[[quoteright:266:[[PimpedOutCape http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/degrees_of_a_pimped_out_cape_9292.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:266:[-A PimpedOutCape can be done in many ways, from simply edging it [[PrettyInMink with fur]][[note]]''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast''[[/note]] to covering most of it with [[GoldMakesEverythingShiny gold embroidery]].[[note]]''VideoGame/DynastyWarriors 7''[[/note]]-] ]]

A rarely stated, but fairly common, belief here is that some tropes are rigid, and that the only variation comes with PlayingWithATrope. Or some here think that most tropes are rigid, unless "Sliding Scale" is in the name. But it's not really true at all (also the reason we have Administrivia/TheSameButMore). This belief often manifests in examples as citing the trope name, but with emphasis added on a changed word.

Even in the most narrowly defined {{Sub Trope}}s, there is plenty of room for variation, even when playing straight. And there can even be degrees of how the trope is applied, which is certainly the reason we don't allow Administrivia/TheSameButMore.

Two of the most common variations for a trope are the scale, and the importance in the story. But there are quite a few other ways to allow for trope variations.

The only actual thing rigid about tropes is the cutoff between one trope and another, or at least that is what we are striving for. Even when it involves {{Super Trope}}s and {{Sub Trope}}s, or if there is [[SisterTrope overlap with another trope]], those tropes are still separate.

So the next time you think a trope is separate from another trope, make sure the line is clear. If it's not, you didn't make a mistake, other than underestimate how flexible tropes are.

Compare PlayingWithATrope, DownplayedTrope, ExaggeratedTrope.

Contrast SquarePegRoundTrope (when an example doesn't fit the trope no matter how you twist it around).
!!To best illustrate this concept, examples should be straight uses, with only some [[PlayingWithATrope playing with them]]
* AdultFear is about anything that a well-adjusted adult with common sense would be scared about. While children being in danger is a common source of this, examples don't always need to be about them; things like the threat of losing one's home (due to a fire, natural disaster, not being able to pay the rent, etc.), humans rights violations, domestic terrorism, [[EvilDebtCollector debt collectors]], and PoliceBrutality are all things that can happen in real everyday life.
* AllJustADream has quite a broad scope. It can be used for a single scene, entire episodes, entire seasons (''Series/{{Dallas}}''), or even [[MindScrew the entire series]] (''Series/StElsewhere''). It can be a regular dream (''Film/TheWizardOfOz''), a [[CuckoosNest psychotic delusion of innocence]] told by an UnreliableNarrator (''Film/TheCabinetOfDrCaligari'') or even a "simulation" (''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy''; 6th season, episodes 4th and 5th).
** ''Series/{{Newhart}}'' managed to make fun of this, ''and'' [[UpToEleven crank it up even further]] by claiming that series was the dream of a character (played by the same actor) in ''another series'' (namely ''Series/TheBobNewhartShow'').
* ButtMonkey means simply a character who things hardly ever work out for, and nothing more. There are people who ''refuse'' to apply it even where it fits, because they mistakenly believe that it is required to be PlayedForLaughs. There ''is'' a type of ButtMonkey that ''is'' required to be PlayedForLaughs--but that trope is TheChewToy.
* Many examples of DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything are about sexually suggestive things, but that's not a requirement; allegories for historical conflicts, contemporary conflicts, controversial topics or even just mundane unpleasantries are also legitimate examples.
* {{Fanservice}}, while primarily known for its sexual value, also encompasses the usage of EnsembleDarkhorse, PopularityPower, MemeAcknowledgement, [[SugarWiki/MomentOfAwesome Moments of Awesome]], etc. to appeal to the fanbase's sensibilities in equally exciting ways.
* GameGourmet is about variety of collectible or selectable food in video games. It is common for games under this trope to have too many different foodstuffs to count, but the current minimum stands at 10 (which is still only a guideline).
* The assumptions in a [[TheGreatPoliticsMessUp Great Politics Mess-Up]] don't necessarily have to involve the UsefulNotes/ColdWar; any dramatic change in the real-world political status quo is fair game. For example, if a work written in the 18th century is set in the 20th century and this fictitious 20th century still has the thirteen British colonies rather than an independent coast-to-coast union of states, it counts.
* In terms of MalevolentArchitecture, console {{Roleplaying Game}}s tend to have loads of enemies, but rarely any hazards in the buildings, save for the occasional lava floor. On the other hand, ''TabletopGame/TombOfHorrors'' is infamous for having loads of traps in every room.
* PlanetLooters don't necessarily have to target Earth, so examples where humans are looting other planets are still straight examples. The inversion would be if, say, one civilisation was selling its planet's resources to others.
* SexSells has a wide range, from just attractive people in a picture, to acts that just scream "[[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything DOES THIS REMIND YOU OF ANYTHING]]?"
* A work featuring a StuckAtTheAirportPlot need not take place at an actual airport. Any old bus or train station will do.
* ThatOneBoss, ThatOneLevel, and others listed on ThatOneIndex, need not be NintendoHard sections in otherwise easy games. They just need to be noticably hard''er'' than the rest of the game (or most of it).
* XanatosGambit and BatmanGambit are both about specific types of ingenious plans. The thing is, there is nothing saying they have to be of a certain scale. Using these plans could involve just getting a promotion from your boss, to [[TakeOverTheWorld world conquest]]. They also have nothing to do with being good or evil, despite their respective {{Trope Namer}}s; heroes can use Xanatos Gambits and villains can use Batman Gambits.