Legend of Mana

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Nine centuries ago, the Mana Tree burned to ashes.
The power of Mana lived on inside Mana stones, enchanted instruments, and artifacts.
Sages fought with each other for control of these last remnants of Mana.
Then, after hundreds of years of war, as the power of Mana began to wane, those who sought it grew scarce, and the world returned to peace.
After that, mankind grew afraid to desire. Their hearts filled with empty emotions, and grew estranged from my hands. They turned their eyes away from my infinite power, and were troubled by their petty disputes.
Remember me!
Need me!
I can provide you with everything!
I am love.
Find me, and walk beside me.

Legend of Mana is the first game in the World of Mana series to be released on the Playstation.

Unlike the previous games in the World of Mana, which have a fairly straightforward story, Legend of Mana is much more of a Wide Open Sandbox. You collect artifacts, which you can place on a grid, magically turning them into towns and dungeons. Various events and quests will occur in the places around you. While many are one-shot deals, there are three major arcs and several minor ones that will pop up. You don't actually need to complete more than one arc to finish the game, but it is possible to do every single event in a single playthrough.

Legend Of Mana plays more or less like Seiken Densetsu 3 with a few additional quirks:

  • HP is restored at the end of each screen, making easy mode a breeze.
  • You can have one of various NPCs join your party, each of which have different synchronization effects. You can swap NPCs whenever you like, provided you know where they are.

It was released on the American Playstation store as a PS One Classic on March 22, 2011.

Tropes used in Legend of Mana include:
  • Aerith and Bob: One story arc gives us Matilda (normal), Irwin (somewhat normal), Daena (unusual spelling of a normal), and Escad (not normal)
    • Jumi names run like this as well, from Diana to Elazul. Justified in that their names are similar to the type of gem of which their cores are made. Diana has a diamond core, Elazul has lapis lazuli, Rubens has ruby, et cetera.
  • After Combat Recovery: One of the things that makes the game so easy is that you return to full hitpoints after killing everything in a particular screen.
  • After the End: At the start of the game, Fa'Diel is nothing but a desert wasteland, and the opening narration suggests that the world's civilizations destroyed each other in pointless wars to possess the remnants of Mana power that remained in artifacts. The player's actions can be seen as rebuilding Fa'Diel by planting the artifacts (or you could go with the grimmer Alternate Character Interpretation).
  • All Just a Dream: The philosophy of the Wisdom Pokiehl and the Sproutlings.
  • All There in the Manual: The game has a very detailed history, and you'll miss a few plot points without reading the books in your library.
  • And I Must Scream: The toys in the junkyard were animated to fight in a great war. They are still alive, but all they can do is lie there and think about the war.
  • Anticlimax Boss: Lord of Jewels 1000. You can't lose to this guy if you try. He barely even fights back. It's especially disappointing after Lord of Jewels 999, who was (by Legend of Mana standards at least) fairly difficult.
    • Due to the wonders of alchemy and weapon tempering, it's possible to beat the final boss in two hits. Of course, that's on normal difficulty settings.
  • Arc Words: The Goddess is love.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Again, all three major story arcs. The world is saved, but at a very high price.
  • Black and Gray Morality: Alexandra wants to kill all the Jumi to save Florina. Blackpearl expects and demands that Florina save the Jumi at the cost of her own life.
    • In fact, many of the characters are this. Irwin is seen by Escad as a monster for what he did to Matilda, but Matilda and Daena think differently. Larc knows what he is doing is wrong, but he continues to follow Draconis in hopes of returning to the living.
      • Also,depending on the quests you do, your character may end up doing things which are not inherently good. Like aiding Larc and Niccolo.
  • The Blacksmith: Watts appears once again, this time to teach you to be The Blacksmith.
  • Blind Idiot Translation: Completely and utterly averted, Legend of Mana's translation job is so good that it's one of the strongest points of the game. Although, several name changes that were made to items and characters removed what would have been stronger ties to the rest of the games in the series, at least for those that existed at the time.
