Games With Tournament or Arena Arcs

At least part of the arena must be required for plot purposes, not simply side content.

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
Jade Empire: Special Edition
Jade Empire: Special Edition
Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition
Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition
Final Fantasy IX
Final Fantasy IX
Kingdom Hearts
Kingdom Hearts
Golden Sun
Golden Sun
Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VII Remake
Final Fantasy VII Remake
Final Fantasy VII Rebirth
Final Fantasy VII Rebirth
Ratchet: Deadlocked
Ratchet: Deadlocked
Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando
Ratchet & Clank: Going Commando
The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky
The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky
Armored Core: Master of Arena
Armored Core: Master of Arena
Dragon Quest IV
Dragon Quest IV
Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne
Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne
Live A Live
Live A Live
Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana
Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana
Super Paper Mario
Super Paper Mario
Gladius
Gladius
Xenogears
Xenogears
Octopath Traveler II
Octopath Traveler II
Mega Man Battle Network 4: Red Sun
Mega Man Battle Network 4: Red Sun
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Metal Arms: Glitch in the System
Metal Arms: Glitch in the System
Wo Yao Da
Wo Yao Da
Tekken
Tekken
Tekken 2
Tekken 2
Tekken 3
Tekken 3
Tekken 4
Tekken 4
Tekken 5
Tekken 5
Tekken 5
Tekken 5
Tekken 6
Tekken 6
Tekken 7
Tekken 7
Tekken 8
Tekken 8
Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name
Like a Dragon Gaiden: The Man Who Erased His Name
Dragon Quest II
Dragon Quest II
Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King
Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King
Breath of Fire II
Breath of Fire II
Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament
Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament
Lisa: The Painful - Definitive Edition
Lisa: The Painful - Definitive Edition
Sonic Riders
Sonic Riders
Pokémon Sword
Pokémon Sword
Pokémon Colosseum
Pokémon Colosseum
Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness
Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness
Summon Night: Swordcraft Story
Summon Night: Swordcraft Story
Persona 3: The Answer
Persona 3: The Answer
LEGO Racers
LEGO Racers
Street Fighter
Street Fighter
Street Fighter II
Street Fighter II
Radiata Stories
Radiata Stories
Radiant Historia
Radiant Historia
Breath of Fire III
Breath of Fire III
.Hack//G.U. Vol. 1: Rebirth
.Hack//G.U. Vol. 1: Rebirth
Custom Robo Arena
Custom Robo Arena
Battle Chef Brigade
Battle Chef Brigade
Unreal Tournament
Unreal Tournament
Mega Man Battle Network 3 White
Mega Man Battle Network 3 White
Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass
Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass
Octopath Traveler
Octopath Traveler
Guilty Gear
Guilty Gear
Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat 1
Mortal Kombat 1
Fatal Fury
Fatal Fury
Fatal Fury 2
Fatal Fury 2
Fatal Fury Special
Fatal Fury Special
The King of Fighters '97
The King of Fighters '97
Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII
Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII
Kingdom Hearts II
Kingdom Hearts II

39 Comments


23 days ago

ff7, remake, and rebirth

most ratchet games, but most notably going commando and deadlocked (the latter being just one big tournament)

23 days ago

There's a tournament arc in the first Trails in the Sky! I think it's pretty common in the Trails series, but that's the only one I've played and can confirm firsthand.

23 days ago

Self-parody moment but I gotta say it: arena progress, appropriately, is required for the story in Armored Core: Master of Arena.

23 days ago

Dragon Quest 4, SMT Nocturne, Live A Live

23 days ago

Would the forced gladiator fight in Ys Seven count?

23 days ago

Super Paper Mario and Xenogears!

23 days ago

Gladius takes place entirely in an arena. Great list idea!

23 days ago

Mega Man Battle Network 4

23 days ago

Cool theme!
Knights of the old Republic has a gladiator ring segment you have to take part in.
The entirety of Pyre is a fantasy sports league so not sure of it counts.
2nd Gen Pokemon has bug catching tournament, I think you have to participate once but it's been a long while.

23 days ago

Metal Arms Glitch in the system has a whole section where you are forced to fight in an arena.

