Project Zomboid: Hammers, baseball bats, and boards of wood can be used as weapons. With some nails, you can put some spikes on the bat.
In the Mega Man main serie, many Robot Master's weapons are actually industrial tools.Many character sheets show that their weapons were intended for entirely different uses.
The Half-Life series has Gordon Freeman's trusty crowbar. Half-Life 2 turned this into an artform by adding to the player's arsenal the "Zero Point Energy Field Manipulator", more colloquially known as the Gravity Gun, which can grab objects and hurl them at enemies with considerable force. Obviously lethal projectiles, such as buzzsaw blades, propane tanks, and the ubiquitous Exploding Barrels, are littered throughout the game, but it's possible to kill enemies with wrenches, chairs, paint cans, live grenades, orbs of disintegrating energy, other dead enemies and yes, the kitchen sink.
There is a Steam achievement for killing an enemy with a toilet.
Father Grigori's various contraptions littered about Ravenholm. Some of them need to be temporarily disabled in order to proceed.
At one point, the player gets the chance to turn a gigantic magnetic crane into a weapon. Few things say "you're fucked" like having a shipping container dropped on your head.
None of the Left 4 Dead 2 melee weapons was originally designed for whacking zombies, to say the least.
Dead Rising for the Xbox 360 has this as a main selling point. Any item that Frank can lift can be used to kill zombies, up to and including a deck parasol. An Xbox Achievement is actually called "It's Raining Men" and involves using the deck parasol to push a number of zombies out of the way. It's actually a great item to clear a path. Bowling balls will knock over zombies like bowling pins. In a pinch, park benches will kill a dozen zombies in a single swing - and then break. Now, burning zombie faces with a heated frying pan, throwing soda cans at zombies heads or embedding a ketchup bottle there... that's just silly. To say nothing of the Shower Head, now. Zombies seem to have High-Pressure Blood, so jamming one in their head causes them to give themselves showers. And at later skill levels, the player learns a skill that lets him pick up zombies and throw them.
BioShock includes a Telekinesis skill, which allows you to kill enemies by smashing a bag of potato chips into their heads at high velocity. Also, your first weapon is a pipe wrench.
How about killing someone by hitting them with their own hat?
It also features projectile weapons cobbled together from everyday objects, including a crossbow made of, among other things, a labelled cigar box and security systems made of food crates, office chairs and tennis ball launchers.
You can also make ammo out of things like screws, petrol and rubber tubing with the u-invent machines.
All Isaac's weapons in Dead Space are modified mining tools, except for the pulse rifle. You can also use another tool, kinesis, to pick up and throw anything not nailed down. Including dead zombie babies at other zombie babies.
Most of the tools seem to be designed to cause grievous personal injury in case of pirate attack anyways. Give me one reason why the Ripper would ever need to launch a sawblade at mach 1 otherwise. And the rivet guns from the Rail-shooter prequel clearly have the contact-safety pressure switch disabled. One theory is that their previous owners or Isaac modified them for weapons use, we just didn't get to see said modification.
Dead Space 2 drives it even more, the plasma cutter, Isaac's main weapon is made from a flashlight and a surgical tissue laser.
The MMO Vindictus runs away with this trope. The player can pick up virtually any object lying about and use it to beat the hell out of their enemies, including vases, sticks, signposts, cauldrons, boulders, small trees...needless to say, the results are spectacular. There are even several titles that can be earned this way. It's based on the Source engine, so perhaps the developers thought they'd pay their respects to Half-Life 2 in this way.
In The Punisher videogame, many interesting objects can be picked up and used for a quick — and graphic — kill, including pipe wrenches, baseball bats, kitchen knives, beer-bottles, crowbars, billy-clubs... Oddly enough, all of these items — including the metallic ones — will shatter into tiny fragments after one use.
This was also present in the older arcade game, in which Frank could use anything from baseball bats to bags of sand to flower pots as weapons. They all broke eventually, but at least they last more than one hit.
The characters in Siren and Siren 2 generally use random objects they find as weapons. Examples would be umbrellas, wooden sticks, crowbars, fire pokers, shovels, hammers, wrenches, shoe horns, trophies, and pipes. Other characters might have guns or special objects instead, or might lack weapons entirely.