  • Bodyguard Crush: Jumi Guardian/Knight relationships; just about all of the games' protectorate/protector pairs pretty much dive headfirst into this trope as well.
  • Brother-Sister Team: Bud and Lisa (though the latter was more or less roped into it).
    • Larc wanted to be one with his sister (it's why he made the Deal with the Devil); it's suggested in the Distant Finale that he at least eventually reunites with her.
  • But Thou Must!: Averted most of the time, as you could refuse any NPC if you didn't want to play their subquest, but in the Dragon Lord Arc you're not even given the option to refuse Vadise once said Dragon Lord takes over hell. (But then, you're the one that helped the Dragon Lord to power in the first place...)
    • In fact, you can kill (directly or indirectly) a handful of the major NPCs with a little willful mischief.
  • Can't Catch Up: Your NPC assistants and pets unless you have an accessory equipped. Leveling NPCs is pointless anyway since their levels reset every game cycle.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Gilbert.
  • Changeling Fantasy: Rachel hates her life and wants something more exciting; she eventually gets her wish when she switches bodies with a student at the Geo academy.
  • Classy Cat Burglar: Sandra is perceived as this by those who aren't aware of her genocidal intentions against the Jumi.
  • Combos: Sufficiently long attack strings will drop full-heal items, as well as add damage. Since only a limited number of Weak Attacks can be strung together, and a single Strong Attack will always cause the combo to end, this leads to a number of Unnecessary Combat Rolls or Lunges.
  • Commonplace Rare: Ash is one of the best tempering materials in the game. Nothing drops it, and you can only find it in 3 treasure chests per playthrough.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Accessories and weapons equipped on NPCs are named with as many as 11 characters. The player, however, can only rename their equipment with 10 characters. Totally unfair when you need just one more letter for that awesomely symbolic or witty name but it won't let you, even though you can look at the NPCs and see that they can.
  • Continuity Nod: Some of the Artifacts are actually event items from other World of Mana games, materials are still named after the (now-destroyed) cities in the rest of the series, and the final boss takes forms resembling monsters and Big Bad-types from the previous games.
    • Also, save points come in the form of Sprite (the Squishy Wizard of Secret of Mana) statues.
    • Watts the dwarven blacksmith appears in all the Mana games, as does the dancing merchant in the turban, Mr. Moti, who acts as your alternate save point in this one.
    • In the intro, it's stated that nine centuries before the game begins, the Mana Tree is destroyed. This is probably a reference to Thanatos using the Mana Fortress to destroy the Tree near the end of Secret of Mana.
    • In the art museum, most if not all of the statues are from Seiken Densetsu 3.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Pokiehl and Nunuzac. OK, neither of them are even remotely moronic, but during the game, they remain among the more lighthearted characters. But there's hints dropped, like the toy in the junkyard begging Pokiehl to let him keep fighting. Or Nunuzac lamenting the thought of having to teach his students "true conjuration".
    • Nunuzac in particular looks like a carpet because he overloaded on magic while fighting a seriously nasty world-threatening opponent and trapped himself in his own conjuration circle in the process of saving the day. At least it apparently made him immortal, and he gets to show off his true abilities when he kidnaps a Sproutling and tries to trap it in the Dream Realm to keep it from creating the Mana Tree.
  • Deal with the Devil: Larc.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: At the beginning of the game, after you beat the naughty sorcerer Bud and his sister Lisa, Bud is so impressed by you he asks to become your apprentice.
  • Devour the Dragon: In this case, the Dragon goes optionally. Sandra sacrifices herself to let the Lord of Jewels eat her core to become more powerful.
  • Dialogue Tree: You learn about the history of Fa'Diel via one of these and the Onion Kid's tutorial is another; some of the dialogue also differs based on which gender you pick as your character.
  • Double Entendre: after the first Monique/Gilbert mission, Monique laments the fact that Gilbert wants a "much bigger lamp" and then complains that "size is meaningless, it's how it works".
    • Gilbert has another one, with Kathinja. When she threatens to petrify him, he claims that he's "getting hard".
