See also The Great Mardek Theory Thread, located on the game's home site.
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Pseudolonewolf reads TV Tropes.Seriously, the guy has referred to, like, twenty tropes BY NAME. Now, Lampshading's common, but this... This guy has to be a troper.
The Shocking Story-Dividing Event
Pseudolonewolf has said before that there will be a major event that separates chapters 1-4 and 5-8. Any guesses on what that might be may go here.
Gaspar is going to destroy Belfan in chapter 4.The Fig Hunter Encyclopedia refers to Belfan in the past tense, implying that something happened to it. And Qualna says that Gaspar's approach is "Go in and burn everything". Presumably he'll burn Belfan to the ground looking for Rohoph, or perhaps he'll destroy an elemental crystal? There is a huge volcano in southern Belfan (the one you go through to find the fire temple). A minor NPC in chapter 3 mentions that if it erupted, it could wipe out all life on the planet. Gaspar is a pyromancer. Chekhov's Gun much?
Rohoph is going to be separated from Mardek at some point.Rohoph seems to be controlling Mardek more and more, and also seems to be a bit evil. Deugan probably isn't going to like this, and he probably remembers that Rohoph let a clue slip about removing his soul from Mardek without killing him. Deugan will probably find out and try to do that.
Rohoph or Enki's ship will be repaired, and Mardek and friends will fly to Anshar.That's it. No dramatic Earth-Shattering Kaboom or whatever. The only difference is a change of scenery.
Something will happen to the Aether Crystal.If taken or destroyed, whether Gaspar intends to or not, all life on Belfran will become weakened and there will no longer be any birth. The threat of gradual planet-wide extinction will force the characters to stop Gaspar/leave the planet to save it somehow.
Gaspar burns Goznor to the ground.This makes Goznor a Doomed Hometown and give Mardek a personal reason for seeking out Gaspar, not just for destroying his home but for outright killing everybody who lives there before they have a chance to escape. Mardek will be Darker and Edgier and becomes a Villain Protagonist with Rohoph's influence.
Gaspar burns Aeropolis to the ground.Giant Volcano + Gigantic Air-Aligned City = lots of delicious destruction. One of the NPCs in Aeropolis even mentions how devastating a volcanic eruption would be to the city.
Chapters Five through Seven or Eight will focus on an entirely different set of heroes.Think Golden Sun. Whether or not Mardek and company show up would be debatable, Mardek likely would since the series is named after him. The guess states "Seven or Eight" since it's possible that both groups of heroes unite for a final battle in the last chapter.
One of Mardek's allies will be possessed, forcing him to kill them.It seems like the next logical step on Rohoph's path down the slippery slope - first he killed an insane necromancer, which (if not for the soul gem, anyway) would really be putting him out of his misery; then he killed someone who could barely be considered villainous at all, was in fact trying to help Rohoph realize the gravity of the situation, and could even have been a close ally. Given that Gaspar is fire-elemental, this might suggest that he'll end up possessing Donovan - which, in addition to the fact that he's known Mardek for a long while, would be a Very Big Deal given that he's the Prince of Goznor - or Mereador, which would be an interesting mix of heart-wrenching and hilarious given the major differences between the two.
High Priest Vudu will ascend to major villain status.Given that he's a major figure in the biggest religion on the planet, he's Dark-elemental and specifically evil-aligned, and he obtains a madness-inducing artifact capable of doing YALORT only knows what during Chapter 3... then yeah, this seems pretty likely. Could dovetail with the "something terrible is going to happen to YALORT/Yalortianism" theory below. The way I see it, either he'll end up siding with the Governance de Magi, vastly complicating things both in terms of difficulty and keeping Rohoph in check, or he'll end up fighting the Governance de Magi (while simultaneously opposing Mardek's party), causing untold collateral damage.
The Governance de Magi
Melchior will be really, really tough and insidiuous.The GdM, despite their occasional silliness, have shown themselves to be rather effective villains. Thus, whenever Melchior is finally called in, he/she will be revealed to be an expert in Obfuscating Insanity.
