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[[quoteright:311:[[VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/HellsJudgementHPtoOne_4446.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:311:[[DissidiaFinalFantasy Absolute denial! End of existence...]]]]

This trope is for any of those attacks that ''appear'' to do a ridiculous amount of damage, but on closer inspection actually have the rather strange effect of reducing one (or more) party members down to their very last HitPoint instead of inflicting normal (possibly lethal) damage. Lesser versions may not leave the target with ''strictly'' 1 HP, but relative to the scale of damage typically dealt in these battles, the end result is the same -- regardless of your character's HP beforehand, you are now on the threshold of CriticalExistenceFailure.

So what happens if you already have only one HitPoint when struck by this attack? In most cases, that amazing psychedelic rainbow shockwave (or whatever) attack will have no effect whatsoever, or may be labelled an automatic "Miss". However, sometimes even this attack is obligated to inflict a minimum of ScratchDamage and will actually kill the character unless they heal themselves (even slightly) in the meantime.

Should you fall victim to these kinds of attacks, your safest action is simply to HealThyself the first chance you get ... or you can also use this chance to unleash a DesperationAttack of maximum power. But be very wary: Even ScratchDamage leads directly to a CriticalExistenceFailure.

Related to SlapOnTheWristNuke. [[UniversalPoison Poison]] [[StandardStatusEffects status effects]] often have this limitation.

In multiplayer games, suffering this can leave you open to CherryTapping.

Compare and contrast LastChanceHitPoint for cases where the ability to survive an attack with 1 HP is associated with the defender, not the attack itself.

----
!!Examples:

* The ''FinalFantasy'' series loves this trope.
** Beatrix has this as her FinishingMove in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIX''. When she executes it, the battle is over; from a story standpoint, the party is defeated as if it's a KO. She considers this her ultimate move and taunts/threatens the party with death after she uses it, which is very strange considering you can regen out of the critical status while the game fades to black, [[GameplayAndStorySegregation reducing the "impact" of the scene]].
** The final boss, [[GiantSpaceFleaFromNowhere Necron]], boasts his "Blue Shockwave" attack, which cuts the victim down to 1 HP.
** The final monster Zidane has to fight during the "You're Not Alone!" sequence has an attack that does this, which trigger's [[spoiler:Garnet/Dagger's]] entrance by casting Curaga on you ([[GameplayAndStorySegregation even if they haven't learnt it yet]]).
** The [[MegaManning Blue magic]] ''Death Claw'' allows Blue Mages to reduce monsters (and a few midbosses!) to single-digit hp with a successful casting. It stuns them too, leaving them unable to heal in preparation for the follow up.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'''s "Tornado" spell (and its upgraded counterpart, "Maelstrom", usable only by certain enemies) reduces its target(s)' HP to single digits, providing a much the same effect.
** ''[[VideoGame/FinalFantasyIVTheAfterYears Final Fantasy IV: The After Years]]'' loves to do this during boss fights. Adamantoise in Yang's Story is one. [[spoiler: It also happens at the end of The Lunarian's Story too, after the fight between Golbez/Fusoya and Zeromus's Malice.]]
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'': The spell "Fallen One" ("Heartless Angel" in the GBA translation) makes all of your warriors' HP fall to 1. When you meet Kefka at the very end of the game, this is his ''opening move.'' Other enemies besides Kefka can use it, but it usually involves using Relm's "Sketch"/"Control" command or one of Gau's rages.
** [[ThatOneBoss Holy Dragon]] 2 in the GBA edition of Final Fantasy VI can randomly CounterAttack with Heartless Angel, so if your timing is off, he could counter with it and immediately follow up with his normal turn consisting of a spell that hits the entire field.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'': Sephiroth can use "Heartless Angel" in his OneWingedAngel form at the end of the game. He even kept it for his BonusBoss fights in KingdomHearts (in which it also reduced your MP to 0, meaning you had to recover from it with items) and his playable appearance in ''DissidiaFinalFantasy'' (which mercifully only takes your ''Brave'' Points down to 1), so in a way, it's almost become his trademark attack. It's also used by him in ''VideoGame/CrisisCore'' during the Nibelheim event.
** Ultimecia's penultimate "Hell's Judgement" attack in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVIII'' causes the entire party's health to drop to one.
** During the second Laguna dream sequence in ''Final Fantasy VIII'', the last Esthar Soldier (Terminator) has a final attack called "Soul Crush" that will put Kiros and Ward down to 1 HP. Kiros and Ward are severely wounded in the following cutscene after the battle
** ''[[VideoGame/FinalFantasyX2 Final Fantasy X-2]]'' has Yojimbo and the Magus Sisters, the former being much more annoying as it also knocks the party's MP to one; you're pretty much screwed without an Alchemist
** Several examples in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXI'':
*** The game has [[http://wiki.ffxiclopedia.org/wiki/Hachiryu_Armor special event enemies]] that can bring down the players' HP to 1. It's not ''as'' horrible as you'd think, considering everyone gets capped to level one for the event.
*** Tonberries have an attack called "Throat Stab" that brings you down to 5% HP. Luckily, it has a very short range, so you can avoid it by walking away when he tries to use it. And if you ''do'' get hit with it, it resets your accumulated enmity, so unless you're alone the tonberry will attack someone else (most likely the mages healing you to full).
*** Certain Diremites also have Tarsal Slam, which is HP to 1, but like Throat Stab also comes with a hate reset.
** ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXIII'' has [[spoiler: Orphan]] who uses an attack called Merciless Judgement to bring your party's HP to 100 (relatively speaking, a critical amount). Easily fixed by using a paradigm with healers, but an instant kill if anyone is poisoned when he uses it.
** The final boss of ''VideoGame/LightningReturnsFinalFantasyXIII'' also uses the the Heartless Angel, but it's made much more manageable by the fact that you can see it coming in advance and guard it to prevent it from working.
** Several Final Fantasy games had Cactuars with two attacks: One would do 1 HP of damage, the other would do damage.
* In ''VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy'', hitting an enemy against the wall does bonus damage via "Wall Rush", but if the damage from the 'bonus' attack would KO the opponent (e.g., opponent has 1236 HP, damage dealt is 930 (actual attack) + 421 (Wall Rush) it brings them down to 1 instead.
* Queen Zeal's Life Shaver and Hallation attacks in ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger''.
** Great time for [[DesperationAttack Dino Tail and Frog Squash!]]
** Which can also be used by various mooks, such as Gargoyles on the Mountain of Woe.
** The Nus in Enhasa either do nothing, reduce you to 1, or reduce you ''by'' 1. They are nice enough to attack in turn, hitting (at worst) all three characters to reduce them to one, giving you time to heal, and then hitting you with the 1 HP damage.
** Krawlie, a boss that appears in the Abandoned Sewers in 2300 AD, may reduce a single character's HP to 1 with his Mash attack.
* ''[[VideoGame/{{Mother1}} Mother]]'': [[PsychicPowers PK]] [[AnIcePerson Freeze]] alpha and beta do increasing quantities of damage, but Freeze gamma is apparently so strong that it always drops the enemy's HP to a "critical status". [[UselessUsefulSpell If the beast isn't immune to that spell]].
