Annoying video game cliches list

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#1 Posted by drekula2 (1898 posts) -

Be sure to add yours to the list:

- The standard action video game cover (man holding a gun)

- Backtracking (collect exactly 3 of ____ in order to continue)

- The hypersexualization of women (a.k.a. exaggeratedly large breasts)

- The damsel in distress (rescuing the girl plots are rarely original)

- Quick-time events which are poorly or excessively used

- Average-at-best stealth sequences tacked in just to shallowly add variety

- Characters often swearing as a crutch to try to convey emotion (aka "you son of a b---h!!!")

- Characters who don't react at all when they first see someone die

#2 Posted by ReddestSkies (4087 posts) -

-List threads

#3 Posted by punkpunker (3320 posts) -

tv tropes has that covered

#4 Edited by Beagle050 (715 posts) -

Damsel in Distress - so unoriginal and lazy (this is already listed, though)

The guilt-ridden hero who is trying to get over his past, or the hero that lost his family

Blood on the screen when shot

The FPS enemies are Russian / World War 3 vs. Russia

America gets invaded

There's a nuke about to go off

All bad guys have an eye patch or are bald

Your blank slate RPG character starts in captivity or unconscious

#5 Posted by Lance2500 (680 posts) -
#6 Posted by The_Last_Ride (69831 posts) -

bad story to justify the game, i really hate that

#7 Edited by violian (1431 posts) -

The dude had everything and is at the top then gets betrayed or screwed by another character so he ends up having to re-start his way back up the ladder....*cough, cough* - Need For Speed franchise.

#8 Posted by TheMierArmy (5699 posts) -
  • convoy getting hit by an RPG.
  • the guy yelling "RPG"

#9 Edited by ZZoMBiE13 (22911 posts) -
  • "Oscar Mike"
  • Oh no, the terrorists of unspecifiedistan are attacking! And they've teamed up with the Russians!
  • Nathan Drake... just... all of it

That's all I got for now.

#10 Posted by muthsera666 (13271 posts) -

@drekula2 said:
- Characters often swearing as a crutch to try to convey emotion (aka "you son of a b---h!!!")

Used properly and/or in character, this isn't such a bad thing. Using adult language makes the characters more relatable in some instances. I realize that you stated "as a crutch", but there are people in reality that act in that manner as well, so the characterization and context are important as well.

#11 Edited by Lucky_Krystal (1730 posts) -

Big gruff military man with no emotion saves the world (mostly western games)

Teenager who is the chosen one saves the world with his group of meddling kids (mostly Japanese games)

Gratuitous and extreme violence, sex, or swearing that serves no purpose in the context of the game; its just there to be "mature and edgy"

Damsel in Distress

#12 Posted by JimmiCottam (106 posts) -

Escort Missions

Or even the opposite "Follow x without being spotted"

#13 Posted by iampenguin (223 posts) -

@drekula2 said:

Be sure to add yours to the list:

- The standard action video game cover (man holding a gun)

- Backtracking (collect exactly 3 of ____ in order to continue)

- The hypersexualization of women (a.k.a. exaggeratedly large breasts)

- The damsel in distress (rescuing the girl plots are rarely original)

- Quick-time events which are poorly or excessively used

- Average-at-best stealth sequences tacked in just to shallowly add variety

- Characters often swearing as a crutch to try to convey emotion (aka "you son of a b---h!!!")

- Characters who don't react at all when they first see someone die

"The hypersexualization of women (a.k.a. exaggeratedly large breasts" big breasts don't do anything for me so I really agree with that point.

How about main male characters that are buff, I just want a skinny angry kid with a gun in his hand.

#14 Posted by Ish_basic (3978 posts) -

  • "Oscar Mike"
  • Oh no, the terrorists of unspecifiedistan are attacking! And they've teamed up with the Russians!
  • Nathan Drake... just... all of it

That's all I got for now.

