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Video Game / Radiata Stories

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Radiata Stories is a role-playing game developed by tri-Ace and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 2. The game is notable for its large number of distinct NPCs, each of whom have their own lives, lifestyles, jobs, personalities, homes, dialogues, and schedules. It's also notable for its high content of humor despite having a pretty serious story.

While there are easily over 150 distinct recruitable characters in the game, there are only three that are central to the plot: Jack Russell, a rude, cheerful teenager who plans on being a knight; Ridley Silverlake, a smart, proper, well-off young lady who wants nothing to do with him (at least at first); and Ganz Rothschild, a polite, genteel man, who is their superior in the Rose Cachon brigade. This doesn't last long.

After one successful mission, what should be a simple Fetch Quest goes awry and Ridley suffers a debilitating injury to the point where she's bedridden. As a consequence for their failure to protect her, both Jack and Ganz are expelled from the knighthood because of her Overprotective Dad. From there, they both try to join Theater Vancoor, the warrior guild, but Ganz fails the test and ends up in the Void Community (the thief guild) instead.


As Jack and Ganz try to adjust to their new lives, a series of seemingly unrelated incidents begins to occur. Ridley begins experiencing strange headaches and speaking in a voice that is not her own. The dreaded disease Algandars, said to be the only thing capable of fully killing the immortal elves, makes a reappearance after being gone for centuries. Tensions between the humans and non-humans skyrocket as three particular individuals become prominent in the politics of Radiata: Zane, human-hating leader of the light elves; Lord Lucian, a mysterious courtesan of Radiata Castle who displays frightening Chessmaster capabilities; and Cross Ward, Ridley's Jerkass fiancé.

The game takes place in real time, albeit with the typical video game compression. While many games incorporate some method of this, Radiata Stories is one of the few where keeping track of the hour is crucial to gameplay, due to the fact that the majority of "free time" between missions provides only brief snatches where Jack is able to interact with other characters and the like before setting out once more. Furthering the theme of realism, Jack can interact with most objects in the game, mostly by kicking them.


Not to be confused with Radiant Historia, a similarly-named game that inherited a large portion of Radiata's production team.

This game provides examples of the following:

  • 11th-Hour Ranger: The most powerful characters for both sides cannot be recruited until late in the game. The human side gives the player the leaders of each guild (particularly Elwen, who has an attack of 438), as well as Natalie, while the non-humans have the two orc leaders, Galvados (460) and JJ (430), as well as the black goblin chief, Gruel (410). Valkyrie takes the cake. Recruitable only in the post game for both paths, she starts at Level 77. Once she reach Level 99, Valkyrie's attack goes to 502. To drive the point home, her race is stated as "God".
  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: The Path of the Spider, a series of interconnecting tunnels that forms the sewage system beneath Radiata, has wide pathways and it is easy to get lost in them.
  • Adult Fear:
    • Jasne is worrisome when his only daughter is about to leave on her first mission. The fact that she comes home severely injured from one of them gives him even more reason to worry, especially when she runs away.
    • Rynka has a reason to worry when her son Cody wanders off and even more so when she thinks that Ganz has kidnapped him.
  • Aerith and Bob: Quite an extensive example, in fact; the title contains rather plain names, like Jack, Jill, Nick, and Lily; to somewhat uncommon names, such as Iris, Adina, Leona, and Santos; to downright bizarre names such as Zida, Few, Chatt, and Zeranium. All of these seem to have no racial or gender boundaries, as both humans and non-humans, males and females alike, exhibit this vast range.
  • Aggressive Negotiations: The "bluff" at Earth Valley turned into a massacre, thanks to Cross. There were no negotiations at all.
  • Alas, Poor Villain: No matter how much you disagree with Zane's reasons for wanting humanity eradicated, you have to admit that hearing him sob before his brother's grave is extremely heart-wrenching.
  • The Alcoholic: Jarvis, Jack's sergeant upon joining Theater Vancoor is introduced stumbling out of a bar with a flushed face and slurred speech.
  • All There in the Manual: The surname of several characters is revealed only in the manga adaptation, the list goes:
    • Gerald Nickson
    • Thanos Benz
    • Alicia Alen
    • Jarvis Mondair
    • Daniel Arthur
    • Herz Ashabee
    • Lily Mirias
    • Nocturne Ryner
  • Always Chaotic Evil: The way the light elves view humans, and humans orcs; violent barbarians.
  • Always Identical Twins: Adina and Elena are impossible to tell apart except for personal style choices.
  • Ambiguous Gender Identity: There are a couple of characters that fit this:
    • Charlie, while appearing to be just your average flamboyant guy, is seen exiting the women's restroom in one scene. Additionally, he mentions at one point having a female roommate, not that coed rooming situations don't exist but it's definitely not as common.
    • In Pinky's Friends List entry, his gender is listed as "Male?"
    • Subverted with Felix as he very clearly identifies as male, even if others mistake him as female.
