Monday, June 25, 2007

The Grand List Of Console Role Playing Game Clichés

Mad Latinist sent me this list. I don't play console games very much (I'm a PC guy) but the cliches of the genre are often cross-platform. Here are some samples:

  • "No! My beloved peasant village!"
    The hero's home town, city, slum, or planet will usually be annihilated in a spectacular fashion before the end of the game, and often before the end of the opening scene.

  • Let's Start From The Very Beginning (Yuna Rule)
    Whenever there is a sequel to an RPG that features the same main character as the previous game, that character will always start with beginner skills. Everything that they learned in the previous game will be gone, as will all their ultra-powerful weapons and equipment.

  • "Silly Squall, bringing a sword to a gunfight..."
    No matter what timeframe the game is set in -- past, present, or future -- the main hero and his antagonist will both use a sword for a weapon. (Therefore, you can identify your antagonist pretty easily right from the start of the game just by looking for the other guy who uses a sword.) These swords will be far more powerful than any gun and often capable of distance attacks.
  • Dimensional Transcendence Principle
    Buildings are much, much larger on the inside than on the outside, and that doesn't even count the secret maze of tunnels behind the clock in the basement.
  • Local Control Rule
    Although the boss monster terrorizing the first city in the game is less powerful than the non-boss monsters that are only casual nuisances to cities later in the game, nobody from the first city ever thinks of hiring a few mercenaries from the later cities to kill the monster.
  • Nostradamus Rule
    All legends are 100% accurate. All rumors are entirely factual. All prophecies will come true, and not just someday but almost immediately.

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