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Video Game / Terra Battle

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Terra Battle was a Turn-Based Strategy game for iOS and Android developed and published by Mistwalker. It was released internationally on October 9, 2014.

The world is slowly dying; the atmosphere is thinning and even gravity is beginning to fail. Refusing to accept this fate a small group of pilgrims begin a search for the Maker, sleeping deep within the core of the planet. Along the way they must examine the fallen empire of Gallus and discover that there is more their world than they thought. These discoveries begin to raise questions about the very nature of their world and even the Maker itself.

Gameplay revolved around performing "pincer" formations to attack enemies; that is, flanking an enemy from adjacent tiles in opposite directions. Player units that have a clear line of sight to either attacking unit can perform combo attacks with the two attacks. All participants in the attack have a chance to activate skills, such as doing extra damage, healing allied units, or casting buffs and debuffs. Enemies can attack either individually or by forming their own pincer formations. Each stage has a set number of enemy waves; the stage ends when all waves have been defeated (victory) or less than two units remain (defeat).

The game featured a "Download Starter" campaign, inspired by Kickstarter. Every 100,000 downloads, a reward was unlocked. Many of these rewards were new music or art by industry veterans such as Nobuo Uematsu and Kenji Ito, collectibles such as a strategy guide and an original soundtrack, and new game features such as Co-Op Multiplayer and Player Versus Player modes, with the ultimate goal of 2 million downloads prompting development of a Gaiden Game for consoles. Said goal was met on April 30, 2015.

A sequel game, titled Terra Battle 2, was launched in Japan on September 20, 2017 and began rolling out in other territories on September 21. Tragically, its run was cut short and all servers have shut down.

Terra Battle 2 also had a collaboration sidequest in Final Fantasy XV, titled "Close Encounter of the Terra Kind" in which Noctis meets up with Sarah. Both have been summoned by a group of Hiso Aliens in order to help defeat the mysterious and destructive Eroder.

All good things must come to an end, though, and the servers were shut down on June 29, 2020.

