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Dust: An Elysian Tail is an independently-made, side-scrolling, Metroidvania, action RPG Fantasy game by former Jazz Jackrabbit animator Dean Dodrill (a.k.a. NoogyToad) of Humble Hearts for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Windows, Mac, and Linux PCs, and iOS on the App Store.

The story of the game centers around the eponymous protagonist, Dust, who has no recollection of his past memories. He sets out on a quest to find the answers he's looking for with the ancient Blade of Ahrah in hand, along with the sword's guardian, a nimbat named Fidget, to aid Dust during his quest. Along the way, he must also help various villagers in need of a hero. Eventually, he becomes involved in a conflict with a genocidal dictator who seems to know something about his past...

The core gameplay of Dust: An Elysian Tail is essentially a Metroidvania-styled game where players explore the vast world of Falana, fight various monsters, and gain special abilities to access new areas. Along the way, Dust can gain XP and raise his stats, pick-up raw materials to craft items, and accept side-quests from various villagers. Just don't let the hand-drawn scenery distract you.

The game was first planned as an Xbox LIVE Indie Games title during its early developmental stages, although after the submission of the game at Microsoft's Dream.Build.Play contest at PAX East of 2009, Dean Dodrill won the grand prize of a contract with Microsoft to release the game as an Xbox Live Arcade title at the event. Aside from the game's music (provided by Hyperduck SoundWorks), voice acting, and parts of the story, the game has been developed entirely by Dean Dodrill himself.

Dust: An Elysian Tail is also part of a series set within the An Elysian Tail universe; the series currently consists of this game and an animated film titled Elysian Tail that is also currently in production. The game was originally released on Xbox LIVE Arcade on August 15th, 2012 as part of the "Summer of Arcade" titles, and has since been released on Windows, Macintosh, Linux (via Steam, GOG, and Humble Bundle), PlayStation 4, iOS, and the Nintendo Switch.

Dean has confirmed that a sequel to the game is in development. But it won't be his next game, as he is working on another project unrelated to Elysian Tail.

For a similar 2D hack'n'slash with heavily stylized and hand-drawn graphics, see Muramasa: The Demon Blade.

The beautiful yet dangerous world of Falana is host to the following tropes:

  • 100% Completion: If exploring every nook and cranny of area while helping the needy in various side quests and making items from every last blueprint you find is your thing, then get ready to do a lot of that in this game. Full completion of the game even yields a 117% progress bar.
  • 20 Bear Asses:
    • Fale has a long series of these. They're completable from the enemies in the Abadis forest, but you can make a profit from simply buying the requested materials from the nearby shop. You also get an achievement for completing all of them.
    • Blop, an elder character in Mudpot, is similar to the classic woodsman example, desiring vengeance on the monsters inhabiting the Cirromon Caverns.
  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: Most noticeable is probably the Blade of Ahrah, though the airborne gunships used by Gaius' army are also plainly CG. It actually helps their aesthetic; most of their details are still hand-drawn, and the result is that they look shiny, polished, and just a tiny bit unnatural, which is entirely fitting for the only mechanical enemies in the entire game. Gaius' soldiers are also partially CG, most notably the armor and weapons.
  • Ability Required to Proceed: Resonance gems and Dust's climbing/jumping/sliding skills serve as barriers before you get them, forcing you to play ahead and get those things so you can come back to claim whatever secrets were blocked off by the lack of those skills...
    • ... Unless you're good at Sequence Breaking. Quite a few bits of treasure that normally require special skills can be accessed with clever enemy placement and the Aerial Dust Storm's homing effect. There's no getting around doors requiring Resonance gems though.
  • Aborted Arc: Haley seems like a potential Love Interest to Dust in that she acts like she's attracted to him, but that doesn't go anywhere beyond Fidget talking about it early on.
