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Torren is a region that has long been rife with several lethal cults. Each one of them worships a different legendary Pokémon, and each one has kidnapped, tortured, and even killed to reach their mysterious goals. Still, hope yet resides in Torren's beloved protector, the Augur, who is the only one able to keep the cults at bay.

One day, the Augur disappears without a trace. In his place, a charismatic and kind man by the name of Jaern assumes the title of the Second Augur. While he is widely trusted by the people, five cults remain wreaking havoc and bloodshed.

Fast forward one year later. You wake up imprisoned in the lair of the Cult of Darkrai.

Why?

You do not know. They erased your memories.

Insurgence is an RPG Maker game by thesuzerain, creator of Pokémon Zeta and Omicron. The game introduces Delta Pokémon, special Pokémon with completely different typings you find in-game.

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This game contains examples of:

  • 100% Completion: Catching every Pokémon in the game, including all the Delta Pokémon and MISSINGNO., allows the player to catch a brand new Pokémon named UFI.
  • 15 Puzzle: The Meloetta puzzles.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Any Pokémon, especially ComMons, that gets a new Mega Evolution in this game, like the Johto starters, Eevee, Sudowoodo, Zebstrika, Stunfisk...
    • Giratina, yes, Giratina counts in this game. In canon, it was "merely" a Legendary dragon and part of the Creation Trio under the domain of its Trio Master Arceus. Here, it was stated to all but be Arceus's equal, someone Arceus defeated to become the creator of this world, and even gets a Primal Form with an ability that makes it ALL types at once.
    • Both Arceus and Regigigas get Primal Forms.
  • A Day in the Limelight: This game predominantly features several of the "Secret Pokémon" as being central to the plot. Right at the start, this includes Darkrai and Mew, who rarely get any screentime in the main Pokémon games.
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  • The Ace: Nora is treated as this early on, as she's introduced as a prodigy of the Pokémon Trainer School who's never lost a match before. She's obviously an Expy of the more serious rivals in the Pokémon series, like Blue and Hugh.
  • Aesop Amnesia: While The First Augur did break up over half of the region's cults, he also spared punishment to any members who begged for forgiveness. As a result, it's pointed out that these former cultists learned nothing and just turned around and joined a new cult later on.
  • Afraid of Needles: Damian is afraid of needles. Nora even calls out the ridiculousness of being afraid of needles when they deal with murderous cultists every day.
  • Amnesiac Hero: The protagonist, due to having his/her memories drained by Gengar's Dream Eater by the Cult of Darkrai for the last year.
  • Amplifier Artifact: The Crystal that Jaern possesses, claiming that it has limitless energy. He uses it to amplify Rayquaza's power. It's later revealed that the Crystal was an artifact created by Arceus and guarded by an Ancient Order of Protectors, and even when broken into pieces, each piece has enough power for Arceus, Giratina and Regigigas to become Primal.
  • Ancient Order of Protectors: The Timeless, trainers taken from across time and space by Arceus and granted immortality to serve as protectors of Arceus's Crystal, an artifact of limitless power.
  • Animalistic Abomination: Delta Pokémon. Marvels of modern science, they have different typings than ordinary members of their species, and learn an entirely different set of moves. Naturally, they sport heavily modified appearances as well.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Being a fan game, many of these features have been added, including an auto-run feature, quicksaving, and in general time-consuming aspects of the original game (like text scrolling and healing at a Pokémon Center) have been reduced.
    • One of the biggest features to be added were making HMs much easier to use, without the need of turning a party member into an "HM Slave". These include items that perform the functions of an HM (Flashlight that acts like Flash, Instant-Lapras that works like Surf, although you still can get Surf as a move), making it so multiple moves can be used in place of an HM (any fighting move can be used as Rock Smash, while several moves, like Bulldoze and Steamroll, can be used as Strength), and the addition of the Pika-Taxi Service, which takes the place of Fly (although the game does still give the player Fly, in case they would prefer using that instead).
    • Secret Bases house a variety of features and can be acquired before you reach the second Gym. While you have to purchase all the various functions, there are a number of useful ones such as a level trainer who can scale with the number of Gym badges you possess (and uses self-defeating Audino for easy EXP, albeit one must pay a fee to fight him), an EV trainer, an EV resetter in case you make a mistake distributing effort values, and a NPC who can (with the use of an IV Stone) max out Individual Values of a Pokémon.
    • With a little investment, it becomes easy to keep up with the game's difficulty and helps ensure that no Pokémon you capture remains useless if it starts out less than ideal.
  • Anti-Villain:
    • Jaern acts like this; he's a cult leader, but he honestly wants to use the power of a legendary Pokémon to punish and kill those who break the law, as opposed to The First Augur, who would spare anyone who begged for his forgiveness, just for them to turn around and join a new cult. Although he refers to himself as an Anti-Hero:
    Jaern: I'm the antihero, Persephone. The chaotic good character. I'll do whatever I need to to save the world.
