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Tragic Keepsake / Video Games

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  • Ace Attorney:
    • Apollo Justice's bracelet used to belong to his mother. She probably left it with him when she abandoned him. Similarly, after Trucy's mother disappeared, her father gave her a locket with her mom's picture in it. Naturally, Trucy and Apollo actually have the same mother. Guess Thalassa isn't too great at sticking around her children. Both cases are a subversion since their mother is alive.
    • In Trials and Tribulations, the Master's Talisman that Misty Fey was obligated to wear around her neck for as long as she lived contained a picture of Maya and Mia, so they would always be with her until the day she died. Subverted in that Maya and Mia weren't dead; Misty had, in fact, abandoned them.
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    • Another example involving Apollo presents itself in Dual Destinies when Apollo starts wearing his best friend's GYAXA jacket as a Coat Cape after he's murdered.
  • In Chrono Trigger, Schala gives her little brother Janus an amulet to protect him. As Magus, he still keeps the amulet tied around his waist.
  • In Devil May Cry, the amulets and the swords Rebellion and Yamato given to Dante and Vergil respectively by their late father Sparda may count as this. Although the sons may not care too much about their demon heritage, they've shown quite a bit or respect for their father, although both for different reasons.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Dragon Age: Origins: In the City Elf origin, if the player character is female, she can loot her own wedding ring from the body of her murdered betrothed. Should the player choose, she can keep it throughout the rest of the game as this.
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    • Dragon Age II: When the templars forcibly took Anders to the Circle, the only personal possession he was allowed to keep was a pillow hand-embroidered by his mother. Before he goes on his quest to blow up the Chantry, he offers the pillow to Varric, saying that the latter has been his good friend.
    • Dragon Age: Inquisition: Cassandra Pentaghast has one, although it's only mentioned in party banter with Cole. She has a locket which had belonged to her grandmother, and it contains a portrait of her adored elder brother Anthony, who was killed many years earlier.
  • The Necromantress in DragonFable is always followed by a floating purple crystal. It's her older brother's Soul Jar.
  • In Dragon Quest IV, The Hero can pick up Elisa's feather cap after her Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Fallout: New Vegas has a few instances of this:
    • Boone has a sort of "If you get this, I'm dead" note addressed to his wife that all NCR troopers write; the tragedy is driven further when one remembers that his wife died long before him.
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    • Raul Tejada is implied to have one if you convince him to become a gunslinger again; he'll take up his guns in honor of his long-dead sister Rafaela, and sports a Vaquero outfit that is heavily implied to be the same one he'd parade around in to make her laugh; he becomes a folk hero who delivers justice to those who prey on the weak.
    • Cass has a tribal necklace from her mother before the latter died, and she is extremely stubborn to sell the name of her vaporized caravan company when you're trying to buy it from her.
    • One ending for Dog/God in the Dead Money DLC has God take control, and heal all his bodily wounds. Except for one: the large scars on his chest that spell out "DOG".
  • During the opening sequence of Fallout 4 the player character will automatically take the wedding ring of their deceased spouse if the player opens the cryo pod that their spouse was in. The player could hock it off to a vendor given its an open world game, but still its clearly meant to be this trope. This comic only drives the point home.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, Setzer kept one of an old friend/rival/love interest Darill, who died in an accident before the start of the game. When Kefka ruined the world and Setzer is roused from his Heroic BSoD by Celes, he takes the group to her burial place to retrieve it, so they can use it to save the world. The keepsake? The Falcon.
  • In Final Fantasy Tactics: Delita keeps his dead sister Tietra's necklace as shown in the Zeirchele Falls meeting with Ramza.
  • Fire Emblem Awakening is littered with these:
    • all the children from the future carry the engagement rings that their fathers gave to their mothers in their S supports, shall said mothers get married.
    • There are other more specific cases: Gerome and Cynthia ride Cherche's wyvern and Sumia's pegasus, respectively, and Laurent wears Miriel's Nice Hat. Cynthia also keeps the remains of a lance that she and Sumia were supposed to make together, while Owain holds on to a piece of staff that he calls "Lissa", which is implied to be part of the staff his mother Lissa was holding when she died (hence the name). According to the Golden Gaffe DLC, Severa keeps the money inside her wallet untouched because it's what remains of the last gold coins that her mother Cordelia gave her before dying.
    • Following the supports with Gerome and the Drama CD's, Princess Lucina has two from her mother, no matter who she can be: a pendant that she and Gerome search for when it's lost, and the golden tiara she's wearing (And one could say the Falchion is one from her father Chrom.)
  • Fire Emblem Fates has some more:
    • Severa/Selena's Golden Path supports with Cordelia's gender flipped expy Subaki state that she still carries Cordelia's engagement ring with her, as they meet when she's desperately looking for it. Subaki finds it and gives it back to her, and if they get married, he uses it as a base for the engagement ring he makes for her.