The Governance de Magi members will all be Flunky Bosses.So far, both of the ones we've fought have been. Gaspar might be more straightforward, but it's entirely possible that Pseudolonewolf will continue the pattern.
Rohoph will be the final or semifinal boss.Judging from chapter 3's ending, Rohoph is Jumping Off the Slippery Slope and sprinting towards becoming a Knight Templar hard and fast. I suspect that Mardek's friends aren't going to like this, and Rohoph and Mardek are going to be separated somehow. When they get to the Violet Crystal, Rohoph will execute a Face-Heel Turn and/or go crazy. I'm thinking that he'll probably be like Gruen in Raider, where you fight him before the actual final boss, and his battle music would probably be a remix of Rohoph's Theme or something.
Moric's inspiration for becoming a necromancer — and the reason for his fractured mind — was the death of a loved one.Right before he dies in chapter 2, he mentions the name of an annunaki we haven't heard anything about yet. It's possible that this was his mate, who died years before the game began. Their death could have deeply traumatized Moric, and he became a reclusive, borderline insane necromancer because of it.
Qualna's traits that were amplified by the Violet Crystal were his pacifism and submissivism.When were are first introduced to Qualna to his first two appearances in chapter 1 and 2, one could have easily believed that the Violet Crystal made him an Insufferable Genius and a Smug Snake. Indeed, when possessing King Gonoroth, he can't even keep in character, dropping insults about the human race (much like Rohoph does). Later, however, we see that it was all in act, that Qualna was merely acting like a smug bastard in order to make the Governance think he was on their side. He tries to get Rohoph to come back with him and gets distressed when Rohoph intends to kill him. Accepting his possible fate, he barely puts up a resistance and hopes that Rohoph will be kind enough to allow him passage to the afterlife. After Rohoph seals him away and we get a dreamstone, we find out that he not only knew that the Violet Crystal were affecting his and the GdM's minds but it had greatly affected Rohoph too. Not only that, but he, like Rohoph, also wanted to destroy the Violet Crystal before it was too late. However, fearing he would be chased off like Rohoph, he put up his prideful act, using the persona of Clavis as a mouthpiece for his true views and we see him act more like his true self both after the death of the king and in the Astral Tunnel. Qualna has alwasy been a diplomatic person and preferring to use words instead of weapons; the Violet Crystal amplified these characteristics, which is why he turned out nicer than the rest of the GdM, Rohoph included.
Melchior will be the last Gd M sent to kill Rohoph.Melchior tends to be pretty popular and for good reason; he has the best lines. As such, Anu will send Belthazar, possibly because Anu might see him as the most competent member and, when he fails, will have no choice but to send Melchior last. That means Anu will be stuck with Melchior. Alone. With no one else to talk to. He'll have to deal with Melchior and his Cloudcuckoolander ways. Hilarity Ensues
Anu is really the Big Good.Anu realized that the galaxy was stagnating under the rule of the Gd M. In order to ensure that those important to him/his next incarnation would see a better future, he summoned the Violet Crystal and caused Rohoph to rebel. Sending the Gd M off to die at Rohoph's hands is actually a Thanatos Gambit/ Suicide by Cop attempt.
...will be back.Soul sealing, especially just for vengeance, is NEVER a good idea. Toward the end of the eighth game, Mardek will realize that Rohoph is the villain and his dying action will be, as a "Screw you" to Rohoph, to release the Gd M so that they join with his friends (and Anu kicks out Steele) and fight him.