    • Reukra also qualifies. He explains that he doesn't consider "Perfection" to be a cult since they don't worship any legendary Pokémon, nor do they want to take over the world; they just want to create or discover the "Perfect Pokémon". He even expresses regret over the failures of the Delta Pokémon he helped create, wanting them to find trainers to take care of them, since he believes all Pokémon deserve the chance to be loved and go on an adventure. Later subverted as he eventually reveals that he only pretended to care about the Delta Starters as part of a Batman Gambit to obtain data on Mega Evolution, and even more subverted by the time you gain access to his labs.
  • Applied Phlebotinum: The First Augur's crystal, and after it gets smashed, the crystal shards. Jaern even describes it as a limitless power source, with more energy than 100 suns.
  • Arc Welding: While not crucial to the plot, Torren was apparently the region that was at war with the Kalos region 3,000 years ago that King AZ used the Ultimate Weapon on. As a more recent arc weld, Torren was also the region fighting Kanto in the war Lt. Surge offhandedly mentioned before his gym battle.
  • Artificial Brilliance: The AI in this game has been programmed very well and is not opposed to using tricks that people use on a tournament level, including a smart selection of bred and TM moves, and a great use of held items that can seriously make up for normal exploitable weaknesses (for example, Anastasia in the Kepler Gym uses three Air Balloons to protect three of her Pokémon who would normally have an Achilles' Heel to Ground-Type moves).
  • Author Appeal: It's pretty obvious the creator is a big fan of certain Pokemons:
    • Flygon, seeing as Flygon gets two custom Signature Attacks (Drakon Voice and Ancient Roar), a new Mega Evolution, and an Armored Form. Flygon is also the strongest (non-legendary) Pokémon used by Nora. Reukra even uses a Mega Flygon during his champion fight.
    • Shadow Mewtwo, a Pokemon only appeared in Pokken Tournament, made an extensive appearance as a Pokemon used by Champion Reukra and got a Mega Evolution.
    • Spiritomb. It has a Mega Evolution and has a new Hidden Ability as a New Moon setter, an ability previously exclusive to Mega Delta Charizard. What makes this an Author Appeal is that this weather condition weakens Fairy type moves - the only type that is super effective against Spiritomb.
    • Bisharp. The Pokemon is given a Delta form as well as a Mega Evolution for both its regular and Delta form.
    • Metagross. Its owner Steven is one of the Endless Boss Fight, it has two Delta forms, both of which come with Mega Evolutions, and one of its Delta forms is used by Taen for his final fight. And it also has an entire new type exclusively created for one of its Mega Evolutions.
    • Sunflora. It has a Mega Evolution for both of its genders (something which the main game doesn't really put emphasis on), a Delta form that also has a Mega Evolution, and is used extensively by Gail.
    • Typhlosion. While all three Johto starters get Mega Evolutions for their final forms, Typhlosion is the only one that is given a Delta form... which itself gets its own new Mega Evolution.
  • Bare Your Midriff: Audrey's uniform leaves some of her stomach exposed.
  • Basilisk and Cockatrice: The theme of Delta Pidgey and its evolutionary line. You even encounter it in a temple full of strangely human statues.
  • Batman Gambit: Audrey is revealed to have pulled this when she revealed she's the one who donated the fake Blue Orb to the Miara Town museum, not only expecting people to underestimate the Abyssal Cult since everyone would assume they knew where the Blue Orb was, but also correctly assuming it would be the perfect place for the museum curators to hide the Tidal Bell, which was what she was really after.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: For all his big talk and control over the region, Jaern ultimately boils down to this; once people see Nyx defeat him and reveal that he's a cult leader, his popularity implodes upon itself and he is presumably lynched. In fact, he's so unimportant that Nyx didn't even consider him in her plans (not that it mattered much)!
  • Big Damn Heroes: At one point you save a baby Riolu from getting kidnapped by a cult along with Nora. Subverted in that they actually wanted to bait its Mega Lucario mother into appearing. Fortunately, the Lucario has no trouble in eliminating them.
    • Played Straight when you have to save Damian from the Abyssal Cult.
    • Played with and subverted again when the player and Damian think they are saving The Second Augur, Jaern, from the Sky Cultists, only to discover Jaern is the leader of said cult.
  • Bilingual Bonus: If the player knows Latin, several of the spells used can be understood. It also allows the player a first glimpse at Jaern not being as kind as he presents himself to be, since he lies to Damian about not having killed the two cultists; the spell he used translates to Bonds of Death.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: The Second Augur, Jaern, who has manipulated the region of Torren to believe he's a beloved savior, when he's actually the leader of the Sky Cult planning to use the power of Rayquaza to take over the world.
  • Black Market: There's one under Helios City, which offers such services as a Custom Move Tutor, a Witch Doctor who can evolve Pokémon that normally need to be traded to evolve, and Pokémon battles to the death (that last one the player will not partake in).
  • "Blackmail" Is Such an Ugly Word: When accused of mind control, Zenith says he prefers the term "mind optimization".
