In the quiet Port Town
of Scuttle Town, in the far-off Magical Land
known as Sequin Land, a cute
purple-haired half-genie with magical dancing powers at her disposal fights off evil. Released in 2002 near the extreme end of the Game Boy Color
's lifespan, Shantae
is WayForward Technologies
' love letter to the Metroidvania
genre. The series stars the eponymous Shantae, a sassy half-genie who works as the guardian of the town of Scuttle Town. Her arsenal? Her Prehensile Hair
and her magical belly-dancing
There are currently three games in the series (all for Nintendo consoles), with one more coming in the future (which will be for ... well, everything).
- Shantae: One day, the evil pirate captain Risky Boots raids Scuttle Town with her army of Tinkerbats and steals the Steam Engine, one of the creations of Shantae's Gadgeteer Genius Uncle Mimic. With it, she plans to build an enormous machine with which she can use to take over the world—but in order to do so, she needs the Four Elemental Stones. It's up to Shantae to track them down before she does. The game is available on the Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console.
- A sequel called Shantae: Risky's Revenge was released on Nintendo's DSiWare service for the Nintendo DSi on October 4, 2010. This time around, Risky has her sights set on a magic lamp recently unearthed by Mimic. Despite failing to prevent its theft and getting fired as the town's guardian genie, Shantae vows to recover the magic seals on the lamp and prevent Risky from using it herself.(Trailer here, soundtrack trailer here) In early September 2011, WayForward released a teaser e-mail implying that a Shantae title would soon be released on iOS devices, which was later revealed to be a port of Risky's Revenge. A Steam release of Risky's Revenge for PC was released on July 15th, 2014.
- Shantae and the Pirate's Curse, a direct sequel released October 23, 2014, starts off with Shantae adjusting to her new lifestyle when Risky reappears. Due to the events of Risky's Revenge, 20 of Risky's Tinkerbats have gained magical powers turning into Cacklebats, overthrew Risky and plan to resurrect her former mentor, the Pirate Master. As per usual in situations like this, Shantae and Risky must join forces and defeat the Cacklebats to prevent this from happening. An International Co Production with Inti Creates. The game was released for both the Nintendo 3DS and Wii U.
- Shantae: Half-Genie Hero, a brand new HD installment in the series, which was successfully funded via Kickstarter and Paypal, reaching nearly $950,000. It is set to be released on all major home consoles of the eighth generation, as well as PC (through Steam), PlayStation 3, Play Station Vita, and Xbox 360. Like Pirate's Curse, it's being co-developed by Inti Creates.
This game series provides examples of:
open/close all folders
- Action Girl: Shantae herself.
- All Anime Is Naughty Tentacles: When describing the Dribble Fountain boss to her uncle in her Character Blog.
- Amazing Technicolor Population: Well, aside from a palette-glitching trick that causes NPCs to turn funny colors, Risky Boots is almost as purple as Shantae's hair.
- Rottytops has green skin, because she's a zombie.
- Ambiguously Brown / Depending on the Artist: Shantae's skin tone has not been consistent but she's noticeably paler in the pre-release material for Half Genie Hero. Matt Bozon explained in an interview that this was a mistake caused by the lighting engine they're using, which was easier to tinker around with if the base color of the test character was light, and was never intended to be part of the final image. Alas, the uncolored test model was what the initial pre-release material based their art on, leading to a pale Shantae. Wayforward have confirmed they will fix this based on fan feedback and later pre-release images has her Ambiguously Brown again.
- Animesque: The games' style is interestingly eclectic — like sticking Japanese characters into Disney's version of Aladdin.
- Animorphism: Shantae can turn into animals in order to access new areas.
- Another Side, Another Story: Risky Boots gets her own story in Half-Genie Hero. One of the stretch goals (which has now been reached) gives Rottytops, Bolo, and Sky their own story modes too.
- Art Shift: Half Genie Hero has a cuter artstyle where everyone has larger heads and shorter necks possible due to Graphics-Induced Super-Deformed.
- Badass: Shantae, killing armies of pirates, demons and undead with her hair since 2002.
- Badass Normal: Shantae loses her powers at the end of Risky's Revenge and in Pirate's Curse has to rely on pirate equipment.
- Bare Your Midriff: Every single one of the major female characters is young and cute enough to get away with this. Even some of the female mooks get into it.
- Belly Dancer: This is actually how Shantae transforms into her various animal forms.
