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Underrail is an old school turn-based Western RPG developed and published by the Belgrade-based indie developer studio Stygian Software that throws the player into a dystopian post-apocalyptic world deep underground. According to the developers, the game has lots of influence from Fallout, System Shock, Arcanum, Jagged Alliance (for the tactical aspect), and many other computer RPGs of the '90s, and it shows. It was first released in early access in late 2012, before officially releasing in December 2015.

An unknown length of time into the future, life on the surface of Earth has been made impossible. In order to survive, biotechnology superconglomerate BioCorp constructs the Underrail, a titanic system of self-sufficient habitats, laboratories, industrial facilities, and support structures, deep within the Earth.

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Three hundred and some years after the Descent, Old BioCorp has fallen, destroyed by both the myriad issues facing the Underrail and the rampant corruption in their upper ranks. Humanity now clings to life in isolated station states, self-governed communities that represent the last bastions of a fading civilization.

You are a newly-admitted citizen of the South Gate Station, a pacifistic but well-equipped station in southern Underrail. After receiving great aptitude results from tests applied by various specialists, you are called to duty by SGS's leaders in order to put your skills to the test. When a mysterious object triggers a mounting conflict between the various factions of the Underrail, you are tasked with locating and retrieving it; as you pursue it across the underworld, you become increasingly involved in the Underrail's nightmarish dangers, political intrigues, and conflicts.

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The game is notable for its complex story, absolutely brutal difficulty, and the "Oddity XP" system, which completely averts Level Grinding. Instead, it encourages the player to explore, granting XP solely by discovering unique "oddity" items; these are found in a great variety of environments, or as unique loot from enemies. It's still possible to enable "Classic XP" to gain experience from killing enemies, but the oddities found don't grant as many points.

An Expansion Pack, Underrail: Expedition, was released on July 22, 2019. Featuring a new story that unlocks mid-game, you'll be able to take a break from the usual metro-crawling to take a boat to the infamous Black Sea, a massive underground body of water. The Black Sea features vicious fauna, ruins of older civilisations, natives, pirates, and something far more sinister than all of those.

On 11th March 2020, a new standalone campaign/sequel to the game titled Underrail: Infusion was announced. It will feature an entirely different part of the Underrail, and a revamped, updated game engine.

Not to be confused with Undertale. Despite both games being set underground, Undertale homages a different sub-genre of Role-Playing Game.

Visit the game's website here. The game can be found on Steam and GOG.


The game provides examples of:

  • Abandoned Laboratory: Owing to the entire metro being built and owned by Biocorp in the past, these pop up fairly regularly.
  • Abnormal Ammo: Every caliber of bullet has a corresponding type of special ammunition that you can craft. These range from Shock, Acid and Incendiary to Infected and Micro-Shrapnel Bullets.
  • Ace Custom: Players who invest heavily into Crafting will be able to make their own gear from scratch. This will initially be the same gear you'll find in containers or the hands of enemies, but later on, you'll be able to make gear that will never randomly generate; such equipment is invariably much more powerful than anything you can loot or buy, such as Smart Rapid 12.7mm Sniper Rifles, Shock Supersteel melee weapons, Infused Ancient Rathound leather armor, and more. You can also find certain items that can be used to make your weapons better for a set number of attacks, such as high-quality firearm lubricant, sharpening stones for melee weaponry, and explosive or electrical caps for sledgehammers.
    • You can sometimes find unique guns, which are usually Lawyer-Friendly Cameos of real-world weapons. These include the Gluck 17, K&H MP6, and W&S .44 Magnum. These start out better than most generated gear, but inferior to crafted gear. You can take them to Miles in Rail Crossing for refurbishment, at which point they gain MUCH better stats and unique perks that make them competitive with even the best gear you can make.
    • The melee equivalent to the aforementioned unique guns are Supersteel melee weaponry. They will never generate as loot or be sold in shops. The only way to make them is to help Bernard repair Gloria, the biggest furnace in Foundry; even then, you'll still need to be a master craftsman in order to make anything with them. Once you do, they're the best melee weapons available - not only are their stats competitive with the best of other metals, each category of Supersteel weapon comes with a unique bonus. For instance, Supersteel Spears grant +3 Precision.
  • Achilles' Heel: All of the available combat styles suffer from certain drawbacks.
    • Guns are solid all-rounders with answers for most situations, but they're limited by several factors. They can be rendered nearly-harmless by well-made armor, energy shields, and enemies who have high dodge stats. Their ammunition is also the most expensive out of any ranged weapon, which is especially limiting on Dominating.
    • Melee weapons can do a lot of damage in one turn, and if you add electroshock generators to the equation, they can even stun enemies; however, they suffer versus armor. Even the best available anti-armor melee weapons, Sledgehammers and Spears, are merely lacklustre instead of terrible, like Machetes, Knives and Fists.
    • Psionics are very good at handling anything with a pulse, but robotic enemies are immune to nearly all of their tricks, and resist the damage types they can dish out.
    • Throwing-focused builds are limited by cooldown; unless you're very diligent in setting up groups of enemies for your throws, you'll quickly find yourself out of offensive options.
  • Acid Attack: A hallmark of Mutants, human and dog alike, who both spit and bleed acid. It can also be extracted from glands looted from them for use in traps and weapons.
  • Acronym Confusion: One of the oddities is a registration plate that the PC attributes to the United Stations, even though they are confused how it ended up deep in South Underrail, far away from the Protectorate.
  • Action Bomb: The aptly named Kamikaze Bots, small quadruple robots whose sole purpose is to rush up to you and blow up. Fortunately, they have no armor to speak of and thus not only they are easily destroyed, but also can set off a chain reaction with each other.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: Rude Rob, the insult-slinging bartender at the Hanging Rat, says you're so ugly that you caused the earthquake that kickstarted the plot. If you reply by saying he's so ugly he'll cause another one, he'll concede that it was a good comeback.
  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: As more and more powerful items become available, prices skyrocket as well. You can turn this trope completely on its' head by speccing into Mercantile and Crafting, which will let you break the game's economy wide open.
  • The All-Seeing A.I.: This is aggressively averted by Stealth, which can allow the player to ghost through encounters where concealment should be impossible. However, once you've been spotted, it's played straight again; enemies will know exactly where you are once they've spotted you, and the only way to break their aggro is to get into stealth and stay out of their sight until their detection level drops below orange.
  • Advanced Ancient Acropolis: You encounter the ruins of one in Underrail Expedition, spread out across an underground lake known as the Black Sea.
  • Affectionate Parody: Al Fabet is a travelling Intrepid Merchant found in Core City, who simply sells... everything, including a human brain.
    • So much in fact, that he shares the same burden that the Player Character is been going through it all by carrying a sack of random loot to sell anyone who can buy them. Bonus points for also being under the effects of Critical Encumbrance Failure.
  • After the End: The surface became uninhabitable long ago, and humans now live in the eponymous Underrail metro network underground.
  • A Home Owner Is You: As of the the May 2015 update, player housing has been added to the game.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: IRIS, the AI responsible for ARKE powerstation, who due to prolonged separation from its creator became obsessed with protecting the facility.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: A feature in most dungeons, which provide an alternative route to hacking or picking locks. They're big enough for you and packs of rathounds to fight inside with no difficulty whatsoever. This may be an excusable example of the trope, given that Underrail takes place so deep underground that maintaining breathable air would probably require huge ventilation shafts.
  • A.K.A.-47: Understandable given the futuristic setting, but some guns are "old world" ones with fake names like a "Gluck 17" (Glock 17) or "TT-3000" (TT-33 Tokarev).
  • Alien Among Us: The Godmen - Rahm-Umbra, Tanner and the unknown third one.
  • Almighty Janitor: The Dude, a constantly intoxicated but fun hobo who just happens to be J.Dyson - head of Biocorp psionic research division, discoverer of the alien Monoliths, psychic and low-end Dimensional Traveller.
  • Ambiguous Time Period: The game takes place at least 200 years after an unknown (but non-nuclear) disaster rendered the surface uninhabitable for humans. Word of God states that the world prior to the disaster was in an "early space age", which would explain the fairly advanced tech still in use.
    • The Expedition expansion pack dates the game's events at 371 years after Descent. When the Descent happened remains ambiguous.
  • And the Adventure Continues: Should you decide to leave SGS and travel north by the end, the epilogue says that you decided your destiny lies somewhere else, going to Hexagon.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • If you spot a trap while you're moving, your character will immediately stop what they're doing so that you don't blunder onto a trap you already noticed.
    • Both conventional firearms and energy weapons can be conveniently reloaded with any available ammunition type or battery by holding down Shift and using the QWERTY keys.
    • Both containers and the player's inventory have automatic sorting options, making organizing your increasingly-massive collection of ammunition, medical supplies, crafting ingredients, keys, quest items, and other assorted stuff easier.
    • There is an "Automatic" button for trading, allowing the player to quickly sell or buy whatever they want from a merchant without needing to haggle - unless they want to. It should be noted that this option isn't always the most efficient way of getting your money's worth.
    • Once you move into the player home in Core City, you can ask to have all of the items from your room at SGS shipped to your new house, saving the player the headache of personally moving over an entire collection of items.
  • Apocalypse How: A catacylsmic event rendered life on the surface impossible, pushing the remainder of humanity to live in underground stations, mostly subway systems. The game is rather vague about the exact nature of this event, however.
  • Apocalyptic Log: Many are found when exploring the underrail, especially in the deep caverns.