** ''VideoGame/{{Mother 3}}'' has the New Years Eve Bomb, although it can only be used on [[BonusBoss one boss]]. [[spoiler:Said boss has so much HP that you need it anyway.]]
* ''[[VideoGame/MarioAndLuigiSuperstarSaga Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga]]'' does this with the FinalBoss. Both characters are reduced to 1 HP in an unavoidable attack, just in time for the boss to attack about four times (with new attacks you haven't seen before unless you've already died here) before you even get a chance to heal (barring extreme LevelGrinding or use of equipment with the First Strike effect). You can survive, however, by correctly timing ActionCommands to dodge the attacks.
* ''Franchise/{{Metroid}}'':
** The final boss of ''VideoGame/{{Metroid}} Fusion'' does this the first time she hits you.
** The titular Metroid in ''Super Metroid'' reduces Samus' energy to exactly 1 point, regardless of any health tanks she has. This is more of a plot point than any serious danger.
** Also in ''Super Metroid'', the final boss (Mother Brain) resorts to the Laser Brain Attack when dealt enough damage, draining three Energy Tanks (or six, if the player is not wearing the Varia Suit), about sixty-five Missiles, and Samus's entire supply of Super Missiles and Power Bombs. What qualifies it for this trope (given that the player can have up to nineteen Energy Tanks' worth of health by the end of the game) is that not only can it not be dodged, but she'll keep doing it until the player's health becomes low enough that one more Laser Brain Attack would be lethal; furthermore, if the player has more than one Energy Tank remaining, she'll rub in her imminent victory by launching weaker attacks at Samus (who at this point is too exhausted to move) until this is no longer the case. [[spoiler:Finally, she'll attempt to finish Samus off with one final Laser Brain Attack - at which point [[BigDamnHeroes the infant "Super Metroid" will rush in and save Samus's life]].]]
* In the ''VideoGame/HalfLife'' series, Poison Headcrabs can never kill the player, but only reduce their HP to 1 (which slowly regenerates to a few below the initial value). Because they tend to be located in chaotic scenes with lots of enemies that ''can'' kill the player, people would drop everything else and [[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill unload entire clips of ammo]] just to kill the tiny, scuttling, black ''thing'' somewhere in the room. Even the [[HellIsThatNoise sound effect]] by itself, outside of the game setting, can make most former players jump a mile.
* Cutscene attacks in ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWars'' do either 150%, 110%, 95%, 90%, 50% or (in one event in ''Alpha 3'') '''[[NoKillLikeOverkill 500]]'''% of the target's maximum HP. When it's the second or third on an enemy, it generally means that the boss is either going to make a dying speech or MotiveRant before blowing up anyway, or it's going to regenerate all its health so you can fight it for real. That one time where it was 500%? It involved a [[Anime/GaoGaiGar Goldion Crusher]] on Palparepa.
** And then there's the "Mercy" spirit command, which, if it works, makes any attack deal ''just enough'' damage to reduce the target's HP to 10 without killing them. It's useful for keeping high-level enemies alive so weaker characters can kill them for experience. It's also used as a minor plot point in ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsZ'', where [[GundamSeed Kira Yamato]] in his ThouShaltNotKill phase ''always'' has the Mercy effect.
** In the ''EndlessFrontier'' spinoff, Mercy is instead turned into a negative status effect that can only be gotten via one of the two Spirit commands that cast a random SC on either themselves or a random party member: the reason it's a negative status effect despite doing the exact same thing is because the whole point of the game is overkilling every enemy in overly elaborate ways and the only HP you ever need to worry about hitting 0 is your own.
** Similarily, [[GundamWing Heero Yuy's]] "I'll Kill You" command in the [=SD=] G Generation games for the NintendoDS increases his attack power at the cost of, ironically, not being able to kill.
* In ''MegaManBattleNetwork 3'', when you first fight Bass, his aura is impenetrable, and his attacks are impossible to avoid fully. He 'deletes' you, but you go back the out-of-battle screen unconscious and with 1 HP.
** Also invoked with the Undershirt chip and program (or wave ability in MegaManStarForce), which lets you retain 1 HP on an otherwise fatal hit.
* ''[[VideoGame/BanjoKazooie Banjo-Tooie]]'' has the [[GiantFootOfStomping Stomponadon]] and the [[SmashingHallwayTrapsOfDoom crushers]] in Grunty Industries; being crushed twice in a row results in death. Banjo's Snooze Pack move allows him to recover health in between repeatedly getting flattened to one honeycomb. One of [[ThatOneBoss Weldar's]] attacks, the ground pound, has the same effect as well.
* In ''VideoGame/SecretOfMana'', some chests would contain a "Death Trap". If you had full health, it would reduce your HP to one. If you didn't, [[OneHitKill instant death ensued]]. You very quickly learned to heal up before opening chests.
* Mabadi, a level 6 Priest Spell in ''VideoGame/{{Wizardry}}: Proving Grounds of The Mad Overlord''. The spell was very nice in helping kill those Murphy's Ghosts.
