Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000
"Disemboweler IV, the game where condemned criminals dig at each other with rusty hooks."
Fictional video games on TV tend to be disgusting, ultraviolent messes of blood, guts,
and severed limbs as the hypnotized player kills everything that moves, and more than a few things that don't
. Many games are
about killing everything, of course, but with some style.
Also, the names for these types of video games on TV tend to be rather unimaginative and generic with names such as "ACTION KILLTACULAR DEATHMOWER 5000
" or simply "The Decimator
", when in real life, they're often much shorter, punchier, sophisticated, and clever, like Half-Life
, Call of Duty
, and Battlefield
. Granted, some
ultraviolent Real Life
games are named like the trope, but not all. What little frequency there is
of such naming, will probably continue to decrease as 1) games try to become taken more seriously in general as a medium, and 2) controversy
over the more violent and realistic (or just close-to-home
) games continues to mount.
Often just used for name-dropping
as a gag. If such a game is shown, it can be an example of Pac Man Fever
(another case of producers not getting it) and/or bear a surprising resemblance
to a well-known game.
In a Crime and Punishment Series
, these can cause innocent victims to act out the events, possibly including An Aesop
about why video games are horrible
and teenagers should be watching responsible adults shoot each other on TV instead.
Sometimes the corruption comes not from the violent games, but from the very influence of computers themselves — from the Internet. This is because meddling executives
and Moral Guardians
and elsewhere, worrying about the time you spend away from your TV, want to convince you that New Media Are Evil
Also, possibly due to Mortal Kombat
, Grand Theft Auto
, and Manhunt
, virtually every example of this will be a Fighting Game
, a Grand Theft Auto
clone, or a ridiculously gory shooter of some irrational kind
. Occasionally it will be all three at once, with a subtitle declaring "It's For Everyone!
Not to be confused with Gory Deadly Overkill Title of Fatal Death
, although the name is an example of it. See also Murder Simulators
. Contrasts with Ultra Super Happy Cute Baby Fest Farmer 3000
, where the game is a really kiddy game.
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Anime & Manga
- Interestingly, Serial Experiments Lain did something like that. In one of the early chapters of the series, there are several teenagers stuck in an online shooter called Phantoma without even being logged on to their computers, and confusing random people with enemy NPCs as a result. One of them commits suicide, while the other one murders a little girl.
- This was obviously intentional, given how one of the main themes of the series was the ever-growing disconnect with reality that most Wired developed. It's not about the violence, it's more about the reality itself and its perception.
- And subverted in that the "real world" is not all that real either.
- Subverted in Paranoia Agent. The detectives are interviewing the suspect for the Shounen Bat assaults. The boy seems convinced that he is living in the world of an RPG he played, and all the people he assaulted were, to him, the enemies controlled by the Big Bad that needed to be cleansed with his magical, holy sword. In the end it turns out that the kid wasn't the real Shounen Bat, he was just an attention seeker.
- Mamimi from FLCL spends half the second episode playing Fire Starter, a handheld video game with the objective of "burn down a demon-infested city while dodging the cops". (She spends another quarter hanging out with Naota, and the last quarter starting fires). But being Mamimi, she's incredibly whacked anyway, so the game's probably not really to blame.
- Subverted in Pure Trance: some of the games that are mentioned are "Connect the Bowels" (kind of appropriate since most of the characters are nurses), "Throw The Baby Around", and "Real Fight", a fighting game that uses "ordinary things like scissors and razors as weapons (not for children)".
- Outlaw Star has an episode where Aisha is playing some kind of high-speed combat Dating Sim.
- A running gag in Minami-ke is a bad Soap Opera called Sensei and Ninomiya-Kun. The two youngest daughters own a copy of the show's video game which runs the gamut from fighter games to platforming to zombie survival horror (complete with co-op) leading to many deaths of Ninomiya-Kun.
- Scott McCloud explains his reason for writing the Affectionate Parody DESTROY!!: "I first heard people complaining about a Marvel comic called SuperBoxers and claiming that it was "nothing but senseless violence from beginning to end." I thought this sounded cool, but was disappointed, upon acquiring a copy, to discover that SuperBoxers included a plot, characterization, and other distractions. It wasn't PURE. DESTROY!! was my attempt to get it right."
- Although a gamer from the old generation, Lewis Trondheim suggested such videogames in his stories: Danger Trash III, Deathfighter III, Maximum Blood XVI or Excreminator.
- In Grandma's Boy, the video game in development is Eternal Death Slayer 3.
- In the Spike Lee film Inside Man, the leading bank robber sees one of the hostages, an African-American boy, playing a GTA-like game of plotless violence with racial overtones. He's not happy. It should also be noted that the graphics on the game are pretty good for a handheld device.
- Clockers has Gangster, which appears to be some kind of proto-GTA played via VR helmet and supposedly made by Sega.
- Mike Teevee's updated "sin" in Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is having a passion for violent video games, though the Oompa Loompas still sing about watching TV too much when Mike meets his fate.
- In the Robin Williams film Toys, the General Ripper antagonist sees children playing violent games at an arcade and has the bright idea to use the children to fight wars by remote control, in the style of Ender's Game.