23 days ago

There’s a few decisions I have to make about Pokémon and/or games that are entirely arenas but I’ve appreciated all the submissions I’ve gotten!

23 days ago

Magic Pengel and Dragon Quest Monsters might fit as well depending on how you decide the criteria. I could see them being a little too gray though since they're not exactly "arcs" (though the pacing is different from something like Pokemon for example)

23 days ago

FE awakening chapter 4. cool idea for a list

22 days ago

Wo Yao Da
Tekken 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8
Like A Dragon Gaiden
Dragon Quest II and VIII
The Witcher 3: Blood and Wine

Breath of Fire 2

22 days ago

Klonoa 2: Dream Champ Tournament (the whole plot)
Lisa: The Painful (the Russian Roulette sequence which you can repeat to higher tiers)
Sonic Riders (most of the plot)

22 days ago

Pokemon Sword and Shield: Most pokemon games have the elite four, but Sword and Shield is the only one with an explicit World Tournament in its main story.

22 days ago

Since Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku II adapts the Cell Saga, that technically includes a tournament / arena arc.

Summon Night: Swordcraft Story has a tournament arc as a central plot point.

Persona 3: FES has The Answer, where the main characters fighting in an Arena and having to beat the other main characters to get a special key is critical to the plot as a mini-arc.

Technically, any sports game with a playoff system in their Franchise / Career mode would fit this such as Madden or NBA games. But I'll note down LEGO Racers since while super basic, it has a story mode compared to the others.

Pokemon Colosseum specifically forces you to fight in a tournament (the Pyrite Cup) as part of the plot, and both it and Pokemon XD force you to fight in Mt. Battle at least once (which is more of an arena style deal).

The original Street Fighter's only mode is a tournament. Street Fighter II's Arcade (and thus story) mode is Bison setting up a tournament to try and brainwash the strongest fighter.

Radiata Stories begins with knight selection trials, which are a tournament / arena bit. You only get to fight in one battle but there's a tournament roster shown and it takes place IN an arena and everything. And is mentioned as a tournament in dialogue.

22 days ago

Radiant Historia has a Coliseum Arc

22 days ago

starting that 700 page gamefaqs thread i don’t remember the meme shadow of the colossus

21 days ago

- Mega Man Battle Network 3: A surprising amount of the early-to-midgame consists of progressive stages of an event called the N1 Grand Prix, intended to find the country's top NetBattler. Later in the game, MegaMan must find and defeat most of the Undernet's strongest fighters in order to obtain a program crucial for shutting down an incoming threat to the Internet and society at large.
- Jimmy and the Pulsating Mass: The King of Everchip stages a single-elimination tournament in an attempt to get rid of Jimmy, whom his evil chancellor loathes utterly. Jimmy, his mom, his uncle, and a lot of other characters are imprisoned and forced to participate.
- Custom Robo: Battle Revolution (subtitle optional, it's the Gamecube one) and Custom Robo: Arena : it would probably be easier explaining the parts of these games that are NOT tournament arcs
- .hack//G.U.: Volumes 1, 2, and 3 each have one; in all three it's because it's the most reliable way to get in contact with one or more significant characters that just so happen to be PVP champions.
- Octopath Traveler 1: One of Olberic's chapters involves a tournament in Victor's Hollow.
- Guilty Gear (but only the first one/The Missing Link)
- Pyre (Supergiant Games): At least, I assume the Rites are overall laid out in some kind of structure...? This one I might just be wrong about.

21 days ago

OG Mortal Kombat, MK9, and Mortal Kombat 1, every Fatal Fury and King of Fighters game.

21 days ago

Lightning Returns

21 days ago

Kingdom Hearts I and II

18 days ago

This comment was deleted

18 days ago

Street Fighter 6 has multiple instances
Bug fables has a small arena section that’s required for the story

18 days ago

I had no idea just how common this trope is... Awesome list!

18 days ago

Tales of Vesperia requires you to do a quick tournament in the Nordopolica coliseum in order to advance the plot.

18 days ago

- Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep
- Pokemon Battle Revolution (Stadium games as well I believe?)
- Yakuza 0
- Yakuza/Yakuza Kiwami
- Paper Mario TTYD Remake
- Star Ocean 2 and its remake


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