The games in the Hitman series have increasingly featured outlandish methods of killing 47's targets. In addition to our bald friend's regular weapons, he can use anything found in a kitchen, crush people with falling chandeliers and, on several occasions, push them over railings to their deaths. Later games, like Hitman: Contracts allowed the player to use implements such as pool cues, garden shears and swords to kill targets with.
The 'Ave Maria' trailer for Hitman 5 contains this trope almost exclusively. In short order a guard is drowned in a decorative pond, another beaten with a walking stick, a third has his head slammed in a door, #4 is smashed over the head with a statue bust and then strangled with electrical cable torn right out of the wall, and finally a fifth is beaten before having his neck snapped using the sling of his own weapon.
Hitman: Absolution's many weapons include a plunger. Yes, the toilet unclogger.
Slave Zero for the PC. The main character is a Humongous Mecha who can use metal girders, pipes, cars and indeed people as both thrown projectiles and melee weapons. It is not explained how holding a screaming, flailing tiny person causes a punch to deal more damage. Such things are obviously only good once if thrown, but will last for several hits if used in melee. Note that people who get thrown on walls leave a satisfying bloody mess. Also note that gravity has no influence on the trajectory of launched items: they all travel in a straight line.
Fighting Force is an old videogame in which the main character can use a lot of the level's objects to bash his enemies' heads in (both by smashing and throwing), including (but not limited to) handrails, girders, fire axes, subway tokens, luggage and fire hydrants. In an interesting twist, shooting a car with an explosive weapon will cause it to explode and lose its tires and engine block, all of which can be used as weapons.
Really, just pick a Beat 'em Up at random and it's bound to feature at least one handy barrel to toss at the opponents.
This was really only doable in the Tea House fight. You could backflip to break furniture and pick it up, the character shouting "I'll improvise!", and pummel the bad guys with chair legs and hams, but this was the only place where you could do this.
Phantom Brave by Nippon Ichi makes this an art form. Everything on a given stage can be used as a weapon, from swords and axes, to rocks, pillars, clumps of grass, and the bodies of your allies and enemies. Not only that, but these weapons and ordinary items have their own magic and special attacks. So if you pick up a log, for example, you can not only use it as a club, but if you level it up, it also becomes a BFG.
The computer game Freedom Force and its sequels, based on Golden and Silver AgeSuper Hero comics, has characters who can pick up pieces of the environment as weapons including electrical poles, cars and trees.
In Sa Ga Frontier Gen somehow cuts through a thick rope using a rusty length of pipe. Somewhat lampshaded when T260 remarks upon the absurdity of such a feat and nearly Logic Bombs itself trying to figure out how it's even mathematically possible. .
Sa Ga Frontier 2 allowed you to use the terrain you were standing on for magic. Standing on grass allowed you to use tree magic, snow allowed you to use water magic, etc.
EarthBound for the Super Nintendo practically epitomizes this trope, as the main characters (all of them young children) have to defeat enemies using improvised weapons such as baseball bats, frying pans and bottle rockets, just to name a few. The game even goes one step further, when, during the final boss battle, the character must use the power of prayer to help them get an edge over the last enemy.
In River City Ransom, you can use various objects like pipes, tires, trash cans, baseballs, boxes, rocks, even unconscious foes as weapons. You can either throw them or use them as a club, leading to tons of wonderful fights where you knock someone out by tossing a tire at their head, then picking up their body and whacking their buddy with it.
The bread-and-butter of the combat system in Condemned: Criminal Origins, where the main method of arming yourself is by ripping something off the environment. Considering the game's themes and dark setting, not at all done for comedy (unless it's of the dead baby variety). Some of the more... memorable weapons include the "cutter" part of a paper cutter, the fireaxe, the sledgehammer, and the butcher knife. And also mannequin arms. See that gun, Officer Thomas? You can't reload it.
The Super Smash Bros. series feature a large variety of items that can mostly be used offensively in some way. Among other things, a Paper Fan, Mr. Saturn (from Earthbound), Smoke Bombs and Pokéballs (not only to release the Pokémon inside, the ball itself can hurt characters). Even Springs can be thrown at enemies for some damage. And keys. And then there are characters that use things like an umbrella (Peach), turnips (Peach again), Pikmin (Olimar) or a chair (Mr.Game&Watch) to fight their enemies.
