Yet more meaningless endeavours?
Need to stretch the story out a bit?
Simple: Send the protagonist on a Fetch Quest.
A Fetch Quest is a subquest of the overreaching plot which must be completed in order to trigger a vital Event Flag
. Find a key, save a kid lost in the cave, defeat the monster attacking the town, rescue the trapped workers, resolve an Adventure Town's
problem ... each of these is a Plot Coupon
. Fetching back the coupons is name of the game.
Games will often use a Broken Bridge
to browbeat you into solving a Fetch Quest even if you should intuitively have more important things to do.
This is also known as a FedEx quest, since they often consist of little more than receiving an object
from an NPC
and taking it to a particular person or place or going to a particular place and bringing back an object. The people, places, and objects themselves are largely inconsequential — you're just their mail carrier.
Sometimes it will provide essential exposition of the plot's backstory which would otherwise be awkward, obvious, or tedious if delivered another way, say by a monologue delivered by an NPC.
Novels, episodic shows and games rely on these as subplots quite frequently.
Extend this ad infinitum, and you get a Chain of Deals
. Twenty Bear Asses
is the variant where you have to collect a given number of objects dropped by enemies, and is much more popular with developers than players.
Video Game Examples
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- The Devil May Cry games often calls on these; in fact, many a Boss Battle kicks off when you retrieve the quest object, Nightmare in the first game being notoriously bad about this.
- The "To D'ni" expansion set to Uru: Ages Beyond Myst is basically one of these. It leads to a bit of extra backstory and of course new areas to explore.
- The 1999 PC adventure game Outcast was essentially a gigantic series of nested fetch quests, and played like a flowchart. For example, Level One required the player to visit a character who would ask you to find another character who would request an object and then ask you to see a third character who asked you to find an object from a fourth character; at that point you had to find a series of keys which allowed you to retrieve an object which you had to take to a further character who would ask you to retrieve some stones; and then you had to visit some more characters who would ask you to visit another character who would send you to visit another character who required a certain object before he would give you a message to deliver for another character who would ask you to find some dynamite. At that point you were roughly three-quarters of the way through level one. There were five levels, which continued in the exact same vein.
- One of the first quests you get in Quest for Glory I. A healer living just outside the First Town asks you to retrieve her golden ring, which quickly turns out to have been stolen by a small reptilian bird living in a tree outside the healer's hut. If you're a magic user, the solution to this side-quest is to cast a "FETCH" spell on the bird's nest.
- In Discworld II, Rincewind actually manages to complain his way out of an arbitrary fetch quest. The other character gives in and just gives him the item he's holding without having him bring him anything in return.
- If you're not in court, this is the only other gaming aspect of Ace Attorney: Fetching information/items and presenting them to other people for even more information.
- Parodied in Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People. Strong Sad keeps sending Strong Bad on pointless fetch quests to find thing like "The Sigil of Dark Dampening" and "The Shimmering Trinket of Endless Bargain-Hunting." The reward for each quest? Another fetch quest, to fetch the next item! All of these are, in fact, the same item that keeps respawning in the same location. The only way to break this chain is to give Strong Sad a different item that will cause the King of Town to attack him.
- Indiana Jones and His Desktop Adventures: You're going to meet a lot of people whose only function is to stand around (often surrounded by monsters and enemies who inexplicably ignore them), ask you for a specific item, and give you another in return.
- The Night Of The Rabbit: You need to gather some ingredients in order to get the medicine and the cake, which are needed to advance the plot.
- Used in the DS Snk Vs Capcom CARD GAME, of all places, because the AI is so poor the game would be over in about 2 hours without it (there's an exploit to defeat any opponent in 3 turns, including the final boss). A player cannot get past the gate keeper without spending hours farming for 3 rare cards. And then it needs to be done later on. Oh how fun.
