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MARDEK is a series of online Flash Role-Playing Games developed by Tobias Cornwall of Alora Fane (then-known as Pseudolonewolf of Fig Hunter Games). They revolve around a lad named Mardek, his childhood friend Deugan, their female colleague Emela, and the magical space ghost living inside Mardek's body called Rohoph. The games take place on the planet Belfan, where magic and all that nonsense are pretty commonplace. Part of what makes up MARDEK's charm is the game's sense of humour, as almost everyone on the planet seems totally aware that it's an RPG world, and are quick to point out that most of what happens make little to no sense whatsoever. Make no mistake, though; at the center of it all is a well-written story and well-constructed world that, as the quote above demonstrates, can be rather dark at times.

The series consists of three chapters, released between 2007 and 2010, with save carry-over for each game. Chapter 1 is here, Chapter 2 is here, and Chapter 3 is here. While MARDEK was initially planned to be eight chapters long, development did not continue past the third chapter, and the series in its original form is officially cancelled. However, Cornwall has released the existing chapters in a compiled form on Steam for preservation due to the discontinuation of Flash. A fan continuation can be downloaded here.

Since its cancellation, two Continuity Reboots have been started by Cornwall, which aim to adapt the characters and plotline into a new world with more depth. The first is Taming Dreams, an Episodic Game released in 2015 that was discontinued early on. The second is Divine Dreams, a 3D re-imagining that is in development as of 2020.

Has a character sheet. Please put character-specific examples there.

MARDEK provides examples of:

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  • Absurdly-Spacious Sewer: Lampshaded if you talk to Emela while you're in it in Chapter 2. She questions how it's so large when Goznor is only a few tiny houses in size, and how it even works if there was no plumbing. Deugan replies:
    Deugan: There was this thing we were taught when we were little called 'Suspension of Disbelief'. It's where you, well, just ignore things like that. Comes in very handy in this strange world of ours.
  • Action Commands: Prior to the release of Chapter 3 and its updates, three different keys could be pressed in battle to activate up to three seperate additional effects to an action, but only one effect could be applied per action. Currently, a single key is pressed to activate as many additional effects as equipable at the same time - leading to an unfortunate bug of being able to inflict negative status effects on allies with healing spells when you're only trying to increase its potency.
  • Actually Four Mooks: While the game is the Trope Namer in chapter 2, it’s actually a fairly uncommon practice in the game itself. Random encounters have no previous indicator of how many enemies you get, and most of the time when you fight bosses or plot-related combats, the sprites you see are what you’ll actually fight. The exceptions are heavily lampshaded.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Parodied with a few NPCs, and inverted with Emela, who is disgusted by Steele.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • Taken up to eleven with the in-game Encyclopaedia, which is extremely large and contains extensive information on pretty much every NPC of importance that you meet, as well as tons of other backstory information, such as the seven elemental crystals. You have to actually find the person/hear about the item in order for the full article to be added to the Encyclopaedia, though.
    • Lots of background information that is not automatically written into the in-game Encyclopaedia can be found in bookcases in-game (which obviously includes the libraries). Much of it was also present on Cornwall's website before it was remade, though some of it is included in supplementary material for the Steam re-release.
  • And I Must Scream:
    • The fate of the Governance de Magi. Due to the way Rohoph's sealing spell works, they don't get to go on to the afterlife, oh no. Their souls get turned into pretty jewelry that sits in Mardek's Hyperspace Arsenal for all eternity.
    • In Chapter 3, one of the items required to recruit Legion is a Wretched Soul, which you can get by freeing an evil spellcaster from a Soul Cage that the Old Hermit had trapped him in. The Old Hermit, formerly the Shaman of the volcano, had actually gone mad with guilt over trapping the evil spellcaster in this state.
    • The Lost Monastery. The priests there were driven to insanity by an object that is eerily similar to the Violet Crystal, but that's not the worst of it. After they'd died, they weren't allowed to continue on to the afterlife, and were instead bound to the monastery as zombies. Even after their flesh rotted to nothing, their souls were still bound there as insane, disfigured globs of ectoplasm.
  • Anti-Villain: Most of Chapter 3 is Qualna giving Rohoph an extended lecture that balance is important, and in the end reveals that he doesn't want to kill Rohoph, and instead wants to bring him back to the Governance de Magi so that everything can return to normal. King Gonoroth's death wasn't even part of his plan; he was hoping Rohoph would get the message before it came to a fight, but that turned out not to be the case. Made even worse by the fact that his Dreamstone reveals that his true goal was to bring Rohoph back so they might destroy the Violet Crystal together. The reason he couldn't tell him outright was because the rest of the Governance was monitoring him. Had Rohoph tried harder to understand his subtle hints, things might have gone differently, but then again...
  • Apocalypse How: A Class 2, or possibly Class 3, happened to the Manta, an ancient civilization, long before the game started.
  • Artifact of Doom:
    • The Violet Crystal. A variation is that it starts out in the villains' possession, meaning that they begin the story with heightened power.
    • Possibly the dark crystal, although it just contains power and doesn't try to corrupt/kill the holder, at least not directly.
  • Ascended Fanboy: The first two chapters follow Mardek and Deugan, who have dreamed about being heroes their whole lives, following in the footsteps of their childhood idols. But when Deugan becomes a hero, he feels as if he doesn't deserve it.
  • Author Avatar: Both Deugan and Emela, to a certain extent. Cornwall said that they're based off of his personality, but he made sure to give them unique personality traits to avoid making them blatant self-inserts.
  • Author Catch Phrase:
    • "Tsk."
    • Any time a cliché or otherwise expected situation is predicted (which happens very often), the sentence tends to end with "perhaps?" or a similar qualifier. This shows up less in Chapter 3, but is still present in Pseudo's blog posts.
  • Background Music Override: In the arena, the battle music plays uninterrupted until the end.
  • Balance Between Good and Evil: Or rather, between Light and Dark, and the elements in general. This is an overarching theme of Chapter 3, and Clavis/Qualna is a major advocate of it. Sure is much more reasonable than what Rohoph is ranting about by the end of that chapter.
  • Came Back Wrong: Annunaki that perform soul transfers can become Class 2s if they aren't careful, though it's the mind that's damaged, not the soul.
  • Can't Drop the Hero: In the first two chapters, Mardek, Deugan, and Emela can't be dropped. In the third chapter, Mardek can't be dropped; this is less of a problem than it could be because Mardek is a support hero and would get less experience than other characters if the same party was used throughout the game, though Mardek will still likely be higher-leveled than anyone else by the ending.
  • Chekhov's Gag: In the second chapter, you can read a book in Gloria's house mentioning Sirens (and how hot they are, with Emela and Mardek's reactions.) In the third game, you can recruit Elwyen, whose character class is Siren, and who constantly tries to hit on Mardek with her charms.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience:
    • The elemental crystals, the Governance de Magi, and many of the monsters.
    • Every character in the world has an element. When an NPC talks, their element is indicated in a logo in the chat box.
  • Cosmic Keystone: The elemental crystals, though they only affect their planet, not the whole universe.
  • Crossover: In Chapter 3, the author crosses over several of the elements from his canceled project Deliverance, as most of Cornwall's older works took place in the same universe.
  • Crystal Dragon Jesus: YALORT. Though he may be more like Crystal Dragon Zeus.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Pressing the Escape key pauses the game, as one might expect. However, similarly to Cave Story, pressing it again will quit the game! You have to press Z to actually unpause.
  • Dark Is Evil: Darkness is the elemental epitome of evil.
  • Dark Is Not Evil:
    • The game states that darkness is the element associated most with progress and drive. A book in Goznor even mentions that dark-elemental heroes have existed in the past.
