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O Wizel, white warrior, wielder of the ancient sword, grant me your power. Verto!
Take your standard Eastern RPG styled adventure, and slap a Guymelef in there as the most badass Limit Break ever.
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White Knight Chronicles is the first game for the PS3 by developer Level 5 Games. You are... well, you — the game features an insanely robust character creator, which was actually used to create every NPC in the game. However, the main character is Leonard, a seventeen-year-old boy of no real importance until, in an effort to save the princess of Balandor, he acquires the Incorruptus "White Knight", a seven-meter tall suit of white and blue armor. What follows is your standard RPG fare, involving princesses, evil conspiracies... and Humongous Mecha.

While not exactly critically acclaimed (reviews tend to be mixed, with some reviewers giving it 8-9, while others setting it firmly in a 5-6 range, the general consensus being that it's not really anything new, but it's not bad either) the game has an impressive cult following due to its long development time and interesting game play, as well as its distinctive Western RPG elements, including (but not limited to) free-roam gameplay, loads of sidequests, and a customizable avatar.

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A sequel was released in 2011, which includes the entire first game enhanced with all the new features added in the sequel. Sadly, the online servers are now closed, but the game is good value for your money if you can find it.

See also White Knight Chronicles: Ancient Heart and Foreign Soul, a fan comic that serves as a more detailed telling of the story, and also gives the Avatar character a much larger role.

It has a character sheet that is currently under construction.


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This game provides examples of:

  • Adam Smith Hates Your Guts: Item Binding. To get the best items and Incorruptus parts, you've got to do binding. But to bind the best equipment, you need the exactly right bits and pieces of monsters or flora (most of which have random drop rates approaching the .000% range), or else you're screwed. So go buy a straw hat and a pitch fork, because you're going farming for a couple of days.
  • Advertised Extra: You. Despite the trailers and the fact that you, not Leonard, are the one mentioned on the back of the (sealed, so people can't see the intro in the manual) game box, be fully prepared to have your avatar stand in the background of scenes, nodding dumbly, with hardly anyone even addressing dialogue directly to him or her — if your avatar is even in the scene at all.
    • The Avatar does turn out to be the REAL main character in the second game.....if you're Japanese, otherwise you miss out on the last 3rd of the story and the main villain of the whole series (which is on disc and 50% translated, but will never be released in the west).
  • Air Jousting: Black Knight vs Ancient Dragon in the first game, Dragon Knight vs Netherwyrm and White Knight vs Black Knight in the second.
  • An Adventurer Is You: In regards to the weapon and magic disciplines
    • Sword — Jack of All Trades normally, can become a Scrapper-type DPS utilizing the Phantom Blade skill.
    • Longsword — Blademaster DPS
    • Axe — Combination Meatshield Tank and Blademaster DPS, focusing more on the latter than the former.
    • Spear — Meatshield Tank
    • Bow — Combination Ranged DPS and Mezzer, with a minor in Power Regenerator
    • Staff — Pretty much useless on its own. Becomes a Nuker Ranged DPS combined with Elemental Magic or a Healer combined with Divine Magic
  • And the Adventure Continues: The second game ends on one of these, setting up both the Avatar storyline (which may or may not make it State-side) and Emperor Madoras's survival of the Final Battle.
  • Anime Hair: Leonard has spiky hair for some reason.
  • Anticlimax: Both games sputter across the finish line when they finally get to their endings. It's particularly egregious in the second game, which feels like the ending of Act Two of a three-act story. Of course, it wasn't intended to be the ending—the west didn't get the full game.
  • Apathetic Citizens: For the most part, you'd never know there was anything wrong with the world just by visiting the towns.
    • Balandor's an interesting case. It's about as bright and cheery as it ever was the next day after the castle is raided, their king is murdered, and their princess is kidnapped. Stop to talk to a few NPCs, however, and you'll see just how freaked out everyone is. The only visible change, however, are that a few kids that were outside the day before are nowhere to be seen, and the Noble Quarter is closed off because of off-camera damage.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: This little exchange while on Redhorn Island near the climax of White Knight Chronicles 2
    Kara: He'll pay for manipulating me!
    Yulie: And for betraying Balandor!
    Caesar: And for killing my puppy! Okay, I made that one up.
  • Attack Animal: The Netherwyrm was made 10,000 years ago as a weapon that can fight forever without being killed or defeated. 10,000 years later it is still around, spreading its poison.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Brimflamme. It's huge enough to even dwarf the Knights.
  • Back from the Dead: Kara died at the ruins in the Dogma Rift but was revived by Father Yggdra because she still has a role to play.
