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1[[quoteright:300:]]²[[caption-width-right:300: You, too, will come to understand fear... as I have.]]²²->''"Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, doubting..."''²-->--'''Quote from Creator/EdgarAllanPoe's "Literature/TheRaven" used in the game's title sequence.'''²²''Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem'' is a horror-themed action-adventure game released for the UsefulNotes/NintendoGameCube in 2002. It was developed by Creator/SiliconKnights and published/owned by Creator/{{Nintendo}}.[[note]]It is the first [[UsefulNotes/MediaClassifications M-rated]] game published by Nintendo.[[/note]] The game contains {{psychological horror}} elements and is influenced by, and features numerous nods to, the works of Creator/HPLovecraft, Creator/EdgarAllanPoe, Creator/AlfredHitchcock, Creator/StephenKing, and other similar authors, making it something akin to ''Franchise/ResidentEvil'' meets ''TableTopGame/CallOfCthulhu''.²²Alexandra "Alex" Roivas, a student at a Washington university, is completing her graduate degree in abstract mathematics and number theory. An early morning call from a detective brings her rushing to her grandfather's Rhode Island mansion, as she has to identify his body after his grisly and baffling murder. The detective is left clueless, as the house shows no signs of a break-in and the old man had no known enemies. The police's investigation into the murder eventually stalls, but Alex stays in the mansion to try figuring out the mystery behind her grandfather's death.²²Her search of the mansion leads to a hidden book called the [[TomeOfEldritchLore Tome of Eternal Darkness]], a book that contains the stories of people throughout history who were involved in both unlocking and fighting against several [[EldritchAbomination otherworldly gods.]] As Alex reads the book, she is imparted with the knowledge these long dead people achieved -- as well as arcane magic unleashed by their explorations. Continuing to read the book loosens her grip on both reality and sanity, but Alex is determined to be the last link in the story -- and stop the evil forces once and for all.²²''Eternal Darkness'' brought several things to the table that no game before it had managed to pull off. A versatile magic system allows the player to create new spells using runes (actually closer to sigils or glyphs, as the symbols in the game represent words while real runes are single letters) in a system much like grammatically creating new sentences. The game also includes a "sanity system." In addition to health and magic meters, the game's SanityMeter drops every time an undead creature sees you. You can regain sanity by decisively finishing the creatures off, though the recovered amount will always be less than that taken away in the initial shock. If the Sanity Meter drops low enough, players will experience random in-game hallucinations: Books spontaneously fly from one bookshelf to another, footsteps follow Alex despite nothing being behind her, and Alex's dead family members might even make telephone calls or show up as ghosts. More devious hallucinations involve body parts exploding during unsuccessful magic casting, screaming voices and bleeding walls, random paintings turning from idyllic scenes to hellish environments, and statues and busts watching Alex as she walks by. The worst of these effects are the [[InterfaceScrew hardware tricks:]] The controller ceases to work in a room full of enemies, the video signal cuts out, the audio volume changes on its own, and the game leads you to believe ''it has erased your memory card''.²²Despite Silicon Knights' eventual bankruptcy, founder Denis Dyack has long-wanted to create a sequel known as ''Shadow of the Eternals'', and has attempted several times to crowdfund it under multiple different new companies. Due to several setbacks, including the aforementioned bankruptcy, the initial crowdfunding campaign's very unpopular terms and the arrest of the co-designer, it seems increasingly unlikely that it will ever get made, but Dyack has yet to give up.²²After sixteen years of relative silence regarding the game in any form besides renewing its trademark, Nintendo gave it an official nod by including Alex as a Spirit in their massive crossover, ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBrosUltimate''.²²----²!! ''Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem'' contains the following tropes:²²* AbilityRequiredToProceed: Most chapter pages can only be found by using an ability or solving a puzzle that you learned in the previous chapter.²* ActionBomb: Ulyaoth zombies sing and explode if you [[RemovingTheHeadOrDestroyingTheBrain don't remove their heads.]] If one starts singing all the nearby zombies sing and explode, and the more there are, [[DisasterDominoes the bigger each explosion will be.]]²* AnachronicOrder: There is a bit of an order to the chapters: While they do tend to jump around a lot, all the chapters that take place in the same location happen in the correct chronological order. {{Justified|Trope}} when you consider that [[spoiler:Mantorok can manipulate time. Every person got the book with the spells that they would need when they needed it in order to further his GambitRoulette.]]²* AncientConspiracy: For at least two thousand years, the Ancients and followers have been keeping their movements out of public view and have been working toward the overthrow of humanity. Mantorok, however, has done a lot of operating out in the open.²* AndIMustScream: ²** Mantorok's binding to the temple qualifies, as does Anthony being trapped despairing in an empty chamber under an unrelenting zombifying curse. He is put to rest after a few centuries by Paul Luther. ²** There's also Roberto Bianchi, a Venetian architect who gets buried alive in what Pious refers to as "The Pillar of Flesh" (a monolith made of concrete and dead bodies) until his spirit is released over 500 years later; Ellia, a UsefulNotes/{{Cambodia}}n slave girl cursed to guard Mantorok's heart for more than ''800 years'' as a rotting corpse; and Karim, a Persian man cursed to spend a whopping ''900 years'' guarding another of the ancient artifacts as a disembodied spirit.²** Xel'lotath zombies are so psychologically tormented that they're too crazy to die.²** Bonethieves puppet their skin suits around while the original owner is still consious and aware.²* AndNowForSomeoneCompletelyDifferent: Happens every chapter. The game will switch from Alex Roivas to the star of any playable chapter when Alex finds the appropriate page.²* AnotherMansTerror: Given the survival rate of the Tome's readers, the player experiences a lot of this.²* AntiFrustrationFeatures: Sanity effects don't trigger during big boss battles, except for the DutchAngle and wind chimes. Also, for those who have particular difficulty (or otherwise take an inordinate amount of time) solving the first puzzle in the game, a ghostly voice will whisper the answer.²* AnyoneCanDie: Being a playable character does not exempt you from a horrible death (or worse) in the slightest. Out of all the playable characters [[spoiler:only three survive their stories, and at least one of them is implied to still be on the run and might not live for much longer.]]²* ApocalypseHow: Dominance by any of the three Ancients would result in a Planetary Class 3; [[spoiler:Mantorok's dominance has an uncertain future.]]²* ArcNumber: The number 333 shows up in several places.²* ArtifactOfDoom: The Ancients' essences.²* ArtisticLicenseHistory: Though his death is a mystery even today, UsefulNotes/{{Charlemagne}} the Frank is assassinated in UsefulNotes/{{France}} rather than historical UsefulNotes/{{Germany}} to further the Ancient's plans; his death does correspond, however, to the time he died in the real world.²* BagOfHolding: The description for the Tome of Eternal Darkness states it has such properties and easily explains how the characters carry around all the crap they find. This doesn't explain how Edward can carry around a saber and two books the size of his head ''before'' he gets it. Only Michael Edwards finds anywhere near as much before the Tome itself, and he finds it in a way he likely got the stuff to carry it as well.²* BeatThemAtTheirOwnGame: [[spoiler:How Alex defeats Pious, by summoning her own Ancient to fight his.]] Almost leads to OutOfTheFryingPan when [[spoiler:Alex realizes she just opened the door to an equally dangerous entity that doesn't have an adversary and that has plans to also enslave mankind]] but avoided when [[spoiler:her grandfather intervenes to bind the Ancient, preventing any of this from happening]].²* BedlamHouse: The Jefferson & Coombs Sanitarium, where Max spends the remainder of his life.²* BeneathTheEarth: Ehn'gha, the ancient city.²* BewareMyStingerTail: Gate Keeper Guardians and Trappers, though the latter does not do direct damage.²* {{BFG}}:²** One of the guns in Edward's gun case is an Elephant Gun. It takes Edward a second or two to level it, but you can shoot before that; if you do, Edward gets knocked back on his ass and it takes a moment to get back on his feet. And sweet Christmas is it powerful. Two bullet firing with a 7 point enchantment will kill a Guardian in one shot.²** Michael's OICW is a modern day assault rifle, complete with the gun's GrenadeLauncher as an underbarrel mount. Compared to the limited capabilities of the other characters' weapons, that is a ''lot'' of firepower.²* {{BFS}}:²** Karim's Ram Dao certainly fits into this category. Like the Elephant Gun described above, it is wickedly destructive. A "head shot" will destroy a standard target's entire upper body, and properly enchanted, it will slay a Horror in a couple hits, again leaving just a pair of legs to fall comically to the ground.