Terra Battle provides examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: 54B2 is this to his daughter, 36AIS.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Kana, who is inexperienced with love, is crushing on the wild, masculine Zan.
  • Alternate Self: Recoded characters often have related, but very differrent backstories to their base forms. For example, Yukken is a chatterbox who overwhelm arguments with lots of words, but recoded Yukken is a girl who has never said a single word in her life. Gatz is a street thief who lost his sister, but recoded Gatz is a prince who is looking for his missing sisters.
  • Anti-Grinding: Each Metal Zone only awards EXP for characters up to a certain level.
  • Artificial Limbs: Upon unlocking their third job, many characters will have body parts replaced with mechanical prosthesis. For example, one of the two starting characters, the archer Grace, has her bow-arm replaced with an Arm Cannon.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Many enemies will perform attacks even when none of your units are in range of them, or cast buffs or healing abilities even if none of their allies are in range to receive the effect.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • Zael's "Rally" skill. It boosts both Atk and Matk for all party members. It's also the only player skill that can move characters around outside of moving phase, opening up new strategies. 90% of the time it just ends up screwi g up your formation.
    • Zavison's "Indiscriminate Fire" skill. It deals huge damage to all units around him, allies and enemies alike. Yes, he will probably end up killing them both.
  • Bar Brawl: Chapter 3 is spent fighting enemies inside a tavern in an effort to convince warriors to join your side.
  • Big Bad: King 54B2 serves as this for the first 30 chapters, as he is the leader of the major enemy forces. Chapters 31 to 34 are side stories exploring his past.
  • Blob Monster: Some of the enemies, notably the Puddings from the Hunting Zones. They all have the distinction of having extremely high chance to dodge physical attacks. Magic attacks easily kill them, however.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: It wouldn't be a mobage without this trope. The game features "Energy" currency, which can be picked up through some login bonuses, clearing chapters, getting players to use your referral code, using another player's referral code (which only works once), and of course spending real cash on them. Energy is used for summoning rare allies via Pacts of Truth, continuing after a Game Over, and refilling Stamina.
  • Combination Attack: If any player units have a direct line of sight to the ones currently attacking, they will also execute attacks and, like the two attackers, may activate their skills.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: Several event quests have you teaming up with other players to defeat a quest-exclusive boss. You can also get a friend to join you for story quests.
  • Cool Starship: The true nature of the Maker.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Some monsters and bosses can be recruited to join the player when defeated.
  • Defunct Online Video Games: The entire Terra series is gone now. The first game was the most successful, lasting a few months short of 6 years from October 9, 2014 to June 29, 2020. Terra Battle 2 barely hung on for one year's existence from September 21, 2017 to September 28, 2018. And Terra Wars didn't even last six months: it first launched on July 1, 2019, and then shut down on December 24, 2019.
  • Descriptively-Named Species: Beastfolks have beast-like features. Lizardfolks are, well, Lizard Folk. Stonefolks are made of stone.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: For magic attacks, Fire and Ice do extra damage to each other, and so do Thunder and Darkness. Patch 4.0.0 introduces Photon and Gravity elements, which aside from dealing extra damage to each other, also beats Darkness and Thunder, respectively. Patch 4.8.0. then introduces Sun and Moon elements, which oppose each other, but also strong against Ice and Fire respectively.
  • Elevator Action Sequence: Chapters 5 and 7 are spent fighting enemies in a descending gondola with a barrier that prevents the heroes from exiting until it reaches its destination while allowing enemies to freely slip through and attack.
  • Expy: The challenge event Hedgehog Hullabloo has a hedgehog named Knack who looks like Sonic the Hedgehog. Not surprising as they were both designed by Naoto Oshima.
  • Fire, Ice, Lightning: Three of the original four elements, with Darkness added to oppose Lightning.
  • Fluffy Fashion Feathers: Sheena gets them in her third job.
  • Genre Shift: The game's first few chapters frame the world as a fairly standard, if rather bleak, Fantasy setting. Quickly, however, the game shifts to Science Fiction with the addition of robots, aliens, and spaceships.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere: The Apirath, which suddenly attacks your party from another dimension at the end of Chapter 32. Your party member noted the strangeness, but it's never brought up again afterwards.
  • Guest-Star Party Member:
    • Peprope joins you for one fight at the end of chapter 14. He's ridiculously overpowered for that fight, with absurd skills like raising skill activation to 100% for the entire party.
