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"Fight through waves of enemies."

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Epic Battle Fantasy is a series of flash games developed by Matt Roszak (AKA "Kupo707", which was changed to "Kupo Games" sometime around the release of EBF4). It consists of three individual series: the main Epic Battle Fantasy series of Eastern RPGs (consisting of five games), as well as two spin-offs.

The main Epic Battle Fantasy series is your standard turn-based RPG, with not too much deviation from the standard system, at least initially. What makes the game stand out more is its style: the world of the series is an Anachronism Stew with the Fantasy Kitchen Sink in effect, and so throughout all the games, you'll be fighting off enemies like cats, slimes, catslimes, giant insects, turtles, robots, monoliths, dragons, and many others, using weapons ranging from traditional magic to airstrikes and boomboxes. Also present in the series are dozens of Shout Outs, numerous lampshades, and gameplay that requires taking use of what would be Useless Useful Spells in other games.

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The plot for the original Epic Battle Fantasy game is literally non-existent: you play as Matt, a Magic Knight-type character in pirate gear who uses "Bushido" (and a rather impressive collection of specialized swords and other weapons) along with his teammate, a Fanservice-y Red Mage named Natalie (or Natz for short). You fight wave after wave of enemies with the occasional stop at a shop to buy items.

The second game continues the fight-only tradition (with an actual plot this time), but now there are save points and a minigame you can play to earn more money for the shops; said minigame stars the Series Mascot, a blue, limbless Cute Kitten named NoLegs, who defected to the heroes after being a boss in the first game. After defeating the final boss, a neo-Nazi named Lance who tried to take over the world, he sides with the heroes and joins the party for the third game.

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The third game in the main series involves the heroes (along with Lance, now a member of the team) cruelly reduced to Level 0 after releasing an Eldritch Abomination named Akron by poking it with their weapons. The game now uses a more traditional RPG approach, where the characters walk around a world map, level up, learn new skills (and re-learn old ones), etc. They travel across several locales, do optional fetch quests for Non Player Characters, and get into the occasional minigame.

The fourth game has the new heroine, Anna, tracking down the 3 party members after her village was ransacked of many things, most importantly a jewel kept there. Anna starts the quest looking for the rest of the party to try and get the jewel back, but when it turns out to be missing, she drags the team along to find it.

The potential creation of the fifth game was unclear for some time, but it was eventually confirmed to be in early development on Matt's website. It was released on Steam on November 30, 2018.

The two spin-off series include Bullet Heaven, a Touhou-inspired Bullet Hell Shoot 'em Up, which gained a sequel, and an action Platform Game titled Adventure Story.

You can play the games for free on Newgrounds or Kongregate note :

Has grown its own Shout-Out page.


Tropes used in Epic Battle Fantasy:

