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Video Game / AFK Arena

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This only represents one faction.note 
AFK Arena is a Free-To-Play RPG for the Android and iOS by Lilith Games.

Dura, Goddess of Life, was attacked by Hypogeans sent by Annih, the God of Death, who created them out of jealousy. In one last act, Dura creates seven artifacts and scatters them across Esperia.

Many millenia later, the Hypogeans rise again with the intent on laying waste to Esperia once again.

May the tropes protect us:

  • Always Chaotic Evil: The Hypogeans, due to being an evil demonic race created to wreak havoc across Esperia. Including the ones you can recruit.
  • Ambidextrous Sprite: The characters' sprites get flipped depending on which way they're facing, which can get pretty glaring when things like Lucius's shield and Thane's missing arm keep flipping sides in battle.
  • And Man Grew Proud: Few remember much about this era, but the previous civilization mastered the secrets of magic Dura had once gifted them with and started getting closer and closer to the gods. As mortals gained more power, they also increased in hubris, and even declared war upon the Celestials. Details are fuzzy, but the old civilization was ultimately destroyed. Their Immortality Seekers annoyed Annih, who proceeded to trick them into obsessive experiments with Artificial Hybrids. There are also hints they were attacked by an Old God that they stood no chance against, even with magic rivaling the celestials.
  • Artificial Hybrid: The first incarnation of the Lightbearer Empire conducted human experiments, infusing test subjects with Life Energy from animals and turning them into a blend of man and beast. This was not what the Empire's mages were hoping for at all. They had been tricked by Annih into thinking that with enough human alchemy experiments, they would become immortal. The descendants of the human test subjects would become a tribe known as the Ya, who would themselves descend into the Maulers and some of the Wilders. A Well-Intentioned Extremist devised a way to reverse the process, hoping this would bring peace by returning humans and Maulers to one race, but since modern Maulers have been Beast Men all their lives and have an intense racial grudge against humans, two of his test subjects decided that even becoming a demon would be better than that.
  • Asset Actor: The periodic "Voyage of Wonders" adventures sometimes have NPCs to speak to to continue, but for their dialogue portrait, a playable character is used. For instance, Vurk, a mere hunter, stands in for the chief of the Durri species in "The Road Home", and Nakoruru, who isn't even from the same universe, is used as a Lightbearer villager in "The Depths of Time III". Whenever this occurs, though the stand-in character's portrait is shown, the name in the dialog box is replaced.
    • Oddly enough, the closest thing to an exception is the portrait for Lucrezia's human form, despite the fact that it isn't used for her actual character.
    • In Merchant's Adventures, Rowan goes to a far off land to trade. In this specific instance, the Asset Actors are actually referred to by the asset actor's asset name, despite the fact that Rowan is the only major character with whom it would make sense for him to be present.
    • Rowan the merchant's portrait is the portrait most often used for other merchants. This includes Gunning for Gold, where Rowan using a different skin is the protagonist, resulting in him talking to a different version of "himself".
  • Big Bad Ensemble:
  • Boss Battle: Guild Hunt and the Twisted Realm pit you against various boss enemies that can't be defeated, but the damage you deal is tracked and used to evaluate payouts from fighting them. Wrizz (one of the Guild Hunt bosses) also appears in the Arcane Labyrinth, where he can be killed and will only give rewards if you defeat him... but you only get one attempt and he actually deals damage.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Downplayed. Spending money speeds up the rate at which you acquire resources and therefore allows you to progress faster, but the game never goes out of its way to rob you of functionality if you decide not to spend money on it; even Diamonds, the closest thing to a premium currency, can be accumulated at a fairly respectable rate. A free-to-play account can progress throughout the entire game with no issues if you invest in the right heroes, it'll just take a while.
  • Color-Coded Item Tiers: In ascending order, tiers used in the game are: green (Common), blue (rare), purple (Epic), orange (Legendary), red (Mythic), and amethyst (Ascended). These apply to every aspect of the game that uses tiers in some way, most notably heroes, which use all of these. Equipment also uses gray, a tier below green.
  • Com Mons: all common heroes have over a fifty percent rate of being summoned and cannot be ascended to higher rarities. Their use comes out of retiring them which grants a player with hero coins and essence, which can be used to level up your heroes and grab better ones from the shop. Rare heroes become this late game due to only being promotable to Legendary+ and being level-capped at 160, making them only good for feeding to your Elite heroes later on.