    • Proto joins you at Chapter 31-10. He's pretty weak, but handy against the Puzzle Boss you're facing.
  • Heel–Face Turn: King 54B2 at the very end of the first story. After clearing chapter 34, you can even recruit him into your party.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Palpa was supposed to be sacrificed to the Maker, but Peprope pulls her out and replaces her with himself.
  • Just Before the End: The slow death of the world is what prompts the player's party to begin to seek the maker
  • Knockback: Many enemies' skills cause this. The knockback can do everything from screwing up unit formations to knocking your units into floor hazards for additional damage. It's possible to instantly lose a unit to a weak unit if the knockback sends them into a particularly powerful hazard, such as high Spikes spikes or the Beans' elemental traps.
  • Legendary Weapon:
    • Maralme and Velraine can both use a sword called Wyrmtail.
    • All the weapon item drops that are used to upgrade characters' jobs fall under this trope, the named ones like the ever present Excalibur even more so.
  • Little Bit Beastly: The Beastfolk race, who are brown-skinned and have large animal ears, but otherwise extremely similar to humans.
  • Lizard Folk: The aptly named Lizardfolk race.
  • Metal Slime:
    • The Metal Zone features "Metal" enemies that dish out a lot of EXP, but also have a high likelihood of escaping after one or two turns. Occasionally, "Runner" enemies will appear that can do that and also will move away if the player tries to move a unit close to them, making them more difficult to kill. Once in a while there will be a "All Hail the King" event where the player can try to kill a Metal King before it leaves for even larger EXP spoils. There are six Metal Zones tailored to specific level ranges, each with their own opening and closing times.
    • The Puddings, Tins, Puppets, and Coin Creeps in the Hunting Zones also count. The first three have high item drop rates, while the last drops tons of money when killed. However, they reward no EXP.
  • Non-Entity General: Many cutscenes will use second-person pronouns to address the player, but the exact nature of the player character is never made clear. Some dialogues also suggest that your party members are talking to each other, but it is never mentioned who.
  • Optional Boss: Several bosses act as endgame challenges for those who have the top-tier units. The three Dragon Kings and the two Royal Rings give you powerful Companions for beating them, while Shin'en and Mutoh have a chance to join you. Mutoh and Sun King are notorious for requiring some of the rarest units just to have a chance at beating them.
  • Play Every Day:
    • You earn an automated gift for every day that you log in. The more consecutive days you log in, the better the reward.
    • The Hunting Zone quests rotate daily in a weekly cycle, in order to encourage this trope.
  • Power-Up Letdown: The A rank stat-boosting Companions (Mithril set) are actually worse than their B rank counterparts (Skullsplitter, Bewitching Bow, etc). This is because the B rank Companions offer active "Stat+10%" buffs, which are stackable. In an average boss battle, that means a steady +40% buff in stats note . In comparison, the A ranks only offer passive, non-stackable "Stat+5%" buffs.
  • Premium Currency: The game has Energy as the purchasable currency. Other than that, it's only obtainable as Daily Login rewards, scoring in Weekly Challenge mode, event rewards, or clearing the "Sweet Temptation" quest which only appears about once in two week. It's mainly used to obtain Adventurers or high tier Companions, but can also refill the Stamina gauge or retry stages after Game Over.
  • Rock Monster: The Stonefolk who live underground are made of rocks. They're a lot more sentient and humanoid than your average rock monsters though.
  • Rugged Scar: A lot of the characters have these.
  • Send in the Clones: The Oxsecian secret weapon, the trio of super-soldiers known as the Zero Series, attack their opponents by overwhelming them with clones of themselves.
  • Shoot the Medic First: Some bosses come with healer units. Kill said units first or your net damage output will be scratch at best and negative at worst.
  • Shout-Out: In chapter 28, you can fight Kraken, Marilith, Tiamat and Lich.
  • Spell Levels:
    • Physical attacks usually have prefixes that denote their power, followed by the weapon type. The prefixes are, in ascending order of strength, Mega-x, Giga-x, Tera-x, Peta-x, with "x" being the weapon type (sword, spear, or bow).
    • Elemental attacks have fancier names:
      • Fire: Fire -> Inferno -> Solar Wind -> Big Bang
      • Ice: Ice -> Glacier -> Absolute Zero -> Negatemp
      • Lightning: Thunder -> Lightning -> Tempest -> Lepton
      • Darkness: Shadow -> Abyss -> Dark Matter -> Oblivion
      • Photon: Radiance -> Luxon -> Tachyon -> Holy
      • Gravity: Crush -> Gravity -> Supergravity -> Axion
      • Sun: Sunlight -> Corona -> Thermonuclear -> Solar Flare
      • Moon: Moonlight -> Luna -> Frigid Moon -> Full Moon
      • Non-Elemental: Trance -> Ultima -> Transcendence -> X-treme
