Castlevania was pretty light on the gore for a horror series — until Symphony of the Night, that is. Alucard's ability to heal by absorbing blood made it necessary for lots of enemies to bleed. (Kill an Evil Butcher with a sword if you want to see some real gushworks.) Since then, probably because Symphony became the new model for CV games, enemies have bled profusely.
It gets even better in Order of Ecclesia, where the fight with Brachyura ends with you dropping a spiked elevator on the git, shoving him down fifteen screens of lighthouse and splattering him into a great many bits when you reach bottom. The bits are still there if you come back later. It's also possible to get killed just as you trigger the elevator, which results in both the boss and Shanoa gushing High-Pressure Blood until the elevator reaches the bottom of the shaft, the animation looping for around 30 seconds.
Since Symphony (it was first used with Richter in Rondo of Blood, but this game is where it became the standard), when the main character is killed it sends them screaming into the air while they turn into a cloud of blood. It makes strong attacks from bosses seem extra dramatic. It becomes hilarious when low on health, you lightly touch a minor enemy and get a completely over the top death.
Playing as Maria in Rondo of Blood spares her from Richter's overly bloody death, falling to the ground and disintegrating to nothing instead. She gains the overly bloody death in Portrait of Ruin.
An exception is Order of Ecclesia, where you only die in a cloud of blood if Shanoa is killed in the air. Landbound, she just groans and keels over.
The most gratuitously violent Castlevania to date is probably Harmony of Dissonance. There's one particular instance where you're just exploring some caves, you flick a switch... a scream is heard, blood starts pouring down like a waterfall, all this blood makes a platform rise, and you must ride it to the top. Once there, you get a glimpse at the source of all that blood.
Lords of Shadow: Being Darker and Edgier than most of the series up until this point, any flesh enemy killed with the subweapon they're weak to (Silver daggers for werewolves, holy water for undead, etc. etc.) or a heavy attack will explode into a shower of gore on contact.
In After The War, this will happen to Rodan if he falls from a great height or is killed by the Sentinel.
In God of War, pretty much everything results in ridiculous amounts of gore. Even an arrow to the cranium will cause total disintegration of the head in a massive shower of blood.
One of the gameplay features of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance is Blade Mode, in which you can cut enemies into pieces, ranging from standard Half the Man He Used to Be fare to ludicrous displays of gibs. A particularly crafty player, with enough energy and against the right foe, can reach engine-killing levels of gibs, cutting something into so many pieces that the game slows down to a snail's pace and even risks crashing.
The modern Ninja Gaiden release for the Xbox featured decapitations; the sequel on the Xbox 360 goes beyond its predecessor's decaps into full limb dismemberment and body mutilation, as the video downloadable here truthfully shows. Averted in the last of the modern trilogy, which does away this trope entirely for High-Pressure Blood.
The Onechanbara games are so gory that your character and their sword getting covered in blood are actually part of the game mechanics — once your character is sufficiently covered in blood, they go into a Super Mode that has the disadvantage of increasing the damage they take and constantly draining health, while you need to periodically clean the blood off your sword to keep it from getting stuck in enemies and to keep the combo timing regular.
The Dishwasher has a whole slew of ways to turn enemies into assorted bloodstains and organs, including, but not limited to: shotguns, overloading them with lightning attacks, pile-driving them into the ground, bashing their skulls into the ground/wall/ceiling, tearing their necks out with your teeth, and tried and true method of cutting them down the middle.
Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage and Ken's Rage 2 do this with loving faithfulness to their source material. Finishing off even just one Mook with a Strong Attack will often result in blood and unidentifiable body parts flying across the screen. At times it is possible to reduce more than fifty men to little more than a large red smear and a variety of airborne organs. Everything Fades, however, so this isn't quite the processor-killing event it could be.
Online [adult swim] flash game Viva Caligula does this when the titular character enters "berserk mode" or when a weapon is levelled up in the sequel.
The first Eternal Champions title is fairly light on gore. The Rated M for Money sequel Challenge from the Dark Side, however, is gorier than Mortal Kombat by virtue of anatomical correctness: if someone explodes, you don't get fourteen legs and five ribcages; you get shredded flesh, shattered bones and bloody organs.
Mortal Kombat, of course. Not only are the fatalities all ludicrously bloody, even normal punches and kicks cause spurts of blood.
Starting with Mortal Kombat II, when the creators went for the dark humor angle, most fatalities would create some actual ludicrous gibs from one character: a full-body 'splosion would yield about seven severed legs, twenty dog-bone-shaped bones, a lung or two, and nothing else. Another fatality would decapitate the victim three times in quick succession resulting in one headless body and three identical severed heads (which is an Ascended Glitch; in the original, if you were fast enough, you could perform Johnny Cage's fatality over and over again, knocking more heads off your opponent's body than humanly possible).
Mortal Kombat 3 adds two skulls and three ribcages per character to the mix (Ludicrous Ribs!). This is well noticeable when pulling Brutalities in Mortal Kombat Trilogy; the final exploding uppercut spreads across the battlefield enough skeleton parts for three to five people, even though you beat up just one. When the series went 3-D, fatalities would cause characters to break apart into weird chunks of flesh - reviewers dubbed these games the "bloody popcorn" era.
With Mortal Kombat 9, we are now treated to X-Ray Mode, which allows us to see bones and organs shattering inside the victim's body in real time. Characters can have their skulls fractured, eyes gouged, and intestines ruptured multiple times and still keep up the fight.
Speaking of robots, the fighting game One Must Fall 2097 had a secret function allowing the player to control how much "gibs" (gears and bits of metal in this case) would appear. At the highest setting, a single hit would release more scrap metal than the victim could possibly have contained. There was even an option to have metal gibs continually rain down throughout the match.
First Person Shooter
Blood: Mostly through the use of the amusingly overpowered napalm launcher, or any of three different varieties of dynamite. The gibs in Blood had the wonderfully gruesome property of being slippery under your character's feet, and for some reason the game developers saw the potential of including the ability to use zombies' heads (usually the largest surviving pieces of them after a close encounter with a barrel of high explosive) as soccer balls.
Borderlands embraces this. If you go back 10 levels and use a powerful weapon, the enemies will explode into gore, blood and random body parts. Doesn't help that one of the boss' bodies has its entire stomach opened up and the corpse never disappears. The body parts are still moving around and it is breathing.
Black Ops follows the same formula, though enemies' heads can no longer be exploded. However, even the lightest of light machines guns (like the 5.56mm Stoner 63 or the 5.45mm RPK) can now blow off limbs with the right aim.
The Nazi Zombies mode has plenty of gibbing. On Der Riese, when camping the catwalk, zombie corpses will slide back down the stairs when killed but gibbed body parts will not. This results in a heap of corpses at the bottom of the stairs, while the steps are littered with liberal amounts of dismembered hands and feet. Amusing and disturbing.
Black Ops II brings back decapitation with a vengeance, though only when using the machete or sword in single-player. Meanwhile, the .50 cal sniper rifles can now cause gibbing, as can the Executioner at close range. Curiously, though, getting shot by the Barrett M82 doesn't cause any such damage to Alex Mason— perhaps for the sake of keeping his heart-wrenching death from becoming either too gross or funny.
