"So far, our party includes an insane troper who has telekinesis and hallucinates ghost pirates with posh British accents and a double amputee burn victim janitor who beats people to death with a mop. And this is in the "real" world."
"I love how nobody can keep track of the potentially world destroying quest item."
A Roll to Dodge game with a unique premise, Roll to Roll to Dodge, A Meta Adventure was created by Gatleos on December 26, 2010 on the Bay 12 Forums and may be found here. It is currently[when?] on Turn 125 and counting.
The story begins with five people waking up in a cell. They are promptly informed by a mysterious voice that they are going to be playing a very exciting game of Roll to Dodge. Meanwhile, in another Dimension, five people find themselves in a tavern.
What follows is an epic story of mass murder, insanity, and well thought out then abruptly derailed plot.
- Artifact Title: The 'Roll to Roll to' part references the fact that the real world characters had computer screens from which to control their fantasy world counterparts. Gatleos removes them a few turns in due to Rule of Fun leading to nobody knowing quite how they maintain the connection, aside from a few mysterious signals centered around communications array. Now it's more like 'Play two RTD's, die in one, die in the other.'
- Complexity Addiction: Gatleos... and we all love him for it.
Gatleos: You know, I'm actually getting to the point where I'm going to need to make a flowchart or something to keep track of all the layers of narrative going on. Not to mention the time shenanigans.
- Gatleos as of turn 115 has admitted that there are plots that have been revealed, some that have been stealthly snuck in, and still more that haven't shown up yet. He just hopes this goes on long enough to get through all of them.
- Cool Shades: A couple of the META player characters wear these now. A group of Agents in the FANTASY wear these as well.
- Catch Phrase: "DAMMIT DERM!"
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Inverted, or something. Instead of the fourth wall being broken from the inside, it seems to be assaulted from the outside by ghost pirates. Ghost pirates that existed only in the mind of one character in the META Adventure have suddenly turned up in the Fantasy Adventure.
- Ironically, despite the odd nature of game, none of the player characters have done anything to break the fourth wall from the FANTASY Adventure side of things. No, not even Derm... yet.
- As of TURN 100 (YAY!), this has been shattered by Edgar. It seems the FANTASY world might be a little more "real" than first given credit. It seems the ghost pirates are dwarves from a simulation and they want to break free of the simulation. SO, you can now say the main goal of the characters in the FANTASY word is to break the (inner)-fourth wall once and for all.
- Kyle (A META PC) attempts to get an item from the FANTASY adventure. He fails, so at least we know the Inner Fourth Wall is partially intact.
- At this point, it should be noted that this game has officially declared war against the 4th Wall and its many incarnations on no less than three fronts!
- This trope has been upgraded from a lower category to here for the sole reason that this has practically become a standard feature of the adventure whether META, FANTASY, REAL, HOLO-DECK, ON STAGE, or (for scalability) ETC.
- Epic Fail: Inevitable, seeing as they usually have a 1 in 6 chance of doing just that.
- One of Us: Gatleos will occasionally point out Tropes in his own posts.
- Madness Mantra: Gatleos: TENTACLESNUFFPORNTENTACLESNUFFPORNTENTACLESNUFFPORN
- Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: Check. Check. Check. Check.
- Ghost Pirate: Double Check.
- Seriously, not only have all these things literally appeared in the game, but the spirit of the trope is abound in spades. Amphibian Peg-legged Giant Mutant Scorpion Rat. Check. Heck, even the premise of the adventure is this. A RTD game within an RTD game where several forum goers are subjected to two awesome adventures whether they like it or not. And that was just the first post.
- No Fourth Wall: Turn 116. Kyle (META PC) during the FANTASY turn, asks the GM (THE REAL GM: GATLEOS) what he should do next in the FANTASY turn. Kyle also comments on Gatleos's sprite being higher res than everyone else's which causes Gatleos to leave, thus not finishing HEN's (Kyle's FANTASY alter-ego) turn. HEN complains and Kyle tells him to shut it.
- No Inner Fourth Wall: While it hasn't exactly happened yet, Turn 100 reveals this to be what the ghostly dwarven pirates want.
- Random Number God: Plays an extremely large role in how the players actions will turn out.
- Roll to Dodge: Do I need to say it?
- Shout-Out: Quite a lot of them.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Textyman is dropped shortly after it appears. Also: We never find out what Dermonster's plan for the 6 post game of tic-tac-toe was.
The individual Universes provide examples of:
- Almighty Janitor: Kyle, isn't quite there yet. He has been through a lot though.
- Badass Beard: That green thing that John Freeman grew.
- Combination Attack: All five Players can unleash a massive Singalong attack, or Derek, MC, Kyle, and Monk can team up to fire a cone of fire followed by a large piercing laser. Only the singalong has been used so far, to get a bunch of Abominations drunk and passed out on the floor after a rousing impromptu kareoke session.
- Explosive Leash: Each META character starts out with an Explosive Collar. If the FANTASY character dies, the collar explodes. There has been at least a couple times when someone was shoved out an elevator door to prevent everyone else from dying.
- Hollywood Cyborg
- Hollywood Hacking: Derek's specialty.