Rohoph will commit a Dark genocide on Anshar due to the effects of the Violet Crystal on his mind.Rohoph is obsessed with "goodness", light, and order. He once mentioned during a party reaction that he will "Bring light to Anshar". In the Dark Temple, he states how not only does he hate all Dark Temples, but Dark itself and thinks that everyone only needs Light. While we have yet to see one, apparently there does exist Dark people of the Good alignments, plus Dark is needed to make people unsatisfied enough to want to improve themselves and/or society, but Rohoph can't see that. As such, he'll probably either destroy the Dark crystal of Anshar and/or start a plan to kill everyone of his kind that is of the Dark element, even if they are Chaotically/Neutrally/Lawfully-Good; killing a Always Chaotic Evil person is one thing but a Good person just because of their element? Sounds like the plan of someone who's mind is warped, the kind of thing that the Violet Crystal does.
The Violet Crystal
The Violet Cyrstal actually repressed Rohoph's evil.The Crystal did not have an evil influence, per se, so much as a dark one. Vehrn demonstrates that zealotry and self-righteousness are probably inherently light-elemental flaws. The Violet Crystal's effects dampened these tendancies in Rohoph, leading to the personality he shows at the end of chapter one. As the effects wore off, Rohoph's natural personality began to show again.
The creature inside the Violet Crystal is a necroparasite.Raider and MARDEK are set in the same universe — the same galaxy, even — and the creature inside the Crystal looks suspiciously similar to a necroparasite. In Raider, they're shown to have some possession and mind-controlling abilities, which would fit with what's happening to the GdM. We also never saw the ending of Raider; it's possible that, after defeating the Parasite Queen, a single necroparasite escapes into the void of space, or the Parasite Queen is so powerful that the only way to stop it is to imprison it inside the Violet Crystal. It then falls to Anshar in a meteorite, and the rest is history...
The Violet Crystal is the fig crystal of the entire universe, and only one fig crystal is needed for all sentient thought in the universe.The libraries talk about the ether crystal, but not about a fig-elemental one. Apparently, YALORT didn't create one when forming Belfan, and therefore, it does not seem like it is a necessary component for life. However, what if there is one very powerful fig crystal that is the source of all minds and thought in the entire universe? (Or just the galaxy, if you prefer) It was probably lodged in a meteorite somewhere, and came to Anshar when the meteor fell. The mind-warping stone in the lost monastery may be similar. (A shard, perhaps?) Alternatively...
Each planet does have its own fig crystal, but instead of being formed at the planet's creation, it falls from the heavens at a later date.So far we have seen two objects that could possibly fit the description of a fig crystal. Both have fallen to planets in meteorites, and again, the libraries make no mention of creation deities making fig crystals when forming planets. Perhaps it falls when the planet is "ready", and helps advance it technologically? (i.e., starts it going technologically when it's been stuck at a Class IV or V state for a while, since those classes have little to no technology) The lost monastery's stone is probably a mistake — again, possibly a shard. Belfan might not have been ready for it yet, so the minds weren't fully capable of adjusting to its power, and they broke instead. (However, since elemental crystals are nigh-indestructible, if a shard managed to break off, it implies that something very bad could have happened to Belfan's fig crystal)
The Violet Crystal planned Rohoph's rebellion.Qualna reveals that Rohoph was also altered by the Violet Crystal in Chapter 3, and he has clearly decided to went Jumping Off the Slippery Slope and is practically the Token Evil Teammate by the end of Chapter 3. He is probably the weakest of the GdM on his own, and the VC and/or the creature inside it could easily pick him off after having Rohoph kill all of the others.
Rohoph did not jump off the slope due to the Violet Crystal's influence.Or at least, not solely due to it. In Chapters 1 and 2, Rohoph was rather insulting, but showed no indications of being a genuinely evil person; only in Chapter 3 did his change truly become evident. Now, what happened between the end of Chapter 2 and the beginning of Chapter 3? The same thing that happened to the Volcano Shaman— he sealed someone's soul away. What was enough to drive the shaman to madness would surely be enough to drive Rohoph to it as well, especially considering the fact that he had done so to someone he had thought was once his friend, only to find out that Moric despised him. This could have easily shattered his mind— or at least severely harmed it— over the course of three years.
YALORT and Other Deities
YALORT is real....And Pseudolonewolf is his prophet, attempting to spread the word of YALORT subliminally via his flash game series.
