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[[quoteright:350:[[VideoGame/RedFaction http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/lethal-joke-item_red-faction-armageddon2_8112.png]]]]
[-[[caption-width-right:350:Gives the "Taste The Rainbow" mantra [[{{Fartillery}} a whole new meaning]].]]-]

->''"Ultimate! Co-Op! Weapon! '''HUMAN SLINGSHOT!'''"''
-->-- ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolidPeaceWalker'', when four players combine [[FastballSpecial the co-op slingshot]]

So, you found a worthless JokeItem after hours of grinding and beating the BonusBoss at the bottom of the BonusLevelOfHell. Its stats suck, it looks like a wet noodle, and everyone comments how stupid it looks.

You may as well try it out- WHOA! [[DidYouJustPunchOutCthulhu Did you just]] {{curb stomp|Battle}} ThatOneBoss [[OneHitKill in a single round]] [[WithThisHerring using a mop!?]] Maybe there's more to this than meets the eye.

The Lethal Joke Item seems ridiculous at first, but it has a hidden property that overshadows your other, more mundane items when used. This "hidden property" is always in play, though it may need some RequiredSecondaryPowers to employ properly.

Compare LethalJokeCharacter, where the "item" is an actual character. The equivalent outside of video games is HeartIsAnAwesomePower. Contrast JokeItem, where the item has no actual use. If it starts out a joke but eventually 'unlocks' further potential through use, it's a case of MagikarpPower.

NotCompletelyUseless is like this, except [[ThisLooksLikeAJobForAquaman it only works on specific obstacles]] and ''is'' truly useless otherwise. If the "lethal" effect can be employed in most situations, [[RequiredSecondaryPowers even if it needs to be set up]], it's a Lethal Joke Item. If the effect can only be employed in certain situations, regardless of setup, then it's just NotCompletelyUseless.

If the item simply ''looks'' ridiculous but functions just as well as a normal item, it's a NerfArm.


[[folder:Examples A-F]]
%%* ''VideoGame/ActionDoom2UrbanBrawl'': One of the strongest melee weapons in the game is a cardboard tube.
* ''VideoGame/AncientDomainsOfMystery'':
** The wand of wonder has the ability to randomly cast any spell in the game, which is marginally useful in and of itself. However, it also instantly ''teaches'' the spell to your PC (just enough to cast it once or twice), even to classes that aren't supposed to be able to learn spells. You can cast from books without decreasing the spell marks; if you get lucky, find the right spellbook, and have enough power points, your mindcrafter can cast bolt spells.
** There's also an item that is literally called "Potion of Uselessness" that does nothing when drunk, applied to items, etc. However, there is a level towards the end of the game with icy floors, and the only way to move around is by throwing items (to propel yourself in the opposite direction). Throwing the aforementioned useless potion to move yourself will result in your God rewarding you with one of the game's uber-powerful artifacts, with the on-screen messages:
* In ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedII'', the broom (or "Doom Broom", in some circles) acquired by bumping store owners holding them was treated as both a sword and a hammer for the purpose of counters. Since all of the counters but the ones that just knock the enemy down are 1-hit kills, the broom becomes laughably powerful. See that elite-looking guard in massive shining armor that dwarfs normal guards' armor? Let him strike at you and then counter, and if you are lucky (as in, not unlucky), you will hit them in the (armored) gut with the soft bristles and proceed to finish them off with an upswing that should merely give your enemy's helmet a dusting. Or, if you are really lucky, you will finish them off by slicing into their neck and pulling it out with a glorious spin. And yes, blood will fly if it is turned on.
* The Fang in ''[[VideoGame/BackyardSports Backyard Baseball]]''. It will always be a ball, but the batter will normally swing at it, resulting in a strike.
* The ''VideoGame/BaldursGate'' series:
** A pair of Golden Pantaloons can be found early in the first game, and have no obvious purpose. In the second game, one can also find the Silver Pantaloons and the Bronze Pantaloons as well. If you managed to get all three items, they can be used to create the most powerful armor as well as a couple weapons near the end of Throne of Bhaal, the last add-on. Overall the difference to standard equipment isn't that huge, though; the weapons especially aren't that useful.
** In the second part of ''Baldurs Gate'', you can also learn the spell "Limited Wish", which gives you (depending on your Wisdom) a number of dialogue options to be granted as wishes. If your wisdom score is really low, you may demand to be "protected from undead right now", which summons 6 hostile vampires. Combine this with the fact that evil clerics can control undead of lower level and you got yourself a free army of bloodsuckers (completely ignoring the ArbitraryHeadcountLimit).
** Somewhere approaching this trope lies another item. In ''Baldur's Gate 1'', you can find "Arrows of Detonation" that explode into a 30-foot fireball when they hit something. In ''Throne of Bhaal'' you can find the ''Club'' of Detonation.. .very dangerous usually. Very useful if you've got over 100% fire resistance.
* ''VideoGame/TheBindingOfIsaac'' ''loves'' this trope, employing many pick-ups that are nigh-useless except when combined with specific characters or other pick-ups. Examples include the Dead Cat, which grants the player 9 lives but reduces them to one HeartContainer (and resets them back to one upon each death.) More trouble than it's worth normally, unless you're playing as ??? (who can't collect {{Heart Container}}s and has to subsist on Soul Hearts) and The Lost (who's already a OneHitPointWonder.) There's also the Cursed Skull, which ejects you from the room you're in whenever you take a hit and is reviled because getting ejected causes you to lose all your progress in that room, but if it's combined with the Scapular (which grants you 1 Soul Heart upon entering a new room if you're below one heart's worth of normal health) the player becomes unkillable.
* In ''Videogame/{{Borderlands 2}}'', players completing the mission called "The Bane" are awarded an SMG with the same name. Those who try it despite its terrible stats will find it: '''a)''' reduces your movement speeds to a crawl when held, and '''b)''' the gun makes [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NWYjLurySU0 horrible screaming noises]] when it's fired and reloaded [[DevelopersForesight (even if you change the game's volume settings)]]. Players who persist will find that the gun's stats are much better than listed, and it deals fantastic damage for an SMG -- albeit at the cost of getting you kicked if you ever use it in multiplayer. Being a Hyperion brand gun, The Bane becomes more accurate the longer it fires and due to its large ammo count you can shoot quite a few rounds before you have to reload. Combine with Maya's perks that boost elemental damage or Gaige's "Anarchy" ability to get the most bang for your buck.
* Unlockable only after reaching the highest level of Prestige, the [=MP44=] in ''VideoGame/CallOfDuty 4: VideoGame/ModernWarfare'' is both a JokeWeapon and a CallBack to the [=WW2=] roots of the franchise. Players often disregard it, as it can't accept any attachments and it lacks the accuracy of other weapons. However, it is one of the most powerful automatic weapons in the game. With the Stopping Power perk in place, it can kill Juggernauts in three or four shots.
* ''Franchise/{{Castlevania}}'':
** The key subweapon in ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaRondoOfBlood'' and ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaDraculaX'' is mainly for opening a few locked doors, but like all other subweapons, it has an Item Crash. The key's Item Crash looks silly (Richter or Maria rises into the air with the key in hand, then falls with a question mark over their head), but you're invulnerable during the animation and it costs zero hearts, so you can dodge attacks with ease. The key also damages any enemies it directly touches while you're floating, and you float higher than a normal jump, so you can kill enemies on upper levels from below (again, for zero hearts).
** ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaSymphonyOfTheNight'' has the Alucart equipment, which is basically joke copies of the true Alucard equipment. They give you poor stats and shouldn't be used -- unless you use them all together, in which case your Luck is jacked up considerably (and your name in the status screen is Alucart!), making it much easier to get those random drops. Like the Crissaegrim.
** In ''VideoGame/CastlevaniaDawnOfSorrow'', you have the Waiter Skeleton soul. It throws out a plate of curry that acts as a landmine, causing damage to any enemy that touches it. The damage is minimal, it's a pain to get, it only stays for a few seconds, and it's less of a hassle to just smash something than hope the enemy walks across it. Then you meet the [[BossInMookClothing Iron Golem and Final Guard]], both of which move slowly and have titanic defense, and learn that a well-thrown plate of curry will hit them ''dozens'' of times, whittling their HP down far faster than almost any other weapon. It's also required to make the Yeti appear so that you can kill him and get his soul.
