Devil Survivor

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Peaceful days died. Let's survive.

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor (the Japanese title uses Persona's Megami Ibunroku overtitle instead of SMT) is a Strategy RPG game by Atlus, released in 2009.

Devil Survivor entails the story of three Ordinary High School Students: an eleventh grader (the protagonist) and his friends, everygirl Yuzu Tanikawa and computer geek Atsuro Kihara. One summer day, the protagonist's cousin Naoya calls them over to his place and gives them three popular hand-held computers (Communication Players, or COMPs) with his own custom firmware installed. Tinkering with the firmware, Atsuro unlocks a hidden Demon Summoning Program that releases demons right in front of the three startled friends.

Just when they are recovering from this shock, their COMPs receive emails that seemingly predict the future. Sure enough, the events predicted in the "Laplace Mail" come true and demons are unleashed upon Tokyo, causing the government to impose an immediate military lockdown on the entire Yamanote Circle region of the city.

The Protagonist and his friends must now use their custom COMPs to survive the lockdown between the increasingly-panicked citizens, the invading demonic armies and those who would seek to use the power of the COMPs for their own ends. In addition to the COMP's ability to summon and control demons, our heroes have two main tools to help them survive: the Laplace Mail, which comes every morning and predicts disasters that will occur that day, and the Death Clock (not to be confused with Dethklok,) which displays how many days a person has left to live. Unfortunately, according to the Death Clock it seems that a terrible incident will take place on the seventh day of the lockdown, killing everyone within the Yamanote Circle... if the various dangers within the Yamanote Circle don't kill them first.

Devil Survivor is an interesting fusion of the old with the new. The basic scenario and first-person battle system is very similar to that of Shin Megami Tensei I but with the modern style and character-driven gameplay of Persona 3 and Persona 4. Devil Survivor is also the most player-friendly Shin Megami Tensei game yet: players can not only see a list of the demons that they can fuse and how to fuse them, but they can choose exactly what skills they inherit and even teach them new abilities. Don't take this to mean that Atlus is making the game any easier, because they're not.

An Updated Rerelease on the 3DS, Devil Survivor Overclocked, was released in August 23. The port features more demons (approximately 150), full voice acting, the ability to select difficulty, and "8th Day" Playable Epilogues for certain endings.

A sequel has been released for the original DS, and it too will involve something predicting the events of the day, a 7-day time limit and Multiple Endings.

Artistic qualities seem familiar to you? The character design is done by none other than Suzuhito Yasuda!

A list of potential survivors can be found here.

See also Mirai Nikki for a similar concept of "Laplace Mail". Compare and contrast The World Ends With You, which also features a seven-day storyline in Shibuya.


Tropes used in Devil Survivor include:
  • Adaptive Ability: Kudlak's ability, and the justification as to why the second fight against him is such a Scrappy Level. And if you kill him during the first fight, he ends up being even stronger the next fight. Naturally, once you can fuse him on your own, he has no such magical abilities.
  • Adults Are Useless: Well, most of them, given how the ones who aren't Demon Tamers are just running away and how some of them are plain dangerous for not thinking right about their situation. The Three Amigos will always end up saving adults. Makes one wonder why they bothered to have kid NPCs in the first place.
  • Affably Evil: Kudlak is curiously cheery and prone to making strange, stream-of-conscious-esque comments.
    • Lampshaded by Kresnik.

Kresnik: Does his chatter ever cease...?