HBO had a series called Generation Kill about the war in Iraq and that was the first time I ever heard any pop culture piece (movie, game or otherwise) say Oscar Mike. But since that series, seems like every war game that has come out it's "Oscar Mike" every cut scene. The Call of Duty released just after Generation Kill was especially bad.

The cliché that's driving me nuts right now is in Japanese games, if the guy is wearing glasses, every time he talks he starts by using his middle finger to slide his glasses back up his nose. I think I was recently playing Revengeance and the guy just kept doing it...like 3 times within 10 seconds. Do they not make custom fit frames in Japan?

I also hate how every game anymore has some random, pointless item set to collect for a trophy/achievement.

#15 Posted by always_explicit (2665 posts) -

The stereotype of British people being either evil or eccentric.

Scars.

Seriously...scars. We get it your a battle hardened veteran with no fear, do you really need multiple scars. Or an extremely large one carved over your eye. Video games have the ability to strategically place these scars and colour them so they appear aged and less obnoxious. The reality is somebody with facial scarring probably doesnt look more rugged or manly. They look horrible. Its not a nice thing.

#16 Posted by drekula2 (1898 posts) -

Here are some more:

- The protagonist being lenient to enemies or sparing villains in cutscenes, yet has no problem mercilessly killing tons of people during the actual gameplay

- The villain being complacent, never trying to kill the protagonist who makes many efforts and if he does, he never checks if the hero is alive or not

- Characters who are excessively dramatized and don't behave at all like real people (aka, a villainous laugh)

- Enemies have your character backed in a corner and one of your friends comes to save the day. Not really a bad thing, but cliche as hell.

#17 Posted by Ryagan (484 posts) -

Want to know what I hate? Annoying creatures, and in some cases people, who are supposed to be "cute" and try to serve as comic relief. JRPGs are notorious for this cliche. These characters are neither "cute" nor "funny." Let this cliche end already!

Another cliche that needs to be done with from JRPGs is how the protagonist and his/her friends always try to tell off the final boss before fighting him/her. They've really got to stop doing that.

#18 Posted by spaceninja818 (420 posts) -

A barred gate wide enough to fit through, but the game still forces you to find the key to open it.

Water/Swimming levels, they always suck.

Escort dumb AI missions, everyone can agree on that.

QTE

Evil Russians, nukes, American hero, etc...

Cat-eared girls in Japanese games, I still don't get it...

Breasts big enough to save you from a fatal crash.

Fetch quests.

Stealth missions in non stealth games.

Escape burning building.

#19 Edited by OmitName (717 posts) -
  • insisting campy-ness as a mechanism for relating to the audience; or presuming that campy always means funny.
  • games or their characters that try too hard to be funny, or abreast of pop culture in any way. cringes from dated references are particularly distressing.
  • games, any manner of presentation for that matter, that hope to get away with being so bad that they are taken as good in the end. (tim and eric's awesome show great job. most [as] original content.) that is just not a respectable way of conducting anything. i hate that.
  • im not at all fond of always feeling, as the player, that im trying to get away with something. i havent experienced many modern games so i cant speak to that end, however, sneak to win got old quick. every last game for a very long time had you against every one. when you, as the player, failed, it was hard to take as if you werent up for it, instead it always suggested being cheated or busted doing something you shouldnt. winning means; confronting challenges and overcoming them, not; woo hoo, i didnt get in trouble that time. it might be difficult to make sense of; im not admonishing stealth games. fps and action games are far more guilty of what i mean.
  • it always gets on my nerves when developers throw in little half hearted bits to cover bases. i dont mean mini games. everyone loves mini games. mini games are the knees. i mean when there is a device in a game that is by itself, seems out of place, and feels like a cheap trick. things like that are always distracting.
  • and yes quick time events are not good. they are almost always overused.
#20 Edited by WinsteadVolve (391 posts) -

- 'You scratch my back and i'll scratch yours'.