In Counter-Strike, a server-side mod for allowed for some extremely over-the-top gibbing. If you shoot someone with something like an AWP, you can see a fountain of blood coming out from the place where he was standing, all of that as you see his body torn to pieces!
Even without mods, a direct shotgun headshot on someone without a helmet qualifies. Plenty of salsa for the next party (quite chunky of course)! Slightly less over the top, but still silly, is the fact that players without a helmet lose more blood thanwhat should ever be in a human's head from something like a 9mm bullet, or even a knife slash. Not stab. Slash.\\\ That said, the game 'is programmed to show more blood if someone is shot in the head.
Deus Ex and its mod, The Nameless Mod. While rocket launchers and explosives are generally expected to blow people apart, poke at a body long enough, and it will explode in a mess of guts and gore, even if you do it with a weak weapon. Some of the new weapons in The Nameless Mod continue to follow this trope to a T.
Doom is one of the earlier examples of such overblown effects.
If lesser enemies (or players in Deathmatches) were hit with an attack that reduced their health to their starting health times negative one (i.e. negative 30 for a Shotgun Zombie, who starts with 30 health), they would be gibbed. This was a reasonable result when they were hit by rockets, but picking up a special "Berzerker" "Berserk" power-up enabled the player to gib enemies with his bare hands.
Sometimes you can melee-gib enemies even without the Berserker.
The Cyberdemon requires a lot of damage to be killed, 45 rocket hits, 55 shotgun blasts, or 400 handgun shots. No matter how much damage he's taken, he never shows so much as a dent until he is killed, but his only death animation is him exploding and leaving behind a pair of bloodied hooves. You can shoot him in the face with a shotgun 54 times, and he still has no visible damage, but he would vaporize when next hit by one bullet.
There's a mod called "Beautiful Doom" which, among other things, increases the gibs to, well, ludicrous levels.
Brutal Doom does this to such levels that the room you're in is literally painted with blood, and is the provider of the picture at the top of the page. You can also perform a fatality while in berserk mode in the same gore-happy fashion as Mortal Kombat, mouth monsters (Cacodemons, Pinkys, etc.) can literally bite your torso off, and the chainsaw can actually hack away at body parts with impressive results, even allowing you to 'liberate' the otherwise unusable Mancubus and Revenant weapons.
In Doom 3 the shotgun packs enough punch that if you hit a zombie with it at point blank range you'll tear all the flesh off its bones, reducing it to a bloodied skeleton.
Given the way gibs are calculated in the Doom series (total damage dealt must be equal to or greater than twice the monster's maximum HP) and the fact that Doom 3's zombies simply ragdoll and leave perfectly viable corpses behind, hitting a dead zombie with so much as a flashlight would usually cause it to explode violently.
Explosive weapons would gib enemies in Duke Nukem 3D, but the game also had a shrink gun that would miniaturize a foe and allow you to squish him under your foot, and a freeze ray that would allow you to freeze them solid and then smash them like ice statues.
There is a commercial add-on called Duke Xtreme that allows the user to increase the gore level.
The newest version of the Duke Nukem 3D High Resolution Pack mod feeds off this, with a separate patch specifically designed to stick blood spatter to walls! If you step into a corpse, you leave bloody footsteps for a while afterward. Also, whenever an enemy gets crushed by a big door, it leaves behind a disgusting mass of goo that stretches across the gap when said door is opened.
In EYE Divine Cybermancy, large-caliber weapons will cause enemies to explode into a fine red mist. The Damocles will cause enemies to explode, sending body parts flying.
Half-Life 1 was known for this, though not so much in the sequel. However, a third party mod known simply as "SMOD" took this to healthy levels (at least with "gore_moregore 2" on). Shoot a person in the head? A three second long spray of blood... twice. Somebody hits something going too fast? They explode. Vaporization? What was already a mesmerizing particle effect climaxes with them popping like a grape. And those invincible NPCs? Oh you better believe they were solely for target practice.
Although Half-Life 2 mostly avoids this, shooting Antlions with a revolver or shotgun causes it to explode.
Fighting medium-sized groups of Flood in Halo usually leaves behind a room almost fully covered in body parts of different size.
In Halo: Reach, getting headshots on the Drones (the bugs) turns them into this.
While the original Left 4 Dead is quite mild about this by today's standards, Left 4 Dead 2 turned the gibs up a couple notches. For instance, in Left 4 Dead, the zombies explode into a cloud of red mist if killed with a Pipe Bomb. In the sequel, their body parts are blown apart and intestines fly out as the bodies are ragdolled into the air. The guns themselves can gib zombies like there's no tomorrow. Depending on the gun used and what area of a zombie you shoot, you can expose their bones, make their intestines fall out, or even expose their spinal column. Oddly, the Special Infected do not present these properties.
A new gametype was recently introduced in Left 4 Dead 2: Gib-Fest. All players have M60 machine guns with unlimited ammo. It's...spectacular. Of course, the Explosive/Frag Ammo bumps up the gibbing to new levels. A stray bullet from this ammo type will SHRED common Infected to pieces.
All over the place in Painkiller. The titular weapon is like a food blender pumped up on steroids and evil, so the results are predictably gory. A shotgun blast can reduce a foe to chunks. Freezing enemies and then shattering them would break them apart. It doesn't stop there.
In Red Faction 2 there is cheat to make all shots on infantry a one hit kill, with lots of gibs provided. If you shot a friendly NPC with a LMG, you get lots and lots of gibs, and there is no friendly fire.... Priceless!!
Return to Castle Wolfenstein, running on the Quake III engine, has this when using rocket launchers, explosives and a BFG (the player character can also be gibbed, especially by Demonic Spiders with rockets). Zombie enemies can also explode when defeated, but without blood.
In the Oddly Named Sequel, Wolfenstein, gibs are not quite as prevalent, due to the change in engines. However, the Queen Geist and General Zetta (both of whom are bosses) still explode in a shower of blood and fleshy chunks when defeated.
Wolfenstein: The New Order, however, features a return to the gibs of old; grenades, rockets, and the Laserkraftwerk are all capable of making Nazis explode in a shower of bloody chunks. The automatic shotgun, assault rifle, and turret guns, on the other hand, can remove limbs, burst heads, or even blow a huge chunk of meat out of a guy's torso.
The trope name comes from Rise of the Triad, which positively revelled in ludicrous weapons and gibbing effects. The message Ludicrous Gibs! would appear on-screen whenever the player gibbed enemies in the most spectacular fashion allowed. This would usually involve chunks of flesh and splashes of blood being spread in a wide radius and a torn-out eye sliding down the screen. The Flamewall launcher would burn the flesh off enemies in a couple of seconds, leaving the charred (and smiling!) skeletons standing for a moment before collapsing (still smiling!) to the ground. The God Mode powerup enabled the player to launch enemy-seeking balls of lighting that would disintegrate, albeit bloodlessly, any enemy they touched. And, Apogee never being the types to pass up the opportunity for a cheap joke, Dog Mode allowed the player to charge up a sonic dog bark, spontaneously popping every Mook within range like a pressed grape.