  • Cosmic Flaw: The Hypogeans biggest focus appears to be on messing with the laws of reality and breaching the gaps between dimensions.
  • Crutch Character: Rare heroes can be strong in their own right in the early game and are easier to ascend than Elite heroes, making some of them perfectly usable until they reach their level cap and have to be retired. Saveas is probably the most notable example; packing a serious wallop and having deceptively high durability, he can single-handedly carry your team all the way up to the point where he becomes obsolete.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: The War of Truth event allowed players to contribute to the Celestial and Hypogean factions in a battle. Inevitably, the overwhelming majority of players voted for a Hypogean victory.
  • Cute Monster Girl: The Maulers have a fairly jarring example of this. While the male Maulers are generally all Beast Men, the females tend to look like human girls with animal features (although Safiya does have a feline lower half, being a sphinx and all). This also generally applies to female Wilders, but it stands out less due to there being good-looking male Wilders as well.
  • The Dark Arts:
    • Necromancy, a branch of magic made possible by Annih forsaking his duties. By using the power of obsessions and grudges, it allows for enslaving the dead. Worst of all, the undead Curse is unbreakable even to Annih's children, the Hypogeans. Only the Power of the Void can destroy a Graveborn, and doing so will grant not the rest of an afterlife, but Cessation of Existence.
    • The Power of the Void is slowly devouring the entire universe, but there are mages that delve into its secrets.
    • Some mages specialize in using the power of Hypogean demons themselves. While there are rare antiheroes that use such magics to enslave them, they are mostly traitors to humanity that have signed a Deal with the Devil.
    • Human alchemy was originally banned by the previous civilization, because it was not only unethical, but they predicted that it could have catastrophic consequences. But And Man Grew Proud, and younger generations knew better than their foolish predecessors and their backwards "moralizing". As the ruler of the previous civilization prepared to overthrow the gods, he recognized the potential of this technology, fired the old-fashioned mages, and replaced them with ones that knew better. The ultimate result annihilated their civilization and threw the world into ruin.
  • Dream Land: A realm older than the so-called "real world" where the soul visits while sleeping. It is among other things a Portal Crossroad World, theoretically providing access to other worlds. With Tasi, Dreamland's protector, no longer able to stand up to Ezizh, he is slowly but surely taking over to drive all mortals to madness. With Eldritch Abominations taking advantage as reality breaks down, the late stages of campaign mode focus on the war there.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Well, factional Rock-Paper-Scissors, but the functions are the same. Each faction has an advantage over another faction that allows them to deal an additional 25% damage. Lightbearers are strong against Maulers, Maulers are strong against Wilders, Wilders, are strong against Graveborn, Graveborn are strong against Lightbearers, and Celestials and Hypogeans are mutually strong against one-another. Dimensionals are the only faction to not have such a thing apply to them.
  • Fantastic Racism: Maulers and some Wilders are descended from an Artificial Hybrid race called the Ya. The Wilders have set aside their grudges against baseline humanity, but the Maulers, who continuously war with them for resources, have not.
  • Guest Fighter: Ukyo Tachibana, Nakoruru, and Ezio all appear as dimensional heroes for purchase, but they could also be acquired for free with use of Guild coins, Hero coins, Labyrinth tokens, and Gladiator Coins. Later, Ainz Ooal Gown and Albedo also joined the roster, followed by Joker and Queen.
  • Guide Dang It!: Certain adventures require you to take somewhat unintuitive actions to get everything.
    • To get the final chest in "The Frozen Hinterland", you need to warp into an otherwise inaccessible section of the map by using one of the portals seven times, then searching the alcoves to make it spawn. You get a cryptic clue about this from the map, but you're probably not figuring this one out without a guide or just luck and experimentation, especially since the clue only partially reveals the method.
    • "The Sealing Sword" eventually reaches a point where, to progress, you have to fight an undefeatable enemy and lose, at which point your heroes are revived and you get sent back to the start of the map. No other adventure requires you to do this, and players will often be very hesitant to do this since letting your heroes get killed in an adventure everywhere else leaves them unusable for the rest of the run. So, again, good luck figuring this out without a walkthrough.