#21 Posted by megaspiderweb09 (3686 posts) -

The biggest tropes in video games is that i have to kill everything, yawn. If we did a psycological profile of every gamers digital murdering habbits, we would be complete psycopaths

#22 Posted by drekula2 (1898 posts) -

Another cliche: Doors (or other devices) that only work after you kill an enemy.

Uncharted 3 is a prime example.

#23 Posted by blangenakker (2184 posts) -

Character walks slowly when talking

Have to wait for another character to open door or activate something all the time

Your character is knocked out to just continue the story

#24 Posted by muthsera666 (13271 posts) -

@drekula2 said:

Another cliche: Doors (or other devices) that only work after you kill an enemy.

Uncharted 3 is a prime example.

That, coupled with the obvious design on the floor that will trip the entrance of the enemy.

#25 Posted by contracts420 (1956 posts) -

The biggest tropes in video games is that i have to kill everything, yawn. If we did a psycological profile of every gamers digital murdering habbits, we would be complete psycopaths

THIS! Most of the issues brought up in this thread don't annoy me for the most part. It's the constant waves of enemies. I guess this is why I prefer Uncharted 3, it has less enemies than UC1 and 2. Naughty Dog has actually been cutting down on enemies in their games with UC3 and The Last Of Us, it's refreshing. Give me some action just don't overdo it.

#26 Edited by Jacanuk (3955 posts) -

@drekula2 said:

Be sure to add yours to the list:

- The standard action video game cover (man holding a gun)

- Backtracking (collect exactly 3 of ____ in order to continue)

- The hypersexualization of women (a.k.a. exaggeratedly large breasts)

- The damsel in distress (rescuing the girl plots are rarely original)

- Quick-time events which are poorly or excessively used

- Average-at-best stealth sequences tacked in just to shallowly add variety

- Characters often swearing as a crutch to try to convey emotion (aka "you son of a b---h!!!")

- Characters who don't react at all when they first see someone die

This list is a annoying cliche....

#27 Posted by King9999 (11835 posts) -

Regenerating health.

#28 Posted by muthsera666 (13271 posts) -

@King9999 said:

Regenerating health.

I have to disagree with that. Used properly, I think it's great. It can make the game move much more smoothly. When I lose health, I don't want to waste hours peeking around corners and taking long trips backwards to try to find healthpacks.

#29 Posted by King9999 (11835 posts) -

@King9999 said:

Regenerating health.

I have to disagree with that. Used properly, I think it's great. It can make the game move much more smoothly. When I lose health, I don't want to waste hours peeking around corners and taking long trips backwards to try to find healthpacks.


Regenerating health sticks out as something that kills immersion when a game is striving for realism. It can also cause the player to be somewhat careless with their actions. At least with non-regen health, there some tension.

#30 Posted by ZEYAAM898 (1921 posts) -

Boss that was trying to kill you seconds ago, stops to talk in a cutscene.

Bosses have huge glowing weak parts.

Boss and Protagonist are alike in a twisted way.

Merchants have a charm of making items 1000x more valuable.

NPCs don't give a fuck, even if you've saved their arse.

Poor protagonist meets the King right away.

Prophecies are NEVER wrong.

NPCs don't run out of ammo.

NPCs have infinite carry weight.

Will post more as they come. . .

#31 Posted by muthsera666 (13271 posts) -

@King9999 said:
@muthsera666 said:

@King9999 said:

Regenerating health.

I have to disagree with that. Used properly, I think it's great. It can make the game move much more smoothly. When I lose health, I don't want to waste hours peeking around corners and taking long trips backwards to try to find healthpacks.

Regenerating health sticks out as something that kills immersion when a game is striving for realism. It can also cause the player to be somewhat careless with their actions. At least with non-regen health, there some tension.

True, if the game is going for realism. But then again, if the game is going for realism, then you would pretty much be dead after one hit. Or at least severely diminished in abilities.