²** The Two-Edged Sword used by Anthony, Paul and Peter Jacob can take down a Horror in a few swings, and it's insanely good compared to the weak melee weapons the former two get earlier (a Scramasax and a Mace, respectively).²* BilingualBonus: "Oubli&eacute;" is French for "Forgotten".²* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler: Humanity is saved, Alex is able to bid her grandfather a proper goodbye, and all the restless souls the Ancients killed can now pass on in peace. However, while she puts up a strong front, Alex herself is clearly traumatized by everything that has happened and is currently all alone.]] Meanwhile, [[spoiler:there are still [[KarmaHoudini two ancients at large]], though this one [[KarmaHoudiniWarranty can be changed by the player]] by [[NewGamePlus completing the game two more times.]]]]²* BizarreAlienBiology:²** Xel'lotath Horrors have jaws for eyelids.²** In general the Horrors and Guardians, as said by Maximilian, make no sense from an anatomical standpoint but somehow still work. The Xel'lotath Guardians in particular not only lack organs but don't even have ''heads.''²* BlackComedy: The game ''does'' have a sense of humor, mostly regarding some of the particular over-the-top sanity effects like the player character's head falling off and reciting Hamlet.²* {{Blipvert}}: Happens every time a character, from Chapter 3 on, picks up the Tome of Eternal Darkness.²* BodyHorror: Bonethieves, inducing both nightmares and paranoia.²* BodyOfBodies: Downplayed. Xel'latoth Gatekeepers are a pair of headless torsos fused together at the waist. Instead of glowing ''eyes'' when they MindRape a character, it's their ''neck stumps''.²* BookEnds: This pair of gems at the beginning and end of the game, respectively:²-->'''Pious:''' [[spoiler:To think that once I could not see beyond the veil of our reality... To see those who dwell behind. My life now has purpose, for I have learned the frailty of flesh and bone... I was once a fool.]]\²'''Alex:''' [[spoiler:And yet, as quickly as it began, it ended... To think that once I could not see beyond the veil of reality, to see those who dwell behind... I was once a fool.]]²* BoozeBasedBuff: Edward can chug a quick swig of port wine in his chapter to regain some sanity.²* BossBanter: [[spoiler:The Black Guardian in Peter's chapter will start engaging in this, taunting Peter, if hit with [[NoSell non-magickal attacks.]]]]²* BlessedWithSuck:²** Sure sounds cool to get a tome of incredible power and knowledge, which not only gives you access to magic spells, but can also store seemingly unlimited amounts of knowledge, both past and future, and gives you the ability to write whatever you want in it for other wielders of the tome to read. It sounds less cool when you realize the drawback is instant, unavoidable servitude to an elder god and automatic enlistment into a cosmic war that you have to take part in, which is very likely to cost you your sanity, your life, or worse.²** There is also the case with [[spoiler:cursed Anthony]]. He can't die, making especially the boss fight at the end mostly just time consuming, but otherwise incredibly easy. But he is incredibly slow and [[spoiler:rotting alive before being nothing but a zombie guard that barely resembles the young man he had once been]].²* BraggingRightsReward: Eternal Mode, unlocked with HundredPercentCompletion, gives you invincibility and infinite ammo. Since you've already beaten the game three times just to get it, there's really no use for it unless you care to play the game again for kicks.²* BreakableWeapons: Happens often with minor items needed to solve puzzles, and only once with an actual weapon. The first magic spell you learn is one that fixes broken items, though. Items break at plot-specific points though, so there's no damage meter or anything for them.²* BrokeYourArmPunchingOutCthulhu: It takes several punches and several broken arms before any dents are noticed.²* BuffySpeak: The Bankorok (protect) rune is referred to as "The squiggly circle thing" [[spoiler:by the ghostly Edward when he appears to help Alex bind the Ancient she summons.]]²* BuriedAlive: The Pillar of Flesh in Persia and Roberto's demise within. One of the hallucinations has the character sink into the ground.²* BurnTheWitch: How the Roivas family was largely treated after immigrating to America from the Mediterranean region.²* ButThouMust:²** You'll be asked several times to make a choice, such as "Do you want to read this [[TomeOfEldritchLore book?,]]" "Should you turn this wheel?" or "Do you want to go through the door?" Every single one needs to be answered with a hearty "Yes" to continue with the story. It's here so that you have a chance to stop yourself from mindlessly rushing onwards with the plot before you're ready.²** "Should [Character] claim the Tome of Eternal Darkness?" No. No, he really shouldn't, especially considering what happened to everyone else who did it. But since your other option is to wander around the mausoleum of creepy statues suspended in a void of blackness with a floor that has a habit of screaming, you might as well.²** Also happens if you try to leave an area (e.g. Oublie Cathedral). You'll get a message telling you why your character can't or won't leave.²** In one particular moment, after Karim has used the Tome to open a gated door, the game literally will not ''let you move at all'' until you pick the book back up²* TheButlerDidIt: Inverted in Maximillian's story.²* CameraAbuse: Sometimes, when someone has low sanity and is carrying a gun, he will randomly fire it. Once in a blue moon, he will turn to face you and then fire his gun, putting a "bullet hole" in the "screen."²* CastFromSanity: Summon spells gradually cause the player to go insane.²* TheChosenOne:²** Deconstructed. [[spoiler:All of the characters, including Pious, have been feeding into Mantorok's plot this whole time, under the guise of saving the world (which they undeniably did) but their fate under Mantorok might not be terribly dissimilar.]] Even before the HundredPercentCompletion ending comes into play, [[spoiler:the only way Alex can conquer an Ancient is to summon the opposing Ancient into this world, which wants to dominate the planet just as much as Pious' lord.]]²** Played generally straight with the enchanted Gladius, which only the Guardian of Light can wield. Although all of the Tome-bearing characters are chosen to defend humanity, [[spoiler:Alex]] is the only one with an official heroic title.²* CognizantLimbs: Averted slightly in that you can specifically target the head or arms of ''all'' enemies, and only two of 26 enemy types generally bother regrowing lost limbs.²* CollectorOfTheStrange: The Roivases. A hidden chamber inside their mansion houses the Tome, as well as portraits and artifacts taken from each location significant to the Ancients and Pious.²* ColourCodedCharacters: Chattur'gha is red, Ulyaoth is blue, Xel'lotath is green, and Mantorok is purple, with some random yellow enemies which WordOfGod says are aligned to a fifth Ancient never seen in-game. Their respective spells, glyphs, and minions are tinted appropriately.²* ConspicuousCG: The game often betrays its UsefulNotes/{{Nintendo 64}} origins, such as Edward's corpse being a very obvious texture being zoomed in on rather than a fully rendered model; similarly, the wilderness Anthony runs towards once the scroll's curse has zapped him.²* CorruptChurch: Oublie Cathedral.²* CosmicHorrorStory: A few deviations on what's expected from the genre but still fits in neatly.²* CreepyCathedral: Oublie Cathedral is this, especially when it's being used as a field hospital for the wounded in the [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI Battle of the Somme.]] The catacombs, however, are where the real [[EldritchAbomination nightmares]] are to be found.²* CreepyGood: Mantorok had been worshipped as a benevolent fertility god for millennia. It's hard to say how "good" he is, except in comparison to the other three Ancients.²* CruelMercy: When Edward starts investigating the Tome of Eternal Darkness, Pious says that he "will not be so merciful" with Edward as he had been with Maximillian. That "mercy" was to allow Maximillian to suffer a slow, agonizing death in an asylum rather than die quickly.²* CrutchCharacter: Rather, Crutch Item. The two (killable) characters who will not have access to a healing spell both have limited use healing items.²* CurbStompBattle: The battle between Paul and the Black Guardian [[spoiler:is the literal example of this (except for one guardian),]] and the Ancient's battles, especially Chattur'gha vs. Ulyaoth.²* CuriosityKilledTheCast:²** Pious sets off the entire chain of events when investigating some voices calling to him.²** Ellia gets herself trapped in a temple looking for adventure, while Anthony contracts a deadly curse by peeking on a scroll meant for Charlemagne. Averted with Lindsey. While his curiosity as an archaeologist does lead him to the temple, he's one of the four characters to survive his ordeal.²* DarkWorld: The Trapper Dimension. Thankfully, it's really simple to escape, and even a boon to savvy players.²* DashedPlotLine: The game consists of various people, recorded in the Tome of Eternal Darkness who've fought against the Ancients at different points in history with varying success.²* DeadManWriting: Edward. Technically, everybody except for Alex.