- Big, Badass Bird of Prey: Sky, a falconer, trains these. Her favorite bird is Wrench (who can act as a wrench). He was at an absurd size in the GBA demo.
- Book Ends: When traveling to the first dungeon of Shantae the in-universe game clock will inevitably change to nighttime, prompting the music track "Night Travel 2" to play and making all the foes in Scarecrow Fields and Tangle Forest more dangerous. When travelling to the final dungeon of Pirate's Curse, the Pirate Master blots out the sun, you fight your way through those same two areas filled with tougher enemies, and an updated remix of "Night Travel 2" begins to rock your speakers.
- Boring but Practical: The Pike Balls, rotating satellites that float around Shantae, don't sound as cool as summoning fireballs or stormclouds. That said, they're also some of the most useful (especially for raking up damage against bosses).
- Bottomless Pits: All. Frigging. Over. Interestingly, the Float Muffin item actually renders them harmless to you for a short period of time—and you actually need to use it in one place to cross a long, un-crossable Bottomless Pit to reach a Heart Container. In Risky's Revenge, they conveniently emit skulls with crossbones.
- Bottomless Pit Rescue Service: Float Muffins, mentioned above.
- The Cameo:
- Shantae in her monkey form made one in a WarioWare minigame.
- For those who backed with pledges over $12 on Kickstarter will get a code and The Drifter from Hyper Light Drifter will make a cameo in Half-Genie Hero in Risky Mode to give her a quest. In exchange, backers of Hyper Light Drifter will get a Risky cameo and sidequest in that game.
- Chekhov's Gun: Not only did Risky's weapons once belong to her old boss, the Pirate Master, her iconic skull bra and jaw belt, seen in all the games, were his face!
- The Chick: Keeping with the game's whole "girl power" theme, Bolo serves as this.
- Character Title/Protagonist Title
- Collision Damage
- Cute Monster Girl: For starters, there's Shantae herself, including some of her alternate forms. Then there's people like Rottytops and other members of the Zombie Caravan. Also quite a few female Mooks, like the Nagas and the Archers... Basically, Cute Monster Girls are kinda all over the place, with the majority being of the zombie variety.
- Cutscene Incompetence: Sometimes Shantae just stands there during cutscenes.
- Dark Action Girl: Risky Boots, Shantae's archnemesis.
- Dash Attack: The Elephant transformation can do this to destroy obstacles and enemies. Replaced with Risky's Boots in Pirate's Curse, though you need to charge it by running nonstop for a few seconds.
- Deleted Scene: That's what WayForward calls it, but you can tell it's just for fun.
- Directionally Solid Platforms
- Epic Flail: Bolo's weapon.
- Everything's Better with Monkeys: The first spell you get turns Shantae into a monkey.
- Everything's Squishier with Cephalopods:
- Warp Squids and Warp Squid-like objects are common finds in Sequin Land.
- The sequel has the Squid Baron. He has a Heel-Face Turn and will help you in exchange for finding his golden babies.
- Evil Laugh: The "Ho ho ho!" Risky lets out whenever she does something dastardly doesn't sound like most villains' Evil Laughs, but it still qualifies.
- Exploding Barrels: The boss battles against Risky's ship would be a lot harder if she didn't put these within hair whipping distance.
- Exposed to the Elements: Characters won't fear cold despite being rather inappropriately dressed in icy places.
- Averted at least partially in Pirate's Curse. Frostbite Island's wintery weather obviously makes Shantae uncomfortable.
- Fake Difficulty: There's plenty of it in the first game. The most obvious example being the enemies in the first real area that love to jump out of the ground directly below you, damaging you. There is absolutely no way to avoid it aside from never being close to the ground, which happens to be impossible until very late in the game. Some enemies like to use homing shockwave attacks before you can see them. Due to how little of the surrounding area the game shows, since the sprites are so big, there are a lot of Leaps of Faith. Some enemies hover just above where you can see them, so if you're unlucky and jump near them, you get an unavoidable hit. Sometimes it's impossible to tell where you can land, meaning you can hit enemies or other, instant death-inducing, hazards. Averted in Risky's Revenge, which even shows you which holes that are harmful.
- Fetch Quest: A few in the games.
- Finding baby squids and coffee in Risky's Revenge.
- In The Pirate's Curse of of the quests help provides a short cut in one of the islands.
- First Town: Scuttle Town.