  • Ambiguous Robots: At first, Sebastian simply looks like a short human in armor. However, if you go into Star's room at the right time, you might catch him charging up.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Jack, seeing as how he's able to take Charlie out on the fireworks date, might be bisexual, but it is unclear.
  • Ambiguously Gay:
    • Gil on the non-humans side, is one of the light elves' strongest fighters, an assassin, and well known for his poetry. There's a side plot where Franz, a dark elf who's obsessed with martial arts, challenges Gil. Gil beats him in about two seconds, but gives the boy some encouraging words nonetheless. They then run off into the sunset which confuses the onlooking Jack.
    • In his friendbook entry, Charlie is said to like "cute people and strong warriors" and on his relationship chart in the official strategy guide, he is shown to have an admiration for Cross.
  • Ancestral Weapon: The Arbitrator, a powerful sword that Jack's father, Cairn, possessed, was passed down to him by his sister, Adele.
  • And I Must Scream: The fate of the elves who become afflicted with Algandars' disease; this ends with them being encased in a cocoon for eternity.
  • And Man Grew Proud:
    • Thanos seeks a rare suit of armor that allows the wearer to fight for 24 hours straight. It's actually a business suit.
    • The dragons attempt to wipe out humanity every time it becomes a threat to the world, and yet some of them somehow survive every time.
  • Anti-Villain:
    • Aphelion, the Silver Dragon; while he might be a brilliant schemer, and some of his actions might make him seem to be a Well-Intentioned Extremist at best, it's hard to label him as a villain of any caliber. Especially since his goals involve saving the human race from a total reset, despite the fact that it meant murdering his own kin. Sure, he tries to kill Ridley, but given that she had, by that point, crossed the line into being a literal Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds...
    • Ridley and Zane move this territory because, as unfair as it is, humans apparently are to blame for the Algandars disease that's killing the elves and driving humans mad because they're killing dragons, i.e. the dragons of the World's Cosmic Order. Cairn killed the Water Dragon and then the Earth Dragon was killed defending the dwarves from the human's invasion of Earth Valley. If they don't hit the Reset Button then a different race is on the chopping block.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Played with:
    • Averted by Ganz, who is genuinely friendly and goes out of his way to be polite.
    • Lord Larks, the head of Radiata, is a good and compassionate leader, if a little strict.
    • Jasne is kind of a meddling dick when it comes to Ridley's life, but he does all he can to avoid war with the non-humans.
    • Lucian works behind the scenes to keep humanity alive.
    • Anastasia, Dwight, and Cross are all arrogant, greedy, and have questionable morals, though it's hard to call them outright "evil".
    • Downplayed by Ridley, who is just a little stuck up at first.
  • Armor-Piercing Slap: Adele's favorite way of teaching both Jack and his enemies a lesson is a sharp smack to the face.
  • Aww, Look! They Really Do Love Each Other: Jack and Ridley's relationship started with her beating him in a tournament. As teammates, they're antagonistic, but when Ridley is injuried, Jack becomes protective of her and the first thing she does after waking up is check on him.
  • Badass Longcoat: Each path gets an exclusive suit of armor that features a coat, and one of them boasts some of the best defense in the game..
  • Badass Normal: Subverted. Most of the ordinary townspeople are completely useless in combat.
  • Badass Preacher: Godwin, Achilles, Rocky, and Kain, to name a few, are combat-oriented Olacion Order members. Fernando is the most badass of these. His attack can reach upward of 408.
  • Bald of Awesome: Dynas is the head of the Radiata Knights and his cue ball is as shiny as his helmet. Jack was on the verge of becoming his fanboy before he was kicked out of the knights, though he didn't like the bald look.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: The Olacion Order members are split into bare-banded martial artists and healers. There's a sidequest where Jack can fight them duel-style.
  • Berserk Button:
    • Humans infected with the Algandars plague will go off on a violent streak after being provoked by the most petty things such as not winning a lottery ticket.
    • While Jack is an overall easygoing person through most of the game, some people and things seem to trigger this in him. A notable example is when he quickly loses his temper and becomes very hostile whenever he sees Gawain, who he believes to be responsible for the killing of his father Cairn. However, when Jack finds out the real story of his father's death, Gawain becomes a close friend of his.
  • Bifauxnen: Her priest robes might give it away, but one will probably not realize Vitas is a girl if crossing her path at night.
  • Big-Bad Ensemble: The situation isn't the fault of any one individual, as the main plot is the result of a Gambit Pileup meeting a Celestial Deadline and there isn't any particular individual or group of individuals who could be considered the main source of conflicts. The way events escalate can be mostly pinned down to three people:
    • Zane is the leader of the light elves and, later, the non-humans in general. He is a racist who wants to kill all humans for personal reasons rather than humanity's disruption of the balance. He mostly stays offscreen in the human path and hides his rather bloodthirsty nature when dealing with Jack in the non-human route.
    • Cross Ward, who is mostly to blame for the war igniting when he slaughters the dwarves. He also was the one who sent the blood orcs to attack the elves, triggering Jack and Ganz's expulsion as well as Ridley's receiving of a transpiritation. He becomes an ally of Jack's in the human route - in theory, anyway - and in the non-human route, he is killed prior to the final confrontation. Also, the results of the second event above were largely out of his control.