    • Azura's son Shigure has two of them. The first one is his hairstyle - the Peek-a-Bangs haircut was his best friend from the Deeprealms' one, and said friend was murdered right before Shigure's recruitment. The second comes from the Heirs of Fate DLC path, and it's the now dead Azura's old pendant.
    • Laslow wears a golden chain around his hip, attached to his leather belt. His daughter Soleil wears a white headband. Since Laslow is an Older and Wiser Inigo, this strongly implies that the chain and the headband belonged to his mother Olivia.
  • Late in the original Front Mission Lloyd (Or "Roid" of you're going to be like that) gets a hold of his fiance's brain, which has since been converted into a Wanzer CPU and equips it to his own unit. Unsurprisingly, it's the absolute best CPU available in the entire game.
  • In Granblue Fantasy, the doll Orchid carries around is one of Orchis' belongings which Apollonia gave to her in the hopes it would make her more emotional. Orchis suggests Orchid should keep it since the latter became much more attached to it then Orchis ever had.
  • Halo:
  • In Hometown Story, one of the villagers dies at some point. The Player Character and other villagers end up holding onto former possessions of deceased.
  • In Hotline Miami Jacket keeps a photo of himself and his old military friend Beard. Beard had given it to him as a memento after saving his life, only to perish in a nuclear strike some months later. At the end of the first game Jacket throws it away, believing his revenge against Russians (who had dropped the bomb) to be over.
  • Kingdom of Loathing parodies this with the "Dead Guy's Memento," which is obtained by attaching a Picture Of A Dead Guy's Girlfriend to a Dead Guy's Watch, using a Dead Guy's Piece of Double-Sided Tape. In this case, you don't have any emotional attachment to the dead guy or his girlfriend, but equipping it still gives you some nice bonuses because this trope is so prevalent.
  • The King of Fighters:
    • Terry Bogard and his trademark cap. As explained in the the intro of Fatal Fury: Wild Ambition and the FF anime specials, it was a gift given by his adoptive father Jeff after he was killed by Geese. He later gives his cap to Geese's son Rock and the kid keeps it with him ever since.
    • Blue Mary has her own keepsake with her leather jacket, which was given by her deceased lover Butch as a gift to her.
    • Clark Still has his dog tags, one of these belonged to a dead friend of his.
    • Elisabeth Blanctorche has a headband that once belonged to her best friend Ash Crimson, and she keeps keeps it with her in her team's XIII ending after his Taking You with Me with Saiki in which he erases himself from his own existence in the process. Evne more, Elisabeth is the only one who remembers him.
  • In The Last of Us, Joel keeps the watch given to him as a birthday gift by the daughter he had failed to save in remembrance of her - though cracked and past its usefulness, he still keeps it with him over 20 years later.
  • Dart from The Legend of Dragoon keeps a gem his father once had before he and his mother were killed by the Black Monster. This is later revealed to be the Dragoon Spirit of the Red-Eyed Dragon, which allows him to go into Dragoon form.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Prince Ralis received the Coral Earring from his mother Queen Rutela before she was killed by Zant. He eventually gives it to Link upon realizing that the latter needs it to catch a Reekfish to track a Yeti.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, the Sheikah Slate acts as one for Link; it originally belonged to Zelda back when they traveled together and before it was sealed up in the Shrine of Resurrection with Link, and her photographs on the camera are the key to Link recovering from his amnesia. She gets it back in the ending once Ganon is defeated and she is freed from his grasp.
  • Megaman X series:
    • In the first Mega Man X1 game, failing to acquire the Mega Buster upgrade will lead to Zero giving his to X before expiring.
    • In one of the endings of Mega Man X5, in which Zero is destroyed, X will continue to wield his friend's Z-Saber in his fight for peace. He uses it throughout Mega Man X6, but discards it by the time of X7.
  • Metal Gear:
    • Naked Snake/Big Boss wears The Boss' bandana, which he snatched from her head upon her defection, for ten years. After watching the Peace Walker AI weapon drown itself in the ocean, he manages to find some closure to the event at last and casts it off to the winds.
    • Late in Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain: After a large number of Diamond Dogs are killed following a vocal chord parasite outbreak, Big Boss orders their ashes be pressed into diamonds to hand out to the survivors. That way, even in death, their comrades would be by their side.
  • In Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, Talion’s cape was an anniversary gift made by his wife Ioreth, and his ‘dagger’ is his son Dirhael’s broken sword Acharn, after the three were sacrificed by the Black Hand of Sauron in the game’s opening.
  • A few crop up in the first chapter of Mother 3, in the form of Claus's shoes and the piece of cloth from Hinawa's dress, as well as "the" Drago Fang, described as "the relic of a horrible accident." Later on, you get a razor and lipstick from each of the Magypsies when they pass on, which will revive the character holding them if they fall in battle.