- Flash of Pain: Some enemies and bosses do that when hit, others don't. In Risky's Revenge, all the enemies flash.
- Gainaxing: It actually really shows off both games' gorgeous animation, especially considering the limits of the Game Boy Color. Shantae will even adjust her top if you stand idle for a while in Risky's Revenge.
- Game Over Woman: Risky shows up on the Game Over screen in the first and second games.
- Genki Girl: Rottytops. She's basically a zombie cheerleader/pirate girl who loves brains, especially Shantae's.
- Goggles Do Nothing: Uncle Mimic.
- The Goomba: Tinkerbat pirates and their variations are pretty easy to defeat. Lampshaded in the manual which describes them as pretty lousy pirates. Surprisingly however the Easter Egg Tinkerbat transformation is extremely powerful and versatile.
- Gone Swimming, Clothes Stolen: Happened in her Twitter posts. Turns out, Bolo buried them after taking one look at her Empty Piles of Clothing and thinking that she melted.
- Green Hill Zone: The areas outside Scuttle Town—at least, toward the east. Toward the West, and it's more of a Death Mountain.
- Ground Pound: The Elephant transformation gains one of these if you hunt out its super attack.
- Guide Dang It: It is a Metroidvania, after all, but it's moreso needed for the plethora of items you are looking for to get 100% rather than a complex labyrinth maze you need to navigate.
- Half-Human Hybrid: Shantae is half-human, half-genie. And all adorable!
- Happily Adopted: Shantae and her beloved Uncle Mimic.
- Hard Levels, Easy Bosses: Boss battles in the games are often simple affairs save for the Final Boss, in contrast to the levels that are filled with painful enemies and tricky jumps over pits and spikes.
- Harping on About Harpies: A transformation that lets Shantae fly.
- Heart Container: Heart Holders, actually.
- He Knows About Timed Hits
- Heroic Self-Deprecation: Every time something bad happens that Shantae was unable to prevent, she beats herself up over it because she thinks her Half-Genie powers are no good for protecting anyone. In Pirate's Curse she thinks she's a bad role model with her short temper and Bedlah Babe outfit.
- Hot Wind: Seems that even the wind likes Sky.
- Human Mom, Non-Human Dad: Inverted. Shantae's mommy was a genie and her daddy was human.
- Idle Animation: In Shantae Advance demo videos, she would re-tie her waist and adjust her top. In Risky's Revenge, she adjusts her top in a different way.
- Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: In dungeons.
- Interface Spoiler: The sequel averts this by having spots on your inventory screen simply not exist until you have the item that goes there. The original, however, played it straight: It was pretty obvious from the start there were twelve items, four dungeons, and four other things. The dance screen also shows you all the transformations and towns ahead of time.
- The sequel still plays it straight, as its map gives away the fact that the game is smaller in scale compared to the original. You can tell how close you are towards the end of the game by keeping up with what sections you haven't explored yet.
- Impossible Hourglass Figure: Most of the females.
- Justified Save Point: Save Guys (yes, Save Guys) appear on the overworld in various locations, keeping track of our heroine's progress.
- Kamehame Hadoken: The Flashbolt attack and the Fireball magic family.
- Kick the Dog: Well, hair-whip the dog, in Risky's Revenge. You even get gems and a Steam achievement for it! In a less literal sense you also get an achievement for withholding the dog from its master.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: The fact that Shantae is Brought Down to Normal at the end of Risky's Revenge is such in Pirate's Curse.
- Leitmotif: The first few seconds of the title theme are reused quite a bit in Risky's Revenge.
- Let's Play: On YouTube, a user named Brickroad did a 59-part Let's Play of Shantae. You can find it here. WayForward actually linked to this LP on their official site... and when they heard that Brickroad would be unable to play Risky's Revenge because he didn't have a DSi, they bought him one. Several of the LP's injokes even make it into Risky's Revenge!
- A guy called SilverDSlite did a Let's Play of the sequel on YouTube, claiming it to be the first Risky's Revenge LP on the site. It can be found here.
- Brickroad has also done his own Let's Play of Risky's Revenge, using the iOS version, apparently at the behest of WayForward.
- Like Brother and Sister: Bolo sees Shantae like sister so she is out of his level of vision.
- Lovable Girl Maniac: Bolo, pretty much. He has a crush on Risky, thinks Rottytops is cute, and brags that good looks run in his family — just look at his grandmother...