  • Absurdly High Level Cap: The level cap is 60, but you'll probably only get to 40 by the time you reach the end of the game, even if you have been backtracking to get all the secrets. Fortunately, the last area of the game provides items that give x1.5 XP boosts, and only a minimal amount of grinding is needed to rather quickly reach level 60. Those going for 100% Completion will need to farm about 60 item drops from the soldiers, so they'll hit 60 fast anyway.
  • Action Bomb: Blombs, floating creatures whose sole purpose is apparently to explode when anything that isn't another Blomb gets too close. They can only be harmed when taking a deep breath — otherwise, they're effectively invulnerable to just about any attack. (It's easier to just approach them and dash back out of range as they explode.) There are also explosive mutant zombies in the Sorrowing Meadows, which take the irritation a step further by refusing to blow up until after an unpredictable amount of fighting.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: You only need to buy one key from the shop to open all the chests and cages. The other five are just extras if you don't feel like hunting down all the rest.
    • As long as you sell at least of each kind of crafting material to the merchant, he'll slowly build up a stockpile of them over the course of the game, drastically reducing the need to farm for materials.
  • Auto-Revive: Revival Stones.
  • Auto-Save: The game auto-saves whenever you pass a save point, although the game does have the option of manual saves as well.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Most of the NPCs.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: The final battle between Dust and General Gaius in the midst of Everdawn Basin, a giant volcano.
  • Beneath the Earth: Mudpot, the underground village.
  • Bittersweet Ending: After the final showdown with General Gaius, Dust accepts that his time of living has reached its climax, allowing himself to be swallowed by volcanic magma and die. However, Dust's spirit remains, drifting though the winds with Ahrah.
  • Bleak Level: The Sorrowing Meadows. The Blade of Ahrah explains they were not always the way they are now, but they have been corrupted. All the trees are dead; your foes are mindless undead and twisted abominations.
  • Bonus Dungeon: The Cirelian Trials, which are Death Courses where you're tasked to move through an area, avoiding damage from obstacles and enemies, as quickly as possible to score high points. Scoring enough points rewards with gear you might not be able to get until later on.
  • Book Ends: Sort of. At the start of the game, when you first meet Fidget, it's after she's been chasing the Blade of Ahrah (which had flown off on its own). She begins to do the same thing again in the ending, only this time, it's not flying off on its own. Instead, it's drifting away alongside Dust's spirit.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Since the merchant slowly builds up a stock of any crafting items as long as you sell him at least one of that type, certain 20 Bear Asses-type quests can easily be beaten without farming by selling one of that item type to the merchant, waiting for him to stock the appropriate amount, and then buying them off of him to go turn in.
  • Button Mashing: Fidget panics and demands that Dust do this upon encountering their first monster.
    • TOM complains about how much his thumb hurts at the end of his review of this game.
    TOM: Man, my thumb hurts...
  • The Cameo: "Friends," who hang out at the Sanctuary once they're found. Examples include: Gomez, Tim, The Spelunker and Damsel, Meat Boy and Bandage Girl, The Maw, The Kid, The Dishwasher and Yuki.
  • Combos: Naturally, although players are free to mash their way to victory and enjoy the story rather than fight with finesse. To stress this, you get bonus XP for combo chains as long as you don't take any damage in the process, and one of the Achievements and side-quests requires you to get a 1,000-hit combo. This can be done in the very first boss fight, using Fidget's magic.
  • Chain Lightning: Fidget eventually gets the ability to shoot lightning bolts at enemies, which can be combined with Dust's Dust Storm technique and electrify near-by enemies at once.
  • Changing Clothes Is a Free Action: Exaggerated. Not only can you change clothes mid-battle, if you have Haley's transceiver, you can even CRAFT them!
  • Climactic Volcano Backdrop: The Everdawn Basin, where the beleaguered Moonbloods make their final stand.
  • Continuing is Painful: Inverted. On harder difficulties, using a revival stone upon death is the only way to instantly receive full health.