  • After Combat Recovery
  • Alien Sky: As time goes on, the sky becomes more and more red. This is a very bad thing.
  • Anti-Grinding: The game imposes a penalty on experience points gained from lower-level enemies, usually making grinding any higher than five levels above the highest-leveled enemy not worth your time. This penalty is removed in a New Game+.
    • Also, as demons get further from their starting level, they start requiring rather ridiculous amounts of XP to level up. This and the above mechanic both serve to encourage the use of Mega Ten's trademark demon fusion system.
  • Anyone Can Die: And will if the main characters don't intervene.
  • Arbitrary Headcount Limit: Did you get a bunch of new allies for the final day? Good for you! You get to pick four of them. (Actually three, since your protagonist is locked into your first party slot.) Especially egregious given that allies who don't get sent into battle will still pop up in cutscenes and talk as though they've been fighting with you the entire time.
  • Auction of Evil: Arguably the Devil Auction, which is basically, well, an eBay for monstrously powerful demons to sell themselves.
    • However, Dark Is Not Evil comes into play as the auction is effectively a neutral in terms of what it is. Those who acquire said demons through the auction may/may not be another story.
  • Awesome but Impractical: The Auto-Skill Magic Yin coupled with an Awakening from a Deity demon makes the spell Megidolaon absurdly powerful...at 150 mp a pop. The hilarious thing is that you can theoretically one shot many bosses with this technique, as long as you have the mana to do so. Sadly, the Final Boss and Bonus Boss are highly resistant to such tactics.
    • Probably because the creators anticipated that people would try such tactics against them.
    • Not that impractical if your MC has max MA (400+ MP) and you couple the skill with Drain (which, quite obviously, drains enemies' HP and MP while recovering yours), which is also ridiculously powerful with such high MA.
    • Victory Cry on demons is this as well, since you have to fuse Metatron off into a Mitama every time.
      • In Overclocked Victory Cry is less of a hassle to give to your demons since the demon compendium lets you register demons and summon them again with their skills, stats, and levels intact. The only problem is the price of summoning the demons.
  • Badass Adorable: Most Fanart that shows the MC in the cloak from the Naoya ending have him far too young to pull off the badass factor the cloak would otherwise grant (getting his powers from a Nintendo DS doesn't help either). Given what you have to do to get the ending however, he is not someone you want to mess with.
  • Badass Boast: The narration during the opening sequence. Although never stated, it is fairly obvious that it is God's, or possibly Metatron's (as he gives the end sequence for Naoya and Amane's ends, possibly others.
  • Barrier Maiden - The four Devas, whose very existence is what keeps demons from entering the human world. One was already defeated by Jezebel!Amane, allowing for demons to be summoned easily; in every route bar Yuzu's, you have to defeat the others to reach Babel (and thus risk causing Hell on Earth if you screw up).
    • In Yuzu's 8th Day, Take-Mikazuchi, the demon Gin made a contract with, can become Jikoku's (the Deva Jezebel!Amane defeated) replacement as Guardian of the East. It opens up an Escort Mission to protect Gin until the ritual to restore the Tokyo Barrier is complete, so, even if not for long, Gin himself kind-of becomes one too.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For - If you go along with Yuzu's wishes to escape the blockade and succeed, you quickly learn it was a very bad idea...
  • Biblical Bad Guy - Naoya is Cain.
    • Played straight with basically every boss from Christian mythology (Belial, Jezebel, Belzaboul/Beelzebub, Lucifer) Also played with in that God himself is responsible for ordering the lockdown, and may become your enemy depending on the route you choose.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Thanks to the Laplace Mail, you can pull this off several times. Midori is also addicted to the idea of being a Big Damn Hero, and teaches those same values to Black Frost. And if you bail him out with a Big Damn Heroes moment, he returns the favor later on.
    • Naoya as well, who shows up in the final battle of Amane's route to set up a barrier to prevent the boss from resurrecting and gaining power.
  • Big Bad: Due to the multiple endings, this can actually vary.
  • Bittersweet Ending: None of the endings are 100% positive, but Gin's ending is the one that comes the closest to being unambiguously happy.
    • And even this ending comes with a disclaimer from Heaven courtesy of Metatron you still have the power of Bel, and they WILL kill you if you ever turn evil and use it, otherwise, you are congratulated for your willingness to forsake said power.
  • Blind Idiot Translation: Some of the text (particularly for abilities and battle) aren't translated right in the original DS version:
    • The description for Battle Aura says it blocks damage that's "> 50", instead of "< 50" damage like it actually does.
    • Force skills descriptions read: "Effect:STONE", but it doesn't turn the enemy into stone, it insta-kills an opponent who is already stone.
    • The XP boost skill says you gain 75% exp with it equipped, which would technically mean you'd be missing out on exp.
    • Overclocked corrects Battle Aura's wrong description, but brings a new one the table: Cursed Dance's description indicates it does damage equal to "caster's HP/4", but it actually does damage equal to "target's (current) HP/4". So it actually does less damage the more damaged your enemy is, which makes sense considering the only other offensive Mystic spell is Judgement, which reduces the target's current HP by half.
  • Bolt of Divine Retribution: Nonstandard Game Over that wipes all life within the Yamanote Loop.
  • Bonus Boss: Lucifer along with Ghost Q and Sage of Time in the original. Yomotsu Ikusa and Nebiros join them in Overclocked.
  • Break the Cutie: Midori goes through this during the Fourth Day, when she is attacked by a group of people she had been trying to save for being a demon tamer, and Keisuke attempts to respond to their actions with lethal force, both of which shake her sense of justice to the core.
    • Yuzu experiences this throughout the entire game, until, by the last days, she's so desperate for everything to just stop that she argues that you should all just escape despite knowing the consequences by that point.
  • Broken Aesop: As the title states, the main theme of the game is survival, and yet taking the path that many would consider having the best chance for survival (namely, choosing to run from impossible odds rather than throwing your life away for a seemingly hopeless cause) nets you the worst ending...although since this is a SMT game, the aesop still makes sense in a twisted way when you realize survival means sticking around until the situation is resolved, which actually works.
    • Yuzu's 8th Day has a very explicit focus on how the decision to run away had several consequences that we had been warned about many times but chose to ignore by running away. Then it changes its focus to another Aesop that is what powers the Earn Your Happy Ending of the full route: taking responsiblity for one's actions.
  • Broken Bird: Haru. Unfortunately, suicidal depression is the least of her problems...
  • Boss Rush: The Messiah/Law Ending and Overlord/Chaos Ending both have the party facing off with ALL the previous Bels. Even the one you defeated moments earlier. And the one that can only be harmed by being punched with a cell-phone strap (luckily you keep it handy and need to dispatch the party member who has it, but sucks for you if he's dead by now).
    • Fortunately, Jezebel doesn't have her lava lake on her anymore, which alleviates the sub-battle with her somewhat.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Let's all form an angry mob and go after people who can summon demons! That's certainly a smart idea.
    • Idiot Ball: And it happens repeated times, until the point where pretty much everybody trapped in the Yamanote Circle has a COMP and demons of their own and just start attacking each other regardless of reason.
  • But Thou Must! - Dialogue Trees aside, the game will force several events on you each day. And no, you can't "accidentally" miss those.
    • Some dialogue choices as well. After you choose a path at the end of Day 6, no matter how many times you say "Do I have to?" or "No way!", you continue onwards.
    • Rule of thumb: If it's a battle, advances time, and it's not a Free Battle, 99% of the time it's required to advance the plot.
  • Cain and Abel: With Naoya and the protagonist, even though they're cousins, but it's subverted in that Naoya doesn't actually want to kill the protagonist unless you take a certain route. And then it turns out that it's actually quite literal, with Naoya being Cain incarnate and the protagonist having the essence of Abel.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Amane does this to her father, the founder of the Shomonkai, before the Belberith fight in her route.
