Console RPG Cliches 169 to 192

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  1. Gilligan's Prescription: Any character who has amnesia will be cured before the end of the game. They usually won't like what they find out about themselves, though.
  2. Luke, I Am Your Tedious, Overused Plot Device (Lynx Rule): If there is any chance whatsoever that major villain X could be the male lead's father, then it will turn out that major villain X is the male lead's father.
  3. World of Mild Inconvenience: The devastating plague, noxious gas, planet-obliterating meteor or other large-scale disaster that led to the death of millions will affect your party (and your party's friends and family members) in no way whatsoever, save that a few party members may become lost and you can find them later.
  4. Golden Chocobo Principle: There will be at least one supremely ultimate improvement for your weapon or some way to make your trusted steed capable of going anywhere and doing anything, requiring hours and hours of hard work to acquire. Once you do achieve this, you will use it once, and it will be completely useless for the rest of the game.
  5. Golden Chocobo Corollary: The magic formula for acquiring this supreme upgrade will be only vaguely alluded to in the game itself. Ideally, you're supposed to shell out $19.95 for the strategy guide instead.
  6. Flow of Goods Rule: The quality of goods in the world is dependent upon the shop's distance from the final dungeon. It doesn't matter if the town you start in has a huge thriving economy and is the center of world trade, it will always have the game's worst equipment; and even if that village near the end is isolated and has only three people in it, it will have the game's best equipment.
  7. Master Key Rule: Any and all locked doors that the characters encounter will be unlocked by the end of the game.
  8. "Evil will always triumph, because Good is dumb!" If the villain needs all ten legendary medallions to attain world domination and you have nine of them, everybody in your party still thinks it is necessary to bring the nine to the villain's castle and get the final one, instead of hiding the ones they've already got and spoiling his plans that way. After you foolishly bring the legendary medallions to the villain's hideout, he will kidnap one of your companions (usually the main love interest) and you will trade the world away to rescue your friend.
  9. Dark Helmet's Corollary: After you give up the medallions to save your friend/parent/lover/other miscellaneous party member, don't expect to actually get that person back. Sucker!
  10. It's Not My Department, Says Wernher Von Braun: All space stations, flying cities, floating continents and so forth will without exception either be blown up or crash violently to earth before the end of the game.
  11. The Best-Laid Schemes: The final villain's grand scheme will have involved the deaths of thousands or even millions of innocent people, the clever manipulation of governments, armies, and entire populations, and will have taken anywhere from five to five thousand years to come to fruition. The hero will come up with a method of undoing this plan forever in less than five minutes. (Compare Spanner in the Works)
  12. Pyrrhic Victory: By the time you've gotten it in gear, dealt with your miscellaneous personal crises and are finally ready to go Save the World once and for all, nine-tenths of it will already have been destroyed. Still, you've got to give your all to save the remaining one-tenth.
  13. Poetic Villain Principle (Kefka Rule): All villains will suddenly become poets, philosophers, and/or dramatic actors when a) they first meet the hero, b) they are about to win or their evil plan is finally ready, c) some major event in the game is about to begin, d) right before the final battle, and e) right before they die, when they will frequently be feeling generous enough to reward you with some homespun wisdom about making the most of life while you have it.
  14. Compression of Time: As you approach the final confrontation with the villain, events will become increasingly awkward, contrived and disconnected from one another -- almost as if some cosmic Author was running up against a deadline and had to slap together the ending at the last minute.
  15. Adam Smith's Revenge: By the end of the game you are renowned everywhere as the Legendary Heroes, every surviving government and authority figure has rallied behind you, the fate of the world is obviously hanging in the balance, and out of nowhere random passers-by give you a pat on the back and heartfelt good luck wishes. However, shopkeepers won't even give you a discount, much less free supplies for the final battle with evil.
  16. Adam Smith's Corollary: No matter how thoroughly devastated the continent/planet/universe is, there's always some shopkeeper who survived the end of the world and sits outside the gates of the villain's castle, selling the most powerful equipment in the game, like nothing ever happened.
  17. The Long Arm of the Plot: Any bad guys, no matter how far they run, will always end up in one of two ways by the end of the game: obviously dead, or on your side. There is no in-between.
  18. Apocalypse Any Time Now: The best time to do side quests is while the huge meteor hovers in the sky above the planet, waiting to fall and destroy the world. (Compare Sidetracked by the Gold Saucer)
  19. "So, Andross, you reveal your true form!" You will have to kill the evil villain at least twice at the end of the game. First the villain will look like a person or some creature and be rather easy to kill. Then he will grow to about 50 times the hero's size and be much harder to kill.
  20. In Your Face, Jesus!: Even if you manage to deal with him that time, you're not done -- the villain will then transform into his final form, which is always an angelic winged figure with background music remixed for ecstatic chorus and pipe organ.
  21. The Moral Of The Story (Ghaleon Rule): Every problem in the universe can be solved by finding the right long-haired prettyboy and beating the crap out of him.
  22. Weapon Rule: There's always a hidden creature who is much harder to defeat than even the ultimate bad guy's final, world-annihilating form. It's lucky for all concerned that this hidden creature prefers to stay hidden rather than trying to take over the world himself, because he'd probably win. As a corollary, whatever reward you get for killing the hidden creature is basically worthless because by the time you're powerful enough to defeat him, you don't need it any more.
  23. The Ultimate Rule: Anything called "Ultima (whatever)" or "Ultimate (whatever)" isn't. There's always at least one thing somewhere in the world which is even more.
  24. Know Your Audience (Vyse Rule): Every woman in the game will find the male lead incredibly attractive. (See also Most Gamers Are Male)

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