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A number of arcade games will provide a variety of stages, characters, and other settings to select. For most newcomers, none of this matters, because they'll just go for the default settings. These are the settings you'll always, ''always'' see whenever someone at the arcade tries a game that they're new to, and in bigger cases of this trope, merely picking something other than the defaults is a sign of experience with the game.

This can also apply to online multiplayer games and, to a lesser extent, local multiplayer and single-player games.

{{Rhythm Game}}s are a pretty special case. This trope can make the default song into a ([[HypeBacklash scorned]]) EarWorm, with some people [[FanHater developing the urge to brutally murder any more players who play that song]].

A form of ComplacentGamingSyndrome, though in this case players aren't motivated by what's the best settings so much as not knowing much about the game or being too lazy to change settings (or not knowing how to change the settings.) However, if the defaults ''are'' the best settings, these two tropes can overlap.



[[folder: Driving Games ]]

* The Beginner tracks of ''VideoGame/DaytonaUSA'' and ''Daytona USA 2''. Justified in that the other courses tend to be [[NintendoHard Sega Hard]].
* ''VideoGame/MarioKart Arcade GP'' has the Mario Highway course. ''Mario Kart Arcade GP 2'' has Yoshi Park 1 take up this honor instead.
* ''VideoGame/MarioKart DS'', where the first track ([[http://www.mariowiki.com/Figure-8_Circuit Figure-8 Circuit]]) is also the easiest to snake on.
* In a peculiar example, the ''VideoGame/NeedForSpeedUnderground'' games actually gave benefit to players who stayed default... well, sort of. The second game in particular encouraged you to find and buy new cars often, because the new cars' ''base'' stats were higher than the base stats of the starter cars. The newer unlocked cars also looked a lot nicer than the mundane, boxy starter cars. Players smart enough to experiment, however, would realize to NOT switch cars as the game wanted you to-- [[MagikarpPower the two best cars in the game (when fully upgraded) were both starter cars]], and the BEST car in the game was also the ugliest and had the worst starter stats. In this way, if you did the default (that is to say, change cars) of what the GAME wanted you to do, you'd end up with a worse car than if you stuck with the default you started with.
* Competitive ''VideoGame/WanganMidnight Maximum Tune'' players--believe it or not--often play versus matchines with [[ComebackMechanic handicap]] left '''on'''. The rationale is that in a no-handicap round, the unpredictable traffic behavior combined with the massive loss in speed that comes with a single crash at 340 km/h means that a single mistake will completely screw over the victim unless the other player makes a mistake, resulting in [[LuckBasedMission luck-based outcomes]], while traffic-less racing games like ''VideoGame/InitialDArcadeStage'' offer room for recovery if one screws up.
* Only the host in an online room can choose the racetrack in ''[[VideoGame/SegaSuperstars Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing]]'', which always defaults to the first track, Whale Lagoon. The thing is that the track is chosen through a sub-menu, not from the lobby, where most other racing games allow you to choose. The result is online play being utterly ''dominated'' by races on Whale Lagoon, more so than any other track combined.
* Its sequel, ''Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed'', slowly grew into this as the game continued to be played online, making it an inverted case. At the beginning, many players picked all three game modes, between Race, Lucky Dip (randomized modes, including some exclusive to Lucky Dip), Arena (battle mode), and Boost Race (no items, lots of boost pads), but over time, people withdrew from the other modes and focused nearly entirely on Race mode, making it very hard to find opponents in any of the other modes, though there would occasionally be groups of people playing Boost Race.


[[folder: Fighting Games ]]

* Who do the character select cursors in ''VideoGame/BlazBlue'' default to? Ragna and, [[ComplacentGamingSyndrome that's right]], ''[[TierInducedScrappy Jin]]''.
* The arcade release of ''[[VideoGame/SoulSeries Soul Calibur III]]'' includes a mode where players fight through the roster to a powerful opponent who is strengthened by how many victories over human opponents the computer has has. While the player can choose this opponent, Maxi is almost always the highest, as he is the character the mode defaults to.
* Application of this trope in ''VideoGame/{{Tekken}}'' shows that sometimes TropesAreNotBad, since the game defaults to the new characters of each game (Xiaoyu and Jin in ''3'', Raven and Asuka in ''5'', etc.), thus giving them free promotion for newcomers to see. Those already familiar to the games usually avert this, and even if they do choose the default setting, they tend to browse through the selection first.


[[folder: MOB As ]]

* For quite a while, '''A'''lchemist used to be the default pick of a new ''{{DotA}} 2'' player. If you were playing at a low level and someone picked this character, you knew they hadn't even figured out how to choose a character yet.