  • Body Horror: After Malde is injected with the Pokérus, the faint Deoxys DNA in his body reacts to it, turning him into a grotesque Half-Human/Deoxys Hybrid. Later, Malde infects Damian with the same half-hybrid affliction, with plans to do the same to the rest of the world.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall:
    • As part of Essentials' default responses in the walking Pokémon feature, one of the responses from talking to the partner Pokémon is "...loves this tune so much that it's singing it", referring to the game's current background music.
    • Delta Aipom's back sprite makes it look like it's squishing its face up against the screen and staring at the player.
  • Bus Crash: According to a book, Steven Stone came to Torren to help against the cults, but he died in a freak accident where his Keystone got switched with his Metagross's Metagrossite, which caused Steven to Mega-Evolve. He died shortly after, though he was able to take down some cultists with him. However, it might have been a case of Faking the Dead for him to join the Timeless, because that's definitely not how Keystone and Mega Stone works.
  • Butt-Monkey: Rival Damian starts as this, being put down harshly by his stepmother and rudely ignored and dismissed by the Trainer School teacher. Becomes a Zig Zagged Trope a little later when the Abyssal Cult kidnaps him in Vipik City... and Shaymin shows up to save him, causing the cultists to have a major Oh, Crap! moment and flee. Even after this, though, he doesn't get that much in the way of respect.
  • Call-Back:
    • Several books you read in people's houses and the Utira Library speak of a King Vesryn of ages past.
    • Trapping someone in the Dream Realm of another sleeping individual and then getting a Pokémon to use Dream Eater on that sleeper will erase that someone from existence, no matter how immortal they are. Adam remembers how Persephone and Jaern used that tactic on him when he was protected by Arceus's Crystal, and when his son gets ahold of Darkrai, he threatens the mutated Malde with the same fate if he doesn't surrender.
  • The Chosen One: There is a prophecy in which a Trainer aided by a Pixie Pokémon is destined to save Torren. Three people fit this criteria — you, who is aided by Mew, Nora, who trains a Celebi, and Damian, who Shaymin chooses later on. At the Fiery Caverns, an Infernal cultist confirms that the rain-themed gym leader, Calreath, was also chosen by a mythical Pokémon which is later revealed to be Manaphy. And then there's Vesyrn, one of the Timeless who was chosen by Victini.
    • Upon proving to the Timeless how strong you have become by defeating them, the player would then follow in Adam's footsteps and be named the Third Augur.
  • Companion Cube: Orion spends a lot of time talking with his best friend, a white rock. Subverted when the rock turns out to be the Light Stone sealing Reshiram.
  • Creator Cameo: Head developer thesuzerain appears as a member of the Timeless.
  • Dark Is Evil: The Cult of Darkrai, who use mostly Ghost and Dark types. This is in contrast to the Pokémon they worship, which doesn't want domination or sacrifices.
  • Dark Is Not Evil:
    • Diana. She uses Psychic and Ghost types and her sister is a cult leader, but she's not a bad person.
    • The final gym leader, the player's father, Adam, who uses a team of Dark-types and is the First Augur.
  • Dark Messiah:
    • Jaern, The Second Augur. While he's the leader of the Sky Cult, he also acts like the savior of Torren, and forces the citizens (even children) to pay him tributes in the form of gifts and build statues in their towns in his honor. That, and he truly believes he's saving the world despite planning on using Rayquaza to kill anyone who breaks the law (at his discretion).
    • The Oracle claims The Chosen One of prophecy is basically this. Everyone assumes that he is destined to save Torren, but in a case of a Prophecy Twist, he's only destined to abolish the cults of Torren, as in plural. In the end, he will join the last remaining cult and turn on Torren. Subverted in that the player ends up taking out ALL the cults and that the prophecy by the Oracle was all just a stage act.
  • Darker and Edgier: This game makes no hesitation showing just how ruthless the cults are. For example, in the "dark mode", before you can even get to the first town, you get to watch Persephone, leader of the Cult of Darkrai, sacrifice one of her members to make Darkrai appear. She then kills two more people for daring to suggest to try it again when Darkrai leaves. In fact, the creators actually included a Lighter and Softer mode at the request of fans, basically keeping the plot the same but toning down the violence and removing any in-game deaths. However, they eventually confirmed to be planning on removing the said mode, since it's heavily incomplete, and its whole purpose for being implemented was Pandering to the Base.
  • Disappeared Dad: Like with the player's mother, the player's father is nowhere to be seen. Ultimately subverted when the last Gym Leader, Adam (who is also the First Augur) reveals his identity as the player's father.
  • Disc-One Nuke:
    • You can buy a Secret Base before 2nd Badge. It includes a Friend Safari, and you can enter someone's Safari to get powerful Pokémon early.
    • You're able to get a Level 25 Delta Grimer (which is Ground-type) before you fight Orion, who uses Fire-types up to Level 25. Plus Delta Grimer can have the ability Sap Sipper, making it immune to Grass attacks.
    • You can get a Delta Munchlax via Mystery Gift right at the start of the game after you get your starter. Delta Munchlax/Snorlax isn't incredibly powerful on its own, but the one you get from the Mystery Gift has all six IVs maxed out, meaning its stats will grow that much faster.