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'': Raid Boss Prince Malchezaar has Enfeeble that works this way, but it's only temporary damage. The trick is to avoid any further damage until the effect wears off. Of course, he casts an area-effect spell soon after, so the targets need to run away from him (and avoid the Infernals area damage). The effect also prevents any form of healing, so there is no easy way out. Mercifully, he won't use it on whoever is on top of his threat list. This would keep it from being a ''completely'' LuckBasedMission, but the above-mentioned infernals do a fine job of making it one on their own.
** Baron Ashbury in the revamped Shadowfang Keep has an ability called Asphyxiate, which stuns all players and reduces their HP to 1. Immediately after casting Asphyxiate he will cast Stay of Execution, an interruptable ability that heals both the players and himself for 10% of their maximum life every time second it ticks. Defeating him without letting him heal at all awards the Pardon Denied achievement.
** Chimaeron in Blackwing Descent has an interesting take on this. There's a friendly NPC that prevents any hit from killing anyone if their health is above 10,000, instead causing them to live with 1 health. This means that healers just have to keep everyone above 10,000 health for most of the fight, but this effect gets disabled periodically, and so massive healing is required to keep everyone alive through his caustic slimes.
** Some of the pets in the pet-battle {{minigame}} have an attack that explicitly has a version of this effect (that is, the attack does normal damage, but it will not reduce the opponent below one hit point). [[NotCompletelyUseless This has its uses]], since you capture pets by reducing them to low health ''without'' killing them (then following up with a "cage" attack). If your pet has the HPToOne attack, you can use him even if he's much higher level than the opponent, and not worry about an ill-timed critical hit killing the other guy.
* The Disembowel skill from ''BreathOfFire 3'' and 4. The enemies that use it tend to follow up with Target, an attack skill that never misses. [[TheComputerIsACheatingBastard Naturally]], it's a UselessUsefulSpell once you acquire it yourself (doubly so when you notice it's also CastFromHitPoints and reduces your max HP temporarily when used).
* Fox Face from ''ShadowHearts'' has his "!!!" attack. He's got another one that [[ThatOneBoss reduces you to one Sanity point]]. There is also the ability "Nightmare", which summons thousands of cockroaches (which crawl all over the screen, too).
* The Eclipse spell from the sixth ''FireEmblem'' game reduces the target's HP to one. In the seventh game it cuts the target's HP in half [[GameBreaker (unless it crits.)]] However, its base accuracy was so terribly low that it barely hit unless you were extremely unlucky.
** In the tenth game, Whispers gain the mastery skill Bane, which instantly reduces enemy HP to one. Of course, considering that the chances of you getting any Whispers other than Sothe, combined with the chances of [[CrutchCharacter Sothe turning out to be any good]], this is rather worthless.
*** Also your other characters will often have a mastery skill that is basically "ton of damage. If he manages to survive somehow, halve his speed for 5 turns." In fact, this is the case with most mastery skills. Most of these added effects tend to be completely irrelevant since most of the skills are overpowered and will seldom not kill everything. Of course, no generic enemies nor non-plot relevant bosses will ever have these skills (or any non-mastery skills, unless they're bosses) because they never [[spoiler: make it to the third tier]], for obvious reasons.
*** Bane is essentially just Lethality and Mercy in one skill. The former (only belonging to Volke) kills things instantly (unless they're counted as a boss character) and the latter (belonging to Elincia) makes it so that it's impossible to kill anyone since your character will stop doing damage after an enemy's hit one HP. Mercy has its uses, but the game puts it on Elincia after a certain point in the game, but ''doesn't tell you'', which can cause players to accidentally head out into battle with her being unable to kill things.
* Because ''Mercenaries 2'' is ridiculously easy, all exploding vehicles, airstrikes and other 'deadly' things will always jam your HP at 3, and give you about [[MercyInvincibility ten seconds of invulnerability]]. Sometimes the game [[GoodBadBugs totally jams at that point]], meaning your Magic Regenerative Health doesn't take it back up, and gunshots can't take it back down. Useful, if you don't mind the screen being completely red.
* ''MapleStory'' has Zakum, the original BigBad of the game (who devolved into the-boss-everyone-wants-to-fight-because-of-the-[[InfinityPlusOneSword Infinity-Plus-One-Hat]]-you-get-from-him thanks to further additions adding [[SortingAlgorithmOfEvil even bigger bads]], the most notable and recent example being [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Pink Bean/Pink Been/Pink Being]] in [[NoExportForYou Time Temple]]) -- who, in his final form (he looks more battle-damaged with each form, the last one being terribly close to rubble) regularly ABUSES an attack that drops both [[HitPoints HP]] and [[ManaMeter SP]] to 1.
* The final boss of ''VideoGame/TalesOfVesperia'', [[spoiler:Duke]], has a [[LimitBreak Mystic Arte]] called Big Bang that deals an absurd amount of damage to your entire party but can never reduce your HP below 1. It's not technically a HPToOne effect but at higher difficulty levels (and ''especially'' against his TrueFinalBoss form) it might as well be. (''Unless'', you happen to be playing the {{PS3}} UpdatedRerelease on Hard or Unknown mode, in which case the "LastChanceHitPoint" condition is thrown out of the window and you can ''really'' [[TotalPartyKill start worrying]]).
