[[quoteright:350:[[RecycledInSpace http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Munchkin_games_1343.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:Munchkins are universal.[[note]]Not shown: Munchkin Zombies, Munchkin ''Webcomic/AxeCop'', Munchkin Conan, Munchkin Apocalypse, Munchkin Skullkickers, Munchkin ''Webcomic/PennyArcade'', Munchkin ''Pathfinder'', and Munchkin ''WebVideo/TheGuild''.[[/note]]]]

-> ''Kill the monsters. [[KleptomaniacHero Steal the treasure]]. [[ChronicBackstabbingDisorder Stab your buddy]].''

-> ''Admit it. You love it.''

You are in a dungeon. Also present in this dungeon are monsters and treasure. You have been sent on a holy quest to kill the monsters and steal the treasure. Unfortunately, everyone else in your party is trying to do the same thing.

''[[http://www.worldofmunchkin.com/ Munchkin]]'' is a card game series by [[http://www.sjgames.com/ Steve Jackson Games]]. The fundamental rules are simple and easy to learn, but the text on the cards regularly changes the rules. If you keep a sharp eye on what the rules say at this very moment, you will uncover situations where your half-Elf half-Halfling Barbarian Cleric can wield four weapons at once, send any monster he fights over to another player instead, and get the treasure from it anyway.

This is very [[{{Munchkin}} Munchkinly]]. Do it.

----
!!'''This card game provides examples of:'''

* ActuallyFourMooks: "3,872 Orcs" (which only counts as 1 monster), and "Ghoulfiends," 3 of whom are drawn, and referred to as "them."
** Also some "monsters" in ''Super Munchkin'' such as the "Wimpy Thugs" series.
* AllWomenLoveShoes: In ''Star Munchkin'', the Bionic Bimbo can be deterred from attacking you if you give her shoes. Indeed, she even pays you handsomely for the footwear item, with 3 Treasures. You can then fight her anyway.
* AlwaysChaoticEvil: Player characters. Players, too, when they stand to gain a level.
* AnAdventurerIsYou
* AttackOfTheMonsterAppendage: Squidzilla, The Big Ole Planet Eater Guy, The Unspeakably Awful Indescribable Horror and Big Foot. The Floating Nose and [[{{Pun}} The Shadow Nose]].
* BalefulPolymorph: The Pollymorph potion turns your opponent into a parrot. Nice when a "friend" sends a plutonium dragon after you.
* BeyondTheImpossible / FridgeLogic:
** Two of the cards that can be played to make combat difficult are [[LastOfHisKind Last of Its Race]] and And Its Clone. They can both be played on the same monster.
** Mate and Brood, both of which would be rather illogical to play on a monster that had been made Last Of Its Race. Munchkin Cthulhu also adds "...and its Spawn." Or Last Of Its Race and [[LukeIAmYourFather Is Your Father]]... Or just Is Your Father, period, given some of the monsters you can throw it on. Like a ''comfy chair''. Or the aforementioned 3,872 Orcs. All of them are your father.
** "Cheat With Both Hands" (the seventh expansion for the main game) is this trope in card game form. Along with the titular card (which lets you cheat for two items), there are cards which provide extra or even unlimited Races and Classes.
*** "Cheat With Both Hands" also added the even more outrageous "Cheat Like There's No Tomorrow" which, until the end of the combat it is played in, allows you to wield '''every single item either have in your hand or are carrying'''! Yes, that means you can have two weapons for at least a dozen hands equipped at the same time.
** The card called "Cheat" allows you to disregard all restrictions when attached to an item card. Depending on how loosely your group interprets the rules, this may lead to physically impossible things (such as wielding more weapons than you have hands).
** You can make a monster "Ancient" to significantly increase its difficulty, or make it "Baby" to decrease its difficulty. Play them both, and you're fighting an Ancient Baby.
** Clerics can resurrect a Level 1 Potted Plant, but another character can then immediately use a card to declare that now it was just an illusion of a potted plant, and was really the aforementioned 3,872 Orcs.