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     Tropes A-E 
  • Ability Required to Proceed: The axe, torch, hammer, ladder, and three kinds of boots will be obtained throughout the fourth game, and it's deliberately patterned after Pokémon. You even get achievements called "Used Cut", "Used Flash", "Used Rock Smash", and "Used ...Ladder?". Non-player characters at Goldenbrick Resort in EBF4 call the stepladder "legendary" since there is only one in the entire world. Even more in EBF5, which adds number of items such as shovel and second type of hammer, but also the items that are necessary only for extra loot, like Cloud Boots.
  • Absurdly High Level Cap: In the fourth game, there is no level cap, but medals are only rewarded at 10 level intervals up to level 40. Playing in New Game+ averts this as you will reach level 40 within the second playthrough, and likely 50 by the end of the third!
  • Achievement System: The games started to include a "Medals" system in the second game. Throughout most of the games, these are nothing but Cosmetic Awards. In the third game, bonus areas containing loot are unlocked as the player unlocks tens of medals. In the fifth, a fanart gallery and its numerous rooms (including fights and loot) are locked until the players earns enough medals to get through them.
  • Actually Four Mooks: From the third game onwards, a single sprite on the map represents a group of monsters, so that harmless-looking bush could actually contain a four-wave long marathon battle. Fortunately, the encounter usually shows the strongest monster on the map, so there aren't too many bad surprises.
  • A-Cup Angst: Anna asks Natz what she eats to get such big breasts. Natz is flustered, Lance is eager to find out, and Matt is intently pretending that he didn't hear a thing.
    • If Natz later dies with Anna in the party, Anna may comment that Natz's 'flab' doesn't cushion attacks after all. In context with the above conversation, she comes across as less mean and more jealous.
  • Adorable Evil Minions: Kittens, slimes, and bushes show up throughout the series as mooks.
    • The first two dog enemies in EBF4 have an animation where they wiggle their front paws. Both girls squee over it.
  • Affectionate Parody: Of Final Fantasy and JRPGs in general.
  • Airborne Mook:
    • Most flying enemies in general have high evade rates, making them a pain to hit if you don't debuff their evasion beforehand. They also tend to be resistant to Earth damage.
    • The main exception is in the first game, where there is no accuracy or evasion stat, and all attacks always hit.
  • Allegedly Free Game:
    • A downplayed version in the fourth game, in which unlocking all items as well as the harder difficulty New Game+ requires a $7.50 donation to Roszak. These are just extras, though; the game is fully beatable without purchasing these and you get a pretty full selection of equipment anyway, and it plays out more like a bonus expansion pack to an already complete game.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 follows the same pattern; you can play the entire game for free, but paying unlocks three extra characters, several new stages (including tougher bosses and survival levels), and an instant cash bonus.
  • All There in the Manual: In the first game, Matt and Natalie are only referred to as "P1" and "P2" in gameplay; their names can be seen in the art gallery, along with the names of all the foes.
  • Always Check Behind the Chair: Some treasure chests from the third game onwards are hidden behind the Obstructive Foreground, requiring the player to check behind places like bushes, a gravestone, and a snow sculpture (and in one case, the menu button).
  • And I Must Scream:
    • During the fourth game, at the second village near the optional graveyard area, one of the NPCs will bring up a rumour about how her friend was supposedly turned into a tree. Going into the graveyard area you'll see a lot of living trees, which the main characters show pity towards if you try to interact with. It's stated during the mentioned discussion that this is fairly common.
    • The equipment upgrade system in EBF5 involves using captured foes to upgrade equipment. Presumably while still alive!
  • And Man Grew Proud: What happened to the once-mighty cat civilization? You find out the truth at the end of EBF4.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Among the many things in the shop in Bullet Heaven 2 is alternate player skins. They initially were just cosmetic, but the game was eventually updated to give them slight bonuses to certain stats.
  • Animesque: The art style makes this obvious.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • In the fourth game, the Instant Death status ailment instantly charges your limit break. Not only can this turn the tide, it can make it easier to recharge it before a boss battle.
    • Battles can be fled at any time, so you can scan enemies without losing a turn. You can also select the difficulty at any time (since you only get achievements for beating bosses on epic).
    • In the second game, if Natz is hit with the Seal status effect, she can still use Purify to un-Seal herself.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 includes several ways to lessen the Sequel Difficulty Spike, including bullet clearing after every wave, the ability to bomb and avoid taking damage (effectively giving you extra hits and letting you lessen the blow of losing a perfect wave streak), and not requiring a restart if the bonus waves are failed. Interestingly, there are handicaps that allow you to remove the former two features, in exchange for a better score multiplier.
  • Antidote Effect: Averted in the second game; antidotes cure all three status ailments (Poison, Stun, and Seal), and if Natz is sealed, it's usually better to toss an Antidote her way instead of wasting her turn casting Purify.
  • Antimatter: In the fourth game, when Lance's Antimatter is used, he says:
    In case you were wondering, my guns are powered by antimatter-catalyzed nuclear pulses!
  • Anything That Moves: The Beholder. From the protagonists to every enemy in the second game: cats, bees, a mecha, a mecha's sword and shield, jellyfish, turtles, a giant worm (labeled giant mutant penis, of all things!), said worm's tail, ghosts, the skeleton of two hydra heads, "fly bots", the top of a tank, the tank's cannons, the tank's electrical equipment, a nuke, the tank itself, and the tank's pilot. The fourth game allows it to molest the god of the planet, among other things. It's in all four games, by the way.
  • Approval of God: The games themselves from 2 onward have gallery sections displaying fanart, and Matt Roszak's official website posts fanart regularly under the fanart category. The fifth game has an actual in-game fanart gallery. To see it all, you'll have to have enough medals.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: With Anna joining the party in the fourth game, the party can only have three members at once. Fortunately, the unused party member can be swapped in at any time during battle without wasting a turn.
  • Arboreal Abode: All the buildings in Greenwood Village are hollowed out trees.
  • Artistic License – Economics: In EBF4, one of Lance's idle animations is him reading a newspaper. Quoth one of the randomly-picked headlines that may appear:
    ENTIRE WORLD IN DEBT
    BANKS SAY "oops"
  • Art Shift: The cutscenes in the fourth and fifth games are rendered in a construction-paper like artstyle.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Anna, a quest NPC in the third game, is a playable character in the fourth and considered by the party members to be the main character. She bears an uncanny resemblance to the merchant from the first game — who is essentially the first person you see.
    • NoLegs was a boss in the first game, a summon from the second game onward, and was promoted to a full-on party member in EBF5.
  • Ascended Meme:
    • The Monoliths' Boss in Mook Clothing status becomes this in Bullet Heaven 2, when the appearance of a Cosmic Monolith midway through the game causes the entire party to panic.
    • One of the higher-rated comments on Bullet Heaven is a statement to the effect that after you've beaten the final boss, it feels like you can go out in a rainstorm and not get wet, because you can dance between the raindrops. Come Bullet Heaven 2...
      Lance: I guess the best way to stay dry in the rain is to get good at playing Bullet Hell games.
  • Astral Finale:
    • The black hole/space zone in Epic Battle Fantasy 3.
    • The final world in Bullet Heaven 2 is space-themed.
    • EBF5 has a space-themed area called The Beyond, accessed by placing orbs representing the 4 classical elements (fire, earth, air, and water) into their respective pedestals in the middle of The Rapture to activate a portal.
  • Attack Reflector:
    • In Adventure Story, some projectiles and even quite a few enemies can be deflected by your sword attacks. There are achievements related to this, too!
    • EBF5 has several types of mirrors, which reflect either physical or magical (or both!) damage types to any active party member, depending on the mirror. Hitting them with a powerful attack can smash them, preventing this effect while giving 3 turns of Bad Luck to the attacker. Also Voodoo dolls, which return the damage to whoever they represent even if they are in backup, but it also applies to healing.
  • Author Appeal: Roszak has stated that he made the series so he can see a game with everything he liked. Suffice to say, he likes a lot of things.
    • He loves cats. Especially armless and legless cats, like the series' mascot NoLegs.
  • Author Avatar:
    • Matt, named after Matt Roszak. Roszak's Newgrounds account is even called matt_likes_swords.
    • Phyrnna, the series' music composer, has her mascot (also called Phyrnna) appear in Bullet Heaven 2. She's one of the playable characters available in the Steam version or via the expansion pack.
  • Avenging the Villain: In 5, some of the optional bosses (Sol, Skadi, and Vulcan) will attack the party in order to avenge their story boss counterparts.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • Matt's Soul Eater sword, which greatly boosts his physical attack at the cost of large cuts to everything else. It's just not worth it on most difficulties, at least not without extensive upgrading (in the third and fourth games).
    • The Catastrophe summon in the first game, which most people recommend using once in the entire game, to deal the last blow to the final boss, because it nearly kills Natalie when used. Ion in the second game does damage to both party members, though the damage isn't quite as bad. The two self-damaging limit breaks in 3 are pretty tame by comparison, especially since you're already spending your whole limit bar and want to get as much bang out of that turn as possible.
    • The Annihilate Limit Break supposedly has a "high chance" of inflicting Death to every enemy onscreen. Naturally, all bosses are immune, most stronger enemies are also immune, and against standard mooks, it's just a waste.
    • The Black Hole Limit Break is about as dangerous to your party as it is to the enemies. The Nuke too, especially in EBF5, where it swaps current weather for Radiation that has a chance to lower maximum HP of any player character on the battlefield.
    • Bombs in the Bullet Heaven series are powerful, but using one will lower your score, which is important for several achievements. It's especially harmful in the sequel, where getting a perfect wave requires not using bombs; since perfect waves give out hearts and diamonds, abusing bombs will make it harder to beat later waves.
    • EBF5 has a weapon for No Legs, Masamune. Said weapon multiplies No Legs' attack and magic by 3 as well as adding 30% to evasion and accuracy. The catch? It reduces his HP by 70%. Considering his HP is already pretty low to begin with, it really turns him into Glass Cannon unless you boost his evasion further.
  • Backtracking: In the fourth game, chests and secret levels are often blocked by obstacles that the player can't currently bypass. The characters at one point comment on the amount of backtracking in the game. Same applies to the fifth game.
  • Badass Adorable:
    • NoLegs the cat goes One-Man Army on whole zerg rushes of enemies during the bonus stages of EBF2, and is top tier in Bullet Heaven. He is also a usable summon in EBF4 that strikes all enemies and is fantastically useful in the early game, though tougher enemies later on make him somewhat obsolete. Though there's the Kitten Fort summon, where he returns leading a wagon-fortress, and is much more useful, by way of giving you a buff that staves off One-Hit Kill effects, on top of running the enemy over. Even better, NoLegs can auto-summon himself in between turns, and does this regularly, without any equipment restrictions or requirements, making him a constant source of damage. He becomes a full-blown party member in EBF5.
    • Meow Meow, a recurring character who wields a sword bigger than any other in the game, and does massive amounts of damage. He slightly resembles Cloud Strife of Final Fantasy VII, but that's just his cape and sword. His sword can also break in his attack, doing more damage but also hurting you.
  • Badass Longcoat: The Swordslinger/Gunslinger enemies are robot heads, a Nice Hat, and a duster containing a ridiculous amount of swords/guns.
  • Badass Normal:
    • For a given definition of "normal", Lance. Natalie is a Magical Girl and Matt is a Magic Knight, while Lance does not appear to know magic per se at all. Despite this, he is no weaker than the rest of the party, relying primarily on very powerful guns, but also tanks, nukes, ion cannons...
    • Anna is even better at this, being just as good at killing stuff as her companions, except she mostly only uses bows.
  • Bag of Kidnapping: EBF5 with its capture mechanic. Well, more like box/crate/container of kidnapping, but close enough.
  • Bag of Sharing: Items are put in a single section of the inventory, and anyone can access it. When equipment is introduced from the third game onwards, there's only a single copy of each piece, which keeps the system simple.
  • Bag of Spilling:
    • Justified in the third game, where doing something stupid makes the heroes lose all their equipment and get depowered.
    • Used again in the fourth game, but this time no justification is given. Matt is even shown carrying a huge sack of loot when he's introduced, yet in the following scene, he has nothing but his clothes and the sword on his back. (Maybe Anna confiscated it or something, who knows.)
    • Justified in fifth game, since the series is soft-reset.
  • Barrier Change Boss:
    • Akron in EBF3. You need to see the orbs on his body to find out what he will change to next. Thankfully, once you scan him, you'll be able to see his current weaknesses and resistances for the rest of the fight.
    • EBF4 has the Crystal Golem, who changes between Fire/Ice/Lightning every time it's hit. This includes individual hits from multi-hit attacks. Like Akron, scanning it once reveals its affinities for the rest of the fight.
    • EBF5 has The Cosmic Gigalith that is immune to every element save for one from which it takes quadruple damage.
  • Barbarian Hero: Matt has many elements of one, naturally Played for Laughs. He tends to focus more on brute force than anything, carries an assortment of huge swords and maces, is not very smart, tends to focus more on loot and battle than actually saving people (having no qualms breaking into houses to steal valuables), and he will eat anything.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Our heroes have no problem walking around and fighting in space without oxygen sources in the fifth game. Not even the extra damage they take after their home planet's deleted explains it - that's just them trying to resist being deleted too.
  • Beach Episode:
    • In the third game, a cutscene at Rock Lake has the party indulge in some fun in the sun. Unsurprisingly, Natalie chooses to wear a bandeau... that nearly gets ripped off by a squid.
    • The above is referenced in the fourth game, when visiting the beach at Goldenbrick Resort.
  • Bears Are Bad News: The fourth game has several types of bears as enemies. They get the Berserk status when they are hit with a strong attack.
  • Beehive Barrier: The Barrier spell.
  • Better Than a Bare Bulb: The fourth game is quite meta, and to cap it off, the ending has our protagonists say their opinions on the story, and Matt goes on to claim he negotiated the New Game+ with the developer.
    • The fifth game has the characters give you explicit tips with the game (and not just in-universe logical stuff like "We should try zapping wet enemies", stuff like "Can anyone use Reflex to remove Shroud?" like the skill says it does) and adds an in-game fanart gallery that the party, naturally, will comment on seeing.
  • BFG: Lance likes them. Some enemies also use them. The Gunslingers in particular have a massive cannon that attempts to instantly kill a party member. This is also lampshaded in-game: when the attack is first used, the characters mention that if it hits, your chances of survival are low, but with a gun that huge, their accuracy can't be good...
  • BFS:
    • Lance's weapons. Some are also gunblades.
    • A lot of Matt's swords. Meow Meow the kitty wields a huge meat cleaver to chop your enemies into pieces.
    • Some enemies too. Akron's lower body is able to belch a massive Laser Blade for massive damage to the whole party. His Evil Worm can also regurgitate a huge sword to hit a party member. Swordslinger robots possess enormous swords as well.
    • Parodied by a line from Matt in EBF5. He explains his Ragnarok Limit Break is a bunch of "swords" falling from the sky because they're too big for him to hope to attack with conventionally.
  • Big Eater / Extreme Omnivore:
    • Matt. Guess what he and Natalie do to the Giant Sand Worm after defeating it in the second game. You know, the one with poisonous blood.
    • Taken Up to Eleven in the third game. First, after defeating Jack, you get to play the first minigame, which plays this trope on NoLegs, but this is optional. In the following cutscene, the whole group throws up while eating slimes (except for Natalie; she threw up before she could eat one). Then it is implied that they ate the Giant Squid boss. Finally, Matt and Lance try to eat the last Woolly Mammoth after defeating it. Only Natz's pity for the creature saves it from becoming dinner. This whole routine is repeated in EBF4, with Anna in place of Natalie, and if you find the mammoth in the Bonus Dungeon, even she'll consent to eating it on the grounds that it won't be canon.
    • After the party defeats a turtle enemy:
    Matt: Let's make a turtle soup out of this guy!
    • In the volcano area, Matt comments that it's a shame they didn't get to kill whatever left those giant skeletons around, because the lava would've made it easy to cook. A few screens later, they fight a dragon, though sadly aren't shown eating it.
    • In the fourth game, after Anna takes Matt hostage because she suspects he stole the crystal, she joins him in battle. The first few comments he makes are about cooking the wildlife they fought.
    • Apparently, even Matt draws the line at eating the Evil Worm.
    • In the fifth game, Matt will occasionally state after the winning the battle that they're not being hungry today. Even if their opponents were a group of Cosmic Monoliths, stated to be composed of anti-matter.
  • Big "NO!": Matt's initial reaction to the block puzzle in 4's Battle Mountain.
    Matt: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!1 GODCATDAMMIT! WHY?!? I'D RATHER DIE THAN DO THIS CRUD!
  • Bleached Underpants: Downplayed. Epic Battle Fantasy 5 features a "NSFW" toggle, which will remove elements like Lance's Nazi/SS logos, Natz' Stripperiffic outfits and infamous Gainaxing, and the bears' new Dung Fu attacks, among other things. Enemies' death animations are also more cartoonish, disappearing in a puff of smoke rather than the blood effect of the previous games. This is to widen the game's appeal without censoring it completely, something Matt is quite averse to doing.
  • Bloodier and Gorier: Played to some extent in the second game, which has a "blood" option.