- This is lampshaded to hell and back in the Telltale Sam & Max: Freelance Police games, where half the gameplay is about getting or giving something. In one episode, Sam and Max hear the setup for a fetch quest (get ingredients for an exotic cake they need), and instantly accept it, but are told that it wouldn't matter anyway because the cake would take more than a day to make and they don't have time to wait.
- Ubiquitious in the Learning Company's Edutainment Game series The Clue Finders. One game, The Clue Finders Search and Solve Adventures, even Lampshaded it:
Joni: I think we're gonna need to find some keys to open these boxes.
LapTrap: Oh, of course! Why can't it be easy for once?
Owen: Hey, it's no fun if it's too easy, dude.
Joni: Yeah, the tougher, the better.
LapTrap: Oh, great! Here we go again.
- An odd subversion of one is in Deus Ex Nihilum. A bum will ask the player for a pack of cigarettes in exchange for a key to break into the XVA building. If the player lacks the cigarettes, the bum will congratulate the player on being health conscious, and give away the key anyways.
- The Metroid Prime games are often criticized for the fetch quests they use (Chozo Artifacts, Sky Temple Keys, Energy Cells, Octoliths) to increase play time before the final boss, although it's only particularly annoying in Prime 2 (where you can't get most of these Plot Coupons until the very moment right before the final battle). Prime 3 takes a more accessible approach as getting the cells is almost mandatory to finish certain tasks, so you'll only have to backtrack once or twice instead of nine or twelve times. Word of God says that the reason for the fetch quests was to allow you to have more time with the fully upgraded Samus, though probably padding too.
- Both System Shock 2 and its Spiritual Successor, BioShock, feature many of these. Your very *first* objective in SS2 is: 'Find the guy who has the key to this section of the ship, which contains this other guy who has the code you need to go down a level, where you can fix the elevator so you can go up a level...' Naturally it only gains more layers of complications as you progress. System Shock 2 actually gets less complicated as you progress. In fact, once you reach the sixth deck of the Von Braun, your objectives basically boil down to "Get in the escape shuttle, kill shit." BioShock 1 provides the player the opportunity to learn more about events before their arrival in Rapture by collecting recordings they encounter as they progress through each Fetch Quest. Collecting all of them nets you an achievement.
- Done in Stalker, your chance of finding said item is very low if you actually looking for it and each quest has a time limit. Generally you are better off finding an object and then seeing if anyone else is looking for it.
- A few quests in Borderlands require fetching. TK Baha runs you on at least two: collecting food stolen by skags, and collecting brains in the Zombie Island of Dr. Ned DLC. The second one is tricky; any quest items you pick up before getting the quest(s) don't count toward the prerequisite.
- The entirety of the "story" of TimeSplitters, as well as a couple of the multiplayer modes.
- Dark Forces. "Find the red key card" turns out you need three separate blue key cards to open the secret door that contains the red key card, which is locked in a hidden vault seven floors away from the door the red key card opens in the first place, but that's okay, since the only purpose in opening the red key card door is to get the green key card which opens the exit back on floor seven.
- Jedi Academy mocks this:
Kyle: They always lock the door. You'd think they'd have learned by now. Doesn't look like there's a key — that would be too easy. The console to unlock the door is probably hidden in some room twelve floors up or something... how does that make sense?
Four X Games
- Though all the X-Universe games have the normal variety of Fetch Quests (typically it's "pick up a delivery" or "gather up some materials from wherever"), X3: Terran Conflict ups the ante with a Fetch Plot. To repair the Hub, a control center for the game's Portal Network, Mahi Ma will have you gather (in chronological order) 400 computer components, 500 microchips, 10,000 energy cells, 150,000 teladianium (a ceramic used for structural components), 450,000 ore, 500 nividium, 250,000 crystals, 15 million credits (to pay a Paranid scientist for his help), 400,000 silicon wafers, and 75,000 more microchips. Finishing the plot in a timely fashion (as in, less than several months in Real Life) requires the player to build his own infrastructure to supply the materials. The good news is, the Hub is an extremely useful structure able to arbitrarily connect up to three jumpgate pairs through its sector, and the infrastructure you build to repair it will make ludicrous amounts of money afterwards.