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: The Main Character's destiny seems to follow him at every corner but you can subvert it by running away, however, this nets you the worst ending in the game.
  • Candle Jack: The name of 2 star Pyro Jacks at auct
  • Cast from Hit Points: Physical Skills.
    • Divine demons, like Angels, can also recharge the MP of the squad they're part of by sacrificing their own Health via Blood Wine... handy for those Mages.
  • Censor Shadow: Astaroth is depicted as a nude man riding a giant snake; there is a shadow concealing his crotch.
  • The Chick: Yuzu.
    • Who, as long as you don't shoot for her ending, upgrades to Badass Damsel.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome - Like it or not, you're going to end up saving at least dozens of civilians several times a day, to the point where some people actually realise it's you when you arrive to help them.
  • Closed Circle: The Yamanote Loop is forcibly cut off from the rest of Japan, lest demons or demon-users get out.
  • The Complainer Is Always Wrong: Yuzu will always say that you should all run away and escape the quarantine area. This is the exact opposite of what you should do. Unless, of course, you want the worst ending in the game.
    • And/or the ability to have Remiel in your ranks. Which is needed to fuse Metatron. And also it is the easier route by far to end and get the New Game+ benefits. ...So even with being the Bad Ending, it is still the best as first ending...
    • Not the bad ending anymore thanks to Overclocked's 8th Day scenario of the route, in which you atone for the consequences wrought by your breaking through the lockdown. Viewed in full, the Yuzu route plays out more like a botched attempt at a Earn Your Happy Ending with extremely unexpected consequences, then goes on to a real Earn Your Happy Ending.
  • Console Cameo: The COMPs look exactly like Nintendo DS's. In Overclocked they get upgraded to the 3DS.
  • Cosplay Otaku Girl: Midori, who got caught in the lockdown wearing a cosplay outfit. Her imagination goes off the gauge once she gains a COMP.
  • Council of Angels: The primary function of angels in this game, in fact it seems they're the ones in charge of the lockdown, not God. Though the fact that humanity has the chance to redeem itself at all was His idea.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Several, although you can prevent some of them. You can't keep the crooked cops from executing a helpless man before your eyes, however. Among others.
  • Cute Little Fangs: Izuna, Midori.
    • Fan art often portrays the Main Character with one.
  • Curtains Match the Window: Most of the cast. One notable exception is Naoya.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Possibly the demons the characters can summon. Notably Black Frost ("Jaaku Frost" or "Evil Frost" in Japan).
  • Deconstruction: One of the main levels on which the game works is as an absolutely horrific deconstruction of the entire concept of Mons (far beyond even what other titles in the SMT franchise do; we're talking Narutaru levels of disturbing) in that it demonstrates exactly how people running around with monsters capable of lethal force in an urban setting would actually work.
    • This is most obvious in the event where Kaido and Keisuke confront one another, which is almost narmy in how it's set up exactly like some twisted demonic Pokémon battle (facing each other across a street with the two "mons" in between, shouting commands, etc)... and then, unless you've played your cards exactly right, one side loses and the other's demon graphically murders the opponent at its master's urging. Enjoy your Pikachus now, kids!
    • Depending on dialogue choices, several characters can also remark on the fact that even without the lockdown making law and order worse, law enforcement would basically be impossible against demon tamers; how is a cop supposed to face down someone who can summon an Eldritch Abomination at will? And when the police get their own demon summoning abilities, many of them can't resist the urge to use it for personal gain.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: The main way to get new demons.
    • Though you don't get the demons you beat; slaying new demons just makes them start appearing on dBay, or in the case of more powerful demons, allows you to fuse other demons to create them.
    • Most notable with Kresnik and Kudlak, ferocious rivals, which both become available for you to fuse and summon should you succeed in a certain mission.
      • Actually, Any demons that YOU summon can be recruited by beating them. However, the only time that you get to summon your own demons is at the start of the game, for the tutorial level. (This happens to several other characters along the way the first time they get their own COMP)
  • Defector From Decadence: Amane chooses to leave the Shomonkai cult when Remiel shows her a way to end God's ordeal with less suffering than summoning Belberith.
  • Demonic Possession: Mari's quest to defeat the bloodless murderer leads her to willing possession. Also, you find out that Amane is possessed twice over, by a demon and an angel.
  • Demonic Spider: Basilisks, which are custom tailored to be annoying as hell and deadly, to boot. To wit—they have repeated ways of turning you to stone (stoned enemies are have a chance of being instantly killed when hit by physical attacks -- the computer having better luck than you, of course), attack from a distance (so you just have to sit there and take the hits), and tend to get grouped in with just about every enemy squad during the mid-game.
    • They are much more evil when paired with Cait Sith demons, like during the Beldr fight. They all have party-hitting force elemental spells (Mazan). Stoned demons and tamers can be shattered and killed instantly by both physical and force elemental attacks. And Beldr has Stone+ ability that allows him to randomly petrify enemies hit by his physical attack. Fun times.
    • Ariochs become this in Overclcoked, mostly due to there being a lot more of them than in the original. They're often paired with Catoblepas demons, allowing their pitiful movement range to be significantly buffed with Devil Speed, and because they're Vile demons, they can spam the powerful Deathbound with impunity. It is generally possible to use fire attacks For Massive Damage, but good luck getting a shot off before Deathbound wipes out a good chunk of your team.
  • Dialogue Tree: Every time the Silent Protagonist gets to say anything, it's this.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: The Main Character defeating Beldr, who was completely invincible to everything but the devil's fuge (i.e., a cellphone strap with faux-mistletoe leaves on it.) Interestingly, this occurs on Day 3.
    • Not to mention the Bonus Boss, Lucifer.
    • During Naoya's 8th Day, you get to punch out Metatron, the one known as the 'lesser YHVH.'
  • Difficulty Spike: Decide to avoid playing through free battles and regularly upgrade your demons, and the game will turn into this. This is an Atlus game.
  • Dissonant Serenity - The Laplace Mails you receive predict murders, explosions, mass slaughters etc. in an almost cheerful manner, even as they start to get more and more glitched out. H?v3 a n1????cE D Ea T?!
  • Doppelganger Attack: Loki. The real one has a shadow.
  • The Dragon - Belzaboul to Lucifer.
    • He's also Belberith's dragon (as is Jezebel), but only because Lucifer said so. Also, all the Bels are arguably this in the final fight with Babel. Another arguable dragon would be the entire Shomonkai to "His Highness", Belberith.
  • Dronejam - You can walk through friendly characters, but not enemies. Same applies to enemies; in fact, this is how you keep Kudlak from escaping battle (unless you have a demon with Bind or Constrict) on Day 5.
  • Dual Boss - Two of the Devas are fought this way.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending - The only way to Screw Destiny without breaking anything is to actively fight it; simply running away makes things even worse as you learn first-hand in Yuzu's ending.
    • Even Yuzu's ending becomes happy in Overclocked, where, upon being faced with this horrific world, the characters decide to atone, and fight anyway...turning it into a happy ending
  • The End - or Is It?: In The Stinger for Gin's ending, Metatron compliments you on your accomplishments, but warns that you still hold the power of Bel within you, and any misuse of that power will result in "severe consequences".
  • Escort Mission: Quite a few. These are not well loved by the fans.
    • Even with Wilders and Avatar Demons, they can be crazy even with a plan, and often are the reason why "Quick Save" exists in the first place.
    • Made worse by the fact that for a good two days, there is no decent Wilder to use. They're either around level 10 (Waira), have a crippling weakness to magic and ice (Garm), and the next one you get is at level 26 (Afanc). Yes.
      • Gin's in Yuzu's 8th Day is rather hectic. It's not because the NPC in question can't defend themselves; they can, they thing is they're stationary and will literally NEVER get a turn until Gin finishes the ritual to restore the Tokyo Barrier. No, the reason it's hectic is because of the seemingly never-ending horde of demons trying to get them.