- MacGuffin Delivery Service: Risky steals all the Relics from Shantae after Shantae collects them all. Shantae expects it to happen again in the sequel, but is surprised when she doesn't.
- In The Pirate's Curse, not only does the Pirate Master steal all of the pirate equipment Shantae has been collecting, he also has Shantae release the dark magic for him. This backfires, as the dark magic has since changed into light magic, which powers up Shantae intead.
- Magic Is Rare; Health Is Cheap: In the first game, the only way to refill skills was to manually purchase more refills. The second game added fairly common magic jar drops instead.
- Mascot Mook: Risky's Tinkerbat pirates, though they're not so much traditionally cute as much as strange and amusing. You can even turn into one if you play the original game on the Game Boy Advance.
- Kickstarter/Paypal backers could/can get a Tinkerbat transformation unlock code if they pledge(d) $55 or higher.
- Mercy Invincibility
- Ms. Fanservice: Shantae herself and especially Risky.
- Money Spider
- Mook Maker: The holes in the walls that continuously drop snake enemies on you.
- Nintendo Hard: Shantae's default attack is somewhat short-range. Add in the fact that many enemies require multiple hits to beat, and that her normal attack never gets stronger.
- In the first game, Shantae did not restart the room with full health after dying, and enemies in the overworld had twice as much health at night.
- Largely alleviated in the sequel; Shantae has much more health, enemies overall have less health, magic items are much more helpful, and her basic attack has a much longer range and can be upgraded at the store.
- Omnidisciplinary Scientist/Renaissance Man: Mimic, who is apparently a historian, an engineer and an archaeologist — he found Shantae's lamp while on a dig.
- One-Gender Race: Genies are Always Female in this universe.
- Orbiting Particle Shield: The Pike Balls.
- Our Zombies Are Different: Rottytops and the other zombies are as intelligent as anyone else, and maintain their intelligence and sanity by consuming coffee. However, they are not above eating brains, or in Rottytops case, puppies.
- Parental Abandonment: Shantae's mother was apparently raptured away into the Genie Realm; her father's absence, however, remains a mystery.
- Pirate Girl: Risky Boots, and in Pirate's Curse Shantae herself is pressed into becoming one to make up for her lost magic.
- Port Town: Scuttle Town.
- Prehensile Hair: Shantae's ponytail is a deadly whip! According to the rules of the 'verse, half-genie powers are almost always "quirky" such as having prehensile hair or being able to shoot milk out of your eye. Risky's Revenge suggests her prehensile hair was inherited from her father or otherwise her own unique skill, and is not a half-genie power; her belly-dancing transformations are.
- Recurring Riff: "Dance Room" and "Boss Battle" are each remixed in each of the games after the first, though with the removal of the actual dance room the former track serves as Scuttle Town's theme.
- Red Is Heroic: Shantae's outfit.
- Seashell Bra: The problem behind this idea is demonstrated in the following post in Shantae's Twitter account when she was trying to find something to cover herself after someone stole her clothes while she was swimming.
- Reverse Shrapnel: The Pike Ball and Fireball items.
- Scary Scarecrows: Enemies in the games. In the first game they come out from the tall background grass in certain areas continuously. In Risky's Revenge they can either walk, throw exploding pumpkins, or spew some sort of gas.
- Schizo Tech:
- Scuttle Town hasn't reached steam power yet, but there's an automatic coffee machine, and the friendly neighborhood zombies have plastic explosives?!
- The 4 year old in Scuttle Town who somehow has a digital watch.
- One of Shantae's remarks in the recap mentions how the first labyrinth boss looks like something from her Uncle's animes.
- The Ammo Baron's forces are kitted out with tanks, rifles, and "potato masher" stick grenades. He tries to upgrade his artillery to use computerized targeting.
- Secret Character: The Tinkerbat transformation.
- Sensible Heroes, Skimpy Villains: Shantae was rather self-conscious about her appearance during the official recap, while Risky was flat-out stated to hate modesty in the OST Trailer.
- Shifting Sand Land: The game does have a vaguely Arabian theme, so deserts are all over the place.
- Many other WayForward games pay tribute to Shantae in them somewhere; Risky's Revenge features several references to other games developed by the company.
- One of the alternate costumes in Half-Genie Hero is the uniform of Patty Wagon from Mighty Switch Force!.
- Thanks to Brickroad's Let's Play, there's a character in the second game called Barracuda Joe.