  • Arbitrary Gun Power: Zig-zagged. Pistols are realistically much less effective than other classes of guns, although they are much more lightweight, even the Hand Cannon-type pistols. Played straight with crossbows, however; they are less effective at penetrating armor than other types of ranged weaponry.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: Certain types of ammunition, feats and skills can negate mechanical damage protection. The most practical example would be W2C-type bullets, bullets that are jacketed with Tungsten; they pierce through mechanical damage resistance, but do less damage overall.
  • Art Evolution: Compare earlier Alpha screenshots when the game was still named Timelapse Vertigo to the newest, more refined ones.
  • Artificial Brilliance: The AI is capable of some nasty tactics to take you down. They will use anything a player can use, including grenades, throwing nets, Morphine, Adrenaline, psionics.. On higher difficulties they become outright murderous. However..
  • Artificial Stupidity: The AI has some enormous holes in it. They show very little regard for hazards such as fire, acid or poison, and if they have to walk through a bear trap to reach you, they will. They also don't have the best accuracy with thrown items, meaning that they are fully susceptible to the same facepalm-inducing grenade-into-the-nearest-wall slip-ups that many players know and love. Oh, and friendly AI is even worse - if they step into a hazard you created, they'll turn hostile; they won't hesitate to try for precision grenade throws near allies(read: you), either.
    • Most of these issues come from the fact that the AI is generally intended to serve as opposition to the player, not to other AI; the main game has relatively few instances where the player has any substantial back-up, but Expedition opens with a prolonged battle between Aegis-Sec and the Natives, where these flaws are on glaring display. This leads to bizarre decisions such as using a valuable and powerful Mk. 4 Frag Grenade to kill a single native who's already low on HP. Aegis Sec troops will also rarely use Burst Fire, despite most of them being armed with SMGs and Assault Rifles.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: The Sørmirbæren. The only Sørmirbæren you'll meet who won't try to immediately kill you on sight are Yngwar and their women. Dialogue with the Ferryman heavily implies that they're about this friendly with everybody else; they only tolerate him because he proved himself a Worthy Opponent. Going by what you can find in Øyensørm's lair, this is probably at least partially due to the Shadowlith's influence on them.
  • Archaic Weapon for an Advanced Age: In a setting where personal energy shields, directed-energy weaponry, cybernetic augmentation and advanced genetic engineering exist, many people still use machetes, spears, sledgehammers, knives and swords for combat.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Many of the unique items (denoted by a purple name) are likely weaker compared to what you can find or craft. What takes the cake is the Master Demolitionist Belt. It grants 3 utility slots, but not only does it increase the AP cost of throwing grenades, but it also grants a special ability to detonate 1 of each grenade in your belt right at your feet, most likely killing you in the process, if it doesn't at least damage you severely.
    • Averted by the New Year Resolution update, where you can now take many unique guns to Myles in Rail Crossing to refurbish at a price, vastly improving their stats and occasionally adding new unique ones.
    • The Wasteland Hawk is explicitly mentioned as being a monster of a weapon with no practical application by Myles if you show it to him. It costs 35AP to fire it, making it hard to fire more than 2 shots a turn but is loud enough to daze anyone near it when it's fired
    • Persuasion allows you to skip some combat scenarios, gleam more insight from several characters and very rarely offer alternate conclusions to quests, but it is completely useless in combat, outside of a pair of glasses that you can only get by working with JKK. It also scales off Will, which is a Dump Stat for builds that do not use psionic powers.
    • Almost any skill or weapon in the game can be this if it isn't part of your build. That 9mm Rapid Smart Huszar rifle you found might shred through anything in the game, but you're never going to hit anything with it if unless you have high Guns and Perception. Likewise, if you're a nimble gunslinger, you won't even be able to LIFT a Shock Tungsten Sledgehammer, much less beat a Rathound to death with it.
    • Heavy armor looks intimidating and will allow you to No-Sell a lot of attacks outright, but unless your build is focused on using it, it's so heavy and bulky that it renders you nearly immobile in combat. Considering how important positioning is in Underrail, this is a bit of a problem.
  • Back-Alley Doctor: Fixer in Junkyard, who charges extra for anesthetic and wears a blood-spattered jumpsuit. Asking Lansky, the Arena manager, about him will reveal that he used to be the Arena's resident surgeon. He was fired for throwing people who weren't dead down the body disposal chute, "laughing maniacally".
  • Badass Army: There are several military corps to be found around Underrail, and all of them are very dangerous.
    • The Protectorate is the most immediate example. While opinions vary on how benign they are, there is little question that they represent a very organized and very lethal fighting force.
    • The Gray Army, the armed forces of Western Underrail. While you only see them once in-game on The Dude's second quest, they seem to be extremely well-organized, well-equipped soldiers.
    • The Faceless are less traditional than most, but as a fighting force, they are more than a match for Praetorian Security.
    • All of the Oligarch factions of Core City have shades of this; Praetorian Security are the most straightforwards example, while CoreTech focuses on cutting-edge technology, and JKK focuses on Boring, but Practical.
  • Badass Creed: A few of the tattoos a player can get come with one, especially the ones that show allegiance to a particular faction:
    • Aegis Incorporated: "You go any direction, provided it is forward."
    • Coretech: "State-of-the Art equipment amounts to a State-of-the-Art agent."
    • Praetorian Security: "Order through Strength."
    • Killing The Beast of Foundry: "To Be Man is to fight monsters."
  • Back Stab: The Stealth plus melee weapons build is highly effective, provided that you don't accidentally bump into someone before attacking.
  • Bait-and-Switch: The ending of the Arena questline. Garry the Informant appears instead of Dread Lord, leading the player to suspect that they may actually be the same person - only to reveal that he is actually Carnifex, the previous champion, and has killed Dread Lord so that he can duel the player instead.
  • Beef Gate: Depot A, the infamous part of Old Junkyard that serves as the player's final obstacle before the game lets you off the leash. It is swarming with incredibly annoying enemies who can easily overwhelm you unless your build passes muster for the rest of the game. In a way, this is Cruel to Be Kind, since doing it this way prevents the player from getting 10+ hours into the game before realizing that their build won't be able to take on the mid to endgame content.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The player's actions will generally determine whether any given faction or location gets one of these, a Downer Ending, or a Golden Ending. The third ending for the Player's personal story definitely qualifies, though - after being mutated by Mutagen D6, you manage to reach the Mutie Enclave with the help of some other mutants. You spend the rest of your life there - reasonably safe and comfortable, but in constant pain, haunted by memories of a past you'll never fully remember.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Large mutant insects are some of the deadliest foes in the caves. Psi Beetles, Burrowers and Crawlers to name a few.
  • Body Horror: Being exposed to the Mutagenic Goo developed by Old BioCorp leads to this. At the bare minimum, your blood is replaced with acid, you form tumorous glands throughout your body (that also pump out acid), and you are left with a constant, horrible, wheezing cough. Some people are even less lucky and mutate into hulking, seven-foot-tall monstrosities with claw-like limbs - including you, if you let yourself come into contact with mutagen gas.
  • Boring, but Practical: A Assault Tank build (Assault Rifle, at least 6 Strength, high Constitution, Guns skill, heavy armour) can be very viable past the early game and highly adaptable to different circumstances.
    • Traps are extremely useful at evening odds against either a large number of opponents, or a single, powerful one. Set up in chokepoints or just around corners, they can incapacitate or even kill incoming attackers. While enemies will attempt to avoid or even defuse traps if they see them, this can be abused to force enemies to expend extra APs on moving around them, and on occasions where there are no alternate routes, will run through them anyways. They don't require too much skill investment to use, though they can't be laid during combat unless you possess the Quick Tinkering feat.
    • The humble Throwing Net. It requires no investment into throwing to reliably hit your target, and rooting them to the spot for even a few turns is incredibly potent. It even works on some enemies it logically probably shouldn't, such as security bots.
    • Caltrops, in a similar vein to the above Throwing Net. They are fantastic for evening the odds against large groups of highly-mobile enemies, such as Burrowers and Mutants. They're also fairly cheap to buy or craft, and given their large area of effect, you don't need to put any points into Throwing for them to be useful. As if all that wasn't enough, you can buy or craft poisoned versions, which push them from "useful" to "outright lethal" - the game won't allow caltrop damage to kill anybody, but the poison they apply is another story.
    • SMGs aren't as big, flashy or damaging as Assault Rifles are, but they make up for this in several key areas. Firstly, they don't require any stat investment in order to use them well, making them a great mainstay of your arsenal if you're a gunslinger who doesn't want to invest into strength. Secondly, their unique perks are very useful, and allow for more tactical flexibility than many others.
    • Flashbangs are almost essential for any close-range build due to their versatility. Throw them at an enemies' feet to stun them for two whole turns, letting you do whatever you want to them for free. They only need Chemistry 40 and Mechanics 5 to make them, their blueprint is 50 SGS tokens in Junkyard, and their base compounds (a Thin Grenade Case and Magnesium Powder) are so unbelievably common that multiple vendors sell the ingredients all over the Underrail. To top it all off, the stun effect is also an AOE, making it very easy to open the fight with a flashbang and completely wipe the floor with everyone who got affected by it, instantly turning the tide in your favor. On top of all that, Stealth builds are able to restealth during combat if they successfully flashbang every active enemy in the area and end combat manually. This lets them pull a full-on Smoke Out and absolutely break the enemy AI.
  • Breakable Weapons: Most weapons and armor have durability. You must either buy or craft repair kits that can be used to keep your equipment in working order.