²* DeflectorShields: The "Damage Field" spell; the enemies' usage of it usually blocks off some hallway and must be dispelled to proceed with a given chapter's plot. You do it to give you a safe place to catch your breath or pilot minions from.²* DevelopersForesight:²** In Edward's chapter, the portraits of the Roivas family and the dialogues of the servants change as his sanity gets lower; however, at that point of the chapter, the only way to lower your sanity enough to see these effects is by summoning more enemies and then fighting them, which you probably didn't think to do until now.²** Saving the nurse at the start of Peter's chapter (difficult, but possible) will result in a special low-sanity reaction if he tries to talk to her, though [[SubvertedTrope she still has her original reaction if you heal it back up.]]²* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: Played with.[[spoiler:It is the efforts of Alex and the others who foil the Ancients, but they never could have done it without Mantorok’s help. It’s basically “Did you and Nyarlathotep punch out Cthulhu together?”]]²* DisneyOwnsThisTrope: Creator/{{Nintendo}} [[ patented]] the various fourth wall breaking sanity effects.²* DivideAndConquer: The "Bind" spell.²* DodgeTheBullet: Bonethieves are exceptionally good at this when they're just milling around. You have to wait for them to attempt a lunge before you can be guaranteed a hit.²* DoWellButNotPerfect: Gamers who obsessively try to keep their stats topped off at all times will miss out on the eerie, fourth wall breaking sanity effects that are perhaps the game's most unique feature. If you want to see the various sanity effects, you have a pretty strong incentive to keep your sanity low. Just be warned that if you run completely out of sanity, enemy sightings end up draining ''life'' instead.²* DurableDeathtrap: Though somewhat justified, as revealed to players of an Ulyaoth game.²* DutchAngle: The angle of the third person camera became progressively more skewy as your Sanity Meter decreased.²* EarlyBirdBoss: The first Horror fought by a killable PC is encountered before any of the spells that make Horrors easy to deal with (Shield and dominant alignment / Mantorok enchant), and the character's only non limited weapon (the limited throwing weapon isn't much better due to the small room it is fought in) has range that makes hitting its head tricky and stands a good chance of killing the player. Even later Horrors encountered before getting those spells in the same level are easier due to a much better weapon being acquired.²* EldritchAbomination: Exactly ''what'' the Ancients are, where they come from, or why they do what they do is left largely unanswered. However many there are isn't specified but there is evidence for no more than five and four of them are doing a good job of keeping encounters with human beings to a minimum. And if a human does encounter a mere remnant of evidence one exists, four times out of five it will be a fatal experience, and the rest of the time it will still be horrific.²* ElementalRockPaperScissors: Three meters -- Health, Sanity, and Magic; three corresponding Eldritch Abominations. Respectively; Body, Mind, and Soul, which is the theme of each Abomination. Mantorok is the "[[InfinityPlusOneElement Nuke]]" option for this. The game keeps being fun, however.²* TheEndOfTheWorldAsWeKnowIt: Each of the big three will bring about the collapse of civilization upon arrival. [[spoiler:Unless they meet direct opposition from another.]]²* EnemyMine: The Chosen and Mantorok work together in order to combat the other three Ancients. Interestingly, the game may actually {{subvert|edTrope}} this, because although Mantorok seems to be dark and evil, he's portrayed as the opposite in-game, most notably in murals at Angkor Thom. The natives viewed him [[GodIsGood as a gracious and good fertility god, and loved him.]] In addition, he, unlike the [[SealedEvilInACan other Ancients,]] actually had a physical manifestation on this plane of existence for an unknown thousand of years, without ever harming the human race, which is better than what it's shown that the others would do by far.²* EverythingFades: Enemies aligned with the Ancients disappear to another dimension with a crashing sound after being killed. Regular corpses stay right where they are, however, excepting the Tome bearers in scripted events.²* EvilSoundsDeep: The voice that recites the runes when you cast a Chattur'gha spell, is one of the deepest, most guttural voices ever. It makes casting spells so much cooler.²* EvilVersusEvil: To defeat an Ancient, you have to summon another Ancient that has an advantage against it. Of course, summoning a great evil to destroy a great evil doesn't exactly solve the problem facing humanity. [[spoiler:The secret ending reveals that the entire series of events has been manipulated by Mantorok as a ploy to have the Ancients destroy each other, leaving him unopposed.]]²* EvolvingAttack: Once you pick up the Pargon ("Power") rune and 5/7 point Circles of Power, you can manually boost the ''oomph'' of any given magic spell by just loading it down with Pargons, at the obvious cost of it taking more MP and time to cast. Moreover, since the bad guys use the same magic system the heroes do, [[spoiler:Pious starts throwing down 9 point spells that consist of three ordinary runes and ''six'' Pargons.]]²* FinishingMove: Performing this on an enemy revitalizes your SanityMeter -- [[CatharsisFactor probably because such a decisive way of enforcing your will upon the world is therapeutic for the mind,]] not to mention the satisfaction of ridding the world of a horror that should not be. It's advisable to use a finishing move on nearly every enemy, unless you enjoy hallucinating as you walk around from loss of Sanity. Of course, you can't inflict a finishing move on all your enemies.²* FlashbackCut: Anybody who claims the Tome of Eternal Darkness spontaneously experiences quick moments in the histories of previous and future owners; it may be a quick representation of them reading the Tome.²* FlashForward: Due to the game's AnachronicOrder, the aforementioned FlashbackCut is sometimes about a character from the chronological future. May lead to moments of FridgeLogic. For example, Michael's chapter comes just after Edward's, the last page of which representing his murder 48 years later. Michael sees this, then meets Edward shortly before his death, and he won't warn him.²* FlavorText: Seen throughout the game. One of the best examples is the titular Tome of Eternal Darkness: ²-->"Cradled in what appears to be a leathery hand lies a mysterious book. It is bound in human skin and intricately decorated with shrunken bones. It beckons and yearns to be possessed."²* FlipPersonality: Xel'lotath has two personalities that act like this. Some other people may appear this way too, but that just means your sanity meter is too low.²* FlyingBooks: One of the sanity effects in the library.²* {{Foreshadowing}}:²** Maximillian has a sanity effect where he's stuck in an enclosed space: An asylum room, which is where he ends up later.²** One Sanity Effect sometimes places characters in the past somewhere in a ''future'' character's version of events (Paul in Peter's version of the Cathedral, where there are medical tents).²* TheFourthWallWillNotProtectYou: The sanity effects which target the player.²* FunctionalMagic: Mainly force magic, tapping into the power of the ancients. They usually take a passive role in casting and there are many rules to follow. For example, the player can make use of SummonMagic but needs to apply additional mentalism or barriers if they do not intend to eventually fight what is brought forth. Most enemies engage in a mild bit of mentalism as well, it being the mains cause of your draining sanity meter. BloodMagic is not used onscreen but is speculated on.²* GambitRoulette: Spanning millennia [[spoiler:and three different time streams. You need to see the best ending to learn this.]]²* GameplayAndStoryIntegration: A lot of the characters' stats actually reflect their personalities and dispositions quite well.²** Alex is a JackOfAllStats with very high magic regeneration and pretty good stamina. This is mostly because she's the final recipient of the Tome of Eternal Darkness and thus has all its power at her disposal as well as being in her physical prime.²** Edward is a SquishyWizard with terrible stamina, low health, but extremely high sanity and magic bars. He's a scholar, not a warrior, but his study of psychology means he's hardened to madness to the point where he was actually ''excited'' to start studying his family's odd history of mental illness.²** Pious is a LightningBruiser immune to sanity effects. He's a career soldier of a powerful empire so of course he doesn't bat an eye at monsters. Furthermore, being the first person recorded in the Tome means he never added to its arcane knowledge so he has no magic meter.²** Ellia is fast but has a tiny health bar and no magic. She's just a normal girl so she doesn't fight, she runs. She never learns any spells either [[spoiler:which is partially why she's mortally wounded by magic.]]²** Anthony can dish out and take damage with the best of them due to being a trained swordsman as well as a cursed undead.²** Karim has the largest health bar in the game. After all, he would have to be resilient to search for an entire year in the Persian desert.²** Maximilian, being a middle-aged, overweight man, is not fast, but he can still pack a punch.²** Lindsay has the highest sanity bar in the game, likely a result of his travels and fits with his CrazyPrepared nature to the point where he's well-armed in addition to having tools to look for clues.