Video Game: Yu-Gi-Oh! The Falsebound Kingdom

Yu-Gi-Oh! The Falsebound Kingdom is a Yu-Gi-Oh! video game for the Nintendo GameCube. Rather than a card game, it is a mixture of a Real-Time Strategy and RPG.

The story is split into campaigns for Yugi and Kaiba, with a campaign for Joey unlocked after beating both of those. It begins with the various characters from the series invited to a game company, SIC, to help test their new virtual reality RPG, "Kingdom", and ending up trapped in the game world.

Taking on the role of marshals in command of teams of monsters, Yugi and Kaiba, along with other members of the Yu-Gi-Oh cast, participate in the story of a rebellion against the Sygh-Varths Empire on the continent of Rondeval, with the hope that winning the game will allow them to leave.

Along the way, Yugi and Kaiba will recruit into their forces not only other players trapped in the game, but also a few NPCs and a wide variety of monsters from the anime and card game.

This game provides examples of:

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Done in universe in Kaiba's story. When he's drawn up on charges of treason, Kaiba declares that Marthis has been looking for the chance to get him out of the way and get ahead, which is why Marthis has been useless in battle. But on the other hand, Marthis' accusations are all valid and logical - Kaiba has ignored imperial doctrine and met with a resistance leader in secret, and Marthis' usefulness in battle has been up to the player up to this point.
  • And You Were There: While the characters who are real people trapped in the game are all playing versions of themselves, there are also NPCs who are based on characters from the series, such as Pegasus (named "Pegasus J. Kroitzel" in this game). There are also many characters who are recycled from Yu-Gi-Oh! Forbidden Memories.
  • Another Side, Another Story: Beat both the Yugi and Kaiba campaigns and you unlock the Joey campaign, which shows what Joey was doing before joining Yugi's forces.
  • Ascended Extra: Scott Irvine is the Big Bad for a good amount of the game, but he actually originally appeared as a KaibaCorp technician in the anime during the testing of the Battle City Duel Disk.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: A few of Yugi's friends are brainwashed. Bakura, however, is Not Brainwashed, but instead just replaced with Yami Bakura.
  • Cliché Storm: In-universe. Since SIC focuses more on the virtual reality aspect than the plot of Kingdom, the story and setting is very cliched—a fact which Seto Kaiba is happy to poke fun at.
  • Combination Attack: Some sets of monsters have attacks that work in conjunction with certain other monsters (such as the Dark Magicians and the Dark Magician Girl, the Gemini Elves, and the Harpie Lady Sisters).
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Some computer opponents can use fusion monsters as normal monsters rather than having to fuse them.
    • Fortunately, that only happens with one monster, unfortunately said monster is Cosmo Queen, one of the better fusions of the game. In a more used and notable cheating moment, if a monster the AI owns has a Spell, even if they cannot use it (because their monster isn't high enough level to use Magic), the AI can still use said spell.
    • Also, used as a plot point when Scott Irvine takes over the enemy army. Since he made the game and controls the program, he can do things like spawn a bunch of troops to outflank the heroes, or brainwash some players. But when Irvine finally puts himself into the game world to battle the heroes personally, he's then forced to play by the rules.
  • Cyberspace: Technically the whole game takes place there, but it's most obvious in the last few stages (which are played in both the Yugi and Kaiba campaigns) where the characters have left the virtual world of the story and now have to conquer a graphical representation of the computer system that's running the game.
  • Defeat Means Cooperation: Kaiba's method of recruiting new marshals. Since he didn't come with a bunch of friends like Yugi did, everyone he recruits aside from Mokuba and Marthis has to be defeated in battle first.
  • Dirty Coward: Marthis. When you fight against him as Kaiba, his pre-battle dialogue is begging for mercy.
  • Disc One Final Boss: Emperor Haysheen in both stories.
  • Doomed by Canon: Since Joey didn't bring a whole group with him when he joined your side in the Yugi campaign, it should be pretty obvious that the Black Dragon gang will have to split up by the end.
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: The Winged Dragon of Ra only is obtained at the end of the second to last scenario of Joey's Campaign, which is only unlocked after playing Kaiba and Yugi's Campaign, making it this in spades. Of course, it carries over to further New Game Plus files, which leads into the real cases of this.
    • The game takes 6 playthroughs on an optimized run to get every monster - three of Yugi, two of Kaiba, and one of Joey. Yugi and Kaiba both have one that must be played after Joey's run. This means there are a few monsters (one of the Gemini Elves and either a second Dark Magician 1 or King of Yamimakai and Reaper of the Cards for Yugi, and one of the Battleguards, and a second Larvae Moth, Zanki, Zoa, and Crawling Dragon for Kaiba) that must be obtained after nearly everything else. Again though, these carry into New Game Plus.