Every single one of Mr. Game & Watch's attacks is an outrageously over-the-top weapon, from his manhole cover to a can of bug spray to various hammers (grand total three... not including the hammer items) to cooked meat out of a frying pan and the frying pan itself to a turtle. And they're all taken from actual Game & Watch games. Mr. Game & Watch is the honest-to-god embodiment of this trope.
Cubone and Marowak use a dirt-covered bone (they're Ground-Type for some reason), and Farfetch'd uses a Stick, which became an actual Item in Generation II.
Introduced in Gen IV is the move Fling, which makes you throw your held item- any held item- at the enemy.
NetHack permits you to use any in-game object as a weapon. Whack someone over the head with a potion of blindness, and the bottle will shatter, blinding the target — if the target monster has eyes. Tap them with a cockatrice corpse, and they'll turn to stone. Toss a boulder at them, and they'll go * splat* . Proper weapons generally do better than improvised ones, but there's just something satisfying about killing off the hardest monsters in the game with a can-opener.
Justice League Heroes lets your chosen hero pick up a variety of items, from pipes and such (for heroes such as Batman and the Flash) to cars and dumpsters (for Superman and Wonderwoman).
Shadow Hearts: Covenant has professional-wrestler vampire Joachim use whatever he can carry. He starts with a timber, and upgrades to a locker, a red mailbox, a frozen tuna, a giant earthen pipe, a clay idol (to the horror of Kurando, whose village venerates the idol in question)... You don't actually have to buy weapons for Joachim, as you can find them in various locations. From The New World goes one step further. That swordfish stuck on the deck? Your Brazilian ninja will stick a sword hilt up its rectum and swing it around.
One of the high points of said Brazilian ninja's weapon-collecting tendencies is when the party finds the actual Sword in the Stone. Rather than pull the sword out of the stone, Frank (the ninja) attaches a sword hilt to the already-existing hilt of the sword. While it is still in the stone.
Metal Gear Solid 3 gives us the fork, which is first used for hunting rats to fill up stamina and for self-defense. SIGINT even lampshades this by wondering why Snake continues to carry it around even after getting his gear back.
In War Of The Monsters your giant monster playable characters can pummel opponents with a wide variety of building wreckage and detritus. These include girders, TV antennas, trains, explosive petrol tankers, water towers, and the wooden breasts of a giant cartoon woman used to decorate a casino.
Some of the seemingly benign assets offered to commanders in Battlefield 2 and Battlefield 2142 are supply drops, UAV scans, and vehicle drops. BF2 commanders learned early on that stray vehicles can ruin an enemy runway, preventing jets from taking off. Many a sniper or flag capper found themselves the victim of a precisely aimed supply crate. And rooftop soldiers in BF2142 fell to the otherwise harmless UAV, which either pushed them off or crushed them against the building. The most damning point is that many of these "attacks" were lethal in a way that artillery strikes weren't.
The "XBOW" in BF3's Aftermath DLC is a crossbow made out of a broken HK417, allowing for easy addition of optics due to the full-length top rail.
The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction featured "weaponization", which allowed the Hulk to transform various objects in the game's world into weapons. Examples include fashioning a pair of gauntlets out of a car or turning a truck into a shield/surfboard.
Prototype by the same developers, involved them sitting down and going "what if the player could weaponize himself? In addition to his powers, Alex can pick up cars and throw them at foes, as wel as using them as a shield to charge through a crowd.
Despite them being intentionally equipped as weaponry, most of the melee weapons in Team Fortress 2 could be considered improvised. The Scout uses a baseball bat, the Soldier uses an entrenchment shovel (you can't actually entrench yourself in-game or anything...), the Pyro uses a fire axe, the Demoman uses a bottle of whiskey (he can drink from it in his taunt... even when the bottom of it is smashed open), the Engineer uses his wrench, and the Medic uses a bonesaw. And those are just the default weapons; some of the unlockable melee weapons are downright bizarre.
To date, some of the stranger melee weapons include a candy cane, a riding crop, a rake, a mailbox, a LIVE grenade on a stick, a golf club, and a bust of Hippocrates.