** Due to how the rules in Munchkin work, it is possible to lose levels quite fast. Especially with the Dungeons expansion, as one of the dungeons rules that EVERY player has their gender swapped and must be adressed by the gender-swapped version of their real-life name! If a player fails to do so once, they lose a level. Forget to do it a few times? Wave your chance of winning goodbye, unless you can make the other players screw up too.
* BilingualBonus: If you can read Tengwar, check out The Other Ring.
* BraggingRightsReward: As noted elsewhere, you normally have to kill a monster to gain the winning level except when you get the Divine Intervention card which allows you to gain a level (including the winning level) if you're a cleric. The card grants you the right to mock the other players mercilessly if you win the game this way.
* BreadEggsBreadedEggs: Monsters often have bonuses like "+ 2 against Elves, + 2 against Wizards, + 4 against Elf Wizards."
* BribingYourWayToVictory: For instance, The ''Wicked'' (a Variant of the standard munchkin die) Dice, which are actually used to track your CharacterLevel and not to generate a random number, come with instructions that say the holder of a die starts the game with a +1 CharacterLevel bonus.
** There are also level-up cards which notionally involve bribing the GM.
*** Notably "Bribe the GM with Food", a common sight in both this and other {{Role Playing Game}}s.
** And all of this is gleefully [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] and parodied, so much that it counts as {{Reconstruction}}.
** There was one special release of a cookie which, upon eating it, would resurrect your character and undo a death. Everything that the studio has created has a bonus when Munchkin is played.
** In the tabletop version, buying the ''Dungeonmaster's Guide'' for your DM earns you 10,000 xp, enough to start 10 levels higher than the rest of the party.
* ButterFace: The Geisha Gorgon.
* CatGirl: A monster in Munchkin 2 and a playable race in Star Munchkin.
* ChainsawGood: The Chainsaw of Bloody Dismemberment, which is a fairly decent weapon.
* CthulhuMythos: It's got an entire deck dedicated to it.
* CharacterLevel: The objective of the game is to get to Level 10, or 20 if you are playing ''Epic Munchkin''. There are no ExperiencePoints, though; beating one monster usually gets you one level.
** Go Up A Level cards are also a staple part of the game. Selling items worth 1000 gold also gives you a level, but you don't get change. Note that players CANNOT attain a winning level by selling or Go Up A Level cards. They must kill a monster or have a card that specifically says that it can grant the winning level.
** If someone is killed by The Great Cthulu, all ''other'' players get to go up a level to mock them.
** Divine Intervention is a particularly nice card for Clerics, as it lets them go up a level, and if that level is the winning level, they get to mercilessly mock the other players.
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: Half the fun of the game boils down to this. There's a reason the tagline's third part reads "Stab Your Buddy". A fair chunk of the cards serve no purpose except to screw with other players.
** Cards that give one-time bonuses to combat are common. Cards that give bonuses to one ''specific'' side are rare. Help or hinder, the choice is yours.
* CombatMedic: Clerics don't seem to spend much time [[ThePiratesWhoDontDoAnything actually healing anything]] (although they can resurrect dead cards, sort of).
* {{Crossover}}:
** With ''WebComic/AxeCop''. Given how the heroes act in that series, [[http://www.sjgames.com/ill/a/2011-03-11 this was inevitable.]]
** Munchkin Cthulhu had 3 expansions and a line of [[http://www.worldofmunchkin.com/toys/chibithulhu/ plush toys.]]
** There is also a booster pack and a deck based on ''Franchise/ConanTheBarbarian'', and a deck (with expansion) modeled after ''TabletopGame/{{Pathfinder}}''. An ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'' deck is currently in the works.
** The Unspeakably Awful Indescribable Horror in the standard deck may also be a Lovecraft reference.
* CuteIsEvil - it's not a fluffy kitty, it's the set's nastiest, most powerful monster. Called 'The Evil'.
** Also, the My Little Cthulhu doll, which makes it impossible to avoid [[SecretCircleOfSecrets Joining The Cult]]
** And the Perfectly Normal Bunny, which can become [[Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail "That Bunny"]] due to a dice roll.
** The Chibithulhu plushie subverts this, as it can be used in-game to not only get into the Cult, but free yourself from it as well.
* DeaderThanDead: Cards that remove other cards or enemies from the game entirely (often in hilarious ways) are par for the course in any expansion or version.
