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Trials of the God-Harem King is a High School DxD quest thread powered by Exalted game mechanics, authored by Alexander, and hosted on Questionable Questing. Also called I will become God-Harem King of the World after the thread title, it is a Choose Your Own Adventure story controlled by the readers, who vote on which actions to take after each story post. It was one of the most popular quests on QQ, but is now on hiatus.

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The story begins at the moment Issei is murdered by Raynare at the beginning of the plot. As Issei feels his consciousness ebbing away, his plight catches the eye of a power foreign to his world. The Unconquered Sun of Creation is moved by the compassion and courage in Issei's heart and imbues him with his power, resurrecting him as one of the Twilight Caste of the Solar Exalted. Wielding the power of the sun in his right hand and the Red Dragon Emperor in his left, Issei emerges into the supernatural world as an independent power rather than a servant of devils.

Discussion, character stats, and story posts can all be found here. Visitors should consider themselves warned that Questionable Questing hosts some highly NSFW content elsewhere on the site, though Trials itself is perfectly safe-for-work. Additional NSFW scenes from this quest can also be found elsewhere on QQ.

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This story contains examples of:

  • A God Am I: Averted and subverted. Ddraig and Bright both encourage Issei to think this way, as his Exaltation grants him the authority the Unconquered Sun bestowed on his chosen. Issei disagrees, and then Bright reveals that she agrees with him, and that she had other motives for making the suggestion.
  • A Lady on Each Arm: Issei, to the considerable jealousy of every straight male in sight of him.
  • All There in the Manual: As Issei's power runs on Exalted mechanics, some degree of knowledge about how Exalted works is necessary to better understand his actions.
  • Amnesiac Dissonance: After her second encounter with Issei, Raynare has lost all her memories, her personality completely flips, she starts idolizing Akeno as a big sister because they share similar hair, and she's afraid of dragons. As Issei puts it, he punched the Evilness out of her.
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  • Ascended Extra: Mittelt. In canon she was one of Raynare's minions, had barely any screen time, and got killed off-screen by Rias with no fanfare. In this story her character is expanded on significantly and she ultimately becomes the first girl to properly join Issei's harem as well as the one who took his virginity.
  • Awesome Mc Coolname: Issei is given the title "Sovereign of the Radiant Scales."
  • Betty and Veronica: Asia and Mittelt respectively to Issei.
  • Belated Backstory: Issei's excuse for his sudden upgrade to Bishonen is one for his classmates.
  • Beyond the Impossible: After a sparring match between the combined forces of Rias's Peerage and Issei's Half-Caste and Riser's Peerage, the entire training camp was on fire. Said training camp was specifically warded to be fireproof because of all the fire-users in the Phenex family that are expected to use it.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Issei plays this role for Kiyome Abe, an upperclassman of his assaulted by thugs, and also for a barkeeper being terrorized by a gang of hoodlums.
  • Bishōnen: Issei, hilariously. Appearance 5 has its perks.
  • Blue and Orange Morality: Bright Shattered Ice, the remnants of the previous bearer of Issei's exaltation and one of his two mentors.
  • Board Games: Issei works by the rules of one, due to his Exaltation. Though the author makes Acceptable Breaks from Reality every now and then; just for starters, the circumstances of Issei's Second Breath really should have attracted an entirely different sort of Exaltation, but then the quest wouldn't be nearly as much fun as it is.
  • Break the Haughty: Raynare.
  • Brick Joke: When Issei told Kiba about the Daiklaves, Kiba finds the idea absurd, and made a bet of eating a hat - with ketchup - if Issei finds a Daiklave and a way to use it effectively; a lot of chapters later Issei does finds a Daiklave, uses it to kick ass, and Kiba starts chewing on a hat and asking for ketchup.
  • Challenge Seeker: Yang. Also Issei to a lesser extent.
    • Shougo(better known as Berserker) as well.
  • Character Development: Issei takes a dot of Temperance and a whole lot of tact during the first arc. He's still as perverted as ever but he doesn't go around shouting about how badly he wants a harem anymore. Losing his virginity probably helped a lot too.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Issei, he proudly admits he is a pervert, but he really respect women, and he loves all the members in his harem.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Raynare is at the receiving end of this at Issei's hand twice after his Exaltation.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Subverted by most of the Fallen Angels, who still have a grudge against Issei, despite being allies. Played straight by Shougo Kitsukawa, who joins up with Issei after being beaten.
  • Door Stopper: Over two years note , 350 odd forum pages, and three separate threads there have been 162 canon story posts, half a dozen or so canon NSFW omakes, and 19 other omake posts of varying canon-hood.