[[folder: Rhythm Games ]]

* In ''VideoGame/DanceDanceRevolution'', most new players tend to not stray very far from the first song on the song select; as a result, when the game first came out, "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDZBWU5QY8w Have You Never Been Mellow]]" (from the first US console release of DDR), "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2EebUbR2wFM Make a Jam!]]" (from the first US arcade release) and "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4EbpJ4FgdAk Butterfly]]" were the most commonly picked songs. In fact, this lead to a [[SeriousBusiness "Death to Butterfly" group]] on a particular forum.
** A variation prevalent in the arcade version of ''Extreme'' is the Default ''List'' Syndrome. Instead of being stuck at the first song that comes up, new players get stuck at the minimized song selection displayed by the default sort. This is because unlike previous arcade games, the default sort only lists the 83 new original and revived licensed songs, making the master tracklist smaller than it really is (in reality, the game features 210+ songs). Accessing older songs requires you to toggle the sort by pressing the left and right selection buttons, which not many newbies would know from the get-go. Thus, "Speed Over Beethoven", "Crash!", and "Love Love Shine" are 99% guaranteed to appear in the Top 10 most picked songs.
** This syndrome has slowly receded in later games; while licensed songs are understandably presented first, easier song access has made recognition of older songs widespread. To rectify the sorting problem in ''Extreme'', folders of older songs are displayed alongside the new song folder starting in ''[=SuperNova=]''.
* "First Kiss" in ''DJMAX Technika''.
* ''VideoGame/PopNMusic'' has [[EasierThanEasy Enjoy mode]], or Easy mode in ''pop'n music 20 fantasia'' And within Enjoy mode, there's 5-button mode, which makes use of only 5 out of the machine's 9 buttons. As of ''pop'n music Sunny Park'', the trope is averted, as Easy mode is removed and replaced with an Easy difficulty in Normal mode.
* ''VideoGame/{{beatmania}} IIDX'' generally averts this, as most players are experienced enough that you never see the default song getting played more than three times per day.
* Para Para mode in ''VideoGame/ParaParaParadise''. Most players prefer to play it so they can mimic the routines, something that is near-impossible in Freestyle mode due to the changing camera angles on the on-screen dancer.
* ''DJMAX Portable'''s 4 Button mode. It doesn't help that players who use 4B get used to it, and thus have much trouble progressing to any of the more difficult button modes.
* ''VideoGame/RockBand'' (the original) has "Say It Ain't So" by Weezer as its first song when ordered by band difficulty. When the developers were testing the game before implementing the song select screen, this was the default song that played every time, reportedly driving many Harmonix developers into madness.
* The arcade version of [[VideoGame/GuitarHero Guitar Hero III]] tries to avert this by increasing the price of its most overplayed songs. Slow Ride, the first song on the setlist, is almost always set at the premium price.


[[folder: Shoot Em Ups ]]

* Most ''VideoGame/GigaWing'' players use the default character, [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Sinnosuke/Shinnosuke]]. To quote one user on Website/YouTube:
--> "Don't pick slow ship! [[AwesomeButImpractical Just because it has wide shot doesn't mean it's gonna save your ass!]] [[MightyGlacier You're gonna have to move, too.]]"
* The normal, blue version of the RVR-01 Gauntlet in ''VideoGame/ThunderForce V''; the other versions have to be selected with a code involving the player 2 controller, which makes them [[GuideDangIt relatively unknown]] to most players.


[[folder: Other ]]