- Parodied (like every other video game trope) in Progress Quest. Quests are made from two randomized components, Action and Item. One of the possible actions is Fetch Me an [Item].
- Makes up 90% of Heros Realm's final act. The player is tasked with fetching the ultimate equipment from every corner of the earth...for someone else to use.
- Subverted in both of the Sluggish Morss games.
- In the first, while the protagonist is meant to obtain coins, there is by and large no real reason for collecting them. It's largely a But Thou Must sort of deal.
- In the second, one person won't let the main character pass without gathering four of a certain item. The character is later told that said items don't actually exist.
- City of Heroes has many of these, often as a part of a story arc or task force. City of Villains not nearly as many, but they're still there. Sometimes called "Bathroom break" missions when in a group because one person can usually take care of it.
- The game often attempts to spice these missions up by having a group of enemy forces spawn to ambush the player. Since skilled characters with the right powers can move something like a hundred and eighty miles per hour in this game, the most common actual result is the ambush to spawn, be left in the dust without the player even noticing them, and ultimately make life very "interesting" for some much lower level character who blunders into them.
- The freeware MMORPG Kingdom of Loathing frequently uses these, but also makes fun of them in the process. At the start of the Level 2 quest, the Council of Loathing tells you "We need a mosquito larva. Don't ask why, because we won't tell you." At one stage in the Level 11 quest, your character, upon being told he must paint a red door black to prove his worthiness for no particular reason, says "Are you sure you're not just taking the opportunity to have me do some menial jobs while I'm here?" Also from the level 11 quest, you are tasked at one point to retrieve fifteen pages from a book. After finding the first two pages, you find the third through fifteenth pages all at once, and the game remarks "Okay, I guess it's not going to take as long as you thought."
- The last one is a sendup of a pair of particularly annoying fetch quests in World of Warcraft. In each one, every single enemy in the zone has a minute chance of dropping one of about 12 pages from a book. Add this to the fact that you can get multiples of the same page, and you have a recipe for aggravation.
- You can auction those extra pages for much more than you can get with a sale to a vendor. That makes it a little bit less aggravating.
- One of the Silverspring quest chains from Runes Of Magic is something along these lines. You have to retrieve pages of a history book that was stolen by bandits, and every bandit you kill yields a page. Sometimes you'll get the same page from different bandits, though the game does allow you to sell off any excess pages in any shop you can find.
- Guild Wars: Nightfall: while the entire series is filled with fetch quests, one NPC is more than happy to go and collect the item they need by themselves (also dodging a potential Escort Mission in the process) while leaving you with the relatively "easy" task of guarding the ruins that is supposed to be their charge. Needless to say, once the NPC is out of sight, you get to earn your quest reward.
- World of Warcraft. If you're not killing something, you're killing something and stealing its stuff.
- An especially silly example: One quest requires turtle meat from the nearby river and spices... which the Quest NPC sells to you.
- Different, but no less silly: Shuttling messages between two questgivers that are anywhere from shouting distance to ten feet apart.
- The same, and a complete pain in the ass: Killing something for body parts that it can't live without, and the amount of work you have to do is best summed up by: <# of mobs you have to kill> = <# required of the item that keeps the mob alive> X 100. Headless Raptors, although legless Zhevra and the many bird-species that sometimes lack any feathers at all deserve mentions (even though you just saw them flying or running).