    • Bernard is not evil, and is part of a group that competes with your own to save the world, although he actually admits he's only joined them because it amuses him. The aforementioned book cites a renowned dark-elemental hero named Bernard Stormkiller who is heavily implied to be the same Bernard that hangs out with the World's Saviors.
  • Death is Cheap: Happens in both gameplay and story. In battle, phoenix downs revive fallen characters. In the story, two mysterious characters appear at the front and back of Chapter 3. The first is dark-elemental and uses martial arts. The other is apparently a knock-off of Social Fox who wields a greatblade. If you played chapter 2, it's kind of obvious.
  • Disappeared Dad: Mardek's father is gone adventuring.
  • Dirty Business: The entire series is about Rohoph destroying his former friends. Chapter 3 shows that Moric's death has caused a lot of social unrest on their homeworld due to the Governance de Magi's loss of their zombie army and sees Rohoph blatantly lie to Qualna about letting his soul go free once defeated. Upon complaining about this, Mardek promptly gets cut off from the control of his own body to silence him. It's pretty evident by then that Rohoph wasn't quite as unaffected by the violet crystal as he himself believes. By the end of Chapter 3, Rohoph actively sabotages Mardek's friendship with Elwyen to prevent him from growing attached to anybody which could distract him from "their" goal.
  • Dwindling Party: A villainous version, strangely enough. There are only seven members of the Governance de Magi, and with every death, their homeworld suffers more and more, as does their group. It's explicitly stated that they're all friends (although they don't always agree with each other's methods), too, which makes their deaths even harder on the rest of them.
  • Earth Is the Center of the Universe: Completely averted, or possibly even inverted; Earth is in a completely different galaxy, and therefore doesn't even exist as far as everyone is concerned.
  • Easter Egg: If you cast Aqualung on someone before fighting Moric the first time in Chapter 2, defeat Moric, go to Lake Qur (without saving after the fight), and attempt to jump in, you will get a message from Tobias telling you how clever you are to have reserved Aqualung for that particular time, "but there is nothing down there... really".
  • Elemental Powers: There's even one Governance de Magi member for each element! (Well, except for Fig, since Fig-elemental people are exceptionally rare) This is pretty much justified by in-universe reasoning. It's just how their governmental system works.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Fire consumes Air, Air erodes Earth, Earth absorbs Water, and Water douses Fire. Light banishes Darkness, but at the same time, Darkness consumes and extinguishes Light. Fig and Ether form a similar duality, though purely for game balance as the Spiritual elements are neutral in the lore. There are also "pseudo-elements", namely Physical and Thauma (pure magic), and Divine, with the latter two being very rare.
  • Enemy Scan: You can do this at any time by clicking on an enemy's lifebar.
  • Equipment Spoiler: Two instances:
    • In Chapter 2, certain enemies drop staves and greataxes, which none of the characters can use. If you carry them over to the next chapter, you'll find out they're actually weapons for Sslen'ck and Gloria.
    • In Chapter 3, you can buy a weapon usable only by a character that's considered missing-in-action as of second chapter's ending. This was meant to foreshadow said character returning to the party in Chapter 4 had the series continued.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: Turned around from its usual form; Rohoph betrays the Governance de Magi, his former friends and allies, time and time again.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Social Fox and Mardek have this effect on some NPCs.
  • Evil Is Not Well-Lit: The Governance de Magi keep close to many classic villain tropes and clichés, and this is no exception. Their meeting room is somewhat dark except for the Violet Crystal in the center.
  • Evil Overlord: Baron von Doomkill, who can be read about in a library, was one of these.
  • Face Framed in Shadow: Averted for the Governance de Magi, despite them not averting Evil Is Not Well-Lit.
  • Fantastic Racism: A two-way example; both Reptoids and humans dislike each other and think that they're evil savages.
  • Flip Personality: Mardek shares his body with Rohoph's soul. You can tell instantly when Rohoph is talking because Mardek's eyes glow white and his voice pattern changes completely.
  • Flying Saucer: The Governance de Magi use these, or at least Rohoph and Moric do.
  • Foil: Introverted, serious, and analytical Rohoph to extroverted, silly, and dim-witted Mardek. Deugan could also be considered a foil to Mardek. Also, the mad, sociopathic Saul to the good-natured, pacifistic Meraeador.
  • Genius Loci: The planet is established to be alive, just not in the same way as living creatures. The shamans can commune with it, however.
  • Genre Savvy: Rohoph, who advises Mardek not to form emotional attachments to people, because then his enemies can use them against him in a Sadistic Choice, or they could simply betray him themselves. Granted, this is probably influenced by Rohoph's extreme paranoia caused by his own corruption from the violet crystal.
  • God of Evil: SHUMBRA, the elemental deity of darkness.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: Deconstructed, surprisingly. The elemental crystals are not just meaningless MacGuffins of vague power like in most RPGs that use them. The planet is established to be alive, and the crystals are, in a sense, its organs. They control extremely important parts of life and nature, so if they are tampered with, bad things happen to the planet. "Tampering" includes removing them from their temples, which the party has to do anyway to prevent actually evil people from getting their hands on them.
  • Gotta Kill Them All: The Governance de Magi. Also deconstructed, as it quickly becomes a Dwindling Party.
  • Grim Reaper: GALARIS. Moric was mistaken for him and, admittedly, he's pretty much a look-alike.
  • Hard Truth Aesop: In-universe example: Rohoph tells Mardek that he shouldn't get emotionally attached to people, because they could die at any moment, or use his trust to betray him.
  • He Knows About Timed Hits:
    • "Mardek, I'm going to remind you of the controls!" To be fair, much of the dialogue in the game is in the same vein.
    • In the beginning of Chapter 3, Mardek even lists this as one of the things he'll miss about Deugan.
      Mardek: But who will remind me of the menus and controls and I'll get all confused and not know what he's talking about? Who will tell me that Enter opens the menu and you have to use Rusty Keys on reactions in battle and stuff?
  • Hell: The Antilife, which is also an Ironic Hell.
  • Hidden Elf Village: Cambria, the trilobite town hidden from the outside world.
  • Human Aliens: Not just on Belfan; according to Fig Hunter's encyclopedia, they're one of the most common species in the galaxy.
  • Humanoid Aliens: While some of the species described in the encyclopedia are truly bizarre, the ones seen in the series itself are all humanoids.
  • Improbable Power Discrepancy: An amateur human necromancer can create undead more powerful and high-levelled than an super-powerful alien that has devoted most of his life to perfecting his magic. Said super-powerful alien necromancer is also weaker than some regular enemies in Bonus Dungeons. Gameplay and Story Segregation at its finest, considering how the Annihilator has destroyed entire civilizations.
  • Inexplicable Treasure Chests: Lampshaded in Chapter 3 if you get the "Collector" Medal:
    Jacques: A good Knight knows when to use 'is surroundings to aid 'im. Since we leeve in a world where apparently unopened chests full of loot scatter zee landscape, zee land truly can provide. And it 'as provided you well, it seems.
  • Informed Equipment: Averted with weapons, played straight with everything else.
  • It Amused Me: If you talk to Bernard in the Fire Temple, he outright says that he's only along to see the look on Bartholio's face when Mardek gets through first.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Lampshaded, of course.
  • Last Chance Hit Point: The "Survivor" Action Command.
  • Left Hanging: After the Continuity Reboot, many of the questions in the game are left unanswered: who is Mardek's father, will Mardek ever meet Emela and Duegan, what will happen to Elwyen, what about Sslen'ck and the blatantly evil councilor, what is the hinted-at planet destruction? An old notes document was included in the Steam re-release to answer some of these questions.
  • Leitmotif: One for every playable character, and quite a few others, as well.
  • Life Meter: Enemies have lifebars which can be clicked on to see enemy stats.