Enabling "Engine Killing Gibs" mode in Rise of the Triad forcibly set all baddie-fragging animations to the "Ludicrous Gibs!" splatter, thereby increasing the amount of gore several times and creating massive clouds of body parts when enemies were blown up. If you watched closely you could see enemies' severed hands wiggling their middle fingers while flying through the air along with the eyeballs splattering into the screen and sliding down. Also, it's worth noting that while modern processors would (and do - look up GLRott) eat the game's code for lunch without missing a beat, in the 386/486 era during which the game was initially released, the amount of gore being rendered (with no GPU assistance as this predated true 3D games) may very well have been literally engine-killing, posing too great a challenge for the CPUs of the day to draw and either slowing the game to a crawl or crashing it completely.
In the original Quake, zombies would only die if gibbed. If just shot down they would wake up after a few seconds and resume attacking. Also, while in many games only explosive weapons can gib enemies, in Quake gibbing is calculated based on how much under zero an enemy's health goes. This generally works (if an enemy is in the middle of an explosion it makes sense that its health would go negative enough to cause gibbing), but it makes it possible to unrealistically gib smaller enemies with many shots of the Blaster, or even the Shotgun/Super Shotgun.
In Quake II, the only way to prevent the Medic's revival of fallen Stroggs is gibbing them. The super shotgun was enough to dismember a Stroggo, leaving a skinned torso spinning in midair and you could keep on shooting any corpse with a normal weapon until it gibbed. Given the habit of some monsters to get off several last shots after being taken down, a good number of players consider gibbing standard procedure for dealing with downed mooks. In the various Custom-TF mods, in which a player with the Warlock skill could gib corpses with his knife and use scattered chunks of meat to summon monsters.
Happens to everyone in Quake III Arena. Played with in that one of the available characters is a skeleton, which causes the game manual to wonder where all the gibs and blood comes from. Also, characters get gibbed if the killing attack had caused a lot more damage than it took to bring down his health to zero (in other words, well into the "negative health"). In fact, you could shoot corpses and cause them to gib in this manner.
Serious Sam had an option to provide "hippy" blood. The gibs from exploded monsters include apples, oranges, bananas, etc. The HD Updated Re-release is not only Bloodier and Gorier, but you can do this too. Plus carve up corpses with your knife should you feel inclined to.
This is rather the expected result of firing at infantry in Shogo: Mobile Armor Division, considering that you're driving a mecha a couple stories tall and your guns are of similar scale. One shot from virtually anything in your arsenal reduces them to bloody chunks.
The original Soldier of Fortune featured a ridiculously overpowered shotgun that could blow limbs clean off at an unrealistic range, a look-alike Desert Eagle pistol that could remove a head from the neck up and a microwave pulse gun that would cause enemies to cook from within and burst like overcooked hot dogs. One of the game's main selling points was the engine's attempt at (relatively) 'realistic' damage modeling compared to its competitors.
The second game has somewhat more realistic gore (though it advertised "16 points of dismemberment"), but Payback takes it Up to Eleven, with enemies practically Made of Plasticine and decapitations and amputations resulting in gory gushers, spewing more blood than is held in the typical human circulatory system. The novelty wears off quickly.
Strife, being the last game using the Doom engine, makes use of this trope. In addition, it provided special, gib-like animations for enemies that were immolated by your flame weapons or disintegrated by your Disintegrator Ray.
In Team Fortress 2, the Soldier, Demoman and Engineer classes can make their opponents explode into a shower of blood and body parts (with their rockets, grenades, and a fully upgraded sentry gun's missiles respectively). The postmortem death cam helpfully identifies the gib bits with nametags like "your head", "a bit of you" and "another bit of you." The "birthday" mode that can be turned on by the server operator results in some of the gibs looking like presents, party hats, and...chicken legs. This is taken up to eleven with 'sillygibs,' a mod that, when enabled, turns regular gibs into completely random (and obviously silly) objects such as wooden horses, rubber duckies, unicycle wheels, cogs, springs, hamburgers, license plates, etc., etc., etc. Literally ludicrous gibs.note It should be noted that some region-specific servers use this command to censor the gore, but most people still enable it for their own amusement.
In TimeSplitters: Future Perfect, shooting someone enough with the Injector will result in them swelling up then exploding. If it happens to you, you get treated to your view stretching before the inevitable happens. Using it on the mutants in story mode causes them to leap up, then explode.
The 2008 Turok game lets you blow up certain dinosaurs with explosives. The kicker is that their severed bloodied body parts twitch like mad on the ground before going lifeless.
Unreal Tournament takes this to ridiculous extremes with Instagib mode: Every combatant is armed with a shock rifle that shoots colour-coded laser beams that make players explode instantly into a shower of bloody chunks, "one shot, one kill"-style. Some user-made mutators (like "Gibalicious") increase the amount of gibs produced, possibly up to the point where the computer bogs down from the sheer number of gibs.
The titular vivisection point of the PC game ''Vivisector: Beast Within" allowed massive chunks of flesh to be ripped away from an enemy with little more than a pistol, and even the basic knife or scalpel weapon could completely gib an enemy without much difficulty under the right circumstances.
Hack And Slash
In Diablo II, any monster with the 'Fire Enchanted' trait promptly cover a decent amount of the ground with themselves upon death. This gets especially silly with the boss of the Flayer Dungeon, as you have to defeat him twice and has Fire Enchanted in both forms. Necromancers can do this to nearly any dead enemy with Raise Skeleton (Mage) or Corpse Explosion, as well.
Some monsters also break into gibs upon a normal sword-bashing death. It's funny to cast the resurrection spell with a necromancer on them and watch the death animation play backwards. Gibs fly into the air and connect with each other, forming a fully functional undead monster.
Interestingly, if one kills a swarm of locusts and attempts to raise a skeleton from the "corpse", the same bloody explosion will occur and produce a perfect human skeleton complete with weapon. Also, if you kill an enemy skeleton, you can cast the raise-skeleton spell on it, but first it too must explode in a shower of blood and gory effluence.
Aah, Corpse Explosion. Blow up a tiny Leaper or Fetish and get a blood fountain as glorious as if you'd blown up an entire Blood Maggot. A dry, fleshless Skeleton Warrior? Gibs aplenty. That one little animation, illogical as it may be, provides so much catharsis.
Many of the Druid's powers explode corpses too... carrion vines and solar creepers, for example, but also summoned Dire Wolves who always appreciate a quick snack and are apparently very messy eaters.
In Diablo III any enemy killed with a critical hit will explode (and the gibs themselves will be on fire/frozen/glowing with magic energy depending on damage type), all Unique monsters will explode when killed, some breeds of monsters explode no matter what... etc. This feature was so popular that shortly after the game's unveiling, Blizzard gave in to fan's demand that corpses stop fading away, just so they could see the aftermath.