  • Controllable Helplessness: After you defeat Gaius, Dust is lying on the ground exhausted as Gaius is shouting his friend's name while hanging over a pit of lava: the only thing you can do is slowly crawl forward in an attempt to reach out to save him.
  • Convection, Schmonvection: In the volcano area, Dust can hang out near the lava with no ill effects.
  • Corpse Land: The Sorrowing Meadows. The only enemies you fight that aren't zombies are necromancers, and the level boss, who's a ghost.
  • Crapsaccharine World: It's a beautiful game with Scenery Porn everywhere and lighthearted fourth-wall humor, but...
  • Creator Cameo: Two of the "friends" that are rescued from cages are the two members of Hyperduck, the composers for the game. Unlocking both of them turns the Sanctuary into a rave.
  • Crew of One: Meta-wise, developing a video game is usually done with a team and besides voice acting and music, the number of developers is a grand total of one.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Dying sends you back to the last save point, assuming you don't have a resurrection stone. Since these are spaced every few sections, death rarely does more than force you to trek a section or two back to whatever choke point you died at.
  • Deep South: Mudpot comes across as this.
  • Degraded Boss: The Giants, first encountered early in the game where Dust saves Oneida and Geehan, later become regular enemies. The same happens for the Crows in Sorrowing Meadows and Frites in Blackmoor Mountains.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: Some of Gaius' soldiers carry spears with a bayonet attached.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: The parry mechanic requires you to both have good timing, and face your opponent. That said, it stuns the parried enemy, and it increases your damage against said enemy. Some foes require a parry in order to do any damage at all against them.
    • Everdawn Basin. The most common enemy is the Soldier, who constantly blocks your attacks or dashes past them to attack your from behind while you're still in the middle of a combo. They can even sometimes block an aerial Dust Storm, throwing off your rhythm.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: After rescuing Corbin and retrieving Gianni's laundry, Dust mentions how he'll talk to Gianni.
    Dust: Don't worry about Gianni. I'll sort him out.
    Fidget: Like the laundry!
    Dust: (sighs) ...yes, Fidget. Like the laundry...
  • Dub Step: Once you find both of the Hyperduck DJ friends, the Sanctuary turns into a rave party, and the music has a light peppering of dub.
  • Enemy Summoner: A flying wizard in the Sorrowing Meadows endlessly summons zombies and exploding zombies for as long as it can see you, until you run from it or kill it. For added annoyance, it teleports from melee attacks, making Fidget the only one capable of harming it.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Flashback shows that, despite him being a merciless assassin, Cassius never took pleasure in killing children, seemingly resorting to it only in specific situations. Upon finishing a sidequest where Dust saves Corbin, a kid sent by Gianni to wash his laundry in an area full of monsters, Dust speaks to Gianni in a calm but threatening tone that makes it very obvious it's his Cassius persona speaking through him.
  • Fantastic Racism: The story setting takes places during a ongoing war against the Moonblood (a race of lizard-people) in a campaign led by General Gaius to wipe them out.
  • Flat Character: Nearly all of the villains are completely one dimensional and lack any form of backstory or motivation for what they do.
  • Finishing Move: Performing an air throw that deals enough damage to finish off one of the gunships in the final level comes with a slow-motion effect and causes them to blow up when they hit the ground, which hits every enemy on the screen. However, if the air throw doesn't do enough damage to finish them off, the throw just turns into a normal slash.
  • Fission Mailed: A mild example. The final part of Reed's sidequest has Dust getting afflicted with a curse that slowly drains his health, and the only way to stop it is to get himself killed by a monster before the curse does him in. When said monster delivers the finishing blow, Dust goes through his usual death animation before suddenly getting back up again as if he'd been revived by a revival stone.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: A lot of the humanoid characters have this.