  • Light Is Not Good: While Light-elemental people are inclined towards goodness, this isn't always the case, since being too fixated on Light can create an imbalance of other elements. Most prominently is Rohoph, who becomes increasingly self-righteous as the chapters go on despite claiming to be unaffected by the Violet Crystal, and it's hinted that he was somewhat unhinged even before it was uncovered.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Due to the elemental weaknesses, healing and buff abilities and ability for magic to target multiple people, your spellcasters will become the most useful party members despite many starting out as a Squishy Wizard.
    • In Chapter 2, this is done with Deugan, Mardek and Emela. Deugan starts out stronger than Mardek who is The Medic and Emela who on top of not being able to take hits, has limited MP and originally can only cast a few spells. However, Emela starts more gaining spells and Mardek learns Quarry: Undead (in a game where zombies are the strongest monsters) and they start outclassing Deugan. The game still remains balanced mostly because it's so short.
    • In Chapter 3, Sslen'ck joins your party and his powerful hits help you get through the early parts of the game. However, spellcasters like Solaar, Gloria, Legion and Elwyen will eventually overstrip him. This is even true with Donovan and Sharla. Donovan is stronger and more offensive but Sharla gains healing and buff abilities that make her the more useful of the two. Mardek is a Magic Knight and gets the benefits of both.
    • Zach has an ability that subverts this. His Sinstrike does damage based on how many people he's killed. Use it enough and he can one shot bosses.
  • Lizard Folk: A whole race of 'em, living on Belfan and other planets.
  • MacGuffin Guardian: Chapter 3 has these in each of the elemental temples you visit. Fire has a wise, flaming dragonlike guardian named Girru who tests you by combat and finds you worthy, Water has a giant lobster-seahorse thing with a human rider, and Earth has the Rock Mole. Darkness was guarded by a wolflike alien mage called Solaar, but xe had already been taken out by a villain when you get there and in fact joins your party in hopes of catching the thief.
  • MacGuffin Melee: You fight Mystery Man, Muriance, and the World's Saviors over the Dark, Earth, and Fire crystals respectively.
  • Made of Evil:
    • All monsters are made up of a dark, insubstantial material known as "miasma".
    • The elemental in Chapter 3 include a Dark version. Due to the Sorting Algorithm of Evil, these are actually the least powerful elementals you encounter. The bestiary says that they don't attack so much as leak energy when disrupted, and that if they sit around too long they may crystallize and become Onyxes.
  • Mad Scientist: Mereador is pretty close to this at times. In fact, he pretty much goes mad with ideas for inventions if you speak to him within the volcano. It turns out that this is what the Goznor villagers actually saw him as, which is what got him shunned.
  • Magic Versus Science: Completely averted, or possibly inverted; in many advanced planets, magic and technology coexist without a second glance from anyone.
  • Magikarp Power:
    • Elwyen and Meraeador look useless at first, but if you take the time to get sheet music and build inventions, they become invaluable.
    • Solaar. Xe has abysmal Vitality, turning xim into a Glass Cannon with too much emphasis on the "glass" part to be very useful. However, if you give xim equipment that boosts Vitality (the Green Stole + 6, in particular), xyr HP is raised enough to make xim and xyr amazing skills usable.
  • Magitek: Used by advanced races such as the Annunaki and Lingons.
  • Mineral Macguffin: Deconstructed with the elemental crystals, which are critically important to the planet beyond just being shiny gems the party needs to collect.
  • Monster Compendium: The included Bestiary in the Encyclopedia section.
  • Mood Motif: "Sorrow", which plays during sad scenes in the game, and "Memory", which plays during the Time Skips at the beginning of chapters.
  • Mook–Face Turn: Gope, if you choose to spare him in Chapter Two.
  • More than Mind Control: The Governance de Magi. The Violet Crystal only intensifies their present insecurities and negative traits.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules: Even though Berserk (which causes a character or enemy to attack uncontrollably with double STR) is technically treated as a positive status effect, it is possible for some enemies to have a hidden resistance for it, but not player characters. This prevents the player from using Legion's Rage Chord, which inflicts Berserk, to trivialise certain boss fights by removing all abilities from the equation and turning them into a simple Damage-Sponge Boss.
  • Necessarily Evil: It's stated that despite dark generally being evil, having something to surmount encourages progress.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: There are knights, lizard people, mad scientists, zombies, aliens, robots, dragons, dragon-zombies, alien dragons, zombie-alien-dragon-robots, re-reanimated zombie-alien-dragon-robots who are barely anything more than bone... The list goes on and on.
  • No Endor Holocaust: Parodied. The zombie attack on Goznor and Canonia in Chapter 2 didn't have any casualty or any property damage. One NPC in Canonia in Chapter 3 explains that after Moric's battleship fall to the Lake Qur, the zombies just shuffled off and returned to their graves, and life returned to normal in few days.
  • Non-Elemental: The Potted Cactus and Elwyen's Dolorous Dirge and Requiem deal damage independent of any elemental resistances. Note that this doesn't apply to physical attacks, which do have their own element (called Physical) that can be resisted, despite it being referred to as "non-elemental".
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: The Aeropolis shaman, according to the encyclopedia.
  • The Omniscient Council of Vagueness: The Governance de Magi.
  • One-Gender Race: Of a sort. Aruans are genderless and use the gender-neutral pronoun "xe". Reptoids and Annunaki are hermaphroditic and don't have single sexes or gender, but are usually referred to as "he".
  • Only Sane Man: Rohoph thinks of himself as this compared to the rest of the Governance de Magi. Subverted in that, in fact, Rohoph is just as insane in his own way as the rest of the Governance. Played straight with Qualna, the most reasonable of the bunch.
  • Opening the Sandbox: Happens every chapter, usually just before the final dungeon. There are usually some sidequests you can complete before then, though.
  • Organ Drops: As of the Chapter 3 update, almost every enemy will drop a vendor trash/item crafting item. Most if not all of these seem to be harvested from the enemy (Fish scales, Goblin earwax, Zombie hand, etc.)
  • Painting the Medium: The Governance de Magi members all talk in glowing letters with a fancy font. Clavis even points it out when Rohoph takes over briefly while he's talking to Mardek.
  • Pamphlet Shelf: Most of them contain details about the setting and backstory, except for a few that turn out to just be somebody's Porn Stash.
  • Personality Powers: Justified. A person's element is "a part of their soul. The most fundamental part!"
  • Potential Applications: A positive example; this is Mereaedor's motivation for using an incredibly evil and powerful spell to rip souls out of the afterlife.
  • Powers via Possession:
    • How Mardek's "Magic Sword" powers work.
    • Moric's possession of Social Fox's body.
  • Protagonist Title: The game is titled MARDEK in all caps, to distinguish from the name of the main character Mardek.
  • Quirky Miniboss Squad: The World's Saviours, a tougher-than-average Goldfish Poop Gang in Chapters 2 and 3.
  • Random Encounters: Justified, amazingly. In one of the library sections in the game, the book that explains about miasma (see Made of Evil, above) explains that monsters really do literally form out of nowhere randomly, since miasma can condense anywhere as long as there are sufficient negative emotions to act as catalysts. This doesn't really explain the zombies or bandits that materialize out of nowhere, though.
  • Randomly Drops: Most enemies have an item or two to drop, mostly potions and status healing items, but some will drop weapons and armor on occasion.
  • Revive Kills Zombie: Healing spells, the Regen status and Phoenix Downs inflict damage when used on Undead enemies, and using Solaar's Resurrection skill halves life.
  • Science Fantasy: Okay, so it's got knights, dragons, magic, elemental crystals... spaceships, aliens, and other planets.
  • Serial Escalation: The first chapter had three small dungeons and a couple very short boss fights. The second had several mandatory dungeons, multiple bonus dungeons, and much longer and more difficult bosses. The third was much, much longer than either of them and had several sidequests, Item Crafting, and a large cast.
