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Atmosfear (or Nightmare as it was once known) was a board game set in a mystical realm. Its current[when?] edition sets you as either one of four monsters, or as a "Skull Rider." The board was set up in a fan pattern, with eight blades set around a central hub. In the middle was a cup, in which you placed a folded up piece of paper with your fear written on it. The eight players would roll 1d6, and the four lowest would then play as the aforementioned Skull Riders, while the four highest would play as one of eight monsters. Any fans not in use would be flipped to reveal a "Sewer" ream. The objective of the game for the monsters was simply to collect eight different coloured keystones, then get back to their numbered area in the hub, roll their number, and then hope like heck you did not draw your fear.
The runner of the game was- "SILENCE MAGGOT" *thunder crack* "You are not worthy to introduce me, the Gate Keeper. So, you pathetic worms, you call yourself tropers? Well let's just see about that. I am the ruler of this realm. Complete my game in one hour, or you shall be trapped here forever! if you want to stay on my good side, then fill out some tropes below, or suffer for all eternity! He... hahahahahahaha"
Yeah... That was the Gate Keeper, and if you want to be his friend, forget it. He will interrupt the game, and punish, or reward, you. But he will most likely punish you. Not only will you have to brave his psychotic desires, but you will also have to deal with those four other players... The Skull Riders.
The Skull Riders live in suffering and agony, and this makes them very angry. Dark skeletons, riding with their Duster coats floating in the breeze, cowboy hat shading their glowing eye sockets, and fingerless gloves grasping their mounts. They used to ride horses, but these days they have settled for modern low rider motorbikes. The only way to end their agony, is to make yours! Beware.
Oh, and watch out for- "STOP!" *thunder crack* "Who's troping next?! Hands up?! You are BANISHED TO THE
BLACK HOLE BLAGOLE!"
Wait, what! No! Please- Eyaaarrgggg''gggghh-
Not to be confused with the British jazz funk band of the same name.
- Dark Fantasy
- Dramatic Thunder: Every single time the Gatekeeper wants to get your attention. Other hosts have different sound effects; for instance, Khufu the mummy has a high pitched scream.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The first booster games had the time tick foward, instead of the countdown of later games.
- Even Better Sequel: Atmosfear: The Harbingers, which featured the return of the original Gatekeeper and more developed game mechanics, and Atmosfear: The Gatekeeper, which bought the series into the DVD era and featured randomized games.
- For the Evulz: Most, if not all, of the hosts.
The Gatekeeper: ...You ask why? Because I can. Because I am the Gatekeeper! AND THIS IS MY GAME!! AND YOUR NIGHTMARE!!!*snort* Hahahahahahahahaha!
- Incoming Ha- "STOP!" *Thunderclap* "I am.....the GATEKEEPER!"
- Hair-Trigger Temper: The Gatekeeper yells at you as soon as he suspects you're not doing his every word as they leave his mouth, punishes you for not calling him by his whole name in time, seethes with hatred at the player who rolled lowest in his games, and blows up when you win. One can only wonder what sorts of terrible things he could do if he was actually able to see the actions of the players.
- Large Ham: All of the hosts, really, but the Gatekeeper in the original (and The Harbingers) has to be the largest.
- Luck-Based Mission: Arguably the entire game, as Spoony pointed out. If no-one is in a position to win the by the end of the game, then the Gatekeeper (or whoever is hosting) will start randomly giving all of the keys to whichever player can roll the highest number.
- Nintendo Hard: The "Staring Contest" in the original game. It lasts for two minutes, which will probably result in all but the most adept starers losing a key.
- One-Winged Angel: Each of the hosts adopts a gradually more horrific form as the game goes on. The Gatekeeper in the original looks pretty much the same at the start and end of the game, the only difference being more sinister lighting and a few subtle makeup effects. Baron Samedi in the second booster tape already looks pretty gruesome when the game starts, but becomes more and more demonic as the game progresses. The Witch in the third tape starts out as a foxy lady, but becomes the steretypical "ugly witch" by the end of the game. Finally, the Vampire in the fourth and final booster tape starts out as a normal looking woman, but morphs into an outright Eldritch Abomination by the end.