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*** Before Sammaster's meddling, the Dracorage Mythal [[InvokedTrope invoked]] ominious astrological signs of the coming disaster -- rather than simply keying the Mythal to go into active mode at regular intervals, the elves that created it keyed it to the light of a periodally returning and rather striking comet.

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*** Before Sammaster's meddling, the Dracorage Mythal [[InvokedTrope invoked]] ominious astrological signs of the coming disaster CometOfDoom trope -- rather than simply keying the Mythal to go into active mode at regular intervals, the elves that created it keyed it to the light of a periodally periodically returning and rather striking comet.comet, the King-Killer Star. There ''was'' an attempt by dragons to exploit this to stop the cycle once they figured out there was a connection, but their attempt to destroy the Star missed and grazed the moon instead[[note]]this is why there's a trail of asteroids following Toril's moon, and also why the inhabitants of said moon are ''very'' suspicious of outsiders[[/note]], and by the time the next opportunity rolled around dragon civilization was too fragmented to repeat the attempt.


* ''{{Manga/Berserk}}'''s Eclipse, which goes down every 216 years, marks the birth of a new member of the [[DemonLordsAndArchDevils Godhand]], which involves the sacrifice of a whole lot of people, and the gathering of every demon in the ''Berserk'' universe for a great feast. The most recent occurrence of this happens at the end of the anime when [[spoiler: Griffith sacrifices the Band of the Hawk to become Femto, the Godhand's fifth member]].

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* ''{{Manga/Berserk}}'''s ''Manga/{{Berserk}}'''s Eclipse, which goes down every 216 years, marks the birth of a new member of the [[DemonLordsAndArchDevils Godhand]], which involves the sacrifice of a whole lot of people, and the gathering of every demon in the ''Berserk'' universe for a great feast. The most recent occurrence of this happens at the end of the anime when [[spoiler: Griffith sacrifices the Band of the Hawk to become Femto, the Godhand's fifth member]].



* A major theme of ''{{Manga/Uzumaki}}'' is the seemingly endless repetition of the town's cycle of reconstruction followed by [[BuffySpeak spiralization]]. Kirie's father discusses the gradual appearance of broad-scale patterns in an early chapter, but it doesn't become obvious that what's happening in the town is just another repetition of an endless pattern [[spoiler:until it's far too late]].

to:

* A major theme of ''{{Manga/Uzumaki}}'' ''Manga/{{Uzumaki}}'' is the seemingly endless repetition of the town's cycle of reconstruction followed by [[BuffySpeak spiralization]]. Kirie's father discusses the gradual appearance of broad-scale patterns in an early chapter, but it doesn't become obvious that what's happening in the town is just another repetition of an endless pattern [[spoiler:until it's far too late]].



** As it turned out, the [[Myth/NorseMythology Cervidian Pantheons and the 'Nine Realms']] are in thrall of one, called the '[[{{Gotterdammerung}} Ragnarok Cycle]]', [[spoiler:which at some point became subverted and manipulated by a cabal of [[GodOfEvil fallen]] [[JerkassGods deities]] called '[[{{CaptainErsatz}} The Shadowed Ones']]]]. Breaking this Cycle becomes central to the 'Final Ragnarok' StoryArc.

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** As it turned out, the [[Myth/NorseMythology Cervidian Pantheons and the 'Nine Realms']] are in thrall of one, called the '[[{{Gotterdammerung}} Ragnarok Cycle]]', [[spoiler:which at some point became subverted and manipulated by a cabal of [[GodOfEvil fallen]] [[JerkassGods deities]] called '[[{{CaptainErsatz}} '[[CaptainErsatz The Shadowed Ones']]]].Ones]]']]. Breaking this Cycle becomes central to the 'Final Ragnarok' StoryArc.



* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons''

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* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons''''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'':



* The ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' galaxy seems forever doomed to be ruled by a seemingly invincible empire, have it [[{{Gotterdammerung}} suffer a self-inflicted catastrophe]] which [[VestigialEmpire shrinks it into a shadow of its former self]], and have the leftovers of that time period stick around to menace the galaxy's new caretakers. It happened with the Necrontyr, then the Eldar, then humanity's first empire, and the "modern" timeline depicts this happening to the Imperium of Man.

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* The ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000'' galaxy seems forever doomed to be ruled by a seemingly invincible empire, have it [[{{Gotterdammerung}} suffer a self-inflicted catastrophe]] which [[VestigialEmpire shrinks it into a shadow of its former self]], and have the leftovers of that time period stick around to menace the galaxy's new caretakers. It happened with the Necrontyr, then the Eldar, then humanity's first empire, and the "modern" timeline depicts this happening to the Imperium of Man.



* In ''Videogame/DarkSouls'', the whole point is to break the Vicious Cycle: the Age of Fire is ending, and the Age of Dark is coming, but the Age of Fire can be extended by having a chosen undead retrieve souls of great power, prove themselves worthy, and link the First Flame as tinder to keep it burning. Gwyn, the Lord of Cinder, linked it first, and all other chosen undead seek to follow in his footsteps.
** In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn that the world have been stuck in a continuous cycle since the events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''. Kingdoms and Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, and begins slaying the inhabitants of the lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].

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* In ''Videogame/DarkSouls'', ''VideoGame/DarkSouls'', the whole point is to break the Vicious Cycle: the Age of Fire is ending, and the Age of Dark is coming, but the Age of Fire can be extended by having a chosen undead retrieve souls of great power, prove themselves worthy, and link the First Flame as tinder to keep it burning. Gwyn, the Lord of Cinder, linked it first, and all other chosen undead seek to follow in his footsteps.
** In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn that the world have has been stuck in a continuous cycle since the events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''.''VideoGame/DarkSoulsI''. Kingdoms and Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, appears, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, appears, and begins slaying the inhabitants of the lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].



* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''

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* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'':



* ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}''

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* ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}''''Franchise/TouhouProject'':



[[folder:Web Comics]]

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[[folder:Web Comics]][[folder:Webcomics]]


* In ''Anime/MaiHime'', the "[=HiME=] Carnival" occurs every 300 years, and failure to comply would result in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt. There is a subversion, as it is not Mai herself who ends the cycle, but rather [[spoiler:her predecessor, Mashiro]].


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* In ''Anime/MyHime'', the "[=HiME=] Carnival" occurs every 300 years, and failure to comply would result in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt. There is a subversion, as it is not Mai herself who ends the cycle, but rather [[spoiler:her predecessor, Mashiro]].


RegularlyScheduledEvil is a special case of this. Not to be confused with CycleOfRevenge (though such a cycle is often called this, and with good reason). Also not with the episode of WebAnimation/HappyTreeFriends which features a [[{{Pun}} bike.]]

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RegularlyScheduledEvil is a special case of this. Not to be confused with CycleOfRevenge (though such a cycle is often called this, and with good reason). Also not with the episode of WebAnimation/HappyTreeFriends which features a [[{{Pun}} bike.]]
reason).


* ''VideoGame/Centipede1998'': Every hundred years, the bug swarms emerge and the Centipede awakens. PlayedForLaughs in the ending, when the narrator says "you should see what happens every ''thousand'' years".

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* ''VideoGame/Centipede1998'': Every hundred years, the bug swarms emerge and the Queen Centipede awakens. PlayedForLaughs in the ending, when the narrator says "you should see what happens every ''thousand'' years".

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* ''VideoGame/Centipede1998'': Every hundred years, the bug swarms emerge and the Centipede awakens. PlayedForLaughs in the ending, when the narrator says "you should see what happens every ''thousand'' years".
-->Every hundred years, they try to overtake our world, and we always ''think'' we've destroyed them. The legend also has it that every hundred years... we're wrong.


* In ''Dark Souls''' spiritual sibling, ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'', a vicious cycle known as [[TheNightThatNeverEnds The Night of The Hunt]] plagues the city of Yharnam with a lycanthropic affliction known as [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent "the Scourge of Beasts"]] and [[HunterOfMonsters the Hunters]] stalk the streets. It's gotten to the point that it's implied by some NPC Yharnamites that The Night of The Hunt has become a part of their everynight routine, and what's worse is that this cycle is still implied to be a considerable improvement compared to how things used to be in the past, with two precursor civilizations, Loran and Pthumeru, having been wiped out by earlier scourge outbreaks. And if you think that ''you'' are going to break the cycle, think again: If you accept [[OldMaster Gehrman's]] offer to free you from the night, you'll leave all of its dreams and nightmares behind to greet the sunrise of the next day, but while this is arguably the happiest ending for your Hunter, it's also just the end of one cycle and the start of the next. Should you refuse Gehrman's offer, you'll instead be forced to take his place as the host of the Hunter's Dream and guide future Hunters of coming Nights. And should you unlock the secret ending [[spoiler:you'll turn into an infant [[EldritchAbomination Great One]], and while this concievably puts you into a position to break the cycle there's still the fact of the matter that the source of the last Scourge of Beasts happened to be an infant Great One, and considering that you've hunted down your fair share of Great Ones during the course of the Night, you may just have put yourself into a position where future Hunters will be gunning for ''you'' during future Nights of the Hunt.]]

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* In ''Dark Souls''' spiritual sibling, ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'', a vicious cycle known as [[TheNightThatNeverEnds The the Night of The the Hunt]] plagues the city of Yharnam with a lycanthropic affliction known as [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent "the Scourge of Beasts"]] and [[HunterOfMonsters the Hunters]] stalk the streets. It's gotten to the point that it's implied by some NPC Yharnamites that The the Night of The the Hunt has become a part of their everynight routine, and what's worse is that this cycle is still implied to be a considerable improvement compared to how things used to be in the past, with two precursor civilizations, Loran and Pthumeru, having been wiped out by earlier scourge outbreaks. And if you think that ''you'' are going to break the cycle, think again: If you accept [[OldMaster Gehrman's]] offer to free you from the night, you'll leave all of its dreams and nightmares behind to greet the sunrise of the next day, but while this is arguably the happiest ending for your Hunter, it's also just the end of one cycle and the start of the next. Should you refuse Gehrman's offer, you'll instead be forced to take his place as the host of the Hunter's Dream and guide future Hunters of coming Nights. And should you unlock the secret ending [[spoiler:you'll turn into an infant [[EldritchAbomination Great One]], and while this concievably conceivably puts you into a position to break the cycle cycle, there's still the fact of the matter that the source of the last Scourge of Beasts happened to be an infant Great One, and considering that you've hunted down your fair share of Great Ones during the course of the Night, you may just have put yourself into a position where future Hunters will be gunning for ''you'' during future Nights of the Hunt.]]


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* In ''Anime/MaiHime'', the "[=HiME=] Carnival" occurs every 300 years, and failure to comply would result in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt. There is a subversion, as it is not Mai herself who ends the cycle, but rather [[spoiler:her predecessor, Mashiro]].
* Implied in ''Anime/WolfsRain'' though not stated in so many words.