    • Aphelion, a.k.a. Lord Lucian, the most competent chessmaster in the game and the only one who really knows what's going on. He's also the Final Boss of both paths. Like the others, in both routes, he's not the cause of the conflict. In the human route, the player learns just how well-intentioned his plan is, while in the non-human route, he's a Giant Space Flea from Nowhere.
  • Big Bad Wannabe: This is subverted with Radian, as he complains pre-battle about not having a larger role in the game after being mocked for his appearance by Jack. He then proceeds to be incredibly difficult for Jack to beat.
  • Big "NO!": Jack does this a few times, both for comedy and drama. The very first one is lampshaded by Leonard:
    (Leonard explains how he and Jack are sharing the stinky, dirty Trainee's Room)
    Jack (camera spinning around him): NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
    Jack (quietly): Fine...
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • Any French speaker gets to marvel at the names of the various brigades.
    • The assassin Lily is also known as "Vice," or the White Princess. The German word meaning "white?" Weiss. Now if you were Japanese, and trying to translate that to German, how would you spell it?
    • Genius' last name is a misspelling of the Japanese translation. The official English translation of his last name is "Weissheit" (with two s's) meaning "whiteness" in German. However, if you take out just one of the s's to spell "Weisheit", it means "wisdom".
  • Bishōnen: Felix, Franklin, Lucian, and Gil, to name a few.
  • Black Knight: Jack, when he equips the Demon Mail, looks the part but he acts the same.
  • Blood Knight: Gerald, Caesar, and Jack all love to fight.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Natalie's "relationship" with Lord Jasne is her fawning over him while carrying out his orders.
  • Bonus Boss: The four Elemental Dragons, Radian, Cairn Russell, Lenneth Valkyrie, Lezard, Gabriel Celesta, the Ethereal Queen, and Quasar, the Gold Dragon can be fought if the player wants additional challenge.
  • Bonus Dungeon: The Dragon Lair Cave, and the Distortion Corridor are extra areas the player can explore after completing the main game.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Recruiting Elwen before the post-game is this. You have to defeat her in one on one combat, and her level is a fair amount higher than what you need to be at to finish the main story. And unlike most characters you can recruit by defeating (such as Gerald earlier on), you cannot cheese Elwen with poison or fire sacks as she is immune to all status effects that would be of any use to you. So you either have to cheese her with Tsuchinoko Dumplings (which are very rare) and Volty Attacks or simply be leveled enough to defeat her on normal terms. Either way, if you can recruit her before defeating the final boss, you almost certainly don't need her to defeat the final boss.
  • Camp Gay: Charlie's description states that he likes cute people and strong warriors. There's a cutscene of him entering the ladies' restroom in Radiata Castle without objection from anyone, just after Jack is scolded by Margaret if he attempts to enter. He's also one of the player's potential alternative "love interests."
  • Canon Foreigner: What are Lenneth Valkyrie and Lezard doing in Radiata?
  • Chekhov's Gun: The orb that Jack obtains during the Stone of Miracles mission. Even though it wasn't the stone he was originally after, Kain believes that it will utterly alter Jack's fate. The orb is later used to either slay the wind dragon (on the human path) or the fire dragon (on the non-human path), even if the latter wasn't Jack's intention.
  • The Chessmaster: Lord Lucian, a.k.a. the Silver Dragon Aphelion manipulates others both in the castle and in the guilds to stir the situation towards his goals.
  • Com Mons: There are several characters in each guild who Jack is forced to befriend as a stepping stone to the more badass leaders, who won't join unless everyone else does.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Fire Mountain has streams of lava and stones heated red with it. Yet neither Jack nor anyone else has a problem with the heat.
  • Coordinated Clothes: Adina and Elena, twins, dress the same. Also when the Color Contrast trope is additionally applied, Nogueira and Zane count as Nogueira dons a red robe and Zane a blue one.
  • Corrupt Church: The New Faction of the Olacion Order has decided to dedicate themselves to making money instead of helping people. Oddly enough, several members are basically decent - if snobby - individuals personally loyal to their jerkass boss, Anastasia Ryan.
  • Covers Always Lie: If you take a look at the cover, Jack is wearing the Divine Coat armor with the Arbitrator as his weapon. In-game, you can't have both of them at the same time because the Divine Coat is only available in the human route, while the Arbitrator is only available in the non-human route.
  • Cute Bruiser: Miranda just as capable of healing you as she is punching you into the next town.
  • Cute Clumsy Girl: The first time you meet Marietta, you only see her legs. The rest of her is buried underneath a pile of crates.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Thanos, the receptionist at Theater Vancoor, has as many sharp words as the guild warriors have blades.
  • Death by Sex: It is stated that the birth of the Algandars disease was an ancient light elf king marrying a human woman. Thus, it can implied that the fate of any light elf that copulates with a human is apparently eternal imprisonment in a leafy cocoon.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Ridley is dismissive and snobby to Jack in the first part of the game but thinks fondly of him after their second mission. This is possibly due to her injury causing an increased dependence on others or an effect of hearing how Jack took care of her while she was unconscious.