  • Expy: The Main Character suspiciously looks like someone from a previous MegaTen game.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep" - The Shomonkai's leader. His name is only mentioned in a small number of optional events; the game, and all the characters, call him "Founder".
    • For the curious, it's Kuzuryu. (And that is only his last name, shared with Amane, his daughter.)
      • Better used in Yuzu's 8th day, where his name is used quite a bit, in non-optional events.
    • And then there's Gin, whose real name is Eiji. It's also the name of his bar, but everyone calls him Gin.
  • Fake Difficulty: The first battle with Naoya has you up against demons that would be reasonably easy to beat at that point in the game. However, Naoya makes you beat all six demons in three turns...and they don't move...and they're really spread out. Granted, it's not required to beat all six; failing to do so will just result in a very unentertained Naoya leaving and telling you the info he was going to tell you via e-mail later on, and the battle is mediated by the fact that it only counts the protagonist's turns; the other characters can move as much as they want and it won't count towards the three.
  • Fan Nickname: DeSu for the game itself, dBay for the devil auctioning.
  • Five-Man Band: A bit different depending on your choice of ending, but the team you have for most of the game(provided nobody dies) fits excellently, with only minor alteration.
  • Flunky Boss: Beldr's battle. Many people have trouble with those goddamn Cait Siths and their goddamn Vidofnir buddies with Petra Eyes and their goddamn Mazan spell that will kill anyone with petrification. Oh, and don't forget the goddamn healing capabilities that they often use on Beldr if you don't kill them. Did we mention the boss just turns around and resurrects them at full health and mana if you do kill them?
    • Of course, the trick is that he can only resurrect completely defeated squads, meaning if you kill off everything but the leader, you can safely ignore the manaless Cait Siths and Pyro Jacks, since they can't heal.
  • Foil: Midori and Keisuke seem to be this for each other. While both seem to be attracted to the idea of justice, Midori is a bit too optimistic about it, while Keisuke... is a little more cynical. Okay, really cynical.
    • This could also be reflected by their movesets. When Keisuke first appears as an NPC, his moves are Ice Dance, Bufu and Dia. And he keeps these moves (though upgrading Bufu to Mabufu and Dia to Media) when you battle against him. When Midori first appears as an NPC that can fight, her moves are Fire Dance, Maragi and Media. Opposites attract?
    • Amane and Naoya could also be foils for each other; Amane believes in God, but Naoya wants to kill Him. Amane wants to follow the angels' wishes and make the MC a Messiah so that he can be God's judge (though she will also join you in Haru's route) and Naoya wants to make the MC an Overlord so he can rebel against God. Hell, the Messiah cape and Overlord cape are white and black respectively.
  • For the Evulz: The only reason Loki seems to bother showing up is to send Beldr back to Hel. Of course, it was necessary to save the world...doesn't change the fact that he was totally lul'ing about it the entire time.
    • He also shows up in some of the endings, giving a special Hannibal Lecture in Yuzu's
    • There's also Lucifer, who explains that he has no interest in winning the Throne of Bel and lent Belzaboul to Belberith because, basically, he wanted to see what would happen. Could be considered For Teh Lulz.
  • Freak-Out: Keisuke goes through one when he realizes that most of the normal people in the Loop hate the demon tamers who try to help them, and this drives him to protect tamers from them, Knight Templar style.
  • Fusion Dance: As with virtually every other SMT title, you can fuse demons to create new ones, but this time there are a number of Anti-Frustration Features. First off, you can use a search function that explicitly tells you all possible demons you can create and how to create them, and secondly, you can finally pick and choose which abilities are inherited instead of having to let the RNG decide.
  • Game Breaking Bug: There's an AI glitch that allows enemy teams to take advantage of some abilities they don't have when attacking a team that does. Double Up (attack twice in one turn) is the primary offender. It's not game breaking per se, but it's one of the more annoying ways the game can send you on a one-way trip to Game Over.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Each time you defeat one of the contenders for the Throne of Bel, the game will give you a message stating your main character has absorbed their power. Alas, you only gain small benefits from this (for example, Beldr gives you +3 to speed), not the overpowered special abilities of the boss. Sorry, I know you were looking forward to trying out Beldr's invulnerability.
  • Gas Leak Coverup: Played totally straight, and swallowed by the protagonists about as well as an Undead Horse Trope could be.
  • Get Back Here Boss: Kudlak. The guy has a fairy decent move range on a relatively small map, and he'll make a beeline for escape panels. It gets to the point where the only methods of keeping him still are petrification, or utilizing Dronejam to forcibly bar his way, no easy feat. It's not mandatory to beat him, but if he escapes you'll miss out on two fusions and a party member.
  • Genre Savvy: As Atsuro puts it at the end of Day 1, "It's like those games. Start the player off easy, and then..."
  • Glass Cannon: Any demon with a high attack stat and significantly low magic stat (as it covers magic resistance) qualifies. The inverse holds true for demons with high magic but low vitality, which is what factors in physical defense. Find a way to subvert that weakness, and...
    • Awesome but Impractical Part 2: Short of mucking with stat gains through Mitama fusions, this covers roughly fifty percent of the demons available in the game. Another 40 percent are the Jack of All Stats, and the remaining ten actually see tactical use throughout the game.
    • There's a couple of demon races with a racial ability that lets you target distant units (though they also slow down your party by quite a bit), effectively turning you into artillery. And, like artillery, they have numerous weaknesses and no real defense against close-range attackers.
  • God Is Evil: Surprisingly subverted, contrary to expectations for the franchise. At first you'll probably think God is behind everything given how the Shomonkai act mysteriously and the COMPs seem to come from them... but then you find out they're worshipping a demon, not God, that it's the equivalent of a Corrupt Corporate Executive handing out the COMPs, and to top it all off, you find out that an archangel hitched a ride in their Maiden's mind in order to save her and to help you out, on orders from the Big Man Himself, who actually doesn't want to see humanity get hurt and will only resort to extreme measures if the demons gain a permanent foothold on the Earth. You proceed to get some help from the Big Man on most of the routes where you don't choose blatantly selfish/evil options.
    • There's some speculation that this "softening" on the position of a One God is due to the ever-increasing popularity of the series in the West - since most Western players are fairly chill with God, it makes more sense for Him to not be a dickbag all the time.
    • It may be worth mentioning that Uriel, Raphael, Michael, and Gabriel - the seraphs who typically represent a "hardline" God - are noticeably absent.
    • Overclocked reveals that Cain was set up by God to be the first murderer and Abel to be a martyr. Even then he is far more morally ambiguous than in past games. The Four Seraphs that represent a "hardline" God were also nearly summoned by Metatron in the Overlord 8th Day as well.
  • Government Conspiracy: Why did they blockade the city? And everybody's Death Clock has the same low number...something's not gonna happen to annihilate everything in the Yamanote loop, will it...?
  • Good Is Dumb: When someone joins, he/she doesn't bring the demons he/she used in the proceeding battles. Characters do minimal damage when they are your CPU allies (except when attacking an enemy with a skill you set to crack, then they kill it fairly well), but are able to one shot groups of monsters consistently when you are racing to obtain the highest kill count or need to keep them from escaping.
    • Surprisingly, Izuna and her superior officer can actually seal their demon contract on their own without issues... provided you stop every other demon from getting close to them (and kindly inform them of the information they need).
    • It's either an egregious case, or else Fridge Brilliance, with Naoya in Atsuro's route. When you fight him in the boss battle, he has high-leveled (at least at that point in time) demons, one of which you wouldn't even be able to get unless you've subjected yourself to serious level-grinding or are playing in New Game+. Plus, he has a Speed of 75 (note that Speed determines who moves first on the map, unlike Agility which is an actual stat), allowing him to immediately move halfway across the map, which just leads to a potentially long and drawn-out battle. And when you get him as an NPC in the final battle? He has no demons with him, has 3 movement and a Speed of 50. Thankfully, he won't go down easily since comes with Anti-All, but still, he's clearly not exerting himself to help you out.