  • Dream Land: You visit the dream realm three times: 1) to defeat a monster haunting Florina's dreams, 2) to save the Sproutling kidnapped by Nunzac, and 3) to see what happened in Matilda's childhood to make Escad hate Irwin.
  • Dub Name Change: Any character whose name came from a Japanese word.
  • Enigmatic Minion: The Lord of Jewels.
  • Failure Knight: Elazul lost his previous Guardian long ago; for that matter, we never even learn her name. When Pearl appears, protecting her becomes almost his everything.
    • Additionally, Florina's current guardian ( Alexandra) believes that her previous one ( Blackpearl) was willing to consign Florina to sacrificing her life force to produce healing tears, and carries a huge grudge because of that.
  • Fantastic Racism: Niccolo towards the Sproutlings.
  • Foreshadowing: Talking to the NPCs give you lots of hints about what's going on, and a lot of your cactus' apparent non-sequitors only make sense in retrospect. "Seventh is Girl", for example, refers to Matilda, who takes the previously vacant seat of the Seventh Wisdom after she dies.
  • Freudian Trio: The three dragons Jajara (Superego), Vadise (Ego), and Akravator (Id).
  • Frying Pan of Doom: Bud's weapon.
  • Gender Blender Name: Larc, Alex (which is plot-relevant), and Elazul in Japanese (his original name was Ruri).
  • Geo Effects: Each land has an intrinsic mana value; good luck figuring out what that does without a walkthrough.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Just... play the first Geo event.
  • Giant Space Flea From Nowhere: a lot of the bosses are like this, but the centaur boss at the top of the Tower of Leires was a bit extra blatant.
  • The Glasses Come Off: Alex.
  • Gratuitous Foreign Language: The opening and ending themes are sung in Swedish. Most people are surprised to find out that they were not Singing Simlish.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Escad.
  • Guide Dang It: Big time. Several missions involve needing to talk to specific people in a specific order with little info about where you're supposed to go. And as for the god-slaying sword mentioned in Game Breaker, good luck figuring out how to make one of those on your own.
    • The placement of lands, including the original home site. The ideal setup for the aforementioned Item Crafting stuff. Endless numbers of sidequests which can become Lost Forever (well, sort of, anyway) if you make one tiny little mistake. The whole... damned... GAME is one giant Guide Dang It.
  • Helpless Good Side: Pearl.
  • Heroic Mime: The main character does not even seem to possess any real personality (save for any dialogue tree options), other than helping people and being absurdly stupid in the Underworld.
  • Hey, You: The player character's default name, literally, is just "YOU". This is more than likely a Shout-Out to the character's original homophonic name in the game's original language, which incidentally makes this a real name and not just a hint as to what sort of name you should provide your character with. There is actually a way to replace this with a randomly-generated name on the naming screen - iirc, you can just hit the Select button to gen a new one.
  • Hide Your Lesbians: The manga made Alexandra male to make her Bodyguard Crush on Florina more "acceptable".
    • The Ultimania guide lists the identities and genders of all the Jumi within the game (and a few that were removed). Alexandra is the only one listed Male/Female, as in BOTH. One is not a disguise for the other; Alexandra actually changes forms, Alex is male and Sandra is female.
    • Alexandrite (the stone) changes color depending on the kind of light it's in.
  • Hive Mind: The Sproutlings and Flowerlings.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Invoked by the Faeries, and by the sirens during the Elle/Monique/Gilbert story arc.
  • Idiosyncratic Difficulty Levels: Normal, Nightmare, and No Future.
  • Improbable Hairstyle: Worn by the female protagonist, called "hair pipes" in game.
  • Infinity+1 Sword: Or Spear, bow, etc... Unique in that these weapons have to be crafted using not crafting recipes, but honest to god techniques and patterns. Getting a weapon to 200 with a basic understanding of the rules isn't too hard. Getting a 999 power weapon is a flat out Guide Dang It.
  • In-Universe Game Clock: Time advances at the rate of one day per world traveled or entered, though you can also sleep in the Geo Inn as well.