  • French Jerk: Gianni, a condescending Jerkass who'd rather not go outside Aurora Village to do his laundry for fear of being attacked by monsters. So he has a small child do it for him, and shows less concern for the boy's safety when he's attacked than he does for whether or not his laundry is done. When you retrieve his laundry, you have to option to put some poison ivy in with it to give him some comeuppance.
  • Fungus Humongous: Found in the Cirromon Caverns, where they infrequently drop liquid on you; sometimes they heal you (blue), most of the time they spray poison at you (red).
  • Funny Background Event: You can use the right stick to pan the map screen upwards to see Fidget sitting on a twig roasting and eating marshmallows or sleeping.
  • Game-Breaking Bug:
    • There's a few in the Xbox 360 version in the Blackmoor Mountains. One in particular you should be aware of is that if you try to slide on certain floors, the game glitches out and causes you to fall through the ground instead as if it was a thin platform.
    • Not even the PC version is safe. Early versions of it could cause your CPU to overload and overheat before you could even see anything other than a pure white screen.
    • Also in PC Version, there's a bug where falling faster than the camera or leaving the camera view could crash the game. Unlike the previously CPU eater bug, this one was not fixed in any update.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Possibly the unnamed king General Gaius and Cassius served.
  • Harder Than Hard: If Tough mode wasn't challenging enough for you, how about trying your hand at the Hardcore mode? Many enemies can kill you in one or two hits which makes managing your gear essential, your invincibility after being hit lasts only half a second, and save points do not heal you unless you have less than 10% health remaining (and even then only slightly).
  • He Knows About Timed Hits: Ahrah serves as a tutorial for the controls as you learn new skills. Due to the game being ported across numerous platforms, he will say to press specific buttons while the text will show the corresponding button to that platform. For example, using an Xbox controller for the PC port will show the Xbox controller buttons.
  • Heart Container: The twelve "Friends" you rescue throughout the game gives Dust a 5% bonus to his maximum HP, up to a total of 60% extra HP.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The Moonblood Camp hidden in Everdawn Basin.
  • Hilarious Outtakes: See here.
  • Homage: To the developer's favorite side-scrolling games.
  • Hope Spot: After braving the dangerous terrain of the Cirromon Caverns and defeating Lady Tethys, arguably the most difficult boss so far, Dust and Fidget return to Mudpot. They are greeted by a cheerful Bopo, and his father's life seems to have been saved... And then his mother comes over to them.
    Momop: Bopo, darlin'... Please come inside.
  • How Did You Know? I Didn't: During a sidequest, Dust gets possessed by an evil presence from a box. The holder of the box, Reed, suggests that Dust kill himself to get rid of the presence. Despite initial concerns, Dust does so, and it's a success. When he asks Reed how he knew that would work, Reed replies that he didn't and had a revival stone ready just in case. Dust points out that it was entirely fortuitous the the child who originally found the box didn't have the curiosity to open it.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: Food is how you heal in this game. You can scarf down numerous chickens, soups, burgers, and crab legs with no ill effects. In fact, some foods actually boost your stats and heal you of ailments.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal: Lampshaded.
    Dust: *takes a Gappy Sheep*
    Fidget: "Wait... Did you..."
    Dust: "Hmm?"
    Fidget: "Did you just put that thing in your inventory?"
    Dust: "Yeah. (Beat) What?"
    Fidget: "Okay then."
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: The entirety of the battle between Dust and General Gaius. However, it bears an unusual twist: it's an extremely rare villainous example. Throughout the entire fight, it's Gaius doing this to Dust, appealing to the soul and memories of his old friend and ally, Cassius. What keeps this from being a "They Still Belong to Us" Lecture is that Gaius doesn't seem to be trying to deceive Dust or cause discord between Dust and his allies; he truly believes that there are some remnants of Cassius somewhere inside Dust.
  • Impossible Item Drop: Why certain monsters are carrying blueprints for items is never explained. Even weirder is when they drop healing items, like a rock monster with a cooked and iced cinnamon roll or a maggot with a hot cup of cocoa.