²** Paul is a SquishyWizard with high magic and sanity, but low health and stamina. The latter are likely due to his strong faith, even carrying a staff that can help him regain sanity.²** Bianchi is sturdy, but his magic is extremely low. He's an architect during the Renaissance when science began overtaking mysticism.²** Peter has high magic but extremely low health and the smallest sanity meter in the game. He's just a war correspondent, not a soldier, and the horrors of the war have left him shell-shocked.²** Michael is sturdy but has low magic and sanity. His job of course requires fortitude, but the combination of the Gulf War, stressful occupation, and then being thrust into an abandoned, underground city full of eldritch horrors would make anyone edgy and he's living in a time where superstition has plummeted.²* GetBackHereBoss: It takes a while of chasing the thing around before you actually get to ''fight'' the vampire in Edward's chapter.²* GiantMook: Horrors, which are pretty damn... [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Horrific.]] Even if one is not hostile toward you or does not notice your presence, you can still get hurt by simply touching or getting close to one.²* GlowingEyesOfDoom: When an enemy spots a player character.²* GoMadFromTheRevelation: Inverted in that looking at monsters has no ill effects. It's when [[GlowingEyesOfDoom they discover you]] that it goes to crap, as your sanity can be drained if you never even look at one. Also, Maximillian's sanity was already suspect before he discovered plotting Bonethieves.²* GondorCallsForAid: In the final battle, [[spoiler:the ghosts of everyone who died[[labelnote:*]]or in Maximillian's case, met an ignoble end[[/labelnote]] while possessing the Tome of Eternal Darkness appears. Each one gets to strike a blow against Pious' artifact.]]²* GoodMorningCrono: Although Alex starts the game fighting an infinite number of zombies in a nightmare before she actually gets around to waking up.²* GrossUpCloseUp: The infamous bathtub scene does this abruptly, and several of the corpses of [=NPCs=] get cut to with close-up shots like this, particularly when Bonethieves are involved. The camera also zooms in on Anthony each time he starts getting up after another wave of his curse hits him, and by the last instance the effect is pretty disturbing.²* GuestStarPartyMember: With 11 guest stars. Since this isn't an RPG, there's no party involved, but the game hits most portions of this regardless.²* GuideDangIt:²** The {{Permanently Missable|Items}} items, especially the Mantorok rune, which is easy to miss, but only in the sense that the game doesn't prevent you from progressing without it. Some of the codices that give you the names of the runes and the formulae can be this. Even knowing that a rune codex or spell scroll will always be in the first chapter that requires the spell's use isn't always enough to know where to find the exact spider web that covers the tablet is.²** Although spell scrolls can be missed, the spell itself can be manually created if the correct rune combination is known (especially the Magick Pool spell).²** After completing Roberto's chapter, it isn't immediately obvious what you're supposed to do next, as you didn't learn any magick that would help open more of the mansion up to exploration. And if you rush out of the Tome's room straightaway to go investigating, you'll miss [[spoiler:the sound of crumbling debris which indicated a survey site for Roberto]].²* GunsAreWorthless:²** Averted, once you start controlling characters who exist in an era where gunpowder weapons are used, anyway. Not only that, but playable characters from eras where guns are used [[spoiler:tend to be the ones who survive their chapter, although in Maximilian's case "survival" was a CruelMercy... UsefulNotes/WorldWarI era Peter survived to a ripe old age. Edward, though eventually killed by a Guardian many years after his venture, did survive his initial encounters and lived on to be the go-to guy if you had one of the [=MacGuffins=]. Lindsey from the 1980's survived, Michael of the UsefulNotes/GulfWar successfully delivered the [=MacGuffin=] to Edward and is still alive at the end of his chapter (though his eventual fate is left ambiguous), and of course, Alex survives in all the endings of the game.]]²** Maximillian's guns are pretty worthless given that they have to be reloaded after every shot. Having two flintlock pistols at once seems like a good idea until you discover how ''helpless'' you are while reloading. Better to stick with the saber.²* HeWhoMustNotBeSeen: The fifth, yellow Ancient, responsible for the damage floors in Ehn'gha and the Forbidden City, as well as the magic affecting Anthony's curse. Denis Dyack later [[WordOfGod confirmed]] his existence.²* HealingPotion:²** Peter can find Magickal Elixirs which restore his ManaMeter.²** Karim and Ellia have items which cast healing spells when used.²** Edward has his flask of liquid courage, which restores his sanity.²** Paul has a limited use meditation rod that can be used to completely restore his sanity.²* HearingVoices:²** Pious was initially lured to the Ancient's temple by voices beckoning him.²** Right at the beginning you hear occasional nonsense whispers while walking around the mansion. These happen before you start to lose your SanityMeter.²** Once it does empty, the most common hallucinations are hearing windchimes and someone crying (sometimes preceeded by the sound of knives being sharpened).²* HelpfulMook: Trappers. They can't actually hurt you; all they do is teleport you to an alternate dimension with free healing pads for the cost of not being able to use magic. Though, you might end up running into a few zombies and horrors while there.²* HistoricalDomainCharacter: Emperor UsefulNotes/{{Charlemagne}} factors into the plot of Anthony's chapter and makes a very brief appearance in it. [[spoiler:As a corpse.]]²* HoistByHisOwnPetard:²** The giant stakes with which Pious skewered Mantorok were fueled by magic of Mantorok's own alignment.²** The Black Guardian. NighInvulnerable. Nothing usually even phases it, only bothers. It also recharges periodically. The solution? When it's recharging, [[ToxicPhlebotinum add to the energy the element it is weak to.]]²** The Enchanted Gladius. Implied to be the same weapon which Pious used in the first chapter, and you use it [[spoiler:to send him to Hell.]]²* HollywoodTorches: Six characters get access to a torch as a weapon. They come lit, never run out of fuel, and (except in Lindsey's case), they're usually redundant in terms of lighting the general area. ''Incredibly'' useful for [[KillItWithFire igniting Xel'lotath's and Mantorok's zombies,]] though.²* HourglassPlot: For Alex and Pious; his downfall ultimately begins with her inheriting the Tome, and by the end, [[spoiler:Alex (and the rest of the Tome bearers) is the servitor of one of the Ancients and has succeeded in summoning another into the world. To think, they were once fools.]]²* HubLevel: The Roivas mansion in Alex's time. It's more like a regular level in some chapters, particularly Maximilian's.²* IdentificationByDentalRecords: Alex is appalled that the Rhode Island police brought her in to identify Edward's body, asking why dental records weren't used. The reason? Edward's head is missing.²* IdleAnimation: One of gaming's most versatile examples. The different characters all idle in different ways, and the idle method changes depending on what weapon they're currently equipped with, if any. Even if characters share a weapon (Alex and Pious both wield a Gladius, for instance), they'll toy with them in separate ways.²* ImmuneToBullets: Go ahead, shoot the Black Guardian and see what it has to say about it.²* ImproperlyPlacedFirearms: The OICW wasn't even a concept in 1991; Michael probably should instead have picked up a CAR-15 Colt Commando with an M203 slung underneath. [[spoiler:This is possibly deliberate: Michael is the only one of the protagonists to be given direct instructions by Mantorok, who has powers over time, and the Forbidden City is well known for its ability to draw people in with magic.]]²* InfinityMinusOneSword: The double edged sword, if obtained by Anthony, is usable by two other characters who have a very painful time without it. Peter notably has ''no'' other melee weapon able to finish off something, though given his repertoire of magickal spells and his large mana pool, to say nothing of his BFG and large supply of ammo, he might not need one.²* InfinityPlusOneElement: The Mantorok rune. With it, you'll almost never need to use the other elements again.²* InfinityPlusOneSword: The Enchanted Gladius, which can be ''[[ThrowingYourSwordAlwaysWorks thrown.]]''²* InstantRunes: When casting a spell glyphs will appear around you and then light up one by one, and are read by the Ancient whose power you're invoking.²* InterfaceScrew: Ten of the 37 potential hallucinations caused by a low Sanity meter mess directly with the player (instead of their player character), ranging from a subtle bug crawling around on the game screen to a sudden Game Over message promising a sequel.²* InvisibleMonsters: The vampire, there is also a room in Eng'ha that has invisible trappers.²* ItemCrafting: With magic instead of items.²* ItemGet: Taken UpToEleven, as each location has its own fanfare music.²* InThatOrder: In a Xel'lotath aligned playthrough, in the prelude cutscene to Chapter 3, Xel'lotath orders Pious to: "Make sure [Charlemagne] is dead... Or insane... Or perhaps one, then the other?" In fact, doing those in the order given turns out to be definitely possible.²* IveNeverSeenAnythingLikeThisBefore: The detective at the start of the game when Alex accuses him of being incompetent... For a start.