* DeadMansHand: A curse card that forces you to discard your whole hand.
* DeathIsASlapOnTheWrist: A player who dies keeps his Class, Race, and Level, instead only losing all of his other cards. He revives at the start of his next turn and even gets a new starting hand of eight cards.
** However, depending on how the game is going, this can be a variation on ContinuingIsPainful: levels can pale in comparison to item bonuses. If you have 9 levels, but +25 from items (and also an item that renders you immune to any and all curses, reflecting them on the rest of the party instead), death is severely crippling.
* DeusExMachina: The Divine Intervention card.
** Not to mention [[IncrediblyLamePun Deus Ex Machinegun]].
* DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu: ''Munchkin Cthulhu'', ''Star Munchkin'', and ''Munchkin Apocalypse'' all have the trope namer as a level-20 monster.
** Made even more humorous when the outcome of the battles inevitably rely on which player has the best one-shot items.
* DoomyDoomsOfDoom: "Of Doom" is an Equipment Modifier, there's the Duck of Doom, and a piece of equipment in Munchkin Cthulhu is the Sushi Knife of Doom. Yes, this means that if you play both versions together you may end up with the [[DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment Sushi Knife of Doom...Of Doom!]]
* DuelBoss:
** The Gazeboo is treated as one (even though its only level 8). Players must face the Gazebo alone, but said other players can still play enhancers and one shots for either side.
** The Lich in ''Adventure Time'' is a more traditional version. Not only must Players face the Lich alone, but every other player is forbiden from interferring with combat in any way. No enchancers, no one shots, nothing.
* DumpStat: Space Munchkin introduces Stat X, a mystery stat in addition to the traditional six stats. Though the joke is to treat this like a default dump stat, the Gamemaster is also encouraged to make Stat X somehow pay off if one of the players puts his best score in it anyway.
* DungeonCrawling: There's no actual dungeon map, but the game assumes that you're in one.
** For a similar game with a dungeon map, there's the spinoff MunchkinQuest.
* EscapeBattleTechnique: The game has several cards that can work this way; however, many of them can also be used to force your opponents to escape from battles they're actually capable of winning, which is often the preferable option.
* Every10000Points: Selling items of (at least) 1000 Gold Pieces gets you a Level. You can sell for multiple levels, but you can't sell to get to level 10 (or, in Epic Munchkin, levels 19 and 20).
* EverythingsBetterWithSamurai: ''Munchkin Fu''
** BearsAreBadNews - the Over Bear and Evil Ted
** InstantAwesomeJustAddNinja
** InstantAwesomeJustAddDragons: Munchkin Dragons features several.
** EverythingsEvenWorseWithSharks - ''Munchkin Booty'' has sharks. Whenever any combat includes a shark, anyone else can add another shark without a wandering monster card. ''Star Munchkin'' also has the [[PunnyName Star]][[IncrediblyLamePun fish]].
** EverythingsDeaderWithZombies - ''Munchkin Zombies'' is ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin.
* EvilIsOneBigHappyFamily: Cultists from ''Munchkin Cthulhu'' gain larger bonuses the more cultists are on play.
* EvilLawyerJoke: Lawyers won't attack Thieves because of professional courtesy. Also, they count as sharks.
* ExactWords: Let's put it this way: This game had to have errata added to clarify that, yes, the bad stuff 'you are roasted and eaten' means 'you are dead'. The game's played by {{Munchkin}}s, what else do you think they're going to do about rules they don't like?
** The infamous "Bad Stuff" for Squidzilla (probably as a subtle reference to the above [[RulesLawyer Lawyering]]) reads ''"You are grabbed, slimed, crushed, and gobbled. You are dead, dead, dead. Any questions?"'' And ''then'' [[RhetoricalQuestionBlunder they had to clarify]] [[UpToEleven that you didn't die three times because of that text.]]
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: The Cheat card. And the Level-Up card. And the Curse/Trap card. And.. well... you get the point.
