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 Darwins 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.
  • The Alondoite in Mitadake Highit attacks two panels away, but saps your HP like a spah, and the setting makes that an in-game equal to one real life hour. Funnily enough, it never gets used..
  • 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.