  • Badass Cape: The White Knight, the Sun King, and Eldore sport these. The player can also buy or bind some pretty badass capes as accessories.
  • Badass Normal: Cyrus. Whenever he is not drinking or wallowing in self-pity he is seen in the midst of battle, tearing through hordes of enemy soldiers without magic or a Knight.
  • Beam-O-War: Kara's magic vs Ledom's magic clashing in blow and red light in the past sequence.
  • Beam Spam: The Farian navy literally rains energy spears when they start shelling the Yshrenian forces.
  • Becoming the Mask: This is the majority of Kara's character arc, to the point where it happens twice. Once before the game starts when she falls into the identity of General Dragias, and the Black Knight, and again when she becomes the Kara the party knows for much of the game. In the second game, it presumably happened a third time as Kara's been resurrected and playing protector for Miu, as a Farian general named Scardigne.
  • Berserk Button: Dragons don't like seeing their kin get attacked or killed.
  • BFG: The Act of God is a mountain-sized cannon installation.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: Grazel spends the majority of both games as the leader of the bad guys and does much posturing but the whole time he was a pawn of Ledom; lied to and deceived. He is put in his place once the true emperor of Yshrenia makes his appearance.
  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: The Greavers are giant insects.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Leonard and the gang arrive via air-shop to save Miu and Scardigne at the beginning of the second game.
  • Bishounen: At one point in Albana, during the first game, you're required to play as Leonard and walk around looking for information. One of the NPCs the player speaks to will hit on him. It's also lampshaded by Kara.
    Kara: You're all looks and no brains.
  • Black Eyes of Evil: Emperor Madoras combines this with gold eyes. He has golden irises and black sclerae.
  • Black Market: An underground auction house is located in downtown Greede. It's more of an auction than a market though and you need a pass to enter.
  • Blade on a Stick: The Dragon Knight wields a spear in contrast to the sword-using White Knight.
  • Blood Knight: Shapur greatly enjoys combat especially after stealing the Black Knight.
  • Bonus Dungeon: Vellgander. Madoras comes back to life after the plot of the second game concludes just to drag it out of the water and challenge you to clear it. It's Nintendo Hard.
  • Book-Ends: The first game starts (more or less) with Leonard picking up the White Knight's Ark from its pedestal to save Cisna. The second game ends with Leonard placing the White Knight's Ark back on its pedestal after being saved by Cisna.
  • Boss Subtitles: Each boss appears with its name to set the atmosphere, and maybe a title.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: To activate the Knight, a pactmaker has to recite a short incantation. Each Knight has a unique incantation but all of them follow this general structure "O name, descriptive title, X of the ancient Y, grant me your power. Verto!".
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: Hello? Oh, one moment please. Hey, Leonard, Yulie, and Princess Cisna? There's an evil midget and a giant Walking Tank strolling through the gate of your hometown. They're asking for you.
  • Cast from Hit Points: Inverted with the Knights, whose simplest of physical attacks eat up mana instead. At the same time, partially supported, in that if a Knight runs out of MP, they revert back to human form.
  • Cast from Lifespan: This is the only way actual Time Travel is possible in the White Knight Chronicles universe. Eldore sacrifices his youth as does Ledom to travel forward in time 10,000 years to be a guide for the re-awakened Pactmakers and Cisna.
  • Bunnyears Lawyer: Let's just say Fambroise doesn't give the impression of someone who is able to piece her own Knight together. She acts far too silly
  • Cat Girl: Fambroise is presumably of Farian heritage because she has cat ears.
  • The Cavalry: In spades in the second game. Both Faria and Greede come to Balandor's aid in the Final Battle against Yshrenia. First the Farian navy shows up to help break through to Redhorn Isle, and then the frickin' Demithor appears out of nowhere to help out too. Somehow it managed to shake Greede off its back before lumbering into battle...
  • Chainmail Bikini: Not all armors but some of them take on a more Stripperiffic form when worn by women. [[labelnote:e.g.]]The swordmage set worn by a man consists of black and purple armor worn over a dark brown full-body suit. The same set worn by a woman gets rid of the full-body suit, revealing the leg armor to be nothing more than a metal thong with kneesock-like greaves. The chest armor is omitted to make way for a big Cleavage Window which combined with an extreme case of Absolute Cleavage allows a generous view of the female character's bust. All in all, it gives the impression of the character being completely naked under the armor.[[/note]]
  • Character Customization: Not just your Digital Avatar, but your whole party up to a point. You can choose to make Leonard a healer but he'll have a much easier time with a sword or axe.