- If you watched BR's LP, you should remember the point where he threw a fit after realizing that Sky told him to go the wrong way. In Risky's Revenge, Sky scolds Bolo's sense of direction: "What kind of moron doesn't know EAST from WEST?"
- Several of Matt's favorite game's also show up in one way or another: Shantae's drinking animation resembles Link's from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time/The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, while her death animation follows Samus' movements from several Metroid games.
- "And grabbing the white crystal in hand, I knelt for several seconds at what appeared to be an ordinary cliff face..."
- In Risky's Revenge, the shop's description of the Flamethrower spell is "Kids love it!"
- When Mimic is describing his adventures in RR, he talks about replacing a relic on a pressure plate by emptying his bowels.
- Matt Bozon reveals in an interview that the title of Shantae: Half-Genie Hero was inspired by Ranma Ĺ.
- The sequel's Title Drop ends with the line "Let's attack aggressively!"
- One of the Steam Achievements in Risky's Revenge is "Got the Touch, Got the Power"
- In Pirate's Curse, Shantae thinks the Dancer Outfit makes her look like a "space princess''.
- Also in Pirate's Curse, two vacationers remark that one should be careful to not "cross the beams".
- When recovering to full health using an auto potion, Shantae will sometimes say "Total Destruction!"
- Shy Purple Haired Girl: Hinted at in Risky's Revenge.
- Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Mount Pointy in the first game.
- Snake People: The Naga enemies. Prior to the release of Half-Genie Hero, a Naga form was even demoed and concepted for Shantae herself.
- Spike Balls of Doom: Shantae's Pike Balls, which orbit around her body when used.
- Spikes of Doom: They are in some places. Instant kill.
- Sprite Comic: There is one made by Matt Bozon in the original Shantae website's Gallery called "Bolo gets Taken Out". In short, it is about the girls of Shantae trying to get a date with Bolo for the Harbor Town Festival the next day but he already is going with Risky. Shantae kicks him in the end.
- Steampunk: Actually, the onset of Steampunk technology is something you're trying to prevent. Sequin Island is not ready.
- Stock Femur Bone: Some of the enemies in the original game and Risky's Revenge disintegrate into these when killed.
- Stripperiffic: Egads. There's even a stripperiffic zombie.
- Super Drowning Skills: In the first game. She has learned to swim in Risky's Revenge though.
- Trilogy: The original game, Risky's Revenge and Shantae and the Pirate's Curse are considered the "sprite trilogy".
- Unexpected Gameplay Change: There are a few.
- In the first game, the (very unforgiving) Racing Minigame against Rottytops.
- The Shoot 'em Up section in the Sunken Cavern in Risky's Revenge.
- "Run, Rotty, Run!" in Pirate's Curse, in which Shantae cannot attack AT ALL and must survive a long obstacle course.
- Wall Crawl: Shantae can do this in her monkey or spider transformations but in different ways for each.
- Xtreme Kool Letterz/Letters 2 Numbers: The Leetspeak-esque "ret-2-go". They used it again in the announcement of a release date for the sequel. In a sense, it is a sort of inside joke for WayForward; they used the same line in their lesser-known game Xtreme Sports.
- World of Action Girls: Keeping to the game's flavor, the vast majority of strong characters and a lot of the stronger monsters in this game are female. Of the few major male characters, Mimic is rather helpless, and Bolo is a comic relief character. Also, genies are Always Female.
- World of Buxom: And for that matter, pretty much every single female character fails to be lacking in the chest department. Gainaxing is a common sight.
- You Gotta Have Purple Hair: Shantae and Risky Boots (although Risky's sprite in the first game has purple skin and black hair, thanks to the GBC's limited palette); Rottytops has green hair.
- Younger Than They Look: Shantae is actually 15/16 years old, despite her looks. The art-style in Half-Genie Hero better reflects this.
The First Game
- Artifact of Doom: The Magic Lamp can enslave any genie and force them to become a classic, wish granting genie to whoever holds the lamp, making the genie do anything they want. Shantae was only a half-Genie, so the lamp extracted said half, which Risky used to try to kill her.
- Awesome but Impractical: Storm Puffs. Lots of power, but a bit long of a start-up time.
- Bag of Spilling: It's not explained where Shantae's equipment, items or health went between the first two games, but her lack of transformation dances is justified by her being out of practice.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing:
- Rottytops. Subverted at the last second.
