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Basically, when a boss has a weakness based on his accompanying mooks being used against him. It can come in various forms, such as that the mooks are thrown back at the boss
or that their attacks are reflected onto him. Please note that it only fits the trope if the mooks are directly beneficial to the player. It is not a weakness if they just refill your life bar
or keep you separated from the boss
(defeating them leading up to a chance to hit the boss).
In boss fights, the mooks have
to be thrown or punted (or launched from a cannon/catapult/etc.) in order to count for this trope. Mooks being "mind controlled" into attacking the Boss is Helpful Mook
. controlling the mooks to attack the boss is Big Dumb Body
Outside bosses, some puzzles provide you with mooks for you to use as bombs to destroy objects or walls if they are Action Bombs
. There are obviously other ingenious variations of this, like them being normal mooks that you can throw to other mooks to make them both fall off a ledge or simply just damage them.
The mooks in both cases here are often Respawning Enemies
. Because if they don't respawn, it would render the puzzle/boss a Marathon Boss
at best, or make it Unwinnable
Having a Grapple Move
is often obligatory (you can't throw what you can't grab). Sister trope of Boss Arena Idiocy
. Compare Tennis Boss
for when the boss' attacks can be thrown back at them. Subtrope of Tactical Suicide Boss
, since the boss would be invincible if it didn't have/spawn minions around. Related to Flunky Boss
, it's also listed there as a "variation".
Compare Surrounded by Idiots
, where someone is done in by the incompetence
of their mooks.
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- Silhouette Mirage: Enemies in this game display either of the two attributes, Silhouette and Mirage. Silhouette-attribute energy is harmful to Mirage enemies and vice versa.
- You fight Delia, a Mirage boss, in a room where the two are out of reach of each other. The only thing he does is fill his mana meter by inhaling the Mirage soup in the huge pot and use a long-range special attack. And the only way to damage him is to poison the soup by chucking Silhouette cooks into the soup.
- Gargantuan gathers energy by absorbing same-attribute matter from the outside. If it absorbs matter with different attributes, it will take damage and change its attribute. The player character wonders where to find the "matter", but as soon as the battle begins, mooks of both attributes start appearing...
- Geluve has the ability to possess mooks and use them as her "arms". The only way to do damage to her is to blast her arms. The game has a Game-Breaking Bug in which she will not summon new mooks.
- In Devil May Cry 4, Mission 6 has The Containment Room. The "boss" is the glass which separates you and Agnus, and the mooks are Gladius—basically Flying Lizard Swords. You can go ahead and attack the glass itself, but you will do very little damage. the trick here is grab the critters with Buster and aim at the glass to throw it there.
- You fight Agnus more directly at the end of mission 9. While not the main gimmick of the fight this time around, he does still summon Gladius, and they can still be thrown at him for a good bit of damage.
- In God of War, some Mooks can be thrown to other Mooks For Massive Damage when you use your Grapple Move against them, Kratos will automatically aim at the closest other Mook in front of him, with the "targeting reticule" being a Pillar of Light.
- No More Heroes' Bad Girl had an attack sequence where she'd launch gimps at you with her baseball bat (don't ask). Usually, it's easy enough to just avoid them, but with a well-timed sword swing, Travis could send them flying back at her.
- Solatorobo: The main gameplay mechanic is to damage enemies by hurling them into each other.
- The giant shade spawns mooks that are easily stunned and thrown back.
- When fighting the sacred bird boss, it will fly out of reach laying eggs, which can be thrown at it once it comes back down.
Beat Em Up
- The SNES version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time features a boss battle like this, against Shredder, at the end of the Technodrome level. Shredder sits safely in the cockpit of a crab cannon, where the turtles can't reach him. So they chuck his own soldiers at him, literally reducing them to cannon fodder.
- The Super Nintendo game The Ninja Warriors had the Final Boss in a crab cannon like the Turtles in Time Shredder Boss, except in the background rather than the foreground. The outer shell was impervious to attacks aside from mook tosses.
- Recettear features several bosses that end up having mooks as their main downfall.
- Frank West in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 can misdirect and toss Zombies that are attacking him to instead go after his opponent. Jill Valentine in her MvC2 incarnation also did this to a degree, but she primarily just dodged zombies coming her way rather than throw them.
- King Dedede in Super Smash Bros. Brawl can throw Waddle Dees as a projectile with his Side+Special, occasionally throwing a Waddle Doo, and more rarely throwing a highly-damaging Gordo. This was removed in the fourth game, where he exclusively throws Gordos.
- One of the items in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is a throwable Sackbot, which can then run through the stage latching onto enemies as a means of slowing them down.