* In ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', every 5,000 years, the [[SpaceDoesNotWorkThatWay Makyo Star]] comes [[ConvenientlyClosePlanet close in axis to Earth]], so if you have an [[CompleteImmortality immortal]] [[SealedEvilInACan antagonist trapped in the Dead Zone]], such as [[OverlordJr Garlic Jr.]], prepare to [[WeMeetAgain meet him again]]! [[spoiler: At the end, Gohan [[EarthShatteringKaboom blows up the star]], ending the cycle.]]



* ''Anime/ThisUglyYetBeautifulWorld'': the goddess of death and destruction comes back to cause yet another mass extinction on Earth.
* ''Manga/ZatchBell'': The battle to become Mamodo King occurs once every 1,000 years. As it is shown, the participants frequently have their lives ruined to some degree as a result, and a ''lot'' of innocent people get caught up in it. [[spoiler:Subverted at the end, when the damage done is repaired and the participants are given the choice to have their memories of what happened removed.]]
* ''Anime/QueenMillennia'': If the title isn't enough indication, for every 1,000 year period, a woman from the planet La-Metal is sent to secretly rule over the Earth and lead the underground organization that secretly controls the entire planet.



* In ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', every 5,000 years, the [[SpaceDoesNotWorkThatWay Makyo Star]] comes [[ConvenientlyClosePlanet close in axis to Earth]], so if you have an [[CompleteImmortality immortal]] [[SealedEvilInACan antagonist trapped in the Dead Zone]], such as [[OverlordJr Garlic Jr.]], prepare to [[WeMeetAgain meet him again]]! [[spoiler: At the end, Gohan [[EarthShatteringKaboom blows up the star]], ending the cycle.]]

to:

* In ''Anime/DragonBallZ'', ''Anime/MaiHime'', the "[=HiME=] Carnival" occurs every 5,000 300 years, and failure to comply would result in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt. There is a subversion, as it is not Mai herself who ends the [[SpaceDoesNotWorkThatWay Makyo Star]] comes [[ConvenientlyClosePlanet close in axis to Earth]], so if you have an [[CompleteImmortality immortal]] [[SealedEvilInACan antagonist trapped in the Dead Zone]], such as [[OverlordJr Garlic Jr.]], prepare to [[WeMeetAgain meet him again]]! [[spoiler: At the end, Gohan [[EarthShatteringKaboom blows up the star]], ending the cycle.]]cycle, but rather [[spoiler:her predecessor, Mashiro]].



* A major theme of ''{{Manga/Uzumaki}}'' is the seemingly endless repetition of the town's cycle of reconstruction followed by [[BuffySpeak spiralization]]. Kirie's father discusses the gradual appearance of broad-scale patterns in an early chapter, but it doesn't become obvious that what's happening in the town is just another repetition of an endless pattern [[spoiler:until it's far too late]].



* ''Anime/QueenMillennia'': If the title isn't enough indication, for every 1,000 year period, a woman from the planet La-Metal is sent to secretly rule over the Earth and lead the underground organization that secretly controls the entire planet.



* ''Anime/ThisUglyYetBeautifulWorld'': the goddess of death and destruction comes back to cause yet another mass extinction on Earth.
* A major theme of ''{{Manga/Uzumaki}}'' is the seemingly endless repetition of the town's cycle of reconstruction followed by [[BuffySpeak spiralization]]. Kirie's father discusses the gradual appearance of broad-scale patterns in an early chapter, but it doesn't become obvious that what's happening in the town is just another repetition of an endless pattern [[spoiler:until it's far too late]].
* Implied in ''Anime/WolfsRain'' though not stated in so many words.
* ''Manga/ZatchBell'': The battle to become Mamodo King occurs once every 1,000 years. As it is shown, the participants frequently have their lives ruined to some degree as a result, and a ''lot'' of innocent people get caught up in it. [[spoiler:Subverted at the end, when the damage done is repaired and the participants are given the choice to have their memories of what happened removed.]]



* After multiple storylines in ''ComicBook/TheMightyThor'' involving someone attempting to trigger Ragnarök, it was established that Ragnarök is a cycle that has occurred multiple times in Asgard's past.



* After multiple storylines in ''ComicBook/TheMightyThor'' involving someone attempting to trigger Ragnarök, it was established that Ragnarök is a cycle that has occurred multiple times in Asgard's past.



* In ''Franchise/TheMatrix'' trilogy, the Machines destroy Zion and (with the help of The One) reboot the Matrix every 100 years, to prevent the Zion "anomaly" from expanding uncontrollably. Neo is the first One to refuse to participate in the reboot, and later strikes a peace agreement with the Machines, saving Zion and ending the war.



* ''Film/{{Versus}}'': [[spoiler:Prisoner, The Man, The Girl and the Yakuza are parties to a never-ending battle raging on through untold centuries. The main three players (The Man, Prisoner, The Girl) don't change in essence, but may change sides (the Hero may be the Villain next time and vice-versa); in all cases, the duel repeats endlessly.]]

to:

* ''Film/{{Versus}}'': [[spoiler:Prisoner, In ''Franchise/TheMatrix'' trilogy, the Machines destroy Zion and (with the help of The Man, The Girl One) reboot the Matrix every 100 years, to prevent the Zion "anomaly" from expanding uncontrollably. Neo is the first One to refuse to participate in the reboot, and later strikes a peace agreement with the Yakuza are parties to a never-ending battle raging on through untold centuries. The main three players (The Man, Prisoner, The Girl) don't change in essence, but may change sides (the Hero may be Machines, saving Zion and ending the Villain next time and vice-versa); in all cases, the duel repeats endlessly.]]war.



* ''Film/{{Versus}}'': [[spoiler:Prisoner, The Man, The Girl and the Yakuza are parties to a never-ending battle raging on through untold centuries. The main three players (The Man, Prisoner, The Girl) don't change in essence, but may change sides (the Hero may be the Villain next time and vice-versa); in all cases, the duel repeats endlessly.]]



* ''Literature/TheLordOfTheIsles'' series by Creator/DavidDrake. The powers are building to a thousand-year peak. Ordinary wizards find themselves with out of control powers that brought down the kingdom during the last peak. In its current shattered state another such error will destroy civilization.
* In Creator/StephenBaxter's novel, ''Literature/ManifoldSpace'', the Galaxy works on a so-called "Reboot cycle", where life, intelligence and civilizations appear practically ''everywhere'' in some form (that is, even as lichen colonies on the surface of stars, or giant crabs living of rogue planets). These civilizations advance, and begin a bubble-expansion at increasing speed. From there, the bubbles either collide resulting in omnipresent wars, or collapse in on themselves when they hit the lightspeed barrier and can no longer sustain the expansion. These events lead to massive technological backsteps and extinction events (which is why everyone is [[MohsScaleOfSciFiHardness bound by lightspeed]]; nobody has time to get really ''smart''). In addition to this, each cycle ends with the Galaxy getting sterilized by colliding neutron stars releasing ''massive'' amounts of radiation, blasting everything back to pondscum.
** The protagonists actually ''fail'' to prevent the current cycle from completing, but succeed in buying some time for the ''next'' iteration of the cycle by building a massive solar sail that would stop a neutron star collision.

to:

* ''Literature/TheLordOfTheIsles'' series by Creator/DavidDrake. The powers In J.V. Jones's "Cavern of Black Ice," [[spoiler: the Endlords, chaotic beings seeking to dissolve the very universe into a hell of anarchy, are building to locked in a thousand-year peak. Ordinary wizards find themselves with out of dimensional prison. Every 1,000 years someone is born who, if they lose control powers that brought down of their mind for a moment, can unlock the kingdom during the last peak. In its current shattered state another such error will destroy civilization.
* In Creator/StephenBaxter's novel, ''Literature/ManifoldSpace'', the Galaxy works on a so-called "Reboot cycle", where life, intelligence and civilizations appear practically ''everywhere'' in some form (that is, even as lichen colonies on the surface of stars, or giant crabs living of rogue planets). These civilizations advance, and begin a bubble-expansion at increasing speed. From there, the bubbles either collide resulting in omnipresent wars, or collapse in on themselves when
prison, unless they hit do it in the lightspeed barrier and can no eponymous cavern. The longer sustain they resist the expansion. These events lead temptation to massive technological backsteps lose control, the more their body fails, until they die and extinction events (which is why everyone is [[MohsScaleOfSciFiHardness bound by lightspeed]]; nobody has time to get really ''smart''). In addition to this, each cycle ends with in doing so unlock the Galaxy getting sterilized by colliding neutron stars releasing ''massive'' amounts of radiation, blasting everything back to pondscum.
** The protagonists actually ''fail'' to prevent the current cycle from completing, but succeed in buying some time for the ''next'' iteration of the cycle by building a massive solar sail that would stop a neutron star collision.
prison anyway.]]



* Literature/{{Discworld}}'s Death's master, Azrael, references this. [[AC:"I remember when all this shall be again."]]
* Politics in ''Literature/{{Dragaera}}'' are dominated by the Cycle, a predictable sequence by which each of seventeen Dragaeran Houses takes a turn governing the Empire. Each [[PlanetOfHats House's]] members have strengths that allow it to supplant the previous one, and weaknesses which will eventually allow its successor to claim the Imperial throne in turn.
* ''Literature/DragonridersOfPern'': The Red Star approaches Pern every 200 years and rains hungry Thread on civilization. The few occasions when it does not do this are termed Long Intervals and end up being an important clue to saving Pern from thread forever.



* In the ''[[Literature/TheWheelOfTime Wheel of Time]]'' series, the eponymous Wheel is a metaphor for seven distinct ages, each of which ends after several thousand years. The last (Second) Age ended in the Breaking of the World, and the Third Age is prophesied to end similarly; presumably this happens every age. More sinisterly, [[TheDragon Ishamael]] appears to have been meddling on a smaller scale this Age -- about a thousand years after the Breaking, he sent the [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Trollocs]] to ravage the world, and another thousand years later he triggered the "War of the Hundred Years" by preventing [[KingArthur Artur Hawkwing]] from having a living heir. (It looks as if his intent was to [[MedievalStasis keep the technology level down]].)
* In ''Literature/TheMoteInGodsEye'', [[spoiler: The Moties' biology means they must have children [[ExplosiveBreeder frequently]] [[MateOrDie or die]], this trapped them in a never ending cycle where overpopulation inevitably resulted in a world destroying war blasting them back to the stone age]]
** One of their enduring mythological figures is "Crazy Eddie", who is reborn (figuratively, at least) time and time again, each time attempting to bring the cycle to an end. Sometimes he's almost successful (in the sense "it would have worked but for ..."), but he's ''always'' crazy (and the "but for ..." is usually some fundamental physical constant of the universe, or at least of Motie psychology).
* In J.V. Jones's "Cavern of Black Ice," [[spoiler: the Endlords, chaotic beings seeking to dissolve the very universe into a hell of anarchy, are locked in a dimensional prison. Every 1,000 years someone is born who, if they lose control of their mind for a moment, can unlock the prison, unless they do it in the eponymous cavern. The longer they resist the temptation to lose control, the more their body fails, until they die and in doing so unlock the prison anyway.]]
* Politics in ''Literature/{{Dragaera}}'' are dominated by the Cycle, a predictable sequence by which each of seventeen Dragaeran Houses takes a turn governing the Empire. Each [[PlanetOfHats House's]] members have strengths that allow it to supplant the previous one, and weaknesses which will eventually allow its successor to claim the Imperial throne in turn.
* Literature/{{Discworld}}'s Death's master, Azrael, references this. [[AC:"I remember when all this shall be again."]]