  • Grandfather Clause: Shiva is still fused with his classic components in a game otherwise lacking in special fusions like that.
  • Grey and Gray Morality: The four successful endings, as usual for a Mega Ten game, all have their pros and cons. Yuzu's ending is more Black, but it's also not portrayed as the protagonist's agenda but as an unforeseen consequence of it. At least in Overclocked, you're given a chance to undo the damage you caused with your flight.
  • Guide Dang It: Have fun getting some of the endings without a guide!
    • The trickiest part of unlocking any route except Yuzu's, is making sure to save Haru on Day 5.
      • Checking the map for her events can make it slightly easier to do. Slightly. Still may need a notebook to piece all the stuff together
        • Or you could Go for Atsuro's ending which doesn't require Haru to be alive.
    • The fusions that need to be unlocked can be somewhat tricky. Unlike the other fusions, they don't show up unless you already have the component demons needed to create them. This makes Metatron a tricky one since Remiel, an unlockable fusion on a different route is needed to fuse it.
      • The irony? It isn't too hard to get that specific ending (on accident, no less) if you prevent all the deaths that can be prevented. Preventing the Keisuke-Kaido showdown is probably the hardest part of this, as you have to have done a specific conversation on an earlier date to be able to do it.
        • For the record, Gin's death CAN be prevented at a late point in the game (after the Keisuke-Kaido ordeal), but even if you don't save him you can still get the specific ending required for this fairly easy.
  • Hero Antagonist: ...where do we start? Even ignoring Naoya's route, the big example on all routes (excepting the obvious) are the Devas, who are doing their jobs to keep Tokyo safe, and who are well aware that you're doing what you have to do, but they're still going to go down fighting.
    • Finally Averted on Yuzu's 8th Day, the one route where you never fought them. You can, in fact, assist the Devas in their plan to restore Tokyo's barrier and prevent demons from running wild via hayware COMPs.
  • Hilarity Ensues: Black Frost's debut scene. First, a human punches a Jack Frost in the face and Moh Shuvuu carries the hapless demon away. Then Black Frost appears, calling himself a Warrior of Love and Rage (but you can call him Frosty).
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: As time wears on in the locked-down loop, people start to snap.
  • I Am Who?: The Main Character is a reincarnation of Abel and the only human qualified to become the King of Bel.
    • Although according to Amane, there were many other reincarnations of Abel, and he qualifies himself in-game by defeating Beldr.
  • I Just Want to Be Normal: Yuzu didn't ask to be dragged into this chaos. And she reminds you of this at very opportunity. (Not that this isn't Justified, mind you...)
  • Immune to Bullets: Interestingly, the guns the military uses aren't totally ineffective against demons, but only do any more damage than standard attacks when used on people, making their use when on your side highly questionable.
  • Infant Immortality - Brutally averted. No matter what you do, Honda's son is doomed.
  • Intrepid Reporter - Shoji. Her mentor was this as well before he went missing while investigating Japan's PSE laws. For those who don't know, PSE law applies to electrical devices. The COMPs are electrical. The SDF doesn't plan to lift the lockdown. Everyone's going to die at the same time. See where this is going?
  • Justice Will Prevail: Central to Midori's Black and White Morality. Also, Keisuke takes a decidedly darker bent on this concept...
  • Knight Templar: Keisuke becomes one during the fourth and fifth days, although you can talk him out of it.
    • True to Mega Ten tradition, the angels also fall under this.
    • In Amane's 8th day, Okuninushi would rather destroy Japan himself than allow it to be controlled by a foreign power (in this case, the Angels).
  • Large Ham:
    • Beldr. GroOOOOOOOOOOOOarrRR!
    • Arguably Naoya's later Rage Against the Heavens-fueled rants qualify him.
    • The Shomonkai leader becomes this in Overclocked.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Midori when she first gets her COMP to the point that it takes meeting an invincible demon lord to make her consider retreating... and even after that, she doesn't actually give up these ways until her mentor goes Knight Templar and her life is threatened by the yakuza.
    • Black Frost, her unwitting protege, when you encounter him fighting hostile demon tamers on day 6. Good luck trying to save him while he spams his HP-lowering skill and tries to take on opponents who outnumber him three-to-one.
  • Light Is Not Good: Once again, angels show up to be condescending Jerkasses in a Mega Ten game. Not to mention Belberith, the demon lord of light. Surprisingly though, God Himself comes off as a pretty nice guy, just one surrounded by subordinates who take the Lawful part of His Lawful Goodness a bit too far.
  • Lighter and Softer: One of the few games in the series where God is actually put in a somewhat positive light for a change.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Kinda. While physical-based characters can match and exceed magic users in damage, the Skill Crack system effectively prohibits having more than one in the party, whereas there are fewer limitations on magic users. They also suffer from being effectively locked into one element, plus Standard Status Effects games at your option (actually a good idea for anyone equipped with Weak Kill). However, this is inverted at late game. Skills unlocked at late game portion will turn your physical-based characters into the boss killers. At late game your physical teams should be capable of one rounding bosses when magical-based teams can only manage to chip bosses HP little by little.
    • What's more, many of the physical skills inflict damage based on how much HP you have, while the skills themselves require HP to use. Meaning the skills actually get less useful the more you use them in a battle (although Health Saver tempers this problem). Mage-type characters, of course, do not suffer from this problem. You can see why magic is so favored in this game.
      • Mages suffer from a different problem. HP can be quickly recovered through the Dia family, Charm, Affection, etc. MP is not so easily restored, so if you aren't careful about which spells you cast where (and remember that Almighty doesn't have any weaknesses to go after, meaning it can't active Extra Turn)...
        • Averted Hard later in the game when (especially in OC where two physical strikers are a possible given the rise of Pierce+) the Pierce/Phy Amp/Phys Reflect/Multistrike(OC)/Deathbound(DS) combo is unlocked. Atsuro simply murders entire teams given Multistrike's(Death Bound to a lesser extent, though it does more damage consistently to a single target) properties, to elaborate Pierce makes phys do full damage against all but reflect, phys amp attaches a 1.5 modifier, and multistrike allows a physical attacker to attack each member of the opposing team 2-7 times without being penalized due to health levels, toss in Bliztkrieg for an additional modifier or even dual shadow+ and phys drain, you're looking at a character that can one round entire teams for free, whereas most mages, even Almighty spell equipped ones, are generally much slower and relegated to murdering whatever has Phys Reflect, and even then are only partially effective given the rise of Holy Strike (Almighty damage running off STR).
  • Louis Cypher: Kind of. The "unnamed" gigolo is actually Loki.
    • Since this is a MegaTen game, it goes without saying that the real deal is present too, as a Bonus Boss you can fuse for your own use upon defeat.
  • Luck-Based Mission - You know the last fight is rigged when every enemy team is equipped with Diarahan and Samarecarm, there's not one but two powerful enemies with a full-field, uncrackable skill that drains your MP, and after a couple of turns two of the last people you'd expect to show up arrive with insanely strong demons, and are all equipped with outrageously broken skills that, again, are uncrackable.
    • And that's the final battle of the easiest route.
  • Lying Creator: Overclocked was billed as having an 8th day for each path. Now the game is out, and how many of the 6 endings got an epilogue? Three (Actually, it's technically four as Kaido shares Naoya's 8th day). Granted, Gin's and Atsuro's endings can be excused due to the fact that they involve banishing both demons and angels one way or another,
  • Made of Iron - Handwaved using a computer program. The COMPs come with a "harmonizer" program which, without getting technical, allows the user to fight on equal terms with demons.
    • It even manages the Hand Wave why the normal citizens in the Escort Mission can survive an attack from demons. The harmonizer program affects all humans within its range.
  • Magnetic Hero: The hero can develop into this, especially on certain paths; it's possible to end up with several more human allies than you have team slots. Some potential recruits, mind you, are better at resisting his pull than others.
    • Lampshaded by Kaido during one conversation.