* In ''Videogame/DarkSoulsII'', the Handmaiden's Ladle is a weak and fragile "weapon". Its only advantage is that each attack with it has a very low stamina cost. Upgrading it to the Mundane type gives a fixed damage bonus to every attack that it won't lose if it breaks, so if all your stats are fairly high, it is very capable of a DeathOfAThousandCuts.
%%* The most useful weapon in ''VideoGame/DeadlyPremonition'' is a guitar. [[WildMassGuessing Maybe]] it's because your villainous counterpart in the game is armed with an [[IncrediblyLamePun axe?]]
* ''VideoGame/DeadRising'': A big element of the game is using lethal joke items. For example, the King Salmon. Sure, it breaks after two hits, but that one hit does happen to do more damage than a katana. Not terribly useful when surrounded by zombies, but when there's one psychopath with a huge lifebar around...
* ''VideoGame/{{Destiny}}'''s The Dark Below DLC added an exotic sniper rifle named No Land Beyond that could be equipped in the primary weapon slot. What made it a joke? The fact that it was bolt-action, with fire rate and damage far below what its stats suggested, iron sights that obscured whatever you were aiming at, and a tiny ammo capacity. At first it was exclusively used as a SelfImposedChallenge, but after No Land Beyond dodged several nerfs that made special ammo less abundant, had its sights changed, and with the players discovering a glitch to cancel the bolt animation and fire faster, the rifle actually became one of the most widely used snipers among skilled players.
* ''Franchise/{{Disgaea}}''
** ''VideoGame/Disgaea3AbsenceOfJustice'' has quite a few "joke" weapons of varying usefulness. Probably the best is the Puppy Paw Stick, which grants a 20% chance to steal a random piece of equipment from each enemy the wielder defeats. This is especially useful in the Class World, where the player can randomly encounter duplicates of the party member hosting the world, wearing duplicates of that character's gear.
%%** ''VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness'''s [[RefugeInAudacity Horse Wiener]].
** ''VideoGame/Disgaea4APromiseUnforgotten'', on the other hand, made it harder to pull that trick off. To obtain the PPS, you have to catch a Basset (Tier Six Nekomata) and hope that the chest contains the stick. Mind you, getting the stick in the last game only required you to beat a fairly easy post-game boss. As for fighting the duplicates, they appear a lot less, given the new system for the Character World.
* ''Franchise/DragonQuest''
** ''VideoGame/DragonQuestIII'' features a Noh Mask, which has the highest defense power of any item in the game, but makes the wearer permanently confused and spending most of their time attacking the other members of the party; however, a solo character can essentially fight normally being confused, making this item invaluable for very hardcore or very desperate players... or just to trivialize a certain dungeon only the Hero/ine may enter, as there are thus no party members to randomly target.
** The 3DS UpdatedRerelease of ''VideoGame/DragonQuestVIII'' has a downloadable candy cane weapon for Yangus, which is classified as a Scythe and [[CherryTapping always does 1 damage]]. However, if you have Yangus use [[VideoGameStealing (Stainless) Steal Sickle]] every turn with it equipped and have everyone else defend or heal Yangus, you can easily grind for {{Rare Random Drop}}s.
* The several editions of ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'' have had quite a few of these intended as such. Honestly, in the hands of a creative thinker, damn near '''anything''' could qualify.
** There's the "wand of wonder", an item that gives random effects when used -- one charge might crisp a baddie with a fireball, the next might replace the user's hair with flowers. For many players, it was too unpredictable... until the 2nd Edition ''Tome of Magic'' introduced the "Wild Mage" class, which has a chance of controlling the wand.
** The gray Bag of Tricks is an item that produces small animals that easily die, which can be used to distract a large group of guards and get them to leave their posts. Especially useful if combined with ghost sound to have the animal taunt the guards. It may not be a curb stomp, but it is using an item that is normally useless to high-level players to get into a place without having to fight. Also, a stronger version of the Bag of Tricks has a chance of summoning rhinos or elephants -- and there is no listed altitude limit as to where you can summon them.
** Darts were usually given to mages for when they ran out of magic missiles. However, in 2nd ed, with weapon proficiency rules, a haste spell and gloves of returning, and +5 darts in each hand, a dart-specced warrior could unload enough damage in one round to kill gods (provided he didn't fumble -- and he was critting on anything higher than a 2). Beware the dart warrior.
** The Tree Token is a one-use item that creates a large oak tree on command. Combine with a flying broom and a sorcerer who's run out of spell slots in high seas combat, and watch the DM's face [[DidntSeeThatComing contort with rage/go slack with shock]] as you ask, "What's the damage on [[TelephonePolearm a caber]]?" 30' oak trees are also useful when you realise a creature is lurking on the 20' high ceiling of a room.
** One ''D&D'' player reported in a comment on ''Webcomic/DMOfTheRings'' [[http://www.shamusyoung.com/twentysidedtale/?p=692 #17]] that an enchanted spoon that fills any vessel with gruel makes a decent dragonslaying tool. They had the cleric cast ''mud to stone'' until the dragon's cave was sealed, then made a small hole and stuck the spoon in it, drowning the dragon.
* ''VideoGame/DungeonsOfDredmor'': Plastic platemail has exactly the type of armor value you would expect... but lowers your dodge stat a lot less than other armors of similar protective value, making it highly useful for a dodge-specced build.
* ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'':
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'':
*** The Boots of Blinding Speed. [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin They're boots that let you run really fast, but blind you]]. However, a bit of Magicka resistance reduces or eliminates the Blinding effect, allowing you to move around very, very quickly without using fast travel. If you're a Vampire, these become borderline essential, as the fast travel [=NPCs=] won't talk to you.
*** The scrolls of Icarian Flight, which let you jump all the way across the continent in a single bound, zig-zag this trope; while at first glance they appear straightforwardly awesome, if you use one you find out that they are indeed lethal... to you, since they wear off before you hit the ground and lead to a generally-fatal impact. When combined with a Slow Fall or Levitation spell near the end of your jump, they become amazingly valuable... but there's only three in the entire game, so they also become TooAwesomeToUse.
*** ''Tribunal'' adds the Bi-Polar Blade as a reward for completing "[[MatchMakerQuest The Match Maker]]" side quest in a certain way. The two enchantments on the blade cancel each other out, which is fitting given the name of the weapon, but it is still a powerful blade in it's own right - dealing base damage on the level of the game's other artifact two-handed blades. Unlike the other artifact two-handed blades, which are in the hands of powerful enemies toward the end of lengthy faction quest lines, the Bi-Polar Blade can be obtained as soon as you reach Mournhold and requires no combat as part of the quest to obtain it. (It can also be sold to the Mournhold Museum for a cool 20,000 gold if you prefer.)
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'' has the staff Wabbajack, an artifact of [[MadGod Sheogorath]], which [[BalefulPolymorph transforms its target into a random creature]]. It'll even work on [[BigBad Mehrunes]] [[EldritchAbomination Dagon]], potentially turning the game's nearly indestructible final boss into a sheep, which you can then kill in one hit.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim Skyrim]]'':
*** ''Skyrim'''s version of the Wabbajack nerfs the transformations and makes the enemies return to their original form after getting struck by an attack. But then there are now a whole slew of different effects it can take, including turning a target into a Daedric Lord and, although it is still your enemy, it will also become the enemy to creatures around it, causing them to fight against each other (probably while you start sniping them with arrows or magic). And there's one big exception to the nerf on transformation: If the Wabbajack turns a target into an inanimate object either a pile of coins or a sweet roll they're dead for good. It's a low-probability but 100% fatal way of killing dangerous foes. Besides all that, it has a good chance of just making an explosion of fire/frost/shock magic on the target (in fact, against dragons it can't do anything else), giving the Wabbajack a fair role as a conventional weapon on top of all the transformation-related insanity.