** In short, every card in the entire game does exactly what it says on the tin. This is even stated in the rules. And if a card would break the rules or some rules set by another card, the new card overwrites those! A lot of those cards, though, come with the added benefit of being incredibly vague, which leads to some less than intended uses for certain cards (such as forcing another player to go up a level during combat to prevent them from escaping from a powerful enemy that'll have them for breakfast).
* FateWorseThanDeath: since DeathIsCheap, replacing the dead's hand and items with eight random new cards, a fair few monsters have Bad Stuff even worse. King Tut forces the discard of everything without the replenishing hand, and the Wight Brothers reduce the player's level to 1.
** On the other hand, some Bad Stuff has no in-game effect, but can be terrible regardless. If you lose to the level 1 Goldfish, for example, the Bad Stuff is that "all the other players get to mock you". [[EpicFail Because you somehow lost to a fish in a bowl]].
** The worst perhaps in Chairman Mao, whose bad stuff not only kills the character but inflicts a HumiliationConga on the player.
* FighterMageThief
* FungusHumongous: What you get if you play the "Humongous" card on the "Fungus" monster. "Don't truffle with the Humongous Fungus!"
** To elaborate, the "Humongous" card increases a monster's level by 10. The fungus is a Level 5 Monster that states that, should it become humongous, gains 25 levels instead of 10. "Do not truffle" indeed.
* GagNose: the Floating Nose and its shadow.
* GenderBender: The "Change Sex" traps. There's also a "[[FreudianSlip Freudian Slipper]]" that lets you alternate between genders, but if you lose it and you're stuck with the wrong gender, then you're at a disadvantage.
** And there are Merch T-shirts that while worn, define your character's sex (which normally starts out as your own). People have been known to layer these.
** Averted with B-Mo from Adventure Time. If you play as him, you ingore anything that is gender relatede.
* GoddamnedBats: Invoked, adding Bat type enemies into a fight already including one is a free action in Munchkin Bites. With some nasty luck, that level 2 Bat monster just became a horde of bats, combined level 29. Bat Masterson from The Good, The Bad, and The Munchkin counts, by the way. Undead in many versions, Hong Kong in ''Munchkin Fu'', 'Goths in ''Munchkin Cthulhu'', Santas in ''Munchkin Axe Cop'' and Holiday Munchkin, Goblins in ''Pathfinder Munchkin'', Sharks in ''Munchkin Booty'' (which, naturally, includes [[AmoralAttorney the lawyer]] and [[http://www.worldofmunchkin.com/sharks/ similar professions]] ), Dragons from ''Munchkin Dragons'' (which includes creatures with Dragon, Serpent, or Wyrm in their nanes), and Demons from ''Adventure Time'' work the same way.
* HappyFunBall: The "Duck of Doom".
* HaveANiceDeath: the "Bad Stuff" on some monster cards
* HouseRules: Inevitable, considering that "Argue about the rules" is actually in the rules.
** It is also stated in the rules that if any player, at any time has any questions or disagrees regarding the rules, the game stops until everyone has come to an agreement. The DM, AKA the one who owns the cards, has the final word in any discussion.
* HybridPower: This happens whenever a player uses Half-Breed with a single race card he gets bonuses against anyone that race card gives bonuses against, but doesn't take penalties when fighting monsters who have an advantage over that race.
* IKnowKungFaux: Parodied in ''Munchkin Fu,'' with techniques like Drunken Monkey Kung Fu, Fee Fi Fo Fu, and Stomach Fu.
* IncrediblyLamePun: Most of the cards. Most notably "The Punster" from ''Super Munchkin'', who's stated as being "just a card. Ha ha. '''Kill him right now'''."
* InfantImmortality: In Munchkin Apocalypse, Kids replace "Death" result with "Lose a level".
* InfinityPlusOneSword: Most notable in ''Star Munchkin'', where you can stack up anything with its name ending with '-aser'. This can lead to a plus-''24'' [[CoolGun Laser-Dazer-Raser-Maser-Schmaser-Bobaser-Bananafanafofaser-Laser]][[note]]Wot, no Memymomaser?[[/note]] if you're lucky. This is strong enough to beat everything.
** And of course by mixing sets, the former might also become, just to name a few weapon bonuses, a "My Pappy's Old", "Blacker Than Black", "Gold-Plated" LDRMSBBL "...of Doom", "With Spiky Bits". Possibly even doubling its bonus.