- Hilariously and mercilessly parodied in RuneScape's infamously long quest one small favour, which takes the adventurer from the far southern tropical continent of Karamja, literally from one end of the mainland to another. The quest text itself will taunt you about how mundane it feels for a mighty adventurer to carry around a rust bucket, a pot lid, sharpening tools worth pocket change, a few chickens, gnome tea, the medieval equivalent of aspirin (a taunt on how this part of the quest makes player sick of it, perhaps), a weathervane, the medieval equivalent to screw eight lightbulbs, and a mattress. Also averted, as out of 160+ quests in the game, there are 3 Fetch Quests (One Small Favour, Rune Mysteries, Cook's Assistant, the latter two being some of the first quests ever made)
- If you want to see how bad this trope can possibly get, go sign up for the browser-based MMORPG Travians. The Fetch Quest is its bread-and-butter, and it's layered on top of Broken Bridges and Insurmountable Waist High Fences everywhere. Not to mention Red Herrings (if an NPC says he won't talk to you because you're a "swineherd," this does not mean you've finally found a reason to drop your pig off at the woman who keeps asking you if you want to leave your pig with her). Here's a sample:
- Most of the quests are triggered by you being a certain age (in days). So if you've done all the quests up to a certain point, you may not be able to do another quest for three or four days. There is no way of telling this in advance from the game itself.
- Also, maybe half the quests are revealed randomly by talking to NPC's. (Yes, yes, ''WorldOfWarcraft'' does this too, but then WoW manages to stick enough quests all over the place to make it worth your while; Travians has no Side Quests and only ever one quest at a time.) Most obstacles are either randomly cleared (which you don't know until you run over there) or randomly opened up by your presence (you've gained enough strength to move boulders now = believable; you suddenly possess the know-how to fix bridges but FYI can't fix the identical bridge on the other side of the map). So if you want to do each quest as soon as you can, and don't resort to hints, the only course of action is to log in each day and run around the entire map talking to each and every NPC and approaching each obstacle on the slim hope that one of them might possibly start up a quest or open up a new area for you. That is, if it's not one of those days when you don't have any quests at all (and the Support Chat moderators counsel you to "be patient").
- Quest: Sell 20 bottles of Olive Oil.
- Reason this is infuriating: There aren't anything like 20 NPC's in the entire game. And of the maybe five you can talk to, two of them respond to your sales pitch with "Never!" or "I hate olive oil!" It might appear that you're supposed to return to the three who'll (occasionally) buy once a day to sell them new bottles; certainly one of their responses is "I have enough for now" or "I don't have enough money for another bottle right now." No; the solution is to badger them into submission via the age-old tricks of telemarketing. That is, when she says "I have enough" or he says "Um, no, not right now," you simply ask them again. Until they buy. And then ask them again. Until they buy more. Ergo, your role in this quest works out to:
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: Not right now.
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: I don't have the money.
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: Okay, fine, I guess I'll take a bottle just to get you off my back.
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: What? No! I just bought some! I have enough!
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: Go away!
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: Okay, fine, here, I'll take another bottle.
You: Want to buy some Olive Oil?
He: What do you want from me??!!
- Just completing this quest made me feel dirty.
- Some olive oil will get that dirt right out. Buy a bottle.
- Quest: Get the three parts of a password from three NPC's. Each NPC says "Not until you gather 5 of Resource X" (wheat, clay, ore, whatever - different for each NPC).
- Reason this is infuriating: You have two occupations in the game, and having an occupation means you gather X resource way better than any other resource (something like 20-to-1 ratio). Gathering any resource outside your occupation is a total waste of OP (occupation points), all the more since you can buy any of the resources at the Player Market or NPC Market as needed. But the NPC's for this quest don't want you to bring them Resource X, they don't want you to use Resource X, they just want you to pointless waste 5 OP to gather Resource X. Which never comes into play during the quest. At all.
- Quest: Talk to uppity girl in the southeast corner of the map. What Guide Dang It might tell you: You need to be wearing a Silver Cape to do so (she won't talk to you otherwise). So the quest is really: Find Silver Cape.