  • Bloody Murder: The Sandworm enemy, when at low health, pukes toxic blood every turn until killed.
  • Bloodsucking Bats: From the fourth game, "Blood Bats", whose description in the bestiary starts with: "A bloodsucking enemy".
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: The third game's party consists of Matt, Lance, and Natz respectively.
  • Block Puzzle: Matt hates these. Naturally, the fourth and fifth games have quite a few.
  • Bonus Boss:
    • There are four in Bullet Heaven, unlocked by getting high ranks on many maps. They are just the normal bosses, but harder.
    • In 3, there are 5 "hidden rooms", one in each world except Space, blocked off by NPCs who refuse to let you through unless you have collected enough medals. These rooms contains lots of treasure chests, as well as invisible enemies that guard the chests and normally come much later in the game. When faced at the corresponding points in the game, they can easily cause a Total Party Kill in just a few turns. The kicker? Inside the volcano hidden room, you'll face off against: 2 waves of Evil Worms & Evil Tails, normally summoned by Final Boss Akron, Level 50 bushes, on a game where Level 30 is the default level Cap, and where it takes New Game+ and astronomical amounts of EXP to reach that kind of level, and finally notorious bosses in Mook clothes Viking, Ancient, and even ''Cosmic'' Monoliths, all at Level 40.
    • The Glitch in 4. To a lesser extent, the Beholder was upgraded to this; having a high amount of health, being more of a Flunky Boss, and even having the boss fight theme playing when you fight him.
    • The Steam version added beefed-up alternate versions of the normal bosses, the Zombie Hydra, undead versions of the party, and a boss-level Cosmic Monolith... not that it needed much more power to be considered boss-level.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 has nine, with each one being a tougher Palette Swap of an existing boss. They're exclusive to the Steam release and the expansion pack. Note that there's ten bosses in the normal game; only the first nine are given bonus counterparts because Akron is best left as a unique boss.
  • Booze-Based Buff:
    • In the third game onwards, beer increases your physical attack stat temporarily.
    • There is an enemy in the fourth game based off of Tanuki, but more realistic. They have a gourd of booze around their necks that they can drink for health and a strength boost.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • In 4, Heal More is explicitly referred to as the best spell in the game, and with good reason. It's a simple multi-target healing spell. You'll be using it a lot.
    • The Protect and Barrier abilities. You will be casting these constantly in tougher battles, because many strong enemies and virtually all bosses can kill party members in one turn on Epic if you don't.
    • In 4 again, the Alchemist's Bow and Chainsaw Sword, for Anna and Matt, respectively, are useful for trash mobs. The Alchemist’s Bow has a chance of inflicting every single status in the game, even instant death, on hit, so focusing her rain of arrows on trash mobs, or possibly even bosses if you don't have their elemental weakness or feel like gambling on better statuses like stun or seal showing up (which bosses are often only resistant rather than immune to), can be pretty helpful. The Chainsaw Sword has a much higher chance of instant death, and only instant death, making it useful in dealing with trash mobs, since it can mop up very, very quickly if you get lucky, but bosses are always immune to instant death.
  • Boss Arena Recovery: In Adventure Story, most bosses summon mooks which drop mana and health recovery bubbles to keep you supplied during the fight in a Cave Story-ish manner.
  • Boss Banter:
    • In EBF3, the final boss reveals his origins (or what he can remember of them, anyways) and contemplates the purpose of his existence while pummeling the living daylights out of you.
    • In EBF4, the final boss, or rather, each of her halves, elaborates on the banter of EBF3's final boss.
    • Every boss in EBF5, even in case where the boss can't speak and the banter consists instead of weird sounds.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • In the third game, the Monolith enemies. They are immune to all but two or three elements each, have loads of health, and alternate between moderately effective attacks and whole-party-hitting lasers powerful enough to one-hit-kill which inflict status effects. And they buff each other. Oh, and they always use the laser on their first turn, and unless you manage to stun one somehow they'll continue to all fire them on the same turn for the whole battle.
    • In the fourth game, Monoliths are somewhat reduced in power. They are still strong, but a simple Syphon (Silence) skill can completely wreck them, since all their attacks are spells. Their best attacks now require them to use a turn to charge, which makes it easier for the player to defend. A new enemy type, Dragons, takes their place as the new Boss in Mook Clothing, and are threatening for generally the same reasons that Monoliths were in the third game. There are also the Defender robots found in the factory — yes, the same Defender that was a boss in the first game — which have lots of health and deal lots of damage.
    • Fourth game also contains a redux of penultimate boss from previous installment that appears as a regular encounter - you have to fight Black, Gold and Red Dragon at once that have similar abilities that Pyrohydra had. Thankfully they are weaker and don't get buffs when you kill other dragons, though they are more than able to buff themselves up.
    • Fifth game has an upgrade to Defenders as well as the Dragons. There is also Chibi Knight fights, which give zero indication on the overworld map that they are any different.
  • Boss Rush:
    • There's one in Adventure Story, along with a "Foe Rush" which has rooms of the regular enemies from each level. Interestingly, in the boss rush the arenas have been upgraded to make the fights much harder.
    • Battle Mountain in the Steam version of EBF4 has four of these. #1 has you fighting the minibosses, #2 has you rushing the main game bosses, #3 is a series of the upgraded versions of those bosses, and #4 is against the dark versions of your party. Like the above example, this game also has a 38-wave Foe Rush.
    • The Steam version of EBF5 features the 33 waves of every enemy in the game, including some Bonus Dungeon only enemies, the miniboss Rush featuring Chibi Knight and the Hydras, Boss Rush and Bonus Boss Rush. No Dark Players rush this time.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Many instances in the third and fourth games.
    • In the first secret area of the third game, Lance speculates that the author was too lazy to add a background.
    • In the second game, when Natz does her Limit Break and thus gets a jiggly close-up, she then has a chance to comment "That's enough Fanservice for now."
    • Upon encountering jellyfish enemies for the first time:
    Natz: "Why are the jellyfish flying? Would it be harder just to draw some water underneath?"
    • In the fourth game, while Natalie objects to killing a woolly mammoth in Winterfall, she's okay with it in Battle Mountain, since that's a bonus area and it doesn't matter what the party does there.
    • In the fifth game the Final Boss is aware of your existence, talks to you and when is defeated, he says that he will find a way to materialize in the real world. And the player characters also talk to you.
  • Boss Warning Siren: A visual version in Bullet Heaven 2: "WARNING: DANGER! BOSS INCOMING!"
  • Breather Waves: invoked In certain mandatory multi-wave encounters containing mini-bosses, some waves will consist of a small number of weak enemies, placed specifically to give the player an opportunity to revive and heal. The Final Boss of 4 has three out of seven waves like this, and you're going to need them.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: EBF5 has a last room in Grand Gallery that needs all medals to be accessed. The reward? A few items that boost the stats, which is completely useless at that point of the game, considering you have to beat the Boss Rush of Bonus Bosses on Epic difficulty. To be fair, the guards blocking the path will warn you about this should you talk to them beforehand.
  • Breath Weapon: Many enemies. Akron has no arms to use for his casting poses, therefore alternative ways to cast his spells are necessary. His first form has an electric breath and a dark breath, his second form has a humongous mouth and as such has an energy sword "breath", a dark beam breath, a huge death ball breath... His Evil Worm has a bubble breath, a dark breath, and a poison breath. Same goes for the Sandworm. The Hydra / Dragon heads also like their breath weapons...
  • Breakout Mook Character: In the first game Nolegs was simply an early miniboss amongst many enemy cats, only to be an ally, and slaughterer of his own kind, in the second.
  • Broken Bridge: The fourth game contains numerous obstacles that are impassable until you get a certain item. These include literal broken bridges that require you to obtain a "ladder" item in order to bridge the gaps. Lance gets annoyed at all the backtracking they have to do because of this, while Matt is annoyed at how stupid some of the obstacles are.
  • Brutal Bonus Level:
    • Battle Mountain in the Steam version of the fourth game, featuring beefed up versions of the main bosses, new bosses more powerful than those in the main game, and regular enemy encounters with at least 6 waves of enemies each, with each wave getting progressively harder. Not to mention all enemy encounters there scale to your level, so grinding won't make it any easier.
    • EBF5 has five bonus dungeons with beefed up versions of regular bosses, one special boss and the level scaling as well.
  • Bullet Hell:
  • Butter Face: In the fourth game, when Lance meets Dark Natalie, he says:
    (Woah! Evil Natalie is even hotter than the real one! Well, maybe if you put a bag over her head...)
  • Cameo: Lots and lots, including several bosses in the first game, many of the summons, and a lot of the NPCs in the third game. Cameos are generally from anime, particularly Pokémon.
    • A more traditional example in EBF 5: Chibi Knight appears as a reoccurring miniboss throughout the game.
  • Canon Discontinuity: The second game makes no mention of the first game's final boss outside of his suicide explosion, and the heroes' deaths at the hands of the explosion was erased entirely. His grave appears in the fourth, though.
  • Captain Obvious:
    • In the third game.
      Protip-Hit the enemies 'til they die!
    • In the fourth game's Battle Mountain, Matt will comment on unhealthiness of drinking the purple water. Natalie's unspoken reaction gives off this vibe.
    • In Bullet Heaven 2, the description for the "Imperishable" badge:
      Beat any boss without getting hit at all. The best way to do this is to not get hit.
  • Cat Smile:
    • Matt and Natalie use this a lot.
    • Slimes tend to have this as a constant expression. Except when attacked.
    • Naturally, most cats have these also.
  • Call-Back:
    • The Defender, the second boss in Epic Battle Fantasy 1, is a recurring miniboss in Epic Battle Fantasy 4. Elemental variants of it also turn up as minibosses in the fifth game.
    • In the fourth game, Sarah reappears in Greenwood Village, north of Anna's house, and references her appearance in the third game, where her boyfriend was too low level to hit archery targets:
      I finally dumped my loser boyfriend btw! After training for two years, he still couldn't defeat a slime!
    • In the fourth game there's a girl in Greenwood Village with a slime on her head who enthusiastically tells Anna how good slimes feel when they move around on her. In the fifth game Anna tells Matt about a girl from Greenwood Village with a weird slime fetish.
    • In the fifth game when you see a Cosmic Monolith in Lance's fortress the nearby boombox plays the music from the hidden boss battle with it in the fourth game.
  • Censor Box:
    • Used during the beholder's "secret move". Also on naked NPCs.
    • If the player characters are to be believed, the beholder's "secret move" is exactly what you'd expect.
    Natz: Eww. I hope I don't get pregnant from this.
    • It shows up again in Epic Battle Fantasy 4.
    Natz: Eww. I hope I don't get pregnant from this again.
  • Chainmail Bikini: The Breastplate outfit for females in 4 at least covers up the ladies from the waist down all right, but still rather emphasizes "breast" over "plate".
  • Chain of Deals:
    • In 3, Jim takes 3 Rainbow Gems for a Charcoal, which looks like a black Ruby, and can't be distinguished on the quest record screen as rewards are in black and white. Yui wanted 2 Jaw Bones and a Charcoal, and gives the Staff called Sentinel.
    • In 4, with some NPCs in Goldenbrick Resort, there's a chain of quests involving things that look like important objects, but really aren't. You start the game with Old Boots, give it to Jan for a shovel, get a pair of spiked boots for it, and finally you get a map to the ancient ruins in the jungle.
    • In 5, there is in Redpine Town, near the entrance to the last location of the game, a ex-member of Lance's army. Should you finish the quest, he'll blow up a house there, and a saddened owner will start another quest that requires 7 Star Balls that grant any wish so he can get his house back. Each of them is given separately from another quest. And then the NPC wishes a ton of treasure instead. The party is not amused, to put it mildly.
  • Changing Clothes Is a Free Action: Averted.
    • Matt can instantaneously switch swords, but doing so eats up a turn.
    • The third, fourth and fifth game follows suit for all characters, though multiple pieces of equipment can be changed at once.
  • Character Development: The third game. (Since Matt and Natz had little to no character in the first two games.). Everyone in fifth, due to the series being soft reset.
  • Charged Attack: Certain enemies (mainly bosses) in all four games have at least one of these. Many of them are so ridiculously strong that they're practically a One-Hit Kill unless you use your Defend Command. Specifically:
    • The first game has the Mecha's Beam Cannon and Goku's Spirit Bomb. Definitely defend against the latter because Goku uses a physical attack immediately after Spirit Bomb lands!
    • The second game gives Lance's Valkyrie tank a nuke attack that takes as many as five turns to launch on Normal, but only two on Epic. When the time's up, the nuke deals massive fire damage to the party. Oh, on Hard and Epic, the Valkyrie can launch two nukes at once!
    • In 3:
      • The Protector has two mega-beam attacks: a thunder-elemental one that can stun your party, and a bomb elemental one that dispels your party before dealing damage!
      • Akron has a black hole-like attack that deals massive multi-hit dark damage with a chance of instant death!
    • In 4:
      • Laser Turrets have a powerful laser blast that can One-Hit Kill a player on harder difficulties.
      • Stunflowers have an attack where they charge for one turn, then use that energy to make an electric beam attack, attacking the whole active party.
      • Monolith enemies tend to always have a charged attack. The Sky Monoliths are unique in that they also heal and buff themselves while charging, while the other ones do nothing else but charge.
      • Lance's Hyper Beam skill in EBF4 and 5, as it makes Lance do nothing else but gain the Charge status effect on the initial use, then perform the actual attack if used again while he has Charge. The actual attack is a very powerful AoE energy beam whose element and status effects depending on Lance's current gun. On top of this, some guns in the fourth and fifth games give Lance the charge status at random!
    • In 5:
      • Monoliths still keep them, though now during charge they may also attack, especially on higher difficulties.
      • Lance's Hyper Beam stays this way, and using Ion Cannon gives a free charge, so whatever lived through the Ion Cannon can be finished off by Hyper Beam.
      • God, a NoLegs' doppelganger has two-round limit-break where first round he only charges a massive energy ball (despite having two turns normally) that flies to the sky. Round later, it lands on top of your party, dealing massive damage.
      • Devourer has a charged attack that splits planet in half before they reconnect, and it is used at you on point-blank range. You'd better defend before, otherwise is a front-party-wide One-Hit Kill.
    • Both Bullet Heaven games:
      • There's a charging system when it comes to weapons; the longer you take to fire either your main or sub-weapon, the more energy it will build up. Main weapons will gain attributes like piercing or splitting when charged, while sub-weapons usually just increase the time you can keep the sub-weapon active, or how many uses it has.
  • Chew Toy: NoLegs was originally a doodle by Roszak that he would torture over and over again. He even made an entire game about it, The Kitten Game. It can be played here.
  • Chest Monster: Be very wary of obvious, unguarded chests left out in the open in EBF 5, as they may lead you into surprise battles instead of giving treasure! If you stand close enough to such a trap for long enough, you can see the chest jump every so often.
  • Climax Boss: Both the Valkyrie Tank (particularly on Epic mode), and Akron. On any difficulty. If only for the Awesome Music and/or his speeches, constantly ascending in awesomeness. The fourth game gives us Godcat.
  • Cooldown: In the fifth game, there is no more Mana Points. Instead, stronger abilities are restricted by giving them a cooldown, in number of turns, until it can be used again. Some food can be used to have players' cooldowns be reduced, and making use of the Haste effect (allowing those with it to take an immediate additional action) does not count toward cooldowns - they only pass by after an entire side's turn. Some enemies can inflict a status called Disable, which immediately places character's cooldown skills (and sometimes skills without cooldowns) into, well, cooldown.
  • Combat Exclusive Healing: In the third game onward, healing spells can only be used in battle. However, you can walk around to heal HP and MP in EBF3, or even wait around in 4 and 5. If that takes too long, you can use healing items, find the Trauma Inn (third game) or slime bunnies (fourth and fifth game).
  • Comeback Mechanic: Bullet Heaven 2 slows the game down if you reach 1 heart of health, allowing you to a chance to finish the next wave(s) undamaged and heal up. Averted if you enable the "One Heart" handicap, since that would otherwise turn into a bullet-slowing cheat.
  • Commonplace Rare: The rarest type of healing item, which fully restores your party? Pizza. Other kinds of healing and stat foods are equally expensive. In the fourth game, there is exactly one stepladder in the entire game world. It is sought after by NPCs as if it were the Holy Grail.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In the first game, one of the bosses has a Charged Attack, which, when charging, triggers a warning saying "Brace for beam cannon". The final boss does this as well, his saying: "Brace for spirit bomb". The main concept is "Brace for X." The Cosmic Monolith's strongest attack involves it using a very low-damage ray to tear a rift in the ground. This prompts Lance to say "Oh, Crap!, brace for... that."
    • Zombie Goku carries a scar from his previous battle with Matt in Brawl Royale (although the scar is much smaller than you would expect for a guy who got perfectly bisected).
    • The final outfit that can be found for Lance is his German officer uniform from his appearance in EBF2, minus the swastikas.
    • Numerous references are made to earlier games in Bullet Heaven 2, ranging from clear ones like Akron (which turn out to be relevant at the very end of the game) to more obscure ones like EBF3's beach scene.
  • Continuity Reboot: Matt mentions here that Epic Battle Fantasy 5 is going to be this, where the characters meet up for the first time and have homes. There's some sense to it; how can the heroes gaining the respect of their very god be topped? Simple: obliterate a horror from beyond the veil that is tampering with their reality from behind the scenes!