* ''Literature/DragonridersOfPern'': The Red Star approaches Pern every 200 years and rains hungry Thread on civilization. The few occasions when it does not do this are termed Long Intervals and end up being an important clue to saving Pern from thread forever.
* ''Literature/MemorySorrowAndThorn'': The [[CometOfDoom Conqueror Star]] is a long-period comet (at least 500 years, although it seems to vary) whose coming universally heralds the end of an empire. The story opens at the beginning of a unique cycle in which the comet will appear in three consecutive years. This is, of course, the time that the SealedEvilInACan [[BigBad Storm King]] chooses to make his return.
* In a ''Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse'' novel there is a planet called Ennth. Because of the moon's odd orbit, every eight years the planet and moon get so close together that their atmospheres collide, causing groundquakes, tidal waves, and volcanic eruptions, destroying everything on the planet. The people of said planet usually get away and live on colonies until the disasters pass, but there are always casualties. Once done, they move back in and rebuild until the next cycle.

to:

* ''Literature/DragonridersOfPern'': ''Literature/TheLordOfTheIsles'' series by Creator/DavidDrake. The Red Star approaches Pern every 200 years and rains hungry Thread on civilization. The few occasions when it does not do this powers are termed Long Intervals and end up being an important clue building to saving Pern from thread forever.
* ''Literature/MemorySorrowAndThorn'': The [[CometOfDoom Conqueror Star]] is
a long-period comet (at least 500 years, although it seems to vary) whose coming universally heralds thousand-year peak. Ordinary wizards find themselves with out of control powers that brought down the end of an empire. The story opens at kingdom during the beginning of a unique cycle in which the comet last peak. In its current shattered state another such error will appear in three consecutive years. This is, of course, the time that the SealedEvilInACan [[BigBad Storm King]] chooses to make his return.
* In a ''Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse'' novel there is a planet called Ennth. Because of the moon's odd orbit, every eight years the planet and moon get so close together that their atmospheres collide, causing groundquakes, tidal waves, and volcanic eruptions, destroying everything on the planet. The people of said planet usually get away and live on colonies until the disasters pass, but there are always casualties. Once done, they move back in and rebuild until the next cycle.
destroy civilization.



* In Creator/StephenBaxter's novel, ''Literature/ManifoldSpace'', the Galaxy works on a so-called "Reboot cycle", where life, intelligence and civilizations appear practically ''everywhere'' in some form (that is, even as lichen colonies on the surface of stars, or giant crabs living of rogue planets). These civilizations advance, and begin a bubble-expansion at increasing speed. From there, the bubbles either collide resulting in omnipresent wars, or collapse in on themselves when they hit the lightspeed barrier and can no longer sustain the expansion. These events lead to massive technological backsteps and extinction events (which is why everyone is [[MohsScaleOfSciFiHardness bound by lightspeed]]; nobody has time to get really ''smart''). In addition to this, each cycle ends with the Galaxy getting sterilized by colliding neutron stars releasing ''massive'' amounts of radiation, blasting everything back to pondscum.
** The protagonists actually ''fail'' to prevent the current cycle from completing, but succeed in buying some time for the ''next'' iteration of the cycle by building a massive solar sail that would stop a neutron star collision.
* ''Literature/MemorySorrowAndThorn'': The [[CometOfDoom Conqueror Star]] is a long-period comet (at least 500 years, although it seems to vary) whose coming universally heralds the end of an empire. The story opens at the beginning of a unique cycle in which the comet will appear in three consecutive years. This is, of course, the time that the SealedEvilInACan [[BigBad Storm King]] chooses to make his return.
* In ''Literature/TheMoteInGodsEye'', [[spoiler: The Moties' biology means they must have children [[ExplosiveBreeder frequently]] [[MateOrDie or die]], this trapped them in a never ending cycle where overpopulation inevitably resulted in a world destroying war blasting them back to the stone age]]
** One of their enduring mythological figures is "Crazy Eddie", who is reborn (figuratively, at least) time and time again, each time attempting to bring the cycle to an end. Sometimes he's almost successful (in the sense "it would have worked but for ..."), but he's ''always'' crazy (and the "but for ..." is usually some fundamental physical constant of the universe, or at least of Motie psychology).
* In a ''Franchise/StarWarsExpandedUniverse'' novel there is a planet called Ennth. Because of the moon's odd orbit, every eight years the planet and moon get so close together that their atmospheres collide, causing groundquakes, tidal waves, and volcanic eruptions, destroying everything on the planet. The people of said planet usually get away and live on colonies until the disasters pass, but there are always casualties. Once done, they move back in and rebuild until the next cycle.
* In the ''[[Literature/TheWheelOfTime Wheel of Time]]'' series, the eponymous Wheel is a metaphor for seven distinct ages, each of which ends after several thousand years. The last (Second) Age ended in the Breaking of the World, and the Third Age is prophesied to end similarly; presumably this happens every age. More sinisterly, [[TheDragon Ishamael]] appears to have been meddling on a smaller scale this Age -- about a thousand years after the Breaking, he sent the [[AlwaysChaoticEvil Trollocs]] to ravage the world, and another thousand years later he triggered the "War of the Hundred Years" by preventing [[KingArthur Artur Hawkwing]] from having a living heir. (It looks as if his intent was to [[MedievalStasis keep the technology level down]].)



* In the ''TabletopGame/VillainsAndVigilantes'' adventure ''Devil's Domain'', every 666 years the Earth's dimension and Hell come close enough together for the Devil to create a bridge between them that will allow his demon horde to pour through.
* The Aurora in ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'''s Lorwyn and Shadowmoor settings, which changes one world to the other (and the minds of those within). It's eventually revealed to be a magically slowed down [[spoiler: day/night cycle. A side effect of it being slowed down is the transformation into a world epitomizing the light of day and the darkness of night, respectively]]



* The Aurora in ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'''s Lorwyn and Shadowmoor settings, which changes one world to the other (and the minds of those within). It's eventually revealed to be a magically slowed down [[spoiler: day/night cycle. A side effect of it being slowed down is the transformation into a world epitomizing the light of day and the darkness of night, respectively]]
* In the ''TabletopGame/VillainsAndVigilantes'' adventure ''Devil's Domain'', every 666 years the Earth's dimension and Hell come close enough together for the Devil to create a bridge between them that will allow his demon horde to pour through.
* The ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' galaxy seems forever doomed to be ruled by a seemingly invincible empire, have it [[{{Gotterdammerung}} suffer a self-inflicted catastrophe]] which [[VestigialEmpire shrinks it into a shadow of its former self]], and have the leftovers of that time period stick around to menace the galaxy's new caretakers. It happened with the Necrontyr, then the Eldar, then humanity's first empire, and the "modern" timeline depicts this happening to the Imperium of Man.



* The ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' galaxy seems forever doomed to be ruled by a seemingly invincible empire, have it [[{{Gotterdammerung}} suffer a self-inflicted catastrophe]] which [[VestigialEmpire shrinks it into a shadow of its former self]], and have the leftovers of that time period stick around to menace the galaxy's new caretakers. It happened with the Necrontyr, then the Eldar, then humanity's first empire, and the "modern" timeline depicts this happening to the Imperium of Man.



* In ''Dark Souls''' spiritual sibling, ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'', a vicious cycle known as [[TheNightThatNeverEnds The Night of The Hunt]] plagues the city of Yharnam with a lycanthropic affliction known as [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent "the Scourge of Beasts"]] and [[HunterOfMonsters the Hunters]] stalk the streets. It's gotten to the point that it's implied by some NPC Yharnamites that The Night of The Hunt has become a part of their everynight routine, and what's worse is that this cycle is still implied to be a considerable improvement compared to how things used to be in the past, with two precursor civilizations, Loran and Pthumeru, having been wiped out by earlier scourge outbreaks. And if you think that ''you'' are going to break the cycle, think again: If you accept [[OldMaster Gehrman's]] offer to free you from the night, you'll leave all of its dreams and nightmares behind to greet the sunrise of the next day, but while this is arguably the happiest ending for your Hunter, it's also just the end of one cycle and the start of the next. Should you refuse Gehrman's offer, you'll instead be forced to take his place as the host of the Hunter's Dream and guide future Hunters of coming Nights. And should you unlock the secret ending [[spoiler:you'll turn into an infant [[EldritchAbomination Great One]], and while this concievably puts you into a position to break the cycle there's still the fact of the matter that the source of the last Scourge of Beasts happened to be an infant Great One, and considering that you've hunted down your fair share of Great Ones during the course of the Night, you may just have put yourself into a position where future Hunters will be gunning for ''you'' during future Nights of the Hunt.]]



* The eponymous castle of the ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'' series of video games, as well as its lord, Count Dracula, reappears every 100 years [[ChaosArchitecture in a different form]]. In fact, one of the major plot points of ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'' is that Castlevania's latest appearance is ''way'' ahead of schedule.
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaIISimonsQuest'' revolves around the player having to revive Dracula ahead of schedule in order to kill him again, in order to break a curse he put on Simon Belmont for defeating him.
** And the there's ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaAriaOfSorrow'' and ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaDawnOfSorrow'', [[spoiler: where Dracula was finally killed for good. But apparently the world needs a Dark Lord, so now all sorts of lunatics are trying their damnedest to become the new Dracula.]]
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaPortraitOfRuin'' is another one that interrupts the vicious cycle. With the onset of World War II, [[spoiler: a squatter named Brauner used all the hatred and torment felt by those killed in the War to call forth Castlevania and usurp its power for his own misanthropic needs. Because of this, the Belmont Family isn't even allowed to touch the sacred Vampire Killer whip until its next ''scheduled'' appearance in 1999.]]
** According to the timeline (and taking officially non-canon games into account), there are [[VideoGame/Castlevania64 several]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaCircleOfTheMoon times]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaLegacyOfDarkness in the]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaOrderOfEcclesia 1800's]] where Dracula is resurrected only to almost immediately be kicked back to sleep by [[TheUnchosenOne some stranger who walked in off the street]].



* ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' is ''very'' big on this, given the emphasis on the OrderVersusChaos setting, the instability of Neutrality, and the constant reminder that HumansAreFlawed. Particular examples include the Conception in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne'', the Schwartzwelt in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'', and the constant rise and fall of several of the series' gods. It's a bitter reminder that OrderVersusChaos cannot be ''anything'' except a ForeverWar.
** It's also a major problem for the [[TrueNeutral Neutral]] alignment, which vows to protect the potential of mankind, as well as freedom and self-empowerment... all of which brought the EndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt in the first place, although the natural tendency for belief to unknowingly fuel civilization-crushing supernatural entities doesn't exactly help.
** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV'' finally breaks down and explains the system. [[spoiler: Any victory is inherently temporary because humans will always seek to fix the problems of Law or Chaos. If the world submits to God, then the descendants of the Chosen will want freedom someday; if the world falls into Chaos, then eventually people will build an ordered society, which will lead to religion and in turn to YHVH. A Neutral victory is possible, but that's inherently temporary too; at some point that society will fail as well and either turn to Order or Chaos. The only possible eternal victory is to reduce the world to Nothingness, which really isn't a solution.]]
* Dark Gaia of ''VideoGame/SonicUnleashed'' gathers energy over millions of years, then rises and destroys the planet. This is counterbalanced by Light Gaia, who puts it all back together. Dr. Eggman's attempt to harness the energy of Dark Gaia ends up causing a smaller scale version of this in that the planet is split into floating continents, due to Dark Gaia not being at full strength thanks to the early awakening.
* In the ''VideoGame/PhantasyStar'' series, [[EldritchAbomination Dark Force]] attacks the planets of the Algol system every 1,000 years. In ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIV'', this is revealed to be because [[spoiler:an even ''worse'' entity, the Profound Darkness, is sealed behind the solar system itself, and Dark Force, the avatar of said entity, is attempting to free it]]. Not only that, [[spoiler:the destruction of Parma has weakened the seal on the Profound Darkness, so now there are ''three'' Dark Forces working simultaneously to release it.]]

to:

* ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' is ''very'' big on this, given In ''Videogame/DarkSouls'', the emphasis on whole point is to break the OrderVersusChaos setting, Vicious Cycle: the instability Age of Neutrality, Fire is ending, and the constant reminder Age of Dark is coming, but the Age of Fire can be extended by having a chosen undead retrieve souls of great power, prove themselves worthy, and link the First Flame as tinder to keep it burning. Gwyn, the Lord of Cinder, linked it first, and all other chosen undead seek to follow in his footsteps.
** In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn
that HumansAreFlawed. Particular examples include the Conception world have been stuck in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne'', a continuous cycle since the Schwartzwelt in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'', events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''. Kingdoms and the constant Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, and fall of several begins slaying the inhabitants of the series' gods. lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].
*** ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsIII'' takes this to its logical conclusion; artificially extending the Age of Fire by linking the First Flame is having disastrous consequences, to the point that more and more chosen undead are failing to successfully link the First Flame and extend the Age further.
It's a bitter reminder gotten so bad that OrderVersusChaos cannot be ''anything'' except a ForeverWar.
** It's also a major problem for the [[TrueNeutral Neutral]] alignment, which vows
five ''previous'' champions are revived to protect the potential of mankind, as well as freedom try one last time to do it, and self-empowerment... all of which brought the EndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt they ''refuse'', resulting in the first place, although all-but-doomed-to-fail attempt to revive one of the natural tendency for belief unworthy undead as an Ashen champion to unknowingly fuel civilization-crushing supernatural entities doesn't exactly help.
** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV'' finally breaks
hunt down the five champions and explains try to link the system. First Flame with that power. The further you progress into the game, the more it becomes painfully aware that trying to break the Vicious Cycle is having ''terrible'' consequences, including the sun going out, people being unable to die ''without'' being undead, monstrous creatures of ash appearing, and [[spoiler: Any victory is inherently temporary because humans will always seek to fix the problems of Law or Chaos. If the world submits to God, then the descendants of the Chosen will want freedom someday; Dark Soul appearing and going completely berserk]]. Even if the world falls into Chaos, then eventually people will build an ordered society, which will lead Ashen Champion manages to religion succeed and in turn to YHVH. A Neutral victory is possible, but that's inherently temporary too; link the First Flame at some point the end, [[spoiler: it's clear that society will fail as well and either turn to Order or Chaos. The only possible eternal victory is to reduce the world to Nothingness, which really First Flame is dying out anyway, as the Ashen Champion isn't a solution.even hurt by the weak flames flickering over their body.]]
* *** The DLC ''Ashes of Ariandel'' and ''The Ringed City'' make it clear that extending the Age of Fire is [[spoiler: disastrous. If the Age of Fire is extended too long, the world will begin to literally collapse, with locations from throughout time slowly contracting into a single point, the eponymous Ringed City. Beyond that, the world is nothing but a wasteland, with even the undead, who cannot die, dying out, the Dark Gaia Soul running rampant, and reality literally starting to break down.]] In other words, the Vicious Cycle between the Age of ''VideoGame/SonicUnleashed'' gathers energy over millions Fire and the Age of Dark ''must'' continue, ''or else''.
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' is built on the Vicious Cycle between mages and the templars meant to keep them in check. To keep them in check, the templars lock mages away in towers and generally treat them as less than human beings. To break this oppression mages turn to BloodMagic. This causes the templars to become more oppressive and by the end of the game both have reached the breaking point and the world is about ready to go to war between the mages and templars. Which side exactly started the cycle is never answered and aids the game's GreyAndGrayMorality.
* This is a major plot point in ''VideoGame/DragonsDogma''. [[spoiler:Every several hundred
years, the Seneschal unleashes the Dragon, whose goal is to both bring the end of days, and to create an Arisen that has the ability to grow strong enough to face the Dragon. If the Arisen fails, the Seneschal supposedly recreates the world and begins anew. If the Arisen succeeds and the Dragon is killed, the Arisen is given the Godsbane sword and slays the Seneschal with it, effectively becoming the new Seneschal who then rises creates their own Dragon, and the cycle begins anew]]. However, [[spoiler:when your Arisen kills the Seneschal, they instead choose to [[DrivenToSuicide turn the Godsbane on themselves]] in an effort to finally break the cycle for good... which still doesn't work as a NewGamePlus playthrough reveals.]]
* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** In the series' lore, the Kamal, an [[{{Wutai}} Akaviri]] race of "snow demons" are engaged in this. They are said to [[HumanPopsicle freeze every winter]] and thaw every spring, at which point they attack the Tang Mo ("monkey folk"). The Tang Mo have always successfully defended themselves against this attack. The one time the Kamal broke this cycle was to attack Tamriel (the continent where all of the games in the series to date have taken place) but were again defeated.
** As revealed in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, in a time before recorded history, Jyggalag, the [[OurGodsAreDifferent Daedric Prince]] of [[ControlFreak Order]] grew too powerful, making the other Daedric Princes fearful and jealous of him. They came together and cursed him, trapping in the form of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of [[MadGod Madness]]. However, at the end of every Era, he is allowed to return to his true form in an event known as the Greymarch. During this time, he retakes
and destroys the planet. This is counterbalanced by Light Gaia, who puts it all back together. Dr. Eggman's attempt Shivering Isles, Sheogorath's realm, only to harness return to the energy form of Dark Gaia ends up causing a smaller scale version Sheogorath at the end. The plot of ''Shivering Isles'' is essentially Jygglag finding a way to escape this in EternalRecurrence...
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' reveals
that the planet is split into floating continents, due to Dark Gaia not being at full strength thanks to universe itself runs in these, known as "kalpas", with [[BeastOfTheApocalypse Alduin]] eating the early awakening.
* In the ''VideoGame/PhantasyStar'' series, [[EldritchAbomination Dark Force]] attacks the planets of the Algol system
world and [[TopGod Akatosh]] renewing it every 1,000 few thousand years. In ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIV'', this is revealed to be because [[spoiler:an even ''worse'' entity, the Profound Darkness, is sealed behind the solar system itself, and Dark Force, the avatar of said entity, is attempting to free it]]. Not only that, current ''kalpa'', [[spoiler:the destruction of Parma has weakened ancient Nords disrupted the seal on cycle by using an Elder Scroll to cast Alduin several thousand years forward in time]]. It's implied that Alduin himself disrupted the Profound Darkness, so now cycle, by striking before it was time and (in the first Dragon Wars) by enslaving and dominating humanity instead of just destroying the place like he's supposed to. At the end of the main quest, [[spoiler: the Dragonborn does not absorb Alduin's soul like he/she does other dragons. It is implied that Alduin will return to fulfill his duty as World Eater when the proper time comes]].
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Enderal}} Enderal: The Shards of Order]]'', a total conversion for Skyrim and a sequel to ''VideoGame/{{Nehrim}}'' mentioned above, reveals that the events of Nehrim are part of a much larger and much more expansive cycle of total annihilation of all sentient life in the world, which of course the player is tasked to prevent. [[spoiler:Then it turns out that trying to prevent the cycle is actually part of the grand scheme that makes it happen; at ''best'' the player can postpone it with the hopes of it being stopped in the future]].
* The Grail War in ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' occurs every 60 years, when
there are ''three'' Dark Forces working simultaneously is enough magical energy in Fuyuki to release it.activate the Grail. The system was arranged many years ago by the three mage families in order to determine the Grail's possession. The thing is, the war was supposed to have ended on [[LightNovel/FateZero the fourth iteration]], but it's eventually revealed that the process merely sped up, allowing the next Grail War to start fifty years early. [[spoiler:The Grail War system was eventually dismantled in the Heaven's Feel route.]]



** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' has Sin, whose cycle is a little flexible - when destroyed, he rises again in a few years, but the amount of time he's active depends on how long it takes a summoner to perform the "Final Summoning" and defeat him. [[spoiler:Near the end of the game, the heroes discover that the method of defeating Sin is what perpetuates the cycle - the "Final Aeon" called by the Final Summoning becomes the next Sin. This is because Yu Yevon, the local deity, uses Sin as his vehicle; destroying him breaks the cycle for good.]]
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' has a similar situation, although it isn't clear if it's quite as regularly timed as most others.
** It's supposed to be. The Chosen is sent on his/her journey to supposedly reawaken the sleeping Goddess; doing so will revive the land and banish the evil Desians. What it's really doing is controlling the distribution of the remaining mana and preventing anyone's technology from getting to the point of large-scale, advanced war. It's supposed to happen at a fairly regular rate, but thanks to the Renegades killing a Chosen before the journey was completed, Tethe'alla's technology was allowed to get far more advanced than it should have.
** That world has a larger scale vicious cycle going as well. First, magitechnology is developed. Then, they develop a [[WaveMotionGun Mana Cannon]]. Use of the cannon uses up so much mana that supplies run low, chaos ensues, war escalates due to the combination of scarce resources and advanced weaponry, and humanity is thrust back to the dark ages, often with the help of an external force (usually malicious angels, although at least one meteor). Then, after a thousand years or two, people exploring ruins begin finding out about this neat thing called "magitechnology"...
** The game also depicts racism as a case of this. Most half-elves hate humans because of the discrimination they suffer, and a lot of them end up joining the evil Desians to either escape it or get some revenge. Of course, most humans hate half-elves ''because'' of the atrocities the Desians commit against humans (in a nutshell, they're basically [[ThoseWackyNazis magical Nazis]]), so in the end both sides are responsible for driving the endless cycle of hate. [[TheCasanova Zelos]] of all people gives some [[HiddenDepths uncharacteristic insight]] when he points out how Genis and Raine have always been good to him and he genuinely does like them, but he's still having trouble shaking his discriminatory views of half-elves because of the way he was raised and the things he's seen the Desians do:
---> '''Lloyd:''' What, you going to discriminate against them too?
---> '''Zelos:''' ...I'm sure it sounds like that, but you've got to understand, I've been educated this way since birth. "Half-elves are stupid, savage, filthy creatures." Don't get mad. I'm just stating the common view. Well, I haven't been around them very long yet, but I can tell they're good people, not any different from us. Knowing that, but still being unable to shake the feelings, is what discrimination is all about, though.
* The latest story intel on the ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft}}'' series (mainly the "''Dark Templar''" book trilogy) posits that the [[{{Precursors}} Xel'Naga]] are not ''merely'' a superadvanced civilization whose experiments with creating the Zerg and Protoss failed miserably leading to their extinction. Rather, both the Protoss and Zerg are exactly what they were required to be, and in time the two species would have come together to create the new iteration of the (essentially godlike, "star-forging") Xel'Naga, as part of a cosmic cycle stretching back to the dawn of time. The current cycle never came to completion as intended, however, because ''[[EldritchAbomination someone]]'' interfered with the Zerg's genetic programming, making them [[PlanetLooters savage and all-consuming]], as a first step to breaking the cycle and ending the Universe.
** Worse! The ''someone'' who interfered was a fallen Xelnaga who began twisting the cycle to create more ''fallen'' Xelnaga(anything ''but'' Xelnaga in the Protoss Preservers' minds) by combining Zerg and Protoss DNA.
* The eponymous castle of the ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'' series of video games, as well as its lord, Count Dracula, reappears every 100 years [[ChaosArchitecture in a different form]]. In fact, one of the major plot points of ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'' is that Castlevania's latest appearance is ''way'' ahead of schedule.
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaIISimonsQuest'' revolves around the player having to revive Dracula ahead of schedule in order to kill him again, in order to break a curse he put on Simon Belmont for defeating him.
** And the there's ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaAriaOfSorrow'' and ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaDawnOfSorrow'', [[spoiler: where Dracula was finally killed for good. But apparently the world needs a Dark Lord, so now all sorts of lunatics are trying their damnedest to become the new Dracula.]]
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaPortraitOfRuin'' is another one that interrupts the vicious cycle. With the onset of World War II, [[spoiler: a squatter named Brauner used all the hatred and torment felt by those killed in the War to call forth Castlevania and usurp its power for his own misanthropic needs. Because of this, the Belmont Family isn't even allowed to touch the sacred Vampire Killer whip until its next ''scheduled'' appearance in 1999.]]
** According to the timeline (and taking officially non-canon games into account), there are [[VideoGame/Castlevania64 several]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaCircleOfTheMoon times]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaLegacyOfDarkness in the]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaOrderOfEcclesia 1800's]] where Dracula is resurrected only to almost immediately be kicked back to sleep by [[TheUnchosenOne some stranger who walked in off the street]].

to:

** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyX'' has Sin, whose cycle is a little flexible - -- when destroyed, he rises again in a few years, but the amount of time he's active depends on how long it takes a summoner to perform the "Final Summoning" and defeat him. [[spoiler:Near the end of the game, the heroes discover that the method of defeating Sin is what perpetuates the cycle - -- the "Final Aeon" called by the Final Summoning becomes the next Sin. This is because Yu Yevon, the local deity, uses Sin as his vehicle; destroying him breaks the cycle for good.]]
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' ''VideoGame/FiveNightsAtFreddys2'' reveals that the restaurant has a similar situation, although it isn't clear if it's quite as regularly timed as most others.
** It's supposed to be. The Chosen is sent on his/her journey to supposedly reawaken the sleeping Goddess; doing so will revive the land and banish the evil Desians. What it's really doing is controlling the distribution of the remaining mana and preventing anyone's technology from getting to the point of large-scale, advanced war. It's supposed to happen at a fairly regular rate, but thanks to the Renegades killing a Chosen before the journey was completed, Tethe'alla's technology was allowed to get far more advanced than it should have.
** That world has a larger scale vicious cycle
been going as well. First, magitechnology is developed. Then, they develop a [[WaveMotionGun Mana Cannon]]. Use through one of the cannon uses up so much mana that supplies run low, chaos ensues, war escalates due to the combination of scarce resources and advanced weaponry, and humanity is thrust back to the dark ages, often with the help of an external force these. The restaurant re-opens, a terrible event happens (usually malicious angels, although at least one meteor). Then, after a thousand years or two, people exploring ruins begin finding out about this neat thing called "magitechnology"...
** The game also depicts racism as a case of this. Most half-elves hate humans because of the discrimination they suffer, and a lot of them end up joining the evil Desians to either escape it or get some revenge. Of course, most humans hate half-elves ''because'' of the atrocities the Desians commit against humans (in a nutshell, they're basically [[ThoseWackyNazis magical Nazis]]), so in the end both sides are responsible for driving the endless cycle of hate. [[TheCasanova Zelos]] of all people gives some [[HiddenDepths uncharacteristic insight]] when he points out how Genis and Raine have always been good to him and he genuinely does like them, but he's still having trouble shaking his discriminatory views of half-elves because of the way he was raised and the things he's seen the Desians do:
---> '''Lloyd:''' What, you going to discriminate against them too?
---> '''Zelos:''' ...I'm sure it sounds like that, but you've got to understand, I've been educated this way since birth. "Half-elves are stupid, savage, filthy creatures." Don't get mad. I'm just stating the common view. Well, I haven't been around them very long yet, but I can tell they're good people, not any different from us. Knowing that, but still being unable to shake the feelings, is what discrimination is all about, though.
* The latest story intel on the ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft}}'' series (mainly the "''Dark Templar''" book trilogy) posits that the [[{{Precursors}} Xel'Naga]] are not ''merely'' a superadvanced civilization whose experiments with creating the Zerg and Protoss failed miserably leading to their extinction. Rather, both the Protoss and Zerg are exactly what they were required to be, and in time the two species would have come together to create the new iteration of the (essentially godlike, "star-forging") Xel'Naga, as part of a cosmic cycle stretching back to the dawn of time. The current cycle never came to completion as intended, however, because ''[[EldritchAbomination someone]]'' interfered with the Zerg's genetic programming, making them [[PlanetLooters savage and all-consuming]], as a first step to breaking the cycle and ending the Universe.
** Worse! The ''someone'' who interfered was a fallen Xelnaga who began twisting the cycle to create more ''fallen'' Xelnaga(anything ''but'' Xelnaga in the Protoss Preservers' minds) by combining Zerg and Protoss DNA.
* The eponymous castle of the ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'' series of video games, as well as its lord, Count Dracula, reappears every 100 years [[ChaosArchitecture in a different form]]. In fact,
involving one of the major plot points of ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'' is that Castlevania's latest appearance is ''way'' ahead of schedule.
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaIISimonsQuest'' revolves around
animatronics) and then the player having restaurant closes down.
** ''VideoGame/FreddyFazbearsPizzeriaSimulator'' requires ''you''
to revive Dracula ahead of schedule in order to kill him again, in order to break a curse he put on Simon Belmont for defeating him.
** And
perpetuate the there's ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaAriaOfSorrow'' Vicious Cycle by opening your own restaurant, building it up to be successful, and ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaDawnOfSorrow'', trying to avoid the terrible events happening to anyone (including you!). [[spoiler: where Dracula was finally killed It's all an attempt to break the Vicious Cycle by trapping the evil, possessed animatronics in a location in which they cannot hurt anyone, and then burning it down to kill them all once and for good. But apparently the world needs a Dark Lord, so now all sorts of lunatics are trying their damnedest to become the new Dracula.all. It works.]]
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaPortraitOfRuin'' is another one that interrupts * In ''VideoGame/GuildWars2'' the vicious cycle. With Elder Dragons are normally dormant but periodically rise and wipe out all civilization. Some races such as the onset of World War II, [[spoiler: a squatter named Brauner used all Jotuns and Mursaat survived the hatred previous rising, though greatly reduced. Eventually it's determined their awakening is caused by [[spoiler:the ley lines becoming overburdened with magic. The Dragons act as a pressure release system, consuming the excess magic from the ley lines and torment felt by those killed in draining any magical artifacts. Without this the War to call forth Castlevania magic build up can release catastrophically]].
* ''VideoGame/{{killer7}}'' reveals at the end [[spoiler:that Harmon
and usurp its power for his own misanthropic needs. Because of this, Kun Lan play their game against each other every century or so; no matter who wins their previous match, the Belmont Family isn't even allowed to touch the sacred Vampire Killer whip until its next ''scheduled'' appearance game starts again in 1999.due time.]]
** According to * ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'''s Hyrule suffers this chronically, albeit not on a very tight schedule with Ganondorf/Ganon being repeatedly sealed and escaping or dying and reviving/being reborn exactly the timeline (and taking officially non-canon games into account), there are [[VideoGame/Castlevania64 several]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaCircleOfTheMoon times]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaLegacyOfDarkness in the]] [[VideoGame/CastlevaniaOrderOfEcclesia 1800's]] where Dracula is resurrected only same. Even when Ganon doesn't show up, another powerful demon ''will'' emerge to almost immediately be kicked back cover for him due to sleep by [[TheUnchosenOne some stranger who walked in off the street]].[[spoiler: [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSkywardSword Demise's Curse]]]].



* In ''Monster Girl Quest'', the human goddess, Ilias, has forbidden sexual intercourse with monsters. Seems fair enough, right? Well, [[SingleGenderRace all monsters are female]], so if human males follow Ilias' commandment, it's ''genocide''. So all the surviving species have adapted to raping human males every chance they get. Which, of course, leads the humans to believe all monsters are evil, which makes them more inclined to obey the commandment.



* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' uses this one nicely to explain why the game ends after 500 turns. Turns out every 100 million years, Planet's native life grows into a full-fledged, planet-wide hive mind, but the growth is so explosive it ends up eating everything on Planet and thus destroying itself. When the UN Unity arrived there, it's already been 99,999,500 years since the last outgrowth, and humanity has just 500 years to stop this cycle! What a pisser! There is also some implication that the thoughts of the human colonists are playing a role in awakening Planet and pushing it towards the end of the current cycle faster than it normally would.
** The ''Alien Crossfire'' ExpansionPack introduces the descendants of the {{Precursors}} that created Planet. It is also mentioned that a previous attempt by the creators to activate the final stage of the "Flowering" on a planet in Tau Ceti resulted in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt for them, with their descendants losing much of the knowledge their ancestors had. Presumably, similar catastrophes resulted from the other four experiments. Chiron is slecifically called by the aliens "Manifold Six". One of the factions wants to use the Flowering to [[AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence attain godhood]] at any cost, while the other one wants to maintain Planet's self-destructive cycle, avoiding another Tau Ceti disaster.
* ''VideoGame/{{killer7}}'' reveals at the end [[spoiler:that Harmon and Kun Lan play their game against each other every century or so; no matter who wins their previous match, the game starts again in due time.]]

to:

* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' uses this one nicely to explain why the game ends Oblivion total conversion mod ''[[VideoGame/{{Nehrim}} Nehrim: At Fate's Edge]]'' features one: soon after 500 turns. Turns out every 100 million years, Planet's native life grows into a full-fledged, planet-wide hive mind, but completing the growth objective worked toward throughout the main quest the PlayerCharacter learns that the events that they have experienced have been occurring in a repeating cycle for thousands of years; the final leg of the main quest is so explosive it ends up eating everything on Planet an attempt to break the cycle.
* The titular war in ''VideoGame/NexusClash'' is one of these, an endlessly repeating battle between gods who use souls snatched from the universe as pawns to fight for the right to shape the next one each time the world ends. Because all of the gods
and thus destroying itself. When their worlds are [[GodIsFlawed flawed]], the UN Unity arrived there, it's world will always end ''eventually'', forcing another battle that continues the cycle. It's a particularly vicious cycle if you're a PlayerCharacter caught in the war -- if you're even ''in'' the war, it means your universe has already been 99,999,500 years since the last outgrowth, destroyed, YouCantGoHomeAgain, and humanity has just 500 years all you can look forward to stop this cycle! What a pisser! There is also some implication that the thoughts more battles of the human colonists are playing a role in awakening Planet and pushing it towards war.
* In
the end ''VideoGame/PhantasyStar'' series, [[EldritchAbomination Dark Force]] attacks the planets of the current cycle faster than it normally would.
** The ''Alien Crossfire'' ExpansionPack introduces the descendants of the {{Precursors}} that created Planet. It is also mentioned that a previous attempt by the creators to activate the final stage of the "Flowering" on a planet in Tau Ceti resulted in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt for them, with their descendants losing much of the knowledge their ancestors had. Presumably, similar catastrophes resulted from the other four experiments. Chiron is slecifically called by the aliens "Manifold Six". One of the factions wants to use the Flowering to [[AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence attain godhood]] at any cost, while the other one wants to maintain Planet's self-destructive cycle, avoiding another Tau Ceti disaster.
* ''VideoGame/{{killer7}}'' reveals at the end [[spoiler:that Harmon and Kun Lan play their game against each other
Algol system every century or so; no matter who wins their previous match, 1,000 years. In ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarIV'', this is revealed to be because [[spoiler:an even ''worse'' entity, the game starts again in due time.Profound Darkness, is sealed behind the solar system itself, and Dark Force, the avatar of said entity, is attempting to free it]]. Not only that, [[spoiler:the destruction of Parma has weakened the seal on the Profound Darkness, so now there are ''three'' Dark Forces working simultaneously to release it.]]



* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** In the series' lore, the Kamal, an [[{{Wutai}} Akaviri]] race of "snow demons" are engaged in this. They are said to [[HumanPopsicle freeze every winter]] and thaw every spring, at which point they attack the Tang Mo ("monkey folk"). The Tang Mo have always successfully defended themselves against this attack. The one time the Kamal broke this cycle was to attack Tamriel (the continent where all of the games in the series to date have taken place) but were again defeated.
** As revealed in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, in a time before recorded history, Jyggalag, the [[OurGodsAreDifferent Daedric Prince]] of [[ControlFreak Order]] grew too powerful, making the other Daedric Princes fearful and jealous of him. They came together and cursed him, trapping in the form of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of [[MadGod Madness]]. However, at the end of every Era, he is allowed to return to his true form in an event known as the Greymarch. During this time, he retakes and destroys the Shivering Isles, Sheogorath's realm, only to return to the form of Sheogorath at the end. The plot of ''Shivering Isles'' is essentially Jygglag finding a way to escape this EternalRecurrence...
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' reveals that the universe itself runs in these, known as "kalpas", with [[BeastOfTheApocalypse Alduin]] eating the world and [[TopGod Akatosh]] renewing it every few thousand years. In the current ''kalpa'', [[spoiler:the ancient Nords disrupted the cycle by using an Elder Scroll to cast Alduin several thousand years forward in time]]. It's implied that Alduin himself disrupted the cycle, by striking before it was time and (in the first Dragon Wars) by enslaving and dominating humanity instead of just destroying the place like he's supposed to. At the end of the main quest, [[spoiler: the Dragonborn does not absorb Alduin's soul like he/she does other dragons. It is implied that Alduin will return to fulfill his duty as World Eater when the proper time comes]].

to:

* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls''
** In
''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' is ''very'' big on this, given the emphasis on the OrderVersusChaos setting, the instability of Neutrality, and the constant reminder that HumansAreFlawed. Particular examples include the Conception in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne'', the Schwartzwelt in ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiStrangeJourney'', and the constant rise and fall of several of the series' lore, gods. It's a bitter reminder that OrderVersusChaos cannot be ''anything'' except a ForeverWar.
** It's also a major problem for
the Kamal, an [[{{Wutai}} Akaviri]] race of "snow demons" are engaged in this. They are said to [[HumanPopsicle freeze every winter]] and thaw every spring, at [[TrueNeutral Neutral]] alignment, which point they attack vows to protect the Tang Mo ("monkey folk"). The Tang Mo have potential of mankind, as well as freedom and self-empowerment... all of which brought the EndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt in the first place, although the natural tendency for belief to unknowingly fuel civilization-crushing supernatural entities doesn't exactly help.
** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV'' finally breaks down and explains the system. [[spoiler: Any victory is inherently temporary because humans will
always successfully defended themselves against this attack. The one time seek to fix the Kamal broke this cycle was problems of Law or Chaos. If the world submits to attack Tamriel (the continent where all God, then the descendants of the games in Chosen will want freedom someday; if the series world falls into Chaos, then eventually people will build an ordered society, which will lead to date have taken place) religion and in turn to YHVH. A Neutral victory is possible, but were again defeated.
** As revealed in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, in a time before recorded history, Jyggalag,
that's inherently temporary too; at some point that society will fail as well and either turn to Order or Chaos. The only possible eternal victory is to reduce the [[OurGodsAreDifferent Daedric Prince]] world to Nothingness, which really isn't a solution.]]
* Dark Gaia
of [[ControlFreak Order]] grew too powerful, making the other Daedric Princes fearful and jealous ''VideoGame/SonicUnleashed'' gathers energy over millions of him. They came together and cursed him, trapping in the form of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of [[MadGod Madness]]. However, at the end of every Era, he is allowed to return to his true form in an event known as the Greymarch. During this time, he retakes years, then rises and destroys the Shivering Isles, Sheogorath's realm, only planet. This is counterbalanced by Light Gaia, who puts it all back together. Dr. Eggman's attempt to return to harness the form energy of Sheogorath at the end. The plot Dark Gaia ends up causing a smaller scale version of ''Shivering Isles'' is essentially Jygglag finding a way to escape this EternalRecurrence...
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'' reveals
in that the universe itself runs in these, known as "kalpas", with [[BeastOfTheApocalypse Alduin]] planet is split into floating continents, due to Dark Gaia not being at full strength thanks to the early awakening.
* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' uses this one nicely to explain why the game ends after 500 turns. Turns out every 100 million years, Planet's native life grows into a full-fledged, planet-wide hive mind, but the growth is so explosive it ends up
eating everything on Planet and thus destroying itself. When the world UN Unity arrived there, it's already been 99,999,500 years since the last outgrowth, and [[TopGod Akatosh]] renewing humanity has just 500 years to stop this cycle! What a pisser! There is also some implication that the thoughts of the human colonists are playing a role in awakening Planet and pushing it every few thousand years. In towards the end of the current ''kalpa'', [[spoiler:the ancient Nords disrupted cycle faster than it normally would.
** The ''Alien Crossfire'' ExpansionPack introduces the descendants of the {{Precursors}} that created Planet. It is also mentioned that a previous attempt by the creators to activate the final stage of the "Flowering" on a planet in Tau Ceti resulted in TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt for them, with their descendants losing much of the knowledge their ancestors had. Presumably, similar catastrophes resulted from the other four experiments. Chiron is specifically called by the aliens "Manifold Six". One of the factions wants to use the Flowering to [[AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence attain godhood]] at any cost, while the other one wants to maintain Planet's self-destructive cycle, avoiding another Tau Ceti disaster.
* The latest story intel on the ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft}}'' series (mainly the "''Dark Templar''" book trilogy) posits that the [[{{Precursors}} Xel'Naga]] are not ''merely'' a superadvanced civilization whose experiments with creating the Zerg and Protoss failed miserably leading to their extinction. Rather, both the Protoss and Zerg are exactly what they were required to be, and in time the two species would have come together to create the new iteration of the (essentially godlike, "star-forging") Xel'Naga, as part of a cosmic cycle stretching back to the dawn of time. The current cycle never came to completion as intended, however, because ''[[EldritchAbomination someone]]'' interfered with the Zerg's genetic programming, making them [[PlanetLooters savage and all-consuming]], as a first step to breaking
the cycle and ending the Universe.
** Worse! The ''someone'' who interfered was a fallen Xelnaga who began twisting the cycle to create more ''fallen'' Xelnaga(anything ''but'' Xelnaga in the Protoss Preservers' minds)
by using combining Zerg and Protoss DNA.
* ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'' has a similar situation, although it isn't clear if it's quite as regularly timed as most others.
** It's supposed to be. The Chosen is sent on his/her journey to supposedly reawaken the sleeping Goddess; doing so will revive the land and banish the evil Desians. What it's really doing is controlling the distribution of the remaining mana and preventing anyone's technology from getting to the point of large-scale, advanced war. It's supposed to happen at a fairly regular rate, but thanks to the Renegades killing a Chosen before the journey was completed, Tethe'alla's technology was allowed to get far more advanced than it should have.
** That world has a larger scale vicious cycle going as well. First, magitechnology is developed. Then, they develop a [[WaveMotionGun Mana Cannon]]. Use of the cannon uses up so much mana that supplies run low, chaos ensues, war escalates due to the combination of scarce resources and advanced weaponry, and humanity is thrust back to the dark ages, often with the help of
an Elder Scroll to cast Alduin several external force (usually malicious angels, although at least one meteor). Then, after a thousand years forward in time]]. It's implied that Alduin himself disrupted or two, people exploring ruins begin finding out about this neat thing called "magitechnology"...
** The game also depicts racism as a case of this. Most half-elves hate humans because of
the cycle, by striking before it was time discrimination they suffer, and a lot of them end up joining the evil Desians to either escape it or get some revenge. Of course, most humans hate half-elves ''because'' of the atrocities the Desians commit against humans (in a nutshell, they're basically [[ThoseWackyNazis magical Nazis]]), so in the first Dragon Wars) by enslaving end both sides are responsible for driving the endless cycle of hate. [[TheCasanova Zelos]] of all people gives some [[HiddenDepths uncharacteristic insight]] when he points out how Genis and dominating humanity instead of just destroying the place Raine have always been good to him and he genuinely does like them, but he's supposed to. At the end still having trouble shaking his discriminatory views of half-elves because of the main quest, [[spoiler: way he was raised and the Dragonborn does not absorb Alduin's soul things he's seen the Desians do:
---> '''Lloyd:''' What, you going to discriminate against them too?
---> '''Zelos:''' ...I'm sure it sounds
like he/she does other dragons. It is implied that Alduin will return that, but you've got to fulfill his duty as World Eater when understand, I've been educated this way since birth. "Half-elves are stupid, savage, filthy creatures." Don't get mad. I'm just stating the proper time comes]].common view. Well, I haven't been around them very long yet, but I can tell they're good people, not any different from us. Knowing that, but still being unable to shake the feelings, is what discrimination is all about, though.
* If you're not careful in ''VideoGame/ThisIsThePolice'', this could happen to you. Poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to [[OverlyLongGag poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance]] leads to you losing your ability to give a shit anymore.



* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' is built on the Vicious Cycle between mages and the templars meant to keep them in check. To keep them in check, the templars lock mages away in towers and generally treat them as less than human beings. To break this oppression mages turn to BloodMagic. This causes the templars to become more oppressive and by the end of the game both have reached the breaking point and the world is about ready to go to war between the mages and templars. Which side exactly started the cycle is never answered and aids the game's GreyAndGrayMorality.
* The Grail War in ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' occurs every 60 years, when there is enough magical energy in Fuyuki to activate the Grail. The system was arranged many years ago by the three mage families in order to determine the Grail's possession. The thing is, the war was supposed to have ended on [[LightNovel/FateZero the fourth iteration]], but it's eventually revealed that the process merely sped up, allowing the next Grail War to start fifty years early. [[spoiler:The Grail War system was eventually dismantled in the Heaven's Feel route.]]
* ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'''s Hyrule suffers this chronically, albeit not on a very tight schedule with Ganondorf/Ganon being repeatedly sealed and escaping or dying and reviving/being reborn exactly the same. Even when Ganon doesn't show up, another powerful demon ''will'' emerge to cover for him due to [[spoiler: [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSkywardSword Demise's Curse]]]].
* In ''Monster Girl Quest'', the human goddess, Ilias, has forbidden sexual intercourse with monsters. Seems fair enough, right? Well, [[SingleGenderRace all monsters are female]], so if human males follow Ilias' commandment, it's ''genocide''. So all the surviving species have adapted to raping human males every chance they get. Which, of course, leads the humans to believe all monsters are evil, which makes them more inclined to obey the commandment.
* This is a major plot point in ''VideoGame/DragonsDogma''. [[spoiler:Every several hundred years, the Seneschal unleashes the Dragon, whose goal is to both bring the end of days, and to create an Arisen that has the ability to grow strong enough to face the Dragon. If the Arisen fails, the Seneschal supposedly recreates the world and begins anew. If the Arisen succeeds and the Dragon is killed, the Arisen is given the Godsbane sword and slays the Seneschal with it, effectively becoming the new Seneschal who then creates their own Dragon, and the cycle begins anew]]. However, [[spoiler:when your Arisen kills the Seneschal, they instead choose to [[DrivenToSuicide turn the Godsbane on themselves]] in an effort to finally break the cycle for good... which still doesn't work as a NewGamePlus playthrough reveals.]]
* In ''Videogame/DarkSouls'', the whole point is to break the Vicious Cycle: the Age of Fire is ending, and the Age of Dark is coming, but the Age of Fire can be extended by having a chosen undead retrieve souls of great power, prove themselves worthy, and link the First Flame as tinder to keep it burning. Gwyn, the Lord of Cinder, linked it first, and all other chosen undead seek to follow in his footsteps.
** In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn that the world have been stuck in a continuous cycle since the events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''. Kingdoms and Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, and begins slaying the inhabitants of the lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].
*** ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsIII'' takes this to its logical conclusion; artificially extending the Age of Fire by linking the First Flame is having disastrous consequences, to the point that more and more chosen undead are failing to successfully link the First Flame and extend the Age further. It's gotten so bad that five ''previous'' champions are revived to try one last time to do it, and they ''refuse'', resulting in the all-but-doomed-to-fail attempt to revive one of the unworthy undead as an Ashen champion to hunt down the five champions and try to link the First Flame with that power. The further you progress into the game, the more it becomes painfully aware that trying to break the Vicious Cycle is having ''terrible'' consequences, including the sun going out, people being unable to die ''without'' being undead, monstrous creatures of ash appearing, and [[spoiler: the Dark Soul appearing and going completely berserk]]. Even if the Ashen Champion manages to succeed and link the First Flame at the end, [[spoiler: it's clear that the First Flame is dying out anyway, as the Ashen Champion isn't even hurt by the weak flames flickering over their body.]]
*** The DLC ''Ashes of Ariandel'' and ''The Ringed City'' make it clear that extending the Age of Fire is [[spoiler: disastrous. If the Age of Fire is extended too long, the world will begin to literally collapse, with locations from throughout time slowly contracting into a single point, the eponymous Ringed City. Beyond that, the world is nothing but a wasteland, with even the undead, who cannot die, dying out, the Dark Soul running rampant, and reality literally starting to break down.]] In other words, the Vicious Cycle between the Age of Fire and the Age of Dark ''must'' continue, ''or else''.
* In ''Dark Souls''' spiritual sibling, ''VideoGame/{{Bloodborne}}'', a vicious cycle known as [[TheNightThatNeverEnds The Night of The Hunt]] plagues the city of Yharnam with a lycanthropic affliction known as [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent "the Scourge of Beasts"]] and [[HunterOfMonsters the Hunters]] stalk the streets. It's gotten to the point that it's implied by some NPC Yharnamites that The Night of The Hunt has become a part of their everynight routine, and what's worse is that this cycle is still implied to be a considerable improvement compared to how things used to be in the past, with two precursor civilizations, Loran and Pthumeru, having been wiped out by earlier scourge outbreaks. And if you think that ''you'' are going to break the cycle, think again: If you accept [[OldMaster Gehrman's]] offer to free you from the night, you'll leave all of its dreams and nightmares behind to greet the sunrise of the next day, but while this is arguably the happiest ending for your Hunter, it's also just the end of one cycle and the start of the next. Should you refuse Gehrman's offer, you'll instead be forced to take his place as the host of the Hunter's Dream and guide future Hunters of coming Nights. And should you unlock the secret ending [[spoiler:you'll turn into an infant [[EldritchAbomination Great One]], and while this concievably puts you into a position to break the cycle there's still the fact of the matter that the source of the last Scourge of Beasts happened to be an infant Great One, and considering that you've hunted down your fair share of Great Ones during the course of the Night, you may just have put yourself into a position where future Hunters will be gunning for ''you'' during future Nights of the Hunt.]]
* ''VideoGame/FiveNightsAtFreddys2'' reveals that the restaurant has been going through one of these. The restaurant re-opens, a terrible event happens (usually involving one of the animatronics) and then the restaurant closes down.
** ''VideoGame/FreddyFazbearsPizzeriaSimulator'' requires ''you'' to perpetuate the Vicious Cycle by opening your own restaurant, building it up to be successful, and trying to avoid the terrible events happening to anyone (including you!). [[spoiler: It's all an attempt to break the Vicious Cycle by trapping the evil, possessed animatronics in a location in which they cannot hurt anyone, and then burning it down to kill them all once and for all. It works.]]
* Oblivion total conversion mod ''[[VideoGame/{{Nehrim}} Nehrim: At Fate's Edge]]'' features one: soon after completing the objective worked toward throughout the main quest the PlayerCharacter learns that the events that they have experienced have been occurring in a repeating cycle for thousands of years; the final leg of the main quest is an attempt to break the cycle.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Enderal}} Enderal: The Shards of Order]]'', a total conversion for Skyrim and a sequel to ''VideoGame/{{Nehrim}}'' mentioned above, reveals that the events of Nehrim are part of a much larger and much more expansive cycle of total annihilation of all sentient life in the world, which of course the player is tasked to prevent. [[spoiler:Then it turns out that trying to prevent the cycle is actually part of the grand scheme that makes it happen; at ''best'' the player can postpone it with the hopes of it being stopped in the future]].
* The titular war in ''VideoGame/NexusClash'' is one of these, an endlessly repeating battle between gods who use souls snatched from the universe as pawns to fight for the right to shape the next one each time the world ends. Because all of the gods and their worlds are [[GodIsFlawed flawed]], the world will always end ''eventually'', forcing another battle that continues the cycle. It's a particularly vicious cycle if you're a PlayerCharacter caught in the war - if you're even ''in'' the war, it means your universe has already been destroyed, YouCantGoHomeAgain, and all you can look forward to is more battles of the war.
* If you're not careful in ''VideoGame/ThisIsThePolice'', this could happen to you. Poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to [[OverlyLongGag poor performance leads to the mayor slashing your budget leads to you having to fire someone leads to poor performance]] leads to you losing your ability to give a shit anymore.
* In ''VideoGame/GuildWars2'' the Elder Dragons are normally dormant but periodically rise and wipe out all civilization. Some races such as the Jotuns and Mursaat survived the previous rising, though greatly reduced. Eventually it's determined their awakening is caused by [[spoiler:the ley lines becoming overburdened with magic. The Dragons act as a pressure release system, consuming the excess magic from the ley lines and draining any magical artifacts. Without this the magic build up can release catastrophically]].