  • Does Not Like Shoes:
    • Audrey's uniform does not include shoes.
    • In later versions of the game, the player character starts off like this and can remain this way if you don't bother with character customization. They'll even travel through swamps, junk yards, volcanic and snow fields like this.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: The leader of the Infernal Cult is Zachary the Utira Town librarian, actually the cult leader Zenith in disguise.
  • Double Meaning: The Suntouched Gym; all the trainers at this gym use sunlight-based Pokémon, but also the gym leader Orion talks to a rock and everyone believes him to be not all there, such as someone with heatstroke (literally been sun-touched).
  • Draco Lich: The Delta Charmander line, especially Delta Charizard, being skeletal versions of the original Charmander line. Fittingly, their type is Dragon/Ghost.
  • The Dreaded: Any of the Cult Leaders count: case in point, when Audrey was approached by the security guard in the Miara Town museum, he made it clear he wasn't afraid of some Abyssal Cult grunt... then she revealed she was the Abyssal Cult Leader, and the guard very quickly stepped out of her way.
  • Dropped a Bridge on Him: Calreath was unexpectedly dropped to the lava via trap door in the Infernal Cult base as the player is about to battle Zenith for the last time. After the player escaped, Calreath was simply said to be missing, and there was no further mention of him.
  • Everyone Went to School Together: Literal example, in that Pokémon Professor Sylvan, Sonata Gym Leader Harmony, Kepler Gym Leader Anastasia, and Perfection Cult leader and League Champion Reukra all knew each other in university.
  • Evil All Along: Jaern. He's the leader of the Sky Cult and the 1.0 patch final boss. He orchestrated much of the game's current events.
  • Evolving Title Screen: The Pokémon featured in the title screen changes based on what point in the story the current saved game is in. It starts with Mew, but later changes to feature Celebi, Shaymin, Lugia... basically whatever Legendary is currently important to the immediate plot.
  • Expy: The Abyssal and Infernal cults are pretty much Team Aqua and Magma with a different name. In fact, Audrey, the leader of the Abyssal cult, is Archie's granddaughter.
  • Failed Attempt at Drama: Both times you face London of the Elite Four, he delivers a dramatic statement in preparation for battle... and then comments that he needs to rewrite his lines.
  • Fauxshadow: During the cutscene that plays after defeating Jaern for the first time, one of the people seen picking up a third of the Augur's crystal is Reukra, leader of the Perfection Cult, which will probably make the player assume there will be a confrontation with Perfection over the crystal shard. Nope. A Perfection Scientist defects to the Infernal Cult and steals the crystal shard, resulting in you fighting Zenith to retrieve it; in fact, Reukra even cooperates with you to help get to the Infernal Base!
  • Felony Misdemeanor: Custom Moves are apparently a big crime in Torren, and so the Custom Move Tutor has to set up shop in the Black Market, and will only make a single custom move for the player at a time (and said move will always be a physical attack with 70 power, although it can be any type the player chooses).
  • Fission Mailed: Asking the Human Calculator in Gaea Town to Divide by Zero causes the game to crash... while also unlocking the area known as NODATA where you can catch MISSINGNO.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Even though the player now has access to Hoopa's Hyperspace Hole and can transition in and out of his mindscape where his father Adam is sealed, no attempt or suggestion is mentioned of getting him back out.
  • Gang of Hats: Each of the five cults has a distinct focus. Abyssal uses Water and Poison-typed mons, Infernal uses Fire and Rock, Darkrai uses Dark and Ghost, and Sky uses Dragon and Flying. Perfection makes use of Mega Evolution, armor, and legendaries.
  • Ghostly Animals: Several Pokemon lines which don't normally fall into this trope become these thanks to the existence of their delta variants:
    • The cat-like Purrloin line becomes a Ghost/Fairy type.
    • The monkey-like Aipom line becomes Ghost/Normal.
    • The fish-like Feebas and serpentine Milotic becomes pure Ghost type.
    • The anglerfish-like Chinchou line becomes Ghost/Fire type.
  • Gilligan Cut: When in a Flashback, the Timeless decide to give Adam Arceus's Crystal and make him the First Augur.
    Adam: I won't let you down, guys. I won't lose!
    (Flashback ends)
    Adam: I lost.
  • Go Mad from the Isolation: What everyone in Suntouched City thinks has happened to the gym's leader, Orion, since he spends all his time talking to a rock, but it turns out this is an Averted Trope, as the white rock is really the Light Stone, Reshiram in stone form.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Nyx, the leader of a group of cultists from the Distortion World that helped create the Infernal Cult, which in turn sparked many other cults. She intends to use the Crystal and Giratina to rewrite reality.
  • Have We Met?: Several times throughout the story, random NPCs may comment that the player character looks familiar. Turns out that's because the player character is the First Augur's child.