  • Item Crafting: You can create your own weapons (and via lots of farming and tempering, make Infinity Plus One Swords, Spears, Bows, or whatever your Weapon of Choice is) and build your own robot golem to aid you in battle (and using those Infinity Plus One Swords as ingredients, turn it into an unstoppable death machine).
  • Item Farming: All of your crafting ingredients, save for the scant few you find in treasure chests during each game cycle.
  • It's Up to You: Seriously, how does anybody get anything done in Fa'Diel without the player character?
    • Hell, you even have to build the map!
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Elazul emerges as a far more likable character than his earliest appearances might lead one to believe.
  • Knight Templar: Lady Blackpearl.
  • Like a Badass Out of Hell: The player character every time they visit the Underworld (might as well install revolving doors); you also prevent the Dragon Lord successfully doing this once he takes it over.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Inverted. Thanks to exploiting the Item Crafting system, it is possible to make a Game Breaker Infinity+1 Sword, but no such equivalent exists for making magic instruments, which are used to cast spells. This means that when you start taking on Nightmare Mode, magic users will get left in the dust.
  • Lost Forever: In one of your sidequests, your Cactus (who is responsible for Cactus Diary entries) runs off and you have to find him. If you finish any of your other sidequests in the meantime, they will not be recorded as complete in said Diary and you'll have to wait for a New Game+ to try again.
    • Hell, any of the Cactus Diary entries are Lost Forever if you fail to talk to Lil' Cactus before finishing another event. This can be very irritating for first-time players due to abruptly-ending events ("Mana Orchards" springs to mind) causing the previous event's entry to be lost, or even worse, the event "Lil' Cactus". Whatever you do, NEVER talk to Bud if you have a Diary entry waiting to be recorded. (Luckily, "Daddy's Broom" does not cause this same thing: while the cactus leaves, he also comes back before the event ends. Once again, however, failing to talk to Bud LAST will screw you over: if you don't, you'll lose Bud when you go back into the house to talk to Lil' Cactus, and he won't come back until after the event.)
    • In addition, anything in The Flames or Lucemia is lost forever once those areas are no longer accessible. Luckily for us, the game's cyclical nature means that "forever" lasts only until your current playthrough is over.
  • Lovable Sex Maniac: Gilbert.
  • Love Dodecahedron: Irwin and Escad both have a thing for Matilda; Daena seems to have some form of feelings for both Matilda and Escad. It doesn't end prettily.
  • Love Makes You Evil: Larc (sold his soul to be as strong as his sister), Alexandra (pushing the Jumi into extinction to save Florina from dying), Irwin (plotting world destruction to free Matilda from her duties), and Escad (says he wants to kill Irwin because the latter is a demon, but comes off as wanting to Murder the Hypotenuse) all do what they do because of love.
  • Loyal Animal Companion: You can capture your own or recruit NPCs if the conditions are right.
  • Magic Music: Enchanted instruments conjure elemental spells when played; additionally, harpies can cause nautical disasters whenever they sing.
  • Man Behind the Man: The Lord of Jewels behind Sandra. Probably. The Lord of Jewels was conspicuously absent from the character profiles, and no one knows exactly what he wanted out of the whole deal.
    • The Ultimania guide states that he is a Star, and that he is using the Jumi cores to evolve into his final form. Supposedly he will also gain the power to create a crystal teardrop in the process. It is also stated that he is a man who loves beautiful things, and as he finds the Jumi beautiful he wants to help them, in his weird little way.
  • Man On Fire: Dragons can cause a burning status aliment that causes massive, continuous damage. (But you can do the same to the enemy with the right pet or magic.)
    • Freezing and Poison cause much the same effect.
  • Marathon Boss: Tropicallo. No matter how hard you hit the hands, the boss takes a fixed amount of damage, and it only takes damage when it regenerates one of his knocked out heads. On higher difficulties this will take forever. And if you're caught in the self destructing hand's attack (that fills the entire screen) start the entire fight over.
    • You have to go through this fight twice: Once for plot purposes, and afterwards for the most ridiculous Romantic Plot Tumor you can imagine. Lord help you if you go through these quests on No Future mode.