Kaido: You seem kinda like a player. No offense.

  • Magitek and/or Magic From Technology - Demon summoning and casting of magic spells is handled through portable electronic devices, which automate the rituals involved (somehow) and draw on the willpower of the human race through the Internet itself.
  • Matrix Raining Code - Naoya's haori, though the numbers don't actually move.
  • Meaningful Name - The Laplace Mail, named after Laplace's demon. Doubles as a Shown Their Work when you realize that the later degradation of said mails is literally the universe starting to fall apart on itself from the battle of angels and demons, along with your party screwing destiny. Thus, it's no surprise that the mails stop right before The End of the World as We Know It.
  • Mega Manning: Skill Crack.
  • Meganekko: Midori.
  • Mega Neko: One of the demons, the Cait Sith, is actually a human-sized cat wearing boots and brandishing a Three Musketeers-esque sword, highly reminiscent of Puss in Boots.
    • Well, we don't really know for sure if it's huge or just a regular-sized cat. There are suggestions that they're fairly sizable, though.
    • The absolute best part? When she's an NPC, Midori uses these demons exclusively because they're "cute". That's right, the Meganekko is followed around by Mega Neko. One almost suspects this can't be coincidence.
  • Melee a Trois - The fight between demons and angels on Day 6 can be turned into this. In fact, this may well be the best way to handle the situation if you wish to avoid an early bad end.
    • Becomes more like a "Melee a Quatre" once the human fugitives try to sneak past the Summoners, Angels and Demons altogether while they battle, and have to be stopped and beaten
  • Mons: The demons, of course. Many of the common tropes associated with other Mons games are brutally Deconstructed, though, as detailed above.
  • Multiple Endings: Though the endings play out somewhat differently from the mainline Shin Megami Tensei games, in keeping with the slightly less cynical nature of the game. The Kingdom of Saints directly corresponds to the classic Law, but the Social Darwinist Chaos from the main games is represented by the Bad Ending, the King of Demons ending plays like Nocturne's True Demon ending, and the Neutral endings are unique to Devil Survivor.
    • They can be reasonably sorted like this -
      • Bad Ending Yuzu
      • Law Ending Amane
      • Neutral Ending #1 Atsuro
      • Neutral Ending #2 Gin
      • Chaos Ending Naoya
    • And in Overclocked, three scenarios are given 8th days that make them into the classic Law/Neutrality/Chaos trefoil. Amane for Law, Yuzu for Neutrality, Naoya for Chaos.
      • Further split given that there are two possible paths for Naoya's 8th day, basically letting you choose whether you want to be Chaotic Good or a Complete Monster.
  • Mythology Gag: Depending on the scenes you unlock, the characters will wonder if they can try talking to demons, a major gameplay element in most Shin Megami Tensei games.
    • The names of the competing bidders in the Demon Auction are characters from previous Shin Megami Tensei games. Surprisingly, a lot of the names come from Soul Hackers, which wasn't even localised! In addition, the Occult level users are all previous Heroes/Protagonists.
    • Another random conversation with Atsuro has him wonder what would happen if humans were used in fusion. Shin Megami Tensei I allows you to recruit and fuse various humans from the Gaian and Messiah cults as though they were demons and the Chaos Hero fuses himself to a demon as a plot event.
    • Americans wouldn't get it because we never got the game officially, but a lot of Japanese players probably did a spit-take when Amane fully introduced herself as Amane Kuzuryu. Man, you want a hint that a character will be important later on...
    • While it may be unintentional but this is the second time a Megaten ever elaborated on how the Demon Summoning Program works by using programming code to replicate a summoning ritual. The other title that used this explanation was Digital Devil Story, from nearly 20 years ago!
  • New Game+ Depends on what ending you get. Some give the MC an extra panel to move in missions and/or extra speed. All endings remove the Fusion Level Limit, remove the XP penalty for killing weaker foes, and carry over your cracked skills, current demons, Macca, and auction level.
    • Overclocked's New Game+ works differently. You only carry over your Demon Compendium and the ability to summon the special demons that have restrictions on them that you have lifted, and bonuses to the MC's attributes. For any other form of bonus that was present in the original Devil Survivor (plus a few more), you have to earn Titles based on what you have accomplished during a playthrough, which give you Title Points that you then spend on the bonuses you want for your next playthrough. The titles and the points they give you are carried over playthroughs, meaning you can eventually buy out all bonuses by exploring more and more of the many possible options presented to you during the game. It also makes the game have more replay value by not limiting its difficulty from the start with your now super-powerful endgame demons. Finally, the secret battles in days 3 through 6 are unlocked for play.
  • New Media Are Evil: It turns out that the Internet is the perfect place to get emotions to fuel the summoning of demons. It also serves as a repository for them.
  • Nice Hat: Atsuro's hat, giving him the effect of Peek-a-Bangs without actually using hair. Also, Amane's... feather-hairpiece thing.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Escaping the lockdown breaks a lot more than the blockade...
  • Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Atsuro. He frequently points out scary ideas and concepts, or worse, uncovers them.
  • Nintendo Hard
    • Seriously, who was expecting to fight every freaking Bel you've defeated, in a row without after-battle recovery after taking on a TOWER? Admittedly, if you had subjected yourself to some serious level-grinding, you would've been more prepared, but still, it's pretty intense.
    • Fortunately, the gimmicks from most of the previous boss fights are gone, such as Jezebel's Lethal Lava Land and Belberith's moving platforms. You stil have to punch out Beldr with the Devil's Fuge though, so if you've neglected to raise the MC's strength stat since the first fight, well...
  • Noble Demon: Kresnik is literally just the spirit of a vampire hunter, so he's definitely a lot more benign than any other demon in town.
  • No Export for You: Was never released outside of Japan and North America. Since the DS is region-free importing is perfectly possible, though.
    • Averted regarding Overclocked. Ghostlight is taking care of that one in Europe.
  • No FEMA Response: The Yamanote Circle, a vast swathe of Tokyo's shopping district, is cordoned off by military forces ordered to kill anyone trying to escape the blackout zone.
  • Nonstandard Game Over: The worst (Yuzu/Escape) ending. It also subverts Multiple Endings by telling you that you've completed the mission, before going on to say how Tokyo was destroyed, everyone was killed and you've actually failed, in a way that'll make you feel like atotal jerk.
    • An even better example occurs if you join Honda when he tries to run the barricade.
      • Overclocked subverts the trop with the Yuzu ending with the 8th Day scenario for the route, which has you make up for your mistake, which had HUGE consequences. It clearly ends on a positive note for humanity.
  • Not So Different: Keisuke almost goes into a Heroic BSOD upon realizing that the way he uses Yama's powers to lash out at people makes him no different than them. Likewise, this is the logic Kaido uses if you let him kill Keisuke.
    • In a heroic version, in Atsuro's route you can point out that Naoya, for all his talking about not depending on others, his entire plan is dependent on the MC. It really pisses him off.
    • Fallen Gagyson will call you on this when using him as a fusion material:

Gagyson: USE DEMONS TO MAKE MORE DEMONS? THOU ART MORE DEMON THAN I. SUCH IS HUMANITY.

  • Not Quite the Right Thing: Some of the path branches involve this. The solutions you settle on can have unintended consequences... Day 5 can be a major offender here.
  • Obvious Beta: A few minor strings of text were left untranslated (nothing major or plot critical thankfully), and according to the developer statement about the Video Game Remake version, it's obvious they felt the original game did not meet its planned potential. It's still playable and enjoyable, so it subverts this trope in a functionality sense.
    • Overclocked actually fits this more than the original. Although Battle Aura's Blatant Lies description was fixed, one final boss talks in Japanese on the 8th day, and lag is easily visible at some points where there was no lag in the original. The lack of Wi Fi/Spotpass/Streetpass/any sort of multiplayer rubs some wrong, too.
  • Olympus Mons: At the endgame, you will be able to summon the Voice of God, the Shinto sun goddess, the Norse trickster god, three of the Four Heavenly Kings of Buddhism, the Hindu lord of all nagas, and even the Devil himself. And also Nyarlathotep.
  • Path of Inspiration: The Shomonkai Cult, which exists to power a demon named Belberith.
  • Phlebotinum Breakdown: The Laplace Mail that predicts the future begins to glitch out with each successive day, either because you're successfully screwing destiny or because more and more demons are being summoned to Earth.
  • Playable Epilogue: Overclocked's 8th day scenarios.
    • Yuzu: With the world a literal living hell, and all Demon Tamers hunted as traitors by the Angels and as terrorists by the SDF, you and Yuzu decide to make up for your monumental screwup by trying to banish Demons from the world forever.
    • Amane: With Tokyo under the control of Law, the Angels begin demanding that any human shown to be marked with a "death brand" be executed, claiming that these humans are corrupt beyond salvation. Seeing this as too extreme, you and Amane convince the Angels to let you try and save these "irredeemable" souls. Things get complicated by the sudden appearance of Okuninushi, who is not happy that his nation has fallen under Angel control.
    • Naoya: As Naoya helps the PC awaken his new demonic powers, God slips back into his early SMT-mindset and has Metatron incite a civil war between you and many of the remaining humans. You are presented with the choice to either slaughter both the Angels and the human rebels with impunity, or to spare the humans and concentrate solely on the Angels. Either way, Metatron ultimately challenges the PC and Naoya to one final duel.
  • Player Nudge: If you pick Yuzu's Route you end up fighting Loki, who chastises you for picking the "easy route" and not taking into account Naoya's suggestions to open up to the other people inside the lockdown. This is done so that lazier players realise that to open up the other Multiple Endings, they need to stop and talk to the other characters instead of simply zooming through the game.
  • Plotline Death: Nearly everyone WILL actually die unless you prevent it, hence the term Devil Survivor.
  • Police Brutality: At the end of day 4, some corrupt cops find a few COMPs and decide to use it to unleash demons on civilians for shits and giggles.
  • Powers as Programs
  • Rage Against the Heavens: Naoya wants the Main Character to aid him in this. It turns out that he killed the MC out of jealousy when they were Cain and Abel and wants to see Abel, God's beloved son, lead a rebellion against him and end the ordeal.
    • Kuzuryu founded the Shomonkai for this purpose. He believes that the only way to save humanity from sequential ordeals is to help Belberith destroy the source, God. Too bad Belberith has no plans to stop there...
      • However, it should be noted that both of them will be satisfied with God abandoning humanity, as a result of humanity renouncing the angel's control and severing their ties with them.
  • Redemption Demotion: Pretty much every character who you see fight before joining the party has access to a bunch of amazing skills. As soon as they join, the only skills they can use are the ones you've cracked.
    • Possibly justified in the sense that they make their COMPs a client to your MC's host COMP, which could limit their skill choice to the one's your COMP has cracked in order to for them to be a part of your group. On the plus side, it also explains how your other characters cracking skills adds them to your list.
  • Redemption Equals Life: Keisuke
  • Reed Richards Is Useless: Averted in Atsuro's ending. The game clearly mentions that demon-based technology is as much of a leap forward as the Industrial and Information Revolutions, and turns Japan into a leading world power.
  • Rescue Romance: Kaido invokes this (on your advice) in an attempt to win Mari's heart. Play your cards right, and it can end up saving several lives...
  • Sadistic Choice: If you're not careful in the early part of Day 5, you may find that you'll only be able to save either Mari or Keisuke. That'll teach you for doing Not Quite the Right Thing...
  • Screw Destiny: The Death Clock simply counts to the extremely likely day of death. The trio is able to bump up their initial 0 by beating the demon that would've killed them. Arguably the recurring theme of the game is to Screw Destiny.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: Don't. Really, don't.
      • Amusingly, ignoring this warning results in a better ending if you go for the 8th day. Just be prepared for a few chewing-outs.
    • God and his Angels abandon the earth in Yuzu's 8th Day.
      • Midori does this if you BS your way out of fighting Keisuke, and Keisuke, Midori and Yuzu do this if you go for the Naoya/Kaido route. Naturally, Atsubro sticks with you through anything and everything.
  • Secret Test of Character: The demon invasion and lockdown was actually planned by God as humanity's Last Second Chance. If they fail, then they will lose control of their own destinies and be ruled by the Kingdom of Heaven forever.
    • Then if you follow the Lawful path they lose the control to the Kingdom of Heavens anyway, just with you as the middleman...
  • Serial Escalation: Atlus claims that Overclocked is the largest game to have been voiced. In fact, it was so large, they thought it wouldn't fit inside the 3DS' cartridge. According to this post, Devil Survivor has approximately 20,000 words voiced, 5,000 of that for 8th Day alone. Even these statistics are surprising, because games like Catherine and Persona 4 have large chunks of voice-over, the former of which has a full voice-over. On another note, this justifies the Obvious Beta for the VO (see other tropes for further info).
  • Shaggy Dog Story - Yuzu's ending, but you really do bring it upon yourself.
    • Subverted by the 8th Day of the same route, which shows the repercusions of your acts, and involves taking responsiblity for them.
    • Also, several of the mini-plot lines sprayed over the whole week are this unless you intervene. For example, Gin wants to find Aya, his lover. When you give him the information that points him towards the person who could give him his answers, he'll be promptly and hopelessly killed unless you save him. The kicker is that if you had never given him the information to begin with, he would have spent his days in the lockdown perfectly fine and dandy. However, Gin does admit after the event that he knew anyway and was just fooling himself, and that he prefers that things went this way. ...Plus, you can't do his route if you don't give him the info.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Where the scale falls is completely dependent on how many cast members survive as well as which ending you get.
  • Sorting Algorithm of Evil: Averted with the Devas. One is already gone before the game even starts because it was defeated by Jezebel-possessed Amane, and you fight the strongest one first. The fight against the last two Devas is still challenging because they double team you and bring along a crapload of reinforcements.
  • Spiritual Successor: Devil Survivor seems intended as a successor to the older Majin Tensei line of strategy RPGs from the 90s, while utilizing many of the design lessons learned from latter SMT games produced in the 2000s (the later Persona titles in particular, with the increased focus on character interaction and time management).
  • Spiteful AI: Most of the late game enemies are given physical repel or a skill that reflects the next physical attack against them for little practical purpose other than to make physical attackers suck.
  • Spoiler Opening: For the eagle-eyed, the opening flashes up plenty of spoilery shots.
  • Stealth Pun: The main character is the reincarnation of Abel. He is a Bel.
    • In Overclocked, the COMPs get upgraded to 3DSs. Now there's more of a reason to say that looking at the top 3D screen feels like the demons are coming out! ...Oh wait, they're coming out actually. Oops!
  • Stepford Smiler: Haru
  • The Stinger: At the end of the game, the PC receives a message from Metatron. Depending on what ending you got, he'll either congratulate you or give you a stern warning.
  • Stop Helping Me!: There are battles where you are assisted by guest characters that are controlled by AI. If you're trying to Skill Crack a particular enemy, you better get to them fast or this will get very annoying.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Everyone in the remake, which is said to have over 20,000 spoken lines of dialogue, more than any other Atlus game to date.
  • Suicide by Cop: One of the many ways Haru can die.
  • Super Title 64 Advance: Devil Survivor, on Nintendo DS
  • Take Your Time: Free battles and moving around won't consume time so you can literally level grind for a few hours and run a few laps around the entire city and still make it to that critical plot point event in half an hour.
  • Technical Pacifist - Oh sure, you'll never have an issue with beating people to within an inch of their lives with demons. But actually killing them? Forget it.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: In a New Game+, it's possible to start a new game with a full demon registry in your COMP. The first fight of the game requires you to recruit three demons, so there's special dialogue if your COMP is full at this point and they therefore have nowhere to go.
    • Genre Savvy players, at first, will think that blocking a square that will be occupied by an incoming enemy unit will prevent them from coming out. Unfortunately, that won't stop new enemies from just walking past by and occupy another square beside the characters "blocking the way".
  • The Dragon: Yama for Keisuke, Pazuzu for Kaido.
  • Theme Tune Cameo: Haru apparently only sings the game's theme song.
  • Theme Naming: There's a recurring theme with demons (or other entities) with a name that contains "Bel" in it (Belzaboul, Belial, etc.), though some have been fudged a bit to make it work (for example, Beldr is supposed to be Balder, the Norse god who is invulnerable to everything). It's mentioned that they're all fragments of an entity called "Bel" which is probably "Baal," which means "Master" in Akkadian and is one of the oldest and most obscure gods in known anthropology.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill : In New Game Plus, you can do damage of the high thousands to those wimpy Kobolds and Pixies on Day 1, provided that you use your overpowered demons.
  • Three Amigos: The hero, Yuzu, and Atsuro.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Naoya
    • As if the evil smile 99% of his portraits have wasn't enough of a clue...
  • Tokyo Is the Center of the Universe: The game takes place entirely in Tokyo. However, the demons only started to appear because of the Shomonkai, who just happen to be based in Tokyo. If anything, the game shows that the well being of Tokyo (and all those who inhabit it) is almost negligable in the grand scheme of things.
    • Well, the reincarnation of Cain just happened to be a programmer in Aoyama...
  • Took a Level in Badass: In the middle of the week, Midori enlightens a lowly Jack Frost (level 14 Fairy) of the virtues of fighting for love and justice. Near the end of the week, he shows up to defend a bunch of low level demons as Black Frost, a level 47 team leader Demon. And you get to use him in a few routes.
  • Too Long; Didn't Dub: In the US version, most likely by accident; one particular line involving Gin fleeing from battle on Naoya's route was left in Japanese.
    • Non spoiler example. At one point on Day 4 you can speak with Haru, and regardless of your responses, she'll leave, and either way, the last line of text before the fade out is some untranslated japanese kanji.
    • Again in Yuzu's 8th Day. Some of the last in-mission lines spoken by Belberith are untranslated Kanji, but strangely, his defeat quote IS translated.
  • Trial and Error Gameplay: In the "save Midori" mission on day 4, a few turns in, the mission suddenly changes from "Scare off attackers" to "Escort attackers to escape points." But they're "attackers," so you still can't heal them. Hope you didn't beat them up too much...
  • Understatement: Naoya's profile in Amane's route. " The human reincarnation of Cain. Has a few issues as a result."
  • Unreadably Fast Text - Seems to show part of the actual code for the game (or maybe just the fictional code for the demon summoning program, but still!). Part of it is from Paul's Letter to the Romans which hints at some the game.
  • Unusual "Ears": The design of the Protagonist's headphones gives the appearance of this, of the cat-ears variety. This led to a fair amount of amusing head-scratching early in the game's promotional cycle as the promo art didn't make it clear that they were not his actual ears (it only gets really obvious from the side or in a complex background where you can see that the "ears" are hollow), thus leaving people wondering if we were going to get a franchise-first Furry protagonist.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: By the end of the game, you'll be hearing this a lot -- though everyone seems to have a different idea of just how to achieve Utopia...
  • The Very Definitely Final Dungeon: The top of the Hills Building, which is the point closest to a hole to the Demon World where the server that powers the demon summoning program can be fought.
  • Voice Grunting: All of the demons in Overclocked. The sound clips range from simple grunts, to Evil Laughter, angelic choirs, and, in the case of Jezebel, a Noblewoman's Laugh.
  • Villainous Breakdown: The MC can cause Naoya to have one of these in a couple routes, depending on dialogue choices. In Atsuro's route, pointing out that Naoya depended on the MC for all of his plans to work makes him lose it. And in Amane's route, the MC telling Naoya that he doesn't hate him even after learning that Naoya/Cain killed him in his past life as Abel makes him really lose it.
  • "Wake-Up Call" Boss: The Wendigo...
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Beldr is completely invincible except for one thing: a certain plant called the Demon's Fuge or, by demon logic, any representative of it, including a cell-phone strap.
  • We Cannot Go on Without You: Most of the time, it's perfectly fine to let anyone die.
    • One mission—specifically the boss battle against Beldr—requires you to stay alive, however. And with good reason: You have the only means of damaging Beldr, and if you get wiped, there'll nothing left to stop him from slaughtering the entire lockdown.
    • However, the whole Unit is removed from the map if the Leader (the unit in the middle) goes down. Luckly you do have Recarm if that happens...
  • Wham! Line