  • Broken Bridge: At the start of the game, you're limited to South Gate Station and Junkyard. Access to the rest of the Underrail is blocked off by rubble from the recent earthquakes, and the trains are out for the same reason. This rubble can be cleared, but doing so requires either a Jackhammer or TNT Charges, and neither can be obtained until you complete Depot A, which is also when the trains start running again.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Heidi Gratz in Core City is completely derailed and diagnoses you with a different illness every single time you talk to her, but it turns out she's still a very competent doctor.
  • Bulletproof Vest: Several, but some can be averted with certain materials that protect you from other elements instead.
  • Caltrops: Used to slow enemies down by sapping movement points per stepped-on caltrop. They can also be coated with poison for greater effect.
  • But Thou Must!: Once you reach the Deep Caverns, you have no choice but to do as Rahm-umbra says and defeat the Final Boss. Justified in this case, as the boss controls the only way out. Both the Dude and rahm-umbra claim the reason you do all the things a protagonist does is because They saw you doing such things in their visions so it is inevitable that you are going to partake in those events, whether you want to or not.
  • The Casanova: Ethan Lanford, the Temporal Manipulation mentor. Asking around about him makes it clear he has a reputation as a dandy and a ladies' man; he'll prove the rumors right by immediately chatting up the PC if they're female.
  • Character Customization: Though there is little visual customization outside of your portrait and name, the skills and feats system is extraordinarily diverse and in-depth, allowing for considerable variety in character builds.
  • Combat Pragmatist: If you want to stay alive, let alone finish the game, you're going to have to become one of these par excellence. You are always outnumbered and often outgunned, and the only thing that can level the playing field for you is to ruthlessly exploit every possible weakness. Enemies use these tactics, too, but none of them are capable of combining them like the player can. To wit, most builds will use at least one of the following:
    • Poisonous weaponry. The player can apply poisons to most melee weapons, as well as caltrops, bear traps, and crossbow bolts. Considering the delightful array of horribly-venemous flora and fauna in South Underrail, enemies can look forwards to delightful symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, paralysis, mental impairment, paralysis, and necrosis.
    • Weaponry banned under virtually every set of combat laws ever written. Incendiary grenades can be made with gasoline, magnesium, and napalm. You can hose down an enemy with so many rounds of assault rifle fire that there realistically shouldn't be much left of their torso. Every weapon has jacketed hollow-point and tungsten armor-piercing rounds available. Depending on the caliber, enemies might get to enjoy bullets contaminated with acid, bullets designed to explode into clouds of shrapnel inside of their bodies, bullets designed to deliver electrical shocks, or bullets that explode. You can buy or craft sniper rifles chambered in 12.7mm, which is designed to pierce tank armor.
    • Psionics. If an enemy psionic can only blow you up or electrify you with his mind, you're lucky. If you're NOT lucky, they can strangle you with your own shadow, break your mind with despair, drive you violently insane, freeze you solid, impale you with spears of ice, or melt you with beams of fire.
    • Traps. Bear Traps, frag mines, high-explosive anti-vehicle mines (that you can still use on people), caltrops, and EMP mines are the most merciful options available. Chemical traps can tangle enemies up, melting them in blobs of horribly caustic acid, burning them with napalm, or freezing them with nitrogen.
    • Chemical weaponry deserves its own mention. The player can craft chemical pistols that shoot blobs of corrosive acid, nitrogen, or napalm; the aforementioned chemical traps have a similar array of options. The player can also use gas-based weaponry if the fancy takes them, either poisonous or atomized nitrogen.
  • Conditioned to Accept Horror: Most of the residents of Southern Underrail view circumstances that would horrify present-day humanity as being routine and unremarkable. Junkyard has a resident Serial Killer, Ol' Chopper, who horrifically dismembers his victims; he's viewed as being more of a nuisance than anything else. Core City's economy runs off the Gauntlet and the Arena, both of which are brutal Blood Sport attractions that kill dozens of people on a daily basis. This trope is discussed by Marcus and Ladelman in the Expedition DLC, where the two have several conversations on the value of human life. Marcus, being from the more-civilized North Underrail, is a Family Man who is Happily Married, while Ladelman, a dyed-in-the-wool Southerner, gleefully indulges in bouts of Black Comedy, routinely boasting about the women he's bedded and the skulls he's cracked. They get along famously in spite of this.
  • Conlang: The Gray Army soldiers you'll encounter while on the Dude's quest speak a weird mish-mash of slavic languages. Players who can speak said languages will be able to garner a rough idea of what they're saying, but there's no 1:1 translation. The Sørmirbæren speak a similar mash-up of nordic languages.
  • Cool Guns: Several iconic real-world firearms appear as thinly-veiled expies in Underrail. These include the Glück 17, Bieretta 99, W&S .44 Magnum, and the K&H MP6. Myles will describe finding what is very obviously an M1 Garand, but it isn't referred to by name.
  • Comically Small Demand: Several thugs in Junkyard block the passage towards the Protectorate Embassy, demanding a toll to pass. Taking them all on early-game is a tall order, but the toll they demand in order to pass is 5 charons. You've been given 250 by Tanner, and they never bother you ever again.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Downplayed. There are a fair number of shenanigans are going on behind the scenes, but even with these advantages, individual enemies will almost always be weaker than a well-built PC.
    • Hostile human NP Cs will nearly always have higher health than you will, even if you're a tank.
    • Enemies will hardly ever miss throws, in contrast to the player, who will be missing all the time unless you invest in Throwing.
    • Psionic enemies do not need to worry about Psi Reserves - they can keep using their psionics until they run out of action points. The only way to stop them is rare and expensive Black Dragon poison.
    • Enemies who have spotted you once don't need line of sight to find you again. Unless you enter stealth and stay out of their vision until their detection level drops below Orange, they'll path directly to you, regardless of whether they saw where you went.
  • Crapsack World: Zig-zagged. The setting as a whole is pretty grim, with humanity having been forced permanently underground by some unspecified disaster in the past. However, some parts are better off than others, edging nearer to A World Half Full.
    • The southern Underrail is unquestionably this. Your starting station is small, poor, and half of the people work as security or as soldiers of a Tribunal of self elected councilors. It is also the best place in the South, where protection from crime and monsters is guaranteed and food is readily available. The rest of southern Underrail is largely lawless, with the only forms of order coming from the likes of Core City. Life is cheap, death is around every corner, and the only people who are trying to do anything about it are either the militaristic, expansionist United Stations or anarchist terrrorists who are cool with bombing an entire station of civilians to take out their target.
    • North Underrail is implied to be much better off than South Underrail, not the least due to the United Stations having brought order and actual government to it. Northern Cities, such as Hexagon and Dis, are mentioned as being pretty good places to live. This is seen most prominently in Expedition, through the culture-clash between the Southerners and the Northerners who work for Aegis Security. Marcus, in particular, finds Ladelman's "don't waste your time or it'll waste you" philosophy almost incomprehensible, because the idea of human life being as cheap as it is in the South makes no sense to a man raised in the North.
    • Similarly, Western Underrail - while never actually seen outside of Dude's second quest - appears to be unified under a strong, nationalistic government with a well-armed military. Available lore suggests that they have a stable society and economy, which is more than the South can say. On the other hand, their status regarding human rights issues and other important social problems remains unknown.
  • Creating Life: The wildlife you face in the Black Sea are all descended from lifeforms genetically engineered by New Frontier Technologies. They were intended to give the Black Sea a functional ecosystem. Unfortunately for you, it worked like a charm!
  • Critical Hit: Attacks have a small chance to crit for at least double damage. Certain feats and equipment can increase either the probability of attaining a crit, or the maximum damage dealt.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Quite a few builds suffer from this trope. As a general rule, even the most finely-tuned characters will have weak spots; as an example, full Psionic players have a great number of options for handling most enemies in the game, but few for handling robotic enemies. Robotic enemies resist most of the direct damage sources available to Psionics, are immune to most forms of crowd control, and No-Sell nearly all Thought Control abilities. Fortunately, the game gives you wiggle room to work around these issues with Bear Traps, Caltrops, Throwing Nets, and Grenades, which anyone can use, and which are universally effective.
    • Special mention to the Cylcop's Eye. A unique set of goggles that booosts the damage dealt by the Plasma Beam psychic ability but limits you to a single psionic slot at a time.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Certain builds revolve around dishing these out on a regular basis. Want to make an enemy's own shadow strangle them to death? Make them go insane and attack their friends? Cover them in acid and then blow them up with an incendiary grenade? Bait them into stepping on a Bear Trap and then decapitate them with a machete? Poison them? The list goes on and on, and that's not even getting into what the fauna of Underrail will do to the unwary.
    • All of the above pale in comparison to the Mutagenic Goo developed by BioCorp. If you're lucky, you'll die horribly. If you're not, you'll go through the same amount of pain, and then turn into a biologically immortal, near-mindless mutant with acid seeping from every pore. If you're extremely unlucky, you'll keep your mind as all of this happens, leaving you a twisted, acid-soaked wreck who's so freakishly disfigured that everyone else in the Underrail will try to kill you on sight. While exploring derelict NFT facilities in the Expedition DLC, you'll find several New Frontiers Technologies Marines who killed their comrades, and then shot themselves, rather than suffer the effects of the mutagen Bio Corp was freely shelling them with.
  • Deadpan Snarker: You can play as one if you're so inclined. You'll find no shortage of smartasses around Underrail to engage in Snark-to-Snark Combat with, either. This trope is played to the hilt with the bartender at the Hanged Rat, who will trade insults with you but not much else.
  • Deflector Shields: Personal energy shields can be found around mid-game and are decent for protection. How well they absorb damage depends on the impact velocity of an attack. Lasers, bullets and explosions are safely deflected, while crossbow bolts and melee attacks are able to penetrate or completely negate shields entirely.