    • Tropicallo also has a younger brother, called Labanne. The only difference between both is that Labanne takes less damage to kill, and Labanne is fought on a much bigger screen so his self-destruct attack is much easier to dodge. For either of those bosses, the heads take morbid amounts of damage to kill on No Future mode. Anybody not using a weapon with over 500 attack power for Labanne, and with max attack power for Tropicallo is bound to get stuck on the bosses for quite a while. Hint: getting a weapon with over 300 attack already needs insane amounts of very precise tempering.
  • Meaningful Name: All of the Jumi are named after their gems, so if you pay attention you'll very quickly realize the connection between Alex the Gem Merchant, Sandra the Jewel Thief, and Alexandra the Jumi Knight.
    • Niccolo is named after Machiavelli.
  • Memento MacGuffin: Lisa's broom belonged to her magician father; when the Cactus accidentally throws it away, mistaking it for trash, this kicks off a subquest where you have to go retrieve it.
  • Mook Bouncer: Boinks teleport you to the location of their tails if you talk to them; Shadoles (but only in the sidequest where you have to save a suicidal NPC) return you to the bottom of hell if you so much as brush against them.
  • My Name Is Not Durwood: Early in the game, Duelle will ask if your name is "Chumpy"; answering "Yes" will result in you being addressed as such by all of the NPCs for the entire game cycle.
  • New Game+: Everything carries over except NPC levels and artifacts. You also unlock The Forbidden Tome, which increases the difficulty of the game (enemy HP and levels), in your library.
  • Nice Hat: The male protagonist's red floppy hat.
  • Nintendo Hard: Seriously. Yeah, the game got blasted for its ease. That's regular difficulty we're talking about. Try fighting Boreal Hound or Orc on No Future Mode.
  • Ominous Pipe Organ: A fair few songs have bits of it, but Lord of Jewels 1000's battle theme is all pipe organ.
  • Only Sane Man: Daena in the Heaven's Gate arc; Vadise for Dragon Emperor.
  • Our Orcs Are Different: Fa'Diel only has one Orc, and it's a sort of sharktopus sea monster.
    • It may be a reference to the obscure sea monster called an orc from the epic Orlando furioso.
    • Either way, it's still a name change from the Japanese version: it was originally called Shore Grell, which makes a lot of sense when you look at a normal Grell that can be found elsewhere in the game. An enemy with the name Grell also makes an appearance in Seiken Densetsu 3.
      • In Secret of Mana, the English name for the Grell enemy was Marmablue. Try and figure that one out.
  • Pet the Dog: After the end of the Jumi story arc, Alexandra throws a note to the player just like the ones she'd been leaving during her cat and mouse jewel stealing, Jumi killing game. The note reads "Please take care of Florina for me."
  • The Power of Love: Subverted, as Love Makes You Evil, and it's Matilda's love for Irwin that makes her reluctant to act (but she's similarly bound by her duties, so she refuses to leave them, either); by the end of her arc, Irwin has decided to reincarnate himself without any of his memories so that he doesn't have to deal with the tremendous mess that their relationship became.
    • Played straight, though, in the siren subquest—Gilbert's fickle womanizing gets him turned to stone, but is redeemed when his original girlfriend Monique decides to rescue him. He mends his ways, and they get a Happily Ever After.
      • Unless you screw up the cure so terribly that he blows up. Yeah.
  • The Power of Rock: The right tune will charm the mana elementals into approaching you and drop a silver or gold elemental coin.
  • Purely Aesthetic Gender: All that differs whether you play a male or female character is whether your male character's Nice Hat or female character's Improbable Hairstyle is mentioned in dialogue.
  • Random Effect Spell
  • Robot Buddy: after completing a quest with Dr. Bomb in the Junkyard, he builds a Golem lab in you workshop so you can make your own robot buddies. Given that the creation uses equipment you can make in the other workshops, the robot buddy can become a Game Breaker if you use a Infinity+1 Sword in its genesis or "logic block" creation.