  • Shout-Out:
  • So Long, and Thanks for All the Gear: Hope you don't leave Deugan and Emela with plenty of gear by the end of Chapter 2 without banking them first!
  • Stealth Pun: Melchior, the air-elemental Governance de Magi member, is sort of an airhead.
  • Songs in the Key of Panic: "Flee!", which plays during Timed Missions.
  • Soul Power: All ether-elemental characters, though Annunaki all have this to a certain extent — they can perform "soul transfers" upon dying that will allow their soul to inhabit another body.
  • Straw Feminist: The Canonian adventuress, though she's a rather specific type (the arrogant kind that becomes exactly what they try to fight against).
  • Squishy Wizard: Emela. Sharla and Donovan, too, though their STR is just high enough for them to deal decent physical damage. Gloria also has low strength, but is significantly tougher than the other mages (though this could be due to her starting equipment, as the Emerald Bangle is a great HP booster).
  • Status Buff: Naturally. However, some of these are not as common as the Status Effects above. There are the typical Heal, Cure/Clear (one boss even has spells that named this, though they heal instead), Haste, Regen, stat boosters, and damage reducers (Shield, M Shield). Then there are the more unusual status buffs, such as Barkskin (basically a DEF raiser), Aero and Pyro Shell (which are Reflect, but only for one specific element), the Nulls (completely blocks one attack of its element), and Astral Form, which increases and decreases resistances to various elements. With all of the unusual status buffs, only one character has access to them. It should be noted that Berserk counts as a "Status Buff", even though enemies can inflict it themselves.
  • Status Effects: Poison, Silence, Sleep, Paralyze (Stun), Berserk, Confuse, and Instant Death are all present in their normal roles. There's also Bleed (basically the more potent poison), two varieties of Blindness (Blind lowers physical attack accuracy, while Numbness disables them altogether), a mix of Charm and Petrification in Zombify (your characters are basically in a Confuse state that cannot wear off without being cured, and causes a Game Over if all characters are zombified), and Curse (disables all spells, but not basic attacks).
  • Stuck Items: The weapon slot cannot be completely unequipped on any character; if you want to unequip a weapon, you must swap it with another.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: All over the place. Emela does it a lot in Chapter 2 ("This is totally new to me and not something I've done hundreds of times before!"), and Chapter 3 has such gems as Rohoph saying, "My eyes certainly aren't glowing white!"
  • Technical Pacifist: Meraeador, though he has no problem with killing monsters, as they are simply 'Miasma'. Lampshaded by Mardek, who asks Meraeador something like "Doesn't pacifist mean opposition to all violence?", whereupon Meraedor retorts that the meaning of pacifism is pretty pedantic. Also lampshaded in the Flamethrower's in-battle description.
    Engulfs all enemies in flame. MWAHAHA! Mereador's such a pacifist.
  • Theme Naming: Three members of the Governance de Magi are named Melchior, Gaspar, and Balthazar, after the (legendary, non-Biblical) names of the three magi that gave gifts to the Baby Jesus. The apparent leader is named Anu, the Mesopotamian god of the sky. It's also possible that these characters may be a Shout-Out to Chrono Trigger.
  • Time Skip: Between every chapter.
  • Title Theme Drop: Though this isn't used directly, quoting the main theme in plot-important pieces is very common.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Bernard is the only dark-elemental character in the World's Saviors. Actually subverted, as he seems to be a good guy, or at the very least, an Anti-Hero.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Rohoph was not immune to the Violet Crystal's effects.
  • Underground Monkey: There are usually significant changes and additions to character models instead of just Palette Swaps, however.
  • Unusable Enemy Equipment: Rather egregious, since you can click on an enemy's lifebar at any time to see a detailed description of their stats, equipment, etc., and only a few enemies will actually drop said equipment as a random drop.
  • Updated Re Release: In 2020, ten years after the initial Flash release of Chapter 3 (and updated versions of Chapters 1 and 2) and six years after the cancellation of Chapter 4 and beyond, the three released chapters were integrated into one game and released on Steam. Outside of minor changes (like the removal of sponsor branding and the increased availability of some limited items), the game was kept faithfully like when it was first released, for maximum nostalgia.
  • The Von Trope Family: Baron von Doomkill.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Sidestepped; it's explicitly stated multiple times that monsters aren't sapient, therefore killing them is okay. There's even a pacifist in your party who uses this as justification for why he fights! Enemies that are actual humans, however, deeply disturb the characters, who view it as a form of Shoot the Dog.
  • White-and-Grey Morality: A surprisingly cynical version; though the main characters are unambiguously good, the fact that the villains are of gray morality is stressed many times, and emphasizes the fact that fighting the villains is not necessarily a good thing. Slides toward Grey-and-Gray Morality in Chapter 3, as Rohoph's Knight Templar tendencies start to become more pronounced. By the end of the chapter, he's Jumping Off the Slippery Slope so much. Additionally, the story dwells a good bit on the fact that even actions taken fighting an indisputably evil villain (namely, Steele) can have wider negative repercussions.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?:
    • Sslen'ck can't stand zombies. Justified, as they killed his parents when he was young.
    • Bostolm, Legion's Sanguine soul, starts screaming incoherently whenever he's near a pixie. To quote his P-dialogue in the Lifewood:
      Legion: OH NOOOOOO!!!!! PIXIES LIVE HERE!!!!! AAAAAHHHHH!!!!!!! And fairies. I don't mind fairies. They're nice. But PIXIES?!? THEY DIG IN MY MIIIIIND!!! But they won't find any chocolate! Hee! HEE.
  • With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: The Governance de Magi, and how.
  • Wolfpack Boss: The Worlds' Saviours.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy:
  • Voice of the Legion: Annunaki, Aruan, and Crystal Guardian chat is written in a different font from the normal one, with Annunaki and Guardian chat written in the same color as their element, and Aruan chat (or Solaar's, anyhow) with a second, lighter copy of the original behind the original, to mimic the echoing voice stated in Solaar's Encyclopaedia entry. The spirit of the Annihilator has its own font as well, just to emphasize how powerful it is.
  • Ye Olde Butcherede Englishe: From a book in Meraeador's house:
    There was thise one tyme where he totally Slew this Mighty Dragonne! It was a Foule, Evile, Darke Beaste who had Capturede a Princesse - one of the Fineste in all the Landse - and only the Heroisme of Social Fox could Save her!
  • You ALL Look Familiar: Heavily, heavily lampshaded; for instance the inn patrons in Canonia comprise the same "Bloke" half a dozen times, and another house contains a dozen of the same "Chap". And that's not the only time you see either of them...
  • You No Take Candle:
    • Solaar is somewhere between this and Strange-Syntax Speaker. This is lampshaded if you talk to xem in Goznor.
      Solaar: Oh wowsers! A village-town of human beings! They all seem to be livifying life to a non-minimal extent, if you would care to capture my drifting!
      Mardek: ...Huh?
      Solaar: Even I don't know what I meaned by that one.
    • All Aruan and even their masters, who sent Solaar to watch over the Dark Crystal, speak this way too.
  • Your Mind Makes It Real: The afterlife works this way, according to the Aeropolis library. Naturally, this also means that Ironic Hell is in effect.

    Chapter One: A Fallen Star 
  • Background Music Override: In the first area, the "Mighty Heroes" track plays over everything else up until the boss fight.
  • The Bully: Mugbert's bestiary and encyclopedia article lists him as such. And, while examples of his bullying are unseen, beating him up at the end of this chapter is strangely satisfying...
  • Fat Bastard: The final boss of this chapter is A fat, ugly kid named Mugbert, who likes to bully Mardek and Deugan.
