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Video Game / Cathedral

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Cathedral is a 2D Side View Metroidvania, developed by Decemberborn Interactive and released on October 31st, 2019 for PC through Steam.

You play as the Knight, who awakens in the old Cathedral in the Shade Forest without memory. Initially, he doesn't know much, but after an encounter with a mysterious spirit and a near-lethal fall, he is discovered by the nearby villagers, including an old mage who may finally help him recall his past and how he ended up at the Cathedral in the first place, by piecing together clues from the Cathedral's relics.

Unrelated to the 1986 animated PBS documentary, English Doom Metal band, or a short sci-fi animation The Cathedral. In is also unconnected to the 2012 Interactive Fiction game The Shadow in the Cathedral.

Tropes present in this game:

  • All Your Powers Combined: The second phase of the Final Boss is a sequential remix of the most painful aspects of the preceding bosses.
  • Blob Monster: Small, pulsing blue-green slimes are the first enemies you face. Larger green slimes show up soon afterwards.
  • Boss-Arena Idiocy: Thalia, Queen of the Depths is invulnerable to your attacks. After generating her attacks, she gets tired out and floats immobile for a while, but even then she's not vulnerable to you. However, the level also features a mechanical platform which will have a huge trident protrude from it if you step on a switch to the side. Said trident is the only thing strong enough to damage her at first (after three times, the platform breaks, but she also gets vulnerable to your normal attacks), so if she fought the player anywhere else, she would have been fine.
    • Likewise, the battle with Nid, the Dragon King is reliant on him flying into a lightning barrier, which can only be generated at that arena through lightning the three braziers and activating a statue (a set of actions that requires complicated platforming every single time.)
  • Bullfight Boss: Oloc, the Bloodborn is a giant, blood-red rat that simply charges back and forth at you, while you need to jump up and stomp down on it every single time. To make this task more complicated, all the platforms in the vicinity are spiked, and there are buzzsaws going overhead that'll kill your knight if you jump at the wrong time.
  • Collection Sidequest: There is a bunch of optional items to collect in the game (from pieces of armor to scrolls and Ouroboros rings), and the game grades your item collection rate at the end.
  • Crosshair Aware: During the battle with The Conduit, a literal crosshair will appear on the screen and keep tracking your knight until it finally gets to zoom in, so the real trick is actually to let the four Conduit orbs aim at a point where you'll have enough space to dodge the resultant attack. Did we mention that it's a Platform Battle?
  • Defeat Equals Explosion: The demise of any boss is accompanied by a series of small explosions running over their body.
  • Dual Boss: After you defeat Salemacke's first phase, his head comes off, and you have to fight both of them at once.
  • Energy Ball: Multiple enemies and bosses have this as their ranged attack.
    • In his second phase, Salemacke, the Crypt Guardian can rain down dozens of small green flames from the fires that start burning in his outstretched palms.
  • Final Boss, New Dimension: Once you get him down to the third phase, Ardur transitions from World Eater and Destroyer to a Dying Demi-God, grows a pair of wings and transports both of you into the void of space.
  • Flunky Boss: Salehacke can summon a bunch of small skeletons during the times when it levitates off the ground, but these will fade away after just a few seconds. The large skulls on stalks, however, absolutely have to be dispatched by the player - all while there are still intermittent green flames raining down on them.
  • Heart Container: Played straight, to the point it literally keeps the same name.
  • Hello, [Insert Name Here]: You get to pick the knight's name at the start of the game.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: Chests containing gold coins are placed in the most unlikely and out-of-the-way locations.
  • Knightly Sword and Shield: You play as a knight fully encased in armor, and so you wield these from the start, and throughout the entire game.
  • Goomba Stomp: Played straight, and more justified than usual, since you are a knight in full plate armor and with heavy metal boots. It is even possible to stomp on some bosses: one of them, Oloc, the Bloodborn, is defeated exclusively through stomping.
  • Heroic Mime: Your knight doesn't speak at all. It is sometimes lampshaded, as the other characters remark "Not the talkative type, then?"
  • Money Spider: Oloc, the Bloodborn, of all bosses, falls apart into a bunch of gems and coin - not something rats, giant or otherwise, are normally associated with.
  • Mook Maker: Blood Knot is tangled mess of what seems like giant intestines. Even though it has a boss-sized health bar, it does nothing besides spawning a lot of disgusting (and surprisingly resilient) worms.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: The three gargoyle bosses, Bram the Firstborn, Clive, the Forest Dweller and Poe, the Phase Walker, all have the first names of the famous horror fiction writers: Bram Stoker, Clive Barker and Edgar Allan Poe.
  • Nintendo Hard: This is one of the more difficult Metroidvanias out there.
  • One-Winged Angel: The second phase of the Final Boss is a big change in terms of gameplay (see All Your Powers Combined) but actually doesn't change much physically. The third phase Ardur the Dying Demi-God, however, gets wings and also goes full-on Final Boss, New Dimension.
  • Playing with Fire: The first boss, Bram the Firstborn, is a gargoyle that both spits flame from his mouth and can briefly generate a ring of flames to protect himself.
    • Clive, the Forest Dweller is essentially powered-up version of Bram, and so he generates a lot more fireballs at once.
    • Poe, the Phase Walker is another version of these bosses. He doesn't spit as many fireballs as Clive, but he'll do the triple Spread Shot at a much faster rate than Bram, and will also teleport around frequently.
  • Rat Stomp: In the second half of the game, there's a giant rat boss named Oloc the Bloodborn. You then proceed to Goomba Stomp it to death.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: The three flying gargoyle bosses, Bram the Firstborn, Clive, the Forest Dweller and Poe, the Phase Walker have them. Same goes for the Final Boss, Ardur, the World Eater.
  • Sequential Boss: Salemacke, the Crypt Keeper has two explicit phases. The Final Boss has three.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Spikes of Doom: A frequent fixture of the level design. They are also present during the boss battles with Aug, Salemacke, Nidlong, the Dragon King, or Oloc, the Bloodborn.
  • Spread Shot: Bram, the Firstborn can spit out fireballs in a spread of three. Same goes for Poe, the Phase Walker, though he does it much faster.
    • The Necromancer can fire a spread of five small blue floating skulls (likely lost souls) from the tip of its staff, whenever it clings to the wall to get the best firing arc.
  • Sword Lines: The swing of the player's sword is traced by a blue line. The Anubis-like boss Salehacke has green lines tracing his khopesh.
  • Tactical Suicide Boss: Bram the Firstborn can easily fly out of the player's reach, yet is inexplicably determined to dive-bomb them every once in a while. His brothers, Clive, the Forest Dweller and Poe, the Phase Walker suffer from the same mistake.
  • Taken for Granite: Upon defeat, Bram the Firstborn turns to stone, then shatters. Its "brothers" Clive, the Forest Dweller and Poe, the Phase Walker also turn to stone, but are sturdy enough to avoid shattering.
  • Third Eye: The Final Boss, Ardur, has one, as he reveals when he casts off his hood before going into his second phase.
  • Tuckerization: Salemacke the Crypt Guardian is most likely named after Decemberborn's CEO, Acke Salem.