* In ''Webcomic/TheWitchsThrone'', a girl is chosen as a Witch every ten years, and four heroes must rise up to defeat her.
* The calendar in ''Webcomic/WapsiSquare'' puts the world through cycle after cycle, resetting time every time it hits 2012. One character retains her knowledge through all cycles, and has seen over 80,000 years worth of this cycle.



* It is [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots1139.html eventually revealed]] in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' that the world the story takes place in [[spoiler:is not the second world the gods made, as previously believed, but that the gods kept trying to trap the Snarl inside worlds countless times before, and it never stuck; every time, the Snarl escaped its prison and destroyed that world, followed by the gods creating another world, and then another after that, and so on]].



* It is [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots1139.html eventually revealed]] in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' that the world the story takes place in [[spoiler:is not the second world the gods made, as previously believed, but that the gods kept trying to trap the Snarl inside worlds countless times before, and it never stuck; every time, the Snarl escaped its prison and destroyed that world, followed by the gods creating another world, and then another after that, and so on]].

to:

* It is [[http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots1139.html eventually revealed]] The calendar in ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' that ''Webcomic/WapsiSquare'' puts the world the story takes place in [[spoiler:is not the second world the gods made, as previously believed, but that the gods kept trying to trap the Snarl inside worlds countless times before, and it never stuck; through cycle after cycle, resetting time every time, the Snarl escaped its prison time it hits 2012. One character retains her knowledge through all cycles, and destroyed that world, followed by the gods creating another world, has seen over 80,000 years worth of this cycle.
* In ''Webcomic/TheWitchsThrone'', a girl is chosen as a Witch every ten years,
and then another after that, and so on]].four heroes must rise up to defeat her.

Added DiffLines:

** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV'' finally breaks down and explains the system. [[spoiler: Any victory is inherently temporary because humans will always seek to fix the problems of Law or Chaos. If the world submits to God, then the descendants of the Chosen will want freedom someday; if the world falls into Chaos, then eventually people will build an ordered society, which will lead to religion and in turn to YHVH. A Neutral victory is possible, but that's inherently temporary too; at some point that society will fail as well and either turn to Order or Chaos. The only possible eternal victory is to reduce the world to Nothingness, which really isn't a solution.]]


* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles on a grand scale form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether [[YouCantFightFate as a natural and inevitable consequence]] of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem the nature of the universe]], [[EternalRecurrance everyone is doomed]] to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].

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* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles on a grand scale form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether [[YouCantFightFate as a natural and inevitable consequence]] of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem the nature of the universe]], [[EternalRecurrance [[EternalRecurrence everyone is doomed]] to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].



** As revealed in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, in a time before recorded history, Jyggalag, the [[OurGodsAreDifferent Daedric Prince]] of [[ControlFreak Order]] grew too powerful, making the other Daedric Princes fearful and jealous of him. They came together and cursed him, trapping in the form of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of [[MadGod Madness]]. However, at the end of every Era, he is allowed to return to his true form in an event known as the Greymarch. During this time, he retakes and destroys the Shivering Isles, Sheogorath's realm, only to return to the form of Sheogorath at the end. The plot of ''Shivering Isles'' is essentially Jygglag finding a way to escape this EternalRecurrance...

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** As revealed in ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'''s ''Shivering Isles'' expansion, in a time before recorded history, Jyggalag, the [[OurGodsAreDifferent Daedric Prince]] of [[ControlFreak Order]] grew too powerful, making the other Daedric Princes fearful and jealous of him. They came together and cursed him, trapping in the form of Sheogorath, the Daedric Prince of [[MadGod Madness]]. However, at the end of every Era, he is allowed to return to his true form in an event known as the Greymarch. During this time, he retakes and destroys the Shivering Isles, Sheogorath's realm, only to return to the form of Sheogorath at the end. The plot of ''Shivering Isles'' is essentially Jygglag finding a way to escape this EternalRecurrance...EternalRecurrence...


* In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn that the world have been stuck in a continuous cycle since the events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''. Kingdoms and Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, and begins slaying the inhabitants of the lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].
** ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsIII'' takes this to its logical conclusion; artificially extending the Age of Fire by linking the First Flame is having disastrous consequences, to the point that more and more chosen undead are failing to successfully link the First Flame and extend the Age further. It's gotten so bad that five ''previous'' champions are revived to try one last time to do it, and they ''refuse'', resulting in the all-but-doomed-to-fail attempt to revive one of the unworthy undead as an Ashen champion to hunt down the five champions and try to link the First Flame with that power. The further you progress into the game, the more it becomes painfully aware that trying to break the Vicious Cycle is having ''terrible'' consequences, including the sun going out, people being unable to die ''without'' being undead, monstrous creatures of ash appearing, and [[spoiler: the Dark Soul appearing and going completely berserk]]. Even if the Ashen Champion manages to succeed and link the First Flame at the end, [[spoiler: it's clear that the First Flame is dying out anyway, as the Ashen Champion isn't even hurt by the weak flames flickering over their body.]]
*** The DLC ''Ashes of Ariandel'' and ''The Ringed City'' make it clear that extending the Age of Fire is [[spoiler: disastrous. If the Age of Fire is extended too long, the world will begin to literally collapse, with locations from throughout time slowly contracting into a single point, the eponymous Ringed City. Beyond that, the world is nothing but a wasteland, with even the undead, who cannot die, dying out, the Dark Soul running rampant, and reality literally starting to break down.]] In other words, the Vicious Cycle between the Age of Fire and the Age of Dark ''must'' continue, ''or else''.

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* ** In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'' we learn that the world have been stuck in a continuous cycle since the events of ''Videogame/DarkSouls''. Kingdoms and Empires will rise to power before the undead curse appears again, making the entire world extremely hostile. At some point after the curse appear, a [[LegacyCharacter chosen undead]] appear, and begins slaying the inhabitants of the lands. The previous monarch during was King Vendrick, who took the throne but refused to sit on it. He and his brother [[MadScientist Aldia]] tried to find a way to stop the cycle permanently. It did not work as intended. When the final boss is defeated, the chosen undead sits on the throne and becomes the monarch of the next kingdom. Dialogue with [[spoiler:Vendrick in the Memory of the King]] reveals that he did find a way, though by the time he did he could no longer do it himself: [[spoiler:master the power of the First Flame ''and'' the Dark Soul]].
** *** ''VideoGame/DarkSoulsIII'' takes this to its logical conclusion; artificially extending the Age of Fire by linking the First Flame is having disastrous consequences, to the point that more and more chosen undead are failing to successfully link the First Flame and extend the Age further. It's gotten so bad that five ''previous'' champions are revived to try one last time to do it, and they ''refuse'', resulting in the all-but-doomed-to-fail attempt to revive one of the unworthy undead as an Ashen champion to hunt down the five champions and try to link the First Flame with that power. The further you progress into the game, the more it becomes painfully aware that trying to break the Vicious Cycle is having ''terrible'' consequences, including the sun going out, people being unable to die ''without'' being undead, monstrous creatures of ash appearing, and [[spoiler: the Dark Soul appearing and going completely berserk]]. Even if the Ashen Champion manages to succeed and link the First Flame at the end, [[spoiler: it's clear that the First Flame is dying out anyway, as the Ashen Champion isn't even hurt by the weak flames flickering over their body.]]
*** **** The DLC ''Ashes of Ariandel'' and ''The Ringed City'' make it clear that extending the Age of Fire is [[spoiler: disastrous. If the Age of Fire is extended too long, the world will begin to literally collapse, with locations from throughout time slowly contracting into a single point, the eponymous Ringed City. Beyond that, the world is nothing but a wasteland, with even the undead, who cannot die, dying out, the Dark Soul running rampant, and reality literally starting to break down.]] In other words, the Vicious Cycle between the Age of Fire and the Age of Dark ''must'' continue, ''or else''.


* In ''VideoGame/GuildWars2'' the Elder Dragons are normally dormant but periodically rise and wipe out all civilization. Some races such as the Jotuns and Mursaat survived, though greatly reduced. Eventually it's determined their awakening is caused by [[spoiler:the ley lines becoming overburdened with magic. The Dragons act as a pressure release system, consuming the excess magic from the ley lines and draining any magical artifacts. Without this the magic build up can release catastrophically]].

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* In ''VideoGame/GuildWars2'' the Elder Dragons are normally dormant but periodically rise and wipe out all civilization. Some races such as the Jotuns and Mursaat survived, survived the previous rising, though greatly reduced. Eventually it's determined their awakening is caused by [[spoiler:the ley lines becoming overburdened with magic. The Dragons act as a pressure release system, consuming the excess magic from the ley lines and draining any magical artifacts. Without this the magic build up can release catastrophically]].


** ''VideoGame/FreddysPizzeriaSimulator'' requires ''you'' to perpetuate the Vicious Cycle by opening your own restaurant, building it up to be successful, and trying to avoid the terrible events happening to anyone (including you!). [[spoiler: It's all an attempt to break the Vicious Cycle by trapping the evil, possessed animatronics in a location in which they cannot hurt anyone, and then burning it down to kill them all once and for all. It works.]]

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** ''VideoGame/FreddysPizzeriaSimulator'' ''VideoGame/FreddyFazbearsPizzeriaSimulator'' requires ''you'' to perpetuate the Vicious Cycle by opening your own restaurant, building it up to be successful, and trying to avoid the terrible events happening to anyone (including you!). [[spoiler: It's all an attempt to break the Vicious Cycle by trapping the evil, possessed animatronics in a location in which they cannot hurt anyone, and then burning it down to kill them all once and for all. It works.]]



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[[folder:Webcomics]][[folder:Web Comics]]





* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles on a grand scale form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether [[YouCantFightFate as a natural and inevitable consequence]] of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem nature of the universe]], everyone is doomed to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].

to:

* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles on a grand scale form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether [[YouCantFightFate as a natural and inevitable consequence]] of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem the nature of the universe]], [[EternalRecurrance everyone is doomed doomed]] to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].


* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether as a natural and inevitable consequence of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem nature of the universe]], everyone is doomed to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].

to:

* ''Fanfic/CodexEquus'': The existence of various Vicious Cycles on a grand scale form a [[CentralTheme major part]] of the setting, where individuals, civilizations and pantheons rises only to be undone by their [[InYourNatureToDestroyYourselves flaws and mistakes]], or [[ApocalypseHow circumstances and calamities]] well beyond their control. The question poised is whether or not these Vicious Cycles [[ScrewDestiny could ever be overcome]], or whether [[YouCantFightFate as a natural and inevitable consequence consequence]] of [[HumansAreFlawed sapient]] [[HumansAreBastards nature]] and [[InherentInTheSystem nature of the universe]], everyone is doomed to [[HistoryRepeats repeat the same mistakes]] or [[RestartTheWorld suffer world-resetting destruction]].

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