- Ammo Baron, judging by the information about the upcoming third game, Pirate's Curse. In Risky's Revenge, he's The Unfought on account of being a pretty reasonable guy behind that boisterous attitude. In Pirate's Curse, he's a recurring antagonist who tries to conquer Scuttle Town by force with an army of tanks.
- Blob Monster: A Mini-Boss in the Dribble Fountain labyrinth. The Mud Bog is also filled with various monsters of this type. In the second game Risky's Revenge there are small green slimes that spew bits of themselves as an attack.
- Book Ends: Risky's Revenge begins and ends with a pan of the sky above Shantae's lighthouse.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Shantae questions how the Squid Baron returns with the following statement:
"And besides, didn't you die in a giant 'Stage Clear!' explosion?"
- Broken Bridge: Golems with picket signs, kindly requesting that you don't smash them, are scattered in various parts of the world, preventing Shantae from entering those areas until she learns the Elephant Dance.
- Brought Down to Normal: Shantae, after she beats the hell out of her magic-half in order to prevent Risky from using it. She doesn't get better until the end of Pirate's Curse.
- Bubble Gun: Shantae's Mermaid transformation can attack like this.
- But Thou Must: At the end of Risky's Revenge, you're given the choice of whether or not to trade the magic seals for Uncle Mimic. Saying no makes Shantae announce that she doesn't have a choice, and she hands the seals over anyway.
- Chainmail Bikini: The Dancer's costume◊ present in Risky's Revenge for iOS and Google Play is very much this, though the armour is mostly aesthetic. It's still skimpy enough compared to her regular outfit that it only provides half the defensive coverage while boasting twice as much magic.
- Chain Reaction Destruction: That happens to the Squid Baron when he's defeated.
- Chekhov's Gun: Remember at the beginning of the game when it's indicated that Shantae did not take very good care of the egg Sky had tasked her with caring for? Well, later on, when a rotten egg is needed for the coffee you have to make for the Cadavers, guess where Sky gets it? Sky does not mind calling Shantae out on it, either.
- Chicken Walker: Risky's Steam Powered Oceanic Tinker Tub.
- Continuity Nod: Guess they never got around to fixing the bridge to Shantae's lighthouse that Risky shot full of holes in the first game.
- Cool Ship: Risky's Steam Powered Oceanic Tinker Tub.
- Cosplay: An NPC boy says his mom dressed up as Risky for his dad. *wink*
- Cyclops: The Ammo Baron.
- Eat the Dog: Rotty. But Shantae saves the dog to be returned to her owner in a quest.
- Enemy Without: The last boss is Shantae's magical genie-half.
- Evil Is Petty: Rottytops and her brothers kidnapped Mimic in exchange for cash, the chance to eat Shantae's brain and a lifetime supply of coffee, though that last bit is not as petty as it seems; zombies in this continuity can only retain their cognitive brain functions by drinking coffee. Still doesn't excuse Rotty selling out her best friend, though.
- Face-Heel Turn: Rottytops and her brothers, for a ridiculous reason (Shantae's brains and lifetime supply of coffee). They are visibly regretful when Risky refuses to pay up.
- Friendly Enemy: The Barons. The Squid Baron was fighting because its children were being held hostage. The Ammo Baron is never fought, and the Mayor says he'll just talk with him to reclaim the deed to the town. The third Baron may have been actively trying to warn and help Shantae.
- Genre Savvy: After getting the final Magic Seal, Shantae was expecting Risky to show up and swipe them like last time.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: Barracuda Joe mentions he got his job by doing a saucy dance.
- This risque comment from Risky, after swiping the lamp:
Risky Boots: "Now hoist my booty through the roof! Put your back into it!"
- Heel-Face Turn: One of the bosses.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: Enraged over Shantae's failure to stop the lamp heist, Mayor Scuttlebutt not only fires her from the guardian job, but starts up an aggressive public smear campaign against her.
- Hostage for MacGuffin: Risky captures Uncle Mimic and wagers his life for the three Magic Seals.
- Hub Level: Scuttle Town.
- Inexplicable Treasure Chests: And, for some reason, no one (in a game with pirates) has opened them yet.
- Item Get
- Jekyll & Hyde: Sort of. Shantae's "Mr. Hyde" is essentially herself, her Genie-Half, but only at the end of the game where Risky rips it out of her and assumes control over it.
- The Lost Woods: Lots of 'em, one of which being Tangle Forest.
- Made of Explodium: The Squid Baron. He gets better.