The Monk has a technique called Exploding Palm - enemies struck by this explode when killed by DOT. Omae wa mo shinderu...
Torchlight also has enemies exploding into crimson showers on critical-hit induced deaths, and sometimes just normal deaths, as well as sporting a gib-related Steam achievement.
The sequel only gibs enemies immediately if the killing blow hits hard enough (as well as retaining crit-gibs). To compensate in other situations, using a smashing or explosive attack on dead enemies can now gib their corpses. Enemies can gib each others' corpses too.
Light Gun Game
Interestingly, Beast Busters and Zombie Raid went in the other direction. Dispatch any enemy in Beast Busters—even the normal zombie goons that can be dispatched with just one or two bullets—and they'll explode into lots of tattered pieces. Not much in the way of blood though, other than presumably-clotted blood. Meanwhile, Zombie Raid has a lot of not just zombies, but also werewolves, gargoyles, and ordinary human grave robbers. One rifle bullet more than suffices to turn a grave robber's upper body into an erupting mess of sinew. With no trace left of the erupting area's skin or clothing. Bosses, however, tend not to break apart; they just disappear in a mass of flames.
In Carn Evil, damn near everything gibs but the skeletons at the end. This is especially fun when it takes more than one shot to take an enemy down.
Similarly, House of the Dead's first three games had gibs that flew off based on the placement of the shots - you could blast chunks into fat zombies' stomachs and chip away at a zombie's skull. The fourth game and OVERKILL removed this feature.
In The Ocean Hunter, this doesn't occur for the most part, with most enemies being fairly bloodless deaths despite shooting them with an automatic harpoon gun. The boss of the sixth stage, however, is fought from the inside, and this trope is the sort of unavoidable result of harpooning its heart until it explodes.
In World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King, two quests involve collecting meat. One requires throwing high explosives at mammoths, the other requires throwing them into giant worms.
Prior to class changes, Death Knights could gain the attack "Corpse Explosion" which did exactly what you'd expect. This became even more ludicrous if upgraded so any enemies killed by the ability would then explode, potentially creating a chain reaction. It has since been downgraded to a cosmetic effect, though a large enough corpse can create a large shower of gibs.
The most gibs were generated by multiboxing Death Knights, meaning a large group of Death Knights being slave-controlled by one player. Extremely powerful at the time, they could quickly build up a large number of corpses and trigger a massive chain reaction of gibbing corpses.
One ogre in Deepholm chooses to fall to his doom in a massive propeller rather than be captured. His body explodes in a shower of meat and bones.
Malik the Unscathed explodes into gibs when he attempts to storm the Heart of Fear.
In Bio Menace, the mutants explode into showers of gibs upon death.
In Conkers Bad Fur Day you can explode enemies into bloody bits with the rocket launcher, take off somebody's head or just chunks of it with a few different kinds of guns, and slice torsos in half with the katana and chainsaw. For maximum overkill and hilarity if you kill somebody with the rocket launcher in the cramped hallways of the Heist multiplayer mode bloody guts will stick to and drip from the ceiling and walls, and the weasels will even comment on the gore. "What a f$@&ing mess!"
In the later levels of the cutesy freeware platformer Eversion, anything that dies explodes into plumes of blood, including the player character.
In I Wanna Be the Guy, whenever The Kid dies in this freeware Metroidvania game (and trust us when we say he will die...very often), he explodes into little 8-bit giblets. This is true even for something as minor as touching the edge of a spike pit, or getting hit by a falling apple. If a single pixel of your gun occupies the same place as a single pixel of a spike or apple... you explode. Across a quarter of the screen. With probably a dozen times the pixels that actually compose your avatar in the first place.
One aversion exists. If the Kid gets drained by a Metroid, he doesn't gib- he turns into brown dust and blows away. This is just as annoying as a normal death, however.
In Jump'n Bump, you and other players control adorable little bunnies which will explode into fountains of blood and gibs as you stomp on each other.
The original Japanese Rockman Zero games include quick bursts of blood-like substance when Zero destroys certain Ridiculously Human Robots with the sabre. This was removed in the American version.
Megaman ZX Advent takes it further, with a charged buster shot blowing huge holes in a dead enemy's torso. They also replaced the red liquid with similarily-shaped whiteish green bursts in all versions of the game.
Virtually everyone in freeware Video Game/Ninja Senki explodes into 8-bit gibs upon death, even ghosts and plants! The only exceptions are the temple and statue bosses (which collapse into piles of rock instead), Purple Flames and some sort of energy-spitting flying demon head - these simply get extinguished.
Oddworld: Munch's Oddysey had enemies (and allies) bursting into what appeared to be fried drumsticks when thrown into a meat grinder or if a weaker one had been possessed.
'Splosion Man. By god, Splosion Man. Ludicrous doesn't begin to cover it. The bodies of hapless scientists explode into showers of deli meats like steak and legs of ham.
In the Warhammer 40,000 RTS Dawn of War, units in melee can perform sync kills on other units, which are often bloody and gory. Of special note are the OrkWarboss' sync kill against most infantry units, where he grabs the unit in his claw and smashes it against the ground head-first as though a particularly angry child, and most of the Dreadnought sync kills, one of which involve grabbing the enemy in a claw and blasting it with a flamethrower, another of which appears to show the Dreadnought blending the unfortunate enemy. Add in that shooting enemies causes blood and gibs to fly out as well, and battlefields can get quite bloody. Large blobs of blood and organs will fly out of a corpse when they die, but the corpse itself remains completely whole as it falls to the ground, making one wonder where all those chunks of meat actually came from. Ludicrous indeed. This Rectified in the sequel, where powerful attacks can literally shred the enemies into pieces.
Blizzard paid a lot more attention to it in the sequel, with the method of death affecting what happens afterward.
While Hyrule Total War is limited to make units covered in blood during gameplay, it has pretty gory cutscenes. For example, in mission 12 we see Veran's arms being ripped off and shortly thereafter Bongo getting guillotined.
As a matter of fact, ALL of Bungie's pre-Oni games were absurdly bloody, with explosions actually liquefying those caught in most blasts.
Fat Princess has quite a bit of gore and blood, despite the fact that everything else is rather cutesy. The characters resemble the humans in Animal Crossing but when they die there are huge puddles of blood.
Liero takes this to a ridiculous extreme by having a giblets setting. If it's high enough, even lightly wounded characters will leave a bloody mess just by walking. This can be kind of strange if you've chosen, say, an ant as your character skin.
Bungie's Myth series of RTT games had hunks of blood and gore flying off melee'd opponents and staining the landscape wherever the physics engine had them bounce (with limbs and heads also flying everywhere upon most deaths), high explosives causing victims to be blown to dozens of bloody bits, putrid hunks of pus falling from the undead, and a special unit (the ghol) which would pick up these things to be used as weapons.