** It is, however, possible to obtain the "Antimatter" trap, either via the initial draw or Looting The Room, and then to use said trap to turn someone's stacked-laser weapon into an un-droppable [[InvertedTrope Negative Infinity Minus One Sword]]. (The combined laser [[CripplingOverSpecialization counts as a single two-handed "complex" item]], so it works.) The unfortunate person/Munchkin on the receiving end is [[FateWorseThanDeath pretty much crippled as a result]].
** The true InfinityPlusOneSword is the PlotDevice from Super Munchkin. When played, it says "You are now winning the combat by 1, no matter how much you were losing by before." If, in theory, you were losing by infinity, this would actually provide a literal Infinity Plus One bonus. (Of course, people can still play more cards afterwards to make you lose anyways)
* InstantRoast: The monster "Giant Angry Chicken" is worth one extra level if it is defeated by flame. Yummy fried chicken!
* JapaneseRanguage: The "Engrish Transrate Plobrem" in Munchkin Fu.
* {{Kneecapping}}: The card game gives us the Hammer of Kneecapping, usable only by dwarves.
* LoadsAndLoadsOfRules: More rules get added every deck. There's even a rule lampshading this.
--> "When the cards disagree with the rules, follow the cards. Any other disputes should be settled by loud arguments among the players, with the owner of the game having the last word."
* LostForever: THE COOOOOOKIEEEEEE..., a special Munchkin cookie which cannot be re-purchased and must ''actually'' be eaten, for its bonus to apply.
* LowLevelAdvantage: Some of the more powerful monsters will not chase characters below a certain level, allowing them to automatically run away. The lowest level player will also receive everyone else's extra cards as Charity.
* LuckManipulationMechanic: The ''Munchkin'' card game has several cards and extra collectibles that allow manipulating the dice.
* MagicKnight, and any other cross-class you'd care to name, if you have a Super Munchkin card
* ManipulativeBastard: The best players are always these. Examples of Munchkin bastardry include: "protection rackets" in which a player prevents another player from being able to fight a monster, then offers to sell them defensive cards for a high price; lying to newbies about what their cards do/are worth; and asking a player to help you gang up on another, only to backstab them later.
* MicroMonarchy: Parodied on the "Ruler of A Small European Country" card, which shows the character standing in a "country" about one foot square.
* MindControlMusic: The Bard's Enthrall ability, which can let him force an ally to help him in combat for no reward.
** Musicians from ''Adventure Time'' hae a similar power, but it only works on players of the oppisite sex of the user. Unlike the Bard, this power is ganurted to work if you use it.
* MetaGame: Most of the gameplay is metagaming. You could even say that the metagame ''is'' the game.
* MooksAteMyEquipment
* MoreDakka: ''The Good, The Bad, and the Munchkin'' has a modifier card called Infinite Ammo, that gives +2 to a one-handed weapon that uses bullets, +3 to a two-handed weapon that uses bullets. There's also a +5 Gatling Gun. Combine the two for days of fun (and bullets)!
* {{Munchkin}}: *ahem*
* {{Nerf}}: The Loaded Dice card originally let players ignore one die roll of their choice and just call the number they wanted the roll to be. This being ''Munchkin'', players quickly noticed that they could call ''any'' number, and started using Loaded Dice to make die rolls come up as ten million, or negative thirty thousand, or any number of truly ludicrous results. Combined with other cards that keyed off of dice rolls, the game was soon being broken in new and inventive ways, and a ruling was handed down that Loaded Dice card allows you to change the face of the physical die that was rolled.
* NinjaPirateZombieRobot: Half the fun of the game is trying to make your character as awesomely ridiculous as possible.
** Half-Breed and Super Munchkin cards deliberately invoke this trope, letting you combine races and classes respectively. Combining different themed decks increases it. Incidentally, with the right combination of sets and cards, you can be a Ninja Pirate Zombie Cyborg.
* NotCheatingUnlessYouGetCaught: Subverted with the Cheat cards, and the Mixer set card "Cheat Like There's No Tomorrow", which lets you do [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin just that]] for one turn.