²* JackOfAllStats: Alex, Anthony, and Lindsey, although each is above average in one of their stats.²** Alex has a fairly large magick meter and her MP regenerates twice as fast as all other characters.²** Anthony [[spoiler:is a zombie,]] and thus is effectively unkillable. If he dies, he just gets back up again.²** Lindsey has the largest sanity meter in the game.²* JumpScare: The only one in the game is a one time insanity effect. Alex looks in a bathtub full of blood to find a pale, apparently dead version of herself. After a loud scream and a series of zoom-in flashes, it disappears.²* KillItWithFire: The oil fires in Michael's chapter, which he attempts to snuff out using "80% nitroglycerin grade dynamite."²%%** The Mantorok and Xel'lotath zombies.²* KillEmAll: Almost no one gets to die of natural causes in this game. Even most of the survivors are implied to be hunted for the rest of their lives.²* KilledOffForReal: Every character that isn't from the 20th century, plus Edward. Though this doesn't stop them from [[SpiritAdvisor helping out]] [[UnfinishedBusiness on occasion.]]²* LampshadeHanging: A Magick Attack scroll, hanging on a wall:²-->"Peter has acquired the "Magickal Attack" Spell Scroll! Why would it be here, of all places? Here, in this corridor?"²* LandmarkOfLore: Angkor Thom in Cambodia, as well as the five monolithic stones inscribed with Ancient runes that transport Chosen to the Forbidden City.²* LargeHam: [[Film/ANewHope William Hootkins']] performance as Maximillian is a [[ joy to]] [[ listen to.]] Pious is also impressively bombastic:²-->'''Pious:''' I am the scourge of God, appointed to chastise you, since no one knows the remedy for your iniquity except me. You are wicked, but I am more wicked than you. So be '''SILENT!'''²* LateToTheTragedy: Alex shows up after her grandfather is already dead [[spoiler:along with everyone else, leaving her as the only one who can stop Pious' summoning, which is just about to start.]]²* LawOfInverseRecoil: {{Averted|Trope}}. Don't spend enough time bracing yourself and the Elephant Gun will knock Edward flat on his ass.²* {{Letterbox}}: When played with widescreen support switched on, every cutscene is windowboxed (briefly pillarboxed when the Tome of Eternal Darkness is shown). Understandable for the full motion video which is already very grainy from the high compression, a bit less so with scenes using the game engine.²* LifeMeter: Not consistent among the characters, and slows you down when it gets too low.²* LockAndKeyPuzzle: From the start you are likely to run into a locked door. Nearly every chapter has some sort of lock-and-key puzzle, whether literal or figurative.²* LongGame: Pious' plan spans all the way from his corruption in 26 B.C. to the present day, accumulating enough power over two millennia to summon his Ancient to our reality, doing what he can to destabilize civilization in the process. [[spoiler:Mantorok's own plan goes for just as long and is ''still'' incomplete as of the game's ending.]]²* LosingYourHead: One of the sanity effects is your character's head spontaneously falling off. Can lead to an AlasPoorYorick if the player picks up the head: It starts reciting ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}.''²* LovecraftLite: An interesting example. On one hand multiple heroes are driven insane and/or killed, the Ancient's plans go unstopped for ages, and overall the tone is dark and almost hopeless. [[spoiler: But then suddenly several characters successfully start ruining the Ancient's plans, reveal that older characters were able to hinder them in some way as well, and then in the finale [[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu you KILL one of the Ancients!]] Furthermore playing through the game twice more allows you to destroy the other two ancients, leaving one left [[MysteriousBacker who has in fact been helping you the entire time]]. All in all, a pretty darn optimistic eldritch horror story.]]²* MadLibsDialogue: "Kneel before my master <<INSERT NAME HERE>>!" Doesn't happen much, though; most cutscenes featuring the specific Ancient being opposed have three versions, one for each Ancient, with entirely different dialogue. Avoiding this also extends beyond dialogue: Events, enemy placement, and nature of some of the puzzles in the game change greatly depending on the Ancient.²* {{Magick}}: Because just spelling it as "magic" is apparently too lighthearted for a game with {{Eldritch Abomination}}s.²* ManaMeter: Different sizes and recharge rates for everyone (that has one).²* {{Masquerade}}: Upholding it is a prime concern of the ancients, since they need followers to let them into the game world.²* MeaningfulEcho: "To think, that once I could not see beyond the veil of our reality, to see those who dwell behind."²* MeaningfulName:²** See SdrawkcabName below about "Roivas." "Ellia" means "[[TheChosenOne chosen one,]]" and Paul, Peter, and Michael are all biblical names. "Karim" means "generous" or "noble." "Edwin" means "rich / blessed friend," and Roberto / Robert means "bright fame," which he was looking for abroad until getting captured (and ultimately achieved in the [[AndIMustScream worst possible way]]). "Pious" means "doing one's duty with enthusiastic devotion" (again, in the [[TheDragon worst possible way]]), though as a name, it's spelled "Pius." Alexandra is the feminine form of "Alexander," which means "defender of mankind," and for all of Pious's EvilGloating about how long he's lived, UsefulNotes/AlexanderTheGreat lived three hundred years before he was born. "Maximillian" derives from the Latin word "maximus," which means "the greatest," and Edward means "rich / blessed guardian." "Anthony" is the name of the patron saint of [[BodyHorror skin diseases]] and [[OurZombiesAreDifferent gravediggers,]] and is the English form of the Latin name "Antonius," which was the nomen of the clan or gens Antonia. The first of the Antonii to gain fame was Titus Antonius Merenda, who, in 450 B.C., was one of ten men who helped to complete the Law of the Twelve Tables, which formed the basis of Roman law, and thus the foundation for much of the common law of Western Europe as well. In a less obscure reference, Mark Antony was the ArchEnemy of the first Roman emperor, best known as... Gaius Augustus.²** Spell Ehn'gha backwards and you get a phonetic way to spell "agony."²* MergedReality: [[spoiler:The true ending: you've played through the game three times, with a different Ancient being defeated each time, but the other two being left at large. In the true ending, these three timelines are merged, creating one where all Ancients are defeated.]]²* MindRape: Getting spotted by a zombie, horror, bonethief, Gatekeeper or other guardian results in them getting GlowingEyesOfDoom and your character going utterly nutterly-butterly.²* MindScrew: A lot of the sanity effects.²* MinorCrimeRevealsMajorPlot: It all starts with Alex investigating the murder of her grandfather, but things soon get much worse than that...²* MookBouncer: Trappers, but they're blind and can usually be crept around.²* MookMaker: {{Inverted|Trope}}, as the ''player character'' gains the ability to create mooks by the halfway point just like the bosses. Mooks the player creates will still have to be killed after control over them is released though.²* MoonLogicPuzzle: One of the puzzles has a hint to the effect that you have to find "88 keys" to continue; up to that point, the only keys you've encountered are the kind that open locks, and the hint implies that you have to open another lock, so it's not exactly obvious that the hint was referring to [[spoiler:a piano.]]²* MultiMookMelee: Karim has to deal with a couple of these. Luckily he's a LightningBruiser who can [[DualWielding dual wield]] or use a {{BFS}}. Unfortunately, he may not have a healing spell yet.²* MultipleEndings: One standard ending with three distinct variations and one secret ending that you have to defeat the game three times (defeating all three Ancients) to see.²* TheMultiverse: After you beat the game three times, earning the secret ending, you find out [[spoiler:each time you beat the game, it was with an incarnation of Alex from different universes. Essentially defeating Mantorok's enemies across multiple realities.]]²* MundaneUtility: Enchanted weapons glow, making the torch redundant except for killing the two types of zombies weak to fire. This [[GameplayAndStorySegregation doesn't stop Alex from needing to reset the circuit breaker to look around a dark room though.]]²* MyDeathIsJustTheBeginning: TropeNamer.²* MysteriousBacker: Mantarok. Sure it's the only one of the Ancients who isn't planning to enter the world and run amok, is actively opposing the others and even spent some time serving as a small village's personal fertility god. On the other hand, it's hardly in a position to oppose humanity and after [[spoiler:masterminding the destruction of the other three Ancients, who knows what it's planning.]]²* NestedStory: Every time we follow a chapter that focuses on a character that isn't Alex. If you remember, the game starts with the Tome of Eternal Darkness opening to her chapter: "Death in the Family," so every chapter she reads is part of her own personal chapter.²* NewGamePlus: Required to get the [[MultipleEndings best ending.]] Successful completion of the game records the completion, including the alignment of the dominant Ancient (Pious' master), cutscenes completed and autopsies completed during the Maximillian chapter, all of which can be rewatched (it can be very entertaining to be see the differences in conversations based on the alignment of those involved). [[spoiler:Completing the game three times, once per dominant Ancient, gives you the OneHundredPercentCompletion bonuses, including "Eternal Mode", a chapter by chapter playthrough with GodMode and everything unlocked.]]