  • Heads I Win, Tails You Lose: The Abyssal Cultist Leader Audrey pulls this on the protagonist after she captures Lugia, even saying outright even if the player beats her, she won't release Lugia and she'll still continue with her plans, but if the player loses, then they lose everything.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard:
    • Audrey suffers her Disney Death by the very same Kyogre that she was trying to use to Take Over the World, having lost control of it after her shard of the Augur's crystal was taken from her. Averted in the light mode, where she's only taken away by Damian.
    • Persephone ordering Darkrai to trap you, Malde, and Damian in the Dream Realm. Darkrai traps her and her cultists as well, and while you escape in relatively short order and Malde and Damian also make it out, Persephone herself is still there by the end of the game.
  • Honor Before Reason: As most of the cults worship their respective Legendary Pokémon like a deity, they refuse to just try and capture them and instead beseech them to join their causes, normally with disastrous results. Taen with the "Perfection" Cult actually calls the other cults out on this.
  • Human Sacrifice: The Cult of Darkrai does this at the beginning of the game in the dark mode to summon Darkrai itself. And the Sky Cult does this later on to summon Rayquaza, it's insinuated the other cults may be involved in this sort of summoning as well.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The Utira Library is filled with dozens of books with titles that are basically really corny puns of famous real-world novels with Pokémon names added into them.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: Taen, Reukra's number two and the only other seen Perfection cultist, does most of the work for the cult.
  • I Have Your Wife:
    • Persephone tries to get Darkrai to trap you in the Dream Realm by holding the Poké-ball containing its partner Cresselia hostage, and threatening to break the capture mechanism to seal Cresselia away forever. Darkrai responds, but it gets the last laugh on Persephone by trapping her and her cultists in the Dream Realm too.
    • This is how Persephone and Jaern beat Adam, the First Augur, the first time. Arceus's Crystal made him immortal and unkillable, but they eventually beat him by holding his family hostage.
  • I Know Your True Name: In order to fuse Reshiram, Zekrom, and Kyurem back into the Original Dragon, you need to know its True Name. Taen was not aware of this fact, and while reading from the summoning scroll, actually made the mistake of thinking the dragon's name was, in fact, "Namehere" (as in [Name Here]). Nora (and later Taen himself) eventually figure out that the original dragon's name was simply 'Kyurem' and Taen comes dangerously close to succeeding.
  • Idiot Ball: Damian's purpose as The Rival (along with Nora) seems to take firm hold of this ball to move the plot forward. He loudly talks about the fact Mew is following the protagonist, which gets him kidnapped by the Abyssal Cult, and later he bursts into a hospital room shouting, spooking the half-Deoxys Malde into rushing him and infecting him with the Deoxys-virus.
  • Insurmountable Waist-Height Fence: Taken to an illogical extreme here, as there are hazards blocking the player's advancement like discarded magazines, bottles, and paper balls. Insurmountable Ankle-Height Fence?
  • Jerkass: Bar a few exceptions, all the trainers in Victory Road are antagonistic and bitter whenever you battle them.
  • Lampshade Hanging: The creators of this game love to poke holes into everything that doesn't make sense from the main games:
    • One girl basically calls bullshit on many of the infamous Pokédex entries, the one she specifically cites being that Magcargo's body is supposedly as hot as the surface of the sun.
    • Someone else points out how ludicrous it seems that every single criminal organization in the world is defeated by a 10 year old. Once or twice, maybe, but every single one?! Reukra uses this as his reason for leaving Torren and to find a region to cause trouble in without this happening.
    • You can find a man who questions how everyone can remain ignorant to what really goes on in the Pokémon Daycare that causes two Pokémon to suddenly make an egg just by 'getting along'.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Towards the climax of the game, it turns out that Jaern's hold over the region isn't as strong as everyone thought. He held onto his rule mainly through propaganda; thus, once people watch him get defeated by Nyx and realize he's lying about his battling prowess, his public image rapidly collapses and he presumably is either lynched or flees the region.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father:
    • After the player defeats Audrey in her lair, it is revealed that she is Damian's biological mother who gave him up to pursue her cult's goals.
    • When the player makes it to the eighth gym, it's revealed that the gym leader Adam is the player's father and the First Augur.
  • Lunacy: Inverted with the new weather condition, New Moon, which blots out the light of the moon and casts a shadow over the field, empowering Ghost and Dark-type moves and weakening Fairy-type moves.
  • Magikarp Power: Eevee in this game becomes very powerful if you choose not to evolve it until you reach Helios City, although it will struggle to keep up with the rest of your team until then. Once there, you can teach it moves that it wouldn't normally learn as an Eevee, which allow it to transform into various Eeveelutions when it Mega Evolves in battle.
  • Mama Bear: Mega Marowak gains the Ghost-type and the ability Parental Bond by joining forces with the vengeful spirit of its deceased mother.
  • Mechanically Unusual Class: Perfection is much different from the other cults. They don't specialize in a single type, or even worship a single Pokémon. Plus, the leader Reukra has their assistant, Taen do most of the fighting.
  • Missing Mom: In stark contrast to other Pokémon games, there is no hint or mention of the player's mother whatsoever. It is commonly assumed she is dead.