* NotTheIntendedUse: Using "go up a level" cards on your opponents to force them to fight monsters. Among many others.
--> '''Question''': Can we use "Go Up A Level" cards on other players to make them fight a monster that would otherwise ignore them?\\
'''Answer''': We want to say no, but that's just such a Munchkin thing to do that we have to allow it.
* OneCurseLimit: Very averted. The rules state that curses (or traps) may be played at any time. A player can get a pile of curses at once, but then, driving your opponents to tears is a viable strategy if it makes you win...
* OurWerebeastsAreDifferent: Includes werepenguin, a werehamster and a weremuskrat. They are all oversized and sharp-toothed - even the penguin has fangs.
* PinataEnemy: The Pinata is a measly level 3 and gives a treasure to every party member when killed.
* PrehensileTail: ''Star Munchkin's'' [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Tailgun]], only usable by Felines, depicts one such Feline curling up a fairly normal-looking gun in one.
** In addition, the ''Super Munchkin'' deck offers a pair of [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Prehensile Pigtails,]] which give the player two extra hands.
* PunnyName: Most cards.
** An entire ''class'' has a punny name. In Munchkin Bites, "mummies" are a combination of the regular {{Mummy}} monster and "mummy" as in mother. One of their abilities is even called Clean Your Room.
* PVPBalanced: While being a Monster Whacker will penalize you against monsters level 16+, none of the races or classes will really make you much worse at killing stuff, and no other race or class has any penalties at all, after a revision.
* RealLifeWritesThePlot: Many cards vary by something that applies to you in real life. Your character's sex is ''always'' your own until a card changes it, and there are cards like the Tommy Gun that give a bigger bonus based on your name. One set has some cards that give bigger advantages to members of the military.
** Actually, there is one case where your character's gender will not be your own at the start - if you are wearing a ''Munchkin'' t-shirt (yes, they do make them, and they can be made into some of the most powerful swag), your character starts off as the gender of the munchkin on the shirt, not yours.
** While most of ''Munchkin Zombie'' has art by John Kovalic, the card "Meals on Wheels" is done by a different artist. Kovalic refused to do the card as he had recently become a father.[[note]]If you still don't get it: The card depicts a pair of baby carriages, with a hungry zombie nearby.[[/note]]
** Some cards vary in effect based on what day of the week you're playing. Some cards have all of the above conditions applied to them. And then there is "Morning Star" and "Night Star", which grant a slightly bigger bonus, if you're playing at a certain time of day!
** The Pathfinder set has a card that gives a bonus to the monster if the player has a laptop, tablet, or smartphone on the table.
** Legends has a monster, Bloody Mary, that gets a bonus if there is a mirror on the table.
* RecycledINSPACE: ''Star Munchkin'', naturally, even spoofing it in its subtitle: "Kill the monsters. Steal the treasure. Stab your buddy... IN SPACE!". Other expansions are recycled in various other settings.
* RoamingEnemy: You draw monsters from a deck, and in some circumstances you can sic them on other players.
* RubberForeheadAliens: A racial option in Space Munchkin which acts as a catch all for the entire trope. You get to pick your one inhuman physical feature, the [[PlanetOfHats hat your planet wears]] and the one concept from human culture your race doesn't have a concept for (loyalty, dignity, hygiene, etc).
* RunningGag: There's a variant on "Everyone starts as a level 1 human with [[IncrediblyLamePun no class]]" in the game set-up portion of every version's rules. Later editions started lampshading the hell out of this.
** "You have no class and no [[FooFu style]]."
** In later sets: "Everyone starts as a Level 1 character with no class. (We never get tired of that joke.)"
** Everyone starts as a Level 1 zombie with no Mojo. (This is a zombie movie, so nobody has any class.)
** The same pun on class is also used as an actual ability in ''Munchkin Impossible.'' "[[TuxedoAndMartini British spies]] ''always'' have class. If you have this Accent and no Class card, you count as a Playboy."
* ScaledUp: Munchkin Conan has the monster modifier "...That Turns Into A Giant Snake." It can actually be played on a monster that's already a giant snake, because it turns into a ''different'' giant snake.
** Your Feet Are Dragon turns your feet into that of a Dragon. They make it harder to run away but provide a heftly +4 bonus. You can even get rid of them to run from a Dragon.
* ScrewYouElves: Never accept help from an Elf. (They get a level when they help you kill a monster.)
* SesquipedalianLoquaciousness: A RunningGag of Munchkin Cthulhu is modifier cards with long esoteric words as names, based on the SignatureStyle of H. P. Lovecraft. The illustrations all accurately convey what the word means; on "Mephitic" the monster has stink lines coming from it and on "Batrachian" it's a big frog. (Which also makes it ShapedLikeItself; of course ''a frog'' is frog-like.)
* ShaggyDogStory: Fights can sometimes develop into this, especially if there are many players with extended card holding rights. Say you've encountered a Plutonium Dragon and its Evil Twin, facing painful death should you fail to beat them or run away. After numerous bonuses and anti-bonuses have been played on the monsters, the dragon's Baby Clone, and its Mommy, have been introduced to the fight, multiple Powers and one-shot items have been used to help or hinder you, several different methods of backstabbing have been employed, lengthy negotiations of teaming up have been had, and you're ready to reap your whopping eight levels and twenty-five treasures... Some asshat plays a few cards, leaving you without any levels or treasure, and everyone many cards poorer. Which is, of course, very munchkinly indeed.
* ShoutOut: All but made of them. Some of the more obvious ones are:
** ''Star Munchkin'' has two of the item 'Time Warp'. [[Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow Guess what the pictures are doing]].
** ''Munchkin Cthulhu'' has the [[LandDownUnder Ozathoth]], and the Song of Madness [[spoiler:''Waltzing Matilda'']].
** ''"G'day, mortal!"''
** "O R'lyeh?" with an owl and "Ia R'lyeh".
** [[JudgeDredd Judge Fredd]].
** The "Vampire Hunter" in ''Munchkin Bites'' is a [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer blond girl]] in a [[IconicItem strangely familiar jacket]].
** A "Bowie Knife" has the word "[[DavidBowie Ziggy]]" written on it.
** "You must fight a Rabbit! However, it's ''that'' rabbit, from ''[[Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail that]]'' [[Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail movie]]. And his picture is no one else than [[Webcomic/SluggyFreelance Bun-bun]].
** Munchkin is illustrated by John Kovalic. So, it's a perfectly normal thing that the [=PCs=] sighted include [[DorkTower Matt, Carson, Ken and Igor.]] ''DorkTower'' throws in a reverse ShoutOut [[http://www.dorktower.com/2006/11/03/comics-archive-853/ here.]]
** [[{{Pokemon}} Pukachu, I]]--''(VomitIndiscretionShot)--ew...''
** The Froggoth from ''Munchkin Cthulhu'' causes you to suffer [[IrregularWebcomic Death of Choking On A Giant Frog]].
** The description of the monster Filthy Geats reads "Filthy Geats ain't got no rhythm" and the Bad Stuff starts "Now you're never gonna dance again."
** One of the expansions to ''Star Munchkin'' contains a plasma gun. The picture shows the item in question being carried by [[Webcomic/SchlockMercenary Sergeant Schlock.]]
** One particular encounter in ''Star Munchkin'' is an ''Ogre'' cybertank.
** One of the Space Ships in the expansion booster for Star Munchkin is "[[{{Firefly}} Housefly]]" which grants specific bonuses if you're using it with the cowboy set.
** ''Munchkin Apocalypse'' has [[HorsemenOfTheApocalypse The Four Horsies of the Apocalypse]], who are [[Franchise/MyLittlePonyGeneration4 ponies]]. Famine's cutie mark is an apple core, and Pestilence's cutie mark is a germ, but Death and War's cutie marks aren't visible. Famine even has Pinkie Pie's color scheme and mane.
** One of the monsters in Munchkin Bites is [[Franchise/MortalKombat Mortal Kom Bat]].
** Munchkin Dragons has a few.
** The Magic Dragon wants to be your friend. If you fight him and lose, he makes one of your leels vanish in a Puff of smoke
** [[Franchise/TheLordOfTheRings Smog.]] He even lets Halflings take the top card of the treasures when he appears.
* {{Superhero}}: Super Munchkin. That's right, munchkins trying to [[PlayingAgainstType play superheroes.]] Weep.