** The same is true of any boss with a Mystic Arte in ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphoniaDawnOfTheNewWorld''. How early in the battle you see a Mystic Arte is usually a good indicator of [[HopelessBossFight whether or not it's a fight you're supposed to win.]]
** ''VideoGame/TalesOfEternia'' has the BigBad Shizel play the trope straight with Eternal Finality.
** All enemy Mystic Artes in ''VideoGame/TalesOfTheAbyss'' reduce HP to one if they would otherwise kill the target. This explains how [[GameplayAndStorySegregation a certain character was able to survive a direct attack with the Bonus Boss's ultimate Mystic Arte.]]
* In ''VideoGame/{{Gothic}}'', [=NPC=]s who are not inherently hostile but whom you've managed to annoy will generally knock you out instead of killing you. This reduces you to one hit point.
* In ''VideoGame/MyWorldMyWay'', the "Weaken" spell does this, though you [[ContractualBossImmunity can't use the spell against bosses]].
* A variation is used in ''AdvanceWars'': CO Powers and missiles reduce units by a set amount, but won't inflict the killing blow.
* The Greater Demon's Death Wish attack in ''ValkyrieProfile''.
* Some monsters (and bosses) have this as an attack in ''VideoGame/GoldenSun''. Notably, all of the Golem-type enemies have a chance of this effect occurring from "Truncheon Fist". It's still pretty nasty otherwise.
* The [[BonusBoss Long-Dead King]] from RPGMaker game ''VideoGame/StandstillGirl'' has a skill that does this. However, strangely enough, you can guard against it, halving the damage you take.
* Epsilon in ''VideoGame/MegaManXCommandMission'' gains the ability to knock one of your characters down to one hit point after he [[TurnsRed powers up mid-fight]]. He also uses this ability to open the fight.
* ''DiscworldMUD'': Happens to any [=PC=] who decides to try stealing without a license in Ankh-Morpork, regardless whether or not the offender actually is a thief.
* ''VideoGame/DragonQuestMonsters'' had the spell Kamikaze, which cut the user's and target's HP to 1 if successful.
* A SequentialBoss from ''DigimonWorld3'' goes into his second form just to use an attack like this, then immediately turns into his third form.
** In [[DigimonWorld the original game]], attacks outside of battle can't get a Digimon's HP below 1.
* While the ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'' series has no actual HPToOne attacks, the Generation 2 move "False Swipe" is an ordinary attack (similar to "Scratch"), but features the added effect that it will never reduce the opponent to zero HP. It is useful primarily for weakening wild Pokémon so they can be more easily caught.
** The Focus Sash held item (and the Sturdy ability, in [[VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite Generation 5]]) allows the Pokémon holding it to turn almost any potential KO attack against it into one of these, as long as it was at full HP. It will be left at 1 HP if the attack would have otherwise caused fainting. The Focus Band held item can do the same thing no matter how much HP the Pokémon holding it has, but it has a low chance of activation.
** Endeavor reduces the opponent's HP to that of the user (if the opponent has higher HP, of course). Logically, Endeavor becomes this if its user has 1 HP left, which is its most common use.
* In the ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeon'' series, some moves that would normally cause the user to faint in the main games like Healing Wish and Memento instead lower the user's HP to 1.
* In ''Anime/YuGiOh5Ds'', this is literally the effect of Earthbound Immortal Wiraqocha Rasca; by skipping the battle phase, your opponent's Life Points become 1. This effect was removed from the real card, because an effect like that would be ridiculously broken in the real card game.
* ''NeverwinterNights'' used the Advanced Dungeons and Dragons version of Harm. As a cleric spell it wasn't resisted by the high spell resistance that most powerful enemies had, making it one of the most useful spells in the game.
* Lampshaded (like everything else) in ''[[Webcomic/{{Adventurers}} Adventurers!]]'' as one of Boss Khrima's attacks.
* ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIIINocturne'' has a version of this [[NintendoHard fitting with the spirit of the game]]: Aciel will do this to your entire party, then immediately follow it up with a regular attack before you get a turn. [[WeCannotGoOnWithoutYou Hope he doesn't target the main character.]]
** ''VideoGame/ShinMegamiTenseiIV'' also has an attack called Death's Door, which causes the opponent's HP to go to one if they have the Sick status effect. Also in the boss fight against [[spoiler: the White masquerading as Issachar, he]] will give you multiple [[HannibalLecture Hannibal Lectures]] throughout the fight and one of the consequences of falling into one of them is that Flynn's HP goes down to one and his SP to zero.
* ''VideoGame/LastScenario'' has several bosses who can do this: Thanatos, who does this to the entire party unless you have damage-reducing {{Status Buff}}s active, Durile, who targets a single character, and the Black King, whose attack hits the entire party, too.
* ''KingdomHearts'' has a few in addition to Sephiroth mentioned above.