*** Skyrim's Hearthfire expansion adds the Wooden Sword. It's meant to be a toy to give your adopted children, should you choose to have them...but for gameplay purposes, it is a weapon, that can be enchanted like any other and tempered with no particular smithing perks. A Dragonborn with high enough Smithing, Enchanting, and One-Handed skills could absolutely make Alduin run from this.
*** ''Morrowind'' and ''Oblivion'' have the Atronach Birthsign. At first, it looks like a joke; it has the best magicka boost, but the trade-off is that you lose your natural magicka regen. This, however, is made up for by the fact that you also have a 50-50 chance of absorbing any spells cast at you (with the absorption giving you magicka back), making mages much more manageable. Take Alchemy and make a lot of magicka regen potions, and you can overcome the magicka stunt altogether, leaving you with a hefty 50% chance at spell absorption (a spell effect that is extremely rare to get, if at all) and the best magicka boost in the game[[note]]In Oblivion, it was possible to boost your absorption to 100% with Atronach and 4 items. Full magic immunity, enormous magicka pool, and it is an easier way to get complete and permanent protection from magic than using Magic Resistance enhancements.[[/note]]. ''Daggerfall'' didn't have the birthsigns... but it did have the sorcerer class, which used the exact same combination of lacking natural magicka regen but having a chance at spell absorption (in theory the class maker would allow creating a class that had the absorption and the full magicka boost without the magicka regeneration stunting, but the costs were such that unless you abused racial immunity bugs you either had to load up with lots of ''other'' drawbacks or level up ''very'' slowly).
* ''VideoGame/EverQuest'' has the Mossy Twig. It does very little damage and it initially seemed like a joke. Until someone figured out it was really, really fast. When you have spells or other items that go off every time you swing a weapon, it can be devastating.
* ''VideoGame/FallenLondon'' has the Ridiculous Hat, the Bottled Oblivion, and the Talkative Rattus Faber (now only the latter lowers stats, though it lowers them ''tremendously'') -- all they do is take up an equipment slot and reduce your main stats, which would seem to make them joke items at best. However, due to the way the game works, the ideal Change-Points-per-action ratio is achieved with Chancy challenges -- meaning that, if you want to level up quickly, you have to make sure that every challenge you take is Chancy. And just like that, the Talkative Rattus Faber goes from worse-than-useless to vital. The icing on the cake: it lets you do this with the lower-level storylets that don't fill up your menaces when failed, so you can grind in peace without having to worry about your wounds/nightmares/suspicion/scandal. (Also, [[spoiler:the Boatman's DynamicDifficulty is a step function. You want your Watchful to be exactly one less than the amount that causes him to scale up.]])
* ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'':
** In ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 2}}'', there are the flares. They do 1 point of damage, and cost one Action Point to throw. But if you take the perk [[DeadlyDoctor Living Anatomy]], you do an additional 5 points of damage per attack. These 5 points ignore armor. So with 10 AG, Action Boy (Insert [[ActionGirl Girl]] if you wish)*2, jet*2, and cookies*2, you can have 18 Action Points, allowing you to do 90 damage per round to any non-robotic enemy. Including the end boss.
** ''VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas'':
*** Euclid's C-Finder. Seems to be a useless thing that a kid was using as a toy raygun. [[spoiler:Turns out it's the [[PuppetGun target spotter]] for the [[KillSat Archimedes II laser satellite]].]] Lampshaded by your companion Veronica commenting it was lucky the safety was on if you decided to activate Archimedes II.
*** ''New Vegas'' also had the Cane. A simple walking stick in a world filled with weapons like the Super Sledge. However, between the extremely high attack speed, the cheapness to repair and the surprisingly good crit-multiplier, it is ''murder'' in the hands of a crit-focused melee build.
*** The Abilene Kid LE BB Gun. Its base damage is a piffling 4 points, but with the right perks it does as much critical damage as the sniper rifle. Sneak attacks are always critical, and it is a silent weapon.
* In ''VideoGame/FarCry3'', the FlareGun seems like a useless weapon at first. It has a slow rate of fire, short range, and it's easy to set the area around you on fire with. However, it will set any vehicle in the game on fire in one shot, disabling it and turning it into a time bomb. It's also extremely effective against wild animals, either scaring them off or killing them.
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'', doing a sidequest gives you the reward of a Spoon. What do you do with it? Throw it! Apparently it's the best throwing item Edge has. Unfortunately the joke goes away in later versions where they "properly" rename it ''Knife''. The fact that the game contains a spoon item and [[SpoonyBard Edward]] can't equip it is a travesty.
* The Lustful Lali-ho is just a joke item -- it's basically a porno mag. In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIVTheAfterYears'', however, it's insanely valuable, since it can be traded in the final chapter for an item that permanently boosts MP by 50 -- the best such item in the game.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyV'' also has a few of these.
** The RecurringBoss drops a sword at one point which he claims to be the legendary sword Excalibur; only, it's actually the ''Excalipoor'', which seems powerful on the stat screen but really only deals 1 damage per hit. This is [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] in the BossFight beforehand, where he attempts to use it on ''you'' with about the same rate of effectiveness (none). However, since the "Always hits for 1 damage" routine is run after fight damage is calculated, ''Skills'' that use the attack value, like Blue Mage's Goblin Punch and Ninja's Throw, use the listed value. However, those would merely make the sword NotCompletelyUseless.\\
The true value of this sword is that it "[[ExactWords Always hits for 1 damage]]" when the "Fight" command is used; ''it never misses''. Because Magic Sword skills ''enhance'' a weapon, with the strikes ''themselves'' inflicted with the "Fight" command, any magic sword spell that inflicts negative status will ''always'' affect the enemy without immunity to that specific status, including the few bosses that are not immune to instant death, petrification, or tension (warp). It is almost an essential item to low-level runs. It is also useful for killing the game's MetalSlime, the Skull Eater, which is nigh invulnerable despite only having one HP, except against a sword that never misses and always does 1 damage.
** The Chicken Knife becomes more and more powerful as your escape count increases (increasing by 1 ATK on each escape, maxing at ATK 127). Even though it usually causes you to automatically run away from battles, with a few tricks, or using it on inescapable battles, it can be a really strong weapon to use. On the other hand, the most powerful sword, the Brave sword (ATK 150), will decrease its ATK stat by 1 on each escape, thus normal players have almost no use for the Chicken Knife while low-level run players will love it. While the Chicken Knife's maximum ATK is 23 points lower than its counterpart, your agility is calculated in addition to your strength when determining damage for knife-type weapons, making it actually stronger than the Brave Sword.\\
And as well, the Knife doesn't cause you to run when you use certain Job abilities (e.g. the Archer's 4x Attack), meaning with the right couple of abilities, your knife becomes the strongest and fastest weapon in the vanilla game. In the Bonus Dungeon, though, there are weapons that surpass it.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'' has Imp equipment. Being Imped makes a character much weaker, and wearing Imp equipment does just about nothing, but by [[AllYourPowersCombined Their Powers Combined]], a character may become near-godly. With enough grinding (all of the Imp equipment is randomly dropped), it's possible to go into the final boss battle with thirteen of fourteen characters (one character cannot equip anything except Relics) transformed into Imps, but bristling with awesome equipment. This arguably makes the last boss easier; while it locks your special skills, all characters (even weak fighters like Relm) can strike with Imp Halberds for massive damage. Though the amount of grinding required to do that would make the characters too strong to ''need'' the boost.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyXI'' has several of them:
** The Kraken Club has the absolutely pathetic damage rating of 11, and a fairly average delay rating, but the bonus effect of 'occasionally attacks 2 to 8 times' (per attack 'turn'). By occasionally, of course, they mean ''almost always''. Combined with FFXI's LimitBreak system, and the fact that it can be held in the off hand while using DualWield, this has the potential to be extremely powerful. It could also be used on its own with the Dark Knight abilities "Souleater" and "Blood Weapon", the former transferring a percentage of current HP directly into damage and the latter restoring HP equivalent to damage dealt for a period of time. [[spoiler:It was discovered to be previously the only way to beat a previously nearly unbeatable boss, Absolute Virtue, extremely quickly before it was fixed.]] Of course, the way FFXI's LimitBreak system works (long story short: Enemies get various {{Limit Break}}s too, based on how many times they get hit) also means that it can be just as lethal to the person using it. However, with the advent of content above the natural level cap that requires equipment with "Item Level" (i.e. the equivalent stats of leveling to up to 119), it's useless for almost all endgame content now.