YALORT will be an optional boss.The fact that there's a Divine element implies that we'll be fighting a god at some point, and a fight against YALORT would be really amazing. Plus, the bonus bosses are pretty epic as it is — the only way to top that would be to fight the creator of the entire galaxy.
SOLAK will be a boss, either optional or mandatory.And he'll either be incredibly difficult, with a wide variety of powerful Divine and Light attacks (and, to compensate for Mardek and Vehrn, Inversion: Light)... or a complete pushover steamrolled halfway through the dungeon where you fight the actual Bonus Boss.
Something terrible is going to happen to YALORT, or to the Yalortian religion.In Pseudolonewolf's platforming-slash-dating sim game "Clarence's Big Chance," the date asks about religion, to which you can answer that you are a Yalortian. If she answers positively to this, she mentions that there aren't many Yalortians left after something called "the Dreaded Incident." Now, maybe this is a one-off gag, but it's entirely possible Pseudo was foreshadowing future events in one of his other games...
Next Chapter Predictions
Chapter 4 will not have a Time Skip.Chapter 2's was lampshaded and weakly justified, chapter 3's was fully justified. However, if chapter 4 has a Time Skip, things will get a little ridiculous, since Gaspar is not one to screw around and will probably proceed with his "burn everything to the ground" plan immediately. It would also reduce the sense of urgency if he is indeed going to destroy Belfan.
Mardek will meet up with Enki in chapter 4.If Belfan is going to be destroyed, Mardek will have to meet up with his father before then. Plus, his dreamstone seems to hint that he knows about the annunaki, and apparently doesn't like them, which causes a lot of potential drama if he finds out Rohoph is possessing Mardek. Also, Lilanea's line "I am a patient woman, but I cannot wait much longer" strikes me as Foreshadowing.
In chapter 4, you'll fight the World's Saviours for the final time, and they will end up dying in an Alas, Poor Villain moment.Perhaps they will try to fight you for an actual reason, or Bartholio finally gets his hands on a crystal, but turns insane or something because of it. You'll end up killing them in the end. Also, if chapter 4 does wrap up business on Belfan, that'll probably have to happen, unless the WS manage to become stowaways on the ship to Anshar or whatever.
Future/Returning Party Members
There will be around 30 party members total.Consider the number of slots available on the save crystal's party screen. Prepare for lots of level grinding.
Individual guesses (feel free to add/edit)Deugan (rejoining):
The Stone from the Lost Monastery changes the alignment of mortal souls to the Fig element.From the Fig Hunter wiki: "People of the Fig element are exceptionally rare. They have unusual mental skills such as psychic powers, though their minds can often be on a level 'beyond genius', such that they work on a completely different wavelength to others and seem 'insane'." Why would this be the case? Well, we know that Fig is the element of the mind, and that the Dreamrealm, a.k.a. the "Figrealm", is the home of thoughts and dreams. It may be theorized that people of the Fig element are more in tune with the Dreamrealm; this can range from merely being somewhat out of touch with reality for people who are just slightly more Fig than any other element, to being completely cut off from real world stimuli for people that are almost entirely Fig-elemental. If the above is true, then we can go on to argue that the Monastery Stone (which many people believe is a whole or partial Fig Crystal) increases the concentration of the Fig element in mortals exposed to it, eventually shifting their elemental affinity to Fig. Over time, they go from being mildly spaced out to completely insane as the concentration of Fig continues to grow. We know that Bostolm was exposed to the stone. Consider that he constantly raves about Pixies, and that they are very common within the Dreamrealm, a Fig-elemental parallel dimension, it may be the case that his mind is almost completely inside the Dreamrealm, where he constantly encounters Pixies (as your party does while walking through the Dreamrealm), and is almost always under the influence of Addle Gas. His one moment of lucidity may have been during a time in between Pixie encounters.
Enki is the captain of the scientists in Xantusia.Listen to "Fallen From The Stars", the background music for the spaceship. It quotes "Enki's Theme". Also remember what Lykel says about their captain — "He always liked that swords and sorcery stuff. When we crashed, he grabbed a sword and started helping people." This would also explain why Enki refused to talk about his past to Lilanea, since obviously he wouldn't want to say "I'm from a different planet! :D" We will probably find out when/if Mardek meets up with him in later chapters. Notably, if he is, then he might be able to repair Rohoph's spaceship (or his own, for that matter), which would give the party means to travel to Anshar.
The soul gems will be used for something.It's been theorized that the creature within the Violet Crystal will use them to free itself. It's also possible that they're necessary to unlock an optional dungeon, a la the Miasmal Chalices.
Muriance is the reincarnation of Xaephros, and will get the dark crystal for himself.Who is Xaephros? Well, in one of the dreamstones, a scene about Solaar's past is shown. There, a prophet has a vision, and he claims that a villain will try to get his hands on the dark crystal, and this would bring death and destruction. He says that this villain could be the reincarnation of Xaephros, the Chaosbringer, who probably was one Solaar's kind and sought the crystals for himself. Solaar is sent to Belfan (the villain would appear at Belfan) to prevent this from happening. This, on its own, would hint that Steele would be Xaephros. But, there is a dreamstone that contains Muriance's thoughts. He thinks about the crystals, and how he needs to get his hands on them, even though he doesn't understand why. And, interestingly enough, he has seen dreams of greatness in which he is a dog. If you draw a line from the dots that there dreamstones form, you can see the full picture. Muriance is the actual reincarnation of Xaephros, and he feels that he should get the crystals, and sees dreams about being powerful, and a dog. But, these are probably either memories about his past life, or just reflections of his past nature. Anyway, it is quite clear that he indeed is the reincarnation. And, the prophet of Solaar's thoughts said that he would get the dark crystal. So, I'd say that the Mardek and friends go and defeat Steele, but the crystal ends up on Muriance, this fulfilling the prophesy. I don't know what happens then, though. Maybe he will gain a massive power-up and manage to escape Belfan's (theorized) destruction? Maybe he'll use Rohoph's escape pod and Mardek and others will use the larger spaceship?
Bostolm has Obfuscating Insanity.If you level Legion up to level 30, Bostolm will suddenly become lucid for a moment, before Baron von Doomkill tells him to shut up and start blathering about pixies again. He hastily complies. The high priest of the lost monastery also says that Bostolm was one of their wisest members, so perhaps he did resist the effects of the purple stone, but doesn't want to show it for some reason? Perhaps we will find out more in later chapters. Or, perhaps he's normally wise and lucid, but just has an irrational fear of pixies that causes him to freak out whenever they're mentioned or he thinks they're around. (Which is apparently all the time...)
The final boss' element will be Divine.A non-elemental enemy would be pretty tough to take down, since they would have no weaknesses, and you wouldn't be able to resist their attacks either. It would be fitting for a Final Boss. Mental Worlds. Mardek's will probably be the dragon's lair, where he has to face off against The Dragon for real.
All the chapters will end with Downer Endings, including the final one.So far, the chapters we've seen have ended on progressively worse notes, and it could be said that chapter 3 had an outright Downer Ending. This could be setting the stage for what's to come; everything is going to end badly. Maybe Pseudolonewolf will subvert our expectations by ending the series with a good ending, though. Who knows? Alternatively, the trend of downer endings will reverse as part of the Shocking Story-Dividing Event, especially if it involves Rohoph.
Not only is Mardek's father not from Belfan......he's also a member of whatever equivalent of the royal family his world has. The fact that he's likely the captain of that extraterrestrial ship already implies he's fairly important, but also look at his last name: El-Regis. "Regis" is Latin for "king." Pseudolonewolf's a pretty smart guy, if all of the shoutouts, trope references, meaningful names, and bilingual and such are any indicator. It's not too far-fetched that he would know the word. Also, he's used the term for one other character's surname: Donovan's, and we all know whose son he is...
