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Video Game / Fragile Hearts

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Fragile Hearts is a series of freeware parody RPGs, made in RPG Maker by SBester. It currently consists of two games, with a total of five planned out.

The first game begins with Fergus, a rather mediocre knight who accidentally kills the princess he’s supposed to be marrying. He instantly becomes a hunted man, but this soon becomes least of the kingdom’s problems as an Evil Overlord manages to break the spell containing him and return with an evil army. Fergus soon joins forces with Haddy, a young and unemployed witch, her formerly human, foul-mouthed talking cat Gulliver, and Midard, a once-mighty wizard now crippled by dementia. Together, they end up the kingdom’s only hope to defeating Evil Overlord.

The sequel, Fragile Hearts 2: Shattered Dreams, was released in 2013, a year after the original. In-universe, however, 3 years have passed, and some of the choices made in the original game are carried over into the new one. This time, the world is threatened by the potential rise of a Demon-King, who is due to be born after a naive angel Meera and cynical demon Bazur end up in bed together after a drunken night. Meanwhile, Haddy’s younger sister, Maddy, ends up the lone survivor of an assault at Witches Academy by a Cameltoe army intent to rid the world of magic users, and who are looking for a person chosen to defeat the Demon-King, purely so that they can lure the remainder of witches into their trap alongside him. Little do they know that the chosen one is Tobin, a young transgender person who’s been under their nose all along...


Both games are available in a single download here.

Fragile Hearts games provide examples of the following tropes:

  • A-Cup Angst: Parodied with Haddy. She’s typically fine on her own, but Gulliver continually makes jokes about it (and gets hit by Haddy in response.)
  • Amnesiac Hero: Midard is a more realistic example. Instead of losing his memory in an accident of some sort, he’s simply been getting old-age dementia.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: In Fragile Hearts 2, the party is always limited to 4 people, due to the default RPG Maker 2003 limitations.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Played straight in the opening of first game, where Lieutenants are (somewhat) stronger than Guards, and Captains are stronger than Lieutenants.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: Invoked with Episode Seven of the first game, which is titled: "Spoiler Alert, Bad Guy Wins the Day". The next episode title just says "Ignore that last title."
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  • Black Comedy: The game’s opening essentially plays child marriage and accidental child murder for laughs. The rest of the game, and the sequel, has plenty of jokes like that.
  • Bigger on the Inside: Quite a few buildings are like that, and Gulliver usually has a lot to say abou that.
  • Biting-the-Hand Humour: In the library, you can find a book called "RMN" (short for RPG Maker Network, the website on which the game is published.) Book describes it as "A wonderful little haven on the internet where game creators go to erase any small bit of confidence they may have had in their projects. Also, the best place to download such highly acclaimed titles as Legendary Legend, Tic Tac Toe the rm2k3 edition, Dragon Creed, The New Disciples, and lots of highly praised Vaporware. Seriously, though, don’t knock the vaporware. It’s likely cooler than you."
    • Later on, there’s the password to enter Mayor’s house in Orin. It’s also RMN, which apparently stands for Real Manly Nipples.
  • Book Dumb: Gulliver is very much one, and there’s a moment in Fragile Hearts 2 where you can examine the bookshelf in someone’s house containing classic novels. It then turns out that he thinks Moby-Dick is porn and that Gulliver's Travels is about him. Also, the only thing he remembers from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea is the giant squid.
  • But Thou Must!: When Zelda asks if you’re ready to depart into the cave to search for the Why-Caliber, you can answer "No" or "Yes". Zelda then replies "I’ll have you know that the answer I was looking for was "Yes."" if you refuse.
  • The Chosen One: Parodied very much in both games. You spend about half of Fragile Hearts searching for Clive, who is chosen to defeat the Evil Overlord. When you do find him, it turns out that he’s lost all of his limbs in a hunting accident, and so the role is reluctantly given to Fergus. At the end of the game, however, Clive does sort of finish off the evil overlord - he’s fired at him out of a cannon, killing both of them.
    • Before that, you’re told that the previous chosen one who defeated the evil overlord was a peanut butter-and-jelly sandwhich: he choked on it during a fight, allowing Midard to encase him in stone.