* Most players in ''VideoGame/GHOSTSquad'' never use any weapon other than the XM-2119, and always have their mission difficulty levels at 1. If an arcade with GS upgrades to ''[[ExpansionPack GHOST Squad Evolution]]'', most people will not notice the extra weapons, costumes, or mission levels due to, again, playing with the defaults, and as a result many players will think ''Evolution'' is no different from non-upgraded ''GHOST Squad''.
* ''VideoGame/TetrisTheGrandMaster 3'' defaults to [[http://harddrop.com/wiki/SRS World Rule]], the game's implementation of the the rotation system used in newer licensed ''Tetris'' games. As a result, those who don't already play TGM may start off with World Rule and then get very thrown off when they try [[http://harddrop.com/wiki/TGM_Rotation Classic Rule]] (a version of TGM rotation altered to accommodate [=TGM3=]'s higher speeds), not only because of the more limited wall kicks but also due to its version of [[http://harddrop.com/wiki/Drop#Hard_drop fast drop]] (drop the piece to the ground, but not lock it right away).
* In ''Fallen Empire: Legions'', people new to the game and Guests almost always use the Sentinel because they haven't figured out that you can change characters. It makes it even worse that it takes time and practice to actually master the Sentinel. Poor buggers.
* In ''VideoGame/StarTrekStarfleetCommand'', everyone plays as either Federation or Klingon. Sometimes Romulans, maybe Gorn. Hardly anyone as Hydran, Lyran, or ISC. Probably because the latter three aren't canonical to Star Trek. And does anyone really care about the Orion Pirate cartels? As for the Mirak, how many Trekkies remember missile salvos being used in Star Trek.
** The Mirak probably aren't helped by the fact that while the Hydran, Lyran and ISC are all from one of the two sources of canon for Starfleet Command, the Mirak are ''not'' (they're an expy, due to a complicated rights situation).
* According to statistics collected by Creator/BioWare, the vast majority of people who played ''VideoGame/MassEffect2'' picked Soldier, the first class on the list. More stats released after ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'' also revealed that 82% of players used a Male Shepard, and it's probably likely a big chunk of these players simply went with the default setting (which was a Male Soldier modeled after Mark Vanderloo's face).
* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins'' was similarly slanted in favor of Human Nobles.
* In-universe example: In the Halo series, when Master Chief takes over a Covenant ship, Cortana finds that she can get vastly better performance out of it just by tweaking the settings. The Covenant believed the ships were holy relics left to them by the Forerunners, you see, and any modification of them would be blasphemy of the highest order, so it stayed on the factory defaults.
* This is probably why many of the now-rare ''VideoGame/VirtualOn'' arcade cabinets reported the most scores and plays with Temjin; it's the first Virtuaroid on the screen, though it doesn't hurt that it's also a well-balanced JackOfAllStats.

!!Non-video game examples:


[[folder: Web Comics ]]

* In ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'', an in-universe example - [[http://www.egscomics.com/egsnp/?date=2005-06-14 Newspaper arc]] "Dan in the {{MUD}}".
* Go to [[http://memegenerator.net memegenerator]]. Choose any "character" that has multiple templates. Observe that virtually all captioned images are the first in the non-cycling series.


[[folder: Software ]]

* Starting with Office 97, Microsoft included the now-infamous "Office Assistants". There were numerous assistants (including a robot and a caricature of Creator/WilliamShakespeare), but the default was a paperclip. However, most people, annoyed by the [[AnnoyingVideoGameHelper feature]], never bothered to change it and it's still remembered by most people as "the paperclip"
* The taskbar on all Windows products is at the bottom of the screen by default, and almost everyone keeps it there. One Microsoft Blog post spoke of the advantages of having the taskbar on the side in Windows 7, but since the vast majority of users kept theirs at the bottom in prior versions, changing the default would cause major DamnYouMuscleMemory issues, to the point that even in Windows 8, which has such issues with nearly everything else, the taskbar is still at the bottom by default.


[[folder: Tabletop Games ]]

* In ''TabletopGame/{{Space 1889}}'' the vast majority of adventures are set on Mars so most gamemasters will make stories and players will create characters for this environment despite the fact that there are other really cool and interesting places.


[[folder: Pinball ]]

* Creator/{{Stern}} is aware of this trope and has implemented ways to deal with it:
** Knowing newcomers stepping up to the ''Pinball/{{ACDC}}'' pinball machine wouldn't know you could pick a song, which prioritizes different playfield elements for jackpots, when the player is asked to pick a song, the machine randomizes where on the list it begins. Of course, that didn't solve the problem of people never looking up at the display and not even knowing they could pick a song, then wondering why their game wouldn't start, which leads to...
** The Casual Mode for their ''Pinball/GameOfThrones'' pinball machine, where it is [[EnforcedTrope enforced]]: Ordinarily, you can pick your house to be aligned with before when you begin a game (which creates slight changes to the rules and affects the order of modes available to play), but knowing people not into pinball would never know they have a choice in the matter, Casual Mode always begins with House Stark and begins the game immediately. Taken one step further here too: In early rule sets, ''Game of Thrones'' would be on Casual Mode by default (as they knew such people wouldn't know there is a Casual Mode otherwise), though it was changed in an update patch later on that allows the operator to specify whether to have Casual Mode or regular mode as the default.


[[folder: Miscellanous ]]

* When a question has multiple choice answers (be it a survey, test, or even a vote) listing any choice first makes it more likely for people to take it.
* The Australian electoral system, which combines compulsory voting with a preferential voting system, has the problem of so-called "donkey voting", where people alienated from the political system simply write one-two-three-four-five... in the boxes on the ballot paper from top to bottom. The impact of this can be discerned in electoral results, and to try to counteract this on a national level the order of candidates on the ballot papers for each constituency is randomised.