²* NonStandardGameOver: ²** Losing in the final battle results in a cutscene of [[spoiler:Pious taunting Alex and spitting on her]].²** Dying as Pious in the very first chapter results in a different game over message than with any of the other characters because none of the plot (even the prologue) can happen without him.²* NotUsingTheZWord: Averted on one end, as Maximillian's MonsterCompendium entries record basic minions as zombies, but also inverted. Pious and his minions refer to humans as "flesh and bone," thereby objectifying them as resources to be used.²* NothingIsScarier:²** Wandering around the Roivas mansion as Alex between chapters is quite creepy, even though (outside of one instance) nothing tries to attack her until close to the end of the game. The fact that [[SuspiciousVideoGameGenerosity she finds weapons right from the beginning, as well as finding better weapons several times,]] and that Maximillian's chapter takes place in the same house leads the player to expect to be attacked at every turn.²** When your sanity is low, sometimes you might try to open a door only to hear the "locked" sound with no message saying that the door is locked; usually, this happens when a sanity effect is about to occur, but sometimes you just have to wait a few seconds and then try again to open the door. In other words, there is a sanity effect where all the doors to the room are locked, but ''nothing else happens,'' not even the flash of light or the cry of "This isn't really happening!"²** Lampshaded by Maximillian in his diary: "I have learned to fear nothing, although it is nothing that I most fear."²* NoticeThis: A combination of the characters focusing their attention on collectible objects, and the objects in question faintly glowing.²* OffWithHisHead: One method of dealing with zombies and Horrors. In fact, it's the fastest and (in the case of Ulyaoth aligned zombies) safest way to defeat them.²* OhCrap:²** Peter has this reaction when he realizes that [[spoiler:The Black Guardian is shrinking his barriers during their fight.]]²** Lindsey gets one too, when he shoots Paul Augustine in the chest and doesn't even slow him down.²* OminousFog: The sign that there is a gate keeper guardian in the immediate area.²* OminousLatinChanting: Heard among the background music for the Forbidden City, and also used in the holy choir variety whenever an object is collected in Oublie Cathedral.²* OneBulletClips: Averted with most characters, who must hand feed their rounds into their firearms' chambers, and then played completely straight with Lindsey and Michael's modern, magazine fed firearms, when the player opts to manually reload.²* OneSteveLimit: Paul Augustine and Paul Luther. Also Edward Roivas and Michael Edwards, and, if you squint, Edwin Lindsey.²* OrbitingParticleShield: The shield spell surrounds the user with tiny floating particles which fly in the way of anything that would hit the user and expand into a shield to block it. Properly cast, a shield can take seven hits but gate keeper guardians will drop any shield in one hit.²* OurMonstersAreDifferent²* OurDemonsAreDifferent: Trappers, Bonethieves, Horrors, lesser guardians and Gatekeepers are all minor {{Eldritch Abomination}}s aligned with the head Blasphemous Alien God they represent. Chattur'gha Gatekeepers even look like steteotypical demons.²* OurGhostsAreDifferent: Ghosts of the Chosen seem to have the ability to maintain hold of physical objects, even when hidden within physical objects themselves.²* OurLichesAreDifferent: Pious is an undead sorcerer kept alive by his magickal connection to the relic that turned him into a Lich in the first place. Ellia, too, is kept alive by her magickal connection to the Heart of Mantorok, and vanishes into dust when she (willingly) severs that connection.²* OurVampiresAreDifferent: An invisible, vaguely humanoid creature with four jaws. It sucks blood by magicking it out of people, and turns them into zombies.²* PaletteSwap: Played straight with the Trappers, but averted with all other monsters; although they are ColorCodedForYourConvenience, they all have different physical appearances as well.²* ParasiteZombie: Bonethieves climb into the chest cavity of humans and puppeteer them around. They can also do this to zombies, giving you a nasty surprise when you kill it. Killing a hostile human nearly always spawns a bonethief, except in Edward's chapter.²* PastelChalkedFreezeFrame: The Chapter Complete segments.²* PermanentlyMissableContent: ²** While you need certain spells to advance the plot, you can discover them on your own without the codices or the scrolls, and if you don't get those codices and scrolls in the chapters in which they're available, they're permanently missable. ²** Ellia's chapter: The Short Sword after it breaks, if you fail to save the guard in the sublevel of the temple.²** Anthony's chapter: The Two-Edged Sword, if you fail to save the monk in the first sublevel of the catacombs.²** Karim's chapter: The Ruby Statuette.²** Maximilian's chapter: The autopsies.²** Edwin's chapter: The Mantorok rune and codex.²** Roberto's chapter: The Sapphire Statuette.²** Edward's chapter: The Elephant Gun, if you fail to save the servant in the master bedroom.²** Michael's chapter: The Enchanted Gladius.²* PersonalSpaceInvader: Bonethieves.²* PetTheDog: When Ellia is found in the tomb of Mantarok, Pious advises her to leave, lest she be eaten. He's not kind at all about it whatsoever, and later when he's certain she knows where the Essence of Mantarok is hidden he kills her, but given how readily he tends to kill or otherwise harm others, or even save them for sacrifice, it's odd to see that he's initially more than ready to just let her go back to her merry life, apparently.²* PlayingThePlayer: Several of the sanity effects do this.²* PoisonedWeapons: Ellia can get a blowgun with poisoned darts, which is good because the weapon does very little damage and gets no additional ammo. You can be sure the zombies you hit with it will die ''eventually.'' The Mantorok spells have a "decaying" effect that steadily damages enemies in a manner similar to video game poison but Gate Keeper guardians can turn the "poison" effect off.²* PoorPredictableRock: 90% of enemies you fight are aligned with one particular EldritchAbomination of three, so once you gain access to magic spells of the alignment that beats it in ElementalRockPaperScissors, instant buttkicking commences.²* PortalCut: How Ulyaoth ends up killing Chattur'gah.²* PowersThatBe: The ancients, especially the unseen yellow one.²* PowerTrio: The unholy trinity of Chattur'gah, Xel'lotath, and Ulyaoth are mortal enemies, but are still very closely associated.²* PressXToDie: The room with a large switch on the floor that, when stood on, causes a large stone slab to crash down on the switch, helpfully demonstrated by a Zombie wandering into this [[SchmuckBait trap]]. There is nothing to stop the player character from standing on the button.²* PunctuationShaker: Chattur'gha, Xel'lotath, and Ehn'gha.²* QuadDamage: Enchant item can become this with the correct alignment.²* RagnarokProofing: Justified: The {{big bad}} is maintaining two of the three locations that keep getting revisited over ~1000 years maintained (one of the chapters even involves a character being forced to work on said maintenance) while the other has a separate justification. Plus Amiens Cathedral still stands in the real world (the fact that Anthony's chapter (814 AD) takes place in it ''way'' before it being built in ~1220 is another story).²* RainbowSpeak: Done in the game's text when talking about key words in general, or items of interest relating to Chattur'gha, Ulyaoth, Xel'lotath, or Mantorok.²* RareGuns: Elephant Gun and OICW, anyone? The OICW would be even ''rarer'' by 1991 standards.²* RecklessGunUsage:²** During Maximillian's chapter, after he picks up two flintlock pistols, an insanity effect involves dropping one of them while reloading, [[IJustShotMarvinInTheFace killing him.]]²** If Lindsey's sanity is low, there's a chance he'll target his own foot when you aim.²** If Peter or Alex's sanity is low, there's a chance that they might [[BreakingTheFourthWall aim their gun at the fourth wall]] and put a bullethole in it.²* RecoiledAcrossTheRoom: In Edward's chapter, the player can find [[InfinityMinusOneSword the elephant gun]] if they rescue his servants from [[RoamingEnemy The Vampire]]. Because it's such a massive rifle and Edward's a fairly small guy, failing to let him brace himself before firing (by staying in the firing stance for a few seconds) will knock him flat on his ass.²* RevolversAreJustBetter: Averted. Revolvers suck in this game. You're better off with almost anything else, unless you want to get in a [[CherryTapping finishing blow.]]²* SacrificialLion: Not in short supply. Sometimes averted / subverted as people like Ellia and Karim manage to make a difference even after they're technically dead, but in cases like Anthony's or Paul's, it's played pretty damn straight.²* {{Safecracking}}: [[spoiler:In the basement during Alex's time.]]²* SanityMeter: TropeNamer, and TropeCodifier for the video game uses of it. As you encounter enemies, it goes down; once it gets low enough, freaky things start to happen. In '''and''' out of universe.²* SanitySlippage: Pretty much the entire point of the game, and a significant portion of the gameplay as well due to the Sanity Meter above.