  • Inexplicably Preserved Dungeon Meat: Lampshaded with the Mysterious Wall Chicken, which appears whenever Dust breaks through a breakable wall. Its in-game description reads "Found embedded in a wall, this fully-cooked and seasoned chicken comes from unknown origins." There's also the perfectly preserved food you sometimes find in various magically-locked chests.
  • Infinity +1 Sword:
    • Battle Master's Pendant is probably closest to one; it doubles Dust's base attack and you can only get blueprints for it from the enemies in the final area.
    • The best augment is Mithrarin's Augment, while the best armor is Mithrarin's Robe. Naturally, you don't get them until the last level of the game.
    • For Fidget, the Foul Ring of Devastation triples the base stat, and as a ring it can be worn twice. Combine this with Mithrarin's Augment plus Battle Master's Pendant, with all items multiplying on top of each other, and you end up with a total bonus of x27!
  • Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: Opening chests and cages requires these, which are scattered about the game world. One size fits all, apparently, but each is only good for one use with cages requiring 4 keys. Arguably justified in that the keys and the locks are explicitly said to be magical and not even Ahrah can destroy them.
  • Invisible Monsters: They show up in chapter 5. They create a mild distortion which makes them somewhat visible, but they're still pretty hard to spot in the melee, especially if you're already busy with one.
  • Irony: General Gaius believes that Dust is merely his friend Cassius under a spell by the Moonbloods. The ironic part is that this is true. While this in no way justifies the genocide, the Moonbloods cast a spell that would call upon the Sen-Mithrarin, one warrior made from two opposite souls that could always keep each other in balance. Cassius was the fearless warrior half, and became Sen-Mithrarin along with a boy named Jin, who'd killed him for murdering his family of Moonblood sympathizers. They hoped that Jin's conscience would temper Cassius' bloodthirstiness, and they needed Cassius' body and fighting skills, but the resulting gestalt entity has his own personality, due largely in part to the amnesia deliberately given to him to keep his old identities from getting in the way.
  • Item Crafting: As Dust pummels foes into oblivion, they often leave behind raw materials such as lumber, scrap metals, and other resources to craft equipment like armor, pendants, and rings.
  • Joke Item: The Ugly Pendant which sharply reduces your stats (their "bonuses" are x0,1 Attack, Defense and Fidget). One can wear it for Self-Imposed Challenge or rack up 1000 combo hits easily.
  • Lag Cancel: The dodge move can cancel the animations of various attacks, allowing for greater combo variety.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Of the game's many Metroidvania tropes. Really, there's a good chance that Dust's nice hat is a lampshade. Check out the Leaning on the Fourth Wall entry and the Shout-Out page; expect a lampshade for most of these examples.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Everdawn Basin, which takes place at a volcano.
  • Luck Stat: This seems to determine your critical hit chances and item drop rates. Notably, it's the only stat that can't be increased by leveling up and can only be affected by your equipment.
  • The Lost Woods: The Glade, the game's starting point, as well as other forest areas.
  • Magic Missile Storm: It's possible to do this by having Fidget fire a couple of magic projectiles, then use Dust Storm to give them more energy and home in on every enemy on the screen.
  • Medium Awareness
    • When Dust and Fidget encounter their first Blomb, which blows up a Mook in a cutscene (and right next to a save point):
    Fidget: "Oh my. He really should have saved first."
    • There's an actual sidequest wherein you need to achieve a 1000 hit combo to complete it; that is all.
    • Fidget points out how much Dust flies around the screen when he activates his Dust Storm while jumping.
    • During a quest to find a farmer's strayed livestock, Fidget is freaked out when Dust puts a sheep into his inventory. Dust acts like it is completely ordinary.
    • Fidget also points out how Dust always has to start a fire whenever he pulls out the map when talking to Old Grey Eyes about their flameless light magic.
    • This exchange early in the game:
    Fidget: "AHHH!! Monsters!"