  • Despair Event Horizon:
    • During the human path, Jack is saddened by Ganz leaving and traumatized by several character deaths. The final straw for him was when he failed to protect Ridley from the Silver Dragon; even after avenging her, he is grief-stricken and leaves his home in Radiata behind.
    • In the non-human path, Ganz is so shocked by his father's death that he chooses to stay in the Gold Dragon's castle as it collapses, knowing full well that it will kill him. It is also possible his departure in the human path is this; since the real story of Cairn's death is not revealed, he must accept that Jack will eventually kill Gawain.
  • The Ditz: Clive is a space case who doesn't understand the purpose of "watching" one's client.
  • Don't Try This at Home: The description for the umbrella weapon suggests to not use it as a method of combat in reality. Best listen to that.
  • Downer Ending: Given the game has multiple endings, there had to be one. Although, depending on how you look at it, both could be considered downer endings. If the player opts to side with the humans, Ridley dies and Jack leaves Radiata, too shellshocked to stay after all he's been through. If the player decides to join the non-humans, Ridley survives and Ganz, instead, is the one to die; she and Jack then return to a Radiata that seems to be inexplicably deserted and filled with glowing globs of unknown origin. The game is deliberately vague about the circumstances of the latter ending, although an actual sequel has not been announced. The most probable explanation is that it represents Ridley, who is now the awakened Gold Dragon, remaking the world, while still keeping Jack by her side.
  • Driven to Suicide: In the non-human path, as the final dungeon starts to collapse with the death of Aphelion, Ganz silently shakes his head at Jack and turns around to stay with his father's corpse, forcing Jack and Ridley to leave him behind to die.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady:
    • Felix, and possibly Lucian, are mistaken for women. The former especially has trouble with this trait in regards to other characters.
    • One Let's Player of the game once remarked that Zane looks just like his brother "except more like a chick". If it weren't for his beard he would probably be more convincing.
  • Duel to the Death: Downplayed. While no one will die, other characters will challenge Jack to a fight if he kicks them too much.
  • Dumb Is Good: Clive, a country hick, is the nicest guy in the game. Not only will he be Jack's friend without a Fetch Quest but he'll come to the guild and volunteer.
  • Dying Declaration of Hate: Dynas to Cross after Cross impales him for threatening to report him to Larks on the non-human path:
    Dynas: Cross! You'll hell!
  • Epic Flail: Dynas and Gawain both fight with flails.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Felix does not like the male attention that he gets. Notice a pattern here?
  • Evil Brit:
    • Cross' accent makes him sound like a stereotypical English noble from this period more interested in personal glory than protecting those in his care.
    • While Lord Lucian/Aphelion is not evil per se, he is definitely an antagonist and the fact that he is the final boss no matter which side you choose is as good of a reason as any.
  • Evil Plan: As with Big Bad, this is also averted as there is no one villain's plot that encompasses the whole game. It's more all the candidates' plans clashing until only one left is to finish their own.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Fire Mountain, as well as the attack descriptions for the Vareth Institute's various staffs.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Gerald, the Vancoor Number Two, wears one. The younger members thinks he's cool.
  • Fake Difficulty: Several stats have been tweaked to force the player to keep recruiting. For example, there is no magic stat, so, except for healers, all spellcasters go obsolete as time goes on, as opposed to melee types who don't experience (as much) change in usefulness over time. Jack's stats are atrocious when compared to some of the other characters, with the exception of luck.
  • Fantastic Racism: Racial antagonism drives a good portion of the plot:
    • Cross is willing to commit atrocities against communities of non-humans, and there are a number of hints that said non-humans were, and might still be, heavily discriminated against.
    • Plenty of non-humans cross the line from understandable mistrust to unjustifiable racial hatred. Zane, the light elf's leader, wants nothing more than to wipe out every last human being in the world; not because they caused a cosmic imbalance, but because he unfairly blames them for the death of his brother, who died from the Algandars disease.
  • First Law of Tragicomedies: The game starts out very goofy and remains so for most of its running time, with serious moments scattered around. However, as both paths near their end, the comedy dies out and the story gets very serious, and the game ends with either a Bittersweet Ending or Downer Ending, with the ending where Ganz basically kills himself and humanity is implied to be destroyed being the Bittersweet Ending!
  • Fish out of Water: Ganz may be the knight who believes the most in chivalry but he ends up at the Void Community, as mentioned previously. It's justified in that he fell in with honorable bandits.
  • Funny Afro: Pinky, a manager in the Void Community, has one, but no jokes are made about it.
  • Gainax Ending: In the ending for the non-human path, Jack, whose voice echoes, walks into a strangely empty Radiata with Ridley, who is glowing like the Gold Dragon.