  • If I Wanted You Dead...: Rohoph uses a form of this to reassure Mardek and Deugan when he performs a soul transfer into Mardek, saying that he could simply expel Mardek's soul from his body if he wanted to, but decided not to as a gesture of goodwill.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall: Melchior hums along to the background music in the ending cutscene.
  • A Taste of Power: In the beginning of the chapter, you play as level 50 "heroes" with extremely powerful skills and equipment. It's just the main characters playing pretend, however.
  • Title Drop: In multiple ways; both the Magic Meteor, and the fact that Rohoph is, in a sense, a Fallen Angel.
  • 20 Bear Asses: You have to collect five lead pipes in a sidequest, which you get from fighting strange rats which seem to have these as their tails.
  • Warm-Up Boss: Both boss fights in this chapter are very simple, do not require any special strategies and will have a difficult time defeating you.

    Chapter Two: A New Hero 
  • Angrish: The encyclopedia lapses into this in the description of the zombie locksmith miniboss.
  • Anti-Hero: A hilarious example of parody within the game would be Steele. Until he seemingly dies, that is.
  • Author Filibuster: The What Measure Is a Mook? discussion is one of these.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Hooray! Mardek saved his world and became a hero! But, in the process of doing so, he lost his closest friend, his love interest left for vague reasons, the other two allies he may have made ditched him for weak reasons, and he was forced to fight the reanimated corpse of his childhood hero.
  • Bonus Dungeon: Returning to the Catacombs past where you defeated Moric leads to Social Fox's Tomb, which houses the most powerful regular enemies in the chapter, including a Super Boss. The Trilobite Cave leads to an entire bonus village, with a tournament and a bit of minor story information.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: The Wolfblade is Social Fox's sword, and the strongest greatsword in the game. In the web version of Chapter 2, it's completely unobtainable, and exists in the code so it can be wielded by the Final Boss; in the Steam version, it was added as a guaranteed drop from that enemy, but it's not very long before Deugan, the only character who can use Greatswords, leaves the party, so carrying it into Chapter 3 won't affect anything.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: In the ending cutscene, which contains a meeting of the Governance de Magi, Balthazar lampshades an As You Know scene by saying that they have to inform "them" of their plans, but that they also must be cryptic and mysterious.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Early on, Emela asks Vehrn, a headstrong paladin, just how he expects YALORT to assist him in battle. She jokingly asks if he expects YALORT to send down "green lightning". The paladin is offended, considering the statement blasphemy, and says that he'll simply send him support. After driving out the zombies from Goznor, the priest rewards you with an amulet that teaches Vehrn the ability to do just that. It's even titled "Green Lightning".
    • When you first enter the zombie-infested Goznor, the priest will give you the key into the catacombs under the town. Deugan, in his role as designated lampshade-hanger, asks how the zombies got out to terrorize the town if the door is still locked, and is promptly told to shut up. Halfway through the catacombs, you fight a zombie locksmith.
  • Climax Boss: Moric. His second form, anyway.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Moric is fought three-fourths of the way through the chapter and gets killed by the heroes without much trouble. It's only after Mardek retires for the night that Rohoph brings up that Moric likely transferred himself into a corpse with his Annunaki powers; sure enough, he comes back with a new body and a battleship to set up the final section of the game.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero: The World's Saviours. They claim to be a party of heroic adventurers, but they're just searching for the crystals instead of doing anything to help with the current crisis.
  • Flunky Boss: Moric is the weakest member of the Governance de Magi, but compensates by summoning undead minions for backup.
  • Foreshadowing:
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: If you hurry, you can get to the escape pods from Moric's control room in about 2 minutes, leaving 8 to fight the dracelon again, which is plenty. Deugan still sacrifices himself to distract it, insisting that there isn't time to fight it again.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: Steele joins up with Mardek, Deugan, and Emela to fight Muriance, where he's controllable and has a few exclusive skills. He gets "killed" by Emela after the fight, and by the time he appears again he's a full-on villain.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Deugan's "I'll hold him off, you get to safety" scene.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Not one you face, mind you. Bartholio assumes that your party is one of these to his, thinking that, should you fight them again, they will surely win. And, if you're successful in the hidden arena, you prove him wrong on that as well.
  • Load-Bearing Boss: Moric. Justified in that he didn't technically power or support the battleship, he just commanded it to shut down as he died.
  • Mercy Rewarded: Choosing to spare the bandit Gope in the Gem Mine will cause him to show up later in the Goznor inn and give you the fourth Trilobite Key (which is needed to access the town of Cambria and the arena tournament in Chapter 2), and reappear in Chapter 3 as a travelling merchant, the only unlimited source of Liquid Lightnings, Really Cold Waters and Bottles O' Acid (which are invaluable in the solo Survival Tournaments). In contrast, killing him will simply give you a fight with a standard Bandit, while rendering Cambria inaccessible until Chapter 3.
  • One-Time Dungeon: The chapter's final dungeon gets destroyed after the final boss is defeated, preventing it from being accessed in Chapter 3. Downplayed with the Goznor Sewer and Catacombs; they can be freely explored during Chapter 2, but aren't available in Chapter 3.
  • One-Winged Angel: Inverted with Moric, who you fight in his Annunaki form first, then later in his second form, the possessed corpse of Social Fox.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • The Trilobite Key IV, and everything in Cambria by extension, gets lost for the rest of the Chapter if you kill Gope early on. Luckily, in Chapter 3, there's an obscure shop in Acropolis that sells all the Trilobite keys if you missed any of them.
    • The Zombie Locksmith mini-boss can drop a Keyblade, a unique sword that's strong for that point of the game (though it doesn't have any skills attached). The Locksmith only drops the Keyblade at a 50% chance, and there are only two chances to get it. The Steam release increases the drop rate to 100% so that it can't be missed.
    • The Goznor Sewers, Catacombs and Moric's battleship are only accessible in this chapter, so the encyclopaedia entries for relevant enemies as well as the Keyblade, Ancient Sword, Burial Sword and Bonestone cannot be obtained if you start the game from Chapter 3 (though only the Bonestone is of any practical use).
  • Point of No Return: Once you enter Moric's Battleship, you cannot leave until the Final Boss is defeated, preventing you from completing any unfinished side quests.
  • Pre-Final Boss: The Dracelon is a boss fight that immediately precedes, separated only by a single door, the Final Boss of the chapter.
  • Say My Name: During the confrontation in the Catacombs: "Moric!" "Rohoph!" "Moric..." "Rohoph..."
  • Super Boss: Social Fox's Tomb, an optional level of the Catacombs located past where you fought Moric, is home to the Zombie Dragon, the most powerful enemy in the game.
  • Suspicious Video-Game Generosity: Chapter 2 encourages you to put Vehrn into your party halfway through (though he can be swapped out with Zach), and he comes with strong Light-element attack and the ability to learn an anti-undead attack. The main villain of the chapter is the Governance's necromancer, meaning most of the enemies and bosses past that point are Dark-elemental and/or undead.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: Lampshaded by Vehrn when he wonders why when the heroes argue over what to do about a certain monster, it just sits idly waiting for them to finish their conversation.
  • What Measure Is a Mook?: Discussed after the first mission, in one of the game's darker scenes. Also subverted in the case of Gope.
  • Videogame Cruelty Punishment: If you don't kill a bandit named Gope at the beginning, he'll later give you the Trilobite Key IV, which is essential for completing a sidequest. But if you killed him, too bad, it's lost until Chapter 3.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: Happens twice, though it's mostly Played for Laughs. Nobody even got hurt.

    Chapter Three: Keystones 
  • Artifact of Doom: That purple plot item you handed to the Yalortian monk in Aeropolis? It quite fits the description of The Violet Crystal, which kicked off the plot by making Rohoph's companions evil. Speaking to Rohoph within the Lost Monastery confirms that it is exactly that. He recognizes the corrupting energy as being the same as the one that the Violet Crystal gave off.