    Ahrah: "Calm yourself, Fidget. Dust, focus! Remember what you've learned thus far."
    Fidget: "No, no! Mash the buttons! DO SOMETHING!!"
  • Metroidvania: The game consists of a couple of reasonably large maps with hidden secrets to find, and places that you need to return to once you have more abilities.
  • Min-Maxing: Not possible with the stat system. When allocating skill gems, you can only boost one stat four points higher than the rest. The only way to unlock the next level of those skills is to put one gem into each stat.
  • Money Spider: Enemies drop gold coins and sacks of gold. They also drop various types of inventory items; some are at least fairly sensible Shop Fodder (body parts), others make no sense at all (jewelry, item blueprints, prepared food).
  • Mushroom Man: There's a race of kind-of Mushroom people living in Mudpot.
  • Mundane Utility: The Dust Storm attack, and even more so its aerial variant, also works quite well for picking the coins and materials left in your path of destruction. Its wind effect will cause all the items to fly into its vortex and often right into you as well for an incredibly easy pickup. Blueprints will still need to be picked up by hand, however.
  • Mystical Cave: All water in the underground village of Mudpot comes from a spring deep in the Cirromon Caverns, where the goddess Lady Tethys lives.
  • Non-Human Undead: As can be expected from the setting, the zombies found in the Sorrowing Meadows all have tails and digitigrade gait, heavily implying that they're all Moonbloods Gaius has slain.
  • Not So Above It All: Keep bugging Matti. You can tell that Dust is clearly having fun at his expense.
  • Offscreen Start Bonus: The very first screen contains a Treasure Key if you go left.
  • Organ Drops: Most of what you gather from enemies for crafting is the various body parts left behind.
  • Overly Narrow Superlative: The shopkeeper in Aurora Village claims to have "the best selection you'll ever find in this shop at this moment in time".
  • Pet the Dog: As much of a genocidal monster as General Gaius is, he genuinely cares about his friend Cassius.
  • Point-and-Click Map: A beautifully drawn one, used to pick which locations in Falana to go to.
  • The Power of Love: Described on the Wedding Ring, which gives Dust some of the best stat boosts in all areas though it's third best for the Fidget stat.
  • Punny Name: Fale, the guy in Aurora Village who supplies the guards of the village with sub-par equipment. Finishing all of his quests unlocks the Achievement "Opposite of Fail", which makes it more obvious.
    • Apparently the German translator tried it, at least. The achievement is called "Fales Lächeln", which literally translates to "Fale's smile", but sounds like "a pale/wan smile". Not really great, but considering the names of the persons remained the same in the translation…
    • The title of the game itself is play on Tale/Tail, given the characters are all anthropomorphic animals.
  • Properly Paranoid: At the very least, Reed's paranoia about the box is justified, as it contains an evil presence.
  • Quest for Identity: One of the driving factors of the story.
  • Quieting the Unquiet Dead: An unusual example, as you both fight and help the same undead being. In the Sorrowing Meadows, you have to collect four meaningful objects while sometimes being pursued by the monstrous ghost of Baron Kane. Once they're collected, you fight Kane himself. Defeating him restores him to his right mind, allowing him to rest in peace.
  • Random Drop Booster: Certain rings will increase the item drop rate by 1.5 or 3.
  • The Reveal: In the aptly-named "Revelations" chapter.
  • Save Point: The Save Monuments scattered throughout the game allows you to save your progress and replenish your HP (depending on the difficulty). You can also warp to the world map from one if you have a Teleport Stone on hand.
  • Scenery Porn: This game is up to par with Vanillaware in terms of beautifully detailed and hand-drawn scenery.
  • Sequel Hook: At the very end of the game, after Dust's apparent sacrifice, Ginger and Fidget see his spirit and the Blade of Ahrah rise from the volcano and fly off, with Fidget chasing after them; furthermore, the Moonblood Elder all but directly states that Dust is not done just yet. Not to mention that, just before the final battle, Gaius suggests that he's just the middle man, and the attempted genocide of the Moonbloods was ordered by someone else — whom is probably the king he serves, as Cassius implies in a flashback.