  • Escort Mission: On a first playthrough, the first appearance of Tea is one of these, as her monsters are very low-leveled compared to those of the enemies you're facing and will be defeated quickly if they're attacked. Thus you have to get her to escape from the enemy forces. In later playthroughs though, her monsters may be strong enough to take on the opponents.
  • Fragile Speedster: Mai and Weevil, whose stats are skewed towards high AP, giving their monsters more actions in battle.
  • Fusion Dance: Like the card game, you can fuse certain monsters by equipping them with Polymerization and using it on a compatible monster.
  • Get Back Here Boss: Bandit Keith constantly flees during his boss fight, meaning you have to chase him down repeatedly if you want to get the rare monster in the mission.
  • Guide Dang It: Finding all the monsters in the game takes a lot of work and exploration, often leading troops into completely secluded areas. The games don't give any sort of hint to these locations.
    • The game has many ways to annoy you. It has monsters which only show up if you send a specific marshal at them, monsters which only join if you have a specific other monster as your leader, and in one memorable case a monster that only sometimes shows up. You have to be pretty precise to find certain monsters as well, which is annoying when the best guides out there can only specify up to "Somewhere in the mountains in the north half of the mission".
  • Hate Sink: Marthis, a backstabbing toady in Kaiba's campaign who takes pleasure in hurting people and is responsible for Kaiba becoming a fugitive. Taking revenge on him is quite satisfying.
  • Heel-Face Turn: Kaiba is pretty much forced to make one by Marthis, who accuses him of treason in order to get more of the Emperor's favor, but Kaiba doesn't like working for the Empire anyway so he's fine with it.
  • <Hero> Must Survive: Usually, the mission objectives will include failure if the campaign's main character is beaten.
  • I Have Your Wife: Scott holds Mokuba captive and threatens to kill him if Kaiba doesn't fight and defeat Yugi.
  • Jerkass: Marthis.
  • Justified Tutorial: Yugi and Kaiba don't know how to play the game, so the characters explain. Lampshaded in Joey's chapter, where the game simply states that the rules were explained to Joey.
  • Kneel Before Zod: Inverted. Marthis demands Kaiba stand before Emperor Heishin.
  • Konami Code: If you use it, you earn 573 gold.
  • La Résistance: Yugi's army, and eventually Kaiba's as well, are both branches of the resistance against the Empire.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: After you beat the final boss, the SIC building burns down for no apparent reason, though it is mentioned that flames are coming out the machines when you finally wake up.
  • Lost Forever: Marthis after the third chapter of Kaiba's Story. He's still available in Challenge mode and subsequent playthroughs, though.
  • The Man Behind the Man: DarkNite/Nitemare.
  • Mons: The monsters, naturally.
  • Monster Arena: The challenge mode could be considered a form of this, though it has no bearing on the campaign mode itself.
  • The Most Dangerous Video Game: Kingdom. (Not The Falsebound Kingdom itself though. Hopefully.)
  • New Game+: All monsters and items are carried over every time you finish a campaign.
    • Also, if you have used a marshall, its levels carry over (so in a Yugi New Game+, Yugi's levels will carry over). To combat this, the enemies also gain power for doing specific things in New Game+.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Kaiba escapes his execution entirely offscreen.
  • Pet the Dog: Early in Kaiba's story, he spares Bonz when Marthis is dead-set on executing him. This gains him Bonz's loyalty for the rest of the game.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Several tracks are recycled from Duelists of the Roses.
  • "Risk"-Style Map: The between-stage story segments illustrate the locations of each stage this way, as do a few parts where the characters are describing their strategies.
  • Smug Snake: Marthis and Emperor Haysheen.
  • Stone Wall: Mako and Rex Raptor, whose marshal stats prioritize high HP over all else.
  • Troll: Kaiba needles the game characters about the fact that they're in a game and mocks the cliched story when he can.
  • True Final Boss: Nitemare becomes the final boss after beating one of the campaigns, who just uses a higher level god monster.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: Usually, it's game over if the campaign's viewpoint character loses a battle.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Yugi's team is not mentioned in Kaiba's ending, nor are Kaiba and Mokuba mentioned in Yugi's. Additionally, Mako and Espa Roba have no impact on the plot once they join Yugi, and Labyrinth Ruler has no plot after he joins for Kaiba.
  • Win to Exit: The goal for most of the game.
  • Womb Level: Invoked in the final levels, as the computer system the group explores is directly compared to a body's heart and brain.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: You'd think the story would be over once you defeated the Emperor in battle, right? Well, Scott Irvine has different plans.