  • Immortality Seeker: As the first incarnation of the Lightbearer Empire reached it's heights, their mages started focusing their research on eternal life. The ultimate results of their research were the Eternal Engravings, a series of runes infused with elemental crystals that reinforced one's body. Incidentally, this was the last straw for the patience of the God of the Dead, Annih. Feeling that the mortals needed to be taught a lesson, he lured the immortality seekers into a trap by teaching them human alchemy, promising them that the right combination of Life Energy would give them what they seeked. This resulted in the creation of the Maulers and eventually destroyed their civilization. Upon realizing they had been deceived, the surviving humans were enraged and turned on Annih, and the embittered Annih became an Omnicidal Maniac. In the modern era, the Eternal Engravings have been rediscovered. And even those who are not mortal have developed an interest in them due to the resulting increase in power that they bring.
  • An Interior Designer Is You: The Oak Inn allows you to invite your Ascended-tier heroes to live in and decorate them with various kinds of furniture. It's not just for show, though, since furniture items also give stat boosts and can unlock new abilities and bonuses.
  • Irony: The previous civilization once attempted to overthrow the gods and created a pair of artificial deities to use as superweapons against them. The old civilization was defeated before they could deploy them and the two artificial deities, "Day" and "Night", were sealed into slumber. A Celestial eventually managed to recover them, but his conscience overtook his ambition, so he worked with a similarly rebellious Hypogean to care for them as an actual family and protect them against those who would seek to use them. The Celestial and Hypogeans as a collective worked together to tear the adopted family apart so that they could use them as Human Weapons themselves. After breaking their brainwashing and realizing that they have been used, Day and Night are motivated to fulfill their original purpose and embark on a Rage Against the Heavens against both Celestials and Hypogeans.
  • Limit Break: Heroes' ultimate abilities are used by charging up energy from dealing/taking damage or slaying enemies.
  • Marathon Level: By this game's standards, anyway. Later chapters have levels that make you fight multiple enemy teams in a row. Since you can't use the same hero twice in a single level, the challenge lies in having enough good heroes and spreading them out enough to defeat all of them in one go.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules:
    • Enemies in campaign stages are not subject to the usual ascension or level caps for Rare heroes, allowing them to get Ascended versions of heroes like Angelo and Saveas.
    • Players are limited to one copy of each hero per team; the AI is not. This is particularly apparent in the King's Tower, adventures, and the Abyssal Expedition, where it's not unheard of for teams consisting of three or more copies of a hero to appear (and, in the latter, it's not uncommon to face teams with five of a single hero).
  • Permadeath: Adventures and the Arcane Labyrinth operate on this principle: health and energy carries over between fights, and if a hero is killed, it has to sit out the rest of the run. The Arcane Labyrinth has Mystics and Dura's Tears to resurrect fallen heroes, but adventures tend to be much less generous.
  • The Phoenix: There was once a race called the obsidian finches. They were a race of birds forged from the sun's energy by The Maker. He created them for one purpose, to rectify a corruption in the world's energies. Whenever the elements fell into imbalance, they would do battle with the resulting Elemental Embodiments of corruption and sacrifice most of their number in a ritual to restore the balance in a Vicious Cycle. The Hypogean, Framton, ultimately hunted them to extinction to feed off of their unique fire. There are only two left, one becoming a demoness, and the other, a goddess.
  • Play Every Day: Bounty Quests and Daily Missions, among other things, refresh on a daily basis, giving players incentive to return and check on the game every day.
  • Religion of Evil: Traitors to humanity occasionally form cults devoted to the Hypogeans. Even a small number of cultists can cause such horrific amounts of damage that The Witch Hunters are almost justified in massacring entire innocent villages rather than let even one cultist live.
  • The Remnant: The Arachin clan of Maulers was once one of the most feared. After Safiya backstabs her alliance with them, she singlehandedly takes out most of their army with a Magic Meteor. The survivors only narrowly manage to escape Safiya's pursuit, due to her being distracted by a possible Enemy Within created by the Power of the Void she absorbed.