  • The Chessmaster: Ledom manages to play two sides of a war against each other in order to fulfill his own goals. It works. Flawlessly.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Two of them:
    • An Unlucky Childhood Friend one for Yulie who reluctantly accepts Leonard devoting himself to Cisna.
    • And a Victorious Childhood Friend one for Caesar and Kara. The fact that they're childhood friends is part of the reveal and they don't remember it much so its downplayed.
  • The Chosen One: The Chosen Five, specifically. [[spoiler: Apparently, every Knight already selected their pactmaker in the past. However, they still have to prove themselves worthy of being choosen.
  • Cool Airship: The Magi's Monoships, and the party's Shagna
  • Convection Schmonvection: Redhorn Isle, being the local Mordor, has this.
  • Conveniently an Orphan: The five Pactmakers. Being stolen from your parents, shoved inside giant suits of armor, and then shot forward in time 10,000 years will do that to you, though.
  • Cutscene Incompetence: Okay, granted there wouldn't be much of a plot if the heroes did everything in their power to save the princess during them. But would it kill them to at least try? It's funny and silly at the same time. Especially when they half-assedly "rescue" her, only to have the bad guys re-capture her two seconds later.
  • Cut Short: The ending to the second game smacks of this.
  • Dances and Balls: Gets crashed by the Magi and Pyredaemos.
  • Dark Magical Girl: Kara.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Caesar, Kara.
  • Demonic Possession:
    • How the Gigantes are created.
    • Emperor Madoras also hijacks Leonard's body.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Paraphrased by Madoras in the post-game of White Knight Chronicles II.
    • Also, if you die in battle, you can retry from the start of the area at the expense of EXP.
  • Design-It-Yourself Equipment: The Arc Knight. It's almost on par with Armored Core in terms of customization potential (once you unlock everything, that is).
  • Devil in Plain Sight: Kara gets away with this for the majority of the first game. She keeps getting increasingly blatant with her actions until it's painfully obvious that she's the Black Knight, yet the party is still shocked when they learn the truth.
  • Digital Avatar
  • Drowning My Sorrows: Cyrus.
  • Dual Wielding: The Sun King, Cyrus and every playable character who learns the Twin Blades skill.
  • Dude, Where's My Respect?: The Avatar
  • The Dulcinea Effect: Leonard for Cisna like you wouldn't believe. Somewhat alleviated if you consider they met extremely briefly years before.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Avatar must fight a few of these as part of the final Avatar Storyline quest.
  • Elemental Rock–Paper–Scissors: Fire beats Ice, and for some reason Ice also beats Fire. Likewise, Wind beats Earth, but Earth beats Wind.
  • Eleventh Hour Super Power: The Avatar gets his or her own Knight at the very end of the second game, just in time to go into the final dungeon.
    • While it's not overtly stated, the Arc Knight is the only Knight not tied to Emperor Madoras, and is thus the only Knight that is usable against the Final Boss when all the Yshrenian Knights are destroyed. Plot-wise, this allows for you to finally be the hero of the game ... and still get zero credit for it.
    • One of the theories behind the missing end-game content is because some gamers might have decided to wait till after they beat the game to try and get their Knight, Level 5 decided not to include the Arc Knight in the story at all.
  • Empathic Weapon: The Moon Maiden is shown to have a mind of her own and within the White Knight resides a Phantom that may or may not be Emperor Madoras.
  • Energy Bow: The Moon Maiden's bow. The laser arrows it fires are quite small but the effects are massive. One shot is enough to down one of Yshrenia's aircraft carrier sized airships.
  • Enigmatic Minion: Shapur, for much of the first game. The twist is, he's not conniving, just crazy.
  • Escort Mission: Most of the guests that join your party at random points can't die. If they do, it's considered a Game Over.
  • Everyone Went to School Together: The "Sinca Five": Leonard, Yulie, Caesar, Kara, and Setti, aka the Pactmakers.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Literally, in the second game—Balandor is able to function again once Princess Cisna's restored to the throne.
  • Evil Chancellor: Sarvain is to both sides! Not only did he manipulate and murder King Valtos; he also advised and helped Grazell set up the the whole plot to revive the Sealed Inside a Person-Shaped Can Emperor Madoras, only to toss him aside.
  • Evil Costume Switch:The White Knight takes on a more demonic form after Madoras took control of Leonard's body.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Shapur sports one of these for an unknown reason. A battle wound, maybe?
  • Failure Hero: Leonard fails time and again to rescue Cisna, though he achieves other heroic deeds in the meantime and succeeds at the end of the first game.