  • Sadistic Choice: Near the end of the Heaven's Gate arc, Escad and Daena come to blows. You get to decide who to side with, causing the other person to initiate a battle to the death. You can't even Take a Third Option: saying that they're both wrong causes the one you'd been nicer to through the story arc to flip out and try to kill you.
  • Scenery Porn: Backgrounds are lovingly done in a soft pastel / watercolor style that's very easy on the eyes.
  • Shoot the Dog: Apparently, Inspector Boyd was a huge Sandra fanboy back when she was a Classy Cat Burglar, but when she started killing Jumi, he became ashamed and decided to take her down before she went too far over the Moral Event Horizon.
  • Shout-Out: There's a glove technique called "Fist of the Norse Star."
  • Shrinking Violet: Pearl.
  • Shrouded in Myth: Mr. Moti, the dancing turban man who acts as your save point while visiting towns. According to the in-game encyclopedia: "He is everywhere, doing everything."
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: The game's pretty far towards idealism, taking the point of view that if you're true to yourself things WILL work out right somehow.
  • Speaking Simlish: The Dudbears. Their vocabulary is composed of very few syllables.
    • Trivia: The Dudbear language isn't exactly gibberish. "Duba", their word for Dudbear, is also an African word for bear.
  • Sucking-In Lines: The vast majority of super moves.
  • Super-Powered Evil Side: The Mana Goddess has one. So does Pearl, kinda. (Dark Is Not Evil, yeah, but Lady Blackpearl is a walking Game Breaker while Pearl is just The Load).
  • Swiss Army Tears: Played straight and inverted: a Jumi's tears can heal (and perhaps even bring people back from the dead), but crying for one turns you into stone.
  • Tech Tree: New ability and super-moves are learned from old ones.
  • Theme Naming: The Jumi are all named after the jewels in their core.
    • The students at Geo are named after spices. You find out that Bud (and possibly Lisa) attended there for a while, too, but have since dropped out.
      • Speaking of Bud and Lisa, Lisa's name in the Japanese version was Corona, giving them theme naming as well.
  • To Hell and Back: The player character in the Dragon Lord Arc and a subquest where you rescue a despondent organist from Hell.
  • Two-Teacher School: Averted in Geo; the teachers even have different schedules depending on the day of the week.
  • Ultimate Blacksmith: Watts the Blacksmith teaches you how to become this for finding his hammer. Great, because, short of having someone else make and pawn it at the Junkyard, it's the only way to get that Infinity+1 Sword
  • Unwitting Pawn: Everybody not Alexandra in the Jumi Arc, but even she seems to be manipulated by the Lord of Jewels to some extent; both you and Larc are played by the Dragon Lord in that particular arc.
  • Vendor Trash: Most of the items for Item Crafting, though they don't sell for much; the valuable stuff is, alas, quite a bit more useful.
  • We Cannot Go on Without You: Averted, as it's only game over if all members of your party are dead, and even then, you can restart any battle at the beginning with a full super bar.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Larc, Alexandra, and Escad.
  • When Trees Attack: Besides the Sproutlings and Li'l Cactus, one of your enemies is walking-tree-themed.
    • And then there's the goddess herself...
  • Wizarding School: The Geo Academy.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: The Grapple command gives you the opportunity to suplex any enemy in the game - if you're lucky, it can even work on bosses that are at least fifty times your size!
    • They even did the research on pro wrestling moves, some of the special moves with the glove are named after obscure wrestling moves. For example, one of them was called "Tiger Driver '91". Back before Kenta Kobashi started using his "Burning Hammer", the Tiger Driver '91 was the ultimate murderdeathkill pro wrestling finisher - although only smarks knew about it
  • Yoko Shimomura: Responsible for the soundtrack.
  • You Are Worth Hell: Found at the culmination of Irwin and Matilda's story. However, when she greets him in the underworld, he simply leaves her without a word, averting it at the last moment. The nature of this world's underworld as "Hell" is a bit ambiguous however, as it seems more in line with some traditional mythological depictions than the Judeo-Christian standard.
  • You Bastard: The Lord of Hell arc pretty much exists to make you feel bad about killing everything that moves.