  • Mundane Solution: While other cults perform human sacrifices to summon Legendary Pokémon and beg them to join their cause, Taen and the "Perfection" Cult just use the simple solution of catching the Legendaries they find useful with Master Balls.
  • The Nameless: The protagonist apparently has no official name.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero:
    • The First Augur, Adam, ran into the Timeless via Cynthia and convinced them to use the power of Arceus's Crystal they'd been guarding to expel all the cults from the Torren Region. While he did and became a hero, the cults reconsolidated and eventually Jaern and Persephone defeated him, putting the crystal into Jaern's hands.
    • Gail summons Zygarde to help stop Taen summon the Original Dragon (Kyurem), but it transforms into its Perfect form and Gail loses control of it, forcing you to step in and stop Zygarde (defeat or capture) before it hurts Orion's Reshiram friend.
  • Non-Indicative Name: Delta Pokémon all retain their base species' names, but some of them have their types and appearances flipped right around, giving them wildly contradictory names and looks. For example, the Delta Magmortar line and their magma-based source names, now have Water/Steel-typings and look like armored divers, and the Delta Electivire line, which now resemble stone gargoyles, have no reference to electricity whatsoever.
  • No-Sell: Some of the new Mega Evolutions get brand new Abilities that let them negate certain types. Mega Gothitelle has Ethereal Shroud, which gives it Ghost-type resistances and immunities, and Mega Magcargo gets Vaporization, which negates damage from Water-type moves and damages Water-type Pokémon every turn when in effect.
    • Primal Giratina's Ability, Omnitype, makes it ALL Pokémon types at once, giving it eight type immunities, but Primal Arceus counters that with its own Ability, Ancient Presence, which makes its attacks ignore all type-based damage multipliers except STAB, including the x0 multiplier of type immunities. Possibly an in-story reason for why Giratina is said to be as strong as Arceus, but Arceus managed to beat it and become the world's creator.
  • No Ontological Inertia: Averted. Additionally, defeating Nyx doesn't result in her immediate defeat; her summoning of Giratina still happens, forcing you to either capture or defeat it.
  • Obvious Beta: Much downplayed compared to its predecessor, even though it still has some of this trope in common, such as stock Essentials music (but with an actual OST alongside this time), and stationary/legendary Pokémon being Permanently Missable Content. note  The light mode is especially an example of this trope, since there are still lots of deaths and other dark scenes described, especially as the story progresses. Even worse is that it's in the options menu rather than being a permanent choice. Probably the most broken part of this game is the battle frontier, as lampshaded by a guard next to the entrance.
  • Our Hydras Are Different: Hydreigon was already this in canon, but Mega Hydreigon takes it Up to Eleven, with its new Lernean Ability. Damaging it will cause it to grow more heads, each delivering its own mini-attack whenever it makes an attack.
  • Official Couple: Diana and Calreath are both gym leaders dating each other.
  • Peninsula of Power Leveling: The Level Trainer in the Secret Base will (for a price) battle the player with three Audino that give massive amounts of experience points upon defeat. Each Audino also only know a single move, Healing Wish, which causes it to KO itself, so earning levels this way is exceptionally easy. A bit less of an example on his last Audino, because the move fails if the user is the last available member of the team. This can be sped up by using a disabling move (Taunt, Disable, Torment, etc), forcing it to use Struggle. It may be an attack move (which can take a toll on weaker trainees), but it still at least does recoil damage.
    • Due to the difficulty of some of the battles (see Artificial Brilliance above), you're probably going to need to gain a few levels this way unless you're a competitive-level pro yourself.
  • Powered Armor: A new item called "Armor" has been added to this game, and equipping it to the appropriate Pokémon will not only increase their Defense and Special Defense by 25%, but give them a cool new armored sprite. So far, the only Pokémon to get armors are Tyranitar, Flygon, Leavanny, Zekrom, Delta Volcarona and Mewtwo. In-Universe, they are inventions of Anastasia, the Kepler Gym Leader.
  • Power of the Sun: The first gym leader, Orion, uses a team based on sunlight, such as Vulpix with Drought.
  • Prophecy Twist: Nora, Damian, and the player know of a prophecy that says a trainer who has been chosen by a Legendary "Pixie Pokémon" (Like Mew, Celebi, Shaymin, or Victini) will abolish all the cults on Torren... the twist comes when they learn that after the trainer does this, he will turn on the others and join the Infernal Cult. Subverted, as the Oracle that told them the prophecy was lying to get Zenith's guard down, and in fact made the whole thing up.
  • Purposely Overpowered: Primal Giratina is this. Its ability, Omnitype, makes it factor in the resistances and weaknesses of every type. In essence, it multiplies every type's weaknesses, resistances and immunities by every other type; in practice this means it's weak only to Rock, and has eight immunities. In-story, it's incredibly dangerous, being instrumental to the villains's plan.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Nora delivers a rather scathing one to Damian. Only thing is, she didn't mean to do it, she was upset because they just discovered in The Prophecy that one of them would turn on the other two, and she lashed out at Damian in anger.