  • Convection Schmonvection: Toned down more and more as the series progresses
    • EBF3: Our heroes traverse the volcanic area at the end of the game walking on rusty metal bridges suspended over molten rock and/or boiling lava, without any ill effects.
    • EBF4: You can still stand on metal walkways suspended over lava without suffering any ill effects, however to walk on lava you need special boots, and even then you'll take damage
    • EBF5: Walking on metal walkways over lava is still okay, but actually fighting there is usually accompanied by some unpleasant weather condition related to lava such as hot ash that may cause burning. Walking on lava is not possible anymore at all, instead there are paths of basalt that you can walk on with the right boots, but you'll still take damage. Standing next to lava still does nothing though.
  • Cool Sword: Loads of them appear in the series that define this. Naturally, it's Matt's Weapon of Choice.
  • Counter Attack:
    • The second game gives Matt and Natalie skill bonuses that grant them the ability to counter certain attacks with select skills; Matt counters physical attacks with his standard sword slash, while Natalie counters magic attacks with her Lucky Star skill. Both of these counters can be upgraded to trigger more often, too!
    • The third game onward makes it so that various weapons have a chance of making their wielders counter with specific skills when by any attack. The third and fifth games grant such abilities only when the weapons are high enough in level, but the fourth makes countering possible with level 1 weapons (though the chance is increased with higher levels)!
  • Covert Pervert: Lance. Well, he's trying to, anyway.
    Matt: ...And I think Natalie would hate you less if you stopped staring at her non-stop.
    Lance: That's not a fair criticism! I'm very subtle about it. I've got hidden cameras on my clothes, so that I don't even have to look in her direction.
    Matt: That's what I mean...
  • Creator Cameo: The angelic Support Party Member in the video game Matt is playing at the start of 5 is how Phyrrna, the composer who wrote the game's music, is depicted on cover art.
  • Creepy Cool Crosses: They appear a lot in the series, mainly in White Magic spells. However, the fourth game has them as decorative "flair".
  • Creepy Doll: Voodoo Dolls from EBF5. Damaging it damages the counterpart in your party even if (s)he is in backup.
  • Cross-Popping Veins: What the icon for the Berserk status effect looks like.
  • Curse Cut Short: Lance seems to like these.
  • Cute 'em Up: The Bullet Heaven spinoff pretty much defines this.
  • Cute Kitten: Everywhere.
    • NoLegs.
    • The (also legless) cats you fight.
    • Meow Meow is the only cat with legs (but apparently only in battle).
    • They even find their way onto all four of the Bullet Heaven bosses, as well as a few in the sequel.
      • Godcat (the 4th of the EBF 3.3 bosses) is coming back for EBF4. And is once again the Final Boss, being revealed to have literally created the world.
  • Cute Little Fangs: Natalie has these when she uses her Kyun Limit Break. This no longer applies in 5, where it is renamed 7th Heaven.
  • Cycle of Hurting: A natural consequence of a party member dying, since unless they have Auto-Revive they lose all their buffs. This often results in turns spent reviving them and reactivating those buffs. Against bosses, this gives them plenty of time to kill another party member and start the whole process all over again. Two Bonus Boss fights in 5 emphasize learning how to deal with this, since Dark Priestess Natalia disables all healing spells ensuring a lot of deaths and God gives a large stacking buff to all living party members every round, which becomes necessary to survive later-phase attacks.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: The characters lampshade this frequently in the third game, often showing no concern when they or their teammates die. However, players who are down when a battle ends do not gain experience.
    Natalie: Meatshield down!
  • Defeat Equals Explosion:
    • The first 3 games' final bosses explode when killed (well, only the top half of the third one explodes, the rest seems to fade away, see for yourself). Justified in the second game's final boss, as it is the tank (no, not the pilot). Averted with Godcat, the fourth game's final boss, who simply flies away. Her Creator and Destroyer aspects that you DO destroy still explode, however.
    • It is also not uncommon for mechanical enemies to explode on defeat, either.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 has big bombs and spike balls, which both explode when destroyed, but the former can also damage enemies!
    • Every Bullet Heaven boss explodes upon defeat; in the second game, they release a cloud of bullets all over the screen when this happens. Fortunately, these bullets can't harm you, as they are just for show.
  • Defeat Means Friendship:
    • Defeat also means less Swastikas and reduced desire to conquer the world, in the case of Lance.
    • Summons in the fourth game are bosses you defeated in both the third and fourth game. Natz lampshades the trope when she mentions how uncomfortable she is having allies that switch sides so easily.
    • All the party members (minus Matt) are recruited into the party after a boss fight in 5.
  • Degraded Boss:
    • The first boss of EBF1 is NoLegs riding a Giant Slime; Giant Slimes would later appear in EBF3 beyond as stronger counterparts to existing slimes. Similarly, the first mini-boss of EBF2, the Kitten Fort, got degraded to a tough enemy with several variants in later games.
    • The Beholder, Zombie Hydra, and Sandworm are back in the third game as enemies. Fortunately, they have far less hit points, the Hydra can no longer revive each head, and the Sandworm isn't assisted by its tail. They all get re-upgraded to serve as bonus bosses in the fourth game, though the Zombie Hydra got downgraded once again (complete with variants) as a Wyrm in the fifth game.
    • In a rare case of this happening to parts of a boss, there's the three Turrets in EBF4. Each is based on a secondary weapon of the Valkyrie Tank from EBF2.
    • The Defender from the first game returns as a mini-boss in EBF4 and EBF5 (gaining variants in the latter), and it's still pretty darned powerful. The Pyrohydra and Giant Squid bosses from EBF3 also get downgraded into the Dragon and Squid species, respectively.
    • After being a boss in two games, the Mammoth becomes a standard enemy in EBF5, alongside new variants.
    • The Cosmic Monolith goes from being a Boss in Mook Clothing in 3 and a Bonus Boss in 4 to a relatively ordinary late-game enemy in 5.
  • Description Cut: Anna first meets Matt with a huge sack full of loot. He internally reasons he can't drop it, so he'll try to run for it and get hit a bit if he has to. Then he's face down in the dirt full of arrows admitting that didn't go so well.
  • Developers' Foresight: Using a Limit Break in EBF5 that shows Earth in its animation after the Devourer's deleted the world will instead show the animation with Earth replaced with a black circle with a red outline and the numbers 404 in red.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Our heroes have done this all the time.
    • In the third, they destroy an ancient Eldritch Abomination.
    • Up to Eleven in the fourth, wherein they beat up the Creator and Destroyer aspects of Godcat. At once. Justified because she is not using her full strength, is still implied by the ending cutscene to be in better shape than our heroes rather than right out beaten, and ends up leaving once they prove their worth to her.
    • Kicked into Serial Escalation in the fifth, where they destroy an eldritch horror from beyond the veil that tampers with reality itself. Note that both halves of Godcat are reduced to Limit Breaks explicitly because of it.
  • Die, Chair! Die!: The fourth game has key items that let you destroy trees and rocks. Some of them must be cleared to progress the main story, and you get an achievement for the first use of each, but many — even nonessential ones — yield equipment crafting items (of logical type, such as Soft Wood from certain trees), and then there are the ones that block passages leading to shortcuts or treasure chests. All of this makes it generally worthwhile to take out every tree and rock that you can, once you are able to.
  • Difficulty by Acceleration: Bullet Heaven 2's survival mode has enemy bullets gain 5% speed each wave, as pointed out by the characters. Enemy health also increases with each wave.
  • Diminishing Returns for Balance: The second game makes you pick out stat upgrades and skill bonuses with each area you clear. The stat bonuses start out at +10 points per stat, and the number diminishes each time you upgrade the same stat on either player.
  • Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: Not heeding this advice kicked off the third game.
  • Don't Touch It, You Idiot!: Yeah! Poke the chained demon lord! Natalie states that she warned the other two not to touch it, but, like always, she was soundly ignored.
  • Downer Ending:
    • The first game, in which Zombie Goku's death explosion not only nearly kills the heroes, but also severely devastates the world. The second game has you dealing with the fallout.
    • Nearly occurs in the second game when Matt and Natz are graphically poisoned to death due to eating the sand worm they just killed. Luckily for them, an aptly named angel comes along to save the day.
  • Driven to Suicide: A couple of examples in the fifth game:
    • When you get Laurelin down to very low health, you can apparently hear the sounds of the cats inside committing seppuku en masse.
    • Quest NPC Albrecht, due to the fall of Lance's empire and the destruction caused by the meteor strike. His quest has you gather explosive materials, and when you walk off screen after handing them over, he blows himself up with them. Clearing the quest earns you a Bomb skill.
  • Dual Boss:
    • The Zombie Hydra in EBF2. Both heads have a One-Hit Kill attack (most annoying and lethally accurate on Epic), and can revive each other if not both defeated on the same turn.
    • Godcat plays it straight first, with Creator Godcat and Destroyer Godcat, then both of their One-Winged Angel forms separate. After beating both individually, they attack you together, but they aren't weakened at all and still manage to remain a Flunky Boss on top of that!
    • The Dark Players boss rush does this twice in one battle, meaning 2 Dark Players per wave! Oh, and they can summon their normal helpers when their partners go down. Have fun!
    • Near the end of the bonus content in EBF4, you fight "Dark" versions of each party member. After fighting each of them individually, there's a rematch where you fight both of the physically-oriented ones at once and both of the magic-oriented ones at once.
    • The main story in 5 has Lance and Neon Valkyrie. The bonus content has Sol and Skadi, with the twist that which one you choose to start the fight with affects the weather you have to deal with.
  • Dummied Out: In 4:
    • Accidentally via a bug; defeating the Praetorian MKII was supposed to give the Praetorian summon a 20% chance to summon the MKII version instead, to deal way more damage. However, a mistake in the event flag led to the alternate summon being inaccessible.
    • The Spiked Boots' Flavor Text: "These were going to do something at one point, but now they do nothing."
  • Dung Fu: In EBF5, bears can crap on a player as an attack, ending with a fart. The players are suitably grossed out to being subject to this - even Anna is not pleased to be on the bad end of this attack.
  • Early Installment Weirdness:
    • Instead of being a traditional RPG adventure, the first two games were "arena"-style, where you fight continuous waves of enemies and bosses. There's no leveling (characters start with max stats), no equipment other than Matt's swords, and a lot less spells (due to the different formula, there was no need for multi-tiered spells). The first game was even simpler, lacking Limit Breaks, an Enemy Scan, and a save feature.
    • While the series is known for being Reference Overdosed, EBF1 took it to another level by directly using characters and music from other works. Starting from the sequel, which was significantly more professional, these characters either disappeared entirely or had their roles replaced (for example, NoLegs replaced Mog as the random healing item spell). Possibly as a result of this, the first game doesn't have much connection to the rest plot-wise, with the only relevant event from it being Zombie Goku's death explosion, which kicks off EBF2's plot (Zombie Goku himself goes unmentioned).
    • Summon Magic was in a weird situation for the earlier games. In the first two games, it was basically another form of regular magic for Natz. In the third, it's scrapped entirely and the summons are turned into other types of skills. EBF4 reintroduced the system so that everyone could use it, as well as changing its cost to Summon Points.
    • Going further back, Natalie's first appearance had her using shuriken as a weapon instead of magic, and Matt's appearance in Brawl Royale had him use a gun at one point, something he never does afterwards.
  • Easier Than Easy: The new "Zero" difficulty in EBF5, intended for super casual players.
  • Easy Levels, Hard Bosses: Especially in the fourth and fifth, where there are achievements for beating bosses in Epic but no repercussions for fighting all other battles on Easy.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery:
    • An NPC telling you about difficulty levels in 4 says you should be ashamed for playing it on the easiest difficulty.
    • Zero mode, as mentioned above. Its name alone is likely this.
  • Edible Collectible: The third game's first minigame has NoLegs eat dozens of food items for points.
  • Elemental Powers: Ten in the main series. Nine of them are standard — Fire, Thunder, Ice, Earth, Poison, Dark, Holy, Water, and Wind. The tenth is Bomb, which specifically refers to explosive force, and works best on enemies made of solid stone or metal.
  • Electric Jellyfish
  • Eldritch Abomination: Akron, the demon. After being awakened, he makes a black hole in space and causes a volcano to erupt, along with warping space and sending the protagonists to the town.
    • The Glitch. Unknowable name, unknowable form, resistant to all elements, spawns smaller versions of itself, kills players with a touch that does 0 damage. And the party's reaction to seeing it is a dumbfounded "huh?"
    • The Cosmic Monolith; a gigantic, pitch black rectangle from space that fires lasers capable of ripping holes in space-time and whose signature attack is named Doomsday. Worse yet, upon death, the inside of the monolith resembles Dark Matter. In the fourth game, summoning it even causes thousands of the things to appear all over the globe in a way that implies an invasion of the things. Good thing one of them's on your side. In 5, as if all its nasty power isn't bad enough, it has a single physical attack if Syphoned, and it hurts like hell!
    • The Devourer. Let's just say its powers include soft-rebooting the entire series and leave it at that.
  • Embarrassing Superpower: Natalie considers her "Kyun!" Limit Break embarrassing but useful (as it clears away all status problems, buffs the party and debuffs the enemy).
  • Empty Levels: Due to the way stat growth formulas work, higher levels can actually hurt the player if they're in a Level Scaling area, since enemies benefit more from level gains than player characters.
  • Endless Game: The aptly-named Endless Battle in EBF4. The waves are randomly generated, every 5th wave is tougher, then the enemies level up. By wave 30 or so, all enemies are 6 levels higher than you, no matter your team's level! Also, Hard difficulty is forced for this mode!
    • This carries over to the EBF5 combat demo, only you have an options menu for levels, equipment, difficulty, etc.
      • In fact, this goes as far back as the battle demo for EBF3, only way simplified, with 3 repeating waves of slimes that level up with each repeat.
    • Bullet Heaven has a single survival level available from the beginning, which gives you maxed health and bombs, and collecting money gradually powers you up. Enemies are somewhat random, but later waves have tougher foes, until you come across foes from the final zone.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 has 11 survival levels, also with randomly generated waves. Here, enemies get slightly faster and tankier each round, and their bullets are similarly increased in speed. While 5% or so each round may not seem like much, it still adds up quickly, and if you want 3 stars in these levels, you need to collect 15 diamonds! Oh, you also have one each of health and bombs, and cheats (and handicaps) are disabled like Bullet Heaven above!
  • Enemy Scan: In the second and fourth games, you can summon a Scanbot, and in the third, Lance has a Scan skill. Each game has medals for scanning enough enemies and stores enemy info in a bestiary you can refer back to. In the fifth game everyone has the Scan ability.
  • Essence Drop: In Adventure Story, enemies drop hearts and green bubbles, which restore your health and mana respectively.
  • Everything's Even Worse with Sharks: Sharks appear in Bullet Heaven as enemies.
  • Everything Fades: All dead enemies do, at least. The last Wooly Mammoth, on account of how the party don't actually kill it after defeating it, doesn't.
  • Evolving Attack: In EBF3 and 4 leveling up an attack merely boosted its strength or status effect, but in 5 some attacks change completely. For example, Natalie starts only with 'Ice' as single ice attack, but on level 4 it becomes Iceshard and later Icestorm (which were separate skills in previous games).
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Epic Battle Fantasy. Some of the moves, as well: Heal, Revive, Screamer, etc.
  • Expy: Invoked during EBF5's development. Fans claimed that the Flame Sprite enemies in EBF4 looked like Flame Princess, so for EBF5 Matt turned the resemblance from coincidental to blatantly deliberate.
  • Exploited Immunity: Some enemy spells do damage to everyone on both sides of the field. In all cases, the caster absorbs the spell's element, often alongside its allies. These include:
    • A rain of hot ash that hits 3 times for fire damage in EBF3 and has a chance of inflicting Burn status in 4 and 5.
    • A hail spell that hits 3 times for ice damage. This skill is learnable in EBF4 as "Hailstorm".
    • Cloudburst hits everything once for water damage in 3, gives everyone "Wet" status in 4 and 5, and is learnable in 4 (and possibly 5).
    • In EBF3, Doomsday hits the entire field for massive dark damage, and can be used by cosmic monoliths. This means that not only can this really hurt, but these monoliths absorb darkness, making high dark resistance, Syphon, and/or fast damage a must, since cosmic monoliths cast this every 3 turns like the other two cast their beam attacks.
      • Thankfully, Doomsday no longer hits the enemy side in 4 onward (meaning the Cosmic Monolith can't heal itself this way), but it is still pretty nasty, to say the least.
    • A snow-themed ice spell replaces Hailstorm for the enemies in 4, doing ice damage to everyone with a chance of casting Freeze.
    • One interesting outcome of any of these spells being cast is when other enemies aren't immune or even resistant to such elements, resulting in them taking damage from their own allies. This is particularly noticeable in a certain "Monolith Trio" battle in 3, in which the Cosmic's Doomsday will do severe damage to its two allies. Even more so in 4 on Hard or Epic on a New Game+, in which certain snow/ice enemies can cast the snow-themed ice spell mentioned above, and One-Hit Kill non-resistant allies, even if you hardly feel it!
  • Extra-ore-dinary: Registeel is a summon in the first game, doing non-elemental damage.
  • Eye Beam: Akron's fire spell. Oddly, until he's severely damaged, his eyes are actually hidden under mummy bandages. How he manages to cast this fire beam without burning through them is anyone's guess.