A fish, a roll of wrapping paper, jars of piss and milk, an icicle, and a frying pan, to name a few more.
In Persona 4, the heroes can use (alongside swords, knives, kicks, bladed gloves, and guns (Naoto)) Baseball bats, golf clubs, kitchen knives, wrenches, shoes, wooden/paper fans, fans with blades, spiky-ball(?) glove, shields (as a bludgeon), folding chairs, and a school desk (note: the last 3 on the list are the only weapons that Kanji uses).
It gets ridiculous in The Golden. Some of the weapons you can use (in addition to the above) include: Shovels, brooms, a Bus stop sign, cheering flag, bass guitar, Beach Parasol, bowling pins, Pinwheels, Bones, Trout (as in the fish), Megaphones, Maracas, socks, animal slippers, Inline Skates, Spring Boots, a Frisbee, serving tray (made of good silver), Tambourine, rubber band gun, water gun, crab claw, a Reindeer hoof, a factory sign, a much bigger fish, Cymbal, a Casket lid, floor tile, drum, and even a fricken Christmas Wreath.
In Alone In The Dark 2008, most enemies can only be killed by fire. If no fire is around, the player must use inventory items to improvise. Alcohol can be poured on bullets to make fire bullets, or the bottle can be thrown and shot midair for an explosive weapon. There are also classic examples, such as the flamethrower from a aerosol can and lighter, or using cloth and a bottle for a molotov cocktail.
In Crysis, the player can kill people with almost anything, including floorboards and live animals. Building materials are also an easy way to go because an apparent lack of nails in the South Pacific makes the buildings rather flimsy.
In Silent Hill Origins, one of the tips from the beginning of the game is that you can pick things like TVs up and throw them at enemies...
All the Silent Hill games have at least one weapon like this; the most improvised of 'em all being the plank from Silent Hill 2, which James quickly plucks off a wooden barricade and uses to beat a monster's head in. The most disappointing being the "paper-cutting knife" from Silent Hill 4 (you'd think it'd be that enormous hinged blade like in Condemned, but no; it's actually just a damned box cutter).
It'd probably be shorter to list the melee weapons in the series that don't fall under this. In which case, there's the katana from multiple games, the Great Knife from 2, the mace and laser sword from 3, the spear from Origins, the combat knife from Homecoming, and... well, that's about it. The rock drill from the original and chainsaw from multiple games also fall under their own tropes, but are also improvised weapons, being that they're not intended for use as weapons and your character just picks them up from the environment because they might need them. (Once you unlock them, at least)
The Force Unleashed. Anything that isn't bolted to the floor can be lifted up with the Force, charged with Force Lightning and thrown into enemies. Anything. This goes up to grabbing a strafing TIE Fighter and throwing it at a group of enemies.
In Fallout 3 you can obtain schematics for various weapons to make out of the junk which litters the game's After the End setting. These weapons themselves qualify to a degree (such as a crossbow made from a paint gun and a toy car and a flaming sword made from a lawnmower blade and a petrol tank) but the straightest example of this trope is the Rock-It-Launcher, which can fire anything you put into it as a projectile.
In Fallout: New Vegas, the trend is continued, with machetes that are clearly lawnmower blades electrical-taped onto a wooden handle. Another is a "rebar club" which is literally a steel rebar with a chunk of concrete on the end swung as a club. There's also the Bumper Sword, which is literally a car bumper, license plate still attached, which has been fashioned into a massive sword.
In Perfect Dark, the SpyCam is a tiny, floating camera that can be used to go into hostile territories. Once it's part of the mission is over, you can find some bad guys. Float in front of a guard's head and his partner will recognzie the Spycam and SHOOT IT. The explosion kills the first guard.
LEGO Indiana Jones lets you pick up random objects, and beat enemies to death with them if you fight while holding said objects. This includes a banana.
In Dwarf Fortress, if you can hold it, you can kill someone with it. This includes a handful of sand, a handful of vomit, a handful of gravel, and the enemy's own pants.
That applies mostly to throwing the improvised weapon (swinging a pair of pants does mostly what it sounds like it would do)note Unless you are exceptionally big and strong. Bronze collossi have been known to beat dwarves to death with a sock. However, it isn't as effective as punching them. However, throwing seem to turn even sand into deadly projectiles.