  • Failure Knight: Cyrus and Eldore. They handle their failures quite differently, though. Eldore leaps across time to forcibly redeem himself, while Cyrus becomes a wandering drunkard for a game-and-a-half.
  • Fetch Quest: Both games involve searching for items to complete an objective. These include Phibianacci's errands, the search for the Goddess statue, and collectiing the Insignias. There are also errand sidequests in general.
  • Flaming Sword: The Sun King wields two of these because "Sun king".
  • Flying Seafood Special: The fish-type mooks introduced in the sequel can fly, which means they can join air battles during war sequences.
  • Foreshadowing: Early in the second game, Miu advises against overusing the Knight's power because she senses something sinister beneath its metal surface and it only gets more obvious from there. It takes every chance it gets to remind you that something is very wrong with the White Knight.
  • Forgot About His Powers: This is at play a lot in the first game, particularly regarding the party's hapless attempts to rescue Cisna. Leonard (and Ceasar) often flat-out do not transform into their Knight forms until after the Magi throw a similarly sized Rent-a-Zilla out to keep them at bay.
  • For Science!: Framboise's Modus Operandi is to gleefully pursue scientific discovery, although she is also excited by the feather in her cap ("This will make my career!").
  • Fragile Speedster: Bow-wielders are typically the swiftest characters to act, and are not particularly tough. However, they make up for it with many useful support skills.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Framboise is a scientist Cat Girl who builds the Avatar's Knight.
  • Giant Spider: Though the game has some very liberal views on what qualifies as a spider.
  • Giant Mooks: In every area there will be giant enemies that pose a greater challenge (and offer greater rewards) then the smaller ones. They are clearly intended for Knight combat.
  • Glass Cannon: A sword-wielder who makes frequent use of the Dual Wield skill Phantom Blade forsakes the extra defense given by the small shields typically paired with swords in order to effectively double their damage output.
  • Global Airship: Zig-zagged like crazy. Once an area has been cleared, the party whiz back and forth from one end of the map to the other in the first game, on foot. The Shagna, the supposed Global Airship is acquired by the party at the end of the first game during the ending cutscene, and is only used in the second game as transportation at the beginning and end of the game.
  • Good Is Dumb: Invoked by the villains, and lampshaded by the heroes. The party, by its own admission, is notable for:
    • 1) Being entirely too trusting of otherwise untrustworthy characters.
    • 2) Being alarmingly short-sighted.
    • 3) Being incapable of properly rescuing people.
    • 4) Walking (at times knowingly) into incredibly obvious traps.
      • In fact, when they finally do do something smart, they have to hide it from the player because it would otherwise strain credibility.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic:
    • Not a single one of the main characters wears a helmet, and the only equipment available for your character's head are glasses. Then again, the only villain with a helmet is Draigas, and that's for [ concealing the identity of the one wearing the armor.
    • Averted in the second game had a special armor set for those who purchased the first run in Japan; the armor looked like the White Knight — helmet and all.
  • Henshin Hero: The knight ark's empowered their pactmakers to transform into Humongous Mecha by use of a transformation trinket an a special phrase.
  • Heroic Mime: The Avatar; he or she will grunt, groan, scream out the names of his companions if they're near death, and say "Verto!" when transforming, but is otherwise mute.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: The Demithor turns itself to stone in order to halt the advance of Garmatha and prevent it from crushing balandor.
  • Hero of Another Story: The Avatar does a lot of good in multiplayer mode, and thus outside the main storyline.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Averted. You have many different weapon-type skill sets to choose from for each character (although some characters can't use some specific weapon types). Your Avatar can use every type.
  • The High Queen: Cisna, in everything but title. Seriously, she's never technically crowned, even a year after her ascension to the throne, but is effectively in charge and beloved by her people for her benevolence and (implicitly) her skilled administration.
  • Horned Humanoid: The Farians. Men have deer-like antlers while the women sport ram-like horns.
  • 100% Adoration Rating: Princess Cisna is universally popular in Balandor.
  • Human Sacrifice: Kara's sister was sacrificed in order to fuse three Gigantes into one creature.
  • Idiot Ball: Leonard and the rest of the heroes spend most of their time in the first game asking the villains to release the princess, and then make no move to stop them when they make good their escape. This facilitates a game of tag to each area with Knight relics.
  • An Interior Designer Is You: The georama enables the player to purchase and design an entire town, but only until the server was shutdown.
