice spheres attempt to do this with a Suicide Attack. Bartoks also emit a damaging attack upon death.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: Any item can be thrown as a weapon, including items such as bodies, food rations, or anvils, though unless it's designed as a throwing weapon then it won't be particularly effective. Conventional weaponry can make for a decent throwing weapon if you have a high enough strength or it's a powerful weapon.
  • Throw the Book at Them: Well not books, but scrolls. Not likely to do much, but it could possibly save you if you're in a really bad situation. You can also throw pretty much any item in the game as well, in addition to wielding it as a weapon.
  • To Hell and Back: Niflheim, specifically. At least, you'll need to go there if you want to complete one of the six quests.
  • Too Awesome to Use: Scrolls of enchantment and knowledge can feel like this at times when you lack the ability to wish for more. Particularly so if you want to wait until you've learnt your class skill, or until you've obtained better weapons and armour before enchanting it.
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • You, potentially. Go on, feel free to genocide your race, walk off the edge of the universe, drink that potion of venom, blast yourself with the wand of death...
    • A literal example if you read enough scrolls of extinction while confused. You specify "idiots" and are wiped out.
  • Treasure Room: Menageries in underground dungeons are walled off rooms containing lots of treasure and typically guarded by very powerful monsters.
  • Trial-and-Error Gameplay: Emphasis on the error part.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Mostly explained away by the potion of second life, but rather amazingly this even works after being struck down by the gods for unethical behaviour, walking off the edge of the universe, having faded from existence, or even after having genocided your own species.
  • Unusable Enemy Equipment: Played with. Several monsters will drop the weapons they used upon death allowing you to take them for yourself, whereas certain others won't drop any weapons or equipment if they die (or if they do it's random loot).
  • Unwinnable by Design: It's perfectly possible to misplace or destroy items needed for your quests. If you fail a quest, the game will give no indication.
  • Useless Useful Non-Combat Abilities: Writing utterly averts this by being one of the most powerful skills in the game. There are several other skills that play this one straight however.
  • Vendor Trash: Certain potions and scrolls avert this by appearing to be worthless, but are valuable for use in alchemical mixtures or rewriting into more useful scrolls. Statues and rocks play this straight and serve little purpose other than to be sold for a decent chunk of gold.
  • Videogame Cruelty Potential: You can kill and even genocide friendly beings for no reason whatsoever.
  • Videogame Cruelty Punishment: Commit too many evil acts and eventually the gods will strike you down for it. You really have to be trying for this one though.
  • Violation of Common Sense: Certain scrolls that are otherwise harmful can be very useful if read while confused, and vice versa.
  • Was Once a Man: You potentially, if you get polymorphed into a monster. Also can apply if you polymorph other human enemies.
  • Weak, but Skilled: Several classes start off this way. Like NetHack, this is a good mindset to adopt at the start of new games.
  • Weapon of X Slaying: Ivory staffs do extra damage to undead.
  • We Buy Anything: Literally anything you pick up can be sold except for gold itself, though shopkeepers only have a certain amount of gold in which to pay you with. Averted for the bazaar which won't buy any items off you.
  • A Winner Is You: Your only reward for beating the game is a picture and a line of text telling you you're a hero.
  • Wizard Needs Food Badly: If you don't eat, you'll eventually starve to death after growing progressively weaker from hunger.
  • World of Chaos: Chaos. Every turn approximately 1/3rd of the level randomly changes, making it very difficult to navigate.
  • Wound That Will Not Heal: A jacchus can inflict a disease that prevents you from naturally regenerating HP over time until you cure it, though you can use other healing items such as rings of regeneration to offset this.
  • Wreathed in Flames: Fire giants, which cause anything nearby to burst into flame. Alchemists can produce a potion that allows the player to gain a similar power.
  • Yet Another Stupid Death: Just some of the many ways you can die.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Averted, and the plot of the game revolves around you doing so. It's just very hard!
  • You Will Not Evade Me: Several bosses in Niflheim can teleport straight to you, as can hel dragons.
  • Zerg Rush: The strategy used by most monsters.


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