My favourite thing in adventure mode is being able to take water out of a waterskin, throw it such that it spins, and then watch it break the arm of my target.
Also, miners' picks are not only useable as weapons, but very good when used as weapons, especially in Fortress mode, since it uses the same Mining skill, practiced every time a dorf digs a corridor or something.
In Persona 3: FES, the most powerful gloves in the game are... skulls. And appears to be able to hold without you ACTUALLY HOLD THEM.
In Higurashi Daybreak, the fighting game of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, you can choose between having your character use his or her Weapon of Choice and giving them another item that can be used in the same manner. And if Keiichi trading in his baseball bat for a golf club doesn't do it for you, you can go for a character without a Weapon of Choice, who instead gets items associated with him or her and is forced to use these as weapons. Rika running around with a mop and spray bottle and Tomitake blinding people with the flash on his camera is fun. The anime is about to adapt this arc in its OVA.
Also featured in Resident Evil Outbreak and File #2, Brooms, Crutches and length of pipes can be used as improv weapons against the zombies and a certain character can combine these with other weapons to create Spears, Sledgehammers and Stun Rods.
Spelunky. If you can pick it up, you can throw it as a weapon. This includes Distressed Damsels, cavemen, valuable gold idols, treasure chests, stolen dice... and not only as weapons - you can also spring traps by throwing stuff, including the damsels. Ladies first...!
Kazuma Kiryuu from Yakuza is capable of beating the crap out of people with a range of unconventional weaponry including, but not limited to: bowling balls, flowerpots, briefcases, traffic cones, tea kettles, and salt shakers.
In the Ultima game Savage Empire, it is possible to build grenades out of clay pots and rifles out of bamboo.
A Lethal Joke Item at that. It's twice as strong as the Kokiri Sword (which makes it on par with the Master Sword), and under certain glitches, you can sometimes use a single stick indefinitely instead of having to pull a new one out after each hit.
In BloodRayne 2, the eponymous character uses mounted animals' antlers/horns, a ventilation fan, and a garbage truck (which explodes after a certain amount of "feeding") to dispose of her enemies. Oh, and you get more powers(via the Carnage/Experience meter) the more enemies in a row you kill(with more unusual deaths providing greater base amounts to be multiplied), within a certain time limit...
Kratos from God of War doesn't really need to improvise weapons, but he occasionally does anyway. Most notable might be from the second game, where he kills Theseus by repeatedly slamming a door into his face. Ripping off a Gorgon's head and using it to petrify enemies also counts.
He'll also use an enemies whole body as a projectile, ranging from kicking dogs across screen at someones heads to impaling footsoldiers and flinging them at larger groups.
Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy is another case of telekinetically-fueled improvisation, as anything not bolted down — including enemies, live or dead — can be thrown about with impunity. For bonus damage, set it on fire first You can even improvise a hovering power by standing on a crate, lifting it with TK and then surfing it across the room!
Ditto with Second Sight where telekinesis is your very first power.
A defensive example: Marky of Backyard Sports makes shin guards out of newspaper. (It actually helps him.)
Metro 2033 has a host of improvised weapons fashioned by the inhabitants of the postapocalyptic Moscow Metro. There's the unreliable homemade assault rifle (It uses 5.45x39 bullets, so it's an AR, not a sub-machine gun), prone to overheating and known colloquially as the "Bastard", the shotguns — one of which appears to be made of some pipes — and the pneumatic spearguns and sniper rifles, which you will actually have to duck into a sheltered corner and pump up during a firefight, besides reloading the spears/ball bearings. It's pretty evocative and demonstrated improvised weaponry very realistically.
Crisis Core manages this at one point of the story and in a few sub-missions at Costa Del Sol. Zack has to defend the area armed with nothing but a BEACH UMBRELLA. Which happens to be as powerful as his sword!
In Alan Wake, because your enemies are darkness, anything that creates light can be used as a weapon, usually your flashlight. At one point, the Plucky Comic Relief defends himself by wearing a headlamp ("It's my flaming eye of Mordor!") and wrapping himself in Christmas lights ("For protection. Like garlic against vampires."). And in a Crowning Moment Of Awesome, the pyrotechnics of a rock stage help blast away the enemies' protective darkness.