  • Rewards Pass: By collecting Medals of Valor for Regal Rewards, players can earn rare hero soulstones to summon heroes, while collecting heroic merit for Champions of Esperia rewards Hero's Essence. If a Premium Pass is purchased, Regal Rewards will also award a player with Elite Hero Soulstones, Champions of Esperia rewards additional Hero's Essence, and both reward a hefty amount of diamonds.
  • Sapient Eat Sapient: While illegal, there have been Black Market butchers that have processed members of the Ya, a race of Artificial Hybrids created by mutating human test subjects.
  • Save Scumming:
    • The game automatically saves your progress after every campaign and King's Tower level, so you don't lose anything by just trying a level over and over again until you get the RNG required to win. Most cheese strategies rely on this (most infamously with Thoran).
    • While the Arcane Labyrinth and adventures have perma-death as a game mechanic, hero status is only updated after a player either wins or loses a fight. As such, manually quitting out of a losing battle allows you to avoid taking losses and roll for better luck or try again with a better formation. Likewise, manually exiting a Guild Hunt battle won't consume a challenge attempt.
    • Save-scumming is particularly encouraged in the Abyssal Expedition, since losing a battle consumes the full amount of stamina required for it while quitting the battle refunds most of it. Defied with the bosses in the Hunting Fields, which are fought using Challenge Seals that get consumed when you start the battle.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: Invoked by the Trials of God challenges. These offer you a laundry list of handicaps to apply to yourself while fighting through a gauntlet of enemies, and beating the challenge earns you rewards based on your difficulty; the more challenging you make it for yourself, the better the rewards.
  • Seven Deadly Sins: Several of them have clear representations among the Hypogean heroes, with Mehira being themed after Lust, Mezoth being Gluttony, Mortas being Greed, Lucretia being Wrath, and Zikis being Sloth.
  • Shout-Out:
  • SNK Boss: Campaign mode becomes nothing but a non-stop chain of these at later stages, where you'll regularly be facing enemies with twice the power rating of your team and a level advantage of several dozen due to the AI teams level-scaling much more quickly than you can. Hero synergy very quickly becomes more important than raw power.
  • Stone Wall: The Abyssal Expedition can take this to ridiculous extremes as some of the high-tiered tiles sometimes have a trio of Flora. Flora's abilities frustratingly keep her out of range of attacks until all other combat units die, but until then, she focuses on protecting surviving allies with a shield that mitigates 65% damage while constantly restoring their health. Without overwhelming force, a trio of Flora would quickly grind down a player's team with their constant Ao E damage without suffering a lot a return, as each Flora would constantly replenish the shield, essentially making whatever combat unit remains functionally invincible, especially if they're a tank unit like Thoren, Orthros or Lucien. These tiles were most likely made to tempt players into wasting stamina on trying to take them, making it more ideal to go after tiles that don't have any Flora units at all.
  • Three-Stat System: Heroes are divided into Agility, Strength, and Intelligence based on their skill sets and designs, but this doesn't really have an impact on the game beyond determining their general stat spread and the equipment they can wear.
  • Timed Mission: All battles have a timer of 90 seconds. Once the timer runs out in single-player battles, the player loses automatically. In PvP events, running out of time gives the win to the team with the highest total remaining health.
  • Uniqueness Rule:
    • You aren't able to have more than one copy of the same character in battle at once, even if on a different team in the same battle. This also applies to using Awakened versions of characters at the same time as their normal versions, though those can be on separate teams. CPU opponents are, of course, not bound by these restrictions.
    • You can't upgrade more than one copy of a given character past Legendary+ rank.
  • Upsetting the Balance: The rise of the Graveborn curse has upset the balance between life and death. Energies that would normally be freed up on a person's death are now increasingly being trapped by their existence, slowly choking out new life from growing. One of the world's fail-safes, an Elemental Embodiment known as the Balancer, would be capable of rectifying this problem, but would cause cataclysmic damage in the process. Since the living do not yet think the world's balance has crossed the Godzilla Threshold quite yet, armies band together to stop it by force.


Video Example(s):


Angelo's Cat Song

After Niru asks him to try to cheer up Theowyn (who's known as "The Wailing Widow" for a reason), and his first attempt at a ballad fails, renowned bard Angelo Gilder then resorts to performing something rather familiar with his cat Harry.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (7 votes)

Example of:

Main / SuspiciouslySimilarSong

Media sources: