YMMV / Lone Wolf

  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The part in Fire on the Water with the Noodnics, a Funetik Aksented race of talking rodents who appear briefly to help you out and steal your gold, never to be referenced again.note 
  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: Better take "Weaponskill: Sword" to get the most out of the Sommerswerd.
  • Complete Monster: While the evil god Naar and his direct creations, such as the Darklords of Helgedad, are incarnations of evil itself, the same cannot be said for Naar's mortal servants.
    • Vonotar the Traitor was once a member of the magician's guild of Sommerlund, but sought to learn evil magic in conjunction with good magic to become more powerful. Vonotar sold out his nation and his people when he revealed to the Darklords that all the Kai Order would be gathered at their monastery for the holy Feast of Fehmarn, which allowed the Darklords to massacre the Kai and pave the way for their invasion. Vonotar was given command of an undead fleet of warships and prevented aid from coming to Sommerlund by sea and sent numerous assassins out to kill Lone Wolf to prevent him from retrieving the Sommerswerd. When Lone Wolf succeeded and helped beat back the invasion, Vonotar captured and tortured a former guild mate to flee to the icy wastes of Kalte to escape the wrath of both Sommerlund and the Darklords. He took refuge with the Ice Barbarians but murdered their leader and enslaved them with magical jewelry, often forcing them to commit suicide if they resisted. Ultimately captured by Lone Wolf, Vonotar was flung through a magical gateway into another dimension where he gathered the worst criminals in Sommerlund's history and attempted to cross back over to Magnamund to wreak his vengeance. While he was ultimately slain by the coincidental arrival of Lone Wolf, Vonotar the Traitor served as an effective Starter Villain and showed just how far men can fall to evil in their pursuit of power.
    • Zakhan Kimah is the cruel, tyrannical usurper king of Vassagonia. Kimah began his career by leading the Sharnazim, Vassagonia's Secret Police, and would root out and torture any potential dissidents to the Zahkan's rule. Ever power hungry, Kimah made a pact with the Darklords and murdered the previous Zakhan, Moudalla, to seize control of the country. In exchange for the Orb of Death, Kimah lured Lone Wolf to Vassagonia in the guise of peace talks with the intent of handing him over to the Darklords. When Lone Wolf escaped capture, Kimah had the innocent boat crew that carried Lone Wolf denounced as traitors, publicly executed, and their heads stuck on pikes as examples. While Lone Wolf would ultimately end up escaping his grasp and slaying one of the Darklords, Kimah stayed in their good graces by becoming the only human nation to ally with the forces of evil. He would go on to lead a great army for the Darklords and slaughter or enslave every village or town he came across as he made his way to the neighboring capitol city of Tahou. Leading the assault on the city wielding the Orb of Death, Kimah made it clear in his taunts to Lone Wolf that he intended to raze the city and murder every innocent inside the walls of Tahou.
    • Archdruid Cadak is the lord of the Naar-aligned nation of Ruel and master of the Cener Druids. Commanding his ancient cult to master the arts of poisons and plagues, Cadak sought to make the world of Magnamund appropriate to Naar's tastes by creating a deadly plague that would wipe out all life on the planet with the exceptions of those Cadak saw as worthy. Under Cadak's guidance, the Cener Druids bred terrible abominations to use as Cannon Fodder, used biological weapons on neighboring countries, and captured enemy soldiers and civilians to use as test subjects for their poisons and plagues. When Lone Wolf destroyed the deadly plague, Cadak swore undying vengeance on him and all he held dear. He would go on to capture Lone Wolf's closest friend, the mage Banedon, and torture him while trying to lure Lone Wolf into a trap that would kill both of them. Failing that, Cadak made one final attempt to enact Naar's unholy designs by using the powerful Deathstaff to summon the demoness Shamath and resurrect Vashna, the most powerful of the Darklords. Cadak intended to use Vashna and his undead legions to overrun Magnamund and annihilate the rest of the world. Cadak's plans were again foiled by Lone Wolf and the wicked archdruid was slain, but Lone Wolf had not seen the last of Cadak as he makes one final appearance in Naar's evil realm as Lone Wolf trekked through it. Cadak pleaded with Lone Wolf to free him from his well-deserved torment, but he only intended to trick Lone Wolf into taking his place in eternal damnation.
  • Counterpart Comparison: The Kai Lords, a monastic order of psionic knights trained since the age of seven, and reborn from a single member after nearly-complete destruction, look a lot like the Jedi.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse
    • Alyss, the Canon Immigrant demigoddess with the attitude and appearance of a rebellious punk teenage girl. She originally appeared in the novel series, wherein many fourth walls were broken, but was then seen near the end of the Grand Master series, saving Lone Wolf at least once and then setting up the plot for the final book by snatching the Moonstone from under Naar's nose.
    • Firestone. Despite being given maybe three mentions throughout the Grand Master books, he is implied to be Number Two to Lone Wolf himself, in charge of leading the Monastery and keeping things running while Lone Wolf is on his adventures. Many fans like to think that he is the Grandmaster having his own missions in the New Order series note 
  • Evil Is Cool: Most of the good guy nations are your standard high fantasy kingdoms, while a lot more imagination was put into the evil hordes and nasty places.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: The books don't shy away from showing how much a medieval world can suck, such as with a mention of infant mortality rates. Yet any attempt to fix things is shown to be inherently misguided; the Moonstone eliminates the scourge of disease and infant mortality, and this is presented as a bad thing, the Shianti were told to keep their paws off of humanity even though they were just being helpful, and the one Shianti who disobeyed this rule ended up being driven insane when his magic Sunstone exploded because mere mortals meddled with it.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The series is almost universally popular among Italian tabletop gamers, where the Kai Knights have been redubbed "Ramas Knights" and a few names have been changed around to emphasize the "medieval fantasy" feel of the setting.
  • Heartwarming Moments:
    • In Book 11, a bunch of ghostly beings first scare Lone Wolf with visions of every enemy he's ever faced, then they show him visions of his family and every friend he's ever made. All of these people helped shape his destiny. Afterwards, Kai himself arrives to give him encouragement and then teleport him to his destination.
    • In Book 18, Lone Wolf notices a crowd gathered around a faith healer. The angry mob is ready to attack him for having no progress in fixing a woman's headache. When Lone Wolf realizes that the man has no powers, but genuinely wants to help people, he discreetly uses his own powers to cure the woman, turning the old man into a hero for his village. Funny Moment: As part of the act, Lone Wolf plants the old man's hands on the woman's chest.
    • Another one from Book 18. After defeating the Ghost of Roark haunting the ruined and deserted town of Amory, Lone Wolf wakes up in the morning to sunshine and birdsong, and his spirits are lifted when he realizes that life is already returning to the place.
  • Ho Yay Shipping: Lone Wolf and Banedon.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Many, many, many creatures of Magnamund (or the Daziarn, or the Plane of Darkness...) are absolutely nightmarish in appearance. Their descriptions are short but vivid, with nice details added (like how much they inspire revulsion to Lone Wolf) and with plenty quality illustrations, mostly from the protagonist's viewpoint (that is, more often than not, when the monster is about to gut you). And you get plenty of Red Shirts or Mauve Shirts' disturbing deaths, just to demonstrate how nasty those critters are.
    • The Helghast and Crypt Spawns, although already quite horrific, are hardly the worst of the lot.
    • The Cener Druids in particular are dedicated to producing Nightmare Fuel. The Forest of Ruel is full of nasty things, and they're nothing compared to what's in the fortress of Mogaruith.
    • The Rahkos from Book 7, a brain-eating, undead severed hand, is largely believed to cause the most Squick-inducing death...
      A searing pain explodes behind your eyes as the hand clamps itself to your head. As the decaying fingers pierce your scalp, forcing their way through your skull, your vision turns red and your body shakes uncontrollably. The hideous claw burrows deeper, feeding on the only source of nourishment that can sustain its existence: living human brain.
      Your life and your quest end here.
    • Big Bad Naar, the King of Darkness, manages to top his grotesque minions when you finally see an illustration of his favored form in Book 19. It's not so much the Body Horror, nor the eldritch puddles of black oil oozing from every pore... no, the worst part about Naar is that he has the eyes of a man.
  • That One Boss:
    • Zakhan Kimah and his Orb of Death (though he's a skippable fight if you successfully throw the Dagger of Vashna at him, but you don't get the option to do so if you have the Sommerswerd).
    • Far from the only example; as mentioned in the main article, this is the trade-off if Lone Wolf brings the Sommerswerd with him on his quests. There is at least one enemy that's nigh impossible to beat without the Sommerswerd that can't be avoided though: the Deathlord Ixiataaga.
    • The Chaos-Master in book 11 is another infamous example where the Sommerswerd makes life much, much more difficult for you.
    • The Kleasa from the World of Lone Wolf series. It is by far the most powerful enemy Grey Star ever actually fights in the series and boasts High Combat Skill, Endurance, and the ability to drain Grey Star's Endurance and Willpower even if Grey Star magically shielded himself right before the fight. It's also one of the few enemies Grey Star can't avoid fighting no matter what. And it appears in the first book. Because of this, if you roll low on your starting scores it is extremely difficult to finish the book wihout rules abuse — that you can use the magic seed to do X9001 damage. Humorously, using the seed causes an instance of Script Breaking. Project Aon suggests "fixing" this bug, leaving you a bit screwed.
  • That One Puzzle: One puzzle in The Legacy of Vashna (a logic puzzle that doesn't give you enough information to work out the answer) is literally unsolvable without extreme out of the box thinking or flipping to random sections in hopes it will be right. Fortunately, you don't have to know the answer to progress, but knowing the answer does evade a combat. Word of God is that the riddle wasn't supposed to be unsolvable, but a part of the question was missed out.
  • Villain Decay: Book 15's Big Bad, Drakkar Warlord Magnaarn, almost literally goes through Villain Decay. From a cunning badass warrior general who buries Lone Wolf alive in a trap to a shriveled and mummy-like puppet of his own Artifact of Doom on the brink of undeath.
  • The Woobie: Tavig, a character Lone Wolf may encounter in Book 7. He's just some poor guy who took on the mission of invading Castle Death to pay for his sister's ransom. After being thrown into The Maze twice, all he wants is to escape. Why is he a woobie? Let's just say that if the hero meets him, he'll only get a quick death if Lone Wolf kills him. Otherwise he'll either be torn apart by dog men or slowly crushed to death by a giant fist. Yeah, Castle Death's a fun place.

    It gets worse. The Updated Re-release has a bonus adventure where you take control of Tavig early in his jaunt into Kazan-Oud. He kills some nasty bad guys, thwarts a plot by Zahda to escape the island, and saves a damsel in distress, and as they reach their escape, he sets her loose and goes back into the castle to his inevitable fate. Poor guy.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/LoneWolf