- How We Got Here: A recent set of "turns" in the "META META" world revealed the condition of Earth and Derek prior to being kidnapped. It seems to involve Dwarf Fortress version 0.99.42's release becoming sentient. Granted this may simply be a joke, but ultimately shows Derek being kidnapped by a mysterious figure and end with the first couple lines from the very beginning of the story.
- Improbable Weapon User: Kyle, the Janitor, gets bonuses for using cleaning implements as weapons.
- Kamehame Hadoken: Derek can fire one of these off every three turns due to his NERD RAEG.
- One of Us: Monk's chosen profession is 'troper'.
- Show Within a Show: The shortlived minigame 'Textyman' Derek played when the players didn't post actions fast enough. There was a sequel in the roleplaying forum.
- The WHOLE PREMISE of this RTD adventure. A group of people are kidnapped and try to escape in a RTD Adventure and at the same time are playing a fantasy themed RTD adventure.
- The Power of Rock: Derek creates a sonic cannon/guitar activated by EPIC RIFFING! Not bad for a computer specialist.
- Tropes Will Ruin Your Life: Literally. The player character, Monk will become distracted and gain a penalty to his mental rolls thanks to this.
- Arm Cannon: Edgar replaces his right arm with a harpoon gun.
- Badass Beard: Urist. Not only is his beard great and bushy, but he grabs stuff with it! Although admittedly, he has no arms.
- Now with sideburns that can grasp independently of the beard.
- Body Horror: Derm kinda sorta makes his kitty into a meter wide writhing mass of tentacles.
- Derm himself gets an arm replaced by a 12 foot long one food wide length of muscle tissue. The other is now a long purple tentacle. This strangely doesn't appear to have any penalty applied to it.
- Derm is also making the other members of the team into body horrors simply because he prefers shooting absurd levels of summoning magic into their wounds instead of, say, using the team doctor. It does get results, though.
- Can't Argue with Elves: But you sure as heck can burn down their tree home.
- Cool Boat: The Borealis. Until it sinks a couple turns later.
- Combat Tentacles: Derm replaces his hand with one.
- Delayed Explosion: The eruption of Mt. Helmath.
- Dynamic Entry: This is what Derm was sort of attempting when he killed the Goblin Chieftain. See Off the Rails below.
- Eldritch Abomination: Mutie, a spherical mass of tentacles with the head of a cat, that even speaks in Zalgo.
- Elves vs. Dwarves: Urist Anvilsmasher's ability, Martial Trance is full of this.
- Healing Hands: Surprisingly, Urist, to an extent. He used his martial trance to get a bonus in order to beat Frelock back into shape. And somehow, he succeeded.
- Interface Spoiler: When the bag holding the Demon Mayor was tossed in Mt. Helmath, there was no reason to believe he was still in that bag except that the goal was marked as accomplished.
- MacGuffin Escort Mission: The second major goal of the game was to escort the Demon Mayor to Mt. Helmath and toss him in.
- The Men in Black: Three agents confront the player characters and seem to think they are breaking the rules. I wonder what gave them that idea?
- Turn 100 confirms there are more than just the three shown previously.
- Naughty Tentacles: When Derm gains a tentacle arm, he jokes about this. Then immediantly says that he's more likely to incinerate everything before he has a chance to.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Derm. I think there's a list forming in Crowning Moments of Funny.
- Off the Rails: "To be honest, killing that chieftain completely changes the path this story is taking. I just wasn't expecting Derm to immolate him beyond recognition before he could even say a word. Not sure why I wasn't expecting that."
- Outrun the Fireball: The eruption of Mt. Helmath had two characters do this.
- Person of Mass Destruction: Derm has created Typhoons, sunk a ship, created genetic abominations, burned down entire forests,caused massive explosions, and had obtained the Necronomicon, but lost it later.
- Power Glows: An agent steals one of the player character's abilities and it takes the form of a glowing green orb.
- Our Liches Are Different: Frelock becomes what ammounts to a good aligned Lich.
- Our Monsters Are Weird: The Unirat.
- Please note at this point all of these have been created by Derm, usually on purpose.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: As new features are added to Dwarf Fortress, similar things begin to appear in the FANTASY adventure.
- Summon Magic: Derm's other modus operandi. The bulk of his atrocities seem to stem off him trying to do stuff that Summon Magic doesn't actually do.
- Status Quo Is God: Regardless of what they do, the adventure party members ARE GOOD GUYS and the HEROES of this tale. Anything bad they may do whether intentional, unintentional, or somewhere in between (Derm...) will be for the greater good.
- The author even says he takes it as his personal challenge in creative writing to accomplish this feat.
- Stop Helping Me!: Edgar to Derm: "WHAT?! NO STOP DON'T PLEASE SAVE ME PIRATE JESUS AAAAAAAGGGGGHHHHH"
- Stuff Blowing Up: Derm's modus operandi
- Sword of Plot Advancement: And they let it and its wielder sink into the ocean.
- Tome of Eldritch Lore: The Necronomicon Ex Mortis
- Villain Protagonist: Derm, definitely.
- You All Meet in An Inn