     Tropes F-J 
  • Fake Difficulty:
    • The first two games become really hard if one party member dies, since you only have one left. Even worse, some enemies stun or freeze you... with a high chance of doing so. Meaning, you could have to sit out a turn with nobody else to help you getting attacked until you can fight again. And if there are multiple stun/freeze enemies, Godcat help you.
    • The second game's Hydra boss can be a particularly bad offender. The boss has two parts, both of which have an instakill move. It is entirely possible for both heads to use this move on their first turns, forcing the player to restart an already annoying chapter. Fortunately, the move isn't guaranteed to work every time, and Matt can obtain a skill which gives him a chance to survive any blow — including the aforementioned insta-kill move — with exactly one Hit Point left. (Cue Limit Break.) Natalie has one that randomly gives her auto-life. (Again, cue Limit Break.)
  • Feed It with Fire: If resistance to an element is above 100%, attacks of that element heal instead of doing damage, so poisoning some foes will merely cause them to regenerate health (some foes such as slimes start with this buff on epic difficulty). Also, some fire-absorbing foes in 4 start with Burn status, to the same effect.
    • In EBF4, if you have the right equipment, you can experience the same thing. There's even an achievement medal for doing it!
  • Final Boss, New Dimension:
    • Akron, the final boss of both EBF3 and BH2, is fought in a black hole in both appearances.
  • Final Boss Preview: In EBF4, you meet the Final Boss for the first time right as you are about to walk out of the Crystal Caverns; without warning, you are suddenly thrust into a surprise encounter against Godcat, just after a boss fight. There's a second such encounter in the middle of Lankyroot Jungle's lava cave. To win the battle, all you have to do is watch helplessly as she avoids nearly all of your attacks effortlessly and launches single-target spells powerful enough to empty your HP gauge several times over. After a few turns of toying with you, she'll depart and leave behind some mid-level enemies that you can actually fight.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: The fifth game, as our protagonists are in a Reboot and none of them have any prior history at all any more.
  • Fire/Ice/Lightning: Played straight with Natalie for all four games. Anna has an alternative Wind/Poison/Earth spell list.
  • Flipping Helpless: In the fourth game, when Mighty Oak is defeated, and therefore, tipped over, Anna says:
    And he's down! Don't worry, he's not hurt at all. He just can't get back up from that position.
  • Flipping the Bird:
    • Some attacks in 5 cause a stone fist to rise from the ground; this is one of the configurations it can take.
    • Matt and Lance do this when they're particularly angry, also in 5.
  • Flunky Boss: Every damn boss in the third game is this. Even the Pyrohydra, who at first seems to avert it by being a Wolfpack Boss instead, starts summoning minions when reduced to one head. The fourth game turns it into an advantage, since every enemy killed gives you Summon Points.
    • The fourth game does this with all of its bosses as well (except the Zombie Hydra as of the Battle Mountain update). The final battle with Godcat is not only this in waves 2 and 4, but pulls off both this and Dual Boss in wave 6.
  • Flying Seafood Special: The jellyfish of the third game are explicitly said to be flying. The fourth game adds robots that look like flying fish in the factory area.
  • Foreshadowing: Akron's being created by Godcat gets a fair bit of this in the third game. A statue of him is visible in the Kitten Ruins (only as a shadow, naturally), and several of his Boss Banter lines refer to Godcat.
  • Forest Ranger: Anna.
  • Frictionless Ice: Ice blocks in EBF4 and 5 never stop sliding until they hit an object. 5 has puzzles involving floors of ice that do this as well. There is a pair of spiked boots late into Frozen Valley that allows the party to walk normally on ice.
  • Friendship Moment: Despite how much Natz snarks at Matt, Matt comforts her when her entomophobia goes haywire during 4.4, by promising her he won't let any bugs touch her. Later, Matt and Lance start to lose hope against fighting Akron in the Void, during which she tells them that they can treat them like any other enemy and they'll be fine.
  • Friend to All Living Things:
    • Anna. She is seen caring for a baby Bush monster in her idle animations. She will not hesitate to defend herself against the more aggressive living things, though.
    • While Natz is shown to defend some forms of wildlife (if they're cute enough) like the mammoth, one of her responses against the Rafflesia boss is "Screw the rainforest!".
  • Gainaxing: Not only does Natalie happily jiggle here and there, clicking her boobs while she's standing still will make them bounce. The third game even upgraded to bounce away from the relative location you clicked on them. You get a medal for doing it enough.
    EBF3 Medal Description: Please don't leave 1,000 comments about this again.
    EBF4 Medal Description: Please don't leave 100,000 comments about this again. Seriously, you freaks.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: A few:
    • In the second game, if you kill the last zombie hydra with the Legend attack, the game might freeze and you will be unable to proceed to the next level.
    • As of December 2015, Chrome updates have introduced a number of bugs to the older Flash EBF games that can make them almost unplayable.
  • Game Over: The series plays around with this. Be prepared to see some form of it on Epic (Heavenly in Bullet Heaven 2) a lot in any of the games.
    • In the first game, it's Exactly What It Says on the Tin, as there's no way to save; no checkpoints, no Save Scumming, nothing. The pose Matt is in on the Game Over screen is likely to be shared by you if this happens near the end.
    • The second game gives you a tip for each area/boss depending on where you died, and the picture is of the heroes, all crying, with Clothing Damage and destroyed weapons.
    • The third game displays a random message, usually containing a Shout-Out. It also shows a giant mass of bones against a dark background with each of the heroes' default weapons visible. The music also changes to a short, sad theme, formerly accompanied by a vocal "FAIL!".
    • The fourth game has the same Game Over theme, but the background is completely dark. Same with the fifth.
    • The side games have some form of Death Throws, with both Bullet Heaven games saying "Level Failed" instead.
  • Gameplay Grading: Both Bullet Heaven games grade you based on your overall score.
    • BH1 grades you on an F to S scale, and your score is modified by enemies killed and hits taken. Four cheats exist, but they lower your score enough to drop your rank once for each one used.
      • The survival level keeps the "kills" factor, but grades you based on the farthest wave you reach in one run.
    • BH2 separates each stage into 10 main waves plus 3 bonus ones depending on your performance. Points are obtained based on kills (as above), fast time, bullets cleared, and money collected, but the most important high-score factor is the DIAMONDS from perfect waves! The criteria for a perfect wave are as follows:
      • All enemies killed,
      • No damage taken,
      • No bombs used, and
      • Must be at full health, or you just get a heart to Heal Thyself by following the above points.
    • BH2 also modifies the rank scale from its predecessor by allowing you to go up to 3 stars above the A rank, complete with a cool jingle for the star ranks!
      • As well as displaying stage ratings, completing all stages in one world displays a world rating based on your lowest stage score (example: if you have all 3-stars except for one star on one stage, your world rating will be one star. If you got all 3-star ratings, congratulations!).
    • Difficulty is another factor in scoring; raising the base difficulty multiplies your score, but it equally multiplies the score requirement for each rank. Handicaps, however, raise your score but not the rank requirements. This means that handicaps increase how quickly you rank up in a stage if you can handle the additional challenge. Conversely, cheats lower your score, but a negative multiplier only means that your score will stay at 0.
    • Diamonds (and hearts) also recharge both your weapons so you can beat the next wave faster, which is another reson to dodge well.
  • Gender-Restricted Ability: In the fourth game, some of the Special Skills, which can only be used by a single character, are restricted to either Matt and Lance, the males, or Natalie and Anna, the females:
    • Male Only:
      • Giga Drill
      • Power Metal
      • Death Metal
      • Ion Cannon
    • Female Only:
      • Revive
      • Gaia [X]: Gaia Seed, Gaia Bloom, and Gaia Blossom
      • Toxic
      • Absolute Zero
  • Gender-Restricted Gear: The third game onward has hats and armor that only the male characters (Matt and Lance of course, but later NoLegs as well) can wear, and likewise with Natalie and (fourth game onwards) Anna.
  • Ghost Pirate: In the fourth game, since undead pirates are part of the trope, the medal for defeating Dark Matt on Epic difficulty is:
    Defeat an undead pirate on Epic Difficulty.
  • Giant Mook:
    • In 4, some waves contain regular enemies that have larger sprites in addition to higher levels and stats. Of note is the giant kitten soldier in Battle Mountain's foe rush, who is 15 levels higher than the party's average level. The good news is that their elemental and status resistances are unchanged.
    • The giant enemies return in 5 for some waves. Foe Rush now has two giant enemies: a Dark Bush and a Slime Bunny. Both are also 15 levels higher than the party.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: Unless you've checked the art gallery (or have seen Roszak's other works), you will have no idea that Zombie Goku is the final boss of the first game.
    • While the game doesn't always make sense, it's frequently acknowledged or lampshaded when it happens, which makes the robot pumpkin boss in the jungle in EBF4 all the stranger since it's not even commented on despite being massively out of place.
  • Giving Up the Ghost: Happens whenever Matt, Natalie, and Lance die. Strangely averted for Anna.
  • Glad He's on Our Side: In EBF5, Matt remarks this of Anna after seeing her Limit Break for the first time, and of Lance the first time he uses Neon Valkyrie's Machine Guns after his Heel–Face Turn.
  • God and Satan Are Both Jerks: Not only did Godcat create Akron, she's actually less affable to the party than him. She can also fulfill this trope by herself due to having a light and a dark aspect, which represent creation and destruction respectively.
  • Go into the Light: In the fourth game, one of Matt's phrases, when he's revived, is:
    Oi! (I was just about to find out what that light at the end of the tunnel was...)
  • Gotta Catch Them All: The antagonists are doing this in the fourth game. You don't get any of them, and don't even get close to catching them until the last one.
  • Gratuitous Greek: The lower part of Akron regurgitates a giant, glowing red sword with Greek letters on it, which spell out Destroyer. Meaningful Name?
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Destroyer Godcat states in Epic Battle Fantasy 4 that Akron, the previous game's Big Bad Sealed Evil in a Can Final Boss, was her creation.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: If this is anything to go by.
  • The Grim Reaper: The most recurring One-Hit Kill attack in the series summons one to attack the target, with its lethality being counterbalanced by its relatively low accuracy... except on Epic. Until EBF4, it was exclusive to enemies, and even when it did become available to players, it's only as a rare summon from one specific weapon.
  • Guide Dang It!: Getting the medal for finding all treasures in each area in EBF3 can be very tedious, as some are ridiculously well hidden. This is averted in EBF4, where the achievement is reduced to finding a vast majority of the chests, but not every last one.
  • Hailfire Peaks:
    • The second game's Giga Golem stage background is a frozen tundra with a volcano visible in the distance.
    • Enemies in levels in the third game onward tend to be themed around a single type of elemental damage, weak to it early on, but enemies further in are resistant to it. The final level of EBF4 has holy and evil enemies fighting on the same side!
    • Environmentally, Glacier Valley in EBF3 is a straight example, as towards the end of it you come across a volcanic plain.
    • The first bonus dungeon in EBF5 is also a straight example: it's located inside the Ice Cave, but has pools of lava all over the place alongside the frozen sections. Matt naturally lampshades it the instant the party first steps inside.
  • Hair Decorations: Natalie and (from 4 onwards) Anna can be equipped with these, instead of the hats that the male characters can equip.
  • Hammer Space: Every character can just sort of raise themselves up in the air and flash, and suddenly they've got a different hat, shirt, and weapon on them. Lance seems to have a tank and helicopter slightly offscreen at all times.
  • Hand Wave: Matt's reaction to Natalie's complaint that she can't breathe during level 2-2 in ''Bullet Heaven 2.
    Matt: Don't worry! Thanks to the developer, we can breathe underwater for no reason! It's actually kind of cool!
  • Hard Mode Perks:
    • Higher difficulties fill all players' Limit Break bars faster, because of the increased damage. Be grateful for this! Even with the limit-bar damage multipliers decreasing with difficulty, the net result is still greater.
    • Higher difficulties means more HP for enemies, which means in 5, it'll be easier to get enemies to a lower HP percentage, making them easier to catch.
  • Harder Than Hard:
  • Healer Signs On Early: In the fourth game, the player starts off playing as Anna, who has a healing spell that she can use if it's unlocked.
  • Healing Spring: The places where Slime Bunnies are in EBF4, since they live in water, and are used to automatically restore everyone's HP and MP.
  • Health/Damage Asymmetry: As both player and enemy levels increase, the latter group tends to grow faster in HP, but not as fast in overall damage. Justified because the players tend to have way higher defensive stats than the enemies could even hope for by the endgame.
  • Heel–Face Turn:
    • This apparently happens each game. First, NoLegs joins your party in the second game, when in the first game he rides the first mini boss, and then the Beholder joins too (and then it's an enemy in 3 and 4 again, but after you defeat it in the latter game it's a helpful summon). Then, of course, Lance after you beat him in the second game. The woolly mammoth from the third game is a summon (and sometimes randomly triggered effect), dropping from the sky to flatten your enemies. Natalie is quite happy to see it's alive and well.
    • Lots of pets/summons in the fourth game can count as this, since most of them are enemies from either this game or previous ones. For instance, you can get a Red Dragon summon after beating a group of red dragons in the lava caves, and a Beholder summon after beating the Beholder miniboss. Once the Praetorian (the third boss) is defeated, Lance reprograms it to work for the party, and it also becomes a summon. The Guardian boss from the third game is also a powerful summon in the fourth... and so is the Cosmic Monolith.
    • After the party defeats Godcat, she realizes humans have grown strong enough to earn the planet she had originally created for cats, and leaves without fulfilling her promise of destruction. She also assists the party in the fifth game, with her Creator and Destroyer forms serving as NoLegs' Limit Breaks.
  • He Knows About Timed Hits:
  • Hit Points: Appears in all the main series games.
    • General: They're shown as a fraction above the Health Meters of the players, and also used to note how much damage was dealt to enemies.
    • Starting from the second game: It's possible to get a precise measurement of how many hit points an enemy has, by scanning them with a Scanbot or something.
  • Holiday Mode: During the festive period, enemies will occasionally drop Candy Canes. They can't be used for anything, but you can trade a bunch of them to an NPC in exchange for Santa outfits for your party members.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight:
    • In Epic Battle Fantasy 4, the player is not supposed to be able to defeat Godcat in her cat form; rather; they are merely supposed to survive her attacks for a set number of rounds. Someone on YouTube did use a hack to defeat Godcat, which promptly caused the game to crash.
    • In EBF5 Lance crashes Neon Valkyrie into your party and kidnaps Natalie. You can't do a thing about it, dealing thousands of damage to everyone. It's more like a cutscene than real fight. Strangely enough, when he uses the same attack during the actual boss battle it deals much less damage, albeit it still hurts quite a lot.
  • Horny Devils: In the fourth game, since a succubus is a horny devil, the medal for defeating Dark Natalie on Epic difficulty is:
    Defeat a busty succubus on Epic Difficulty.
  • Humans Are Flawed: Throughout the final battle of EBF4, Godcat rants at length about how humans "stole" the world from the cats and how they've brought nothing but pain and war to the world. Once the party defeats her, she quickly changes her tune.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: The third game replaces potions with various food items. This has the side effect of making pizza incredibly rare.
  • Hyperspace Arsenal:
    • This is a given thanks to the equipment system, as shown in the Hammer Space entry.
    • The Valkyrie Tank boss can endlessly summon turrets from within itself, even though the total volume of the turrets should exceed the tank itself.
  • Ice Breaker: The other way to get rid of the freezing effect besides healing is to get attacked while frozen, for bonus damage. Lampshaded by an NPC in the third game as you go into Glacier Valley that it's probably a bad idea to do that to allies, and it's better to heal them. Also lampshaded by Natz when she first uses Regen, remarking that it'll probably be a good way to get rid of freeze.
  • Idiot Hero: Everyone, but Matt in particular. For example, this exchange from Bullet Heaven 2:
    Natalie: Hold on, there's a demonic portal opening up ahead. Maybe—
    Matt: Finally! An exit! I'll take it!
    • One scene in EBF3 showing off the group:
Natz: Oh no, a puzzle, we're too stupid to figure this out.
Lance: I concur. Do you concur?
Matt: I concur.
  • Idle Animation: A frequent source of Shout Outs.
  • Inescapable Ambush:
    • All of the the third game's bonus areas, unlocked by earning many medals, have ambushes that trigger when you walk onto specific tiles on the map rather than interacting with enemies. Averted, however, in that you can flee them at any time and even access the chests that these encounters guard, no combat whatsoever.
    • Played straight in the fourth game, which has Godcat's separate forms and the Glitch appear as ambushes, triggered similarly to those in EBF3. However, these ambushes disable the "Flee" command, meaning that you really have to be prepared. Fortunately, Godcat's forms only get two attacks each whenever they appear, and in these cases summon crystals for you to take down. The Glitch will probably send you back to the auto-save the first time though.
  • Infinity +1 Element: Multiple examples:
    • Bomb in the third game. There are huge stretches of the game where almost every enemy is weak to it, and almost nothing actually resists it except a few fire enemies; most importantly, it is the weakness of every clay and golem enemy, who otherwise rarely match in the elements they aren't immune to, and all three monoliths, which each are immune to all but two or three types. Lance gets two bomb weapons and two bomb specials regardless of weapon, and they'd all be solid choices even without the element. In the hands of enemies it's nothing special, other than being hard to recognize. Unfortunately, in the fourth game, Bomb got much more balanced than before. Still not a bad element, as none of the monsters you usually encounter can absorb it.
    • Poison in the third game. It would stack multiple times, stacks would not disappear, most monsters can't dispel poison stacks, and at nine stacks even bosses would drop dead after a few rounds. The downside is that a good deal of monsters are immune (though most of them are weak to Bomb anyway). Poison was nerfed in the fourth game, with stacks dropping by 1 each round and damage scaling much less with the monster's max HP.
    • In the fourth game, lightning and ice are this due to the wet status effect. Hitting your foes with an attack that wets them (Geyser, aqua arrow, etc.) and then an ice attack can hit as hard as if you had used the element they're weak to as long as they're not resistant. And Godcat help them if they're weak to either.
    • In the fifth game poison becomes this again. This is mainly due to the introduction of The Virus status, which does the same thing as Poison, except it spreads and renews by itself, meaning you have to infect someone once and you don't have to bother with it again. To top it off, it stacks with Poison, so you can put maximum stacks of both on something and it drops quickly even with some resistance. The only disadvantage is the Virus can spread on you from the enemies, but usually the weapons inflicting the Virus also provide some resistance to Bio-aligned damage; specifically Lance's maxed-out Biohazard Blaster comes with the Virus as a status and whopping 150% resistance to Poison (while inflicting Poison on Lance, basically giving a weaker Healing Factor).
  • Infinity +1 Sword:
    • Equilibrium in EBF4. After beating all four boss rushes on Battle Mountain's summit, you get this non-elemental sword, which can syphon enemies with certain attacks, counters attacks with Legend, and randomly gives auto-life status.
    • Star Hammer for NoLegs in EBF5. It boosts his non-elemental skills, can randomly cast Falling Star between turns, halves damage from three main elements his attacks have 100% chance of dispelling buffs (critical for later bosses) and can follow up with Star Punch. The main reason is though that the weapon multiplies both his attack and magic by 2.3 and also raises both defenses by 20%. The only weapon with stronger attack bonuses reduces his HP so much it is barely usable.
  • Innocent Fanservice Girl: In EBF3, there's a naked girl in Rock Lake who gives you a quest. She doesn't seem to notice (or care) that she's stark-naked. There's also a naked man, but he doesn't exactly fit:
    Matt: Don't come any closer, gramps. You'll scar this girl for life.
    Natalie: Too late. D:
  • Instant Awesome: Just Add Mecha!: Robots and machines of various types are common enemies across all four games.
  • Instant Runes: They frequently pop up whenever a spell is cast. Matt, Natalie, and Lance also have unique ones representing them and cast them when defending.
  • Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: In EBF4, there are fours different types of key (copper, silver, gold, and coral) which follow this trope.
  • Interface Spoiler:
    • EBF1 gives you the option of spoiling the entire game by looking through the art gallery. EBF2 tries to fix this by locking the later parts of the gallery until you beat the game... but the fan art is included before that point, and a few pieces prominently feature Lance, the final boss.
    • EBF4's achievement screen gives away the names of the final boss and the bonus boss (and all the other bosses, for that matter), and the fact that you get an award for beating the bonus boss at any difficulty while the others require epic difficulty is a clear giveaway that the Bonus Boss is optional.
    • Averted with the Evil Versions of the main characters in Battle Mountain. The medals don't give away who they are, instead stating vague descriptions.
  • Interface Screw:
    • The Shroud status effect in EBF5 hides literally all information on screen on the character it's been applied to. Health, buffs, status, everything.
    • The glitched field effect in certain areas of the 5 does this to everyone on the field. Only HP is visible, and even that is an uncertainty. One area is so bad that it corrupts even the graphics for equipment and skills.
  • Invincibility Power-Up: Enemies in both Bullet Heaven games can drop a shield powerup that functions as a Deflector Shield and and Attack Reflector, though it doesn't protect against the generally far more avoidable Collision Damage,. The second game also has a (very expensive) cheat that makes you invincible but totally nulls your score!
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Lance's racism against cats is justified since most of them try to attack the player (even though they're pretty poor at it.) Also they are attempting to raise old gods to kill all humans.
  • Item Amplifier: Several armors in the third and fourth game can double the effects of HP and MP healing items, while others double the damage of thrown items.
  • Joke Item: In EBF5, one of NoLegs' weapons is the Buster Sword, "the strongest sword of them all!". According to the description. It's actually a much smaller replica made entirely out of "100% recycled cardboard" and duct tape. It's as useless as it sounds.
  • Just Friends: Natz and Matt. Natz is very surprised when Matt says they're "more than friends", only for her to be dejected when he says he means "we're a team." Matt views being part of a team as closer than friends, while Natz views the opposite, since Nolegs and Lance are also part of the team. Well, until after the fifth game, at least.

