Awesome But Impractical / New Media

"A flashy feature that has limited usability for victory."

  • Survival of the Fittest
    • Many of the guns fall under this, simply because they're good, but require training that no Ordinary Highschool Student should have to be used effectively. It is also played very straight when the villain Adam Reeves receives a Damascus sword as a prize, then discards it because it is too heavy.
    • The FP-45 Liberator in v4 seems like this at first to the user, because it comes with 10 .45 caliber rounds, each of which can be a kill if aimed right and it's better than a melee weapon. Then the user realizes that not only is it a one-shot weapon with practically no accuracy outside of point blank range, you need a wooden dowel to tap out the empty cartridge casing just so you can reload. Suddenly, the one-shot kill gun became practically useless.
  • Around 2007, Gaia Online developed a forum based RPG System for use in its Halloween Events. The system works by granting users XP with every attack, granting them an item upon a level up. Upon reaching the final level, players typically receive powerful abilities such as full heals or one hit kills. However, since they already have all the items they can get through that faction, these skills are useless. This was Subverted with the Camp Chaos event, due to a massive revamp to the system. (Battles are one on one, and items can only be obtained by defeating bosses). Players receive their most powerful skills just prior to facing the final four bosses, which makes the final battles against the Camp Councillors a breeze!
  • Kozlov, a scientist from Darwin's Soldiers had attempted to build a flare shotgun prior to the events of the first RP. Lampshaded when someone mentions his funding had been cut.
  • Mitadake High:
    • The Alondite. Pro: Two-square attack range! Con: Ridiculous fatigue drain, mediocre damage, and massive inventory burden.
    • The server settings include the speed of the In-Universe Game Clock. You can set it to 1:1 — one in-game hour is one real-world hour! But nobody ever does that, because without the pressure of the time limit, there's no motivation for the killer to kill, and without the pressure of the killer, there's no motivation for the other players to do anything.
  • Linkara has both a power morpher and a set of zeonizers, and can morph with either of them for a powerup. The latter is significantly more powerful, but requires an absurd charging time of more than a week, whereas the former works whenever its needed.
  • Kingdom of Loathing features the "Ridiculously Overelaborate Ninja Weapon", an arcane assemblage of blades, staves, spikes, and chains. It's one of the few three-handed weapons and the description text outright states you have no clue how you're supposed to use it; it has triple the chance to strike critical, and triple the chance to fumble.
  • In Mall Fight 3, Tox crafted a weapon which was a mix of dozens of weapons, but it was too heavy for anyone to use.
  • MSF High Forum: Lily loves this. Her weapon of choice is a pair of daggers made from two of her own bones! Simply drawing them (out of her wrists, no less) hurts her.
    • Awesome yet Practical: Lily has tired of this, and worked in a minor healing spell to negate the hit point loss.
  • This Very Wiki has a search toolbar for Firefox. While initially it seems like it would ruin your life even further and be great to edit articles, it's much faster to just use the search bar at the top of the page or just Google "[[Topic]] Tvtropes'' rather than use the dropdown menu and enter it.
  • Cracked has a list of The 11 Most Retarded Fictional Weapons, including the Klingon bat'leth.
    Mankind's relationship with the gun is, well, a little creepy at times. It's not even an American/Second Amendment thing, either — for centuries inventors have been trying to cram bullet-firing capabilities into every gadget they could think of, practicality be damned.
    This "who cares if it works, it'll be cool as hell!" approach to gunsmithing has given us such delights as ... (begins to list off the examples)
  • Tumblr designs tend toward the somewhat flashy, with autoplaying music. While this is reminiscent of the Geocities days of yore, there's one critical difference; those old websites, even when they were large black text on a teal background, were at least generally usable. Tumblr users tend towards aesthetically-pleasing designs that are a usability nightmare, with tiny, low-contrast hard-to-read text, which also makes links difficult to click on.
  • When doing their Minecraft series, the Yogscast generally tend to have a record of building things that look cool, but don't really work well:
    • Simon Lane has a habit of building bridges made from TNT... sometimes over lava. Funny, but it tends to backfire more often than not.
    • In the Tekkit "Jaffa Factory" series, Lewis Brindley builds a giant wall of machinery in the factory. It looks cool and is passable, but its flashiness means that more efficient methods are overlooked until Lewis himself decides it's getting in the way. In the same series, Duncan Jones chooses not to teleport eggs from the production line to the factory, instead making a roller coaster delivery system, simply because teleportation would be boring.
    • Sjin runs into problems both with his shotgun and his choice of land for "Feed the World". The shotgun is practical, but without a source of regular ammunition Sjin can only use it for really extreme cases, forcing him to manufacture more and waste time. His building site is good for starting off, but he starts running out of building space fairly quickly, and has to spend time expanding the island.