** Hocho stands out. Passable stats for its level, completely useless at End Game, and [[RandomlyDrops a 1% drop rate or less on a rare Lottery Spawn Tonberry]]. It's a Katana that also increases your ''cooking skill''. Yeah. And not by a trivial amount like +1 -- oh, no. It raises it by +3, the same value as all the other +cooking skill equipment ''combined''[[note]]Hocho is Japanese for Kitchen Knife. The developers would have translated it into English, but since it's considered a ''Katana'', they left the Japanese name.[[/note]].
** A couple holiday-themed cosmetic weapons that only have 1 attack also have the property of being open to all jobs. This allows some jobs access to weapon skills via subjob that aren't otherwise possible. Since some content revolves around triggering an enemy's random weakness via weapon skill, this makes it possible for fewer people to cover all possible bases.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyTactics'': ''Tactics''[='=] array of swords includes the "Nagrarock", a sword that is pathetic in power, will deal absurdly low damage when it hits, and every once in a while [[BalefulPolymorph turns people into frogs.]] It also grants a huge movement bonus, so if you're into DualWielding...

[[folder:Examples G-L]]
* A Japan-only God Roulette Skill in ''VideoGame/GodHand'' involves [[DropTheWashtub dropping a pan on your head]] for almost no reason. But it is one of the most used lethal joke items, as it gives you an invincibility frame. When everything on DIE can kill in seconds, the god pan will ensure that you won't take damage that will kill you.
* ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAutoV'':
** The Rhino Tank can fall under this. Thanks to a nerf to the tank's armor, many players now see it as somewhat of a [[JokeItem joke vehicle]] in ''Online''. However, it still has that powerful cannon that can take anything out in one hit. Don't have any explosives? You're still screwed.
** Likewise, snowballs. They're plentiful and practically unlimited during festive seasons, and they're by logic harmless. But three of these can kill a NPC!
** The Flare Gun. Useful for showing another player where you are in certain situations, but not much else. If you manage to fire a direct hit onto another player or NPC, they'll be set on fire!
* In ''VideoGame/HitmanBloodMoney'', you can get a nailgun. Very inaccurate, can only hit at close range, deals almost no damage, and it has a pause between each shot. However, when you realize that a headshot with any ranged weapon is an instant kill, your huge-clipped weapon becomes useful if you hide behind a corner while under attack by a large swarm of guards.
* In ''VideoGame/HyperRogue'', the most useful of all the magical orbs is the Dead Orb. While other Orbs let you throw lightning, teleport, summon golems, or walk through fire unhurt, the Dead Orb... does nothing. The description comments on its pointlessness, and says you might as well drop it. In fact, it's the only item you ''can'' drop, so it's often the only way to [[TrailOfBreadCrumbs mark your path]] and find your way back somewhere.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Iji}}'': you can acquire more powerful weapons, but the Banana Gun still packs an explosive punch -- in the form of a rubber squeaky toy shaped like a banana. It is also the only weapon affected by gravity, and thus can be thrown from above.
* In ''Kengo: Master of Bushido'', the strongest "sword" with the longest reach is actually an oar. Though it doesn't have a Spirit move, because it's made of wood, you can use it instead of a bokken when facing another dojo. This is probably a ShoutOut to the sword saint UsefulNotes/MiyamotoMusashi's (in)famous duel versus his lifelong rival Sasaki Kojirou, in which ([[MagnificentBastard long story short]]) he used an oar and ''won''. It's worth mentioning that Sasaki's katana is waaaay longer than a normal katana.
* In ''VideoGame/KingdomHearts358DaysOver2'' Roxas use a stick for a single mission. It is entirely useless, but somehow retains the passive abilities of whatever Keyblade you had equipped. Which means with the right setup, it can can randomly [[StandardStatusEffects light Heartless on fire or freeze them solid]]. As Xion puts it:
--> '''Xion''': Roxas, that's a stick.
%%** When using the Mystery Gear, Xemnas has heart-shaped light sabers, Xigbar has a trumpet (they make honking sounds when you reload), Xaldin has six sticks with dragons heads on them, Vexen has a snowflake-shaped shield with a snowman on it (and ice is his element), Lexaeus has a [[EenieMeenieMinyMoai moai]], Zexion has a white laptop, Saix has a cute [[MoonRabbit bunny and spaceship]] claymore, Axel has two giant ninja stars, Demyx has a big broom, Luxord wields several {{four leaf clover}}s, Marluxia has a giant bent water lily with a long stem, Larxene has eight lightbulbs, and both Roxas and Xion avert the "joke" part for their Mystery Gear weapon, instead getting a very cool, ''very spiky'', absurdly fast, key.
%%** When using the Casual Gear, Xemnas has a pair of fans (of the kind used for fanning flames), Xigbar uses blowdryers (with a whoosh during use and reload), Xaldin uses brooms, Vexen has a pot lid, Lexaeus uses a Piko-piko Hammer, Zexion carries a giant sandwich, Saix waves about a giant BANANA!, Axel is serving up pizza, Demyx is playing a giant tennis racket, Luxord plays with some [=CDs=] (to be specific, Final Fantasy XIII discs), Marluxia has a Disturbing Ladle, Larxene is throwing some dragonfly barrettes, and Roxas and Xion swing around an umbrella. (Now if only theirs had been [[MythologyGag a stick or wooden sword]]).
* In ''VideoGame/KirbysAdventure'':
** Ball ability. To the average player, it can be a pretty bad weapon, as it greatly limits your movement and makes you really vulnerable, and basically of little more use than [[JokeItem Sleep]]. However, it deals damage proportionate to Kirby's speed, and gives quite a lot of invincibility frames, meaning that Kirby can just bounce through most closed areas killing everything in his path, up to and including minibosses.
** The Hi-Jump is almost completely useless as an attack and typically only handy for moving through levels. Except against bosses; every boss goes down with ease except Meta-Knight, who forces you to use the Sword power against him.
* The [[TrickArrow Banana Peel Arrow]] In ''VideoGame/TheLastStory'' is a gag item only used to play pranks on people in town or set up hilarious traps for the few human enemies you will face... or you can use them to disarm Zangurak, a feat that is otherwise possible only by attacking him ''en masse'' for several seconds or with a perfectly-timed counter-attack. Plus, the satisfaction of seeing the [[spoiler:second-to]] FinalBoss fall on his rump has no equals.
* This has become a tradition of sorts in ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'':
** In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess'', the final Arena-style sword battle with Ganondorf can be made ridiculously easy by using your fishing rod as one of these. The fishing rod has no practical use in battle, since you normally use it only for fishing, but if you pull it out, Ganondorf will ''stand and stare at the line'' while you wave it around, completely oblivious to the fact that he ''should'' be fighting you. You then quickly whip out your sword and slash at him while he's caught unawares... rinse and repeat, because he never catches on.
** There is also the curious property of bottles in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'' and ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'', where you can swing them to [[TennisBoss reflect energy ball attacks in boss battles]].
** This is in turn a reference to ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaALinkToThePast'', where you could deflect the dark wizard Agahnim's projectiles with the Master Sword... or the Butterfly Net, which was normally just used to catch insects and fairies in bottles. Later games had the bottles themselves do the catching and deflecting.
** ''[[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime Ocarina of Time]]'': Deku Sticks; they break in one hit, are only available as a child, and their intended use is to light torches... but that one-hit-per-stick is as powerful as the ''[[SwordofPlotAdvancement Master Sword]]'', able to take down most of the child bosses in one to two well-timed Jump Attacks. And because of a glitch, every so often you'd get a stick that only broke part-way, letting you continue to use it indefinitely until you switch to something else.