- Reason this is infuriating: Firstly, without Guide Dang It, the way to discover the underlying quest is to return to an out-of-the-way NPC whose quest you just completed and who you thought you'd never mess with again. Secondly, the quest goes like this: Start with out-of-the-way NPC in SSE corner of map. Return to main tavern at North edge of map. Grinning git there actually has the cape, but won't tell you until you've run to five or six other NPC's at all corners of the map and returned twice to the starting tavern (the first time to talk to the innkeeper, who sends you off on another wild goose chase; the second time to talk to the grinning git and get the cape).
- In EVE Online, your agent's division determines how many Fetch Quests you get. Note that the difference between Courier missions and Mining missions is the former is the typical A and transport (an) item(s) to B while the latter is go to location A, mine a specific mineral (usually along the lines of thousands of units of ore), and take it to B. Effectively, they are both Fetch Quests.
- The Lord of the Rings Online has a particularly annoying subtype which fortunately doesn't come up that often. In this version if something interrupts you while you're carrying item X, whether it's an attack or, in the case of two much-dreaded Shire quest chains, nosy/hungry hobbits, you drop the item and have to go back and accept the quest all over again. Throw in the time limit and you've got That One Sidequest in multiples.
- Taken to great lengths in Star Fox Adventures. At one point you need to recover cogs to get a bridge to work. Most items in the game are held over Fox's head as he stares at it in awe (likely a reference, mocking or otherwise, to the 3D Zelda games), and the bridge cogs are no exception. Each bridge cog, as you collect them.
- La-Mulana has two of these, each made aggravating by the lack of a convenient Grail Point.
- Epic Mickey. Good lord. In order to advance to new areas, you need to supply the gnomes with Power Cells (or whatever those things are) to activate the machine. Several people in town have Cells, but they won't simply give them to you, sending you on your merry way to gather whatever they want. In the 2D side-scroller levels, you can also pick up film reels to trade in for tickets, Cells, or unlockable content. Not only that, but animatronic Goofy, Donald, and Daisy had their limbs/torsos torn off and scattered around in certain levels, forcing you to get them if you want the best ending. To put it simply, if you're not killing Blotlings or fixing/destroying the landscape, you're fetching items.
- The majority of Sonic the Hedgehog (2006) has you spending time in a drab, lifeless, Dreamcast-era town completing brainless Fetch Quests for nameless, faceless NPCs. None of the quests have any storyline significance and are all there for the sake of Fake Longevity. They barely reward the player with anything vital for the main quest, and yet are all necessary to unlock main-story missions. It also doesn't help that even Sonic and his friends themselves have no story-significance to the human Damsel Scrappy's mysterious past!
- The entirity of the first Tak and the Power of Juju game is a long string of fetch quests. First, you gotta get a staff from a nearby graveyard and collect a bunch of magic flowers in order to remove the sheep curse from Lok. Then go to the nearby village and get the Spirit Rattle. Then traipse around the entire game world to get 100 Yorbels, and then get Lok's spirit from the Spirit world to bring him back from the dead. Then go to the temples and collect the Moonstones. Then you can go and fight the final boss. That final fight is the only time in the game when you're not being told to go and collect something.
- Subverted in Psychosomnium. A trio of rabbits demands carrots before they'll let you pass. They then mention, however, that carrots don't exist, and thus you're doomed to failure. The only way to get past is to kill them.
- Cave Story has a few of these. In one early level, a robot asks you to bring three items so it can make a bomb. In the following level, an old woman makes you track down her five lost puppies one by one.
- In Kirby's Dream Land 3, there's always at least one fetch quest per world which requires you to grab something and take it to the Quest Giver at the end of the level. The most intricate one is the black pyramid in Sand Canyon, which requires you to do some tricky puzzle solving to grab the pieces of Nintendo's iconic R.O.B. peripheral, but you have to do it in a specific order in order to complete it.
- Puzzle Quest has quite a few sidequests of this type, but givies you the choice of returning the item for the reward... or keeping it yourself.