  • It Began with a Twist of Fate: Leonard and co sneak into the palace on a whim. The guards just left the front doors open when they were delivering wine to Princess Cisna's ball. (No, seriously. That's how it happens.) Then he decides to rescue the princess from an assassin as the palace is under attack. Then he decides to take control of the incredibly powerful White Knight in order to defend her and his home town. Then, because he is the only one who can use the knight, he is sent on the quest of the first game.
  • Item Crafting: It's called binding and absolute necessity if you want to tackle quests.
  • I Was Quite a Looker: Origins reveals that Eldore was pretty damn handsome back in the day.
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: The sword discipline results in this, as it does not heavily favor any particular style of combat aside from having slightly more slashing attacks in its arsenal than piercing and smashing.
  • Jerkass Façade: Count Drisdal pulls this on his own son Caesar in a Thanatos Gambit to try and get him to act responsibly. He kicks Caesar out of his house in a fit of rage after learning he'd fashioned a (pretty damn good) replica of a statue that was responsible for him meeting his wife, more-or-less saying I Have No Son!. Then he goes and dies without ever reconciling with Caesar. Then Caesar finds a letter from him telling him he knew the statue was a fake all along, and he actually treasured it more than the original because it was Caesar's own handiwork, and he threw a shitfit because Caesar lied to him.
  • Jiggle Physics: The Succubi's breasts flap around all over the place. Also, characters (such as a buxom Avatar) in certain pieces of armor will also jiggle.
  • Jumped at the Call: Leonard immediately accepts the rescue mission; he understands his responsibility as a pactmaker and is smitten with the princess anyway.
  • Just in Time: A staple of the first game's plot. Even though the Magi have an airship, and heroes are on foot, and you're in a race against them to get to the next Plot Coupon point on the map, and heroes always arrive right as shit's about to go down, even if you've spent nine hours Level Grinding. It seems like a huge coincidence, until Belcitane straight up tells you he sits around and waits for you to finally show up because he needs you there because the aforementioned shit going down is all a part of The Plan]].
  • Kamehame Hadoken: Cisna, of all people, whips a magic beam of these, the posture and everything to fight and temporarily Madoras.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: Between Leonard's selfless heroism, devotion to Princess Cisna and the White Knight armor, he fits figuratively and literally.
  • Knight In Sour Armor: Eldore and Kara are heroic and all but they're also grumpy and sarcastic, respectively. In Kara's case, it's about as literal as Leonard's, one example up.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Osmund. His men would prefer it if his "plans" would include more sneaking and flanking and less "full-speed ahead" or "death before dishonour".
  • Legacy Character: General Dragias, whose current incarnation is Kara
  • Light Is Not Good: The Sun King is used by the villain, who has a god-complex.
  • Like a Son to Me: The relationship between King Valtos and Cyrus is one of a foster parent because the king took a shine to him when he was a boy. He even gives the guy an heirloom as he dies.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: The Black Usurper and Emperor Madoras both appear to hold up the first and second game's final dungeons, respectively.
  • Lost Technology: See all that stuff the Magi are using like the airships, tanks, attack drones, the flying fortress or the giant cannon? All of that is already 10,000 years old.
  • Loyal Phlebotinum: A Knight's Ark can only be used by its pactmaker and will violently reject anyone else upon contact. The only way to claim its power is to kill the current pactmaker and make a pact with the Incorruptus yourself.
  • Luckily, My Shield Will Protect Me: The White Knight gains a shield in the second set of ruins, which boosts its status.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Ledom aka Sarvain manipulated Grazel to seek the Knights and declare war on the world by convincing him that he was Magoras' reincarnation.
  • Magic Knight: Use of a shortsword deals less raw damage than a normal sword, but boosts magic stats.
  • The Medic: Divine Magic. Heals, buffs and status relief.
  • Maybe Ever After: Leonard and Cisna get a lot of ship tease but don't officially start a relationship by the end of the second game.
  • Merchant City: Greede is driven by commerce and populated by merchants. It's a rather cut-throat place.
  • Mordor: Redhorn Isle is the villain's stronghold. It is an island of sharp and gagged grey stone and home to a weaponized volcano
  • My Greatest Failure: His failure to prevent the king's death and Cisna's abduction hits Cyrus hard.
  • New Game+: The first game allows you to start a new game with all the items and gear (except storyline items) you have acquired and your level reset to 35. The world also features new chests which are filled with Guild Rank 7/8 weapons and gear that allow a smooth start into online questing. The second game let's you keep items, gear and levels but doesn't offer new chests like the first did.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability:
    • The Knights are indestructible, capable of routing entire battlefields alone. The Sun King takes it a step further as it is even impervious to the attacks from its fellow Knights. Until you get Falcyos.