%%** An unintentional example with the Broken Giant's Knife. Thanks to a glitch in its hit detection, it tears Dark Link apart in about five seconds.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask'' had the Blast Mask. Normally explodes when you hit B, but damages you each time you use it. Since bombs are plentiful, it ''would'' be useless, except a quirk in the game's code lets you put up your shield to protect yourself from the blast, even though it's originating ''from your face''.
** In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTheWindWaker'', the second dungeon's boss, [[ManEatingPlant Kalle Demos]], dies in one hit from... pouring Forest Water on him. Forest Water's main use is to purify sick plants during a sidequest, so this application ''does'' make a lot of sense. Despite existing ever since the original version of the game, fans only discovered this one ''14 years later'' when a speedrunner was messing around with the HD version.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaLinksAwakening'' has two: the Shovel, which deflects Agahnim's Shadow's projectiles, and the Boomerang, which normally doesn't affect bosses, but ''takes down the final boss [[OneHitKill in one hit]]''.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOracleGames'':
*** The Whimsical Ring. It decreases your attack power... though each swing of your sword has a 1 in 256 chance of causing a OneHitKill to which not even the final boss is immune.
*** In ''Seasons'', some Subrosians steal your Roc's Feather and leave you with an item called the Fool's Ore. All you can do with it is swing it like your sword, which does nothing. However, if you find an enemy to use it on, you can kill it in 1 hit. The only enemy, however, is the Fire Pokey (which you sometimes dig up), and you can't leave the area until you get the Roc's Feather back, which replaces the Fool's Ore.
** Following this trend, in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaSkywardSword'', the net you use for catching bugs will also distract [[spoiler:Demise]] during the first half of the battle, and not only does it deflect the projectiles he fires in the second half, ''it's the only way to do so'' -- your shield can only block them and trying to use your sword just gets yourself electrified.
** ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaBreathOfTheWild'' has the Spring Loaded Hammer, which is the weakest weapon in the game. You could [[CherryTapping cherry tap]] enemies to death with it, but the impact of the final swing will send enemies flying across the field. Do this near a cliffside and you can watch your foes fly off into the abyss below as they take major fall damage or even be killed by it.
* ''VideoGame/LufiaIIRiseOfTheSinistrals'' and ''VideoGame/LufiaTheLegendReturns'' have the Bunny Sword. While its stated Attack is a whopping 500, standard attacks with it only deal 1 or 2 damage. Unless you use IP attacks, which ''do'' use its full power to determine damage.
* ''VideoGame/LufiaCurseOfTheSinistrals'' has a Chopping Board that Tia can equip as armor. While its defense is sub-par, it's the only means of giving [[GlassCannon Tia]] the Rush Attack passive that doubles damage to knocked-down enemies.

[[folder:Examples M-R]]
* In ''VideoGame/MassEffect3'', the M7 Lancer is a ShoutOut to the [[StarterEquipment very first assault rifle]] of [[VideoGame/MassEffect1 the very first game]]. So obviously, it's outclassed by the current crop of weapons with three years of technological advancement over it, right? Wrong! The Lancer has firepower and fire rate comparable to a Cerberus Harrier, and it retains the first game's cooldown system, giving you [[BottomlessMagazines unlimited ammunition]] if you're patient. Also, it's incredibly lightweight, making it possible for power-centric classes like Adepts or Engineers to use it as their only gun for the whole game.
* In ''VideoGame/MegaMan3'', the Top Spin appears to be Mega Man's [[WhatKindOfLamePowerIsHeartAnyway lamest special weapon]]. However, it can OneHitKill Dr. Wily's final phase. Additionally, if you know the quirks of the weapon[[note]]It drains every frame it's in use and in contact with an enemy, which drains it quickly against enemies that are invulnerable[[/note]], it's surprisingly effective against common enemies.
* A somewhat literal example of a lethal joke item is provided by the Humor program in the ''VideoGame/MegaManBattleNetwork'' series, which does nothing but replace Mega Man's usual advice with extremely bad jokes when it's placed properly. However, starting from the fourth game, if you intentionally glitch it, it instead has the highly beneficial in-battle effect of randomly causing his next attack to deal double damage.
* Ever make "Junk" out of ItemCrafting in ''VideoGame/MegaManZero 4''? They're actually ingredients for the Junk Armor, a set of armor that makes him even more of a GlassCannon and doubles all damage he deals and receives. There are also S-crystals, which are never used as Custom Chips either, but make two of them and bring them to your friend Hirondelle for two free [[EmergencyEnergyTank Sub-tanks]].
* The ''VideoGame/MechWarrior'' series has always had the machine gun weapon, which is invariably a short-range anti-infantry peashooter. Since you don't get to fight any infantry in the first place, and the weapon does piddling damage against anything else, most players tend to forget it even exists. But if you look at the hard stats and take into consideration heat generation and ammo tonnage, the machine gun comes out as one of the most efficient weapons ''in the whole series''. It doesn't do much damage by itself so using just one or two is pointless, but if you take a ballistic-focused Mech and fill all its slots with machine guns you'll have created a fast short-range brawler that'll wipe the floor with pretty much anything within its range, and will keep doing so long after more typical short-range Mechs will have run out of LBX ammo and SRM rockets.
* Franchise/MetalGear Series:
** The Monkey Mask of ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid3'' can briefly fool the final boss into dropping their guard. Similarly, the Mask (although it's required for a brief section of the game) can do the same for another boss.
** ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid4'' has the Tanegashima lead ball musket in a mildly futuristic game. But it has a 1 in 3 chance of creating a tornado in outdoor areas, and most of the game does take place in outdoor areas.
** ''{{VideoGame/Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker}}'s'' best co-op weapon [[BraggingRightsReward requires grinding three very hard hidden bosses]] (which need to be killed [[CherryTapping non-lethally]]) just for the '''''chance''''' of possibly getting one of three rare parts to drop. Your reward for grinding and then investing vast amounts of R&D's time and money? A human slingshot that requires four people to operate (and even uses the fourth member as ammunition), ''but insta-kills any boss.''
** In ''VideoGame/MetalGearRisingRevengeance'', finding [[MythologyGag the five enemies hiding in boxes]] unlocks the wooden training sword as a weapon. While it does prevent [[CaptainObvious any cutting attack damage]] and allows for a PacifistRun, every hit carries a chance of making an enemy disappear, giving the potential to finish an enemy faster than with a lethal weapon. Upgrades can even increase the fade chance and/or ''[[CherryTapping decrease damage]]'', but an upcoming DLC pack takes the ridiculousness [[UpToEleven even further]] through an unlockable version ''that shouts phrases in [[Creator/DavidHayter Solid]] [[Creator/AkioOhtsuka Snake]]'s voice when you hit things.''
** ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolidVThePhantomPain has the Water Pistol. While apparently just a toy, it has so many uses that in certain stages it can be considered overpowered. It can short-circuit electronics without any noise and put out fires, making it ridiculously easy to sneak at night. If shot near a guard it will make a noise that attracts them, but it won't leave any suspicious marks. Shot at the face can disorient a guard enough for Snake to reach him and subdue him, and it can [[spoiler:stun the Skulls and subdue the Man on Fire, the most powerful enemies in the game (save for Sahelantropus), although it takes several shots for the latter.]] And, since it looks like a real gun you can use it to hold up enemies. Since it has infinite ammo, you don't even need to get supply drops for it.
* In ''VideoGame/MightAndMagic VII'', a club called Mash adds 150 points to strength and can be used by anyone without needing a skill. Of course, it also drops intellect and personality to near-vegetable levels. Whether it's worth the price is your call. If you're not a caster...
* ''VideoGame/{{Minecraft}}'':
** The anvil. While the setup is incredibly difficult, setting up a trap where a player or mob gets stuck in a pit they can't get out of, then [[AnvilOnHead having an anvil fall on them]], does two full hearts of damage for each block height that it drops (reduced if the target is wearing a helmet). Combine with a dispenser for fun and profit.
** Thrown snowballs do precisely jack diddly to most of the enemies in the game. Except Blazes, who take massive damage. [[spoiler:And the frickin ''Ender Dragon''.]]