  • Shop Fodder:
    • The early materials, such as imp hides and avee claws, become this in late-game, since the items that you need will usually not use them.
    • The "junk" material is specifically described as "Serves no purpose. Sell it." Subverted in that you actually need it to craft a Ring of the Scavenger.
  • Shout-Out: So many that they have their own page.
  • Side Quest: A handful of them, they range from collection sidequests to more unique ones.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Blackmoor Mountains. Complete with avalanches, falling icicles, and blinding blizzards. Oddly enough, there isn't any actual slippery ice to slide on. And thank goodness for small favors.
  • Spectacular Spinning: Dust's Dust Storm technique, from twirling Ahrah with a single hand, to an aerial Spin Attack. The latter ability is a Game-Breaker due to the enemies' inability to deal with it properly — only a couple of enemies can knock Dust out of it with any degree of success — and its increased damage compared to the standing version. The standing Dust Storm is also a great way to rack up high combos on weak enemies, since it does very little damage.
  • Stalactite Spite: Several sections in the Blackmoor Mountains have falling icicles trying to impale you.
  • Status Effects: There are enemies that can poison Dust and others that can "silence" Fidget, making her unable to cast her projectiles. Dust will also be affected by a health-drain effect similar to poison if he opens the mysterious box.
  • Story Difficulty Setting: The easiest difficulty level is marked as such.
  • Suicide by Cop: Inverted in an early side quest. When Dust gets infected with an evil entity from an opened box, the only way to get rid of it is to get a monster to kill him before the curse does. Gameplay-wise, the curse can't kill you, but only knocks you down to 1 HP.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: PoPop's death. He had been ill for quite a while and even with the restoration of their healing water, he simply didn't have the strength left to last long enough for a full recovery. Momop admits that he wouldn't have recovered even if the water had returned days before.
  • A Taste of Power: In the trial version of the game, players are given almost every ability in the game except the Iron Grip and Boost Jump ability.
  • Underground Level: The Cirromon Caverns, a large network of caves located underneath Aurora Village.
  • The Unintelligible: Matti, Haley's younger brother, who only speaks in grumbles.
  • Upgrade Artifact: The magical Blade of Ahrah makes its wielder a master swordsman while the blade is held...possibly. Since its wielders can jump higher while attacking targets, it may be that Ahrah is telekinetically manoeuvering his own 'body' and the wielder is just holding on to him while he does it.
  • Violation of Common Sense: Obviously the only way to rid yourself of a life-draining curse is to kill yourself before the curse does. Not even the guy who told you to do it was fully expecting it to work.
  • Visible Invisibility: Gaius' scouts/assassinsnote  are either totally invisible, or rendered as blurred outlines that occasionally flicker with electricity and distort their surroundings. Dust's attacks cannot actually connect with them unless they are partially-visible. Easiest way to force them to become visible? Fidget's electrical attack.
  • The War Sequence: Everdawn Basin: Dust and the Moonbloods vs. the forces of General Gaius.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: The aforementioned side-quest of choosing to lace Gianni's laundry with poison ivy. Let's just say Dust and Fidget are doing karma's work to teach Gianni a lesson for abandoning a young boy in the middle of nowhere, if the player chooses to do so.
  • Winds Are Ghosts: In the ending, Ginger and Fidget notice the winds carrying the spirit of Dust and the Blade of Ahrah off into the distance, and decide to chase after it.
  • World of Funny Animals: There are no humans in the gamenote . Everyone is an anthropomorphic animal of some kind, with most being some kind of mouse on account of the primary hub in the game being a village of theirs.
  • You Did Everything You Could:
    Fidget: We did everything right, Dust. Everything we were supposed to do.
    Dust: And sometimes that is not enough.