Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?

aka: Most Likely To Punch Out Cthulhu

"Now watch closely, everyone. I'm going to show you how to kill a god."

In short, you just killed a god.

This appears in videogames (especially RPGs), where the Final Boss is inevitably some kind of Ultimate Evil unleashed upon the world, or the Big Bad has ascended to godhood and gone One-Winged Angel... only to be defeated by the heroes by whittling down its health points. Particularly jarring if the horror in question is allegedly so powerful that according to the backstory the Precursors were only able to seal it away, or if the heroes claim it was defeated via The Power of Friendship (when it's obvious they won via the Power Of BFS, More Dakka, and Nuke-Level Summon Magic). Sometimes, you actually do kill God Himself, which is commonplace in JRPGs.

Maybe the heroes have found some rule stating that the power in question has limits or a Necessary Drawback, and then proceed to exploit it ruthlessly. Maybe Cthulhu Had The Flu. Sometimes what they defeated was just part of the being which existed in our reality at the time, in which case reducing its Hit Points to 0 just temporarily banishes it: they were Fighting a Shadow.

This is generally the result of whenever you put an Eldritch Abomination from a cynical world in the same room as a Super Hero from an idealistic world, or anyone or anything else capable of hitting For Massive Damage. Do not expect this trope to appear in any Cosmic Horror Story worth its salt, except perhaps as a Hope Spot that will most likely end with you getting your arm broken punching out the abomination, if you even win at all.

A common Hand Wave in video games (RPGs in particular) is to have something happen that relates to the story and limits the Big Bad's power and/or brings the heroes up to its level... then pummel it with improbably large swords and nuclear-apocalypse-level magic.

For the most extreme video-game examples, where the game designers intended for a character to be indestructible and players manage to kill it anyway, see Lord British Postulate.


Alternative Title(s):

Punch Out A God, Most Likely To Punch Out Cthulhu, Oh My Kenny They Killed God, Did You Just Mop Out Cthulhu