- The 11th Hour takes this to a ridiculous extreme. Ostensibly, the point of the game is to run around solving puzzles like its predecessor, The 7th Guest. However, in T11H, all solving a room's puzzle does is open it up to examination; this is where the fetching comes into play, as Carl's GameBook is sent various messages which are supposed to guide him to touch a particular object and get rewarded with a clip of video showing some backstory.
- 60% of Animal Crossing is nothing but long, drawn out, randomly generated fetch quest where someone borrowed something, and lent it to someone and then someone stole it from them, etc. Which leads you through almost everyone into the village to get someone's [random Nintendo product] back in exchange for the original guy to give you some throwaway carpet or piece of furniture that you probably didn't want to begin with.
- Thankfully toned down in the sequels, which now only has you go from person A, to person B, then back to person A with the item in tow.
- In The Sims Bustin' Out for the GBA, some quests have you involve grabbing something like an urn to give to a ghost in order to proceed. You can also ask others for an errand, and upon completion, you get a bit of money. Helpful when you begin the game and have little cash, but next to useless later, because you get better jobs eventually.
- Many quests in The Sims Medieval have "get Object X" as a step. Sometimes Object X can be acquired in the village shop, but often the Sim will have to harvest it or obtain it from an NPC.
- Shaun White Snowboarding had the player traipsing around the mountain for coins in order to unlock the next mountain. Seriously.
- In Backyard Skateboarding, you must find the key to Shark Belly Shores in the Boardwalk before beating the Tour Guide Challenge, which unlocks the next level.
- This actually happens many, many times in the game.
- Assassin's Creed I is positively loaded with pointless and mindlessly repetitive fetch quests, a flaw nigh unforgivable to some in an otherwise excellent game. The most blatant example is probably the "informant" quest where you have to gather up approx. 10-15 Masyaf flags scattered around the general area. This can be partially justified in that one of the informants seems to genuinely hate the main character's guts and would no doubt relish the opportunity to make Altair's life needlessly complicated by sending him on pointless fetch quests. But then there's the informant who claims to have "dropped" his massive bundle of Masyaf flags which somehow scattered them all over an entire city block, including a few that launched themselves onto the rooftops of several buildings.
- Brotherhood brings them back, but fortunately as sidequests for Tiber Island shopkeepers. The stuff you get from completing them, while nice to have, are optional.
- Thief had one in the level "Return to the Cathedral". Your goal in this level is to steal a gem called the Eye from a church full of undead. This is, on the whole, pretty simple and takes maybe ten minutes if done properly. Then if you try to exit out the door you unlocked to get in, you find it's sealed for absolutely no reason. You have to spend a further twenty or thirty minutes wandering around the monastery behind the Cathedral, dodging more undead, as you collect the necessary items for a consecration ritual for a dead priest. Only after doing this will the priest's ghost give you the means to escape the area.
- Used throughout Penumbra's trilogy, and lampshaded by Clarence in Black Plague
Clarence: Christ! Go here, go there, fetch this, run me a bath... typical broad, atypical circumstances.
- The Resident Evil games were basically one huge Fetch Quest until Four came out and went full action. Each game consisted of finding keys or random items to open locks and traps, while trying to stay alive in the meantime.
- Fire Emblem: Blazing Sword has one of these around the late middle of the game: you have to find the Fire Emblem so that Prince Zephiel's coming-of-age ceremony can be held and the Bernese nobles will tell you where to find the Shrine of Seals, where Bramimond (who is the only one who can unseal the sealed legendary weapons lies. It's really not much more than an attempt to get the Fire Emblem into the game, since it has to be in every game, as well as show us Zephiel before he becomes a warmongering maniac who wants to wipe out humankind in FE6, since 7 is a prequel.
Wide Open Sandbox
- Overtime Mode in Dead Rising is almost all Fetch Quest. Like the rest of the game, it's also a Timed Mission. What makes it bad is that while the first half of the Fetch Quest is gathering key items, the second half requires you to collect ten queens, which are inventory items, and therefore the special forces will take them away if they get you before you get them back to Isabella.
