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A tactical roleplaying game developed by Success and localized by Atlus. During an attack on the city of Bretwalde by an invading army from the Grand Meir Empire, Prince Serdic was mortally wounded, so he had his body double take his place and save the kingdom in his stead. The new "Serdic" leads the few remaining soldiers of Bretwalde in a campaign to recapture their homeland and to drive off the Grand Meir. Along the way, Serdic and his company manage to recruit a variety of different people to help him, including stars from other games such as Izuna from Izuna Legend of the Unemployed Ninja and Cotton from Fantastic Night Dreams Cotton .

Aside from being a legitimately difficult tactics game, it also stands out for its combat system. Whereas most other tactical RPGs require you to move next to an enemy and then attack, Rondo of Sword's method of attacking requires you to move through your enemies, where they attack upon contact. Running through your own allies sometimes give stat boosts depending on what abilities they have, and enemies have a chance of countering your attacks, thus stopping your advance and usually leaving your character in decidedly unfortunate situations.


Tropes present in the Rondo Of Swords series:

  • Artificial Human: Mephreyu used many of these as his mooks.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Otherwise this game would be more then just Nintendo Hard, it would be downright impossible. A good example is how the computer's ranged units must move into position first before attacking like magic users, whereas ranged units under your control can move and attack at the same time.
    • Take note that their archers have longer range than yours, but still you can just walk in range and shoot them in the face anyway since they can't counterattack.
    • Another fun AI Breaker is to put one character two squares inside the range of a melee foe, then put your other characters in every square said foe could end up in while attacking[1]. If he's really slow, he'll attempt to retreat, but otherwise, he'll move one square away from your nearest character, allowing all your nearby characters to carve him into little bits.
  • Back From the Dead: The real Serdic. For a while, anyway.
  • Bad Boss: Ernest, the captain of the 4th Division, is not only a terrible team player, but his OB is a powerful lightning storm that hits every single unit in the map except himself. How devastating it is to your party depends on how well your party can take a hit, and guess what 95% of Ernest's armies consists of?
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: Any high-ranking enemy with ZOC. Many of the times, they are even stronger then your own warriors, so you must rely on magic to slowly kill them. Oh, and some levels have these guys spawn infinitely.
  • But Your Wings Are Beautiful: Some other characters' comments on Alhambra's body (to start with, she does NOT like her animal features and wish them removed).
    • But when she heard Serdic compliment on them (as he was the first out of many later), she was so touched and amused (laughing that it was the first time someone said her ears were cute) that she decided to join him.
  • Captain Ersatz: The main character, Serdic/Altrius is a pretty obvious shout out to Fate/stay night's Saber. Both are unwillingly the King of their respective country, they have the EXACT same outfit, carries a holy blade, use their swords as a Wave Motion Gun, both are arguably One man army, although in Serdic's case he needs to level up a bit first, both are blonde, both have storyline branches that may lead them to release their Super-Powered Evil Side, and whereas Saber is really an obvious woman that everyone mistakes for a man, Serdic/Altrius is a boy that just happens to look really feminine.
    • Not to mention that the holy sword itself is uncannily similar to the Gran Centurio as far as its role in the plot goes...
  • Catgirl: Alhambra.
  • Corrupt Church: The main reason for all the conflicts in this game can pretty much be blamed by the church led genocide before the start of the game. Also, the description written in the profiles in every single clergy member enemy you fight against implies this.
  • Cute Witch: Cotton, and maybe Igraine
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Igraine and Gallahad
  • Death Is a Slap on The Wrist: While characters don't die permanently when you lose them in battle, they do end up with the "hurt" status where in the next stage, they end up with all their stats and level halved and unable to do side quests.
    • Unfortunately this could apply both ways, for instance, you need to 'kill' Ernest 3 times to make him stay down for good.
  • Dirty Old Man: Galahad
  • Disc One Nuke: Cotton, though how to find her is a challenge on its own right, though if you do, she can 1 hit kill those annoying Guardians (those Elite Mooks with recognizable BFS).
  • Dropped a Bridget On Him: Selmer. Margus just had to learn this AFTER he hit on him.
  • Elegant Gothic Lolita: Igraine
  • Evil Costume Switch: If you choose the Darker and Edgier path on stage 20.
  • Evil Twin: Elmer, Selmer's Jerkass twin brother, depending on how you play the game. He joins the bad guys, and leads the city's mages against you. Gameplay wise, he can and will kill his twin brother in one hit with his own lightning. But if you manage to get Selmer to talk to him, you can get him to join you. Do note that Elmer's attack range is much higher then Selmer's movement range.
  • Faceless Goons: Most of the enemies either wear face-concealing helmets, or somehow get their eyes completely covered by their hair or hat.
  • Five-Bad Band: Emperor Gauss and his four generals.
  • Foe-Tossing Charge: how did we not have the basis of the combat system for so long?
    • Can be avoided with the Zone Of Control skill or by counter-attacking.
      • And the above method can be made void with the Null-ZOC skill.
  • Fragile Speedster: Every single female character that isn't a spellcaster. Owl, Kay, Nagi, and Ansom as well. Subverted with Simon and Alberich who are also rather tough.
  • "Friend or Idol?" Decision: To kill or not to kill Marie? On one hand, purified Holy Sword. On the other, y'know, murder.