- Very common in World of Warcraft. For example, Tortos, a giant turtle, uses a powerful breath attack every once in a while, which can only be interrupted by killing smaller turtles and then kicking their shells into the boss.
- Super Mario Bros. 2 has throwing things at enemies as a core mechanic. If you don't have vegetables, mushroom blocks or eggs, you can always employ mooks at other mooks.
- Various games of the Yoshi's Island series have bosses that do this, all of which can be eaten to make eggs, which in turn can hurt the boss.
- Super Mario 64 DS has only Yoshi as a playable character at the start. As such, he cannot punch enemies, but he can swallow them to stock up on eggs to throw. Both King Bob-omb and Goomboss could not be beaten if they did not have their respective mooks to fuel Yoshi for eggs. If anyone other than Yoshi fights Goomboss, the fight will be slightly different in that you have to punch Goombas into Goomboss in order to hurt him.
- Super Mario Galaxy and Super Mario Galaxy 2 features the Bouldergeist, a ghost that encases itself within stone. Normally it would be invincible to Mario's attacks. However, during the fight it will occasionally throw a black rock at Mario, which will become a Bomb Boo, which in turn Mario can use against the Bouldergeist to break apart his stone casing. When it reaches its vulnerable phase, guess what it still intentionally spawns?
- Super Mario World: The only way to hurt Bowser is to kick the Mecha Koopas he sends out up so they land on his head. Furthermore, you can pick up and throw Goombas, Mechakoopas, Buzzy Beetles and Koopa Troopa shells at any other regular Mook to kill them.
- Wario World: The Angler Mangler miniboss is completely invulnerable save for its lure, which dangles out of reach. The trick is to wait for it to summon a Barrel Buster mook, stun it, and do a Spinning Piledriver under the lure, which sends it flying up, hitting the lure.
- For obvious reasons, the Kirby games frequently feature bosses that spawn mooks for the player to hurl back at them using Kirby's default powers, most notably Kracko. Some of the games where Kirby steals enemies' abilities use a variant in which some bosses that spawn enemies with especially suitable powers. However, there are plenty of subversions featuring bosses who spawn mooks that give the player useless powers like Sleep or powers that are utterly ineffective in that particular battle.
- Kirby's bread and butter abilities include inhaling an enemy and spitting it to another (when he doesn't copy that enemy).
- In Mega Man 7's Wily Stages, one method for defeating the turtle tank boss involves using the Danger Wrap weapon to bounce its mini-turtle mooks into is beak For Massive Damage. However, most players find it more practical to defeat the boss more conventionally.
- Mega Man ZX Advent: A partial example - Hedgeshock can summon robot mouse flunkies. He can normally be hurt by anything, but there's an achievement for using nothing but the mouse flunkies to hurt her - by knocking them at her with the right powerup.
- The fan game Mushroom Kingdom Fusion occasionally offers variants of its source games' bosses who veer into this, such as a version of Mouser who tosses Bob-omb enemies or a variant of King Totomesu with lots of hit points and an unusual vulnerability to the exploding Koopa variants that spawn endlessly during the battle.
- In the Darkwing Duck NES game, Moliarity will always leap to a different tier of the arena to prevent the player from shooting him. However, if the player to disable his flamethrower tower enemies, the usually evasive Moliarity will arrive to fix the device, giving the player an opportunity to take potshots at him for as long as the repairs take.
- Mischief Makers: Your only attack is throwing. A bit different in that instead of throwing mooks at the boss... You just chuck the boss, the boss's weapons, it's projectiles or it's own FISTS at it . The Climax Boss has you throw nice phrases at it for some reason. You have to find the right ones, shake em to turn em nice, and chuck it.
Stealth Based Game
- In Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions
- Puzzle mission 1 has you situated on a floating platform with several small "domino" platforms lined up in front and facing you, there are mooks on each platform. The objective is to throw a grenade to the frontmost Mook soldier in order to send hi flying backwards, hitting the soldier behind him and so on like dominoes. Failing to chain them correctly renders the mission Unwinnable and you have to restart.
- Puzzle mission 2 involves you having to play "domino" by pushing a Mook soldier off a VR ledge in order to kill the two Mooks below him who in turn fall onto another pair of mooks and so on until they're all dead. Note that failing to chain the domino effect makes the mission Unwinnable and you have to restart.
- subverted in Destroy The Godmodder. Usually this kind of thing works on the godmodder at least once. It's still useful, but not in the way you'd expect. If there's a tough enemy that just won't take damage, throw him at the godmodder and he takes tons of damage.