** ''[[VideoGame/KingdomHeartsBirthBySleep Birth By Sleep]] Final Mix'' has BonusBoss No Heart, who has an attack that is basically DHA turned UpToEleven. It doesn't just drain your HP to one, it ''completely'' drains your focus gauge and '''even your command board'''. Thankfully, he doesn't use it often, and the attack itself is much easier to dodge than Sephiroth's.
** ''KingdomHearts3D'' does it again with the (this time required) boss [[spoiler:Anti Black Coat Nightmare]]. He extends a line of darkness towards you, and if it catches you, it drains your HP to one. Luckily, it's easy to dodge and if you do get caught, the health it drains from you is converted into HP orbs which are scattered all over the arena. You also have plenty of time to select a cure command while you're draining (though sometimes he just waits below you and finishes you off before you can use it...). However, the boss can also pick up the HP orbs, which restore a ''lot'' of his HP.
* In MabinogiFantasyLife, the Poison and Mirage Missile effects reduce HP to one, then do only enough damage to counteract {{Healing Factor}}s. Mirage Missile is ''very'' useful if you can follow up with an AreaOfEffect attack, since with its infectious nature it can turn a whole roomful of monsters into {{One Hitpoint Wonder}}s.
** Attacks that do more than a player's whole health bar sends them automatically into Deadly mode, [[LastChanceHitPoint one hit away from getting killed]].
*** However, Deadly actually means "you have negative HP but are still conscious"; you ''do'' have to heal all that damage to get back up to 1 and beyond. Also, you can take additional damage in Deadly status, make your Will save, and ''stay'' in Deadly status an indefinite number of times. It just gets progressively less likely.
* In ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'', the Croc-O-Style [[{{Nerf}} previous]] Item Set's bonus was listed in-game as "The user cannot be killed by headshots". What it didn't tell you is that it ''only'' prevents enough damage to stop you from dying, thus dropping your HPToOne (at which point another headshot CAN kill you). Players have found it's still more efficient to kill users with headshots rather than with [[ChargedAttack charged bodyshots]].
* In ''VideoGame/Rockman4MinusInfinity'' Mega Man can get a Shock Guard upgrade which turns the series' trademark SpikesOfDoom into these if he has more than 1 HP.
* In ''{{Runescape}}'', Nomad from the quest Nomad's Requiem gets a unique version of this attack. The attack always hits your maximum Life Points minus 10. In a subversion, however, the attack hits this amount regardless of your current HP - so unless your health is at (or above, through the use of potions) max, it will kill you. Some shields and armor can reduce the damage of the attack, but at the time of release this equipment was [[AdamSmithHatesYourGuts prohibitively expensive]].
* In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'', both the Nasty Soup and the Purple Chu have random properties, ranging from this trope to an unexpected full health recovery. Very risky indeed.
* In ''{{Starcraft}}'', the Devourer's Plague attack is an example of this: it is a powerful area attack but will never kill an enemy, only reduce their hit points to a minimum of 1. Subverted if you use it on Terran buildings, however, as if these are damaged into the red they automatically continue to deteriorate and eventually explode even if no further attack is made on them.
* In ''CityOfHeroes'', [[NotTheFallThatKillsYou falling cannot kill you]]. No matter from what height you fall, you will always have at least one hit point left. That said: you will survive the impact itself, but depending on your hit points left whatever is around you can and will off you pretty quick.
** This used to be used as a offensive PVP and PVE trick by [[GlassCannon Blasters]] who used to have an effect that their damage went up the less HP they had. They'd drop onto a team of Villians and pop off their strongest Area attack, often one-shotting a whole villain team. Defiance no longer works this way.
** Then there's The Magistrium trial, where the BigBad hits your raid league with a nuke, bringing everyone's HP to 1. This is his ''opening attack'', he only uses it once, and it's funny because most of his attacks can one-hit-kill most characters anyway. So in essence, a point-blank hit by a ''nuclear bomb'' is the ''least lethal'' thing that you have to worry about at this point. Yikes! (For clarification, by this point your character is an "Incarnate" who's half-way up the power ladder. You're fighting someone who's made it to the top of said ladder already)
* Of all games, ''{{Tekken}}'' has this move for ''Tekken Tag Tournament 2''. [[spoiler:Unknown]] has this move where she casts a vortex, and if you're caught in that vortex, a large hand rises up and slams you into the vortex, leaving you with 1 HP [[note]](Actually, it makes ''all'' your health red, which means it's recoverable upon tag out.)[[/note]] and automatically tagging in your partner. If you're really unlucky to be caught in this attack and your partner has low health, good luck trying to survive.
* The ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'' DLC ''Dead Money'', when played on hardcore mode, features an outdoor area with toxic gas that constantly drains your health down to 1HP. Given a dearth of healing items, this basically turns you into a OneHPWonder for the entire first half of the add-on.
* ''DefenseOfTheAncients'' has Doom and Poison Nova which technically do not do this but deal so much damage over time that they might as well. To counter this, finish the battle quickly and then heal.
* In ''Videogame/ParasiteEve'' these attacks: the crab's attack that involves grabbing and pinching you, Eve's red tentacle in Day 5, Ultimate Being's yellow shockwave, and Maya's Energy Shot, all put you down to 1 HP.
* In ''Videogame/PaperMarioTheThousandYearDoor'' the Item Trial Stew puts you down to only one heart point and zero flower points, but recovers all star power.
* ''SuperMarioRPG'' has some enemy attacks that are {{One Hit Kill}}s. However, if you defend against these attacks with the ActionCommand, they become this trope.