** {{Speed Run}}ners agree: the most effective weapon against the Ender Dragon is [[spoiler:''beds'', of all things. The joke: You can only sleep at night, so trying to sleep in The End, which has no time, causes your bed to explode in a PuffOfLogic. It's actually ''stronger than TNT'', and much faster to set off.]]
* ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter'' has quite a few:
** The Melynx series of weapons are basically ''stuffed animal toys''. They tend to have very low damage output as a result, but also have the very useful [[TheParalyzer Paralysis]] status effect, which renders monsters immobile for several seconds and leaves them vulnerable to beatdowns.
** The Corn Gunlance, known as the "Pop Corn" or "Cornpopper" in the international versions, is a {{BFG}} made out of a [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin huge]] [[EdibleBludgeon corn-on-the-cob]] that inexplicably makes stock cartoon noises with every move. While it has low Sharpness compared to many endgame Gunlances, it also has Lv. 5 Spread Shelling, the strongest shelling power available to said weapon type, with later games even giving it a hidden [[StuffBlowingUp Blastblight]] attribute.
** The Teddybear. It's a giant stuffed teddy bear that makes squeaky toy noises when attacking, which you use as a [[DropTheHammer hammer]]. Although it has relatively low raw damage, it has the highest Sleep ailment stat in the game (a whopping ''43'', whereas most of the other Sleep weapons have 20-25) and a substantial amount of white Sharpness when fully upgraded.
%%** Many of the [[InstrumentOfMurder Hunting Horns]] -- basically large [[DropTheHammer bludgeons]] that also double as [[MagicMusic power-up dispensers]] -- fall into this category, with one of the more well-known models being an ''oversized harmonica''.
* Mother series:
** The Casey Bat from ''VideoGame/EarthBound''. Joke? It has a very low chance of hitting, depending on the strength of the ememies & the number of party members. Lethal? When it ''does'' hit, it hits ''hard''. (This is also a ShoutOut to the baseball poem, "Casey at the Bat" -- Casey swings hard, but strikes out.) When the random encounter system checks if you auto-win, it checks your attack power. With the Casey bat, this is much higher than it ought to be, so the game will let you auto-win fights earlier than you would be able to otherwise.
** The sequel ''VideoGame/{{Mother 3}}'' brings us the Honey Shower. It covers the opponent in honey, and bees mob them. The bees don't do a whole lot of damage, but they're sometimes followed by [[BearsAreBadNews a bear who does.]]
%%* One of the most lethal objects in the {{Website/Neopets}} Battledome is... the [[http://battlepedia.thedailyneopets.com/index.php/weapon/viewweap/1/ Super Attack Pea]].
* The ''PhantasyStar'' series has these too.
** ''VideoGame/PhantasyStarOnline'' has Akiko's Frying Pan. While weak compared to the higher-level rare weapons, it has a low enough attack power requirement that with the right equipment, a level 1 character can equip it. It also has the Samba Maracas (which work like ''machine guns'') and a toy hammer. There are also several umbrellas and parasols, which are easily the most powerful multi-hit weapons female non-melee classes can equip.
** The Akiko's Frying Pan card in ''Phantasy Star Online III'', which has AP and TP equal to half that of the opponent you attack it with, is one of the best cards to use against Pollux, whose AP grows every turn, and thus lets the pan do more damage.
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil2'':
** There is flamethrower for Leon to use. It's the same type that Chris gets in the previous game and is just as worthless against zombies, lickers, and bosses, '''but''' it makes very quick work of Ivy monsters, who otherwise take loads of precious ammo to kill.
** The Spark Shot that Claire receives is so laughably useless that you'll probably end up wasting it on zombies just to save ''handgun'' ammo. But if you hang onto it, it absolutely ''trashes William Birkin and the Tyrant T-103-Type''.
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4'' has the Flash Grenade, which is explicitly non-lethal, but can disorientate groups of enemies. However, the "plaga-headed" Ganados, normally much more lethal and durable, will die ''instantly'' if caught in the blast radius of the Flash Grenade.
** It also opens whole groups of enemies for melee takedowns, which deal huge amounts of damage. Not only is this a big ammo saver for Leon, it's also a ''vital'' tactic for The Mercenaries mode, where ammo comes on drips. In fact if you haven't mastered this technique by the time you start tackling The Mercenaries, you won't get anywhere close to a gold rank.
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil5'' has the electric rounds for the grenade launcher that are pitifully weak against Majini, but are great for stunning Reapers and exposing their vulnerable spots.
* The knife was largely seen as useless in the franchise, as the player character would merely thrust it forward for a single, weak strike, and it used up valuable inventory space that needed to go towards firearms and ammunition. ''Code: Veronica'' turned its animation into a slash that registered multiple hits, and then ''4'' made it even '''more''' useful by having it be permanently equipped without sacrificing an item slot. ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil'' for the DS did the same knife thing, though it kept the same attack.
%%* ''VideoGame/RuneFactory3'' practically has a joke armory: from the Dekash (a weaponized tuna) to dual-wielded soup ladles to a fancy parasol or stuffed animal as shields.
* The ''Franchise/RatchetAndClank'' games:
** They feature a series of weapons called "The Sheepinator" or some such, that transmute enemies into cuddly farmyard animals. The ''[[EvolvingAttack Black]]'' [[EvolvingAttack Sheepinator]] in ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClankGoingCommando'' did the same thing, plus making them ''explode''.
** Quack-O-Ray of ''VideoGame/RatchetAndClankUpYourArsenal'', which turns your enemies into ducks quite fast, but with low reach, making it risky to use. Enemies get transformed faster the lower current HP they have (you can badly damage a tough enemy from a distance with other weapons then get up close and finish it off with a now much faster morph, so the Quack-O-Ray gets an EXP boost equivalent to the kill, making levelling it up easier). [[SerialEscalation Every level of upgrade makes it more lethal]]. The ducks start laying exploding eggs (V2), which then become homing eggs (V3); at V4 the ducks themselves will also attack enemies, and finally at V5, if you don't already have one, the next morphed enemy will turn into a flying, ''on fire'' duck that locks onto and charges into enemies of its own accord. Once it expires from dealing out damage, you'll get a new one from the next morph. Since it consumes no ammo whatsoever, it's the perfect weapon for Arena challenges involving waves of mooks, and the otherwise-infuriating constant spawn of Amoeboids when hunting for Sewer Crystals on Aquatos (which also greatly assist in power-levelling this weapon).
** There's also the device known as the Groovitron, a disco ball that can cause any enemy nearby to start dancing. Including the bosses. Including the final boss. And while they're dancing, you're free to attack them with everything you have. Using this during the final boss battle in ''[[VideoGame/RatchetAndClankFutureToolsOfDestruction Tools Of Destruction]]'' will give you vital moments to switch weapons, pick up ammo and [[CallAHitPointASmeerp Nanotech]], and all in all just unload destruction on him.
%%* The Ostrich Hammer (as in, use an ostrich AS A HAMMER) from ''VideoGame/RedFaction: Guerilla''.
%%* And from ''VideoGame/RedFaction: Armageddon'' comes "Mr. Toots", a [[Franchise/MyLittlePony MLP]] [[MyLittlePhony knockoff]] that farts rainbow lasers. (Presently in use as the current page image)

[[folder:Examples S-Z]]
* ''VideoGame/ShadowrunReturns'': In ''Dragonfall'', there was the Slapdash Pistol, found in Gesundbrunnen. It has a cost on par with a decent assault rifle, looks like someone poured superglue into a pile of scrap gun parts (some bits are hot-glued on,) and is out-damaged by starting pistols. However, its hidden stats (crit modifier and damage multiplier) are the highest in the game, meaning it will not even scratch an appropriate-level enemy with a regular hit... but it will CriticalHit two times out of three and OneHitKill 80% of the enemies in the game on a CriticalHit.
* ''Franchise/SonicTheHedgehog'':
** In ''VideoGame/ShadowTheHedgehog'', after hitting pieces of the scenery, they typically break apart into things like sticks, stop signs, and neon test tubes. They seem useless until you realize they work exactly like swords, and can kill enemies. (That said, they're rather weak, but better than nothing). There's also the Omochao Gun, which ''looks'' really out of place, but its ammo can ricochet three times before running out of steam. It's surprisingly useful for wiping out Black Arms larvae.