    • The Netherwyrm as well. The "deathless" part of its boss subtitle wasn't just for show.
  • Nintendo Hard: While the game's main storyline range from easy to moderately difficult, the high Guild Rank quests will slaughter you if you aren't careful. Vellgander takes it Up to Eleven.
  • Not-So-Harmless Villain: The Magi were largely derided as a backwards-looking kooky cult ... before they launched a sneak attack on Balandor that decapitated its leadership.
  • Not Quite Dead: Madoras survived his conflict with Mureas in the past and Cisna's final attack at the end of the second game. It takes the Avatar to face him a third time.
  • Obviously Evil: Belcitane, Shapur, Sarvain are also clearly bad news. Grazel also abandons any pretense of, ah, well, not being evil in the second game when he shows up in black spiky Evil Overlord armor. Caesar even jokes about them not bothering for "moral grey" in the second game.
  • Ominous Floating Castle: The flying fortress Garmatha is a mix between this and Floating Continent because it is very scary and very big.
  • One Game for the Price of Two: Inverted. The sequel includes an Updated Re-release of the entire first game (with the second's graphics and gameplay), making it two games for the price of one. That said, the second game reuses every location from the first game with only six new visitable locations, so the Enhanced Remake of White Knight Chronicles I came about by default.
  • One-Man Army: Every pactmaker is easily worth an army on their own as demonstrated by Shapur who conquered Albana thanks to the power of the Black Knight.
  • One-Winged Angel: Every named character and mook who has a summoning card can and will do this. Eldore notes that this is typically fatal because the card and its creature eats the user's soul.
  • Orcus on His Throne: Grazel spends the majority of the second game sitting on his enormous Cool Throne and gloating over the puny efforts of his adversaries. He only gets off it once to assault Balandor and then retreats to it again.
  • Perpetual Molt: The Black Knight is constantly shedding feathers whenever it busts out its wings.
  • Pimped-Out Dress: As a princess, Cisna has a rose colored dress with white gauze trimmings As queen, she has a dress that is practically a Battle Ballgown.
  • Poisonous Person: The Netherwyrm constantly emanates a purple mist that is the cause of a deadly sickness called Pyrexia.
  • Prolonged Prologue: Not to the extent of, say, Kingdom Hearts II, but it still takes on average about two hours to get from the start of the game to the title screen.
  • Prophecies Are Always Right: To the point where Eldore knew when, where, and how the whole damn plot was going to start because of an incredibly explicit prophecy.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child:The Ancients used newborn infants as the first Pactmakers
  • The Quiet One:
  • Rags to Riches: Cyrus started out as a homeless orphan and worked his way up to captain of the castleguard. End credits seem to suggest that he has taken Sarvain's position.
  • Really 700 Years Old: All of the original five pactmakers, and Sarvain/Ledom were put into stasis ten thousand years ago.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Kara, once she's cleansed of the Black Knight's corruption, dies from a backstab. She's back in the second game as Scardigne.
  • Redemption Demotion: Kara is less powerful as a full hero. Though she comes back in the second game, she spends much of her time as Scardinge, so you can't change her equipment aside from her weapon, and she loses her ability to transform into the Black Knight. Not that you could use it in the first place.
  • Reincarnation: Princess Cisna is the reincarnation of Queen Mureas of Athwan.
  • Reluctant Warrior: The Moon Maiden refused to take further part in battle and sealed herself inside Father Yggdra. She changes her mind for Yulie.
  • Retcon: Happens in-game. Initially it appears that Kara killed King Valtos in the guise of General Dragias, making her look like a sociopath. It's later revealed that while Kara is General Dragias, she wasn't the Dragias that killed Valtos. Who was really in the armour at the time isn't revealed until the second game. And, surprise! It was Evil Chancellor Sarvain, the guy everyone's always hated anyway.
  • Retired Badass: The legendary mercenary "Iron Fist" retired from his job and now works as a wine merchant in Balandor.
  • The Rival: The Black Knight to the White Knight.
  • Rocket Punch: The strongest attack of the Golems is launching their fists.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Royals are a diligent bunch in this game. Handling administrative affairs, fighting evil armies and disease spreading AttackAnimals is all in a day's work for them.
  • Samus Is a Girl: The Black Knight is none other than Kara. She does it again in the sequel as General Scardinge.
  • Save the Princess: The plot of the first game is rescuing Princess Cisna, who has been abducted by the Magi.
  • Say My Name:
    • Leonard — Princess!