There will be a crossover with Raider.Pseudolonewolf is supposed to be working on the third version of Raider some time after finishing the third chapter. Now that the third chapter's out, he'll presumably start it soon enough. And, since both games are set in the same universe, what better way to get that across but have Arkus end up joining the party (or something)?
Bernard is the guardian of the Dark Crystal.He mentions at one point that he prefers that one to the others (although he is dark element, so...). He's also said to be limiting his power, so who knows how strong he really is, very possibly strong enough to be a boss of his own.
Bernard the old man is Bernard Stormkiller.They share the same name! All coincidences are true! Also explains why he gives off hints of him being a Retired Badass who's using a Power Limiter. (Bernard Stormkiller is the Dark-elemental hero mentioned in the leftmost bookcase in the Goznor magic shop.)
Bernard is going to either bring Rohoph back from the brink, or give him a taste of his own medicine.Given that he's the only major Dark-aligned but non-Evil character (not counting Martin) to show up so far, and that he has a tremendous amount of power he's holding back, he seems like the choice candidate to either bring about a Heel Realization on Rohoph's part... or extract him from Mardek's body, stuff him in a soul crystal, and rub it in his face (if only because bringing about poetic justice is entertaining).
Rohoph is holding back on the full extent of his power.It's taken Rohoph 8 years to regain the ability to heal, cleanse status effects and buff allies? He, the Annunaki with the greatest prowess in Light magic? Something isn't right, especially since Moric's soul transfer, if anything, made him more powerful within the day. Yes, there is the problem of using Mardek's body to do so with Mardek still in it, but he's had an awful long time to figure this out.
Mardek will ascend to godhood at the series' endThe series' title is officially written in all caps, the same way as names of deities in-universe. Also, the mythological Marduk rose to power after defeating the leader of Anunnaki.
Miasmal theory is incorrect.Essentially, monsters being mindless creatures born of miasma to wreak havoc frees people (such as Emela or Mereador) from guilt over killing them, as opposed to the human enemies. However, a couple of things make this seem odd. For one, it's noted that creatures can be partially miasmal, such as pixies; also, at least one kind of monster (Gruuls) can be domesticated. Finally, creatures such as undead and golems add to Miasmal Chalices, despite being formed of something other than miasma. This could be Gameplay and Story Segregation, or just Fridge Logic, but consider what game we're talking about. More likely, it's setting everyone up for a one-two punch of What Measure Is a Mook?— even those which were assumed "okay" to kill will be revealed as more intelligent and/or innocent than previously thought. From the evidence in play, Miasma is more likely something akin to blood or life force than the entirety of a random encounter's existence.
Rohoph can only bring out Mardek's natural magical talent.Similar to the Rohoph is holding back his full power WMG, only in this case, it's unwillingly. Mardek was born of the light element, and his father is a famous adventurer who is probably not from Mardek's world that presumably knows a thing or two about magic. Mardek's personality is perfect for a healer, too—he's mostly a laid back type of guy, which is fitting for his passive skills. So in the years, Rohoph has been unlocking Mardek's true potential through his guidance, not through his own power. Rohoph is therefore either incapable or extremely limited in his ability to use his own magic which Mardek could never learn.
Only Belfan has an Aether Crystal.It's mentioned a few times by Rohoph that Belfan has something weird with its gravity, and the Aether Crystal is theorised to be/to be at the planet's core. It's possible that, due to Aether and Fig being opposites, with the Violet Crystal likely being the Fig Crystal, the Aether Crystal attempts to draw those affected by the Fig Crystal towards itself in order to destroy/purify them, which is why Rohoph came crashing down so suddenly... And possibly why he's suddenly showing signs of further derangement, as the Aether Crystal could very well be attempting to pull his soul apart. Or something it could do.
Emela wasn't the one who shot Steele with lightning in the first placeInstead, it was Muriance defending himself from the assault.