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Playing With / Mutually Exclusive Party Members

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Basic Trope: Recruiting one character into the Player Party bars you from recruiting another.

  • Straight: If the player chooses to recruit Morgana, they can't get Eric to join their Player Party as well. The same rules apply vice-versa; they can only have one or the other, or neither, but not both.
  • Exaggerated:
    • Every single recruitable character in the game has a corresponding character who gets locked out of the Player Party upon the other's recruitment.
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    • Out of over a dozen companions, you can only ever recruit one per playthrough—the others will forever refuse to join you, even if your original companion perished in the meantime.
    • Recruiting Eric requires you to kill Morgana.
  • Downplayed:
    • You can't have Morgana or Eric at the same time in your party, but you can dismiss one to add the other any time you like.
    • Morgana and Eric are only mutually exclusive for part of the game; perhaps you later get a chance to recruit both, or they only become mutually exclusive after a certain point where you must choose between them.
    • You technically can have Eric and Morgana in the same party, however the incompatibility of their sources constantly triggers a Yin-Yang Bomb effect seriously harming your party. The only real reasons to do so is as a Self-Imposed Challenge.
  • Justified:
    • Morgana and Eric are rivals who simply can't stand each other. The thought of having to work together, even for a good cause, makes both of them sick.
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    • Morgana and Eric are two split personalities of a single individual.
    • To free Eric from his prison, Morgana has to sacrifice herself, or vice versa.
    • Eric and Morgana are wandering mercenaries. Hiro only has enough money to hire one of them, and by the time he earns enough money for the other, they're long gone.
  • Inverted: Recruiting Morgana makes Eric automatically argue his way into your party as well.
  • Subverted: Though Eric kicks up a fuss when Hiro asks Morgana to join his team, he accepts his invitation to come along as well.
  • Double Subverted: ...However, he only joins with the intent of betraying Hiro later on to The Empire; something that doesn't happen if you don't recruit Morgana, because he pulls a Heel–Face Turn in that case.
  • Parodied: Eric and Morgana are effectively Joke Characters because all of their abilities only escalate to being useful if the other used their attack first. And there isn't any Power Copying to get around it either.
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  • Zig Zagged: If Morgana is recruited first, Eric initially invites himself along, but with the intention of stabbing Hiro in the back. He can eventually be talked back onto your side, but while attempting this while Morgana is in your active party offers more dialogue options, it also drastically lowers your chances of success (despite Morgana seemingly really wanting to save her Rival Turned Evil). If Eric is recruited first, Morgana leaves in a huff, but can be recruited later... if Hiro completes a well-hidden Side Quest.
  • Averted: Whether or not Hiro recruits both Morgana and Eric is solely up to the player.
  • Enforced:
  • Lampshaded: (Sees the other half.) "I'm probably going to have to choose aren't I?"
  • Implied: In a canceled or fictional game Morgana and Eric are never in the same screenshot or cutscene and there are versions with one or the other but not both.
  • Invoked: Evulz has an agent sabotage the relationship so that Eric and Morgana can't stand each other.
  • Exploited: Evulz sets up an elementally bifurcated dungeon to make it harder since you can't have both of them along.
  • Defied: "Either you both go or neither of you will."
  • Discussed:
    Hiro: Are you sure I can't convince you two to put aside your differences and work together?
    Eric: Don't even bother trying to spare her feelings, dude. She's much nastier than she looks.
    Morgana: He's just trying to let you down easy, y'know! *Puppy-Dog Eyes* Right, Hiro-niichan?
    Hiro: ...Maybe I don't need a new spellcaster after all...
    Morgana/Eric: *Death Glare*
  • Conversed: ???
  • Deconstructed: After the player makes their decision between the two, both mages are fleshed out over time and shown to be Not So Different. It's made painfully clear that if not for their prideful headbutting and refusal to accept each other as anything more than rivals, they could have become good friends and True Companions. But due to their Fatal Flaws (and game mechanics), they're incapable of seeing past the other's mask and connecting with each other.
  • Reconstructed: An alternate universe is shown where the two attempted to work together. While they are it turns out being together is fundamentally incompatible. Even if they swallow their pride their power sources clash together and they are weaker than if they were separate. This revelation causes the non-taken one to engage in heroism without the rest of the party.
  • Played For Laughs: Once they realize Hiro's looking to add a spellcaster to his ranks, Morgana and Eric start openly competing for his attention, with flashy pyro/frost-technics and dragging him into a dungeon where they're both Guest Star Party Members.
  • Played For Drama: During Hiro's visit, Morgana and Eric's Beloved Peasant Village is attacked, and they both run off to defend different parts of it. Whichever one Hiro doesn't help winds up being Killed Off for Real, leaving the other to cry "How Dare You Die on Me!"

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