  • The Dulcinea Effect: Issei's virtue flaw manifests as this. If he doesn't rescue a damsel in distress he aggravates the Great Curse and starts going insane. Not that he knows this, of course.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Kenichi appeared training at the end of one arc, before he was properly introduced.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Since the Canon material was already one, the crossovers add even more mythological beings.
  • Fantastic Nature Reserve: Gensokyo.
  • For Great Justice: Ruby's motivation as a Sacred Gear user.
  • For Want of a Nail: Issei took his Second Breath rather than summoning Rias for a wish, and so never became a devil. This has caused dramatic changes in the entire plot.
    • Issei's performance in the first arc and the ensuing training arc are particular stand-outs. Because of the wording of the contract between him and the Gremory family, Rias takes most of the political credit for his accomplishments in the Underworld. This has led to her marriage with Raiser being postponed by years, and Raiser showing up in person to discuss the matter with Issei.
  • Freudian Trio: Issei, Ddraig and Bright. Ddraig is the Id, Bright is the Superego, and Issei as the Ego.
  • Geeky Turn-On: Solar!Issei and Rias click like a key in a lock when they discover they both love Archer.
  • Groin Attack: Poor Freed.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Mittelt, disgusted that Raynare would murder her own allies, decides she would rather change teams right as Issei kicks the door down to save Asia.
  • Heroic Host: Issei is hosting two entities in his body who are tied to the source of his powers.
  • Horse of a Different Color: Ruby and Yang's second Magus, the horses of Death and War (see below). Death's horse turns into a wolf, while Yang's becomes her trademark motorcycle from her own series.
  • Horsemen of the Apocalypse: In this setting, they were a group of half-human half-angels that fought in the last Great War. Each of them wielded four Sacred Gears which are collectively known as the Magnus. Their successors are the RWBY girls, although only Ruby and Yang have appeared so far. Ruby's Crescent Rose is Death's Scythe, while Yang's Ember Celica is War's Gauntlets. Later on, Azazel gives them the actual horses (which are themselves part of the Magus).
  • In Spite of a Nail: Issei still gets in touch with the Gremory peerage using the rune he received from Rias's familiar, though not for purposes of reincarnation.
  • Jumped at the Call: Ruby found a superhero doing martial arts katas on the roof of her friend's apartment complex and immediately went chasing after him when he ran off.
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: Raynare is at the receiving end of this trope.
  • Love Hotels: Issei and Yang visit one to have sex.
  • Making Love in All the Wrong Places: Issei has sex with Aika in the sports equipment room of Kuoh Academy, some time later Issei has sex with Asia in the bathroom of his house.
  • Massive Multiplayer Crossover: The author fleshes out the DxD setting by importing characters from other settings and tweaking their powers and backstories to make them fit in. The settings include:
    • High School DxD: Obviously.
    • Exalted: Also obviously. It's setting is considered to be an Alternate Universe from Dx D's setting. As of now, the only thing that's popped up is Issei's Exaltation and the past life inside of it, though it's been hinted that may change.
    • RWBY: Ruby and Yang appear as Sacred Gear wielders. It's hinted that Weiss and Blake will show up eventually.
    • Campione!: The History Compilation Committee exists to help protect Japan against the supernatural and Issei's contact in the organization is Kaoru Sayanomiya. The rest of the series's setting does not appear to exist.
    • Touhou: Mittelt's grandmother is Suika Ibuki, of all people. Gensokyo itself exists, and is one of Issei's quest goals - to find living dragons to teach him dragon powers.
    • Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple: A story arc involves Issei meeting with the five masters, who are vaguely aware of the supernatural world (as Supernatural Martial Arts are a thing here). Various characters from the series appear as recurring cast members. Also, Kenichi's little sister gets a Longinus Sacred Gear.
    • Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan: Another story arc has Issei meet with the Nura Clan.
    • Senran Kagura: Issei meets Mirai when fighting a Stray Devil, and later hires the Crimson Squad. It's explained that the ninja use a modified form of Senjutsu.
    • And then there are The Cameos:
  • The Masquerade: There are groups that keep the super natural elements hidden from the normal people, one of these groups is The History Compilation Committee.
  • Mugging the Monster: Raiser's response to having Rias's wedding postponed is to make a beeline for the human world and find this "Red Dragon Emperor" and beat him to a pulp to show the Underworld how weak he is. Yeah, about that...
    • Even worse, he repeats his threat from canon that he would murder Rias's entire peerage if that was what it took to get her to marry him. Issei takes this about as well as might be expected.
  • Naïve Newcomer: Ruby, when she is first introduced. To a lesser extent, Issei to the supernatural world just after his Exaltation.
  • Omniglot: Issei originally spoke only Japanese, but thanks to his Exaltation now he can also speak all the Indo-European Languages Family.
  • Resurrected for a Job: Played with. The Unconquered Sun does resurrect Issei to be his champion, but he doesn't set any specific goals.