     Tropes K-O 
  • Kaizo Trap:
    • In Bullet Heaven, bullets don't clear after you pass waves or even levels, meaning it's entirely possible to die right after beating a boss! There's even an an achievement for dying with no enemies onscreen!
      • Made worse with slower computers in that the game can slow down during boss battles (which can be advantageous in the right amount), then speed back up once the boss stops shooting.
    • Bullet Heaven 2 averts this, thanks to the Anti-Frustration Features above, and in that bullets from the blasts released by defeated bosses are harmless due to being purely cosmetic. Even if you disable bullet clearing, lingering bullets do not cause you to lose if you beat wave 10 of any stage.
  • Karl Marx Hates Your Guts: Lampshaded in the fourth game, with a group of protesters who are fighting against the unfair economy of shopkeepers who buy things from players at 1/4th of the price and have a monopoly on goods.
  • Karma Houdini: Arguably, Lance. The guy tries to take over the world after it was left in bad shape from the first game, and in the scene before you fight him, it's hinted that he killed basically anything in his way. His comeuppance? He joins the party because he used to be the male lead's friend. note  However, seeing as you can play as him in the third game...
    • Godcat as well. She destroyed the cat civilization and took away the survivors' legs and arms. When the party defeats her, she just flies away and starts a new world. Justified because, well, there's not much you can do to The Maker.
    • Lance again in the fifth game. Not only does he plan to take advantage of a global catastrophe to unite the world under a fascist regime, as he does in EBF2, he also kidnaps several women (including Natalie) to act as "breeding stock" for said regime. Once again, his only punishment upon defeat is to join the party. This time it's justified, as they're only recruiting him for his knowledge of the monoliths and they don't particularly like or trust him (especially Natalie). It's also downplayed: aside from the party's own distrust, several NPCs are astonished to see Lance just casually walking around with you. Even Lance himself is surprised at how easy he got off.
  • King Mook: Giant slimes and the Beholder to the slimes and eyeballs.
  • Kill One, Others Get Stronger:
    • The Pyrohydra's remaining heads will receive massive buffs each time one head dies.
    • During the Dark Player boss rush, the boss pairs are unable to summon minions until their partner dies. Tip: kill Dark Lance first in the first half, since evil worms, evil tails, and undead bears tend to hurt less than a freaking defender!!
  • Kill Sat:
    • The Ion cannon.
    Lance: "Don't worry, it's solar powered. Minimal damage to the environment and radiation, but still lethal. I'm quite proud of it."
    • When the Praetorian uses the Ion cannon as its charged attack in the fourth game, Lance complains that the boss in question hacked it. Then he hacks the Praetorian after the party defeats it.
  • Kilroy Was Here: A gravestone in Graybone Cemetery reads "Nibblez wuz here" at the bottom, accompanied by a drawing of a meowing cat.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero:
    • In the third game, you can actually walk around in a world map. And thus, this trope is born. Lampshaded in Glacier Valley if you go to an igloo. Matt will wonder if the Vikings will mind if you take their stuff, Lance will say that you'll need to anyway if you want the treasure hunter medals, and Natalie will try to get them to stop stealing everything. Lampshaded yet again when you come across another unlocked tent in Volcano Peak, at which point Natalie agrees to steal things.
    Lance: "You've changed."
    • Lampshaded early on if you find the "secret" back area of the shops where you can loot the shopkeeper's treasure chests. Natz will question if it's stealing, and Matt will only reply "Just take it and run!"
    • In the fourth game, after saving the world several times, the heroes believe they have the right to the world's loot, and so start stealing whatever catches their interest. This is what gets them roped into the game's plot.
      • Matt using his Ragnarok Limit Break for the first time will have him say "Check out my sword collection! All unique. All stolen."
  • Kleptomaniac Hero Found Underwear: It is possible to find panties if you loot enough places. One of the last quests in EBF4 requires you to give three of them to someone.
  • Lampshade Hanging: Roszak really likes this trope.
    Matt: I'm starting to wonder if dragons have bodies, I mean all we've seen are their heads!
  • Laser-Guided Amnesia: The ending for EBF5 reveals the game's technically not so much a Reboot as it our heroes having their minds wiped and shoved into an alternate scenario by the Devourer. Its demise gives them their memories back.
  • Last Chance Hit Point: The Morale status in EBF4 leaves the character at 1 hit point if they were hit by an otherwise-lethal attack when above half their maximum health. This even works against the Glitch's otherwise One-Hit Kill attack.
  • Last Lousy Point: Certain single coins or far-off chests in Adventure Story can be this.
  • Lava Surfing: Darkly but hilariously subverted. One guy in the first bonus dungeon of EBF5 tries to surf on lava. Matt snarkily remarks that he hopes someone records it, otherwise it would be a waste of life. Come back later and you can find his apparently lavaproof surfboard stuck in lava next to likely his skull.
  • Lazy Backup: Thankfully, doesn't happen in EBF4 — if your frontline party is completely incapacitated and your backup is still alive, they'll jump to the front.
  • Limited Animation: The idols in 4 really stand out in the way that they have only one cohesive sprite. Most characters from the game have a number of segments to them that move and stretch for their actions, but the Idols are completely unmoving.
  • Legacy Boss Battle: EBF4 has the Woolly Mammoth, the Beholder, the Sandworm, Jack, and the Protector from EBF3, as well as the Zombie Hydra from EBF2, as mini-bosses. And on Battle Mountain, the Cosmic Monolith can be found.
  • Leit Motif: Prominent throughout the series. An example being Rage of the Abandoned (played during a difficult encounter) and Derelict Factory of Twisted Metal. Both are essentially the same thing, but the latter sounds more rearranged.
  • Level Scaling:
    • The enemy encounters and superbosses from Battle Mountain in EBF4 do this.
    • In EBF5, all optional areas, such as the Forgotten Ruins and the Glitch Areas, will have the enemies scale to your level or higher.
  • Life Meter: In all the main games, and Adventure Story:
    • In all those games, the player characters have such meters.
      • 1: The players are at the bottom of the screen, but enemies' only appear when you hit them, then fade away after a while.
      • 2:
      • The enemies and the players' are at the bottom of the screen.
      • 3:
      • The enemies' are in the bottom right of the battle screen.
      • The party's is shown in the menus, and in the bottom left of the battle screen.
      • 4:
      • The party's is shown outside of battle, in the Party section of the screen in the bottom left corner, along with Mana Meter, Experience Meter, the Summon Points Meter, and how much money the party has.
      • The enemies' are in the bottom right of the battle screen.
      • The party's is shown in the menus, and in the bottom left of the battle screen.
      • Adventure Story: Only the Matt, the protagonist, has such a meter, which is a Heart Symbol, making it also Hearts Are Health.
  • Light Is Not Good: Creator Godcat is just as willing to destroy humanity and catkind as Destroyer Godcat.
  • Lightning Bruiser:
    • GODCAT in her main light and dark forms. RIDICULOUS HP, attack power that can kill you several times over until you're close in level, and evasion so DAMN high that you have no chance in hell of reliably hitting her! In fact, the game crashes if you kill Godcat by hacking!
    • To a lesser extent, some bosses and minibosses have very high evasion without losing out in other stats, such as Praetorian Mk 2 and the Cosmic Monoliths.
  • Limit Break: EBF2 gives Matt and Natalie one specific limit break each; both of them reappear later as "Cleaver" and "Kyun" respectively. In EBF3, each character has up to three to choose from. In EBF4, characters can have up to eight limit breaks!
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: There are a LOT of NPCs; that's not even all of them.
  • Magikarp Power:
    • The weapons and armors themselves can be more or less, depending on your playstyle, in the 3rd and 4th games. An example is the Sky Feather in the fourth game. When it starts out, it's rather difficult to use and isn't as powerful as other options, but upgraded, it can, if used right, allow Anna to spam spells and restore her magic constantly. Again, it's more of a your mileage may vary, but for the most part, upgraded items are much more useful than they would appear at low levels.
    • Another are the soldier jackets and helmets in EBF3, which you start out with and which resist bomb-type attacks (which no enemy has for the first half of the game). When fully upgraded, they drop medipacks and air strikes nearly every other turn.
    • Red Ribbon in EBF5. Natalie starts with it, suggesting it will fall by the wayside by the end of the game, but once leveled to maximum, it randomly grants Auto-Revive. It will become your mainstay.
  • Man-Eating Plant: Although Rafflesia (the Jungle boss in the fourth game) does not eat the characters, it has a huge maw full of sharp teeth that looks very carnivorous.
  • Marathon Boss:
    • Godcat to some extent. She is basically two bosses in one battle — first you fight one, then the other, and then both at once, with breather waves to heal up and buff up. The battle takes a while, so you might want to clear an hour or two from your schedule before trying.
    • The Bonus Boss Neon Valhalla is especially notable example because 1) It has high HP and defense, 2) it has permanent, unremovable Regen and most importantly 3) it periodically summons three parts that are, more often than not, the various bombs that give you three turns before firing and wiping out your party with ridiculous damage, so most of the fight you'll end up destroying these while Valhalla is healing itself. Curse is mandatory.
    • The same game's Cosmic Gigalith and The Devourer have, on Normal Difficulty, the total HP of over 6 million. The Devourer also has four auxiliary parts that can potentially heal it, and absorbs Virus and Poison that its tentacles can spread when wounded. Needless to say you'll be there for a while.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: One of the debuffs in 4 onward, and a more devastating one at that. Thankfully, this debuff is pretty rare, as only certain attacks wielded by stronger foes (bosses included) can inflict it. The other plus is that it weakens by 5% each turn, like all the other debuffs. 5 Also introduces Scorch that works like burn with added effect of reducing your maximum HP by 5% each turn when in effect.
  • Meaningful Name: Cactussa of the fourth game has a quest to gather five cacti and a Jungle Flower, saying:
    Do you have some cacti for me?!
    I'm a bit obsessed with them!
  • Mirror Boss: The Dark Players on Battle Mountain. Watch out, as they also come equipped with Matt, Natalie, Lance, and Anna's Limit Breaks. EBF 5 has also them and adds the No Legs' counterpart, God, as well.
  • Mini-Mecha: They typically appear as bosses throughout the series.
  • Minus World: Some of the secret areas in the game are represented as a glitchy pixel that acts as a portal to whisk you into a secret level where the music is a chiptune derivative and most of the enemies are glitched-out Grey Pixels and Dead Pixels.
  • The Missingno.:
    • The Glitch is a take on this trope. More normally, Pumpkin Slimes can't normally be seen in the game except as a glimpse from The Glitch.
    • Grey Pixels, Red Pixels, Green Pixels and Dead Pixels, as well as their Elite Mook cousins that have a jumble of garbage and hex characters for a name, are all glitch enemies with weird properties.
  • Missing Secret: Parodied in the fourth game. Supposedly, you can get the Lance of Creation and Blade of Destruction as drops from Godcat's standard forms, in a game where equipment is always gotten from quests and chests. "Supposedly" because their drop rates are 0%, and said enemies are invincible anyway. It's just a tease from Roszak.
  • Monster Compendium: The Bestiary from the second game onwards.
  • Mook Medic: The Friend Dogs, Heasies, White Clays, and more from EBF4. Shoot the Medic First.
  • More Dakka: Lance's arsenal includes his Gunblade revolver, a bazooka, and a tank. With the right equipment, he can get to use all of them in a single turn.
  • Mook Promotion: The Cosmic Monolith goes from a Boss in Mook Clothing to a legitimate boss in the fourth game's Battle Mountain. It goes back to being a standard enemy in the fifth game.
  • Moth Menace: Despite their name, the Wasp line of enemies has only the first one looking like a wasp. The others look more and more like severely mutated butterflies as the game goes on
  • Mr. Fanservice: To different degrees, Matt and Lance.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Natz. It gets taken to a whole new level in the second game's Game Over screen, where her dress is nearly ripped apart. You can even click her breasts to induce Gainaxing. Taken Up to Eleven in the third game with her Cat Girl and Cow Girl outfits. In each game, she invokes the trope in her healing "Limit Break", and lampshades it at least once per game. Anna from the fourth is clearly not impressed, or jealous, but it's hard to tell, by Natz' stature, and during the remarks where she openly says something it's clear Natz is annoyed by it.
  • Multi-Melee Master: Matt, in all four games. Excluding a few pieces of concept art, it's never shown where he stashes all of his swords; in battle, he just glows and voila, the sword changes.
  • Multiple Endings: 5 has a variant. While the overall ending is the same, the "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue varies depending on how high or low each party member's hidden Relationship Values with each other is.
  • My Name Is ???: In the fourth game:
    • During the Final Boss Previews, the bosses' names are just "???".
    • The skull-mask wearing person in Lankyroot Jungle has only "???" for their name.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • Every "mecha" enemy in the series (the Mecha from EBF1, the Guardian from EBF2, and the Praetorian from EBF4) was designed with one of Roszak's earliest games/projects, "Mecha Dress Up".
    • The presence of the Light Warriors sculptures becomes a bit funnier when one realizes that Roszak previously worked on a popular series known as "Attack of the Black Mages", the fifth of which marked the appearance of his current artistic style (as well as Natz's debut).
    • There is a NPC named Mao in Glacier Valley who will say a line from Roszak's first animation, "I no speck england".
    • When the Ancient Monolith uses an energy beam on the party, Matt will say that he once knew a spiky yellow-haired guy who shot beams like that, referencing FFBattle. Or the first EBF. Or Final Fantasy VII.
    • With EBF5 doing a Continuity Reboot, there's naturally quite a lot of these in the game, like Matt commenting on feeling like he remembers using his signature Heaven's Gate sword (which is no longer default) when he obtains it in the game.
  • Nerf:
    • The skill Guardian (renamed Guardian Shield in EBF5) has zigzags this several times. In EBF3, it buffs the target ally's defense and magic defense by up to 60% and evasion by up to 30%, and heals them slightly. In 4, it loses the healing, but gains 70% (magic) defense buffs and a 35% evasion buff. In 5, it also loses the evasion buff, in exchange for raising the defense and magic defense buffs to at least 80 percent at maximum level!
    • EBF3's examples of Infinity +1 Element also had this in 4. Poison stacks drop by 1 each turn and scale less to enemy HP, while more enemies resist bomb attacks, although it's only a mild nerf; nevertheless, they can still be good elements to have on hand.
      • Natalie's "Kyun" Limit Break was hit hard with the nerf gun in EBF4. Specifically, in the second and third games, it heals all players, buffs their attack, magic attack, defense, and magic defense by up to 50% while debuffing the same stats of the enemies. In 4, it loses the ability to debuff! However, EBF5, as well as renaming it to "7th Heaven" and changing the animation, buffs it again by making it affect all living allies in backup, which doesn't happen in 4. And it makes Natalie lovable, thus unable to be targeted by single-target attacks.
    • Quite a few skills zigzag this trope, as one one hand, they are nerfed by the skill cooldown system in EBF5, as now you can't spam Healmore every turn, for example (at least without giving the user apple slices to reduce their cooldowns). On the other hand, some of these attacks have something to compensate for the cooldowns:
      • Judgement has a 2-turn cooldown and loses its ability to inflict Weaken, but finally regains its Life Drain ability from the first two games.
      • Legend also has a 2-turn cooldown but no longer makes Matt tired when used.
      • Unload has a whopping 5-turn cooldown but no longer debuffs Lance's attack.
      • Lance's fire skills each have a 1-turn cooldown, but they debuff the targets' defense. His dark skills now lower enemy magic defense. His plasma skills, however, are closer to an actual nerf, continuing to debuff enemy evasion but having the cooldown like his fire and dark skills.
      • Reflex (now called Reflex Breeze) has a 5-turn cooldown like Protective Shield and Magic Barrier, cures Shroud status (see Standard Status Effects below) as well as buffing everyone's evade.
      • Dark Pulsar has a 2-turn cooldown, but possesses the exact same power (skill-based factor for damage per target hit) as Dark Pulse.
    • Monoliths were made more vulnerable to Syphon (which completely shuts them down) in the fourth game. In addition, their strongest attacks now require a turn to charge, making them less able to vaporize your party out of the blue. The laser for the Cosmic Monolith's Doomsday attack also no longer deals damage or debuffs accuracy, and it no longer hits the Monolith's side (which would heal the Monolith as it absorbs Dark).
    • The Updated Re Release of EBF3 applied several nerfs, mostly to enemies:
      • The Pyrohydra had its health reduced, and their Fire absorption and Abyss's poison absorption were lessened; this drastically cuts down on Blaze's healing output and Abyss's Healing Factor.
      • The Viking Monolith's Wave Motion Gun attack has a much lower freeze chance outside of Epic difficulty.
      • The Cosmic Monolith's Doomsday had its damage reduced.
      • Poison now deals less damage to enemies.
      • The Soul Eater sword had its defense reductions increased.
  • New Game+: In the third game, it's possible to start a new game while retaining your levels, skills, items, etc. It is very satisfying to go through again and easily destroy every single boss that gave you trouble previously.
    • The fourth game has one only available on Kongregate or Steam, and must be bought with real money. This version offers two additional playthroughs in which all of your levels, skills, and equips transfer automatically, but the enemies are higher in level than the previous playthrough. This is even lampshaded in the ending cutscene!
  • Nice Hat: Matt always wears a pirate hat in the games. In the third game, he even swims with his hat on. The third game gives him and Lance different hats to wear, but chances are you'll never see them without a hat on.
  • Ninja: In the third and fourth games, there's Ninja equipment for both guys and Natz.
  • Ninja Cat: In the fifth game, one of the types of cat that can be fought, are "Cat Ninja", who are "very evasive cats".
  • Ninja Pirate Robot Zombie: The equipment system means your characters will swap around a fair bit from being dressed as knights, ninjas, pirates, vikings, etc. as you go through the game. Or just some simple combination of these things if you don't bother completely coordinating a single character's outfit or lack the corresponding hat/armor.
  • No-Damage Run: Playing any level without getting hit is possible in the spinoff games.
    • Adventure Story has an achievement for defeating a boss this way.
    • Doing this is one of the best ways to achieve high scores in both Bullet Heaven games, alongside using handicaps in the second!
  • No Fair Cheating: Downplayed in the Bullet Heaven duology; both games have built-in cheats, but using them only drops your score and rank.
  • No Fourth Wall: The characters have no compulsions against Breaking the Fourth Wall, and the fifth game contains an in-game fanart gallery which the characters will comment on the pieces while viewing...and the characters will be explicitly barred from the gallery or various rooms within it from a lack of medals.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: The Beholder, which mostly existed throughout the series as a Naughty Tentacles joke. The fifth game has its derivative, the Devourer, be behind all the other games and even literally deletes the world.
  • No-Sell: Two examples in the third game:
    • Red slimes, both the normal and giant variety, are immune to magic damage, making Natalie mostly useless against them, except for the Meow-Meow summon, which takes several hits to kill even the small ones. Lance stands a better chance against them, as he has guns that can hit their weaknesses.
    • Skull ghosts, returning from the first game, are immune to physical damage instead, rendering Matt unable to damage them except for certain magic skills that may not always be cast with any single-target attack. Natalie and Lance can blast away at these guys with Judgement and Bullet Hell to quickly kill them.
    • The Glitch in the fourth game. It will do this to all damage from every element, making it a unique enemy in the game wherein its only weakness is non-elemental damage.
    • You can do this in EBF5 via two status effects. Both of them have a drawback of course. Note that status effects are still inflicted:
      • Invisible makes you immune to the physical damage, but you'll take twice the damage from magic attacks.
      • Enchanted makes you immune to the magic damage, but you'll take twice the damage from physical attacks. Very useful when a boss or something else is about to perform a charged attack, and against Monoliths in general.
  • Nonlethal Bottomless Pits: In the platformer spinoff.
  • Non-Elemental: The Lucky Star and Star Shower spells do non-elemental damage, while some high-end weapons have no element (and no resistance) in exchange for doing high damage. These are necessary to defeat The Glitch in the fourth game.
  • Non-Nazi Swastika: This is set up purposefully. The Big Bad Lance is portrayed as a neo-Nazi intent on destroying the world to rebuild it. However, if one looks carefully at his uniform, his swastika is facing the other direction from the Nazi swastika to form the Buddhist symbol for peace, an appropriate reflection of his ultimate motives.
  • Non-Lethal Bottomless Pits: In Adventure Story, falling into a pit inflicts a fixed amount of damage depending on difficulty, ranging from 5 on Easy to 20 on Epic. Knocking enemies into pits tends to kill them instantly.
  • No One Gets Left Behind: Humorously averted in the third game. Matt expresses fear over crossing an unstable bridge, and Lance just says that the party isn't coming back for him if he falls.
  • Normally, I Would Be Dead Now:
    • With Morale status in EBF4 and 5, any character or foe can survive any single-hit attack that would otherwise One-Hit Kill them, with exactly 1 HP. This works not only with overkill levels of damage, but also instant death (which otherwise bypasses the Hit Points system)! The one condition is you have to be above 50% HP for it to work.
      • Also, careful emphasis on the "single-hit" part, because it does not work if a multi-hit attack reduces the target to said 1 HP before the final hit. Neither that or knocking the target below 50% HP with multiple smaller hits, then dealing a powerful blow (such as with (Dark) Matt's Legend).
    • Bullet Heaven 2 allows you a small window of time to counter damage by using a bomb. Even if you have one heart left, meaning it actually prevents death here. This feature can be disabled via a handicap that removes this window, in exchange for a higher score.
  • North Is Cold, South Is Hot: Inverted in the fourth game. The snow village is on the south edge of the map, while the beach village is on the north edge.
  • Not Me This Time: Our heroes may be kleptomaniacs, but they're not the ones behind the Greenwood jewel heist in EBF4.
  • Notice This: Appears in multiple games:
    • Several instances in the third game.
    • In the fourth game, important locations have a sparkle effect to indicate they can be interacted with.
  • Number of the Beast:
    • In Bullet Heaven, you get a medal for dying with over 666 bullets on the screen.
    • In EBF3, there's a treasure chest early in Volcano Peak that contains 666 Gold as well as a couple of crafting items.
  • Numerical Hard: Averted:
    • In main games, enemies get better AI and skills in addition to stat increases on higher difficulties. Sometimes they also start with statuses that are beneficial to them, for example poison-absorbing foes start with poison.
    • The sequel to Bullet Heaven adds a lot more of bullets to enemy attacks.
  • Obstructive Foreground: The third game uses this extensively to hide treasure chests. The fourth game just hides treasure within objects, but still uses this trope from time to time.
  • Oh My Gods!: In the fourth game, "Oh My Godcat" is used occasionally.
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: Some of the songs:
  • Ominous Pipe Organ: Each game has one, at least after the Early Installment Weirdness of EBF1.
    • EBF2 has Organ Jaws, a classically sinister usage of Ominous Pipe Organ.
    • EBF3 has DiVINe MaDNEss, featuring a more frantic and chaotic take on the trope.
    • EBF4 has Fallen Blood, leading off with the organ before taking a turn for the heavier.
  • One-Hit Kill:
    • The first two games have a pattern where the second-to-last boss and the last boss have one. One of the zombie hydra's attacks, and one of the tank's cannons in the second game, and the spirit bomb and mega lazer in the first. Thankfully, all of these (except for the Zombie Hydra's instant-death spell) are Charged Attacks, and they aren't true One-Hit Kills — they just do such ridiculously high damage that they might as well be. As long as your HP is high enough, you can use the Defend Command to avoid utter annihilation.
    • One of the platforms that the Valkyrie tank can bring up to assist itself is a nuke-launching station. Its only attack is to advance a countdown. And the nuke will be launched at you when it ends. The only way to save yourself from that one is to demolish the nuke station before this can happen. And it's entirely possible for it to have two nukes being prepared for launch simultaneously. For more Final Boss cheapness, Goku from the first game still gets to take his turn after his Spirit Bomb lands. Thankfully (or not), he never spends that turn charging up another Spirit Bomb. Instead, he uses one of his other super-painful moves. Though he cannote  launch another Spirit Bomb on the turn after that.
    • The third game adds in a handful of regular enemies that can use these (or, more specifically, that instant-death move that the Zombie Hydra used). You'll know when this is the case because the display indicating how much damage you took will read "DEATH" instead of a numerical value. By the way, that little Grim Reaper isn't the only enemy move that can cause instant death anymore... it's just the only one that's guaranteed to be a One-Hit Kill if it connects. And you've got quite a few One-Hit Kill moves in your arsenal, as well (though most of them are functions of specific weapons).
    • Each time The Glitch or its flunkies attack, it KO's a party member by dealing 0 DAMAGE.
    Any surviving party member when this happens: How?!
    Any surviving party member when this happens again: Why?!
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Bullet Heaven 2's survival levels play this to the letter, but you also have a bomb and counter-bombing can't be disabled here; this effectively gives you one spare hit. It's still lower than the five hits you can effectively take normally, although you rank and score will suck if you beat a level that way.
    • Can be invoked by the player with the One Heart handicap, in exchange for a better score multiplier. The true form of this would be enabling this and "No Death-Bombing"!
  • One Steve Limit: We have main character Lance and minor character Lancelot.
  • Only the Pure of Heart: In the fourth game, as Kate of Greenwood Village says:
    Slime Bunnies are magical creatures who reveal themselves to those with pure hearts.
    • She's probably wrong considering our "heroes" can use them just fine.
  • Our Banshees Are Louder: Matt's "Fear" special conjures up a ghost that shrieks directly in an enemy's face, doing Dark damage.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Dragons start appearing in the second game onwards, but are only rendered as heads and a long neck (which gets lampshaded in the fourth game). EBF5 changes the Zombie Hydra and variants to "Wyrms" to justify their appearance, but the standard dragons keep their species.
  • Outside The Box Tactics: The battles against the recruitable party members in EBF5 can all be ended through alternative means, instead of just beating the crap out of whoever's about to join your party. You actually get a medal for doing it.