  • Spikes of Doom: Spike tiles appear in some quests. A character that stays on a spike tile will sustain damage for every turn they stay on it, and will also take damage each time they pass over one. Later chapters introduce spike traps with taller spikes that do more damage. There are other kinds of damage tiles (such as lava, poison(ous mud) and ice tiles), but spike tiles are by far the most common. The damage can be nullified through the Levitation status.
  • Status Effects: The units with the "Remedy" element are focused on curing and sometimes inflicting ailments,
    • Poison deals damage to afflicted units every turn.
    • Paralysis makes a unit unable to move or attack for 2 turns,
    • Sleep does the same thing as Paralysis, but will be cured when attacked by a pincer.
    • Confusion makes units unable to attack and move to random locations at the start of the turn.
    • Petrification turns units to stone and makes them unable to act for a very long time.
    • Demoralize makes the unit basically unable to cast skills as it cuts skill activation rate by 100% and greatly reduces their attack power. If the character in question is at 100% SB the skills retain their base activation rate but still do little to no damage.
    • Gravity, later renamed Shadowbind, makes the unit unable to move and deal damage per turn. It also removes Levitation effect.
    • Icebind makes the unit unable to move. Furthermore, any pincers will kill the affected unit, regardless of damage.
    • Alika Lambda has the unique skill "Fetters", which limits enemy movement to only two squares. Its effect is weaker than other statuses, but it works on nearly all non-boss enemies.
  • Stripperiffic: Some of the characters' outfits become this by their third job. The most prominent examples are the Idol Singers Bonna, Zeera, and Zafitte, who are basically wearing swimsuits.
  • Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors: For physical attacks, Sword beats Bow, Bow beats Spear, and Spear beats Sword. Staff is neutral, and is usually reserved for magic users. Later chapters feature more and more Staff-type enemies explicitly so players can't exploit the weapon triangle.
  • Tail Slap: Certain Lizardfolk can learn this skill. It functions as a physical attack that hits everyone around it.
  • Time-Limit Boss:
    • In the Metal Zone event "All Hail the King", the Metal King will retreat after 6 turns.
    • The Co-op Battle boss Valkyrie leaves if not killed in 6 turns. Killing a certain enemy delays this by 3 additional turns.
  • Timed Mission:
    • The daily quest Tin Parade gives you six turns per wave to defeat as many enemies as possible for job-specific job-adding drops.
    • Another daily quest, Puppet Show, eschews the standard turn timer for a 12-second timer that carries over from one turn to the next, requiring you to quickly move your units to maximize your number of turns. It is possible to end the quest on your first turn if you start to move a unit but fail to put it down in 12 seconds.
    • Chapter 21-10 begins with the boss casting Death Sentence and then temporarily leaving shortly thereafter. You then have 25 turns to clear all four battles, including the proper boss battle, before your entire team perishes.
    • The Last Story event will lock you out of the best ending if you take more than 50 seconds moving characters around. Of course it's not mentioned anywhere in-game.
  • The War Sequence: Chapter 20 has only one quest...which is twenty battles long. It is so long that the boss theme, normally reserved for the last battle in a given quest, starts playing three battles in advance.
  • Together in Death: During Chapter 29 a person must sacrifice themself to activate the party's last chance at survival. Palpa insists on being this sacrifice to be with another character that sacrificed himself earlier.
  • The Tower: The Tower of Temptation.
  • Shout-Out: Combined with a meta CallBack to Final Fantasy, a group of late game bosses, The Chimeras (Kraken, Marilith, Tiamat, and Lich) are named after, and even occasionally refered to as, the Four Fiends.
  • Stalked by the Bell: in Chapter 26 there are times when an enemy that is nearly invincible will appear. If all other enemies are not slain by the time he starts acting he will unleash deadly attacks on entire rows that can kill some characters in a single hit.
  • Underground City: There are two. First is the city of Agra, where people live using machinery left by the ancient civilization. Deeper underground is the city of Prah, where the Stonefolks live.
  • Underground Level: Chapter 5 onwards have you going deeper and deeper into the planet's core, aiming for the Maker.
  • Useless Useful Spell:
    • While status effects are powerful when they hit, they're too unreliable to be useful.
    • Revival skills only trigger when you advance a round in the battle. Meaning they're useless against bosses, which is often the last round, and where most of the deaths are expected to take place.
  • Wham Episode: The end of Chapter 15 reveals that the Maker is actually a Cool Starship.
    • Another occurs in Chapter 28 it's revealed that The Oxsecians created the Animatas as a Life Breeder project to create new forms of life, but they lost control of them and they destroyed the Oxsecian homeworld.

Terra Battle 2 provides examples of:

  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: A problem that the sequel had that messed with people's muscle memory was the ability to shuffle around enemies when you previously couldn't.