    • In Fragile Hearts 2, the new chosen one is Tobin, a rather shallow and egotistical person who is also transgender. He escapes his town after it turns out that the anti-magical army is after him – not because they believe in the prophecy (they don’t), but because they want to use him to lure in the remaining powerful witches, and thus deal with their magical problem.
      • At the end of the game, he might or might not actually end up defeating the new Demon-God before he reaches the height of his powers. if you fight him normally, then Tobin will approach Bazur sexually once he’s defeated, causing him to back away in horror and fall into the lava below. If you let Meera try to deal with him, however, then Bazur simply loses all of his Demon-God powers after Meera commits suicide out of unrequited love for him.
  • Conveniently an Orphan: Haddy’s and Maddy’s parents died from a jungle fever.
    • Similarly, the parents of Tobin in 2 died from accidentally eating poison mushrooms, leaving him alone to be raised by his Nan.
  • Cut-and-Paste Environments: A couple of rooms in the castle have practically the same layout. It’s lampshaded near the end when you’re storming the castle, and examining the bedside table will give you a message "You’re extremely glad this place has a different lay-out than the other rooms."
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Evil Overlord at the end of Fragile Hearts 1 doesn’t do much damage and his only skill is MP Steal, but he has a whole lot of health, resulting in a very protracted fight, especially if you didn’t accept Midard’s offer to sacrifice himself in order to weaken the Overlord before the battle.
    • Vam and Bazur in Fragile Hearts 2 are the same. The former is entirely devoid of skills, and his relatively high amount of health is his only defining characteristic. The latter does have Kill Stuff (small chance of insta-kill) and Darkness 3 Area of Effect spell later in battle. His health is so great, however, that there’ll still be about 10-15 minutes of chipping it away after he’s already run out of MP to cast anything.
  • Dark-Skinned Blonde: Invoked and discussed with the "Army" assembled by Zelda. As Haddy puts it "Even the black guy has blonde hair, for crying out loud!"
  • Dear Negative Reader: Played for laughs with Gulliver upon entering a shop, who first complains about it being much bigger on the inside, then says that "If there were some kind of an amateur builders network, you can be sure I’d write a very angry review about this very thing!"
    • Then, there was also a person called LWG (short for Little Wing Guy) in the Dream Sequence, who was one of the users who gave poor review to the demo version of the game (available here) and was apparently punished by being trapped in the reviewer’s circle. When Gulliver suggests changing his rating to 5/5, he replies "Is that why I’m here? I would rather die before that happens."
    • Tradition continues in Fragile Hearts 2, where there’s a book in the Witches Palace library called "Fragile Hearts Review". Examining it simply results in a comment from Maddy "This is entirely inaccurate. It’s less than 5 stars!"
  • Dem Bones: A typical skeleton enemy called Bones appears near the end of the first Fragile Hearts. Its stats are quite high, but it has no abilities and it gets beaten quite easily. The sequel has Starving Dudes in the opening, who can cast Slow and Blood & Bone reddish skeletons who can cast Weakness.
  • Developer's Room: Episode Seven of both games is split between the character-specific flashbacks and the “Development Hell” section, where you wander as Gulliver.
  • Disney Villain Death: Bazur dies in this way at the end of Fragile Hearts 2 if you fight him normally and don’t let Meera try to deal with him. He’ll get approached romantically by Tobin, and fall off into the lava while backing away in horror.
  • Don't Explain the Joke: Early in the first game, there’s a fireplace Fergus can examine, and the trope applies to the description in full. “You could start the fire and use it to cook meat, but you would rather eat your meat raw. You’re like one of those body builders who like to eat their eggs raw and stuff."
  • Double Entendre: Gulliver specialises in making these.
    • There’s a rare non-sexual one in the first game where a lone Cracker Soldier says "My brethren have fallen. Save me!" with Fergus replying "You first.", since he acts as a save point.
  • Dream Sequence: Parodied with the Episode Six "In which we get bored and watch something else". Most of it is Gulliver’s dream sequence, which occurs firstly in some crystal heaven (or, as he describes it, "Why do my dreams always look so vibrant and gay?"), before shifting to the Developer's Room.