  • Design-It-Yourself Equipment: You can build most items in the game with components/ingredients you find in the Underrail, sometimes at a lower cost than the complete examples sold in shops. At higher levels and with the right feats, it is possible to create weapons that are far superior to any that you can find in the game, including unique weapons.
  • Determinator: Abram is a mutant from Depot A. Most of his fellow mutants spend their days either wallowing in their awful condition, trying to kill any unaffected humans they see, or both. Abram, on the other hand, has become one of the Oculus's top operatives, despite the constant, horrible pain his condition has left him in.
  • Developer's Foresight: And how!
    • If you seek South Gate Station's support for the Black Eels during the last stage of their questline after Gorsky has left for Core City, he'll be absent from the ensuing meeting, and several people comment on how his input would've been valuable.
    • There are quite a few pieces of unique dialogue that can only be seen by pickpocketing items NPCs would otherwise use during dialogue; some entire quests can be skipped outright this way. You can pickpocket Captain Svana's flask of Outwork, changing her initial dialogue from taking a gulp of it to searching for it. If you pickpocket the key to the maintenance hut from the Core City Dockmaster, instead of demanding a bribe to let you in, he'll only mutter to himself about having misplaced it. You can also completely bypass having to do Dockmaster Silas's questline by pickpocketing his key. If you pickpocket the evil technician's pirate communicator and give it to Marcus, Professor Oldfield won't be kidnapped.
    • If Dockmaster Silas died during the shoot-out with the Black Eels you can ask Colton for the reward instead.
    • There are many faction leaders and unusual characters you can take the ACoNR to. If you still have it with you when should meet the Faceless Commander, he will actually refuse to take it, on the grounds of having no way to verify what it even does. You can also take it to Ezra after Tanner leaves South Gate, with Ezra having unique dialogue that strongly hints at his true identity.
    • If you steal a Jet Ski from Ray's shop without being caught on camera, an incredibly tricky feat, he has unique dialogue discussing the theft when you meet him for the first time. You can then proceed to take him for a ride by telling him you saw the thief. The game presents you with a staggeringly lengthy list of variables to describe the imaginary hijacker with; you can say he was a naked, muscular midget with tattooes and neon blue hair, or an eight foot tall black bodybuilder in a spandex suit, or..
    • If a psionic character shares a drink with Evelyn, you'll be afflicted with Black Dragon poison, shutting down your psonics and preventing you from easily frying her with your brain.
  • Devious Daggers: One popular build is a sneaky melee assassin. You'll be able to carve up humans and most animals without even raising the alarm, but you're going to have a tough time of it if you ever need to handle robotic opponents.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: Twice.
    • The first time is at the end of the main questline. The ever-evolving immortal being that is Tchort? It's the final boss, and you kill it.
    • The second time is at the end of the Expedition DLC. If the player has found the Ethereal Torch, they can destroy the Shadowlith with it, effectively eliminating the conduit for an Eldritch Abomination that has already corrupted the natives.
    • Steve Heave was able to damage one of the monoliths with only his pickaxe and cut a shard out at the cost of being burnt to a cinder.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Tanner's plot would have gone off without a hitch if it wasn't for an unexpected earthquake derailling his whole plan and kickstarting the plot of the game
  • Dimensional Traveller: The Godmen...maybe. The Player character can become a mild version of this in the expansion by doing a quest that enables them to see and use dimensional rifts to travel through the game world.
  • Doom Troops: The Chemical Assault Unit, the Protectorate's most elite soldiers, fit the trope to a tee, especially the bit about using chemical weaponry in combat.
  • Down in the Dumps: Most settlements, but especially the Junkyard.
  • Dramatic Unmask: If you complete his questline and meet him in the Oculus, Abram will unmask himself if you prompt him about his medical condition and have sufficient persuasion. It REALLY isn't pretty.
  • Dressing as the Enemy: Male characters can do this to trick the guards in the Gray Army base, allowing you to get through without bloodshed if you have decent persuasion or stealth skills. Female characters will immediately be spotted, though.
  • Dude Magnet: Numerous male characters will hit on a female PC, including Ethan Lanford, who can be sweet-talked into giving you a free lesson in Temporal Manipulation.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect??: Becoming the Invictus, the champion of the Core City Arena, earns you no respect whatsoever. Even if you try to use it in Core City they either don't recognize you, or hate the bloodsport in the arena, and therefore, you.
    • Averted by Ladelman in the expedition. He is a huge fan of the Arena and has a lot of special dialogue available only to the Invictus. He even shows the player his special merchandise, when otherwise you would need a high mercantile check.
  • Door to Before: Generally Averted, you will be doing a whole lot of backtracking in this game. They do occasionally pop up here and there, when the player would normally have to backtrack through multiple enemies, such as in the Rathound King's Lair or the Nexus of Technology. Tropes Are Tools, though, as excessive backtracking is a common critique of the game
  • Elaborate Underground Base: Basically the whole game.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Tchort turns out to be one, with the ability to summon a variety of tentacles. Uniquely for the trope, there is a possible - albeit unconfirmed - scientific explanation for where it came from. It's also heavily implied that Flottsørmir, the entity worshipped by the Sørmirbæren, is one, and that it uses The Shadowlith as a conduit.
  • Elite Mooks: The Protectorate's Chemical Assault Unit, the Protectorate's most elite special operations unit. Their members are almost universally Sociopathic Soldiers, and they have a reputation as The Dreaded.
  • Energy Weapon: They come in three flavors - Electric, Laser and Plasma.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: The Butcher found in the Lurker Base will get murderously angry if you ask him whether his mother didn't love him as a child. Note that said character is introduced in the middle of carving up a human body, in the middle of a freezer full of (probably) human meat.
  • Exactly Exty Years Ago: Wordof God states that the Underrail Earth was in an "early space age" prior to the catastrophe which itself occured about 200 years prior to the start of the game, so the game might be set anywhere from late 21st century up to 23rd.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Asking Twitch about the Arena will net you this gem of a line.
    Twitch: Oh, joy - it is Mark the Impaler! How typical of him: he's impaling a man.
  • Everyone Has Standards: Quite a few characters who, themselves, hate the Protectorate and the Core City Oligarchy still view the Free Drones as worse. Sneaky will tell you that even being suspected of being a collaborator is enough to get you Chained to a Railway while your family is Forced to Watch; Buzzer, who actually approves of their fight against the Protectorate, still ends his spiel by saying that they should bury the Protectorate in a hole, crawl in, and pull the hole in after them.
  • Experience Points: One of the most interesting parts of the game's mechanics is the alternative way of gaining experience through the Oddity system, that rewards exploration instead of combat grinding, though a few of them can only be obtained through combat (regular XP through combat is also an available option).
  • Fantastic Slur: "Drop off, pipeworker!", a favorite among the gangsters in Core City.
  • Final Boss: Faced in the Deep Caverns, the final boss of the game is Tchort, the entity worshipped by the eponymous Institute. Doubles as a Flunky Boss and Puzzle Boss; unless your build is absolutely tearing the game a new one, you'll probably need to take out the Mutagen Tanks located around the arena in order to have enough breathing space to kill the boss itself. This also slows down the boss's regrowing tentacles considerably.
  • Flesh Versus Steel: Played with - The Tchortists put emphasis on biological enhancement of humanity with technology as tools separate from the user, while the Faceless are cyborgs that use serums to enhance their biological side in combat.
  • Foil:
    • The Tchortists and the Faceless are ones to each other, as mentioned above
    • New Frontier Technology acts as one to Biocorp in the backstory: Utopian Thinkers and Artists whose corporation specialised in terraforming. They believed that art was inseparable from science and designed machines that looked like ornate statues compared to the utilitarian boxes employed by Biocorp. Their equipment was much more advanced then Biocorp, but tended to be a one-off Super Prototype like the Sonocaster and Tesla Armor.
  • Foreshadowing: There are several hints that Tanner is not all he appears to be.
    • When asked about Core City's arena, he will end his description by stating that "Humans were always fond of blood sport," in a way that heavily implies he isn't one.
    • He has a clear perspective on human history that most people in Underrail should logically lack, seen when he describes the formation of the Protectorate as being 'inevitable,' and his statement that it could have turned out much worse.
    • Despite spending all of his time underground, he never takes his goggles off, keeping his eyes hidden.
    • Has True-Sight, which usually can only be found on robots and is extremely rare among non-robotic beings, one of whom is Six/Rahm-Umbra.
    • If you make him hostile, he is invincible in combat and deals damage with a special energy attack. First-time players may consider it a quirk to "an important NPC" and don't think much of it, but players who finished the game will realize that this is exactly how Six behaves in combat.
    • If you tell Big Bret that South Gate's citizenship tests were a breeze, he'll remark that you're either lying, or you're the next Tanner. One ending has the player take Tanner's newly-vacated spot as one of the leaders of SGS.
  • Fun with Acronyms: The ACoNR, which serves as the McGuffin driving Expedition's plot. Dude claims it stands for "Awesome Computer of Notable Roundness."
  • Future Slang: Both slang, and full-blown accents, help to further distinguish the unique dialects found around Southern Underrail.
    • Everyone uses "derailed" as a stand-in for "insane." Gene, the Bartender in Core City, uses "crossed the tracks" as slang for "went totally mad," referring to Heidi. "Hopper" and "Quaker" are equivalents to "coward."
    • In Core City, you can expect to be called a pipeworker or a zoner; the latter implies the insultee lives in Core City's favela, the Drop Zone, while the former is probably meant to imply they're trashy or scruffy. "Drop off" is roughly equivalent to "screw you," while anything that's suitably cool is "DOMINATING!" Zoning someone out is equivalent to kicking their ass.