Peaceful days are over.
Let's survive.

  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Due to the way the branching paths work by the end of the game, some plot threads built up over the course of the game will inevitably get shunted to the side and left unresolved. Though with Overclocked's 8th day epilogue scenarios, that may no longer be the case with some of them.
    • Example: What was Honda doing with the Gigolo during the last hours of the 6th day? Though the deal they made is left rather unresolved, Honda gets a new COMP from him, which he uses to bust out of the lockdown with other demon tamers in Yuzu's ending when you escape. It's the same COMP he uses up until Belberith offs him in the 8th Day of the same route.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Openly asked by Midori, when deciding to pull a Big Damn Heroes to Jack Frost. It's clear from the scene that the Humans are the agressors, and the demons care about the survival of each other. With what you may have seen from humans turning on each other, it can speak volumes.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: See You Bastard.
  • Where It All Began: The last battle in Yuzu's ending takes place where you first summon the demons.
  • World of Buxom: Nearly all the female characters are incredibly stacked, with Yuzu and Mari standing out in particular. While the only exceptions are Haru and Midori, Haru's tiny boobs are offset by her dangerously low-hanging dress, and despite having medium-sized breasts, Midori's outfit accentuates them.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Once Dolly gets a COMP to call her own, she assumes she's in some kind of screwed-up Magical Girl anime. It ain't nearly half that happy and idealistic, hon, and you're gonna learn that the hard way.
  • X Meets Y - Shin Megami Tensei, Pokémon meets Fist of the North Star (in that everyone has powers and is willing to abuse them for self-gain).
    • Not much of a stretch on the second case...considering (until some manga says otherwise) everyone that joins excluding Izuna seems to use their bare hands and not much else in the physical weapons department...
    • Fist of the North Star would be more fitting for the three main Shin Megami Tensei games, which all take place after various (and for some, nuclear-related) apocalypses and have protaganists that notably follow more chaos-aligned roots (as seen with the canon endings).
  • You Bastard - Yuzu's ending has this in spades, with freakin' Metatron chewing you out for what you did.
    • Try doing Amane's route, then on your next playthrough do Naoya's route. Seeing your allies from your previous playthrough leave or oppose you is quite jarring.
  • Your Days Are Numbered - Literally, due to the Death Clock. "Fear the numbers you will see. Fear the time left..."

Conquer Your Demon. Break Your Barricade.

Let's Survive.