²* SayMyName:²** "Charlemaaagne..."²** Also, any time you cast a spell, the name of the runes are chanted, one of which is usually the name of the Ancient aligned to the required spell. The Forbidden City and Black Guardian have a habit of beckoning to Chosen, as well.²* SdrawkcabName:²** The Roivas family. "Savoir" is French for "knowledge".²** Ehn'gha roughly comes out to a pronunciation of "agony."²* SealedBadassInACan: Mantorok, after Pious binds him. Mantorok is also ambiguously SealedEvilInACan. Aside from [[spoiler:getting revenge on the other Ancients,]] not much light is shed on his motives, especially in regards to humanity.²* SecondaryFire: Mike's OICW doubles as a grenade launcher. It can also be set to fire single shot, burst, or full auto. Many other guns have alternate fires as well, usually limited to single / double barrel, however.²* SecretLegacy: The Roivas family, as said by Edward, has a long history of strange members such as Maximilian's mental illness and even being persecuted in witch hunts. Considering the Roivas mansion being built on top of the ruins of Ehn'gha as well as Maximilian's father Aaron knowing about the Ancients,[[WildMassGuessing it's possible their connection to the Tome of Eternal Darkness goes back even further.]]²* SequelHook: The game has some, including a [[SequelSnark fake one]] triggered by having low Sanity.²* SetPiecePuzzle: Most chapters have at least one set piece puzzle, and Alex usually needs to solve a similar puzzle in between chapters to find the next chapter page.²* ShapeShifter: Pious. Mantorok is thought to be one of these by Lindsey.²* SharePhrase: Almost every playable character has "[[SanitySlippage This. Isn't.]] [[PunctuatedForEmphasis Really. Happening!]]"²* ShootTheShaggyDog: With very few exceptions, every individual chapter is one of these, though subverted when considered the entire game, since the majority of the chapters accomplish something that eventually helps to defeat the Ancient.²* ShotgunsAreJustBetter: Averted, but not by much. As far as projectile weapons go they're 3rd in the game in power, behind Edward's [[{{BFG}} Elephant Gun]] and Mike's OICW. That being said, they're still damn good weapons.²* ShoutOut:²** Among the books in the Roivas mansion's library are the works of Creator/EdgarAllanPoe and Creator/HPLovecraft. At the end of his chapter, Max is put in the Jefferson Coombs Sanitarium, a shoutout to Creator/JeffreyCombs, who starred in several adaptations of Lovecraft's works. Also, the detective in the beginning is named Inspector Legrasse, a reference to one of the protagonists in ''TabletopGame/CallOfCthulhu.''²** Michael must construct a Staff of Ra and use it to reflect light through a center gemstone to aim a laser like beam of light onto a scale model of a city. Just like Indiana Jones did in ''Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk.''²** What does Maximillian say when you select the Chattur'gha Horror out of his autopsy notes? [[Literature/HeartOfDarkness "Oh, the Horror.]] [[Film/ApocalypseNow THE HORROR!"]]²** The fact the fifth Ancient (yellow) remains nameless is itself a shout out to [[spoiler:The King in Yellow, Hastur.]]²** Lindsey's chapter is clearly modeled after Indiana Jones: Set in an ancient temple full of pressure place triggered death traps, Edwin himself dresses similar to Indiana Jones and is an archaeologist. You have to pull off the weight replacement bit from the opener of the first movie swapping a metal bracelet with a silver bracelet of the same weight (except in Lindsey's case it actually works). Heck, Paul Augustine even ''looks'' like Arnold Ernst Toht from ''Raiders of the Lost Ark.''²** Edward explicitly name drops Sir James George Frazer and his comprehensive text: ''The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion.''²** [[Series/XenaWarriorPrincess Chakrams were not designed to return to the thrower's hand.]]²** The Ancients match both colors and states as the [[Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda Hyrule Goddesses,]] Chattu'gha matching Din, Uylotath matching Nayru, and Xel'lotath matching Farore.²* ShownTheirWork: ''Silicon Knights'' spent a ridiculous amount of time to make the game fit in with real life history as closely as possible; most weapons are era appropriate (and the few that aren't are justified as the equivalent of museum pieces) and most chapters coincide with major historical events.²** Even the cathedral in Amiens is an example of ShownTheirWork; it was built in the 1200s in real life (which in the game would place it between Anthony's and Paul's chapters); indeed, the only building on the future site of the cathedral in Anthony's time was a tower (specifically noted in Paul's chapter as being "old") with some catacombs underground. WordOfGod is that this was intentional.²* SinisterScrapingSound: The lower the sanity meter gets, the more of this you will likely hear.²* SmashingHallwayTrapsOfDoom: Angkor Thom has pressure point activate traps ranging from swinging blades, to toxic gas to literal smashing mechanisms. The forbidden city also has a smashing mechanism... [[HumanSacrifice That is required to make use of a door!]]²* SongsInTheKeyOfLock: There are three "locks" that are opened by playing an organ or a piano. (Technically there are two, one of which is opened twice.)²* SortingAlgorithmOfEvil: This is done over ''two thousand years!'' Not quite as bad as it sounds, the order in which the player goes through events is not the chronological one, so it could be reduced to between 1110-1800 years before they got their act together.²* SortingAlgorithmOfWeaponEffectiveness: With {{Magick}}. Averted in that you can discover useful combat spells far earlier than the game gives you the scrolls for them, by experimenting with rune combinations.²* SoulJar: Whichever Ancient's relic Pious picks up ultimately becomes a Soul Jar for him: Alex cannot defeat him until it's destroyed.²* SpellCrafting: There's a Rune System. Essentially, all you need are three types of Runes (Spell, Target, and Alignment) and you can mix and match them into whatever spell you want to create. Medallions called Circles of Power have a number of slots you can use to mix and match, from 3 to 5 to 7. If you have the right runes you can cast a spell even if it's not on your list, though there are only a certain number of valid combinations, usually in the form of "verb-noun-[power-up]-alignment" such as "Dispel-Area-Ulyaoth" or "Summon-Creature-Pargon-Pargon-Xel'lotath".²* {{Spinventory}}: Mostly just used to examine items closer in an aesthetic sense.²* SpiritualSuccessor: ''Shadow of the Eternals'' was supposed to be ''Eternal Darkness 2'' but for various reasons it never came to be.²* SprintMeter: Hidden from the eyes of the player, but it's there. After running for too long or aimlessly attacking with a melee weapon too many times, characters will start to stagger and gasp for breath eventually and they must walk or stop and catch their breath before they can resume. It varies from character to character. Michael, a fire fighter, can run for long distances and swing his fire-axe pretty rapidly without needing a break while Maximillian, an overweight physician, can only jog or swing his cutlass for a short period before he starts breathing heavily.²* SquishyWizard:²** Paul, a Franciscan monk. He has some of the lowest HP in the game and isn't particularly athletic. If a prior condition is met, he can obtain the Two-Edged Sword ''and'' wield it the most gracefully out of the three characters with access to it, but without it, apart from Magick, for combat, he's left with a low-damage ranged and short-reach melee weapon. [[spoiler:As a bonus, in two out of three routes, he even meets death by squishing.]]²** Peter is in better shape than Paul, but his health isn't much better. His covering WWI has [[SanityMeter left his brain a bit broken,]] and if he finds the Two-Edged Sword, he has the same problem Anthony had with it that Paul didn't -- it's heavy and difficult for a scrawny guy to wield. He has among the very best capacity for magic of the twelve though, necessary for a WizardDuel at his chapter's end. He even finds a unique item for the fight that instantly replenishes his entire mana meter. Edward has the smallest possible health bar, but he's got large sanity and magick meters in exchange -- magick which can be put to use enchanting his [[{{BFG}} Elephant Gun.]]²** A villainous example is Ulyaoth, who is ''literally'' squishy; he looks like a jellyfish.²* StaggeredZoom: A sanity effect.²* StandardStatusEffects: Poster child for the "Meta effect" thanks to the sanity meter.²* StartOfDarkness: The very first guest character is also TheDragon.²* StatusBuff: Four of twelve spells are buffs. Well, technically five if you Mantorok a Reveal Invisible spell.²* StupidityIsTheOnlyOption:²** "Should Paul claim the ''[[TomeOfEldritchLore Tome of Eternal Darkness?]]" Paul is a Franciscan monk. No, he really shouldn't claim an evil book of sorcery bound in human skin and found in an extradimensional mausoleum where the floor is made of the screaming souls of the damned, especially since he has been accused of murder and heresy. [[spoiler:Granted, it's Pious doing the accusing, but Paul has no way of knowing that at the time.]]²** Also, Pious, despite being an experienced fighter and quite cunning tactician is still compelled to grab an artifact that's defying the laws of physics and so powerful it radiates energy across the room with his bare hands, leading to his corruption and the events of the game to unfold. This is even avoided by all other characters in the game who claim an artifact, as they all feel the air itself become corrosive near it, and wrap it in some sort of fabric or protective housing. (To be fair, they all read the Tome of Eternal Darkness, so they all know what happened to Pious.)