    • Princess — Leonard!
    • Leonard — Cisna!
    • Characters will always scream out another character's name if they reach HP Critical.
  • Self-Disposing Villain: Shapur is outraged at Madoras taking the Black Knight's power away and so he lunges at Madoras' evil looking sphere of energy. This vaporizes him.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Madoras' soul is locked in the five Knights, but mostly inside the White Knight. He can only be released if they are all brought together. This happens at the end of the second game.
  • Sequel Difficulty Drop: The first game isn't exactly difficult, but Origins is very very easy, and even for the more difficult bosses, the strategy of "add more + to your equipment, and go into Power Ranger mode before you die" will get you through them.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: The story mode in the sequel is much harder than in the first game. Monsters are more numerous (including giant mooks), have more HP, hit harder, and your final line of defense, the Knights, are much weaker and there are several stretches near the end of the game that leave you without any Knights at all.
  • Sequel Hook: Both games end on one:
    • The first game ends with Grazel's declaration of the New Yshrenian Empire, and Cyrus and his knights drunkenly stumbling towards the Farian boarder.
    • The second game has two: the setup for the Avatar Story, and Madoras turning up alive and well.
  • Shifting Sand Land: Lagnish Desert is a perfect example, as an exploration area of sand, cliffs and cacti, which is encountered after the beginner zone of the green hills.
  • Schizo Tech: The world as a whole is set in medieval european fantasy but the city of Greede seems to be in the middle of the industrial revolution, Yshrenia's army is flying around in giant airships while deploying tanks and attack drones on the ground and the farians outfitted their ships with beam weaponry.
  • Shoulders of Doom: Every Knight and some heavy armors have wide and pointed pauldrons.
  • So Long, and Thanks for All the Gear:
    • The first game does this, as Kara and Eldore are the only two playable characters who never get (usable) Incorrupti.
    • Thanks to a mounting series of plot contrivances, there's a good ten-hour stretch of the second game that leaves you without any character who is able to transform into an Incorruptus. Cue several vicious boss fights.
  • So Proud of You: King Valtos assures Cyrus that he has become a fine knight and soldier with his last breath.
  • Spikes of Villainy: Grazel is seen rocking these in the second game, which make him look more warrior-like than his robes in the last game. General Dregias has them too, to a lesser extent in the first game.
  • Spiritual Successor: To Level-5's unreleased True Fantasy Live Online, from which it (probably) borrowed its character creation system.
  • Split Personality: Setti created Grazel as a reaction to Medius trying to kill him.
  • Sticks to the Back: This is played straight with longswords, two-handed axes and spears. When wearing certain form-fitting pieces of armor, said weapons even levitate visibly away from the character's body a slight bit.
  • Stone Wall: The spear discipline. It's designed to be used in tandem with large shields and the skillset is packed with status buffs, things designed to draw aggro away from other party members, and very little in terms of major damage.
  • Squishy Wizard: The staff discipline. It's the only way to really make the most of both types of magic offered, but you're not going to be doing much else.
  • Super-Power Meltdown: The Black Knight goes out of control creating the Black Usurper when Shapur murders Kara and steals its Ark from her. He manages to get it under control after he's defeated, but his mental health takes a huge hit from that point on.
  • Sword Beam: Three attacks in each of the axe, short sword and long sword skill trees are blade beams. White Knight, Black Knight and Sun King can do this as well.
  • Sword of Plot Advancement:
    • Talion,the only sword that can properly damage the Knights' armor
    • The sequel gives us the Sword of Falcyos, the only sword able to damage the Sun King, who is immune to all other Knight weapons.
  • Take Your Time: This is at play through both games, but it becomes inescapable at the end of the second game when you are given the opportunity to walk away from the Final Battle for the fate of the world while it's raging around you to go do sidequests and run errands for the peasantry.
  • Telepathy: With the Dragon Knight's Knight Arc Caesar gained the Dragon Sight which lets him look into the hearts of people, revealing their true colors. It's not fullblown mindreading though and some people can block it.
  • Temple of Doom: The Dogma Rift Palace is the final dungeon of the first game and the resting place of the Sun King armor
  • Tin Tyrant: General Dragias is a leader among the bad guys and is always wearing full body black armor in a menacing design because that is his purpose.
  • Time Skip: Between Part I and Part II. Cisna says that a year has passed since Grazel reclaimed his ark and declared that he and his followers were the second coming of the Yshrenian Empire.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Yulie, Cisna, and Miu in the sequel. They become a Knight, a Queen, and an Archduchess respectively.