    • Junkyarders are short on vowels, long on consonants, you dig? Male strangers are referred to as "jack," and female strangers as "sis."
    • D'pirates speak wif' lots o' abbreviation, an' they ain't big fer articles o' speech. Other pirates are jetters and mates, non-pirates are clods, Aegis Sec are bangas.
    • Foundry citizens speak more-or-less normally, but they're fond of describing things that are weak or vulnerable as being "friable." Northerners, especially Aegis Sec troopers, speak more formally and elaborately; Sec Troopers are fond of describing inadequate efforts as "unsat." The Free Drones refer to the Protectorate as "tin cans," due to their preference for heavily-armored soldiers.
  • Game Gourmet: The game has an extensive array of food and drink; they provide varying buffs, but also serve as worldbuilding, showing how humanity has adapted to the underground.
    • Grain-based bread is a thing of the past; instead, sandwiches are made with Rootbread, presumably made from ground-up roots. Mushrooms are ubiquitous in Underrail cuisine, and are used to brew incredibly potent beer. Canned meat and mushrooms are still a thing, with the added bonus of ionizing radiation to ensure absurdly long shelf-life,. Just about the only Underrail critter humanity hasn't found a way to eat are Cave Crawlers; otherwise, enjoy Rathound Skewers, Psi-Beetle Brain Soup, Cave Hopper Steaks, Burrower Burgers, and more.
    • At the Drag N' Drop, which is located in a different spot every playthrough, you can buy and drink several different mixed drinks. Examples include the Scrapperac, a play on the real-world Sazerac, the White Dude, a riff on the White Russian, and the Mindshroom Martini, which needs no introduction.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: The scavenger Al Fabet has the habit of picking up every item he can find, no matter whether he ends up barely able to carry it all. If you wait around in his general vicinity, he will start walking around with a very low FPS animation - the same effect applied to you when you walk around over-encumbered.
  • Genre Shift: Once you reach the Deep Caverns, the game suddenly turns from a relatively grounded post-apocalyptic scenario with cyberpunk elements into a full-blown Lovecraft Lite Cosmic Horror Story. As much as the game foreshadows this, the extent of this mood swing will still likely catch many players by surprise; it may also catch those who didn't find The Oculus, or couldn't access the Strange Pillars, especially off-guard.
  • The Ghost: Several Gladiators in Core City Arena are mentioned are mentioned several times, but never appear in person. This includes Dread Lord, who is killed offscreen by Carnifex so the latter can fight you instead.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: One of the new enemies you'll face in Expedition are ornery, waist-high Giant Crabs, and their even bigger cousins, the Colossal Crabs. If you use W2C rounds, you can also attack their weak points for massive damage; good luck getting through their carapaces with any other bullets.
  • Giant Spider: Coil Spiders, made deadly with potent electric powers.
  • Glacial Apocalypse: The Utility Tower found in Upper Underrail HEAVILY implies that this was what forced humanity underground centuries ago. It takes you up high enough to feel and see wind and snow, both of which are so deathly cold that they can kill you in seconds without protection.
  • Gray-and-Grey Morality: Many situations will leave the player having to choose between not so clear moral choices, given the amount of conflicting factions.
    • White-and-Grey Morality: Some choices also involves ones that deal as little conflict among factions as possible. As long as you have the right skill to do so.
  • Groin Attack: The Dirty Kick does just this - it is even more effective against male characters.
  • Harder Than Hard: DOMINATING, which makes enemies even stronger, and cuts selling prices even more.
  • Healing Potion: In the form of bandages and health hypos (similar to Fallout stimpacks).
  • Heart Is an Awesome Power: Persuasion and Merchantile. While little the skills can do at the beginning, pursuing them to go even higher will benefit each other mutually, reducing buying prices while raising yours significantly. Doing so will also make certain situations significantly easier, such as allowing you get a second freebie from Quinton for your next Metathermics skill, persuading the Rathound King to make amends with Camp Hathor all awhile revealing you the shortcut that directly leads to his lair from the cave entrance to his maze and/or convinced a group of angry zoners to leave a damaged tunneler drill for you to repair it yourself.
    • Crafting Skills also come out in the same area, especially when you find high-quality components that comes along with your playstyle.
  • Hidden Depths: Myles, the firearms merchant at Rail Crossing, is usually quite brusque, if not outright rude. He turns into quite the chatterbox if you get him going about old-world firearms, though.
  • Highly-Visible Ninja: Zig-zagged. A common outfit for sneaky people is a black overcoat, drawn up over the wearer's face, and complete with a pair of night vision goggles. However, the game takes place underground, where color shades beyond grey, brown and slate are rare, and the only natural light comes from bioluminescent fungi. This makes a black coat a much more logical choice for sneaking.
  • Homage: to mid nineties era of CRPG, especially the Black Isle ones.
  • Hub City: The Core City is the sole stable passage between Upper and Lower South Underrail, and is also a link to North Underrail.
  • Husky Russkie: Gorsky is likely one, going by his full name, which can be read in The Oculus.
  • Human Disguise: Tanner spends the entire game wearing an extremely realistic mask to disguise his true nature. He leaves it behind when he flees South Gate Station at the end of the storyline.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: There are several crazed lone cannibals, but the most prevalent example are the Lurkers. An entire organized gang of cannibalistic bandits, their base is a horror show of cannibalism and depravity, complete with a butcher hacking up corpses in the meat locker. Their combat dialogue often mentions their intent to eat the player character.
  • Immortality: Biological immortality is one of the effects of the mutagenic gas Old BioCorp developed. Wyatt, one of the people exposed to it, is still alive over a hundred years later, not having ever even needed to eat or sleep. Abram, too. The caveat is that you'll spend the rest of your extended lifespan in horrific pain from the acid seeping out of every organ in your body.
  • Inescapable Ambush: Stealth enemies love to ambush characters with lack of good perception. You can also invert this with the right build and most likely be at the other end of the trope on tougher yet dumber enemies.
  • Infallible Babble: Asking Dude to tell you something interesting will result in a variety of pseudo-lucid anecdotes about a variety of extremely strange topics. The more you know about the game's deeper lore, the more you realize that virtually everything he says is actually correct, even if he's Right for the Wrong Reasons.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: TiChrome is the second-best metal available for crafting melee weapons, and TiChrome melee weapons will never generate as loot or in shops. While you might occasionally find a set of TiChrome bars in high-quality merchants or as loot, to get enough to do much useful with you'll have to kill the Beast. They're eclipsed only by Supersteel, which is much more difficult to get.
  • Informed Equipment: Played With. While a character's appearance changes depending on the armor and weapon they have equipped, most weapons will look the same as any other weapon of the same category. Your Electroshock Tungsten Combat Knife looks the same as the low quality knife you were killing rathounds with at the start of the game. Your appearance also doesn't change with different head gear, leading to the awkward situation of you putting on some night vision goggles with your tactical overcoat, even when by the game's mechanics you're wearing a balaclava.
  • Instant Expert: Averted on the Skill point system, where every technical area of crafting requires a lot of level grinding before reaching a particular level where you can weld very tough, lightweight metal into an armor.
    • Played Straight on the Feat point system, where you literally become a doctor just after killing some Rathounds.
  • Invisible Wall: Completely averted by the underground setting. If a tunnel exists, you can go through... that is, if you can survive.
  • Karma Houdini: Ezra is almost-unquestionably one of the two people responsible for the incident that turned Depot A into a wasteland and mutated an untold number of workers into poisonous mutants. There's no way to bring him to justice without turning the rest of South Gate Station hostile; he can be confronted about it, but he simply denies it, and there's no further action you can take other than just shooting him in the face, thus pissing off the rest of the faction. Furthermore, information found in The Oculus confirms that this is probably the least of his crimes.
  • Killed Offscreen: Dread Lord is decapacitated by Carnifex before getting the chance to even appear in person, let alone fight you. Vivian in the JKK questline is abruptly replaced near the end of the questline. Her replacement claims she was exposed as a traitor and killed, although you never see any evidence that she's actually dead.
  • Killer Robot: Oh so many. Most still wander abandoned facilities killing everything that moves, while few others are used for security in wealthy Stations.
  • King Incognito: Garry the Informant is actually Carnifex, the previous grand champion of the Arena. He helps the player with their career because he desires a Worthy Opponent to bring him out of retirement.
    • Ezra is actually Anton Matveev, one of the top dogs of old BioCorp and certified son-of-a-bitch.
    • Kharon, the seemingly-benevolent ferryman you can encounter if you become a mutant, is actually Kirill Gavrilyuk - Apex Technocrat, immensely-powerful psionic, and former colleague of Anton Matveev.
  • King Mook: The Black Crawler is a unique death stalker that has been scaled up in size and deadliness. Fatso is likewise an oversized boss warthog who has been the bane of Camp Hathor's hunters.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: An available playstyle. It also comes in handy dealing with little harm towards others as possible in completing certain quests.
  • La Résistance: The Free Drones, an organization dedicated to fighting the Protectorate and the United Stations. Reasons for doing so range from fighting the Protectorate Junta to to opposing the very concept of the united Underrail with anything in-between. This being Underrail, The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized is in full effect, and it's up to you whether they're any better than the Protectorate.
  • Land of One City: The majority of communities seen in the game. This is probably excusable, given that the game takes place underground, where bigger cities are impractical.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Taking Motion in Core City may lead to a cutscene of the player character breakdancing in the middle of the war zone between the Faceless and Praetorian Security, shouting about how they're too important to die because they're "the chosen one". The baffled Praetorian Security troopers take bets on how long they'll last as the player character effortlessly dodges the incoming hailstorm of laser and plasma fire. Lunatics may occasionally reference a similar idea when fighting you.