The game's health system is very in-depth, keeping track of every part of every character's body down to eyes, internal organs, and individual fingers and toes. Gibs, represented as red 2s (or green, or grey, depending on whether it bleeds blood or goo), will litter the surrounding environment if enemies are dismembered, disemboweled, hacked in two, or thrown into a wall with enough force to blow apart. It gets even better in adventure mode, which lets you take control of a single adventurer. This mode includes a blow-by-blow account of every fight, and the ability to pick up and throw the severed bits of enemies (or anything else, for that matter). Thrown objects — even socks, or small fluffy animals — will often hit with deadly force, breaking bones, damaging organs, or splattering brains across the floor. Ludicrous gibs indeed.
It's not unheard of for outside-the-fortress battles in DF to involve goblin limbs ending up in trees. And then there's the aforementioned "thrown into a wall" example, in which parts can go several vertical levels above the original goblin. That's taller than the tree he hit.
A large group of creatures dropped from a great height into a pit can create a wondrous geyser of gore rivaling that of the well scene from Army of Darkness. As demonstrated here.
Now have fun having all your dwarves murder your FPSnote Frames Per Second, a measure of game speed via pathfinding to retrieve all the body parts...also, hope you've got like fifty butcher's workshops set up. At least. And don't even think about trying that in an evil biome, unless you want every single one of those bits and pieces to later rise from their splattery grave and dogpile your dwarves to death.
Role Playing Game
The first two Fallout games rewarded the player with extra gruesome death animations that would play some of the time if the player inflicted a large amount of damage in a single attack. If one gave the player character the special trait "Bloody Mess" during creation, the most spectacular death animations would always play when an enemy died. The full list of splattery animations is:
Shot or stabbed to death (a bare punch is also good): A large hole appears in the target's torso and an arm is ripped off.
Machinegun Mayhem: The body is split into tiny pieces by the bullets, and only the legs and lower torso remain.
Melted Alive: Plasma weapons cause first the target's skin, then the skeleton, to melt into a green puddle.
Laser Cut: Laser weapons and the solar scorcher cause a clean cut in the middle of the target's torso, separating the target in two.
Crispy Critter: Flamethrowers cause the target to burst into flame. Also known as the "Burning Bitch Dance".
Electrified: Pulse weapons and the alien blaster cause the target to light up in an electric blast and vaporize into thin air. (This usually isn't as good, as it causes lootable items to fall on the ground, so that they must be picked up one by one.)
In addition, there's the high-level perk Sniper: Luck stat * 10 = critical hit chance. In other words, with 10 luck all your shots become crits, generally resulting in one of the animations described above. Damage per shot becomes less important than the sheer number of shots fired, resulting in situations in which spraying a group of opponents from one of the weak submachineguns causes most of them to instantly explode into fleshy chunks.
Graphical technology not advanced enough? That wasn't enough to stop Fallout's predecessor! Wasteland featured such lines as "Rabbit is reduced to a thin red paste" and "Thug explodes like a blood sausage".
Fallout 3 ups the antes where Bloody Mess will sometimes cause surreal ludicrous gibs.
Like firing a 10mm pistol once at a Super Mutant's torso (Super Mutants are big, hulk-like mutants) only to watch his arms, legs and head rip from his body (in slow motion!) from the force of the hit. Or total chunkification of the body. And that can happen with the weakest gun in the game.
Also, there is the Rock-It Launcher, which lets you shoot random junk at guys. So you can make an enormous super mutant master explode into its various component parts by shooting it with oh, say, a plastic car. Or a teddy bear. Or those old books you find everywhere. Behold the power of reading! Old, pre-war paper money works too.
Decapitations and other forms of dismemberment are ridiculously common even without the Bloody Mess perk anyways. The body part you land the killing blow on will almost always fall off if the killing blow also results in crippling that limb. If you get a critical hit with the Plasma Rifle, you can see the head fly away even while it and the rest of the body is melting into goo. Not to mention the Railway Rifle, which shoots railway spikes that pins such a flying body part to any nearby wall. Finally you've got the two-headed Brahmin cows, where shooting one head off inexplicably causes the other one to fall off as well.
If you enjoy hacking, you can put Liberty Prime's Liberty Laser into your weapons inventory. At 1200 strength, it's about 20 times stronger than the strongest normal weapon in the game. This basically means that not only will anything you point it at instantly die, they will also turn into a giant mass of flying red chunks that shoot out for miles across the map.
Bloody Mess is back for Fallout: New Vegas, along with a host of new weapons. Notable entries include:
The Red Glare (full-auto rocket launcher), Ballistic Fist (power fist with a sawed-off shotgun mounted on it), chainsaw, and Two-Step Goodbye (a Ballistic Fist with a rocket launcher instead of a shotgun), which has the listed effect "Critical Kill = BOOM!"
Displacer Glove, or Pushy if you're feeling ambitious. You'll get some nice scattering, and can easily uppercut someone's head off, or sometimes even reduce their whole body to so many meatballs travelling at high speeds towards the nearest wall.
Bloody Mess actually serves a (non-amusing) purpose in the Dead Money DLC. The Ghost People enemies have the unique ability to revive so long as all their limbs are intact, and are more resistant to limb damage than ordinary enemies. But with Bloody Mess, you're a lot more likely to put them down on the first try.
Wizardry 8 has this, even though it makes absolutely no sense. It's medieval fantasy, mostly medieval weaponry (aside from some guns and explosives), but there are maybe three or four enemies that don't explode when killed. Still, it's a great game, so gibbing a rat by stabbing it with a knife is a minor slight.
Dungeon Siege 2 does this, despite being medieval fantasy. Gibbing seems to occur if enough damage is done to push an enemy over a certain point of negative health, most likely a percentage, they will explode violently into pieces, flying every which way. While it might make sense for some of the power attacks, which deal huge damage and have effects that would warrant a violent mess, seeing an enemy explode into fragments from a single quarrel to the chest is rather absurd. The fact that every party member is usually capable of making enemies into such a mess at the same point, this can lead to some very interesting times when leading a powerful team up against a small army of inferior enemies.
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion features a spell called Enemies Explode. It wasn't until a combat mod (Deadly Reflexes if memory serves) was released that featured a revamped system of combat complete with dismemberments and various other fatal effects where a spell was included that achieves just such an effect.
Baldur's Gate, on the Core Rules difficulty, causes anyone who is killed with massive damage (i.e. reducing them to -10 hit points with a single blow) to explode into pieces, preventing any possibility of resurrection.
Some of the Harmonic Combinations result in an enormous cloud of red, and it's extremely gratifying to see the ridiculous blood-fountain that occasionally results from slaying an enemy with basic sword attacks.
In an (in-engine) cutscene, the use of the rifle Mirabelle causes someone to explode into bloody chunks if gore is turned on. It's a good weapons, but not that good!
Gibbing is used much more, as default enemy death results in gibbing. It literally happens all the time in ordinary combat; i.e. stabbing an enemy to death with an ordinary dagger will cause an enemy to literally explode in a burst of limbs blood and guts.
Using blood magic, especially in the (aptly named) cut scenes, is similar. Blood mages typically begin a blood-spell with a knife drawn across the palm, which one would expect to result in a trickle of blood. Instead, gore erupts as if the mage had stuck his/her arm into a Cuisinart up to the elbow.
