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Crystalis (known as God Slayer: Sonata Of The Far-Away Sky in Japan) was an Action RPG created by SNK. It begins about a century after a nuclear war that destroyed most of humanity and sent all of its inhabitants back to the metaphorical Middle Ages. To prevent this from happening again, the survivors built a floating tower to allow people to govern from high above. However, the evil emperor Draygon, using magic and up-until-now-forbidden science, has assembled an army and plans to Take Over the World by accessing the tower.

The hero is a young boy who was frozen in a cryogenic sleep. With the aid of four sages, he learns that the world is about to be doomed again, and that he will need to find four elemental swords to fight Draygon's army and prevent his goal of conquering the Tower a reality.


Crystalis contains examples of:

  • After the End
  • Anticlimax Boss: You'd think the actual endboss of an SNK game would be an SNK Boss, but compared to Those Three Or Four Bosses and the annoyingly hard stage you go through before the final battle, DYNA is almost insultingly easy.
    • Averted in one of the few good gameplay changes in the Game Boy Color remake - Draygon is fought after DYNA.
  • Apocalypse of the Week: "The End Day" was slated to occur on October 1, 1997.
  • Baleful Polymorph: The "Nuper" status turns you into a slime that can't attack or use magic. The only cure is the rare, expensive Fruit of Repun.
  • Big Bad: Emperor Draygon.
  • Cap: Your experience level is capped at 16.
  • The Cameo: Athena and Kensou (fresh off their debuts in Psycho Soldier) appear as two of the four Sages. However, Athena is called "Asina" and Kensou is rendered as "Kensu", a clear case of Engrish.
    • The village elders of two towns are also named Ralph (Ralf) and Clark, the Ikari Warriors-originated soldiers who're now far better known from King of Fighters.
  • Charged Attack: Every sword comes with a base level 1 charge. Most can charge to a level 2 attack after you acquire an orb to go with said sword (except the Crystalis sword, which also automatically comes with this), and the four elemental swords can hit a level 3 charge when an appropriate bracelet is equipped. Given how quickly the charge happens, these are frequently Awesome Yet Practical unless you're dealing with a huge swarm of enemies.
    • Actually, the Crystalis sword's apparent three charge levels is the result of a glitch and the sword was always meant to have just one charge level. If you go into your inventory (or the status screen) and come back out, the "extra" levels of charge disappear. Furthermore, if you avoid going into your inventory between receiving Crystalis and the battle with DYNA, you'll find that the "extra" levels do nothing.
  • Cowboy Bebop at His Computer: The manual! The story given in the manual is completely inaccurate and, in fact, makes the story in the game harder to understand! (Why would Draygon be searching for the tower if he built it?)
  • Distressed Damsel: Mesia. Somewhat subverted, as her main ability is summoning the Flying Tower of Doomy Doom Doom.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: One of the side effects of the "Telepathy" spell is that it allows you to communicate with animals.
  • Egopolis: The Draygonian Empire. That is all.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Some enemies are completely immune to one or more of the sword (e.g. the insects in the forest near Oak can only be damaged by the Sword of Fire.)
  • Evil Overlord: Draygon.
  • Fling a Light Into the Future: The Hero and Mesia.
  • Four Is Death, on both sides: There are four benevolent Sages, but there are also four evil generals who work for Emperor Draygon.
  • Forced Level Grinding: In the NES version, you cannot damage enemies or bosses if you aren't sufficient level. The GBC version averts this.
  • Giant Space Flea From Nowhere: Emperor Draygon is definitely the Big Bad, and has been for the entire game... until right at the end, when you kill him and then get whisked off to the flying tower. The actual final boss is the tower's computer, DYNA, who also happens to be ridiculously easy compared to Draygon.
  • Give Me Your Inventory Item
  • Good Bad Translation: "How do feel today?" Uh, okay...
  • Heroic Mime: Mostly played straight, as the hero has all of four lines, three of which are used to tell mortally wounded characters (first an Almost-Dead Guy on Mt. Sabre, later Stom and Akahana in Shyron) to STFU if they want to maximize their remaining time before having a Critical Existence Failure.
  • Hero of Another Story: Kensu, right up until the point he teaches you Flight. Whereas the other wisemen dedicate themselves to helping the hero, Kensu takes on the Empire himself. If it wasn't for a lucky shot from Karmine, he might've freed the other wisemen himself after Shyron fell.
  • Human Popsicle: The main character.
  • Humans Are Ugly: The elder of Oak doesn't like the smell of humans. In the GBA remake, it's one of the residents blocks the elder's house claiming he doesn't like that smell. That resident doesn't like the smell even after he accepts that humans are actually nice.
  • Improbable Power Discrepancy: Averted. DYNA is a pushover, and its only defense is a set of gatling guns. You easily defeat it with Crystalis, which the game manual notes is the most powerful weapon ever created.
  • King in the Mountain: Your character -- and Mesia! -- are asleep until the time comes to either save the world or destroy it.
  • Lady Land: Amazones.
  • Master of Disguise: The hero, after he learns the "Change" spell. He'll need to change himself into a girl in order to get into the aforementioned town of Amazones.
  • Mind Screw: "Wait, were Azteca and Draygon the same person, or were there minds linked somehow? And how does that work if Azteca was really a robot the whole time? And why was he a robot any damn way?! I'm so confused!"
  • La Résistance: Hero, Mesia, Zebu, Tornel, Asina, Kensu, Stom, and possibly Akahana. Whether Azteca was truly a member of the resistance is unclear due to his connection with Draygon, who also may have been his elaborate alter-ego.
  • One-Winged Angel: Draygon.
  • Point of No Return: Entering the Tower is a one-way ticket to the endgame.
  • Protagonist Without a Past
  • Psychic Link: The "Telepathy" spell allows you to speak directly with any of the four sages, regardless of where you are.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Stom (and arguably, Akahana)
  • Science Is Bad
  • Sdrawkcab Name: The Fruit of Repun reverses the "Nuper" status (that turns you into a monster incapable of attacking or using magic.)
    • Of course, niether Repun nor Nuper are actually, you know, things.
  • Shout-Out: The story opens in "the Windy Valley", which is populated by giant insects. "October 1, 1997, the end day" is a shout-out to Terminator.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: Mt. Sabre.
  • Sound of No Damage
  • Sword of Plot Advancement: Crystalis.
  • Tomato Surprise: In the Tower it is revealed that the Hero was one of the scientists who built the thing in the first place. Your job after awakening was to judge whether the remnants of humanity were worth saving and if the answer was no, to use the Tower to wipe them out. Being the Hero, you destroy the Tower instead.
  • Two Aliases One Character: Portoa's Queen and the Fortune Teller both appear, but not at the same time and keep referring you to the other alias. Eventually, the dialog will start looping, requiring the hero to double back and use the newly acquired paralysis skill.
  • Upgrade Artifact: There are magical orbs and bracelets that can enhance the magic of your swords, and will be required to access other areas in the game.
  • What Could Have Been: Back when SNK though the Neo Geo might make it as a console (and not just be used as a cheap arcade machine) there were plans to remake Crystalis for that platform.
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