²* SummonBiggerFish: This constitutes much of the gameplay in the final level. [[spoiler:Naturally this leaves one of the Eldritch Abominations wandering around unopposed, so the ghost of Alex's grandfather has to subsequently [[SealedEvilInACan bind]] the Bigger Fish.]] Then in the [[HundredPercentCompletion Real Ending]] we learn that essentially [[spoiler:all three fish have swallowed themselves, because Mantorok has been [[ThePlan invoking this trope over a span of thousands of years, simultaneously, in three different timelines.]]]]²* SundialWaypoint: Twice, the first as mentioned in ShoutOut, the second in Alex's endgame chapter.²* SuspiciousVideoGameGenerosity:²** Just before Peter's duel with the black guardian, you encounter a door and receive a message telling you that absolute evil lurks on the other side of this door, gnawing away at your very soul. It then goes on to ask you, very innocently, if you would like to save your progress.²** One of the (in)sanity effects is to have the game drop a huge pile of fake ammo at your character's feet as they walk into a room.²* SwordOfPlotAdvancement: The Gladius for Alex and the Ram Dao for Karim are both needed (along with an enchantment of a certain alignment) to unlock a couple of doors.²* TalkingToHimself: If you have Ulyaoth be the main antagonist, Richard Doyle (who also voices Pious) will be speaking to himself, as he also voices Ulyaoth.²* TeleFrag: If you can master the timing, it's possible to do this to Horrors while in a Trapper dimension.²* TempleOfDoom: The Cambodian shrine that binds the Corpse God. Complete with trap filled corridors!²* TheseAreThingsManWasNotMeantToKnow: Comes with the Lovecraftian territory. Best exemplified in Max's autopsy reports.²* ThroughTheEyesOfMadness: A lot of what goes on in the game "isn't really happening" but just the same enough is. Maxamillian Roivas's chapter is the best example.²* TimeAbyss: The four Ancients are millennia old at the ''least.'' Pious lives to 2026 years old [[spoiler:before his death at the player's hands near the game's end.]]²* TimedMission: With an inevitable AlwaysClose afterward.²* TitleDrop: Several times, and not just when referring to the Tome:²-->'''Chandra:''' Without your sacrifice, the world will fall into eternal darkness!²* TomeOfEldritchLore: The semi-eponymous Tome of Eternal Darkness, an ancient text made from human skin and bones. Inside is the knowledge of millennia which includes eldritch spells and the fates of all who have ever come to possess it. Also, it seems to be able to hop across time and spontaneously appear to prospective recipients while at the same time having a physical form. You spend most of the game reading it and most of the time not reading it trying to find more pages.²* TookALevelInBadass: All of the characters once they find good weaponry and the Tome of Eternal Darkness.²* TranslationConvention: Pious and Anthony's chapters start with characters communicating in Latin, which then seamlessly transitions to English mid dialogue.²* TurnOfTheMillennium:²** Alex's chapter, and by proxy, ThePresentDay for the game in general, although the specific date isn't given.²** The climax takes place during the planetary alignment of 2000, which occurred on May 5 of that year.²* UniversalAmmunition: Averted. You have or find ammo for individual weapons. If you run out of ammo for your main weapon, you have to switch to your back-up.²* UpgradeArtifact: The Circles of Power, which is always found in Oublie Cathedral.²* UseItem: I can't use that jar now? Why not? You sometimes do have a description of what an item is to be used for or why it cannot be used for a specific task at least.²* UselessUsefulSpell: You can use the Restore and Self runes in combination with one of the three Elder God runes to restore your health, sanity, or mana -- but if you cast the mana variation, your mana will drain and then refill itself by the exact amount used to cast the spell. It's funny when you have more than one Elder God rune, but when you only have Ulyaoth's rune (i.e. in the third and most of the fourth chapters on Xel'lotath's route), less so.²* UnwittingPawn: Pious was meant to be a Chosen of Mantorok. When Chattur'gha, Ulyaoth, and Xel'lotath lure him away from Mantorok's service, they present him with the statue that would have been his in the Hall with the others who died in Mantorok's service. The three Ancients then trick Pious into destroying his own statue to become their slave. [[spoiler:This was all according to Mantorok's plan.]]²* VideoGameCaringPotential:²** You can save some Bonethief victims before they get controlled if you're quick. This is very prevalent in the World War I chapter with Peter.²** Ellia notices a guard under attack right after falling down a shaft and breaking her sword. If she saves the guard, he will repair her sword.²** Edward can gain access to the [[{{BFG}} Elephant Gun]] if he stops a Vampire Predator from draining the servant who has the key.²* VideoGameCrueltyPotential: Rats scurry around in some areas. If you have a firearm, you can shoot them with no ill effect. Kill a ''human,'' though, and [[VideoGameCrueltyPunishment you suffer a huge drop in sanity.]]²* VoodooZombie: The basic enemy is a corpse given life by the will of an EldritchAbomination, and granted some of its physical attributes. They can also MindRape by eye contact.²* WalkingWasteland: The Ancients' essences, particularly Mantorok's, are mentioned in the text as corroding the very air around them, needing a cloth to be handled. Also, Ehn'gha seems to have some sort of sphere of influence on the Roivas mansion, as the house staff frequently comments that the building never gets clean no matter how hard their attempts to work.²* WarIsHell: The chapters that take place near battlefields (i.e. "A War to End All Wars" and "Ashes to Ashes") play up the horrors of modern warfare for all they're worth, and Peter's and Michael's sanity is below average even before they encounter the Ancients.²* WhenThePlanetsAlign: Right there in the cover art. You're also given short [[FullMotionVideo FMV's]] between chapters of the planets' progress in making this happen.²* WhisperingGhosts: Even when the sanity meter is full they can be heard in some places at regular intervals and the characters in the game can apparently hear them too.²* AWizardDidIt: Anything "weird" that happens during the game (including the fact that the Tome appears to jump through time to make stories that happened in the future available to characters in the past) can easily be written off as "EldritchAbomination time / space magic made it possible." The True Ending suggests more specifically that [[spoiler:the proverbial "wizard" here is Mantorok.]]²* WhoForgotTheLights: The title lives up to its name and every area has a description for why it is so dark. Though the 2000 era Roivas mansion doesn't really hold up, considering it has electric lights.²* AWinnerIsYou: Subverted. At the end of a chapter, the game will abruptly throw a static "ToBeContinued" image at you and demand that you buy the nonexistent sequel if you want any sort of proper conclusion. Lucky for you, it's just a hallucination, a ShoutOut to the infamously [[CosmicDeadline abrupt]] ending of ''VideoGame/LegacyOfKain: Soul Reaver.''²* WithThisHerring: Averted for the most part; few of the characters are warriors or are expecting to be attacked, and the ones that do ''are'' armed. Some of them heavily.²* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: Pious is fond of it:²-->'''Pious:''' [[YouFool Fool!]] [[EvilIsHammy I spit at thee!]] [[TitleDrop The darkness shall be eternal!]]²* YouAllShareMyStory: "This is not ''my'' story... Or even the story of the Roivas family. It is the story of ''humanity.''"²* YourCheatingHeart: Chandra is punished ''dearly'' for not waiting patiently for Karim to return (from a quest ''she'' sent him on). However, compared to what might have happened to her or Karim if either of them had touched that artifact, and considering that Chandra's ghost just barely stopped Karim from touching it, it's not ''that'' bad.²* YourHeadASplode: Poor [[spoiler:Paul]] thought he was gonna get a nice big boss fight with Xel'lotath's [[spoiler:Black Guardian]]... Nope, just a head popping. Also happens occasionally if you try to cast a spell with low sanity, though it isn't permanent.²* ZeroEffortBoss: A [[BlackComedy morbidly hilarious]] inversion. One chapter begins with TheDragon summoning a giant guardian that looks like it'll be one hell of a boss fight. You open the door to its chamber with a message to the effect of: "Shall you put an end to this heresy?" There's a huge build-up with the dragon, with the characters declaring their intent to throw down -- then the guardian unceremoniously stomps you flat (or makes YourHeadASplode), and admonishes the dragon to not cramp its style. That's right: ''Your character'' is the anticlimax encounter. You get to fight them with a different character later along the timeline, however.²* ZombifyTheLiving: What happens to [[spoiler:Anthony;]] also, anyone killed by the mini boss of Edward's level instantly becomes a hostile zombie (although apart from the very first victim, you can drive it off and save Edward's servants if you're quick enough).²----²²'''''(FLASH)'''''²²[[SanitySlippage This isn't... really...]][[VideoGame/EternalDarkness happening!]]


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