  • Gambit Pileup: There's the humans who want to do business by exploiting the dwarves; the dwarves who want to make more money at the expense of the humans; the elves who generally want to wipe out humanity because they don't want to be trapped in a cocoon for eternity and believe this is the solution; the orcs who just like fighting and eating; the dragons who are trying to preserve a cosmic balance, and that's without going into individuals. Cross is an arrogant gloryhound who screws everyone else for his goals. Zane is an anti-human racist who wants to commit genocide. Aphelion wants to bump off the other dragons to save the humans. Ridley opposes him by trying to wake up the Gold Dragon and start the Changeover and Jack who wants to protect Ridley even after finding this out. All of the characters (except for Cross and Zane) are more or less sympathetic.
  • Game-Breaking Injury: Ridley takes a bad blow from a Blood Orc and is out of action for a while.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: In the non-human path, your final battle against Elwen can be won, though winning isn't mandatory, but the fight a little later against Cross is unwinnable. Yet the last fight against Cross near the end of the game is much easier to win than fighting Elwen, and this time he has soldiers backing him up.
  • Garden Garment: Both light and dark elves dress in this style to future contrast the humans; the light elves have their "grass clothes" and the dark elves with their "leaf clothes".
  • Gender-Blender Name:
    • Ridley. She certainly had Jack fooled:
    "I have to fight Ridley Silverlake, right? He's dead meat..."
    • Arnold sounds like even though this is merely an alias.
  • Golem: Melissa Mark II is a giant creature made of clay and animated with magic. Presumably Sebastian is one as well but made of metal.
  • Gonk:
    • Joaquel, a member of Void, is huge and hideous and disfigured.
    • Anastasia looks like a pig in too much finery.
  • Good Shepherd: The Old Faction of the Olacion Order is composed of pious and good-hearted clerics.
  • Gray and Grey Morality: The non-humans oppose humanity for reasons running the gamut from justified retaliation for past misdeeds to because the humans caused a caused a cosmic imbalance that threatens all the races of the world, but are led by a genocidal xenophobe. The humans fight for self-preservation, but many of them are haughty and xenophobic, especially Cross. Both sides have good reasons to wage war upon each other, and both sides have heroes, but they also each have villains and considerable amounts of blood on their hands.
  • "Groundhog Day" Loop: While the game has a more realistic experience than the standard RPG towns populated with eerily identical cookie cutter residents who say the same things ad inifinitum, the characters will repeat the same list of activities every day, with a few exceptions.
  • Guyliner: While it is uncertain whether Zane is wearing makeup or if that's just how he naturally looks, the fact that he is the only light elf who has green eyelids and green nails suggests the former.
  • Hard Work Hardly Works: Subverted. Every Hopeless Boss Fight is against people older, or at least more experienced, than Jack. Gerald personally defies it:
    Jack: Awww! I didn't even come CLOSE to winning!.
    Gerald: What did you expect, fool? I was a swordsman years before you were born.
  • Helmets Are Hardly Heroic: Averted. Most of Theater Vancoor's members wear helmets that completely cover their face, with you only able to see their faces in their bios, though many of the knights' faces are obscured even without their helmets. And Jack himself can get a couple armors that have helmets, though most do not.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Several characters do this, often deeply affecting their friends and loved ones:
    • Nogueira contracts the Algandars disease when he saves Ridley and Hap by performing the transpiritation ritual on them
    • Gawain saves Ganz from being penetrated by Aphelion's sword by taking the blow himself.
    • On the human path, Dynas saves Cross from foolishly being killed; when Cross lunges at the fire dragon, who is taking a large breath, Dynas jumps in the way of the resulting fire blast and is killed.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: The first battle against Ridley is unwinnable; her HP states: ??? There's also a few later where the game progresses whether the player wins or loses, with slight variations in dialogue being the only consequence. All of these fights end when you are hit with the boss's Volty Blast, even if you survive the attack.
  • Hot Witch: Morgan is a professor at Vareth and dresses in a fashion for another profession.
  • Humans Are Special: Lord Lucien/Aphelion is a fan of humanity. Despite the fact that the cosmic balance of the world sometimes requires the destruction of humanity, every time the dragons strike them down they manage to rebuild. He's sick of a system blatantly in favor of every race but one, and is willing to kill his fellow dragons to get rid of it.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: The whole reason the light elves and many of the other races feel hatred and distrust toward humans is because they, from the non-humans' point of view, are considered selfish, evil beings who are ruining the balance of the world. To be fair, they're not entirely wrong on that last bit; the balance and all that.
  • Imagined Innuendo: When Jack takes over Fort Helencia, he decides to bask in his glory by (jokingly) telling Natalie that he will spare her life if she does exactly as he says. Natalie misinterprets this until Jack clarifies that all he wanted her to do was "grovel a bit".
  • Improbable Weapon User: Quite a few characters use various forms of cutlery as weapons, while others use either musical or personal instruments, or discarded trash. Elef, the foreman of Radiata's bridge builders, for instance, uses his iron tobacco pipe.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: The Arbitrator for the non-human path is the second strongest one-handed sword in the game.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: Holy Sword Gram has an attack rating of 170 and it is obtained after beating Valkyrie. Despite supposedly being a legendary sword re-forged by the gods, she had two. This makes sense when you remember that in Valkyrie Profile, she can make more than one Gram.