  • Legend Fades to Myth: Humanity has been underground for so long that most details about what the Surface was like have faded into myth, at least in South Underrail. The Player Character doesn't recognize the wooden stock or grip on some of the old-world guns he finds; dialogue with Cap'n Coltrane has him refer to Octopi and sailing ships in the same way old Medieval tales speak about dragons; several characters will explain what trees and acorns were to the protagonist if you show them the A Con R. More-civilized areas of the Underrail seem to have better standards of education, however, as shown by Professor Oldfield and the Institute of Tchort.
  • Leitmotif: Not any individual characters, but several of the more notable factions have their own Leitmotif that plays in areas associated with them.
    • The Faceless have "Faceless", a Drone of Dread with a lot of electronic instruments and distorted digital murmuring, reflecting exactly how creepy they are, and their uncomfortable melding of technology and flesh.
    • The Underrail Protectorate has "Protectorate", a grandiose-yet-imposing Imperial March-esque theme that uses such instruments as marching jackboots and distorted trumpets to set the tone.
    • The Gray Army has "Gray Army Base", an over-the-top, nationalistic war march that is clearly influenced by tracks such as Hell March of C&C fame.
  • Living Legend: Carnifex, the greatest Invictus in Core City's history. For reference, most Invictuses only retire by going feet-first down the corpse chute in the Arena basement. Carnifex retired because nobody was able to kill him, and he was bored of curbstomping everybody who tried. He will live up to this reputation when you face him in the Arena.
  • Living Shadow: Doppelgangers created by the Bilocation Psi Power. They're invulnerable to all but one kind of attack and wail on their targets with psychic blows until either it dies or the spell wears off. Dude also claims that Crawlers are these. The Monoliths imply he's right.
  • Magic by Any Other Name: Zig-zagged. PSI abilities initially seem like this, in the grand tradition of sci-fi settings which want to include magic, but don't want to go full Science Fantasy. However, there is enough Applied Phlebotinum to make the idea of psychic powers plausible under the circumstances. Later in the game, it's revealed that the part of the brain which allows humans to use psionics was written into our genetic code by post-Singularity aliens, which arguably averts this trope.
  • McGuffin: The Cube. The only thing you learn about it for sure is that it's an extremely potent power source, and the Faceless want it back, causing chaos across South Underrail as they pursue it.
  • Medium Awareness: The Dude's advanced state of permanent intoxication and status as a dimensional traveler allow him to lapse into this at several points, but the most specific example is when he and the Player Character have an inebriated discussion on how doors in Underrail are basically indestructible.
  • Mega-Corp: Before the catastrophe that rendered Earth's surface uninhabitable, the planet was ruled by several of these, the T6 - Biocorp, New Frontier Technologies, Security Agency, Bionic Institute, Nucleus Corporation and Transcendix. The one with the most influence on the plot was Biocorp, who specialized in genetics and life-sciences. They were the ones that built the Underrail, and the original rulers of the whole place. The corporation's collapse sent the entirety of Underrail into turmoil, and only North and West Underrail have properly recovered.
  • Merchant Prince: The Three Oligarchs of Core City: The former research and security chiefs of a local Biocorp branch took advantage of Biocorp collapse and took over, forming CoreTech and Praetorian Security, and later a third party came and uplifted the Arena into the comercial success, forming JKK.
  • Mercy Kill: Expedition has you exploring the ruins of Lemuria, a metropolis built by one of BioCorp's rivals. Numerous buildings contain the corpses of New Frontier Technologies Marines who were exposed to BioCorp's mutagenic gas, and shot one another to avoid having to endure the torture of becoming mutants.
  • Mini-Mecha: Protectorate Dreadnoughts, combat mechs packing a chaingun, a rocket launcher and a large drill.
  • Mirror Match: The gladiators you'll face in the Core City Arena run the gamut of pretty much every conventional combat build in the game, such as gunslingers, psionics and crossbow experts. There are also a few oddballs in there, like Chemical Agent, who uses chemical pistols, or Master Exploder, who specializes in grenades. This means it's virtually a certainty that you're going to go up against a build very similar to yours at some point.
  • Modular Epilogue: Like in Fallout, the long-term consequences of your involvement in the various settlements, good or bad, is shown at the end.
  • More Dakka: Characters who invest into Guns can quickly learn skills that let them add more dakka to the Underrail. Assault Rifles are better at it than SMGs and Shotguns, but all three classes of firearm are more than capable of pouring out lead. If you kill three enemies with one Burst Fire attack in the Arena, you'll even be nicknamed Dakka Dakka by the audience.
  • Mouth of Sauron: The Mouth of Tchort is a being used by it for the sole purpose of communication. Naturally, it is weak in combat.
  • Multiple Endings: A given, with the Modular Epilogue. The game has two major endings for your character, which depends on whether you stay at SGS to become a councillor, or leave to travel north. There's a third hidden ending, achieved by completing Kharon's questline in Core City Sewers after becoming a Mutant. Your character sails to the Mutie Refuge in the Black sea and spends the remainder of their life there, safe and relatively comfortable, but haunted by memories of their mostly-forgotten past.
  • Multi-Melee Master: Characters who focus on Melee Combat can exemplify this trope, and the game design encourages it. Different types of weaponry are better at differing things.
    • Good Old Fisticuffs are fast, can be very damaging when built properly, and come with an array of fun tricks to make them even more devastating, like the ability to break bones with every hit. However, they are almost completely useless against armor.
    • Knives are as fast as fists are, but slightly more damaging; they come in three flavors. Serrated knives do less damage but inflict bleeding wounds, Daggers are weaker against mechanical resistance but do more damage to vulnerable enemies, and Combat Knives are all-rounders with no real strengths or weaknesses. While knives have more perks than fists do, they are completely useless against armor in contrast to 'mostly' useless.
    • Sledgehammers are slow but powerful; they can be incredibly devastating, even against armored enemies, and have an innate chance to stun. When coupled with electroshock generators, they make for an even better tool to bust up armored and robotic foes.
    • The Expedition adds Machetes and Spears. Machetes are middle-grounds between knives and sledgehammers. They're devastating against organic foes and effective against armored ones, but unless your character is exceptionally well-built, they have bad attack speed, limiting you to a few blows per turn. Spears are even better at piercing armor than sledgehammers, and have a range of two tiles instead of one, but are only slightly less slow than sledgehammers, and cannot stun. Both weapon types come with a new array of perks.
  • Mundane Luxury: During Expedition, Seeger can offer you an insulated flask of real coffee brewed with actual beans. Your dialogue options make it clear that such coffee is a kingly luxury in South Underrail, to the extent that one possible response is - in the game's words - to "gaze at it in awe".
  • Mutagenic Goo: Biocorp developed one as a means of next-generation genetic manipulation. It's workings are surprisingly well explained in one log as a clue to a puzzle that significantly weakens the final boss.
  • Mushroom Samba: You can go on one with The Dude. It allows you to fast travel. You can also take Motion in Core City, which will result in a variety of wacky happenings each time you do so.
  • Mystery Meat: The Junkyard Surprise is a rare random example of the trope, but beneficially and not so beneficially. It randomly gives you a Status Buff that makes you stronger, faster or smarter by simply eating the stuff but it can also make you weak, slow or stupid, all in 20 minutes.
  • Mysterious Past: What the protagonist did before applying for citizenship at South Gate Station is left vague. Some dialogue options involve Noodle Incidents that imply they might be from either Junkyard or Core City depending on player choice, but there's no concrete information available. It's worth noting that Junkyard slang is the only sort of slang the player character can regularly use in dialogue options, despite there being other distinctive dialects from around South Underrail.
  • New-Age Retro Hippie: The Dude plays this trope razor straight, despite living in a time period set at least several centuries after it was codified.
  • Nintendo Hard: Make no mistake, Underrail is an unforgiving game that takes satisfaction in watching you die over and over. It is strongly recommended you quicksave early and often and also consult the Underrail Build Forums to carefully optimize a character concept before you play and ensure that the game won't see your mutilated remains being sold off to a leering junkyard doctor with a necklace of human fingerbones.
  • No Blood for Phlebotinum: One easily missable bit of data mentions how prior to the Descent, various nations and super corporations engaged in wars over fossil fuels that killed millions.
  • Nominal Hero: The player can choose to be one, as befitting a Role Playing Game. Rahm-Umbra can be considered one, being rude, easy to anger, and willing to kill the player at the slightest perceived disrespectbut helps you stop Tchort and reveals Tanner as a fellow Godman and the Big Bad
  • Non-Indicative Name: Despite being called "Thought Control", said ability has no way to outright mind-control somebody. The closest you get is Enrage, which renders them berserk. This doesn't stop Ezra from mind-controlling the player if you ask him to teach you psionics and fail a will check.
  • Non Standard Game Over: Letting yourself be exposed to Mutagen D6 will result in you being transformed into a Mutant Hulk, essentially rendering you into a playable version of the enemy type you grew to know and love in Depot A. This is basically a delayed game over, since absolutely everyone in the game - barring other mutants - is now hostile to you. Don't go thinking you can just sail to the Mutie Enclave in the Black Sea, either, as you can't pilot a jet ski with those big, meaty claws. However, there *is* somebody in Core City Sewers who can help the player get there, leading to a unique Bittersweet Ending.