This game has the "Destruction" spell, which destroys most targets with a cloud of blood and imploding gibs, even if it's an object, such as a door or crate. This spell can also be applied (up to level 40) to gloves (punch the enemy/object for gibs), weapons (hit the enemy/object for gibs), and armor (get hit to gib the enemy).
The Epic Feat Devastating Critical does the same to anyone hit by said Criticals (And bear in mind that NWN deviates from standard 3.0 D&D in terms of limiting the range of rolls that will generate a critical, so it could be as high as 1 critical per 2 swings). Doing enough damage to destroy an object will smash it into flinders, as above. This gets truly ridiculous when you have say, a halfling barbarian, wielding a dagger, destroying what appears to be an iron-bound chest...
This is also what happens to mooks nine times out of ten if you turn the game's gore setting all the way up. Fight undead using a cleric or paladin, and Hilarity Ensues.
In Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines, the highest level Thaumaturgy ability for the Tremere makes the target's blood to boil, causing them to explode, and anyone nearby takes damage. Needless to say, using it in public will really freak out anyone not in on the Masquerade.
Mass Effect 1 tends to avoid actual bloodshed, but certain ammunition types have disturbing effects on slain enemies. Incendiary and explosive rounds cause them to vanish in a cloud of glowing ash, while proton rounds make their victims disappear in a cloud of ionized gas and electricity. Chemical, radioactive, and polonium rounds make enemies melt into puddles of green goo, and cryo rounds make victims ice over, followed by them inexplicably exploding a couple of seconds later. (Fridge Brilliance: cryo rounds freeze all the water in the victims' bodies, and since water expands when frozen, it's hardly surprising they break apart [it's why cryostasis doesn't work in real life]. Still doesn't explain why it also happens to geth though....)
The books, on the other hand, love to go into detail on how even minor wounds with normal ammo renders a victim's limbs to "hamburger meat".
The mop is definitely needed in Mass Effect 3. Reaper forces tend to be rather messy when killed, and headshooting with pistols, sniper rifles, or shotguns tend to result in reducing the target's head to salsa. Should you overkill with an explosive of some manner, their entire body is reduced to gibs. And the "Carnage" ability is rather aptly named. And for extra fun, there are some weapons like the Scorpion Grenade Pistol and Krysae Sniper Rifle that will automatically cause this to happen to enemies they kill.
Shoot Em Up
In the 0.95 version of Hellsinker this would happen if you got hit.
The original NARC arcade game. Blast an enemy with explosives, and watch the graphically detailed gibs fly. Even the NES version got this past the radar. Then again, with all the other filth in the game, it's a wonder Nintendo approved it at all.
Xop and Xop Black. You can actually adjust the level of it, which affects the flaming explosions in case of robotic enemies and the amount of Alien Blood in case of everything else, all the way to, well "ludicrous". At that level dying organic level bosses release so much internal fluids that the screen doesn't have enough space to show it all, and it can even obscure the enemy fire.
Justified in Dead Space: it's all about blowing off the enemies' limbs because headshots don't work.
In Resident Evil 4, when you kill an enemy with a headshot, its head explodes — a bit over-the-top, but not totally unreasonable. However, the same thing happens if you kill them by kicking them.
There's also the microwave projector "gun" in No Regret, which zapped the victim with enough microwave radiation to not only kill them, but also boil all the moisture in their body at once, making them explode in a steam-filled cloud of cooked flesh...
Gears of War is known for its famous chainsaw bayonet, which neatly slices Locust into various limbs amidst showers of blood that coat the screen and, yes, even impair the player's vision through sheer ludicrousness. A well-aimed headshot yields fountains of alien juice and ambiguous blobs of flesh spraying copiously from the neck, and, if timed correctly, a blow to the face can completely sever the cranium.
The gibbing really comes out with shotguns or anything that explodes. Most notably, a well-placed shot from the boomshot can sometimes result in dismembered limbs flying 30+ feet in the air.
Jet Force Gemini combines this with Art-Style Dissonance: the game looks like a cartoonish, kid-friendly game... and then you realize that exploding enemies causes a huge shower of blood everywhere with a wet splattering sound, you can decapitate enemies (and certain allies) with headshots, and exploded enemies leave limbs behind.
In Jagged Alliance 2, a head shot from close range sometimes causes the enemy's head to burst apart, releasing a gush of High-Pressure Blood from the neck stump. A close-range chest impact could cause a similar burst of blood to fly from the back of the enemy (or even one of your own mercs or NPCs) as the unfortunate victim was flung about 1,5 meters backwards. Also, grenades or mortar rounds could turn people into (briefly) living torches.
Oddly enough, though, said grenades or mortar rounds didn't cause ludicrous gibs, instead, they're either reduced to ash (after flaming to a crisp), or die normally.
Every kill in Vandal Hearts results in a high-powered geyser of blood erupting from the victim. Even skeletons. The only exceptions are mechanical enemies and living statues, who die with a high-powered geyser of...gravel?
Wide Open Sandbox
In Cortex Command crashes and explosions cause gibs, and just falling a little too far is liable to break off a leg. Rocket and dropship engines in earlier versions would tear anybody under them to shreds. While they merely push actors now, they will break off from the ship and go flying in whatever direction they please if shot in the right place, often turning soldiers into red mist. The dropship doors are worse, though; they have a reputation for always finding troops after the ship explodes.
The dropship itself, after one or both engines are damaged/blown off, drops to the ground and either explodes outright or waits a while and then does. When troops are nearby, the resulting cloud of rapidly expanding shrapnel has the tendency of going from metal-gray to blood-red very quickly.
Some weapons are meant to be fired from huge mech actors, but can be equipped to any actor. If someone too small fires the weapon, it's liable to have enough recoil to make them explode.
Destroy All Humans! and its sequel see the Mooks incinerated in a flash of yellow embers when killed with the Disintegrator Ray. Vehicles simply explode.
Every time you kill someone in No More Heroes, they explode into a huge shower of blood. The game was pre-emptively censored by the developers for Japan and Europe, with the splatter replaced by an explosion of black pixels and coins raining down, which still kind of fits the mood in an old-school arcade game kind of way.
In Saints Row: The Third, hitting someone with a fully-charged blast from the Sonic Boom or the Apoca-Fists will cause them to explode in a splatter of blood. There's even a cheat that causes anyone killed by any means to explode into ludicrous gibs, which is particularly amusing when combined with the Groin Attack button (perhaps the funniest instance of a Self-Destruct Mechanismever).
Scarface: The World is Yours had a sniper rifle, shotgun, carbine and a Desert Eagle capable of dismembering foes. Of course, there's the chainsaw too.
Terraria has every living thing in it explode into a few bloody chunks when it dies, no matter what killed them. Thus, blood moons and goblin invasions tend to make a big mess when you're done. It's kind of mitigated by the art style, though.
Believe it or not, in Kirby's Pinball Land, if Kirby falls down the pinball board and the player fails to launch him back up, he explodes into bits! Yes, you read that right.