In Assassin's Creed II Ezio can liberate people of items like brooms and farming implements and use them perfectly well as weapons. In Brotherhood you get an achievement/trophy ("Spring Cleaning") for killing a guard with a broom.
In World of Warcraft there are at least four daggers who use a model of a broken wine bottle.
In Varian Wrynn's short story, he picks up a shard of Deathwing's armor, and later in the story, uses it to kill a drakonid trying to assassinate him.
In Rule of Rose Jennifer is almost exclusively limited to these, from kitchen knives to steel pipes. The first weapon found in the game must be the most pathetic example in all gaming history, however: a dessert fork!
Action Doom 2: Urban Brawl is all about these - you have fists and a gun, but most of the time you'll be using various weapons, though they break quickly. These include chains, pipes, knives, bottles, broken bottles, pool cues, sledgehammers, baseball bats, two-by-fours, bronze statues, and fire extinguishers that freeze enemies.
Ever Stage in Shadow the Hedgehog has some bit of the scenery that can be broken, picked up, and used like a sword. Light Poles, Street Signs, Torch Stands, you name it. They are one of the weakest weapons in the game and break after four hits...
Mine Craft: ANYTHING you pick up can be used as a weapon, even blocks of dirt and pork chops. Anything that isn't a pickaxe, sword, axe, or shovel does 1 heart of damage only, but you can still kill any enemy with any item obtainable in the game.
In Ace Attorney, when the murders aren't planned in advance (sometimes years beforehand!) the murderer just seems to grab the first thing that comes to hand (e.g. a statue/clock in the shape of "The Thinker" was used as the murder weapon in the first two cases of the first game.)
The first victim in Dual Destinies is initially believed to be a casualty of the courtroom bombing. Turns out the bomb killed her, but as a bludgeon, not an explosive device.
The whole Little Busters! fighting system is based on this. Rather than having everyone fight hand-to-hand or with weapons, either of which could be dangerous, Kyousuke comes up with the idea that whenever two people fight, the audience around them will throw in all kinds of useless items (such as a bucket, a net, a bar of soap, nail clippers, etc.) and the fighters must choose one and can only fight by using the item for its 'normal' use. Naturally, the whole thing becomes very randomised, very silly, and quite fun.
In Penumbra: Overture you fight using an ordinary pickaxe, hammer, and broom, or by throwing various physics objects. The rest of the series takes away all of these except the physics objects.
Dark Souls has the Dragon Tooth, favoured weapon of Havel The Rock. Note that the pointy end of the fang is used as the grip, with the base being used to bludgeon enemies (and players attempting to use the Berg/Basin shortcut) into dust. It's also one of the few unbreakable weapons in the game.
Varying examples include the weapons acquired by severing certain boss's tails. Some of them are quite weapon-like in form (such as the rather standard looking Gargoyle Axe) whereas others are barely more than a vaguely weapon shaped mass (ie. the Dragon Greatsword).
Doom 3 also has the flashlight. Since the vanilla version of the game makes it unfortunately necessary to tote the light around in place of a normal weapon sometimes, the dev team was at least nice enough to make it a decent bludgeon, usually taking out former humans in one or two smacks.
Unreal Tournament has at least two weapons adapted from mining tools: The Impact Hammer (a pneumatic drill) and the Pulse Gun (specifically its alternate fire, a cutting torch).
The Translocator was originally designed as an emergency escape device to increase miners' survivability during cave-ins. In the game you can still use it to get to out-of-reach places, or to score a Telefrag.
A game mutator allows you to play with a chainsaw instead of the Impact Hammer.
Mischief Makers revolves around grabbing, shaking and throwing anything you can find, from guns, bombs and shuriken to enemy mooks, robot parts, bullets, lasers (as in grabbing laser beams out of the air and throwing them back), negative emotions...
AK-FU aside, the weapons of Sunset Overdrive include teddy bars strapped to sticks of dynamite with an egg timer as a fuse, bowling ball cannons, vinyl record launchers, and a fire-extinguisher powered spear gun that has a can of soda attached to distract enemies.