** ''Videogame/SonicAdventure2'' has Sonic's Magic Hands. You have to remain still and scroll through a cumbersome action menu to get to it, but literally every enemy in the game that is not a boss or a part of the scenery WILL be turned into a ball. Furthermore, the ball you get from the enemy, when thrown, is able to break through any and all defenses.
** ''Videogame/SonicRiders'' has the Hovercraft gear. The thing over-steers like a fiend, meaning that unless you're taking a sharp turn, you'll end up swerving all over the road from the slightest nudge of the control stick. On the other hand, though, it has maxed-out stats for every other stat ''and'' it's the only gear other than the Heavy gear that can maintain cruising speed while charging a jump. Once you figure out how to work around the over-steering problem (or not, if you're able to at least keep it on the road for the majority of the race), then you can easily steamroll anything that comes your way.
* ''VideoGame/SkiesOfArcadia'' has the Tuna Cutlass for Vyse and the Swirlmarang for Aika. They're JokeWeapon rewards for beating a secret boss (in the GCN version) or downloadable extras (in the original DC version). The Tuna Cutlass, which is a giant fish with a gutting knife as the secondary sword, has extremely low accuracy, but devastatingly high attack. Most of the time it'll miss, [[InfinityPlusOneSword but if it doesn't, watch out]]. What's more, Vyse's S-Moves count his weapon's attack stat, but ignore the accuracy stat. In other words, ''they won't miss.'' On the other hand, the Swirlmarang, which was a giant lollipop, had extremely low attack, but high accuracy, and a 100% chance of causing panic as long as the enemy wasn't immune to it.
* In ''VideoGame/StarOceanTheLastHope'', there's the Tri-Embl'''u'''m. At first glance, it's like the Tri-Embl'''e'''m, the best unmodified accessory in the game... except with 1/100 of the stats and none of the cool factors. However, it has a particular hidden stat whose worth doesn't become apparent until the post-game: A Synth limit of 8. This allows you to synthesize up to 8 other items onto it to beef up its power. The regular Tri-Emblem has a limit of only 3, but transfers 100% of its stats when synthing. If you synth some Tri-Emblems together, you can get one awesome one with 4x the stats. Or, you could synth 8 of them to a Tri-Embl'''u'''m, getting an accessory with 8x the stats of a regular Tri-Emblem, three of the four awesome factors found on the Tri-Emblem, and best of all, able to be duplicated for the dirt cheap price of 1 Magical Clay, allowing you to outfit your whole party with them. What's not to love?
* In the first ''[[VideoGame/SummonNight Summon Night: Swordcraft Story]]'', at roughly the halfway point of the game, you can craft a sword tech from the Craftlord of Sapphire, who is basically just messing with your character. The tech turns out to be a cooking ladle, with pretty much the stats you'd expect combat-wise -- in other words, abysmal. However, by putting a Mystic Ore into it, you can imbue it with the Fire element... and increase its durability. ''Eight-fold''. Bear in mind here that the goal of most boss battles is to break their weapon before they can do the same to your weapon, because breaking your opponent's weapon is the key to doing so teaches you the technique of the weapon in question. Much of the challenge of this is that you might accidentally get their HP to 0 first - and again, the ladle has pathetically low Attack. It helps that the ladle maxes out its TEC at 255, where the overwhelming majority of weapons max out at 100 or less, and TEC increases your combo speed, and that the ladle increases your AGI by 10 on top of that. Wish your enemies luck in breaking out of your combos before their weapons are broken -- they'll need it. Another property of the ladle that makes it even more lethal is that it costs 1 Mystic Ore to imbue it with Fire, but melting the Hot Iron Ladle down into your forge gives you 2 Mystic Ores. The value of this cannot be overstated; Mystic Ores are ''ridiculously'' hard to come by in any decent quantity, and always extremely valuable. To the point where discovering the Hot Iron Ladle in the first place seems like InsaneTrollLogic, since it requires using 1 Mystic Ore on a useless weapon.
* ''VideoGame/SuperMarioRPG'' has several.
** The Quartz Charm, acquired by beating [[BonusBoss Culex]], seems to do absolutely nothing... but, in actuality, it lets you start every battle with the "Attack Up" and "Defense Up" statuses (that you normally get from flowers and Geno Boosts), which double your attack and defense. It also protects against [[OneHitKill instant-death attacks]]. The Ghost Medal is similar, but only works for defense.
** The Lazy Shell Armor greatly reduces attack power and speed (the joke), but gives you so much Defense (the lethality) that you become practically invincible. Now, ''who'' would want to be invincible, but so weak you couldn't hurt a fly? [[WhiteMagicianGirl Toadstool]], of course! She can ''solo'' Culex (and anything else, for that matter) while wearing the Lazy Shell Armor. It just takes '''[[MarathonBoss a very long time]]''' to do so.
** Pure Water has no effect on anything except ghosts/undead, which are a OneHitKill on them. They're also good for VendorTrash since they sell for 75 coins each.
* ''VideoGame/SuperRobotWarsAlpha'' has [[Anime/MobileSuitGundam Tem Ray's Circuit]]. When you put it on any mech, its stats will be drastically reduced; the plus side is that the mech will cost only 10 credits to repair (in other words, the part turns it into another [[JokeCharacter Boss]] [[Anime/MazingerZ Borot]]). If you want real menace, however, just put it on [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion EVA-01]] along with another part to lessen the penalty, then send Shinji on a suicide attack. Paying only 10 instead of 40000, using [[TheBerserker Berserk EVA]] now sounds like a practical strategy.
* ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros''
** The Paper Fan deals very little damage but is really fast, doesn't allow your enemies to move (much; it IS possible to escape...most of the time) while you're hitting them, and can be spammed. You can deal insane amounts of damage to your enemies to the point that throwing the fan once you're done can send them flying offscreen. And if your foe is foolish enough to try to shield, if you smash with the fan, you break it ''instantly''. Throwing the fan will also send an opponent ''straight upwards into the air'', a property that very few attacks ''or'' items reliably have.
** The Bumper does no damage (unless you throw it right at someone) but a lot of knockback. It's especially impressive when the damage ratio is turned up (resulting in more knockback for the same hits), where it can become a one-hit KO unless you're on a very large stage or there are a lot of obstacles in the way.
** Bonsly qualifies, despite not being an actual "[[LethalJokeCharacter item]]". When you send it out of the Poké Ball, all it does is walk around, doing no damage whatsoever. If you pick it UP, however, and throw it, it does insane amounts of damage and can often KO at very low percentages.
** The Mr. Saturn item normally walks around the stage harmlessly, pushing items around as it travels and doing a minuscule amount of damage and knockback if you pick it up and toss it at someone. However, its shield damage has been buffed with every iteration of the game, and any unlucky sap who decides to try and shield a thrown one in ''[[VideoGame/SuperSmashBros Super Smash Bros. for Wii U / 3DS]]'' will find their shield broken ''instantly''. Getting your shield broken leaves you in a stunned animation for quite a long time, making you a sitting duck for the strongest attack in an opponent's arsenal.
* ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2''.
** Jarate is basically an ascended joke weapon, said weapon being a jar of the Sniper's own urine. But it is useful for extinguishing teammates on fire, shorting out Spy cloaking, subjecting enemies to mini-crits for the next minute or so, and forcing your enemies to accept a terrifying new existence where people do awful things to them all the time for no reason and dignity does not exist.
---> Spy: "I have been SHOWN who is the ''BOSS!''"
** The Heavy's fists. Not very useful against any enemy charging you with a gun, but sneak up on a distracted enemy and [[FingerGun taunt]].
---> Heavy: "POW! HAHA!"\\
Victim: "[[OneHitKill AAAARGH!]]"