    • In Duncan Jones' "Laboratory" series, his castle is amazingly well-built, but nigh-impossible to navigate without a jetpack and Powered Armour, and doesn't even have a bed. Similarly, his flying spaceship is amazing, but would take four real-life days to reach Sips' facility.
  • In The John Dredge Nothing To Do With Anything Show's Batman & Robin spoof called Gasman & Robert, the Gasmobile is this:
    (sounds of Gasmobile being powered up)
    Gasman: Atomic batteries to Power. Turbines to speed. Ready to move out. Let's go!
    (Gasmobile breaks down)
    Gasman: On second thoughts, we'll take the bus.
    Robert: I'll get me Oyster card then.
  • RWBY
    • The events of the episode "Heroes and Monsters" ultimately prove this towards Yang Xiao Long's weapons, the shot-gauntlets Ember Celica. Yes, they are shotgun-mounted gauntlets and they are awesome as you expect. Unlike Ruby Rose, Weiss Schnee and Blake Belladonna's companion weapons (Crescent Rose, Myrtenaster and Gambol Shroud), it loses out on the protective distance a blade and/or handle grants, requiring Yang to get up into someone's face. Yang learns this the hard way when Adam Taurus effortlessly deflects her attack and cuts off her arm at the elbow.
    • Yang's Semblance is also this the way she uses it, according to Taiyang. As even seen in the series, she uses her power not as a boost, but as an unnatural temper tantrum. If she is taken out in some way before she can use it, it's useless.
    • Volume 5 reveals that, after she was crushed by Ruby's Silver Eye power at the end of Volume 3, Cinder had her arm replaced with that of a Grimm. While this Grimm-arm can stretch, impale people, and even steal Maiden-power, it can be weakened by Ruby's Silver Eyes, hurting Cinder. And since it's Grimm, it can't be protected by Aura. When Cinder and Raven fight, a piece of shrapnel impales the arm, even though Cinder still had a full Aura.
    • RWBY Chibi briefly discusses Professor Port's blunderbuss, which has two ax blades on its stock. Weiss, who is borrowing the weapon for a play, has no idea how to hold it and the blades make it hard to aim. Professor Port chimes in "Ha-ha! Personal preference!"
  • Critical Role:
    • Percy's shock gauntlet, Diplomacy. Despite being a totally awesome design concept with the capacity to do a fair amount of damage and potentially stun its target, he's only used it in combat a handful of times, due to three major drawbacks: First, Percy is primarily a ranged fighter; his most powerful gun has a range of 1200 feet, which is insane. If anyone gets close enough to hit Percy in melee, he has a habit of shooting them point-blank anyway. Second, the gauntlet needs to be charged with a lightning spell beforehand, which means Percy either needs to take lightning damage at just the right time, or ask Keyleth or Scanlan to charge it up for him and burn through one of their spell slots. Thirdly, Diplomacy can only hold a single charge, meaning Percy is better served using dex-based melee weapons, such as rapiers, so he can attack three times. All of this - plus the non-zero chance Diplomacy could explode if used incorrectly - makes it a very situational weapon.
    • Craven Edge, Grog's sentient greatsword taken from Sylas Briarwood. It is insanely powerful, dealing extra necrotic damage on hits, and it comes with the ability to drain the strength of foes, potentially boosting Grog's strength to 24 when the normal maximum is 20. The problem is that if Grog ever reaches that 24 strength, which he does in Episode 49, there's a chance that Craven Edge will suck out his soul and kill him instantly, which is what happens the episode after that. After finding that out, the party decides that the cost of using the sword is too high.
    • Trinket. It seems very awesome to have a brown bear as a member of the party, but with his very low pool of hitpoints, he's too fragile to risk fighting in most battles. That said, after about Episode 25, Vex begins to come up with some very clever ways of using him, especially with Trinket's trample attack and the Raven's Slumber Jewel (Trinket's "pokeball")
  • In Death Battle, Boomstick mentions having patented a baby cannon. Wiz actually signed off on this, but both of them noted there was the problem with reloading.
  • The Red Panda Adventures episode "The Missing Link" features, as a Posthumous Character, a scientist who had a tendency towards this in his inventions. Described in the episode are an airborne method of moving electricity that loses too much power in the transference process, a de-evolution beam that worked only as long as it remained on its target, and a mobile cloud cover that couldn't move as fast as the fighter planes it was intended to cover. The Mad Monkey got hold of these designs and combined them to create a de-evolution ray with a wide area effect contained within his slow moving, monkey-shaped zeppelin that allowed him to create an army of ape men under his command.