- Mirror Boss: The final boss.
- Moral Dissonance: After you bring Wobble Bell back to the Chef, you can "kill" it for an easy 100 Gems.
- Multi-Mook Melee: The Ammo Baron's Battle Tower.
- Mummy: An enemy type in Risky's Revenge. They explode when defeated.
- Must Have Caffeine: Rottytops and the other zombies keep their human intelligence with coffee.
- My God, What Have I Done?: Rottytops wasn't too keen on selling Shantae out in the first place, but when Risky refuses to keep her end of the bargain, Rotty breaks down and runs off weeping.
- Our Mermaids Are Different: Mermaids appear as enemies in the fittingly-named Mermaid Cliffs. They can hide in puddles of water and turn into small fish when killed. Shantae herself can learn a belly dance that transforms her into a green-skinned mermaid, a pretty standard version for the most part, but can also shoot exploding bubbles.
- Palette Swap: The Scarecrows and Knights get one. Also Dark Mimic and Shantae's genie side.
- Palmtree Panic: Polyp Bay and Mermaid Cliffs.
- Pan Up To The Sky Ending: The game ends with this.
- The Power of Friendship: Sky and Bolo decide to help Shantae in her job as the newfound Guardian- Human of Scuttle Town.
- Pun: Zombies communicate with each other via spiderwebs, in a manner resembling a message board or forum. Cue web, net, bug, and worm jokes.
- Pyrrhic Victory: The end of Risky's Revenge, for both parties. Shantae had to destroy her genie half, and is thus now entirely human. Meanwhile, Risky took the opportunity to flee. The beginning of Pirate's Curse reveals, however, that the remains of said genie half have merged with her Tinkerbats, who became superpowered and overthrew her.
- Rainbow Speak: Important items and innuendo are marked with different color in the dialogue. It is since been featured in subsequent games.
- Revenge of the Sequel: Shantae: Risky's Revenge
- Saying Sound Effects Out Loud
Barracuda Joe: Take [this key]. It's yours.
Shantae: Thanks, Barracuda Joe! You're a lifesaver! (Kiss!)
Barracuda Joe: Don't say "kiss" to me unless you're actually givin' me a kiss. Otherwise it's just words. Okay?
Shantae: Ok. (Kiss!)
Barracuda Joe: Okay, yer doing it again. Get going.
- Self-Deprecation: The first game had an infamous part when both Sky and Mimic told you to go East to reach Mount Pointy and the Twilight Dungeon since going West to that place will make you hit an impassable wall. As every player who followed this found out, they had their directions backwards. Wayforward pokes fun at this error near the end of the Risky's Revenge sequel, which has Bolo confusing East with West while discussing the location of Risky's hideout, leading to the following exclamation.
- Sequel Hook: Risky's Revenge ends with Shantae being Brought Down to Normal. Word of God says this is why they wanted to produce another title (Pirate's Curse).
- Teleport Spam: One of the bosses.
- Title Drop:
- Transforming Mecha: Risky's Steam Powered Oceanic Tinker Tub in Risky's Revenge, which can go from Cool Ship to Chicken Walker and back.
- Underwater Ruins: The Sunken Cavern.
- The Unfought:
- The Ammo Baron, since he turns out not to be a villain at all. He gains ownership of Scuttle Town without a fight, and doesn't do much other than rename it Ammo Town.
- Risky doesn't fight Shantae one-on-one this time.
- Video Game Cruelty Potential: In Risky's Revenge, you could kill the forest chef's beloved pet dog for 100 gems, and unlike the Mooks you face, he will never respawn. As 100 gems is quite a lot of money, most speed runners encourage this.
- Voice Grunting: Shantae, when she casts spells and takes damage. It is since featured in subsequent games also.
- You, Get Me Coffee: Shantae has to retrieve coffee in one quest. It turns out it's what keeps Rottytops and her brothers from becoming regular, slow and dumb zombies.
Shantae and the Pirate's Curse
- Magic Carpet: Half-Genie Hero will have a chapter revolving around an annual Magic Carpet race.
- Promoted to Playable: Certain stretch goals promised certain characters becoming playable with their own story and abilities in Half-Genie Hero. They have both been reached:
- $500,000 for Risky Boots to become playable with her own story line.
- $900,000 for Rottytops, Bolo, and Sky to become playable, though whether they each get unique stories is to be seen.
- Villain Episode: Risky Mode in Half-Genie Hero.