  • Gender Flip: When you first hear a mention of getting the pope as your ally, you'd expect that person to be an ugly old man like the real life one...guess again, the pope in this game is a cute little loli who isn't all that serious about her duties...although there IS an ugly old man who looks vaguely like the real life pope, he isn't though.
  • Gentleman Thief: Owl, who's the leader of a group of bandits known as the The Wise Bandits.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Every single scene with Rukia implies that she does more than thieving for a living...
  • Guest Fighter: Izuna, Shino and Cotton, as mentioned above.
  • Guide Dang It: Players found how to recruit Cotton either by reading a guide, or by accident as in trying to do a Self-Imposed Challenge on the 8th mission.
  • Handsome Lech: Margus seems like a Chivalrous Pervert at first, but it becomes apparent that "chivalrous" is giving him a bit too much credit.
  • I Owe You My Life: If you released Alberich in the hidden stage.
  • It's Personal: While it seems like Owl's decision to join up at first looks like due to having no better choice, his true motive was because he really have something personal (which we don't know) with the Red Lions, especially Clotho.
  • Jerkass: Elmer and Ernest have it by reputation.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Owl
  • Joke Character: Rukia isn't completely useless if you max out her critical hit rate, but there's not much you can do with her that can't be done better by Alhambra or Owl.
    • Her best use would be to have her run shopping or quest errands. She even has the skill Task Master for that.
  • Kamehame Hadoken: Serdic's Overbreak attack, combining this with Sword Beam.
  • Killed Off for Real: Any recruitable character that dies in battle without being recruited by you first. And also, Marie if you choose the 'bad' path.
  • Large Ham: most of the named characters (mooks don't have any voice).
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Ernest did this when he supposedly had to wait for Alberich to get ready.
  • Level Grinding: Can be done easily, since restarting a battle keeps your characters' levels as long as you don't get a Game Over.And you can even save, take different characters and grind them as well.
  • Lolicon: Igraine's guardian/grandfather, Gallahad is one creepy old man. He outright states that he's trying to get Igraine to call him "bigger brother".
    • Margus can be considered one too, but since he also flirts with many of the more mature women as well, it would be more accurate to say that he is ALSO a lolicon
  • Love Makes You Evil: After Mephreyu lost his best friend along with a good deal of his own kind during the genocide against Dark Magic users led by the Corrupt Church, he worked with the Grand Meir to attack Bretwalde, killed Prince Serdic, revived him as a slave, and tried to initiate The End of the World as We Know It.
  • Meganekko: Rukia
  • Mad Scientist: Arios, who just keep thinking about his researches, even in the middle of the battlefield!
  • Mana Shield: Mephreyu has it, though attacking him enough will render him OOM and unable to attack (unlike Ernest, he does not have a melee attack).
    • There is also the Skill called Mana Shield, but it requires a turn to use it.
  • My Master, Right or Wrong: Alberich questioned Gauss' intentions which made him tried to release Yumiluna and Simon, only to get interrupted and put behind bars by Ernest. Also Matthias, though he asked Alberich about his view and to make his decision, he chose to make a last stand anyway.
  • My Name Is Not Durwood: Yumiluna have problems remembering people, calling Alberich several different names (which were all wrong in one way or another) among others.
    • It's been implied that she doesn't really forget.
  • Named Weapons: Everything. Even the Elite Mooks get them.
  • Ninja: Shino and Izuna
  • Nintendo Hard: You know how in most games, tutorial missions are supposed to be designed to be ridiculously easy while explaining the game's mechanics? Well Rondo of Swords isn't like that. You may fail the tutorial stages multiple times if you are a beginner to tactics games. Other times it is because you need to get certain characters to talk to an enemy to recruit them Fire Emblem style, at times you need to do this with Squishy Wizard characters that are slow and most enemies can kill them in 1 hit.
  • No Name Given: It is stated at the beginning that the protagonist is an impostor, but on path A, it is later revealed that he could not even remember his own name (or perhaps have one to begin with), so Marie gave him a name.
  • Person of Mass Destruction: Any of the mages, but Arios in particular: after his class change, he leans a spell called "Megido Nova", the strongest Fire spell in the game. It is basically a nuke with him as ground zero. Cotton and Fairy Fire count too.
  • Petting Zoo People: Alhambra
  • Psycho for Hire: The Red Lions are bloodthirsty maniacs. How Clotho keep them in line is anybody's guess.
  • Save Scumming: you will need it, at least to level grind.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: Arios, one of his Idle Animation.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: Many, most notably, on the first stage...A challenge completed by killing several stages worth of enemies, including nearly every boss in the game (!), instead of merely running. It requires that Serdic kills enough knights to use his Overbreak.
  • The Ditz: Yumiluna
  • Timed Mission: Stage 18. You won't get a Game Over if you pass the 'Time Limit', but you will lose Yumiluna and Simon if you don't rescue them in time, and lose the chance of recruiting another 2 characters (Izuna and Alberich).
  • Tomato in the Mirror: why the main character did not have a name is because he is a homunculus of the real Serdic.
  • Unholy Holy Sword
  • Wave Motion Gun: Serdic's OB can be considered one. Also, Ansom's OB, Cotton's first spell, and Alberich's OB.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: If you choose B path, your army members will say so immediately. If you choose A, they will after finding out the main hero is not the real Serdic.
  • Younger Than They Look: In a shared conversation, Owl finds out that Ansom is 23 years of age, making him older than him. Ansom is equally surprised to learn the Gentleman Thief is only 21.

Notes

  1. If he moves 6 squares and is to the north, you put a character 5 squares south of him, then put three characters immediately west, east, and south of that character
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