     Tropes P-T 
  • Palette Swap: In the first game, there are different colored versions of enemies:
  • Panty Shot:
    • Matt looks up the dress of the angel that revives Matt and Natalie in the second game.
    • While we don't get to see it, Lance seemed to get flashed when the party tried to jump across a cliff. After he made it, Matt tried to carry Natz across, and accidentally held her at a rather awkward angle.
  • Panty Thief: One of the tasks involves collecting panties for an NPC. There's even a medal called Panty Thief.
  • Patchwork Map:
    • It's hidden, but in the fourth game, look at a completed map. There is a desert right next to snow-covered plains separated only by a small set of mountains. It's not a wasteland desert like the game before, but it is still sandy plains that don't have a touch of snow.
    • The third game is more obvious, having a tundra right between a desert and a beach. You can even see the ground quickly transitioning from one biome to another at the very edge of the screens.
  • Parasol of Pain: The last hidden item in Adventure Story is a surprisingly good weaponized umbrella.
  • Parasol Parachute: Jumping in midair with this equipped will slow Matt's descent on top of the above.
  • Peek-a-Bangs: Anna's hair shades nicely over her right eye.
  • Pictorial Speech Bubble: One of Natalie's victory animations in EBF 3 has her with a speech bubble of a Heart Symbol.
  • Pinball Points: The first two games do this with damage, with regular attacks doing four figures' worth from the very beginning. The third one does away with this with the introduction of a more traditional Experience Points system.
  • The Pin Is Mightier Than the Sword: In the fourth installment, with useful badges and other types of flair.
  • Plant Mooks: While the Bushes and Trees technically qualify, there are actual flower foes in EBF4, which are elemental flowers:
    • Heasy
    • Frose
    • Stunflower
    • Florn
    • Rainbloom.
  • Plot Armor: Matt and Natalie both die from food poisoning in the second game, but are revived by an angel shortly after. This is even lampshaded verbatim in the art gallery!
  • Powers Do the Fighting: Equipping lots of autocast clothes can result in this, as they can activate at the very beginning of a battle.
  • The Power of Rock: The Power Metal attack, which plays a small bit of "Through the Fire and Flames" in the first three games, and a piece of "Winter Night's Journey (Through the Storm)" in the fourth game.
  • Preexisting Encounters: In the third and fourth games, most foes appear on the map, and you initiate battles by interacting with them. The enemy encounters that don't appear on the map trigger when you step on specific tiles. The good news is that they don't actively chase you and the ones that block important paths don't respawn.
    • Actually Four Mooks: Any enemy encounter in these games is represented by a single enemy, meaning that harmless-looking bush could actually contain a four-wave (or longer) marathon battle (*cough* Battle Mountain *cough*). Fortunately, each encounter usually shows the strongest monster fought in said encounter, thus lowering the number of bad surprises.
  • Putting on the Reich:
    • Lance's outfit in the second game is quite... Nazi-like.
    • In the third and fourth game, you can re-attain the outfit and equip it on Lance or Matt. It provides a notable amount of Dark resistance, and when maxed out, will provide extra tank attacks randomly. It's worth noting that it lacks any Swastikas and becomes the "Officer's Coat" and "Officer's Hat", though it keeps its appearance. Also, Lance's tank keeps its Balkenkreuz insignia in all appearances.
  • Puzzle Boss:
    • A Bonus Boss in EBF4 works like this — their scan shows that they absorb every element and are immune to every status effect. However, scans say nothing about non-elemental attacks, and the boss is vulnerable to those.
    • The Armored Oak and Diamond Golem on EBF4's Battle Mountain have a status effect weakness that is vital to taking them out (Poison for the Oak, Curse for the Golem).
    • Rainbow Rafflesia will abuse the Bless buff to maintain its Magic Attack and Magic Defense buff for the rest of the battle. This makes the boss much more resilient, but also makes it vulnerable to Giga Drill because of how the MDEF buff never goes away.
    • The Evil Players in 5 fight much like the Dark Players in 4, only they force a permanent status effect on the party as long as they're alive. All but the last Evil Player will limit the tactics the player can use, forcing them to make better use of tricks that aren't affected by the status effects. The last Evil Player gives the party a beneficial "Epic" status effect, but is balanced to easily kill party members if they aren't fully buffed from Epic, forcing rotations of party members if they die and revive.
  • Rainbow Pimp Gear:
  • Raising the Steaks: The fourth game has Undead Bears.
  • Random Effect Spell: Mog in the first game, NoLegs in the second and third games, and Friend Dog in the fourth game, supply a random consumable item to be immediately eaten. It may not be useful if it, say, buffs your mage's attack, but in a pinch it becomes the best way to replenish your MP without using expensive or limited magic-replenishing items.
  • Randomized Damage Attack: Lucky Star is cheap on MP but deals wildly random damage, ranging from a mere tickle to devastating output for such a skill. 3 onward has Star Shower, which is Area of Effect and hits multiple times, too.
  • Relationship Upgrade: Matt and Natalie become a couple in the ending of the 5th game.
  • Reboot: Instead of following on from the previous games, Epic Battle Fantasy 5 will apparently start over from scratch, with the protagonists meeting for the first time.
  • Red Filter of Doom:
    • Bullet Heaven 2 briefly turns the background red when you die, alongside slowing remaining enemies and bullets.
    • Epic Battle Fantasy 5 follows suit; losing the last living party member(s) results in the background turning red for a moment before the Game Over screen...
      • Even Auto Revive doesn't prevent the red "flash", though it does otherwise work as normal.
  • Reference Overdosed: Just look at the Shout Outs page.
  • Recurring Boss: Chibi Knight in the fifth game.
  • Retcon: The first game ended with a Heroic Sacrifice. The heroes are inexplicably alive and well at the start of the second, although the cutscene text states that they faced "a slow and painful recovery".
  • Respawning Enemies: Enemy encounters in 3 and 4 may respawn once you leave the area, if said enemies weren't blocking a path and/or key item.
  • Ret Gone: The Devourer tries to do this to Godcat between 4 and 5. It isn't quite perfect, since NoLegs can still summon her as his limit breaks. Also, her religion remains intact, causing everyone to see the new God as a cat. Natalie also recognizes Godcat if NoLegs summons her while Natalie is in the front line.
  • Reviving Enemy:
    • From the fourth game, Spirits come into battle with Auto-Revive. If they are killed without dispelling it first, they come back to life.
    • Zombie Hydra heads will regenerate themselves if the other head(s) are left alive for too long.
    • The Mammoths in EBF5 have the ability to revive their fallen partners.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Especially if they're also Gunblades.
  • Rule of Fun: The whole point of the series.
  • Say It with Hearts: The Pictorial Speech Bubble version.
    • In the third game, it happens if a character eats something they like.
    • In the fourth game:
      • Some characters say it on the victory screen, randomly.
      • Natalie says it when hit by the Beholder's Censored attack.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Akron, though said seal turns out to be absurdly weak. Godcat is the one who sealed it.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike:
    • Zigzagged between games 1-2 and 3-4. On one hand, games 3 and up allow you to save nearly anywhere outside of combat and aren't as wave-based as the first two games. On the other hand, enemies and bosses tend to be require more strategy and specific equipment setups in the latter two games.
    • Zigzagged with 5 as well. The cooldown system means on one hand that you can spam some attacks with impunity, like Firestorm, but the other, like the all-critical Heal More, have cooldowns and therefore cannot be spammed like in previous entries with sufficient MP count.
  • Sequel Escalation/Sorting Algorithm of Evil: The first game's final boss was Zombie Goku, again. Not so awful for Matt and Natz to deal with, you say, aside from him destroying a good portion of the world upon his defeat. The second game has them fight the guy trying to take over the world in the aftermath of the first game. Again, not so horrible to deal with, especially compared to the final boss of the original... then we get to EBF3, where the main villain is a demonic being of god-like power who represents a huge threat to the world relative to previous final bosses, and to existence in general. And the final boss of EBF4 is Godcat herself.
  • Sequel Hook: The second game tells you that you get a new party member at the very end of the game.
  • Self-Deprecation: When the party reflects on the events of the story at the end of the fourth game. Matt enjoys that the majority of the plot was about cats. Lance found the character in their journey bland and underdeveloped. Natz is disappointed that there wasn't any romance and worries she doesn't trust that to be left to the fans.
  • Schmuck Bait: In all games, Matt has a move called "Screamer", as in the "Scary Maze" kind of screamer. Thankfully, the accompanying scream is kept to a reasonable decibel level. note 
  • Screamer Prank: Matt's "Screamer" special conjures up a color-inverted picture of a dog and lets loose a bloodcurdling shriek. It hits all enemies for Dark damage and reduces Magic Defense. However, since it runs off of Magic Attack, he's unlikely to do much damage with it, so in the fourth game giving it to Anna might be a better choice.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge:
    • Play as one player. Or two in the third game, seeing how some battles have up to five enemies in one wave, in contrast to the first two games' three. This makes a one-player run nearly impossible and stunning/freezing enemies (2 onward) will make these challenges harder.
    • The fourth allows you to set the difficulty whenever you want. Also, as a more fair variation on the above example, you can try beating the fourth game on Epic without changing the difficulty while keeping Lance in your backup slot the entire time (this means no TotalPartyKills on the front line).
  • Sequence Breaking: 4 has a glitch that allows you to warp to the other side of the map tile you were just on, allowing you to reach virtually any area of the map in minutes while completely avoiding combat! Here's a speedrun that exploits the glitch.
  • Sexy Whatever Outfit: Basically everything the female PCs wear. There are a few armors which might not look too provocative on Anna, but you can probably be sure that won't hold on Natz. Pretty much the only armors that doesn't look of this trope at all on any of the ladies is the Shrine Maiden Dress and White Mage Dress.
    • Played for Laughs in 5, because Natalie's inexplicably stuck with these (when NSFW content is allowed) while Anna's are generally more respectable.
  • Sexy Santa Dress: Playing the fourth game very completely might result in you missing this one from your inventory. You have to set you computer's clock to December unless your playthrough lasts through that month.
  • Shoot the Medic First:
    • You'll be doing this often enough that even Matt recognizes it as a good idea.
    Matt: A healing plant! Must kill!
    • Actually averted with the Woolly Mammoth boss in EPF3: killing any of the healing mooks he starts the battle with will likely replace them with a Viking Monolith, which is far more aggravating than merely healing. And since the mammoth's most exploitable weakness is poison, and maximum poison does more damage than can be healed...
  • Shout-Out: Now with its own page.
  • Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: Lance's virulent dislike of NoLegs is this, as Lance refuses to allow him to have opinions or participate in his conversations because he's a filthy animal.
    • NoLegs against Slime Bunny in 4.4, when Slime Bunny threatens his position of cute pet for the team to fawn over.
  • Spectral Weapon Copy: The Seiken / Light Blade / Light Sword skills make sword-shaped objects that seem to be made of light.
  • Spikes of Doom: Downplayed in Adventure Story; hitting spikes deals as much damage as falling into Non-Lethal Bottomless Pits (a whopping 20 on Epic, though), but doesn't instantly kill you unless you don't have enough health to sustain the damage.
    • You can force enemies into the spikes to gradually damage them. There's even an achievement for it!
    • The "Temper" skill, which raises your attack and defense, can actually reduce damage taken from hitting spikes, unlike with bottomless pits.
  • Stock RPG Spells: Being a parody of RPGs in general, many examples of this trope and included sub-tropes are present.
    • Herd-Hitting Attack: Both Natz and Lance have access to a great deal of Area of Effect attacks. Lance also has Chaining attacks.
    • Non-Elemental: Attacks which deal non-elemental damage are surprisingly scarce. Even melee attacks are almost always elemental, unless the weapons themselves have no element.
    • Summon Magic: Added in the fourth game. Summons can be called by any player character. They are further made distinct from Skills and Specials in that they consume a party-shared SP (Summon Points) meter which is only replenished by killing monsters.
      • Furthermore, their damage is dependent on the level of the user, as opposed to (Magic) Attack; however, their power is boosted by matching elemental weapons just like regular skills!
      • Natalie had her own Summon Magic in the first two games, but they use MP like any other special technique.
  • Stock Monsters: Most often played straight, or zig-zagged. The series includes the usual Slimes, poisonous Insects, Mecha-Mooks, The Undead, Golems, Dragons, Things with tentacles and lots of Elementals.
  • Storm of Blades: The Ragnarok spell, where blades from Matt's collection rain down from space / the sky.
  • Straight Man: Natz to Matt throughout most of their existence, and Anna to her teammates in the fourth game.
  • Stuff Blowing Up:
    • Bomb is considered an element in the series, used primarily by Lance. It's effective against machinery and rock/metal enemies.
    • Many enemies, including bosses, explode when killed.
  • Solid Clouds: Clouds are solid, BUT unless you have the Cloudwalking Boots, they won't support the weight of four people.
  • Super-Deformed: The party members, NPCs, and enemies are drawn in chibi style on the overworld map in the third game onwards.
  • Standard Status Effects:
    • Burn: The "Burn" status effect. Inflicts Fire-elemental damage each turn. Water- or Ice-elemental damage cures this status.
    • Stun: The "Paralyzed" status effect. Sufferers of this status always lose their turn for the indicated duration. In the fourth game, it also causes earth attacks to deal extra damage,
    • Freeze: The "Frozen" status effect. Similar to Stun, except that being attacked or healed removes the status. If attacked, the formerly frozen target receives extra damage.
    • Tired: An unusual status effect which piles on Accuracy and Evade debuffs for every turn it remains in effect.
    • Poison: The "Poison" status effect. Inflicts Poison-elemental damage each turn. Unlike most Poison, however, the damage can be converted to healing if you absorb the Poison element. It also deals a lot more damage if the stack of turns left on it is higher.
    • Dispel: Removes all stat increases and positive status effects from the target. Technically an anti-status effect, but players and monsters have a Dispel resistance stat.
    • Stagger: An unusual status effect which makes the next hit taken a Critical Hit. Lasts for one turn.
    • Syphon: The "Silence" status effect. Skills and Specials are disabled.
    • Wet: An unusual status effect which amplifies damage taken from Thunder- and Ice-elemental damage but reduces damage from Fire damage.
    • Weak: An unusual status effect. Similar to Tired, it piles on Attack and Magic Attack debuffs each turn it remains in effect. It also causes the character to take extra damage from Dark attacks.
    • Curse: The "Curse" status effect. Similar to Weak and Tired, it piles on Defense and Magic Defense debuffs each turn it remains in effect. It also causes the character to take extra damage from Holy attacks.
    • Death: The "Instant Death" status effect. If it succeeds, the target is instantly KO'd.
    • Doom: The "Doom" status effect. Inflicts Death once the counter falls to 0.
    • Berserk: The "Berserk" status effect. The character automatically uses a normal attack on their turn, but their attack power is increased. Note that Matt, Lance, and Anna will randomly cast their strongest non-Limit Break physical attacks (Legend, Unload, and Combo Shot respectively) when berserk in EBF4, possibly turning this into a case of Status Buff.
    • Slimed: The "Weird Transformation" status effect. The target is temporarily turned into a little Slime monster. Similar to Stun, except this effect cannot be cured with a status-effect-curing spell and the victim has highly reduced stats. It wears off after a number of turns, or when the target is KO'd.
    • Hunger: An unusual status effect. The affected target will eat random food items until the status is gone.
    • Stuffed: An unusual status effect. The affected target cannot eat any items.
    • Virus: An unusual status effect. Similar to poison, but remains in effect indefinitely until dispelled. Can also be passed along to allies and foes alike by interacting with them (attacking, passing a food item, etc.)
    • Scorch: Similar to Burn, but also removes 10% of the victim's maximum HP each turn.
    • Confuse: a variant of the "Confuse" status effect. Players with this effect use random skills on their turn(s), but otherwise use these skills normally; no attacking allies/themselves, no healing enemies like with a Charm effect unless the enemy absorbs the element of their chosen skill, etc. The Electric Bat summon casts 9 turns worth of this on the entire active party, "basically initiating auto-battle mode".
    • Shroud: Another unusual status effect. Hides information about the victim, including HP level and buffs.
  • Status Buff: Almost all of which can be removed by "Dispel."
    • Auto-Revive: The "Auto-Revive" status buff. Gained by casting revive on an alive player; this even happens with spells like Natz's Genesis limit break, giving all characters Auto-Revive status. The downside is that it wears off after a few turns.
    • Bless: Grants immunity to all negative status effects, including Dispel, for the duration of the buff.
    • Brave: The "Critical-Up" status buff. Improves critical hit chance and grants critical hit immunity.
    • Charge: The "Charged Attack" status buff. Certain ultra-powerful spells can only be used while the caster has this buff. The 'Charge' effect is consumed when the spell is cast, and it will also disappear on its own after a few turns.
    • Defend: The "Defend" status buff. Reduces all incoming damage by half for the remainder of the turn. Can be granted by selecting "Defend" from the tactics menu, and can be granted to the entire party at once by using the "Ancient Monolith" summon in EBF4.
    • Morale: An interesting status buff that grants a chance of surviving any attack with 1 HP remaining, and prevents instant when above half health.
    • Regen: The "Regeneration" status buff. Restores health at the beginning of each turn.
  • Superstition Episode: In the fifth game, luck is a Status Buff, while being unlucky is a Standard Status Effect.
  • Sword and Sorcerer: Matt and Natz in the first two games.
  • Take Our Word Forit: in the fourth game, the party gets frightened by something on the ceiling of a sacrificial tomb. Since the game takes place from an overhead perspective, though, we don't get to see it.
  • Taking You with Me:
    • The Runes in EBF3, which are summoned by the Protector boss, will launch themselves at you and explode when at low HP, dealing minor damage to the entire party. Runes in EBF4 exhibit similar behavior, but only target one player.
    • Enemies in Bullet Heaven 2 release bullets when killed on higher difficulties.
    • The Copper Fish, Silver Fish, and Gold Fish robots in EBF4 will launch a missile attack at a character when destroyed. The only way to prevent this is to destroy all the enemies in the wave in one attack.
    • One of the plant enemies in EBF4 will launch a suicide attack when low on HP, damaging a random party member in the process.
  • Tank Goodness: Lance's Valkyrie Supertank. In the third and fourth games, Lance has an ability where he orders his boss tank from the second game to fire its machine guns at the enemy. If you find and completely upgrade his old Nazi hat and outfit from the second game, the tank will randomly fire either its machine guns or its main cannon (and sometimes both) at the enemy for free. To top it off, one of Lance's limit breaks involves pounding the tank into the bad guys and then blowing it up.
  • Theme Naming: Either a normal colour or some different shade of a colour.
    • Epic Battle Fantasy 4:
      • Greenwood Village
      • Whitefall Town
      • Graybone Cemetery
      • Goldenbrick Resort
    • Bullet Heaven 2:
      • Greenwood Forest
      • Bubbleblue Beach
      • Goldenbrick Desert
      • Whitefall Glacier
      • Jaderoot Jungle
      • Redroast Volcano
      • Irongray Armony
      • Browngrave Cemetery
  • This Is Gonna Suck: In EBF4, Matt takes one look at the Cosmic Monolith in the Battle Mountain and knows the party's in for a bad time. If you actually fight it, he whimpers out "oh no..."
  • Time-Limit Boss: Twice in EBF5
    • Matteus, the evil golem twin of Matt, gives you 15 turns to defeat him before an automatic Game Over kicks in. Virus and Poison are mandatory on Epic difficulty.
    • The Devourer will delete planet when his HP reaches 25% of the maximum. This inflicts a damage-over-time effect on everyone that raises the longer battle takes. Take too long and it will outdamage any healing you have and kill you.
  • Treasure Room: There's one after each Boss Battle in Adventure Story.
  • They Killed Kenny: Goku is the final boss of three different flash animations by Matt Roszak: "FF6 Battle", "Brawl Royale", and indeed the first Epic Battle Fantasy. He dies in all three, and is resurrected as an increasingly-deformed zombie in each successive game.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: In the fifth game, Matt has an attack where he throws his currently equipped sword at the enemy wave, where it spins around several times and damages all foes with each spin. Approriately enough, it's called "Slicing Cyclone".
    • And before that, both 'Bullet Heaven' games has Matt shooting swords at enemies.
  • Too Awesome to Use:
    • The Ion attack in the second game. While you can use it whenever you want, doing so causes extreme damage to the entire party. Averted when the Final Boss uses it due to their high HP, though it can cut the lifespan of their summoned turrets.
    • In the third game, Natz' Black Hole Limit Break and Lance's Nuke Limit Break will both hurt the party as well as the enemies. (The Ion attack, now also a Limit Break, no longer has this problem.)
      • Actually, Limit Breaks in general are this, as you'll keep saving them for later and typically only end up using them on bosses. The same goes for more costly summons in the fourth game, like the Praetorian, the Protector, and the Cosmic Monolith. Learning to (partially) cast away this mentality and keeping track of both charging bars is one of the most useful advanced techniques you can learn for the nastier bosses and for Battle Mountain's rush waves.
    • In addition, Meow Meow and Catastrophe in the first. Summoning Meow Meow featured a 30% chance of his sword breaking and damaging the party as well (supposedly compensated by hitting the enemy twice when this happens), and Catastrophe's third sword always hit P2 (Natz) for high damage, about 8000 of her 9999 health.
    • Some food items in the fourth game, as they are either only available in chests, very rarely dropped by enemies, or bought in the rare shop (though the price doubles with each purchase). This is subverted due to how enemies gain more per level than the players, making these items essential to surviving Battle Mountain. That said, the player still needs to be smart about how they distribute the stat items.
    • Very rare items in EBF5, such as Espresso, which also buffs your maximum HP and is one of few ways to do so. They cannot be bought at all, so you'll probably save them up for Bonus Boss battles.
  • Too Dumb to Live:
    • Matt (especially Matt), Natz, and Lance are not bright. They die in the second game when they eat a sandworm, despite knowing that it had attacks that implied it was obviously poisonous. Then, they poke a chained, obviously evil demon that steals their power. Lampshaded in the third game, when they admit that solving a puzzle hurt their heads. Natalie gets smarter in the fourth game, though. When a puzzle needs explaining and there isn't an NPC around to help, the others call her over to take a look.
    • Lance believes radiation and smoking have no negative impact on the human body.
    Natz: That's dangerous levels of stupidity right there!
  • Took a Level in Badass: In 4, both small and large slimes can temporarily turn characters into powerless slimes via physical attacks. This makes them far more threatening than in previous games where they were cannon fodder.
  • Trauma Inn: In the third game. It's free, although Natalie pointed out that it wasn't a very good one.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: The Factory in 4 has security robots that refuse to take orders from humans anymore. However, they don't go so far as to kill humans, though the fact that they lock all the doors in the factory means that they're trapped. Furthermore, only security robots turned evil, and worker robots are still benign.