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Card Games ]]

* ''MagicTheGathering'' gives us several examples;
** Ali from Cairo, which turns an otherwise-fatal attack into this.
** Worship, which (while it fits with the right color) grants every creature this ability.
** Near-Death Experience has meant that if you are at one life during your upkeep, [[InstantWinCondition you win]]!
** If you want to inflict this on all players, the card Worldfire reduces all players to one life. (In addition to [[DeaderThanDead exiling]] their hand, graveyard and everything they have in play).
** The card Master of Cruelties is a straight example of this: If it attacks and the opponent doesn't (Or can't) block, they will immediately be reduced to 1 life.
* ''StarMunchkin'' gives us the Plot Device card. It sets the effective level of the munchkin currently in combat exactly 1 above or below that of the monster (depending on who uses it).
* In the ''[[TabletopGame/{{Pokemon}} Pokémon Trading Card Game]]'', [[http://bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/Raticate_%28Freeze_Bolt_47%29 Raticate's Super Fang]] recently gained this property. The move is Energy-intensive, however, and Raticate has [[GlassCannon very low HP]] (even compared to before any SequelEscalation happened).

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Tabletop RPG ]]

* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons''.
** Older editions of (Advanced) ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' had the Harm spell (reverse of Heal), which would strip the victim of all but 1d4 or so hit points, no save. It did the same thing in 3rd edition where, due to the revised casting, melee attack and HP system between 2nd and 3rd edition, it turned into a massive GameBreaker. The version in 3.5 inflicts damage based on caster level, but it still cannot reduce the victim's hp below 1.
** An article in Dragon magazine #36 gave AD&D stats for Conan. He could not be killed by poison: instead, he would be reduced to one HitPoint and fall unconscious.
** In 3.5 edition drowning set your health to zero (not "down to" zero; if your health was below zero at the time, it would actually go ''up'' to zero). This was the basis for one of the most [[GameBreaker broken]] characters of all time which used this, an infinite damage loop, a spell that prevented death (at least from hit point damage) for a specific period of time, combined with a whole host of spells that added benefits per x amount of damage you took. It was named the Omniscificer. What this ignored was that by the same technicality, getting out of the water doesn't stop you from drowning.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* The Eater of Dreams in ''CaptainSNES'' has the Living Nightmare attack, which reduces ''everyone's'' HP to one and heals himself for the damage dealt. He cruelly uses it to foist a no-win situation on Lucca.

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