  • Driven to Suicide: This can happen at the end of Fragile Hearts 2 to Meera, if you let her try to talk Bazur out of fighting. She’ll talk a bit more about her love for him, only to then say she realises it’s not meant to be, and jump off into the lava. This tragedy also purges Bazur of the dark power within him.
  • Easily Forgiven: The Queen of Cameltoe speaks normally to Fergus in Fragile Hearts 2, and doesn’t seem to recall that he accidentally killed her daughter just three years earlier.
  • Elemental Powers: Haddy can buy various elemental spells at the magic shops, or have them given by the conveniently waiting goddesses of certain element (the latter always elicits a sarcastic comment of some sort from Gulliver.) These are numbered in increasing order of power (i.e. Fire 1 < Fire 2) and are usually labelled with some sort of ironic comment in the description. I.e. Rock has ", Chris" in the description.
  • Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors: There’s a weak version of that, since many enemies appear to lack elemental vulnerabilities or resistances, and ones that do have them are far from obvious. For instance, you would expect the Shadow enemies to be vulnerable to light; in fact, they’re only vulnerable to Icicle spells. Similarly, the Evil Spirits and their upgraded versions are immune to Tide spells for some reason.
    • The fact that crabs, fish and other underwater enemies are immune to Tide spells is rather obvious. Their simultaneous immunity to Icicle spells is slightly harder to explain, but still makes sense. But why the hell do skeletons and zombie giants Deadbeats have those immunities?
  • Energy Absorption: In the first game, there’s an enemy called Wormy that loves to use MP Steal ability. Thieves can do the same, and it's also the only ability of the Final Boss.
    • Bazur in Fragile Hearts 2 can also use MP Steal, though he'll rarely need to.
  • Expy: King Arfur and his land of Cameltoe is a rather obvious parody of the Arthurian legend. He was helped to win the throne by a wizard named Midard, who hoped that he would bring an era of peace. Instead, he’s waged war after war in order to find that peace.
  • Fake Ultimate Mook: Deadbeats in the original game are large Undead Trolls, and yet they’re still defeated very easily.
  • Fictional Currency: Averted. The game literally uses dollars as its currency.
  • Flavor Text: There’s a lot of it when you try to interact with items, and most of it calls you silly for bothering to do so. In a library, for instance, interacting with a window gets you this: "You look out of the window to see that someone is flipping you off."
    • Sofa in the castle during the opening: "Now, now is the perfect time to be sitting around. Good job, no, GREAT job."
    • "If you think you’re going to happen upon items by examining these stupid decorations, you’re wrong."
    • In the Items Shop in Orin, when examining a bookshelf: "If you want to know, yes, it IS getting really annoying describing all this useless crap."
    • Beds in Fragile Hearts 2: "JUST GET ON WITH THE GAME ALREADY!" and "You’re not seriously gonna check every one of these beds, are you?" (These are copy-pasted several times along with other bed descriptions.)
    • Shelf in FH2: “You were expecting to find loot in here? This is all Square Enix’s fault.”
  • Giant Space Flea Out Of Nowhere: Played for laughs with in 2 when one of the opponents fought near the volcano is a guy with a large sword, described only as "Some Asshole".
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: In Fragile Hearts 2, Maddy’s attempt to summon a fire demon to rescue her town from soldiers currently holding them captive ends up incinerating all of the townsfolk, while leaving the soldiers completely unharmed.
  • Healing Checkpoint: Zig-zagged. Usually, checkpoints don’t heal, and Fergus actually gets into an argument with "Cracker" who acts as a checkpoint, about it. Very rarely, they do heal and restore the party, but it happens rather unpredictably.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: At the end of the first game, Midard will offer to sacrifice himself in order to weaken the Evil Overlord. You can choose to ignore the offer or let him go through with it, and the choice is carried over into the sequel.
    • Grand Witch Zelda is mortally wounded by Evil Overlord when you arrive, and she offers to transfer her powers to Haddy. If you choose to accept, her death will be treated as a sacrifice, and a palace will be built in her honor.