  • Red Baron: Jaern, The Second Augur. The First Augur used to be this, but Jaern's propaganda has made it so people only fear him as The Second Augur, with most people forgetting why The First Augur was so great in the first place.
  • Religion of Evil: Each of the cults are this. Worshiping a legendary of their choice and sacrificing their members in hopes of them joining as they fight everyone else to make the world the way they desire.
  • The Reveal: Jaern is the big bad, although some people, such as the cultists from the beginning, saw it coming.
    • Damian is the son of Audrey, the Abyssal Cult's leader.
      • The prophecy turns out to be fake, and the Oracle made it under the orders of Nyx, the true main antagonist.
      • You are the son/daughter of Adam, the First Augur, and his (presumed) deceased wife.
  • The Rival: Damian and Nora are yours.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After you finally foil Taen and Reukra's plans one time too many, they individually decide to leave the Torren region in search for places where crime won't be stopped by plucky kids.
  • Sealed Good in a Can: Adam, the First Augur. When he was finally beaten, he couldn't be killed due to Arceus's Crystal, so his foes eventually convinced Darkrai to trap him in the Dream Realm of his child (the player), whereupon Persephone's Gengar would use Dream Eater to erase his child's memories (and by extension Adam). Thankfully, he's not erased yet by the time the game's story start.
  • The Stoner: Xavier, the leader of the Vipik Gym. There is always mist wherever he is, and several NPCs point it out. No, really, he uses a Mega Bong to Mega Evolve his Beedrill!
  • Shout-Out:
    • You can meet a Rich Boy Hans in Cyan Cavern. He says he'd like to own a mansion filled with every Pokémon except Ice.
    • When Zenith tries to mind control the player, he says, "Would you kindly touch the back wall?"
    • In addition to having both slot machines and Voltorb Flip, the Game Corner in Roggan Town has Triple Triad.
    • Delta Pokémon are a reference to the Delta Species era of the TCG in which various species of Pokémon were given different typings from what they would normally have. In-game, you can even travel to the Holon Region, which is filled with Delta Pokémon.
    • The Delta Squirtle line is based on the Ninja Turtles. And Delta Blastoise's shiny form is pretty much Bowser.
    • There's a minor scientist named Dr. Rights.
    • Eduard of the Elite Four is a walking shout-out. His battle strategy revolves around using Sandstorm, he uses a Mega Mixtape as a Keystone, and what is his name an anagram of? Darude!
    • The books in the Utira Town library are full of these, mostly in the form of Punny Names: American Psyduck, One Hundred Years Of Geodude, The Fault In Our Staryus...
  • Smug Snake: All of the cult leaders are this.
  • Step One: Escape: The first time the player becomes playable has them (with the help of Mew) attempt to escape the building that the Cult of Darkrai was holding them hostage in.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: The Helios Mall receptionist says the basement is off limits and that there's no hole to the sewers and the Black Market under there. Absolutely not!
  • Take That!: A large number of NPCs say various things that poke fun at the main series' logic, mock "out of touch" older folks who criticize the titles, and mock a wide variety of society's idiosyncrasies. One example of the latter is an NPC who claims the pyramids must have been built by aliens because ancient people "can't be as smart as we are now".
  • Take That, Audience!: A lot of the aforementioned "take that" moments seem to be directed toward the competitive scene, which one can infer by the game's difficulty is the target audience. Most of these spoof bad player etiquette and controversial Smogon tierings.
  • Temporary Online Content: Shiftrite and Zoronite can only be received as a special promotion via Mystery Gift, and if you miss the availability window, they're lost forever. It's been suggested that these Mega Stones will be available later on in the game once it's more complete, but for the moment, they play this trope straight. Flygonite used to be this, but can now be found in-game.
    • As of Version 1.2.3, this is no longer the case for the Shiftrite and Zoronite, as they can be found at the Mt. Rose Base and REM Ocean areas (respectively).
  • Title Drop: Quoted by Nyx, the Greater-Scope Villain in her Motive Rant:
    Giratina will rule once more, and Arceus, the revolter, the insurgent, will be cast aside forever.
  • Touch of Death: MISSINGNO has the Ability Glitch, which instantly KOs any battler that makes physical contact with it.
  • The Unchosen One:
    • It's implied that whoever was chosen by a Pixie Pokémon but doesn't end up being The Chosen One will end up as this. In light of the Reveal that the prophecy was a fake, the player character actively claims this role by thwarting the cults anyway — and in doing so gains the attention of Nyx, who faked it in the first place, and Malde, who despite being an antagonist occasionally aids you for his own reasons. Thus the player ends up playing the role of The Chosen One after all, although Chosen by specific people. Double Subverted?
    • It's revealed that the The First Augur was this; despite the fact he was chosen by Hoopa and tried his best to abolish the cults in Torren, he ultimately failed.
  • Underground Monkey: Delta Pokémon, which are the same Pokémon with different typings, moves, and abilities.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight:
    • The Cultists of Darkrai at the beginning of the game don't bat an eye to the fact you're walking around with a Mew behind you. Neither will any of the game's other cultists, even when you actively have Mew as your following Pokémon. A later update fixes the former situation by having Mew be visibly transparent while walking through the Darkrai Cult base during the opening, showing that it has turned invisible.