  • Running Gag: After one too many shocking revelations about his still-developing power set, Issei is under orders from Rias to wait until she is sitting down and has a cup of tea ready before springing another one on her.
  • Shout-Out: Quite a few, most of them done in-character.
    • An encounter with a pack of thugs shortly after his Exaltation ends with Issei scaring them off while borrowing Shizuo Heiwajima's "You can't complain, right?!" Pre-Asskicking One-Liner.
    • Upon encountering Kiba's Sword Birth sacred gear Issei immediately makes a quip about Unlimited Blade Works. Kiba is confused, but Rias immediately outs herself as an Archer fangirl - or more appropriately, a full-blown otaku.
    • Issei mentions that even Arthas Menethil would tremble when Grayfia gets angry.
    • When Issei is having a discussion with Ddraig, about Issei being useless before his exaltation, he say the famous line "the cake is a lie" from "Portal"
    • Azazel's training course starts by chasing Issei down a tunnel with a suspiciously-familiar giant rolling boulder.
    • When Issei is introduced to Gaspar, just learning that he is a vampire with time-stopping powers sends his geekiness to overdrive - and drags Rias along for the ride.
      Issei: Being small and cute! Dressing like a girl! No way! No way! No way! Listen well Gasper Vladi-kohai! My name is Issei Hyodo, second year! My job is to do the impossible! Carve those words into your heart! Nice to meet you! You only need to understand this! That I will train you - until you look exactly like this!
      Gaspar: No waaaayyyy! There is absolutely no way for me to even remotely look like that incredibly handsome gentleman!
      Rias: I approve!
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Leans pretty far down the idealistic side, but Issei is still a Solar with the Great Curse, so it remains to be seen whether this will remain the case. The quest author has explicitly stated that he started another Exalted/Anime crossover quest and is running it on the Cynicism side of the Scale, just so he wouldn't be tempted to throw the really cynical plot twists into this one.
  • Spanner in the Works: Issei walks right into the fallen angel base, encounters Raynare, and puts her down for the count at roughly the halfway mark of the first book simply because he wasn't a devil and wasn't chased off by the ominous feeling around the old church.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: All of the fallen angels in Raynare's posse. Raynare herself may not technically count, as she has total Identity Amnesia following her second Curb-Stomp Battle — the person she was is dead for all intents and purposes. Issei prefers to think of it as "punching the evil out of her."
  • Super Empowering: Issei develops the ability to turn others into Solar Half-Caste, including non-humans. Note that this is something you can't normally do in Exalted; Issei has reached a level beyond Glorious Solar Bullshit. And as if that wasn't enough, Issei is on the verge of adapting the Evil Piece system to create discount Solar Exalted.
  • Super Power Lottery: Issei. Twice over no less, first with Boosted Gear and second with his Exaltation.
    • Ruby and Yang got a pretty sweet deal too. Crescent Rose and Ember Celica aren't just sacred gears, they're a pair of legendary gears known as the Magnus, known for being the former weapons of Death and War and notable for being part of a set of several gears that each of the horseman wielded together. Theoretically Ruby and Yang can re-inherit and use all of the gears that their predecessors used.
      • Recent events include Azazel giving the two each another part of their sets. The mounts, specifically.
  • This Is Unforgivable!: Issei's reaction when he learns what Raynare was going to do to Asia.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Issei, unsurprisingly, but also Raiser compared to his canon depiction, all curb-stomp battles aside.
    • Honoka, Kenichi little sister, is the possessor of Innovate Clear, also known as the Miniature Garden of the Green Tree of Innovation, one of the Longinus.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Not that Issei wasn't a perfectly nice person to begin with, but his “get a harem” motivation had the edge taken off of it by certain events in the first arc, which lead him to rephrase it to Yang as something more akin to “make girls happy.”
    • Relative to her canon self, this is how Mittelt's character was expanded on prior to her Heel–Face Turn. Evidently she didn't know what Raynare had planned for Asia save that it involved her sacred gear somehow. When she learns that it involves killing Asia she changes sides more or less immediately.
  • Touched by Vorlons: Issei, as part of the changes Boosted Gear has gone through, has the ability to temporarily grant others a portion of his Solar-ness. See also Super Empowering.
  • Training from Hell: Issei's absurd Resistance stat means he can go without sleeping for days at a time, so he indulges in this as often as he can. Azazel is more than happy to help.
    • The fallen angel trio get taken to Norway by Beowolf to wrestle were-bears with their bare hands.
  • Unexpected Character: Characters from Senran Kagura.
  • Uneven Hybrid: Mittelt is 1/4 Oni, and 3/4 Fallen Angel.
  • World of Badass: By Word of God, everyone and everything kicks ass and has at least a "badass" trope.
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