  • Insufferable Genius: Genius will make sure you know he's smarter than you.
  • In Vino Veritas: Jarvis can become quite aggressive when he's had one too many.
  • Joke Character: Loads of examples, particularly those who have no affiliation with the guilds and work mundane jobs, such as farmers, doctors, nurses, and the like.
  • Joke Weapon: Many mundane objects such as an umbrella and different kinds of farming tools can be used as weapons.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: The best one-handed and two-handed swords available for purchase are katanas. However, the best swords period are not.
  • Killed Offscreen: Hap and Nogueira and presumably Zane on the non-human side, die offscreen. Although his presumed death occurs after the time frame of the game, Ridley confirms to Jack under the Ressan Tree that Zane has Algandars, which is pretty much a death sentence in itself.
  • Lady and Knight: Jack appoints himself Ridley's White Knight in the in the non-human path and not only protects her but lifts her spirits with endearingly corny jokes. In personality, they're the bright couple, but to the humans, they're the dark couple. Gerald praises him for having the balls to turn against his entire race for the sake of his girl. For her part, Ridley is a bright lady ojou who is trying to do what she think is right, and is grateful for Jack's support.
  • Lady of War: Ridley, Elwen, Alicia, Natalie, Lily, Iris, and Valkyrie, to name a few, are graceful and skilled fighters. Elwen in particular; being of stunning beauty, it's surprising to see a woman in such a position without making her into a tsundere or something similar.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: To get the leaders of the warrior, mage, and priest guild, you have to recruit everyone in the guild, then talk to (and fight in the case of the former two) the leader of the guild. For the thieves guild, you have to recruit the other three leaders, then do a short quest that ends with fighting the thieves guild leader. Recruiting everyone else in the guild is optional.
  • Lemony Narrator: Some characters have snarky descriptions in the Friends List.
  • Lethal Joke Character: While there's likely a few more, Franz, the hammy dark elf who challenges Gil, has the only attack that knocks the Ethereal Queen off her feet. He's also quite fast and does notable damage for such a minor character.
  • Limit Break: The "Volty Blast" special attack, which is limited to a small number of individuals. This includes Jack, who can learn one for each of the four weapon types.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Averted. Not only is Jack able to change his clothing, but the vast majority of Radiata's population has both day and night attire.
  • Living Forever Is Awesome: Everyone who has immortality loves it, and Aphelion's plan involves preserving his own as a nice bonus to his main goal. However, Ganz and Ridley argue that mortality isn't bad either.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: There are a lot of recruitable characters, most of whom are, unfortunately, useless to some degree. The player cannot recruit all of them in a single playthrough.
  • Lovable Coward: Star's excuse for why he won't go someplace or why he lost a duel are funny.
  • Macho Camp: Gabriel Celesta, of all people, is quite muscular and hammy. In almost any other appearance, he's a pretty boy.
  • Magikarp Power: While there are plenty of examples, Leona is the most prominent. She starts at level 3, which is incredibly low at the point in the game the player can recruit her. Through grinding, her attack stat can reach upward of 398. Since her weapon is a magical book instead of a staff, she has the ability to fire multiple magical lasers, which can decimate even the toughest enemies.
  • The Medic:
    • Morfinn is a literal example, coupled with some Harmful Healing due to his curiosity.
    • Several members from the Olacion Order also fit but they use White Magic instead of medicine.
  • Medium Awareness: Radian's "Why wasn't I the main character of this game?!"
  • Meaningful Name:
    • Genius is a genius.
    • Kain is the High Priest of the Olacion Order.
    • Nyx is, presumably, a vampire.
    • Morgan is a witch.
    • Cross, the most arrogant and insubordinate of the knights, leads the Noire Mouton brigade, which is French for "black sheep".
  • Metal Slime: The dagol tortoises, tsuchinoko, and metal tortoises are extremely rare creatures which can drop obscenely useful items upon defeat. Also, the Killer Queen, who you can only fight once in the entire game, drops obscene amounts of exp and one of each type of berry in the game.
  • Missing Mom: All three members of the main trio have mothers that are, at most, only briefly mentioned but never actually shown. The one exception may be Ridley's mother who is at least visible in a painting in her bedroom. While it is concluded on the non-human side that Jack's mother is dead, it is never explicitly stated what became of Ganz and Ridley's mothers.
  • Moveset Clone: Jack and Ridley, if the former's wielding an axe as well.
  • Multiple Endings: There are two possible endings for the game, depending on which side of the war the player has Jack align. One is a Downer Ending, and the other is a Bittersweet Ending.
  • Murder Is the Best Solution: Jack's general idea for how to solve a problem is to kill the person causing it. He gets chewed out for this in the non-human path by JJ, an orc, of all people.
  • No Cutscene Inventory Inertia: This is played straight yet also averted. It is averted in that Jack will always have whatever armor he is wearing on in cutscenes, but it is played straight with your weapon. No matter what weapon you are using, even if it isn't a one handed sword, Jack will always pull out the first one handed sword he starts with, except right before the final boss of the non-human path where he pulls out the Arbitrator instead. In the human-path, he pulls out any one handed sword you may have equipped at that time.