  • Time Travel: The Retrospecticon allows Leonard and the gang to go into the past. They find that they can't actually change history, but they can take objects with them back to the present.
  • Transformation Is a Free Action: Played with as you can still get hit while performing the incantation, up until when the user says "Verto!"
  • Transformation Sequence: Everyone who uses a Knight gets an animation where they take up the armor and become the knight.
  • Transformation Trinket: Each Knight has one which acts as proof of the contract between Knight and pactmaker.
  • Traitor Shot: Sarvain is introduced with one of these, for gods sakes! So it's not surprising who he turns out to be, and who he killed. Kara also gets a lot of these in the first game.
  • Turns Red: Every Giant Mook except for the golems. Those turn yellow instead.
  • 20 Bear Asses: Lampshaded by a Farian scholar who is baffled by human behaviour.
    Fidel:"Holy Walnuts! You did it! You went right out and brought me a bunch of random crap, even though I didn't promise you anything."
  • Two-Part Trilogy: Inverted ala-Xenosaga. Though the second game wraps up the dangling plot threads from the first game, it still seems like it's the second act of a three-act story.
  • The Un Chosen One: The Avatar is the unacknowledged Sixth Ranger to the Knights quintet, because their knight is a modern creation.
  • Undying Loyalty: Ledom does everything for Emperor Madoras, even if it means dying in a last stand. He happily accepts a mercy kill as his reward.
  • Unexplained Recovery
    • Kara says that Father Ygddra revived because "she had a role to play", and that's all.
    • Emperor Madoras, after he loses is shown to be Not Quite Dead, and says Cisna's magic is too "feeble" to truly kill him.
  • Unusable Enemy Equipment: Despite Kara being in your party for the majority of both games, you never get the chance to control the Black Knight. You sure fight it a hell of a lot though.
  • The Un-Reveal: A roundabout example: It's never revealed to anyone but the audience that Sarvain killed Queen Floraine, not some Farian assassin, as was assumed.
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: At a point late in the game, Setti makes the other characters believe that Eldore, who they met early on, had been setting up their acquisition of the Knights as an attempt to unite them together and take the power for himself. This causes Eldore to teleport away. However, when they set up camp later that day, all the playable characters, including a returning Eldore, confront Setti, revealing that they knew what Setti was up to, as well as who he really is—Grazel.
  • Unusual Euphemism: "The don's got his fingers in every pie in town."
  • Villains Act, Heroes React: The heroes don't have any motivations beyond "Save Cisna" in game one, and then "Stop Yshrenia" in game two. The villains motivation is slightly more active, but still consists of "Take Over the World", of course.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: The most intricate character creation system ever... created.
  • You Monster!: Cisna proclaims that Dragias is one of these when she hears his plans and what he has done.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: Princess Cisna, who's kidnapped four times in the first game. Once she's truly rescued, however, she stays rescued in the sequel.
  • We Cannot Go On Without You: If Guest characters fall in battle, it's an automatic Game Over, even if you have revival items/magic to bring them back.
  • Weapon of Choice: The game has a surprisingly wide arsenal of equipable weapon types:
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • Kara's sister who wasn't actually her sister is largely forgotten about after the party moves on from Albana, as is the fact that she wasn't really her sister.
    • This also happens to Brimflamme, who's last seen tearing away from the Yshrenian fortress on Redhorn Isle before the Garmatha lifts off.
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: Everyone seems to have roughly North American accents; except for the Farians, who sound vaguely Spanish; Eldore, who's incredibly British; the Toads, who are shockingly Cockney; and the Papitaurs, who sound ... weird. There's also the original wielder of the Black Knight in Origins who is essentially a less arrogant Grazel with shorter hair.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Shapur's mental health took a turn for the worse after he stole the Black Knight. He develops Blood Knight tendencies and goes apeshit when the knight was taken from him in the final battle. His addiction to the Knight's power is what costs him his life in the end.
  • World Tree: Father Yggdra, the giant sentient tree in the midst of Faria.
  • You Are Too Late: Grazel had already acquired the Sun King when Leonard and the gang arrived on scene to stop him from doing so.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: While the Retrospecticon allows you to go to the past and take some things (like the Insignias) with you, it doesn't have the power to change events of the past. Miu and the party learn this the hard way.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: One of the first things Madoras does after his revival is kill Grazel. He makes it quick and painless because Grazel was a useful pawn. It's a bit of Laser-Guided Karma on his part, seeing as how he pulled the same move on Belcitane halfway through game one.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: The only way to acquire an Incorruptus that already has a pactmaker.

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