  • In Night Trap, Tony has a locket with a picture of his former girlfriend (who looks just like Ashley, one of the girls at the sleepover) in it. We never find out what happened to her.
  • Persona 3 has a couple of these. Mamoru, the Star Social Link, carries his father's car keys (from the car he died driving); when you max out the link, he decides to take responsibility for his family by working in a factory; as a sign he's moved past his father's death, he leaves the car keys with you. Akinari, the Sun social link, has what could be called a subverted one: the notebook he wrote his story in before he died from his disease; in the epilogue, you offer it to his mother, but she asks you to keep it so that she can hear the story from Akinari himself in the afterlife.
    • FES has Elizabeth lampshade this an interesting way during one of her quests. She asks for a fruit knife (which you get from Shinjiro, as he loves cooking). However, like her other fetch quests she won't take it as she notices how well taken care of it is, saying it's probably very important to the owner (the engraving on it hints that has to do with orphanage he grew up in.) In the end though, after the events of October 4, you will still have it in your inventory, making it more or less your keepsake of Shinjiro.
    • The girl's route in the remake also shows a few. Ken, who is a social link, keeps the key to his house (which was destroyed and left him without a home and a family). When he overcomes the regrets of losing his mom and realizes he suppressed all of the loving memories with her for the sake of revenge, he gives the protagonist that key, representing how he moved on, along with she is just as important him as those memories. Koromaru also has the collar that he used to wear on his walks with his late master, and Shinjiro also has pocket watch which he cherishes, and as he's an orphan also, it's likely it was from a family member. There's also Ryoji, who gives you a ring as proof that he was once human, before going on to cause the Fall.
  • Cubone from Pokémon are notable for wearing their dead mother's skull on their heads. They wail for said mothers often. Which is odd given, among other reasons, if you breed your female Cubone or Marowak, she'll be fine, and her offspring will still have the skull.
    • This is yet more support for the "written by the ten-year-old protagonists" alternate fan theory on Pokedex entries. If nothing else, think about the mathematics: If the skull is specifically that of the Cubone's mother, then the species has been going extinct at a rapid pace for quite some time, and in fact should have disappeared decades if not centuries ago, because there are only so many skulls to go around, and some of those Marowak are male.
    • There is an Epileptic Trees theory stating that Cubone are actually the pouch babies leftover from dead Kangaskhan.
  • Professor Layton has a hat which he values highly. Unwound Future reveals that it's actually this trope, as it was the last gift he ever received from his One True Love, Claire, before her untimely death.
  • Pump It Up has an example in the BGA for Canon-D, in which a girl keeps a necklace that was actually a pupil from a robotic eye that helped her escape from treacherous robots but ends up getting killed protecting her.
  • In Red Dead Redemption II: Arthur's main hat belonged to his dad. In turn, he gives it to John along with the rest of his stuff right before he dies. John also proposes to Abigail with an engagement ring that once belonged to him.
  • Silent Hill: Shattered Memories has these in the form of collectible "mementos".
  • Street Fighter II's Guile keeps his friend Charlie's dog tags with him throughout his quest to bring Bison down.
    • Dhalsim from the same game wears a collar made of skulls. These belong to a group of children who died of famine in his village, and he wears them to honor their memory.
  • Sonic Adventure 2 does this at the end when Sonic gives Rouge Shadow's inhibitor ring after the black-and-red hedgehog supposedly dies.
    • And again in Sonic Unleashed, Sonic keeps Chip's collar when the latter returns to his millennial sleep.
  • In Tales of Xillia 2, Ludger takes the swords that were used by his brother Julius in the wake of his demise. You can also optionally obtain more keepsakes through a sidequest, which are a pair of the glasses he was always wearing and a better version of the aforementioned swords.
  • In another dark example, Mr. Grimm of Twisted Metal: Black is reimagined as an insane former Vietnam veteran (as opposed to being death incarnate). He and a buddy were captured by the VC during the war, and a sadistic Russian advisor kept the two of them starving in a pit. After the buddy dies, Grimm was forced to eat him to survive. Grimm kept the man's skull, and wears it as a mask.
  • Ashley Riot begins Vagrant Story wearing his murdered wife's Rood Necklace as his first equipable accessory.
  • In Wick, each if the Weavers (a family who died under mysterious circumstances) has two or three collectible items associated with them. Finding one is akin to finding some Story Breadcrumbs.
    • In the No Way Out free DLC, moving the items upset the ghosts associated with them.
  • Several items in World of Warcraft act as this, such as at the end of Rheastrasza's quest chain rewarding you with her last egg after she and her other egg are destroyed by Deathwing and the Paragons of the Klaxxi encounter in the Siege of Orgrimmar giving you a chance to get Kaz'tik the Manipulator's pet kunchong Kovok.

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