  • Odd Friendship: Ganz, a knight, eventually befriends Rynka and Flau, two members of Void.
  • Official Couple: Jack and Ridley are implied to be romantic in the non-human path, given Jack's indirect Love Confession and the fact that they are Holding Hands in their final scene. In the human path, they're Star-Crossed Lovers.
  • Old Master: Curtis, the Vareth Magic Institute's head advisor, and Fernando, leader of the Olacion Order's Old Faction, are some of the mightiest characters the player can recruit. There is Also, Zeranium, Godwin, and Ortoroz. If you're an elderly person in Radiata Stories who isn't a farmer, you will kick ass.
  • Opening the Sandbox: The game is initially pretty restrictive in where the player can go and what they can do; just a few places in Radiata castle and the two missions as a knight are straightward. Once Jack joins Theater Vancoor, the player can begin to explore, recruit, do sidequests, etc.
  • Ojou: Lady Ridley Silverlake starts out as the stuck-up and bossy type and In the non-human path, she mellows into the sweetheart type.
  • Our Elves Are Different: Universally united in their hatred of humans, to the point of declaring war for the sole purpose of exterminating them. Furthermore, dark elves are, technically, half-elves, while the light elves are portrayed more closely to the standard faerie.
  • Peek-a-Bangs: Lily and her mentor, Iris, have these. It's fitting for a void member.
  • Pet the Dog: Despite being a generally horrible person, at the end of the Human path, Cross sacrifices his life to warn Jack that Lucian is really Aphelion, the Silver Dragon. He could have survived if he had just played dead.
  • Pink Means Feminine: Natalie's pink armor. In fact, female knights in general wear pink.
  • Plant Person: The light and dark elves count as this due to their plant-like hair; it's a nature thing that contrasts them with the industrial humans and dwarves.
  • Player Character: Jack. No, seriously, this is worth noting: the player can recruit tons of individuals, but they remain just that: individuals. Jack is the game's only controllable character.
  • Punny Name:
    • Jack Russell is an energetic young man, relatively short in stature, who is nonetheless quite fierce and not to be underestimated. It's hard to believe this wasn't on purpose.
    • Adele, Jack's sister, is named Airedale in the Japanese version.
    • Cairn is the third person in the Russell family to be named after a terrier.
    • Ridley's original last name is Timberlake.
  • The Quiet One: Coco's a reserved dark elf who isn't use to talking with others.
  • Rapunzel Hair: Zane and Nogueira have everyone beat as their hair is so long, they have to keep it wrapped around their entire body to keep it from dragging on the ground and potentially tripping them up. They also happen to be the rulers of the Light and Dark elves, respectively, thus implying this is a status symbol. Lord Lucian and Yuri also qualify.
  • Reality Ensues: You can recruit a wide variety of civilians to your party from chefs to construction workers to children with slingshots. This doesn't mean they'll be worth a damn in combat though.
  • Rewarding Vandalism: Jack can interact with most objects in the game. As a result, the player will occasionally receive money or items.
  • Robe and Wizard Hat: Morgan and Curtis, both professors at Vareth, sport the classic look.
  • Rose-Haired Sweetie: Alicia has pink hair and is characterized by her friendliness.
  • Sadistic Choice: The player cannot save both Ridley and the rest of humanity in the same ending. Similarly, if one chooses the path wherein she and the world are liberated, Ganz dies instead.
  • Saintly Church: The Oralcion Old Faction are interested in helping people. For example, Miranda fully heals Jack whenever he talks to her, for free, and others are also polite and helpful.
  • Samurai: Caesar has the armor, the weapon, the topknot, the battle mentality etc. Jack may count, too, if he equips the correct armor.
  • Screw Destiny: Jack ultimately rejects fate at the end of the human path and prevents the Changeover.
  • Secret Identity: Cornelia is secretly Rachel. It's hush hush though, so don't tell anyone.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Ganz dresses up like a fatter, older Claude at one point.
    • Jack can dress up as Fayt.
    • Cornelia looks similar to Sakura and Momo. Her schtick is also similar to another Momo. Additionally, in the Japanese version, her Rachel persona is a Nami Tamaki cameo. She even holds nightly concerts, singing the game's OST.
    • The Black Goblin Pietro is one for Dragon Ball Z. To recruit him, you need to beat him three times, with him getting stronger each time. At one point, he states he is going "Super Goblin". Once he's recruited, if you talk to him, he'll say:
    "Me make you legendariest warrior! First, dye hair yellow! All legendariest warriors has yellow hair!"
    • The Training Device accessory that can be acquired in the game is a reference to the classic manga/anime series, Kyojin no Hoshi. The accessory looks a spring-loaded harness of the same kind that the protagonist Hyuuma wore under his clothes in order to undergo Training from Hell.
  • Shown Their Work: The toadstool powder's description explains it is made out of Amanita virosa spores. This is an actual, and fatal, fungus that is extremely poisonous when eaten.