- In Dead Rising 2 - Case Zero, the overarching fetch quest is gathering parts to fix a motorcycle so you can get out of zombie-infested Still Creek. The drawback here is that every bike part is treated as a large item, meaning that you'll drop it if you get grabbed or cycle through your inventory on the way back to the garage.
- The Xenon Hub mission from Egosoft's X3:Terran Conflict. The development team in charge was definitely up against a looming deadline and the executive powers-that-be responsible for approving or vetoing the idea looked at the proposed mission and said, "Seeing as how no one has a better idea, let's put this in the game." The player has to provide: 400 units of microchips; 500 units computer components; 450,000 units of Ore; 150,000 units Teladianium; 500 units Nividium; 750,000 crystals; 400,000 units Silicon Wafers; 85,000 more microchips; and pay an NPC 15,000,000 credits.
- Even the developers have had to admit that the Hub mission is over the top — several of the game's patches have reduced the requirements. A little.
- Harvest Moon: The Tale of Two Towns has a "requests board" in both towns, with several classes of requests ranging in rarity, quantity and quality of the items requested. Anything "B Class" and above is a Luck-Based Mission, as villagers will often ask for items that aren't in season, can only be procured under special circumstances or that you simply aren't able to manufacture yet. Presumably, you're supposed to use the Wi-Fi connection to try and trade for such items.
Non-Video Game Examples
Live Action TV
- House: Bring me the thong... of Lisa Cuddy. This turns out to be a subversion: while the other applicants try to get the thong by trickery or fake getting the thong by using their own underwear, "Big Love" gets the thong by simply asking Cuddy for it. When it becomes clear that Big Love only got the thong by agreeing to eliminate who Cuddy wanted eliminated, House chastises him for playing by Cuddy's rules instead of his and promptly eliminates Big Love instead.
- The Amazing Race: Get Object A, take to Location B to receive your next clue, return to starting point to retrieve your teammate.
- The Irish legend of The Sons Of Tuirenn. They are tricked into a series of dangerous fetch quests by Lugh the Long Hand, for having murdered Lugh's father Cian. The brothers forget the last item, and things do not end well.
- In Popeye Saves The Earth, Sea Hag Multiball is started after the player collects four items (a Can Opener, Baby Bottle, Ketchup, and Flower); it's completed by returning the items to their respective owners (Popeye, Swee'Pea, Wimpy, and Olive Oyl).
- Webcomic Order of the Stick has An example of someone invoking this trope. Nale send Roy off to find Starmetal in order to buy time to rebuild his Linear Guild. He had no idea that Starmetal was real. He thought it was just a legend.
- Gold Coin Comics does this as a sidequest when Lance must undergo a fetch quest from an NPC.
- When Torg plays a MMORPG in Sluggy Freelance he finds the initial Fetch Quest very underwhelming.
The Duke: Bring me five red salamander tongues.
Torg: Salamander tongues?
The Duke: Yes.
Torg: That will help "rid the evil"?
The Duke: You're wielding a stick. Start with salamanders.
- The main plot of The Burned is completely focused on the main character, Hunter Kirizaki, fetching fifteen magical weapons that could, if left unchecked, probably End of the World as We Know It
- 8 Bit Theater: Red Mage embarks solo on an unsuccessful one in this strip.
- Battle Of Olympus has a few but everything is just a way to get into Tartarus to confront Hades.
- During the first movie arc in Darths and Droids, the main characters are given a minor quest to find the Lost Orb of Phanasticoria by Boss Nass, and throughout the entire story, they fluctuate between obsessing over finding it and forgetting what it is. They also (humorously) forget it's name various times. It turns out to be a Macguffin that was part of the GM's plan all along.
Jim (as Padme): Y'know, that Orb of Fantastic Irrelevance.
- This submission to a Cracked photoplasty contest. In case the link doesn't work, it's number 18.