In Viscera Cleanup Detail, your job is to clean up the gibs and blood left behind. Or spread it around some more.
Non-video game examples:
Anime And Manga
Gantz - nearly all deaths, and even many non-fatal episodes... Which is saying something for an  series of nearly 400 chapters, with an in-panel body count in the thousands, literally (with multiple events in different arcs producing hundreds of mangled corpses in a matter of pages). With realistic 3D CG art, detailed anatomy, and common loss of limbs. Oh, and better yet, the author rarely splattered someone that "had it coming" - instead of cheering, the audience was more likely to be emotionally invested in or at least sympathizing with the newest crop of brutal deaths.
Late in Shikabane Hime, Hokuto punches someone so hard they turn into red mist and leave nothing but their kimono floating off in the wind. Noteworthy for being a case of "slapping into a red mist" not being hyperbole.
In episode 7 of Suisei no Gargantia, Ledo attempts to fight a Hideauze, or squid-like creature humanity is at war with, underwater. However, due to the risk of hitting a friendly, as well as the sheer difficulty of aiming and using beam weaponry, Ledo orders his mecha Chamber to grab it, and squeeze it until it explodes. Large chunks of it splatter onto Chamber as a result.
Happens constantly in the manga adaptation of One Punch Man. The sheer power on display means that people and monsters die in absurd and excessive ways, often leaving body parts scattered across the page. One person is even turned inside out by a single punch that leaves a four-foot-wide hole in their chest.
During the superheroes' abortive attempt to prevent the 9/11 attacks in The Boys, one hero tries to push her way through the panicked passengers at supersonic speed. This results in a fountain of ludicrous gibs spraying out of the plane.
In Uber, the Ubers regularly turn ordinary humans into bloody salsa with their Eye Beams.
In the Spy vs. Spy comics in MAD, the characters would sometimes explode without gore: just a big poof with their clothes flying everywhere. Once Peter Kuper took over the series in 1997, he generally tended to render the spies' wounds much more explicitly.
Master Ox: What's in the box, Shen? Shen: Want to see? It's a gift. It's your parting gift. In that it will part you. Part of you here, part of you there. And part of you waaay over there, staining the wall.
Films — Live-Action
Army of Darkness. At one point, a human is dragged into a pit by a monster. For best results, bear in mind at this point that the human body contains about 5 litres of blood. Now watch as a geyser of blood blasts out of the pit.
bomb designed to go on the back of the head to control an adversary goes off, completely disintegrating the entity and leaving nothing but a fine red mist. Granted, it was at waist level, but not even a shoelace was left.
In another scene, sunlight hits a vampire's jaw - it blows apart in a gory mess upon contact.
In Centurion, a Pict is thrown head first into a tree. His head explodes.
District 9. In amid all the totally serious, gritty Apartheid metaphors are a bunch of alien weapons that can do all kinds of fantastically gory things to a body. It's horrifying at first, and then it's just awesome: they explode into tiny little pieces that litter the landscape. From a single shot from a man-portable small arm that can be held in one hand if need be. Which possibly doesn't need reloading. The first time you see one used, the recipient splatters across the main character's face. It's actually a funny spot, which is needed considering the darkness of the movie.
In Doomsday, just about the only character who doesn't explode in a shower of gore when he dies is Sergeant Norton.
In Elysium, there are a few glorious instances of people exploding (as well as one droid turned into scrap metal in a similar fashion). The main villain is dispatched by being thrown off a gantry with a live grenade attached to him; he's blasted into several large chunks.
Kill Bill- Boss Tanaka, in what can only be described as a fountain of blood. High-Pressure Blood doesn't begin to describe it. Most of O-Ren's story is somewhat like this.
In The Last Stand, a mook is wearing a bandolier of shotgun shells when they get hit by a signal flare. The shells start to cook off, then a lot of them explode at once, effectively blowing his torso apart.
In Man of Steel, the Kryptonian brute is shown ripping apart an A-10 and crushing the pilot before they could eject. Because it is seen from a distance it isn't too gruesome, but there is no mistaking the "pink mist" spraying into the wind.
Weapons used in Men In Black actually go so far into the ludicrous department it's no longer grotesque. The aliens simply explode into slime, which is less disgusting than gibs and less disturbing than gutted bodies.
K: Oh, you've got some entrails on you..
Oblivion (2013) : What happens to anybody who gets hit with the drones' weapons. Exhibit A: Victoria 49.
The scene where one of Boddicker's flunkies gets dosed in toxic waste. As he shambles about the factory, begging for help, he gets hit by a speeding Bodikker. His body bursts the same way a water balloon would.
Not quite "gibs," but there's also the OCP executive chosen to demonstrate ED-209's capabilities. He gets riddled with hundreds of bullets before someone finally pulls the plug.
In order to emulate the comic series on which is was based, gibs were used in Sin City to the point where simple punches and kicks would result in a big, sloppy gush of blood. It matches the over-the-top nature of the comic series.
Tremors: Graboids + bombs = raining gibs. This is really a Running Gag, as the characters are usually spattered with the aforementioned gibs.
Tremors 4: Graboid + traction engine + big hook and belt = raining gibs.
TRON: Legacy: Sure, it's technically the computerized form of blood, but the majority of program deaths have them dying in a graphic spray of voxelsnote 3D pixels, represented here as little glowing cubes, like safety glass.
Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning is awash with blood and gore. So much that it got an NC-17 rating, and some scenes had to be cut/edited for its theatrical release.
Machete, though many viewers have expressed disappointment that most of the gore is computer-generated.
''Cloverfield, if you get bit by a "parasite" you explode IN HALF. It's also contagious!
The Rambo series was somewhat light on the gore until Rambo IV. The end battle especially. For starters: Exploding heads, gallons of blood everywhere, a guy literally gets his leg torn off by bullets, blown apart by mortar shells, and Big Bad getting eviscerated by Rambo at the end. And don't forget the poor saps that were sitting in the jeep that were Rambo's first two victims of the last battle.
Played straight in Calvin and Hobbes of all places. Calvin is making a traffic safety poster with the slogan "Be Careful or Be Roadkill!" We never see the finished result, but he states that he hopes he has enough red crayon, and later mentions that he splattered the whole thing with chunky spaghetti sauce so that not only would it look real, it would attract flies.
The Halo novel Contact Harvest introduces the M99 Stanchion, a coilgun sniper rifle capable of inducing this trope on anyone it hits. Considering it fires a .21-cal round at 15 kilometers per second, the gory effects are realistic/expected.
In the Dale Brown novels Fatal Terrain and Warrior Class, an aircrewman is shredded by a fighter's cannon and a triple-A emplacement, both firing 23mm rounds, respectively. In Strike Force, Hal Briggs, his Mini-Mecha already severely damaged by anti-tank missiles, is put down for good by 30mm cannon.
In last book of the third series of Warrior Cats, Hollyleaf falls in rage and shreds mouse to pieces, until all that remains of it is described as red pulp.
In the Paladin of Shadows book Unto the Breach, Viktor Mahona takes a 12.7 round through his abdomen and much of his body simply disappears.