  • Attention Whore: Elwyen, but only with Mardek.
    Elwyen: Maaardeeeek! I'm all covered in sweat, all wet and glistening and it's making me squirm around! Why aren't you watching?
    Mardek: Well, we're sort of on an adventure here...
    Elwyen: I still wish you'd ogle me lustfully all the time, just like you used to!
    Mardek: I don't remember ever doing that...
    Elwyen: IN MY DREAMS YOU DID!!!
  • Back from the Dead: Moric's Dracelon comes back to un-life for the third time, this time as a Dark-element Bone Dracelon in Saul's Dungeon.
  • Background Music Override: The Astral Tunnel's theme plays even in battles until you fight Qualna.
  • Badass Boast: The Annihilator scoffs at you when you try to fight it, saying that it has wiped out an entire civilization, and that you have no hope of defeating it in single combat. Mardek does so anyway. Granted, it is by far the hardest battle in the entire series (including the security demon, which is hard for completely different reasons).
  • Bittersweet Ending: Where to begin? Well, first you have to fight your own king. Who afterwards promptly dies. Oops. And did we mention that he's actually the father of one of your party members? Then it turns out Qualna wasn't even trying to get you to kill the king, and this is exactly the example he was trying to create to show Rohoph that he's gone off the deep end, and to get him to rejoin the Governance de Magi peacefully. (Although most of the Magi have gone off that end too.) Rohoph promptly kills Qualna too and seals his soul so he can no longer escape after telling her that he wouldn't. Mardek and Elwyen go to a play afterwards to lighten the mood, until Rohoph forces her away, to Mardek's disdain and anger. So now King Gonoroth and probably the most friendly of the Governance de Magi are dead, and Rohoph wants Mardek to have no more friends to become attached to. Yeah. At least Lone Wolf (Deugan) finally talks to Mardek's face, although he doesn't reveal who he is.
  • Body to Jewel: The energy-based elementals that inhabit the elemental temples turn into the other, crystalline inhabitants of the temples, if they stay still too long.
  • Bonus Dungeon: Two optional dungeons can only be visited late in the chapter (since they require items collected from late game mandatory dungeons to enter) and house the most powerful enemies in the game, including a superboss each:
    • The Miasmal Citadel is connected to the Dark Temple via an isolated section of the Sandflow Caves, which requires the Eldritch Key (sold in the Aeropolis slums) to access. The four Miasmal Chalices, collected from the four Temples visited during the chapter (two of which are meant to be the final two mandatory dungeons visited during the chapter), must then be put on the four empty pedestals in the vestibule (which does not have monsters or anything of interest besides a portal leading back to the Sun Temple) before the portal to the main part of the dungeon opens.
    • The Dreamshrine is accessible from the Tree of Dreams in the Soulgrove (the uppermost part of the Dreamwood), and requires the player to collect the first 16 Dreamstones, some of which are located in out-of-the-way locations, especially the 16th, which is dropped by the first superboss from the previous Bonus Dungeon.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • Pixies. They're fast, start with every stat buff cast on them, are resistant to all natural elements and almost impossible to hit physically, can inflict most negative status effects on you, open the fight by trying to inflict confusion or sleep on your entire party, and then slowly pick away at you while you can't fight back.
    • Mythril Golems. Made easier if Legion has Spirit Nova, which removes more than half of their HP, and so lowers them to just tough enemies, though they're still guaranteed to KO at least one person.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Annihilator:Animus drops two accessories when defeated, and while both are pretty good, there's nearly nothing to use them on except for solo arena challenges and some much easier bonus bosses, since Animus is the strongest superboss in Chapter 3 (and the series as a whole with the cancellation of Chapters 4 and beyond). The Sorceror's Soul is also the only item that teaches the skill Loquacity, which grants immunity to Silence, a status effect that isn't common to begin with and is probably no threat to a team that defeated Animus.
  • Chest Monster: In Chapter 3, some chests are guarded by enemies that will start a fight when opened and must be defeated to obtain the item inside. Most of them contain local enemies, and there's no indication whether a chest is guarded or not, with the exception of two (one in the Earth Temple, the other in the Desert Cave), which are clearly painted red-and-gold and home to bosses, whose in-game descriptions lampshade this:
    Red Dragon: Despite its enormous size, this proud, vicious variety of fire-elemental dragon can actually fit inside a small treasure chest. Which is an interesting fact.
    Bone Demon: A terrible skeletal demon, sealed in a treasure chest by wizards long ago to keep its evil from the world. It was thought at the time to be immortal, but its bones had become brittle over the centuries, leaving it vulnerable to destruction.
  • Companion Cube: Parodied when you bring the Warding Stone to its intended destination but refuse to deposit it.
    Warding Stone Pedestal: You shouldn't have grown so attached to little 'Wardy McStone', you know. You KNEW from the moment that he came into your tender care that you'd have to one day say goodbye, so please, overcome your emotional difficulties now, say a good, long, teary farewell to the stone you wish was your lover and your son, and come back when you're good and ready.
  • Cosmetic Award: Guard Captain Jacques gives them out.
  • Defeat Equals Friendship:
    • Averted; while one might expect that the Water Guardian would join the party again after her defeat, she stays behind because the guardians have to guard their temples even if the crystal is gone.
    • Played straight with Sslen'ck, whom you face in a boss fight before you can recruit him.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: The most powerful Super Boss is a super-powerful alien monstrosity that wiped out an entire civilization. And not only can you defeat its body, but its soul as well. Just to put this in perspective, a book you can read within the Lizard Tribe village states that said alien monstrosity had its body and soul seperated by an ancient race to stop its path of destruction. Sadly, both the body and soul merely went on destruction sprees of their own, giving the race two deadly enemies to face. They managed to seal both parts of the monster away, but didn't quite make it through afterwards.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: Subverted, as the mastermind is a major villain, but disguised as a "dog". Clavis, that enigmatic but inconspicuous guy who just seemed to like talking about balance, is Qualna in disguise. It's lampshaded enough to even throw some players off.
  • Doomy Dooms of Doom: Mentioned within a novel in Xantusia is one Baron von Doomkill, a "crystal tyrant" who had, in the past, seized control of an elemental crystal and attempted to conquer the world. He's one of the four souls summoned into Legion.
  • Double Entendre:
    Melchior: I liked Qualna. He had one eye. I liked that about him because I have one eye too. So does everyone in this chamber. We're like one big happy family! He also solved his problems with words. Words which weren't things like "DIE!!" or "I have a small peanut and I'm not afraid to use it!"
    Balthazar: You have a small what?
    Melchior: I'm a hermaphrodite.
  • Dream Land: You get to travel within one. Unfortunately, it's populated by Pixies and other Ether- and Fig-elemental enemies.
  • Duel Boss: Qualna is fought with only Mardek in the party.
  • Driven to Suicide: Heavily implied with Bostolm, who was driven so insane by pixies digging in his mind that he "drilled them out of [his] head".
  • Dysfunction Junction: Mardek's party. Almost everyone you can recruit has some sort of secret in their past that troubles them.
  • Early-Bird Boss: By stats alone, the Security Demon isn't very strong compared to the Annihilator. The reason why he is so difficult is that he becomes inaccessible after your fourth Warport trip.
  • Elemental Embodiment: All four of the Elemental Temples you explore have both energy-based elementals and gemstone monsters of the appropriate element.
  • Everyone Is Related: P-key dialogue reveals that Steele was Gloria's (half) brother, and the end of the third chapter shows that Donovan is the King of Goznor's son.