    • Later, despite several people claiming they would love to see a Delta Pokémon, none of them react if you happen to have a Delta as the Pokémon following you outside of a Pokéball.
    • A man in the late-game area Dream Realm will express his fear of Darkrai, but will not react if you have Darkrai with you.
  • Unwinnable: In-universe, the Torren Gym/League Challenge was this for a year. The guards to Victory Road will not let anyone without 8 badges pass, but ever since the eighth gym and its gym leader disappeared a year ago (and no-one bothered to replace him), everyone had more or less accepted that no-one would ever reach the Elite Four and the best anyone could hope for was to find a random badge somewhere. Then you find the eighth gym and its Gym Leader Adam... inside your own dreams.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: You can choose to get a Delta Pokémon as a starter rather than an Eevee at the beginning of the game. It's made clear that by doing this, you're saving at least two of them (since your rival will also pick one) from being released into the wild where they would most likely die.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: In the Sonata Hills hospital, there's a sick boy in bed with a nurse who specifically chastises you to not go through the boy's items on the table; however, you can just ignore her and collect all of these items for yourself (for an Ultra Ball and a couple healing items).
  • Villainous Breakdown:
    • Zenith gets one when you defeat him the second time at the Infernal Base.
    • A downplayed example; Persephone gets progressively less stoic and more fed-up as the game progresses, which reaches a peak when she's trapped in the Dream Realm. By the time you catch Darkrai, she's reduced to spitting threats she's powerless to act on.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Jaern, the leader of the Sky Cult. As The Second Augur (after getting rid of The First Augur), he runs a propaganda train that has pretty much all of Torren treating him like The Savior.
    • Later, Zenith takes this role, albeit on a smaller scale. Fittingly, their goal is to overthrow Jaern and take his place as Augur.
  • The Virus: The fusion of the Deoxys virus and a strain of the Pokérus, it can turn people into immortal half-human/Deoxys hybrids and is contagious through physical contact.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Mew can use Transform to turn the protagonist into anyone whom they've collected the DNA for, usually various cultists to infiltrate their groups. Mew can also Transform itself into other Legendary Pokémon to use their special abilities, such as Shaymin to use Seed Flare (to purify polluted water) and Celebi to use Tesseract (to alter time).
  • Weather-Control Machine: Audrey uses Lugia to create a perfect storm and flood the world so that she can use Kyogre to have free reign over it.
  • Weather Manipulation: At least one important trainer uses a team based on one of the weather effects in the game.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: The Greater-Scope Villain, Nyx, is apparently one. Originally, the Distortion World was supposed to be the real world and the existing real world was supposed to be the Distortion World, but when Arceus beat Giratina and sealed it away, he made the world the way it is now. Nyx, with her people trapped in the Distortion World, planned to resummon Giratina, and with Arceus's Crystal in hand, it would be granted the power to remake the world so that the Distortion World would become the real world where her people can thrive, and the existing real world would become the Distortion World. She apologizes to the player that it had to come to this, but when it comes down to it, her people matter most.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Audrey, the leader of the Abyssal Cult, has white hair.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?:
    • As mentioned above, Damian is Afraid of Needles.
    • The Delta Budew line have the ability Heliophobianote , which will cause it to lose one eighth of its HP each turn during harsh sunlight, while restoring one eighth of its HP during New Moon.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: In the beginning of the game, two Darkrai cultists wonder why Persephone is bothering to erase the protagonist's memories with Dream Eater if she's just going to kill them anyway. Turns out it's because Adam is trapped within their dreams — erasing their memories would have ensured that he would have had no way out.
  • Witch Doctor: There's a character named Witchdoctor in the Black Market, who uses a 'special powder' to allow Pokémon who normally need to be traded to evolve to reach the next stage of their evolution. It's left ambiguous if she's really a witch doctor or if it's just her name.
  • Wretched Hive: Much of Torren, but what really takes the cake is Helios City's underground Black Market, where, unlike ordinary battles, Pokémon are pit against each other to fight to the death.
  • Written by the Winners:
    • The Greater-Scope Villain Nyx quotes this trope by name and claims that this is the case between the original battle between Arceus and Giratina, about which one revolted against who. Arceus and Giratina were both equals, and the legend that Arceus created the Creation Trio and that Giratina revolted and had to be banished to the Distortion World is all due to the fact that Arceus won; the legend would be told differently if it was Giratina that won.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: One of the options you have when choosing your character's appearance is purple hair. You can also buy blue hair dye in the clothes shop in the Pokémon Center basement. Several of the NPCs have actual blue or purple hair as well. (Zachary is a subversion: it's dyed.)
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: When Jaern is revealed to be the head of the Sky Cult, he gets his top subordinate East (who's also the Helios Gym Leader) to battle you to see who will be sacrificed to Rayquaza, fully confident in his subordinate's skills. When you win, Jaern keeps his word and sacrifices East.
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