  • Noob Cave: The Omega Outposts. They contain numerous Rathounds, who most player characters will easily be able to kill, as well as small introductions to lockpicking and hacking. The Mushroom Cove also qualifies on difficulties below Dominating, as the game turns up the heat and introduces you to psionic enemies who should still be easy prey for most players. If you're on Dominating, on the other hand, the game will start throwing full grown Psibeetles and Rathound Alphas at you.
  • Noodle Incident: The protagonist's dialogue trees can reference several of these that give some hints at their background. For instance, you can claim that De Pacino was "bothering (your) mother" if you've already killed him before Lieutenant Stratford asks you to; when Dude says he's been having visions of you before ever meeting you, female characters can ask if you were fully clothed, and Dude refers to one incident involving Siphoners. On a much more serious level, the Depot A Incident, which resulted in dozens of civilians being turned into horrible mutants who live in constant agony; the only person who can tell you more about it is Wyatt, the only person who didn't become a mutant as a result. Ezra probably knows plenty about it, but he's not talking.
  • Not So Stoic: Gorsky is a military-looking hardass who was a high-priority target during SGS' conflict with Omega and makes it very clear he doesn't take shit from anyone, but once he leaves for Core City he reveals his actual roots as a less-strict and more foul-mouthed ex-gangster raised on the streets Core City, especially when he meets Dan.
  • Odd Friendship: Marcus and Ladelman from Expedition. Their outlooks on life and their views on morality are nearly polar opposites, but they're textbook Vitriolic Best Buds, and listening to their conversations throughout the course of the expansion pack will show that both Marcus and Ladelman are learning from one another's views and life experiences.
  • Offscreen Teleportation: The Dude, a strange-but-fun hobo who can be met at Rail Crossing, can do this. With the Expedition expansion pack, you can learn how to do it yourself by completing his second quest. The trope is enforced by all of the Rift locations you can use being in out-of-the-way areas where nobody else can see you.
  • Old Soldier: Gorsky fits the trope to a tee. Combat-hardened, battle-scarred and gruff, he's one of Tanner's most dangerous combat operatives. Information in the Oculus suggests he's probably a Gray Army veteran, at the least.
  • One-Man Army: You essentially are one, especially when equipped with a proper build to specifically clean a room filled with cyborgs, psychics, mutants and robots. This is eventually discussed in-universe, especially by the Protectorate/Free Drones and the Oculus.
  • Only Six Faces: There are a limited number of cameos in the game, so it's inevitable you'll run into a few duplicates. Gene, the bartender in Core City, lampshades the trope by commenting that people think he and Moe the street-cook look alike; they have the same cameo and model.
  • Optional Stealth: Depending on your build, you can either storm in guns blazing/hammer swinging (and suffer the consequences) or stealthily backstab or snipe enemies.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Subverted. You need a huge Persuasion skill to fool any guard worth their salt. A guard at Core City Docks will actually pretend to fall for it if you flash him a pass you stole from another guard, then reveal he was just stalling you while the other guards surrounded you.
  • Pet the Dog: The Grim Jetters are fearsome fighters who aren't afraid to send people who resist down under. But they do take pity on Todd, the last Lemurian, and accept him as one of their own and treat him fairly well despite having stunted mental development and no fighting skill.
  • Playing with Fire/An Ice Person: Metathermics Psi Powers, which range from throwing ice spikes and fireballs to creating special shields out of fire or ice.
  • Point Build System: Underrail has a complex skill system that underlie in a straightforward level system.
    • Every level allows an extension of 5 points of skill in each area with a provided count of 40 points.
    • Every 2 levels gives 1 point of feat that can accompany your character.
    • Every 4 levels gives the actual attribute point that substantially increases the accommodated skills you maintained beforehand.
  • Powered Armor: Metal armor can receive enhancements and secondary bonuses that make it behave like a Powered Armor (regeneration, health increase, higher damage).
  • Pre-Mortem One-Liner: The player gets the opportunity to drop these several times while confronting Cornell and the Acid Hunters.
    Protagonist: I'm your executioner, Cornell. It's time for that boat trip to hell.
  • Psychic Powers: Comes in four flavors: Mind Control, Psychokinesis, Metathermics and Temporal Manipulation.
  • Psycho Knife Nut: Ol' Chopper is a boss variant, wielding a deadly Kukri and ambushing unwary travelers so he can do exactly what his name implies. The Butcher in the Lurker Base wields a meat-cleaver, and Zaman wields a blood-soaked knife called "The Dehumanizer"; all of them are complete lunatics.
  • Rat Stomp: You wish. The first enemies players are expected to fight are rat-hounds, rats as large and fierce as wolves. Basic Rathounds play the trope straight, being little more than fragile Goombas, but Alpha Rathounds pack a nasty rending attack and far better stats. They come up to the player's chest; Ancient Rathounds are the size of gorillas, and so old their hide is thick enough to deflect bullets. Oh, [and they all come in packs. If you don't listen when NPCs tell you pack flares, the rats will stomp you.
  • Randomly Generated Levels: Downplayed. The levels themselves aren't randomly generated, but there are several sets of levels that will randomly be chosen and added to a given playthrough. These levels are connected to existing areas of the game, and some have their own quests associated with them.
  • Really 700 Years Old: Wyatt, the sole remaining resident of Depot A who won't try to kill you on sight. He's been around since the original incident that turned it into a poisonous wasteland, which was at least a century ago; the mutagens he was exposed to have apparently halted his aging process. Ezra, too, since he's one of the two people responsible for the same incident.
    • Dude used to be a high-ranking Biocorp scientist at Hollow Earth. This was - going by the wiki's timeline - 189 years ago.
  • Recursive Reality: Played for Laughs. One of the options on Evelyn's laptop is "Play Underrail: Expedition." It just exits the dialogue. Whether this means the rest of the game is actually your character sitting there playing as their own self is anyone's guess.
  • Retraux: This game is designed and plays like a mid-nineties Black Isle CRPG.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: The Free Drones may be opposing the United Stations, but they are not good guys. Even joining them requires the player to sentence Rail Crossing to death by sabotaging relations between them and the United Stations, and their questline culminates in bombing Epione Lab to take out the Protectorate's troop transport lines, killing an untold number of civilians in addition to the intended targets. Going by what some NP Cs around Underrail will tell you when asked about them, what the cell in Southern Underrail does is tame by the group's standards.
  • Rodents of Unusual Size: Rathounds are rats the size of wolves, about as vicious, just as good at pack hunting, and substantially more adaptable. They are a common enemy throughout the game, ranging from pathetic regular Rathounds to Rathound Alphas to Ancient Rathounds.
  • Rock Beats Laser: Energy shields are great at deflecting plasma shots and good against shrapnel and non-critical bullets. Simpler attacks such as crossbow bolts, sledgehammers or just straight up fisticuffs will partially or completely ignore them as shields work best against fast moving objects.
  • Running Gag: The player character insisting that they are the Invictus, and nobody believing them.
    • Every time somebody asks you about The Shard, and later the Ethereal Torch, you have the option of saying you found it in a barrel in lower Underrail. Hilariously, you can even tell Six this; he's suitably dubious.
  • Save Scumming: The game autosaves every time you enter an area AND keeps an extra autosave and quicksave on a buffer. With the many things that can go wrong, it is no surprise.
  • Scavenger World: Goes with the post-apocalyptic dwellings, but Junktown plays it very straight, while the rich Core City has manufacturing.
  • Schmuck Bait/Wrong Genre Savvy: At the very beginning of the game you'll be in a testing room with your teacher and a few lootable containers. If your first move is to loot the container, as you would be wont to do in most WRPGs, the teacher will pump you full of bullets before you can say "oops". Attacking most plot-critical NPCs at any point will generally also end badly for you, especially Six.
  • Seen It All: Discussing the Junkyard Surprise says it all.
    'The Protagonist: I hate surprises.
    Kareem: Me too.
  • Serial Killer: The Underrail being what it is, it's no surprise that there are a few of these to be found.
    • One is loose in Foundry. It's Evelyn, the lonely widow; should male characters take her up on her offer of a drink, they'll find this out the hard way. You can still escape and turn the tables on her, however.
    • Ol' Chopper is Junkyard's resident Expy of Jack The Ripper. If you kill him, you can claim his unique Kukri for your own. It says much about the setting that Junkyard's residents largely treat him as an annoyance instead of a horrifying, brutal mass murderer.
  • Sequel Hook: Several of them are set up by the end of the game.
    • Ezra's true identity as Anton Matveev, and his comeuppance for the Depot A incident; there are no options that allow you to call Ezra out directly, but you can tell Abram that Wyatt is still alive and living in Junkyard. Abram says he will personally investigate this as soon as he can.
    • The ACoNR; while you can choose who to give it to, nobody in the game has the capacity to open it.
    • The Faceless Medallion, which you receive for killing Tchort and staying neutral to the Faceless; it presumably has some purpose in their society, but there's nothing to do with it in-game.
    • Six asks you to follow him North in pursuit of Tanner; the player can choose to do so or stay at South Gate Station.
  • Shout-Out: Enough for it's own page
  • Shown Their Work: Constantly, especially if you are able to pass the various skill checks to unlock more background information. Reading the dialogue is a good way to learn things about how leather is tanned, what chemicals merchants use in their trade, what the effects of drinking mineral oil are, and quite a lot more eclectic trivia related to whatever skill has enough points in it.
  • Sinister Geometry: The Mysterious Pillars beneath Silent Isle. They possess a strange psychic influence that causes Doppelgangers to appear out of the darkness of the island. With the right score in Will and Mind Control, you can learn Bilocation from it. The Alien Monoliths are even more prominent examples, and especially the Shadowlith.