  • Evil Chancellor: There's one in the Lizard Village whose actual name is Blatantly Evil Chancellor. Sslen'ck has an unfortunate blind spot concerning him. He even fails to notice a poisoning attempt as he leaves. The encyclopedia entry gives him a glowing review, but it was all Blatant Lies.
  • Final Speech: King Gonoroth has one.
  • Flunky Boss: Sslen'ck, Qualna, and King Cuthbert.
  • Foreshadowing: One shop you will find has a rather powerful weapon available that only one person can use. It was meant to foreshadow that an old party member could return in a later chapter, but it never came to fruition.
  • For the Evulz: Bernard makes a zombie which disrupts the play at the end of the story. When people call him out for this, he responds that no one was hurt and he enjoyed doing it. He also knows that the members Bartholio's party aren't the true heroes of the game. He just follows them around for kicks. Or, in other words, to watch them fail time and time again.
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble:
    • All in one character, the multi-souled Legion. The colours of the souls even correspond to their temperaments' colours.
    • The four Solakian monks that you need to rescue in a sidequest.
    • There's even a monster like this, "Temperance", which is basically a totem pole with the heads of the four temperaments.
  • Friend-or-Idol Decision: Discussed in one of Rohoph's P-dialogs; he's of the opinion that the idol is more important than the friend. This is rather important foreshadowing.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: Mereador, once he joins your party.
  • Glamour Failure: When Gloria shows Mardek how to access the Dreamrealm, she and Elwyen accidentally find out about Rohoph: because he can get in and Mardek can't, he shows up in his original form. The other character who can get in, Solaar, absolutely did not already know about the Annunaki's presence.
  • Guide Dang It!: Many. To name a few:
    • Finding the trilobite warrior in the Dark Temple. A lot of bonus things, in fact.
    • If you don't get the first Miasmal Chalice before fighting the boss, you've got a long trek ahead of you since you'll be teleported back to town via cutscene.
    • The trade quest to get Sslen'ck's best axe nearly requires a walkthrough unless you pay close attention to minor dialogue.
    • Opening the Lost Monastery, which requires you to have two characters in your party, one of whom it isn't immediately obvious is connected to the place, and who requires you to recruit several other party members with their own semi-obscure requirements.
    • The Water Temple, but not because its puzzle is all that difficult (it just requires a lot of walking) — the official guide is wrong. There are a few steps that are completely left out of the guide.
  • Hidden in Plain Sight: Qualna, twice. First was the really obvious king, complete with Mind-Control Eyes. Then there was Clavis. He seems to know as much as Rohoph, yet seems to be a human mage. He can get anywhere he wants to, even the bottom of a lake. Often he seems to be directly in your path. He is Aether, and is against fighting and "removing Keystones" whenever possible. He is a powerful "Equilibriumancer" (Aether magic specialist), and he has the same robes and eye color as Qualna's. Yet, Rohoph never realizes it was him until too late.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: There's a black Yalortian priest who speaks with a Jamaican accent. His alignment is, in the Encyclopedia, Lawful Evil. His name? Vudu.
  • In the End, You Are on Your Own: Rohoph drives off Mardek's friends because he thinks they'll betray Mardek like his former friends did.
  • Item Crafting: Alchemy and smithing are available in certain areas.
  • King Mook: Antares and King Cuthbert, two early game bosses, are simply more powerful versions of the standard Vega and Happy Johnny enemies that you should have been fighting throughout the Sun Temple and Sandflow Caves.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    • At one point, a character asks if the rest of the party can hear something. Mardek mentions that, yes, the music changed... unless you have the sound off, in which case Mardek comments that he can't hear anything because the sound is off.
    • At one point, when complimented by his boss on a job well done, Mardek smilingly replies "I can only move at the will of my unseen master!"
    • One of Bostolm's lines:
      Bostolm: EEEEHeeheeheee! I am difficult to WRITE DIALOGUE FOR!!!
  • Marathon Boss: Both of the Annihilator's forms can spam a spell that nullifies all damage once, and when it comes to Animus, Gemsplosion: Candriathope is the only attack in the entire game that it isn't resistant to. Karnos also has a whopping 65,000 hit points.
  • May–December Romance: If Elwyen is seriously right about Gloria and Mereador getting together. Consider that the Meraeador was an adult while Mardek was a kid, and Mardek grew up for a few years in between Chapters 1 and 2 when he met Gloria, who was a child then. Sure, Gloria's a shaman, so age means nothing to her, but still. Mereador actually comments on this on one of his backstory party talks. Unfortunately, Mardek also says that it's okay for a 10-year-old kid to love an old woman, as he's a little off when it comes to reality.
  • Mind-Control Eyes: Everyone notices that the king's eyes are pink. No one comments on Mardek because he's wearing a helmet.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • The final scenes are very serious and border on Wham Episode. Then, we get to see an ending cutscene with the Governance de Magi, where Gaspar and Melchior manage to make you laugh hysterically again.
    • Right in the middle of the end-game drama, after Rohoph runs off to settle things alone, we get this exchange:
      Vehrn: Let's just wait for a while and they'll sort themselves out. Who's up for a game of Twister!?
      Elwyen: Ooh! Me! Me!
      Donovan: My father is lying dead on the floor here.
      Vehrn: Well I guess he'll have to sit this one out, then.
  • Most Definitely Not a Villain:
    • The Qualna-possessed King makes several remarks to this effect. This is actually invoked, however; Qualna purposefully put up a terrible act in a Reverse Psychology gambit.
  • Narrative Profanity Filter: The Mysterious Man has his copious swearing replaced by [PROFANITY] in the textual equivalent of a Sound-Effect Bleep. Though, hilariously enough, one bit of dialogue suggests that this may not be the case— he's actually saying the word "PROFANITY" in the middle of his sentences (that, or Mardek is reading the dialogue boxes).
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Two examples.
    • The first one, which makes up the two optional boss battles, involves a starfish alien Eldritch Abomination that lands on Belfan and starts annihilating (thus its name) and begins wiping out the first civilization before humans came to power. In a desperate attempt to save themselves, they use their magic to seperate its spirit from its body, hoping it would just stop moving or something to that effect; all that did was made the monster even more destructive and prone to rampaging than before. Not only that, but you find out by reading the encyclopedia by defeating its soul next that had its trapped soul been left alone long enough, it could have eventually formed a new body anyways, repeating the process.
    • The other example is after defeating the final boss of the chapter turns out that Qualna was actually the least affected by the Violet Crystal, merely acting like it affected him like the others in order to not be run off just like Rohoph. Not only is he aware that the Violet Crystal has, slightly, affected him somewhat and he wants to destroy it just like Rohoph wanted to, helping him no less, but he's aware that the Violet Crystal has greatly affected Rohoph just as much as the other Governance de Magi. While he wanted to help Moric in the last chapter, Rohoph is in his Knight Templar mode and simply wants to kill off Qualna because he's supposedly evil too. And, even after giving his word that he would let Qualna go to the afterlife afer his death, Rohoph still seals his soul in a crystal. You find out from the dreamstone he drops that he was genuine in his desire to help Rohoph and destroy the Violet Crystal, which means Rohoph just sealed a harmless, innocent person and the only member of his race that wanted to help him.
  • Not Quite Dead:
    • Steele comes back as a major antagonist.
    • This is weirdly subverted with Deugan, who decides not to return to the group for various reasons shown throughout his dreamstones. In his final one, he says that he is dead, but is reborn anew... as "Lone Wolf", the next Grand Adventurer. However, this means that he's all abandoned Emela.
    • Parodied: after the boss fight against Sslen'ck, speaking to his fallen lizard guards reveals that they're still very much alive and somewhat irked to left lying there.