** The Sticky Jumper is ostensibly a training version of the demoman's stock StickyBomb launcher that has more ammo, but does no damage or KnockBack to the Demoman's enemies (but also does no damage to the Demoman himself, hence the training utility). Normally, this would be of no use to a class focused on blowing up one's enemies. However, when paired to the Ullapool Caber, itself almost a Lethal Joke Item (being a [=WW2=]-style [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_24_grenade 'potato masher' grenade]] of the sort one would usually throw being [[ImprobableUseOfAWeapon used to smack people]], turning the demoman into an ActionBomb), things like [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvJRK6FaSD0 this]] happen. This is because in a previous iteration, the Sticky Jumper negated all self-inflicted explosive damage, including damage from one's own sticky bombs, grenades.. .and the Ullapool Caber. Because a single swing from the Caber can OneHitKill seven of the nine classes at their starting health, Valve understandably [[{{Nerf}} nerfed]] the Sticky Jumper back to the level of 'training equipment.' Player outcry appears to have gotten Valve to remove the 'take double damage' item penalties and brought the Sticky Jumper back to Lethal Joke status (though it was later smacked with a nerf that only allowed up to 2 stickies at once, to prevent the usual 8-sticky InASingleBound shenanigans that let Demomen cross the whole map in a second).
** Similarly to the Sticky Jumper is the Rocket Jumper; a counterpart training weapon for the Soldier. Like the Sticky Jumper, it negates all explosive damage. To some degree the weapons "Escape Plan" and "Equaliser" (two weapons that are duplicates and opposites of each other in terms of stats) has a taunt, which makes the Soldier grab one of his grenades, pull the pin, and blow himself up along with everything in the immediate vicinity. Normally, soldiers are loud and easy to spot, so it would be really hard to actually catch anyone in this (especially since they can just shoot your face in). However, with the Rocket Jumper, not only could you maneuver to the back lines extremely quickly and without drawing attention (you can jump extremely high without worrying about self-damage, and no one ever looks that high up), you also didn't die from your own suicide attack! This is especially potent against snipers and engineers setting up their sentries, as they will be completely vulnerable and unaware you're there and will generally be unmoving. Sadly, this has since been removed from the game.
** Another combination with the Rocket Jumper is a variant with the Market Gardener. The Market Gardener deals crits if you use it against someone while rocket jumping. This by definition means being in the air after RocketJumping. As the Rocket Jumper gave you "free" rocket jumps without hurting you, this made it the ideal pairing to the Market Gardener. Next up, however, are two items that takes this from "joke combination" to "lethal": The Mantreads and the B.A.S.E. Jumper. The Mantreads deal 3X fall damage to whoever you land on, if you would take fall damage. Since the Rocket Jumper lets you jump extremely high, most people use this to "cover" all their bases; they either whack the victim with the Market Gardener or stomp on them with the Mantreads. The other one is the B.A.S.E. Jumper, which lets you prolong your jump by slowing your fall. This, with correct timing, completely negates fall damage (as deploying it a split second before touching the ground slows you down enough), but also, because of what defines a "rocket jumping" strike, it also means you can slow yourself down and ''continually smack the same person for multiple rounds of crits''. Players would often find a way to jump as high as possible and deploy the Base Jumper and then glide about until they see a target, at which point they immediately drop down and re-open the B.A.S.E. Jumper, smacking the poor sod into oblivion.
** The Holiday Punch is a literal Lethal Joke Item. Whoever is punched by them [[BackStab in the back]] will be forced into a 5-second taunt, consisting of them laughing their virtual asses off and being completely immobile. The weapon itself is paired with the (lethal) Showdown Taunt, which also comes with the default fists, which instantly kills anyone standing in front of the Heavy. Normally, this taunt would be hard to pull off, considering it takes exactly 5 seconds to execute... The x10 servers crank up the chance for CriticalHit[=s=] making it much more likely for Heavy to force the poor souls to laugh.
%%** Scout's Home Run taunt, using the Sandman and Atomizer. Line up your opponent, taunt, and...
%%--->'''Scout''': Bada-SWING!!
%%** Pyro's other melee weapons (aside from his stock, milestone weapons, and ones that all classes can use). [[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Powerjack A car battery attached to a car jack with rubber bands]], [[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Back_Scratcher a rake]], [[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Postal_Pummeler a mailbox]], [[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Lollichop a huge lollipop]], [[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Neon_Annihilator a neon sign ripped from a Chinese bar]] and a ''[[https://wiki.teamfortress.com/wiki/Sharpened_Volcano_Fragment sharpened volcano fragment]]''.
* ''{{Videogame/Terraria}}'' has the firework rockets sold by the Party Girl. They're single-use items that are relatively expensive and only available in hardmode. They're considered furniture, meaning that they can only be placed on solid surfaces. However, said "furniture" also deals 150 damage to whatever they hit. With a lot of planning and timing, it is possible to use them to kill the FinalBoss EldritchAbomination in [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tlxntLDJl3U 3.5 seconds]].
* The Shield Gun from VideoGame/UnrealTournament2004. It's fine for blocking attacks, but has a terrible range in terms of dishing out attacks. Fully charged, however, it is capable of blasting away more than half of a victim's energy... provided they aren't shielded. This also works as a rocket jumper, but a very risky one.
* ''VideoGame/TimeSplittersFuturePerfect'':
** You'd think the Monkey Gun would be a simple joke item -- like hell it is. It has slightly limited use in that if you fire it, you have to use up the full 64 round magazine in one go (your limit is 4 mags total), but it gets rid of those in a fraction of a second, and just one of those rounds can be lethal. This makes it an excellent weapon if you're cornered by mooks.
** On a similar note, the Mag Charger is pretty useless -- until you realize that it can both see AND fire through literally ANY scenery on the game. It doesn't do a huge heap of damage, but it's accurate, fires quite rapidly, and anyone on the entire map is a viable target, even if you're completely hidden. Just have a back up for if someone gets too close, because it's no good in close quarters.
* The Squeaky Hammer in ''VideoGame/WaterWarfare.'' It slows you down, has no range, and temporarily replaces your water gun, and, when used on people, simply stuns them briefly... except during [[RandomNumberGod those rare instances]] where it acts as an instant KO. It also grants invincibility, at least.
* The Boots of Force from ''VideoGame/WizardsAndWarriors''. Why on earth would you want a short-ranged and awkward kicking ability when there are flashy projectile weapons you could get in that slot? First of all, it damages ''everything'', even the otherwise [[InvincibleMinorMinion unkillable enemies]]. Secondly, it does more damage than anything else in the game, including a guaranteed three HP of damage to any boss when most weapons do 1/2 HP at best. Finally, you can kick open chests that you don't have the key for.
* ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'': The Last Relic of Argus, an item made through Archaeology. It's got a random teleport effect that sends you who-knows-where, but its secret value is that the teleport spell takes only three seconds to cast, where the usual methods of teleport take ten seconds on average, making it a very effective escape hatch.
* ''VideoGame/XenobladeChroniclesX'' has the Ramjet Rifle. You get to keep it after field-testing it for a weapons researcher, who decides against developing it further as most of its stats are absolute garbage (for instance, it has an attack of ''one'' at a point in the game where other weapons of the same type will be closer to ten). The key word being ''most'': While its attack is awful and it has an absurdly long cooldown, it also gives 300 TP per attack, meaning with the right build you can practically spam powerful attacks that would otherwise take a while to build up TP for.
* ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' has [[WoodenKatanasAreEvenBetter Broken Bamboo Sword]]. Ordinarily, Equip Spells either boost the monster's ATK or give it an ability (for your cards) or lower the monster's ATK or impose a restriction (for your opponent's). Broken Bamboo Sword, meanwhile, increases the equipped monster's ATK by 0 and does nothing else, which means it does nothing but fill up the field, right? Well, actually, it has three support cards, all of which are game-changers. Golden Bamboo Sword lets you draw two cards, while Soul-Absorbing Bamboo Sword forces your opponent to skip their draw if the equipped card does damage, and Ghastly Bamboo Sword lets the equipped card attack directly, so long as you send a Bamboo Sword back to your hand (which makes it easy to recycle Soul-Absorbing Bamboo Sword). Basically, if you have Broken Bamboo Sword, you can duplicate the effects of Pot of Greed and Yata-Garasu, two of the strongest cards in the game.