  • Shrinking Violet: Leona, Gene, and Rolec are all shy people. The former hides behind her books, the second spends his time with flowers, and the last in a bathroom.
  • Single-Minded Twins: Elena and Adina are both kinda snotty and loyal to Anastasia, though their viewpoints differ in concerns to who is most important in their lives.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Star would make you think he is the best warrior in the kingdom, but he's only a novice in Vancoor.
  • Solo-Character Run: The final boss is so powerful against your party members that it's easier to fight the boss alone rather than blindly spending potions on them. Being an action RPG, it's possible to kill the final boss without getting a scratch when you know its pattern (albeit taking a long time).
  • Story Branching: The game splits into two very different stories depending on a choice made mid game.
  • Stroke the Beard: Zane is seen doing this a couple times in the game when plotting or speaking to allies. He does it even more in the "Song of Ridley" manga.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: The Knight Selection Trials has a clear dissonance. At the start, the judge says it is a "completely unbiased assement of your abilities". At the end, Jack passes after getting knocked out in the first round because his dad's a national hero.
  • Take It to the Bridge: In the non-human route, the final encounter with Elwen occurs on a bridge. Though the actual fight screen takes place on a wide battlefield as normal.
  • Third-Person Person: Herz will mention her name in every sentence.
  • Tomboyish Name: Ridley is the best example, though a few others skirt close to this. Jack thought his first opponent was a boy before he saw her pigtails.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Not necessarily big spoilers or anything, but one of the trailers spoils Jack walking. This is the human side ending. There's also a scene where he draws his sword in an epic fashion manner is the final battle of the human side.
  • Tranquil Fury: Gerald often does this:
    • When Jarvis gets stinking drunk at Carl's pub in the middle of the day, and in the presence of Jack and Daniel, Gerald happens to walk into the pub, smiles as he greets the two before dragging the very nervous sergeant out onto the street. You are left to guess what happens next.
    • Gerald appears to be calm when he gets up and leaves his office when Jack delivers a letter to him, which turns out to be a challenge to a fist-fight by Nocturne.
  • Tsundere:
    • Ridley is tsun tsun to everyone from her arranged fiancé to her commanding officer and stays that way. As the story progresses, her dere dere sides emerges more and more around "her Jack".
    • Lily is similarly aloof and dismissive of Jack, yet she's one of the "date options" for the fireworks.
    • Morgan and Urusla as well.
  • Underrated and Overleveled: The huge cast of characters guarantees at least a few will be mundane people with little or no combat training. The inability to focus the plot on each character also means that the developers didn't have time to give in-universe justification for everyone's combat capabilities.
  • Unwanted Harem: Felix has a lot of male fans, much to his chagrin. This is likely due to his looks.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Jack is a pawn for Lucian to carry out his plan of killing the other dragons. He doesn't realize it until Lucian kills Ridley right in front of him.
  • Upper-Class Twit: Star is a nobleman who acts like an over-confident fob.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Zane's very first onscreen appearance features him breaking down into tears at his brother's grave.
  • Villain Takes an Interest: Zane couldn't care any less about Jack or even Ridley's existence until he learns how they can be useful to him, and thus allowing them both to fight in his army.
  • Violence Really Is the Answer: Fortunately for Jack, the "kill everything" approach is correct more often than not. Unfortunately for everyone else, the same approach is incorrect in two very big ways: when Cairn kills the Water Dragon in the prologue and when Cross slaughters the dwarves just before the split.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: Herz uses her ability to impersonate others.
  • Walking the Earth: In the human path, Jack leaves Radiata because of his guilt in Ridley's death.
  • War Is Hell: The war is definitely bad for both sides. There's death, there's tragedy, and the only person who says War Is Glorious is an asshole.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist:
    • Aphelion does his best to prevent the war from happening and tries to stop it as quickly as possible, as all he wants is to prevent the world from being constantly reset because the system is blatantly in favor of every race except humanity. It's a real shame his plan requires the death of the dragons and Ridley.
    • Most non-humans (though not Zane) are this. They're supporting the genocide of humanity to preserve the rest of the races and correct the cosmic imbalance caused when humanity gets out of control.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: Many of the recruitable characters have passive abilities that are only useful in very specific situations, if ever.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Gawain gives Jack a verbal and physical beat down after latter slays the Wind Dragon:
    "You're the one...WHO SLAYS DRAGONS FOR SPORT!"
  • Whip It Good: Iris fights with whips.
  • Wide Open Sandbox: Once the player is fully allowed to explore Radiata, they are free to try sidequest before moving the story forward.
  • You Are Worth Hell: The opinion of the Ancient Elf King to his queen, and Jack to Ridley, is that their love is worth the consequences. Gerald hopes to find someone he loves this much someday.
  • You Can't Thwart Stage One: Averted when Jack looks up the password to the Goblin Cemetery. He realizes the answer is obviously on the last page and skips to the end.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Natalie has green hair. No one else has green hair.
  • Zettai Ryouiki: Ridley qualifies as a Rank S; Rank A boots, twin tails and tsundere attitude.


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