In The Wheel of Time, Mazrim Taim establishes the viability of male wizards, long shunned because they're doomed to go insane, with a single command: "Asha'man: kill." It's not described precisely what spell the Asha'man use, but when applied to the front rank of the attacking army, it causes its members to explode. And it can be applied to the succeeding ranks very, very quickly. The aftermath (described in the next book) goes on at some length about the burial of the victorious dead, in clear contrast to the defeated.
Mack Maloney's Wingman series of pulp novels often included descriptions of what happens when the pilot of a plane (or an unfortunate soldier on the ground) is even clipped by a 20mm round from a Vulcan gun. Considering that Hawk Hunter has six of them mounted on his F-16, they don't fare well.
In Raising Steam death by steam engine turns people into red mist. Halfway plausible when applied to boiler explosions, a very real danger of the Steam Age, but not with a death that leaves the engine intact and might have involved a blast of live steam. (A horribly painful way to die, but not annihilating.)
On Supernatural, when an angel attempted to fight an archangel, bystanders ended up picking bits of the unfortunate angel Castiel out of their hair. It happened to the same angel again later, this time from Lucifer.
Castiel got his revenge, though. In his new role as The Starscream and the new God, he did it to Raphael in the season 6 finale.
Then there was the time Bobby, not possessing a bamboo dagger blessed by a Shinto priest, threw an okami into a wood-chipper.
There's an example in Dark Heresy's Critical Damage tables, where the developers took what looks to me like a disturbing amount of glee in describing, for example, the results of a high-explosive shell to the head. Some damage results can result in other characters being injured by flying shards of bone. This is turned up to Ludicrous Gibs when one considers how Critical Existence Failure works in this game. A starting character can take approximately ten damage before hitting the Critical Damage charts. These charts are rough, but generally survivable, up to roughly 8 points of critical damage. If a starting character is hit with a burst of bolt gunfire for 17 damage, he may be critically injured on the ground. Then when he is punched in the face for two more damage, his head may spontaneously explode, because that's what the Critical Damage Chart says happens.
As does Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay, although the lower tech level means that it isn't quite as gory. Still more than qualifies though. Dark Heresy is set in the Warhammer 40,000-verse.
In regular Warhammer 40,000, the "Instant Death" rule serves to represent this trope. When a model is hit by a weapon of sufficient calibre (typically a weapon with a Strength of twice or over the model's Toughness value, usually something like a lascannon or missile launcher), it doesn't matter how many Wounds they have, they're dead. The game even notes that "it can be imagined that the target exploded in a suitably gory fashion".
Kind of up to the Game Master, but in Paranoia experimental weapons from R&D quite frequently have ... interesting ... effects upon the target. And the user. And the user's teammates. And, oh, everyone within a half-mile or so. Paranoia is for GMs who like killing player characters, and players who don't mind their characters dying if they can do so in an entertaining way. "I press the red button on the strange black gizmo I got from R&D." "A voice comes from it: 'Tactical Thermonuclear Warhead activated. Detonation in 2.3 seconds. Have a nice daycycle, Citiz-BOOOOOOM!'"
The old Middle Earth Role-Playing Game had some quite... interesting critical hit tables. One for each damage type. They included lines like "The electrical shock vibrates the targets' bones into dust." and "The target is hit in the ear, all the ear-wax runs out."
This is true of its parent game Role Master, which featured not only spectacular criticals which would shame Mortal Kombat, but slips on imaginary turtles for the critical fumbles.
The Order of the Stick's Belkar Bitterleaf turned his Evil Counterpart (well, Good Counterpart) into a salsa dip (extra chunky) after getting a large number of adventurers to gank him. Or at least, cut off his tail and stuck it into a jar of salsa. He also used said kobold's head as a chip bowl. The kobold in question is attempting to avenge his father, whose head ended up as Belkar's hat.
Rustallica's decapitation-by-pineapple in Sarah Zero.
The Sacrifice comic on L4D.com features some incredibly over-the-top gibs.
Exterminatus Now#474: "Stay Sanguine" has Simmons talking with a seer named Dewhurst over hologram. It's fairly obvious from the first panel that Dewhurst is covered in blood, and he's directing a cleanup effort through the whole page.
Dewhurst: Well we must've been pointed right at the anomaly, because right as we opened channel, the psyonic blowback took both of my espers out like that. Simmons: ... What do you mean 'took out'? Dewhurst:(yelling at somebody offscreen) Gavin! You're just spreading it around, you pillock! Did your mum never teach you how to use a mop? Simmons: Never mind.
Any high-explosive or fragmentation weapon, from a simple hand grenade to a bunker-buster, can turn a human being to red paste. The more powerful the explosive, the thinner the paste...
During the infamous Byford Dolphin Explosive Decompression accident, one of the divers was sucked through the hatch and "reduced to pot roast".
Being sucked into a jet engine. Anyone who has survived it is because the jet engine was shut down before they hit the blades at full force. There are pictures easily searchable on the Internet depicting what happens when the blades are NOT stopped before a person is sucked into them. Search at your own risk, in synopsis, there is nothing left that is easily identifiable as belonging to a human. Even the cloths are covered in too much gore to recognize them from the rest.
Speaking of planes, when a passenger plane collides with terrain or water at a high rate of speed, its occupants will often be shredded by the impact forces. Take Swissair Flight 111 for instance, which impacted the Atlantic Ocean at nearly 350 MPH. There were 229 people on the plane. Investigators recovered 15,000 separate body parts: 66 parts for every person on the plane.
There's a picture that can be found on the internet if one searches the right places that has a man who was shot in the head with a powerful sniper rifle. The rifle in question was a Barret .50 Caliber rifle). Search at your own risk.
Although not any less brutal, these images are getting more and more common. Since every rebel on the streets these days has a mobile phone with camera, you can now even see such things on video. It's still not advised to look for it, although news agencies are also showing them more and more often on prime-time TV.
There's a reason why we're called "water sacs" in most fiction; we tend to explode violently.
A similar instance of this occurred in a crowded street in Tainan City, Taiwan. The corpse of a beached sperm whale was being transported on the back of a truck to a facility for study, during which the buildup of gas from decomposition caused part of the carcass to violently explode and shower the entire area with blood and entrails. The resulting mess and lake of blood were described as being disgusting and smelling absolutely foul.
There is an unofficial rule among emergency workers in most racing series that no racer is formally declared dead at the track unless this trope applies (one version described: "Nobody dies unless they are decapitated or incinerated in their car"). Anything short of Ludicrous Gibs and at least SOME resuscitative effort will be attempted until the driver can be declared DOA at a hospital.
Per at least one book on IRL safety operations, this was put in place after Gordon Smiley's death in 1982 (which in and of itself would qualify for this trope) which delayed Indy 500 qualifying for four hours until a coroner could be summoned.
Of technical note—in many jurisdictions, the one circumstance where an EMT can declare resuscitative efforts futile (and thus declare death) is the "decapitation or complete incineration" scenario—basically declaring Death By Ludicrous Gibs.