     Tropes U-Z 
  • Underground Monkey: Just about every enemy in the third game onwards has around three/four species variations with different attacks, weaknesses and resistances, and drops. In an interesting use of this trope, none of the enemy variants can really be considered "stronger"; since enemies use a leveling system like the heroes, an early game-enemy can appear among its later-game variants and still be just as strong, meaning that no single enemy becomes obsolete.
  • Unusual Euphemism: "Fffffffffiretruck!" and "Shiiiiiiiiipyards!"
  • Unsound Effect: Any status ailment (such as "DEATH"), or Status Buff has this when applied in EBF4 and 5 (and the Steam update of 3!).
    • This is how NoLegs "communicates" in Bullet Heaven 2 and EBF5 when not meowing.
    NoLegs: *feels right at home*
    NoLegs: *commits violent thoughtcrime*
  • Unwinnable by Mistake: In the third game, a bug may cause the Pyrohydra to respawn, preventing you from returning to the town shop to get items (which are very much required to beat it).
  • Useless Item:
    • The Old Boots in EBF4, which you start the game with and "allow you to go outside." At one point, you trade them away, but it doesn't prevent you from going outside. You trade it for a shovel, which "was going to do something, but doesn't anymore.". Then, you trade the Shovel for the Spiked Boots, which still do nothing except serve as a trade for the actually useful Blue Scroll. Amusingly, another set of Old Boots can be obtained in Battle Mountain.
    • Lampshaded by the flavor text of The Rubber Boots in EBF5, which states that they 'allow you to walk on acidic tiles, but there aren't any in the game at the moment'.
  • Useless Useful Spell: Averted. You need to use buffs and status effects in order to survive.
  • Updated Re-release:
    • A little while after release, the web version of EBF4 received an update that acted like this. It added new enemies, Legacy Boss Battles from previous games (including ones made to guard summons of them that were already implemented), and several stat overhauls. The full changelog is here.
    • The Steam release of EBF3 has a few tweaks, including an enemy wave counter, better visibility of enemy stats, different game speed options, and a buff to Lance's defenses. No new content was added, however.
  • Video Game Settings:
  • Video Game Stealing: The fifth game has a skill, albeit inaccurate, that can steal items from foes. Makes sense, considering our heroes' history.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: Matt's reaction in Bullet Heaven 2 when Natalie points out that the water they've been breathing contains fish and whale poo.
  • Voodoo Doll: EBF5 has one type each for Matt, Natalie, Anna, Lance, and NoLegsnote , with skills taken from the players. The most important feature to keep in mind is that attacking a doll damages its counterpart! In other words, try not to use powerful attacks against them.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss:
    • In the second game, the Guardian, who is almost impossible to beat without giving him status effects — if you don't destroy his limbs, his three attacks per round will bury you, but if you do destroy the limbs but don't stun or syphon him, he'll just regenerate them.
    • In the third game, the Wooly Mammoth boss can kill the party within a few turns if you're not careful. It basically serves to teach that there are more aspects to gameplay than attacking and using spells.
    • The Praetorian, the Giant Mecha in the fourth. He deals MASSIVE damage, and forces you to start planning beyond a Barrier Change Boss with buffs and heals in advance. Namely, if you don't dispel him properly, or smack him with the right debuffs, he'll probably one-shot your entire party.
    • The Rafflesia is a big one if you've just been powering through and ignoring status buffs. Prepare for a nasty, poisonous, stunning, critical-hitting surprise. Not as terrible if the Praetorian managed to teach you the lesson, but it'll make sure you remember it.
  • Walk It Off: From the third game onwards, walking around gradually heals you. If you're too lazy to go back to the city, you can just walk around in a circle.
    • In the fourth and fifth game, it's more like waiting it off, as healing occurs over time regardless of walking. This is done to provide an additional benefit to taking time outside of battle to upgrade skills and equipment.
  • Wasteful Wishing: An NPC in 5 uses the Star Balls to wish for... a mountain of treasure instead of a house. The Players are not amused in the slightest.
  • Wave Motion Gun: A lot of the enemies. Godcat's creation form's in particular is pure pain in beam form. Also, Lance's bomb in the Bullet Heaven games, and his Hyper Beam attack in EBF4, complete with charge-up turn.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: The World 6 boss in Bullet Heaven 2 uses mini-eyeballs as armor, but has lower HP than most bosses, which can be exploited by using piercing secondary weapons, rendering this boss a Glass Cannon.
    • A 100% elemental weakness on any enemy in the main series, though you can only tell how specifically much an enemy resists or is weak to any element in the 4th and 5th games.
  • Weaponized Teleportation: In 4, Cosmic Monoliths can perform physical attacks by teleporting above a target and landing on them.
  • Weather of War: A new feature for EBF5. Each area of the game world will have several possible weather conditions that randomly cycle over time, with each one affecting battle conditions in a different way. These conditions range from obvious ones like rain, to weirder ones like "Cherry Blossom" and "Cursed Ground".
  • Weird Weather: In the fifth game, there's weather like 'Energy', 'Radiation' and 'Lava Flow' that are not weather at all.
  • When Trees Attack: "Stop pretending to be a foe, tree, you're just a tree." Also, the Laurelin and Telperion boss battles in the fifth game
    • All of the games have different types of bushes as basic foes (or advanced foes in the case of giant bushes), and "haunted tree" enemies that use dark and poison attacks. The fourth features Mighty Oak (a treant of sorts) as its first boss, and many flower enemies in the Jungle (including the massive Rafflesia boss).
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: EBF 2 & 3 have a summon called Meow Meow where a giant sword-wielding cat is summoned to attack the enemy. Meow Meow vanishes the next game. What makes this notable is that Meow Meow violates the World Building of EBF4, which stresses the fact that cats don't have arms or legs in this world. It's rather jarring that all the players make a big deal out of seeing cats with arms, legs, and tails despite the fact that they had a summon that was just that.
    • He doesn't appear to have legs on the world map, but when summoned in battle he has them.
  • A Winner Is You: In EBF5, if you collect all medals and access the last room in the Grand Gallery, you can find a hidden note saying: 'Congratumulations! You win the game! This is the end! Plz buy second copy!'. Lampshaded by one of the NPCs guarding the room, who admits its contents aren't that exciting.
  • Wingding Eyes: In the fourth game, Cactussa has pink Heart Symbols for eyes. Fifth game has them sometimes for player character's pictures when they are talking.
  • With a Friend and a Stranger: The party setup in EBF3. Matt and Natalie had been traveling by themselves for over two games, while Lance had joined the party at the end of the second game, generally being a bother to Natalie, the friend.
  • Wolfpack Boss: The Pyrohydra consists of three equally powerful dragon heads that count as separate targets.
  • Women Are Wiser: This was averted in EBF3, as Natalie and Lance alternated between being in the right while Matt was consistently an Idiot Hero. The trope was played straight in EBF4, as Natalie and Anna were much more down to earth and wise compared to their male counterparts.
  • World Building: EBF4 adds backstory and mythology to what was previously a mostly plotless RPG game.
  • World of Snark: Downplayed. Most NPCs are limited to Lampshade Hanging at best, but the playable cast all tend to snark. Especially noticeable in EBF4, where certain pieces of scenery provoke a different snarky line from every character. Take the wall of "warning" signs in the factory, for example:
    Lance: "Danger again, huh? I guess they're serious this time."
    Anna: "Judging by these inviting labels, this appears to be some sort of safe room."
    Matt: "I may not be too bright, but even I can tell there's something dangerous in there."
    Natalie: "Something tells me these warning signs aren't going to keep us out of there."
  • Wrap Around: One part of Lankyroot Jungle has this happen if you exit through any side except the bottom, which leads you back to the lava cave entrance. If you have the blue scroll and take the indicated paths, you will find the Lost Ruins, with chests guarded by high-level monsters.
  • Writing Around Trademarks:
    • In EBF3, Konata, Simon, Yoko, and Kamina all appear as NPCs, with a single letter strategically asterisked out of their names.
    • In EBF4, the characters will blatantly mention pop culture, but simply have an * in place of a single letter of the name of the work, such as "Y*utube". This especially gets ridiculous when copyrighted names are part of some of the equipment too.
  • Yellow Lightning, Blue Lightning: Most lightning in the games is yellow, except for Lance's Plasma spells, which are purple.
  • Yin-Yang Bomb:
    • Natalie uses both holy and dark spells.
    • Godcat also uses holy and dark, but this trope is best shown in Bullet Heaven, where she uses both at once. In EBF4, she's split between her dark and her light side, who only use spells from their element.
    • No Legs has also Dark and Holy moves in his default skillset. And God Cat as his exclusive limit breaks.
  • You Cannot Grasp the True Form: Of the Glitch's attacks, or even its name.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: In EBF4, you will not be able to retrieve the three crystals before they are stolen by the cats or stop Godcat's resurrection.


Alternative Title(s): Epic Battle Fantasy 4, Bullet Heaven, Epic Battle Fantasy 2, Epic Battle Fantasy 3, Adventure Story, Bullet Heaven 2

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