* ThatOneRule: [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] in the rulebook. "Decide who goes first by rolling the dice and arguing about the results and the meaning of this sentence and whether the fact that a word seems to be missing any effect."
* TooAwesomeToUse: The Annihilation card permanently removes one card from the game. Try to find the perfect card to use it on.
** The four blank cards that come with Cheat With Both Hands. They're intended to let you make up your own outrageous items and enemies, but there's a very big chance that whatever you come up with one day will be less awesome when it actually comes into play.
* TorpedoTits
* TradeSnark: Professor Tesla's Electrical Protective Device (pat. pending).
* VisualPun: Many. A card called "Steal a Level" depicts the theft of the tool, for example.
* WeAreStrugglingTogether: It's easy to forget that in the [[ExcusePlot premise]] of the game you play a group of adventurers that are ostensibly working together.
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!!'''Tropes referenced in-game'''
* AmazonianBeauty: The fairy on one of the "your powers have grown" cards.
* BladeOnAStick: The Swiss Army Polearm
* CardboardPrison
* DistractedByTheSexy: The picture for Cleavage Stun. Actually, the whole point of Cleavage Stun.
** And, of course, Undo Top Button.
** Also the improperly revealing ripped dress in Munchkin Bites expansion set Pants Macabre - it rips more, gaining an additional +1 with each sex change the character wearing it goes through.
** Every time a player has their gender involuntarily changed (which happens quite a lot in some games), they take a -5 to their next combat because they're distracted. Since there's no rule saying this bonus can't stack, it can only be assumed that at least ''some'' groups allow that penalty to be stackable!
* FacelessMooks: The Faceless Army.
* JumpingTheShark: the name of the supplement about pirates. [[invoked]]
* MartialArtsHeadband: The {{Badass}} Bandanna
* MostCommonSuperpower: In ''Super Munchkin'', the Cleavage Stun and the spray-on costume. (The former is only usable by females, while the latter grants a higher bonus to females than males.)
* RedShirt: A hireling in star munchkin.
** StupidSacrifice: Whose 'special ability' is to sacrifice himself even if you're winning.
* RulesLawyer: The "Invoke Obscure Rules" card. (Also highly encouraged in the gameplay.)
* ShoulderSizedDragon: The card is "Cute Shoulder Dragon," and was considered as a TropeNamer.
* StrongerWithAge: The "Ancient" monster buff card.
** And the "Baby" nerf card showing it to be even more true.
** Inverted with the Plutonium Dragon in the tabletop version of the game, whose strength is cut in half with each age category.
* TheUnpronounceable: "The Unspeakably Awful Indescribable Horror" from the original set, as well as [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin the Unpronouncable]] from ''Munchkin Cthulhu'' monster. If the latter defeats you, you can't ask for help next turn.
** "Tht Whch Hs N Vwls". Slightly more pronounceable (if you add the vowels yourself) and hanging a lampshade on how names in the Cthulhu mythos are often unpronounceable because of a shortage of vowels or weird clusters of consonants.
* ThingsManWasNotMeantToKnow: A monster from ''Star Munchkin''. It [[MarsNeedsWomen doesn't mind women]], who gain a level if they ''don't'' fight it.
* UnderwearOfPower: A card in ''Super Munchkin''.
** Also there's the Pantyhose of Giant Strength.
* WeaponAsFamiliar: Singing Sword, which dances after you give it legs of its own, counts towards your attack damage, and sings.
* WeaponOfXSlaying: Inverted by the "Sword of Slaying Everything Except Squid". It gives a substantial bonus, but against squid (there are three in the decks so far - karate squid, Squidzilla, and the Laser Squid Nemesis) the fight is automatically lost. Also, the Vorpal Sword states that it gives an extra +10 against any monster starting with J, and to not ask why. Of course, the only monsters with a J are the [[spoiler:Jabberwock]] and Judge Fredd.
* WorldOfPun: In all of its incarnations. Meet monsters such as Dr. Jackal and Mr. Hide, Tequila Mockingbird and Cowthulhu... and that's only the beginning.
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