    • Honor Before Reason: Vam in Fragile Hearts 2 fights Fergus and others alone, in spite of having a huge army right behind him.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: The battle against Bounty Hunter in FH2 will be lost even if you had actually won it.
  • Hypocritical Humor: In Fragile Hearts 2, a girl from the Academy complains that her sister is "a total racist all the time. She’s almost as bad as that black guy from back home."
  • Idiot Hero: Fergus in the first game is most certainly one, having been forced on the run through accidentally decapitating a princess and making lots of other mistakes throughout. In the sequel, he gets a bit wiser and more experienced, but the Idiot Ball gets passed over to Haddy's younger, Book Dumb sister Maddy, who is so poor at spell-casting she manages to completely miss with her fire demon summoning and incinerate all the people she was intending to rescue, instead of the enemy soldiers standing right next to them.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: Averted in the first game, which usually places actual vial sprites for potions and envelope sprites for stat upgrades, although their placement is often inexplicable. Played straight in the second game, however.
  • Informed Equipment: Subverted with Fergus, as he’ll carry the cheap sword in his hand once he gets it, and then carry a shield once he picks it up. These changes are scripted, however, and don’t represent what he’s actually wearing: you can remove a shield in favour of a two-hander afterwards, yet his sprite will still remain the same.
  • Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: Played straight in the castle each time you visit it: the keys you collect will unlock any currently locked door, and then disappear from the inventory.
  • The Internet Is for Porn: In Fragile Hearts 2, a witch says she wants to invent a really addictive information tool for anything and everything, but mostly for porn.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Gulliver loves doing that to point out game’s flaws. Upon entering the item shop for the first time, he complains about how the building is Bigger Onthe Inside, and that it makes him feel like he’s in an old JRPG.
  • Life Drain: Bazur in Fragile Hearts 2 can perform HP Steal, though it never really restores much health for him.
  • Limit Break: Inverted for Maddy in Fragile Hearts 2. Having full health allows her to perform double attacks. During boss fights, she’ll deal more damage in this manner than by employing her supposedly unique summoning abilities.
  • Fergus, I’m Your Mother: Happens early on, when the "Hooded Man" Fergus is fighting turns out to be his mother.
  • Miles Gloriosus: Fergus is sort-of one, who has accomplished much less than the other two soldiers in the opening, yet still brags a whole lot. The other two play along with it once they see the princess, though, since neither actually wants to marry her.
  • Mirror Match: Downplayed with the battles against Mimics in the Secret Tunnel. They look the same as your characters, but they don’t have the same skills. Instead, all of them can cast Confuse, and that’s it.
  • Money Spider: Even enemies like worms, plants and bugs will almost always drop a small amount of dollars with them. Elite enemies like Deadbeats (i.e. zombie giants) will drop around 1500 $ each.
  • No "Arc" in "Archery": Played straight in Fragile Hearts 2 with Maddy’s bow attacks.
  • No Fourth Wall: There are plenty of characters who like to outright break it, most notably Gulliver. At one point, Fergus even says: "Just what we need, another person who thinks life is nothing but a game!"
  • OffWithHerHead: Fergus accidentally decapitates the princess in the prologue.
  • Optional Stealth: There are no random encounters, only patrolling enemies, and the areas they’re in are typically quite large and provide plenty of room for manoeuvre.
  • Optional Sexual Encounter: Parodied when you can ask the Item Shop owner in Orin "Do you sell condoms?" When he says yes, Fergus breaks the fourth wall and says you've found a secret sexual encounter between him and Haddy, only to get hit painfully by her and mocked by Gulliver.
  • Palette Swap: Lieutenants are just Guards with green pants instead of purple and who also wear purple shirts. Captains have lime-green pants and light-blue shirts.
  • Prison Rape: When Maddy and Gulliver are put in prison in Fragile Hearts 2, she complains about it, only for Gulliver to say "At least we haven’t been raped yet."
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Exaggerated in both games.
    • Lampshaded in FH2 when Vam says "Fergus… and an unlikely band of misfits…" to which Gulliver replies with "I smell a franchise."
  • Random Encounters: Averted. All of the enemies patrol normally on the area maps (and are completely absent from the World Map), and can often be avoided.