  • Sinister Subway: Due to the underground setting, this subway spans nearly whole game, and even some cities given that they are built into subway stations. Needless to say that the dangerous parts and "dungeons" are this in spades.
  • Skill Scores and Perks: Actually, skills and feats.
  • Smoke Out: The Vanishing Grenade, sold exclusively in the Oculus, lets you do this; you instantly enter stealth, and all action points are converted to movement instead, allowing the player to make a tactical retreat if they're sneaky enough. You can also do this by flashbanging every active enemy, which allows you to manually end combat and sneak away before they recover.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: Especially conspicuous in a game this unforgiving. Several areas in the Deep Caverns are full to bursting with high-quality crafting components, batteries, ammunition and medical supplies in case the player came there without stocking up beforehand; you'll need all of it to take out Tchort .
  • Spike Shooter: Burrowers. Though their damage per hit is negligible, the real pain comes from their poison.
  • Spiritual Successor: To the classic Fallout games and many other RPGs with tactical combat such as Jagged Alliance. The game's premise is heavily influenced by Metro 2033, but the visual design takes much more from Fallout, as does the combat. The story is a distinct exception, largely doing its' own thing and avoiding the tropes associated with the two previously mentioned titles. It's never specifically stated what rendered the surface uninhabitable, but it doesn't seem to have been nuclear in nature. The Utility Tower strongly implies that the surface is locked in a Glacial Apocalypse; possible reasons range from "climate change" to "the Earth was knocked off-course by an Alien superweapon as mere collateral damage".
  • Story Breadcrumbs: The game won't tell you a whole lot outright; you'll have to do some digging if you want to really understand what's going on. Finding the Oculus helps a LOT.
  • Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: The Godman Six/Rahm-Umbra posess technology that, according to the Faceless, completely TRIVIALISES theirs. The Faceless already border on being transhumans, and their tech level is leaps and bounds above anyone else in the setting. Six demonstrates this trope several times by teleporting freely around, something only the Player and Dude can otherwise do - and then, only with the aid of a preexisting rift.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence: The player can fall into this. Because of the gameplay having powerful armor is no guarantee for your survival, resulting in Power Armor wearing players getting ripped apart by physic beetles they thought were beneath them.note  Enemies show this as well: They never retreat and always attack.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • A character build focusing on pistols might find themselves outranged and outgunned by most human enemies using heftier firearms. It is doable, but you will find it very hardgoing. Remember in real life, pistols are just sidearms and aren't intended to be main weapons. This is now downplayed, since Pistols have received several buffs and gotten some potent feats of their own.
    • You can go off and explore the Underrail as you like, but there's a reason people usually don't- it's mostly a barren cave system, after all. You probably won't find any useful items or interesting trinkets out there, and even if you do, you'll have to contend with the native wildlife to get to it. There are quite a few dungeons and ruins to explore, but those places are generally abandoned for good reasons..
    • The game does not hold your hand when it comes to character building. Underrail has absolutely no issues letting you sink all of your skill points into persuasion, mercantile, crafting, and other non-combat skills, and then throwing you into Depot A. After all, somebody with no combat skills wouldn't last long in an abandoned junkyard full of radioactive waste and homicidal mutants.
    • You can try to use a sniper rifle in active combat if you want, but you're not going to get far; they're bulky, take most of your AP bar to fire once, and take a massive chance to hit penalty against anything that gets close to you. They're really intended for use against distant targets, or immobile enemies.
    • Bombing Epione Lab for the Free Drones does put a huge kink in the Protectorate's plans, but it also incentivizes their leadership to send in the Chemical Assault Unit in response to this enormous escalation in tensions.
  • Talking Animal: Oinko, the pig who lives in Drop Zone, is actually quite intellectual, and one of the most well-spoken characters in the game - maybe. You can't talk to him until you take Motion enough times to trigger the Crawler-Man scene, though; this will only happen after you've already visited Ditch the Zoner at least once, and never on the first time taking Motion. Leaving the room and coming back will have him revert to his usual porcine behavior, leaving it ambiguous if he can actually talk or if it was just a part of your Motion trip.
  • Talk Like a Pirate: Cap'n Coltrane, the ferryman at Camp Hathor, talks this way, despite living in a time period centuries after pirates sailed the seas, and long after mankind has largely forgotten there ever were above-ground seas. If you have sufficient Intelligence and Persuasion, you can get him to admit that it's all an act to draw in customers, based on stories of the surface world his grandfather told him. He doesn't even know what "timbers" are, but he knows the tourists love it when he shivers 'em. Surprisingly, the Grim Jetters avert this; they instead speak in a strange, heavy accent with lots of slang.
  • Techno Wreckage: Considering the setting, a lot.
  • Teleportation Misfire: While unlocking Fast Travel with the Dude's assistance, the two of you will accidentally wind up in a Gray Army base somewhere in Western Underrail - well away from where you began in South Underrail.
  • Transhuman: The Tchortists aim to become this, and the Faceless essentially already are. Bionic Institute, one of the T6 super-corporations, was designing biotechnological robots that were granted citizenship and treated as equals to their makers. BioCorp appears to have been working towards a more traditional "ascent through genetic manipulation" variant on this trope.
  • Those Two Guys: Marcus and Ladelman, from Expedition, exemplify both this trope and Vitriolic Best Buds. They have very little in common, and Marcus's "life-is-short-and-then-you-die" Southern Underrail philosophy is almost incomprehensible to Marcus, who is from the much more civilized North Underrail. They still get along very well.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: If you befriend the Faceless, their commander will explain their origins as human test subjects that were exposed to mutagen for scientific experimentation. It is implied through various tidbits of information that they rebelled after a mutant called Otis (who was hyper-intelligent and thus deemed a "success") led them in revolt against Biocorp.
  • Turn-Based Combat: Oh, yeah. You'd better get good at it if you want to stay alive.
  • Urban Segregation: The Core City has a large shanty town called the Drop Zone, and the ruling Oligarchs more or less ignore it.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: All factions vying to change the underground for the better view things this way. Considering how bad South Underrail already is, it's hard to argue that doing nothing is the superior option.
  • Violence is the Only Option: You cannot negotiate with the Sørmirbæren in Expedition. The only way to permanently stop their constant attacks on Aegis Sec's base is to go over there yourself and make like Anakin Skywalker until Yahota tells you that she sees no more activity. You can at least spare the defenseless women, but all other Sørmirbæren will be hostile the instant they see you, no matter what or where. Delving into the lore enough strongly suggests that this is because the Shadowlith has corrupted their minds so completely that there's no helping them; worse, they're actively trying to spread its' influence elsewhere.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Marcus and Ladelman, of Expedition, never stop busting each other's balls, but their conversations make it clear that they're fast friends.
  • Warp Whistle: Major settlements have either a dock where you hire ferrymen (or ferrywomen) to sail you instantly to a requested location, or an access to the subway train that do the same, for a small fee. Completing The Dude's second quest allows you to access Dimensional Rifts, allowing you to Fast Travel for free - barring the price of producing Juice.
  • Weak, but Skilled: One popular character build turns you into this: a stealthy crossbow and trap specialist who cannot hope to win a direct firefight or protracted melee, but by cleverly using gadgets, stalking and ambush tactics and the environment, you can pick off a large group of enemies without even getting scratched.
  • We Buy Anything: Thoroughly averted. Each merchant only trades in a specific category; food, weapons or medicine, for instance. Furthermore, each merchant is only interested in buying a certain number of any goods they do trade in; the arms dealer won't want to buy every single gun you have at once. Some types of goods can be sold in unlimited numbers, but only general-purpose ones that are likely to be numerous and cheap, such as bullets and shell casings. A comic relief NPC is Wrong Genre Savvy about this trope, and keeps pestering merchants around Core City, hoping they will buy things he randomly found in the trash.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer…: Your fists is potentially the ultimate example for some playstyles, especially with the following feats that support it. It comes very handy in several circumstances:
    • Need to kill a guy who's hiding behind an energy shield? Punch him!note 
    • Out of bullets or having trouble shooting rathounds that surrounded you, punch them.
    • Robot near its death but not enough action points to kill it with your sniper rifle, punch it.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: It is never made clear just where Underrail is situated, and the occasional hints seem to contradict one another. You can find a US car plate and a pile of American money, but the metro also features a significant number of Slavs - the Serbian diaspora in Core City Drop Zone and the Gray Army, who appear to speak a distorted Slovenian. The lore implies that nation-states were obsolete by the time of the Descent, and citizenship was based on employment by the T6 corporations.
  • Wide-Open Sandbox: The player character can go wherever he or she wants after leaving the first city, provided he or she has the skills to survive.
  • A World Half Full: It is a harsh world, but some places are surprisingly stable and self-sustained (the starting city is a good example), and life can be relatively safe for those who keep to themselves.
  • Worthy Opponent: The ending of the Arena questline. Garry the mysterious informant is actually Carnifex, previous Invictus; the Invictus has grown tired of fighting "fodder," who he describes as being effortless to defeat. Having watched your career up til this point, he views the player as the worthy challenger he's been waiting for to either bring him out of retirement or give him a warrior's death.
  • Wretched Hive: The Junkyard, the literal junkyard that grew into a small town with the increasing number of scavengers, is under complete control of two rival gangs, the Scrappers who control the supply by owning the best scavenger spots and the Black Eels who control the means of transporting said supply by owning the docks.
    • Core City has a favella hanging off the east side, and law enforcement refuses to go there unless the city is directly threatened. The inner city is no more safe: dissidents and undesirables have their lives ruined and are pushed out of the city while the nearby gladiator arena and obstacle course kills contestants and gladiators by design.

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