  • Obviously Evil: A few villains in this chapter act this way, but Saul is the best example, as his appearance, mannerisms, and profession make it as subtle as a brick to the head, boosting him up to cartoonish levels of villainy. Sslen'ck's chancellor also hilariously parodies obviously evil characters who are trusted nonetheless.
    Sslen'ck: As my most trusted advisssor, Blatantly Evil Chancellor, I leave the care of our village in your capable handsss.
  • Oculothorax: The numerous eyeball enemies, including the elemental-based Palette Swaps.
  • Optional Boss:
    • There are two optional boss-level versions of the Molestor enemy. One is the the Bone Demon, hidden in a trapped chest in a cave in the Desert Path, guarding Zach's ultimate weapon. The other is the Security Demon, which is a Beef Gate monster intended to kill players who answer Warport questions incorrectly; if defeated, it provides experience and allows the standard Warport Ticket to be kept permanently, and it isn't listed in the bestiary.
    • The Red Dragon shows up twice. One of them is in a trapped chest in the Earth Temple, the game's final main dungeon, and guards the Red Dragon Scales, which can be traded for Sslen'ck's best weapon. The other is the final enemy in Cambria's main arena tournament, which only opens up after defeating the six Trilobite Warriors spread throughout the game.
  • Overly Long Gag: The Warport security. Even the employees refer to it as such.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise:
    • The Water Temple guardian, whose identity should be obvious to anyone who played Chapter 2, wears only a see-through veil to cover her face. Mardek doesn't recognize her.
    • Also, the Mysterious Man, Steele. Mardek comments that he never knew anyone with an eyepatch, despite his facial features and personality completely giving his identity away. If you have Donovan in your party, he'll ask "why did he have to come back?"
    • Inverted at the end of the game. When Lone Wolf starts talking with Mardek, Mardek appears to recognize who he actually is despite the fact that he's much more disguised than the other two. Presumably, the fact that they grew up together would make it easier for Mardek to see through Deugan's new identity.
  • Percent Damage Attack:
    • Spirit Nova halves the maximum HP of the target (provided their level isn't too high). Legion can learn it, which is incredibly useful against Mythril Golems.
    • The guardians of the Water, Earth, and Fire temples each have a spell called Inversion: Water, Earth, and Fire, respectively. They cause the target to take percent max health damage based on their resistance to the named element (EX: The Water Guardian using Inversion: Water on someone with 80% water resistance will cause them to take 80% of their max health as damage).
    • Bisection, used by Annihilator:Karnos, deals Aether damage equal to half of the target's health. While it is in Aether form, it has access to a move called Plasma Breath that deals Aether damage equal to 90% of all player characters' max health.
    • Annihilator:Animus has the moves Soulstorm Alpha, Gamma, and Omega, which deal Aether damage equal to 50%, 90%, and 120% of all player characters' max health respectively.
  • Post-Final Boss: After the Final Boss battle, the chapter (and series as a whole, due to the cancellation of Chapters 4 and beyond) end with a fight against a very weak boss, the Zombie Actor.
  • Power Copying: Legion is a "blue mage"-type character, learning battle skills by getting hit with them.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy:
    • Sslen'ck and almost all Lizard Folk in the game qualify.
    • Zach, pre-mercenary career, was once one of these. Mardek uses the exact term to describe him.
  • Quote Mine: Elwyen is happy when she can quote Mardek telling her she's hot. Note that Mardek was telling her this in a volcano.
  • Redemption Demotion:
    • Averted with Sslen'ck, who is just as powerful when you fight him as when he joins you. Of course, since he's a Flunky Boss, he's actually of a reasonable power level for that point of the game.
    • The World's Saviors play this straight. In their mandatory boss battle, they're extremely hard to beat. Late in the game you can control both Bartholio and Aalia for a while and both have been massively nerfed— Bartholio is noticeably weaker and Aalia doesn't have her strongest healing and protection spells.
  • Relationship Values: As you level up characters, new dialogue unlocks about themselves, current conditions, etc. that you can access by pressing a button while wandering around.
  • Required Party Member: Solaar immediately forces himself into the party when you meet him. In the second version of this trope, certain party members are required for interaction with some important events, such as requiring Legion for entering the Lost Monastery and Elwyen for recruiting Gloria.
  • Robot Buddy: Legion.
  • Rush Boss: The Bone Demon has comparatively low HP for a boss, but has very powerful attacks.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Both halves of the most powerful Super Boss. And another bonus boss, the Bone Demon.
  • Secret Test of Character: Qualna, while posting as the King, attempts to do this to Mardek & Co. by making them obtain the Elemental Crystals. Despite how poorly he portrays the King and that his disguise, Clavis, explains about the balance of the world and lectures them when they obtain the Water Crystal, it fails.
  • Shop Fodder: While the Expensive Suit (a rare drop from Posh Zombies) can be equipped like any other clothing item, it does not provide any skills or stat bonuses, and is only good for selling (which it does for 10000 gold).
  • Snake Talk: Reptoids ssspeak like thisss.
  • So Last Season: An NPC in Aeropolis says this phrase exactly in response to an amateur necromancer who's trying to raise an undead army.
  • Stealth Pun: There's a famous playwright known as "Wobblescimitare". Sound familiar?
  • Stepford Smiler: Most of the workers in the Warport. Considering they're demons, this is not really surprising.
  • Super Boss: The most powerful enemies in the chapter are the Annihilator's two forms, fought in two extra dungeons. The Karnos form is found in the Miasmal Citadel, which gets unlocked in the endgame through a complex process, and drops Solaar's best weapon and an accessory that grants auto-Berserk and auto-Haste, as well as the sixteenth Dreamstone. The Animus form, by far the strongest enemy in the game, appears in the Dreamshrine that opens once you have sixteen Dreamstones (which is all of them except for the one dropped by Qualna), and its rewards are the best defensive accessory in the game and an accessory that teaches Loquacity.
  • Take That!: Talking to an NPC in Goznor dressed as a zombie, Rohoph makes a jab at Sonny, a rival Flash RPG, by sarcastically remarking that the plot of someone waking up a zombie is thrilling. Note that in the same line of conversation, Mardek (who is normally regarded as fairly dim) likes the plot idea.
  • Tempting Fate:
    • While the consequences never occurred due to the series being cut short, it nonetheless seems extremely likely that giving an extremely powerful crystal (which drove a monastery insane, and is specifically noted to seem disconcertingly similar to the Violet Crystal that kicked off the plot) to the Dark-aligned High Priest of YALORT will have negative consequences. Vehrn's take on it?
      "Then we'll see that I was right and nothing bad will happen."
    • Throughout the chapter, your gang collects some of the elemental crystals and Gloria comments how removing them from the temples will have a disastrous effects on the planet. Cue everyone talking about how they'll be careful and return them right away...
  • The Sacred Darkness: Dark Is Evil most of the time, but it's still necessary.
  • Third-Person Person: Saul takes this further than most.
    Saul: That would be I, answered Saul affirmatively. What of this?, he went on further to ask, the ivory protuberances of his gaunt visage lit eerily by the dim torchlight; the furry dark caterpillars of his brow dancing in antipode to suggest particular suspicion; wanting for an answer that does not test his patience and his undead...
  • Title Drop: Multiple times, whenever you talk to Clavis.
  • Volcano Lair: At least one NPC lives in a volcano, a mad hermit inside a little cave who is actually the shaman of the area, driven insane from guilt.
  • Wife Husbandry: Inverted; Elwyen tries to do this with Mardek.
  • A Wizard Did It:
    • Referred to by name in the in-game encyclopedia entry as the explanation for how the sand behaves in the Sandflow Caves.
    • Gloria says the same thing if you talk to her when inside the Tainted Grotto. Deena, one of the souls within Legion, used to be married to the wizard responsible. She refers to him as The Wizard Who Did It, capitalized just like that, if you speak to Legion while inside the Grotto.