  • Rare Candy: Two types. There are the typical Attack, Defence, etc. Increases. Then there are also the IN Stat + 1, AT Stat + 1, etc. , which also permanently increase a given stat by one, but they can only be used in battle.
  • Rose-Haired Sweetie: Haddy is typically one. When she’s not dealing with Gulliver, or getting job rejections, anyways.
  • Sweet Polly Oliver: The so-called "Hooded Man" turns out to be the mother of Fergus.
  • Straw Misogynist: Gulliver is one, often making sexist jokes and even once replying to a girl saying how lucky she was to be born in a city of witches with "Not quite lucky enough to be born a man, though, huh?" He was turned into a cat by Haddy for a reason.
  • Self-Deprecation: You can find a book titled This Library, and reading it continues the sentence: "was originally meant to have book pictures with text on them, but resizing didn’t work out, so now it’s plain text. Lame, huh?"
    • That’s nothing in comparison to the "SBester’s Biography" book. It describes the creator of the game as "The genius creator behind such titles as Eden Legacy, Eden Legacy II, Eden Legacy III, Eden Legacy Deluxe and Trilogy Editions, and the upcoming Eden Legacy IV with Amerk. Obviously, that means he’s known for his ingenuity and diversity. While he had hoped to live out his days performing in the artistic porn productions, his oversensitive nature led to him creating low-budget RPGs instead."
      • FH 2 contains "SBester’s Biography Part II", again full of similar self-deprecation.
    • Then, there’s more of it in the Developer's Room segment of both games.
  • Shout-Out: I’m much too old for this shit.
  • Take That!: The descriptions of a lot of items like to do that. The description on a bronze shield, for instance, states that "you aren’t good enough for gold or silver."
    • Then, in Fragile Hearts 2, you can meet a girl called "Smart Cookie" in the Witches Academy, who says that "I read a book called Battle Royale last week. It was great! I think I’m going to re-write it with a female lead, make the characters white, and call it “The Hunger Games."
  • Trauma Inn: Played straight at the end of the first game.
  • Twin Threesome Fantasy: The second game has a store in a cleaned-up Prostitown run by triplets, which elicits a comment of this kind of from Gulliver.
  • Video Game Stealing: Averted. When you examine merchant’s goods as Haddy, you get a response of "You can’t steal this crap, what do you think this is, Skyrim?"
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Other characters frequently call Fergus out on his accidental murder of Senna.
    • In Fragile Hearts 2, Bazur, a demon, and a random bounty hunter, do it to Meera, an angel of all people,. When Bazur dismisses "There’s nothing lower than a bounty hunter!" she replies with "Except for the Jews...". Not only does Bazur say "Aren’t angels supposed to be nice to all people?", but even the Bounty Hunter capturing the two also calls her out.
    • Then, the development hell section for Fragile Hearts 2 has "Old Guy 2" in the cast room. In his own words: "If you allowed Midard to live in FH1, you’ll see me around. If you allowed him to die, then @#%$ YOU!"
  • Who Writes This Crap?!: Fragile Hearts 2 has a moment where a random citizen named Harold can be asked about a chosen one, whereas he lists that the chosen one was a Cameltoe knight who accidentally decapitated a princess, but that the real chosen one was a guy with no limbs, and a chosen one before that was a sandwich. When Meera says that those myths are quite odd, he replies that only a psycho would come up with all of that.
  • World Limited to the Plot: A library book called History of the World makes fun of it, saying that "Not much is currently known about the world we’re living in. The general assumption is that it began when the evil overlord first appeared, as that is as far back as our records reach."
  • You All Look Familiar: Played for laughs with the save points, which all appear like anthropomorphised crackers. Some of them get offended when described as that, because they’re Sliced Breads, and one got offended because Fergus accidentally used "you all" in a conversation.
  • You Bastard!: A description for Ivory Armor states that "An elephant died for you to have this."
    • The joke is continued in the sequel, where description for the Titanium Armor states "Nick Faldonote  died for you to have this."
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Played straight with a couple of people. The Queen's portrait in Fragile Hearts 1, though, states that "If you think that she has blue hair, there's something wrong with you!" when examined.


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