General: (very heavily paraphrased) What happens when you hit the UN trucks?
Kid: You lose points.
General: That's ridiculous. (blows up every vehicle on screen, UN trucks included)
- Zabulon's prophetic video game in The Film of the Book of Night Watch is a pretty gory example, involving among other things people pulling out their own spines like katanas and hitting people with them.
- The Swedish So Bad, It's Good 1997 crime/detective movie Beck - Spår i mörker, a gang of teenagers who live in the underground tunnels beneath Stockholm run around armed with swords and knives and decapitate random people on subway platforms and trains at night. It's quickly revealed that they do it to get the most frags, and that they are inspired by the game Final Doom (the script writers probably did not know that a version of Doom actually existed by that name), and in the end the gang's underground hideout is raided by the police, and you clearly see the game Marathon on their computer screens.
- The mind control game central to the plot of Gamer is called Slayers.
- In Mars Attacks!, a bus driver catches her sons cutting school to play a shoot-em-up game, stops the bus, and hauls them in, yelling at them, whereupon the passengers (who are all middle-aged women) clap. Later, though, it turns out that playing those games taught them how to shoot and they mow down several alien invaders with their own laser guns.
- The video game Adam Sandler's character's kids play at the beginning of Grown Ups involves slaughtering people on a cruise ship with assault rifles and chainsaws and you get bonus points for pushing old ladies off the ship.
- Wreck-It Ralph features Hero's Duty, an Affectionate Parody of sci-fi shooters such as the Metroid, Mass Effect, Gears of War, and Halo series. When he escapes into the game from his own (an old-school Donkey Kongesque 8-bit arcade game), Ralph exclaims, "When did video games get so violent and scary?!"
- In Ride Along, Ben is a fan of an ultraviolent Modern Warfare clone whose online multiplayer is composed of players of varying degrees of maturity, with gamertags like Assface and Ballsdeep. Ben's own gamertag is BlackHammer. The fact that his knowledge of guns comes entirely from video games bites him in the ass when his girlfriend's cop brother James takes him to a shooting range as part of a police ride-along; it turns out that being a top-level FPS gamer does not mean that one knows how to fire a gun. Though his knowledge of the exotic military weaponry featured in the game does come in handy for tracking down Omar. Also, Assface warns Ben and James when he hears Omar's goons break into Ben's home over his Xbox Live headset.
- In Harry Potter, Dudley Dursley is fond of "blowing up aliens on his computer." He has a PlayStation game called Mega Mutilation Part Three. As a side note, he destroys his PlayStation in The Goblet of Fire, which is set in 1994, before it was even released anywhere (including Japan). J. K. Rowling admitted she didn't check her facts.
- Dave Barry's Money Secrets includes a passing reference to Death Killer of Fatal Murdering II: The Slaying.
- Dave Barry's column "Silent Night, Holy %*&?c" features a cartoon of a boy asking Santa for a "Nintendo Super Android Mario Mutant Amazon Slime Leech from Hell(TM)."
- In C Is For Lettuce:
Just look at this atrocity! There's hoodlums, thugs, and skanks / And chronic-tokin' gangstas running hookers down with tanks / There's nudity and blood and guts and chainsaws cutting people / And that's just in the new updated 3-D Tetris sequel!
- The comic strip FoxTrot likes this one, with things like "Doomathon 2000".
- The strip sometimes uses the names of real games— for example, Carmageddon, which is an actual game.
- Sometimes the names of Jason's games combine the names of two violent real games; in one series of strips, he was playing something called Duke Quakum, and in one strip, Paige complained that he was playing Primal Instinct. (Not because she thought it was too violent, but because he was hogging it, and she wanted to play.
- Not to mention "World of Warquest," and Jason's rather extreme addiction thereof. However, all of this could be an Affectionate Parody as Bill Amend, the creator, is quite the avid World of Warcraft player as well.
- It then brilliantly subverts it by introducing "Nice City", a game where the player just hangs out not killing anything at all. Literally. Peter has to reset after stepping on an ant.
NB: Those examples are when the Ultra Super Death Gore Fest Chainsawer 3000
is mentioned In-Universe
. Real ultraviolent videogames examples have been moved to "Truth In Television".
- One news report in Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines involves a "Senator Limperman" railing against violent video games such as Rape and Pillage and Abe Lincoln Teaches Killing. (He's also upset about a crude Take That directed at him in another unnamed game).
- Super Viking Shark Panch Corpse Ride Mega Extreme 9000 lampshades this trope by name, despite being of the rhythm genre. It involves punching sharks in the mouth while riding a corpse to the beat of music.
- Bladehunt: Deathspank 2: The Revenge. It was later defictionalized as DeathSpank .
- Inverted in the Grand Theft Auto series, of all things. Fictional video/arcade games advertised or available for play within some GTA games are far less menacing, crossing a wider spectrum of genres and may even pass as kid-friendly, though sexual jokes are aplenty and their presence is more for parody. Just to name some, there is Pogo the Monkey, Degenatron, eXorbeo, PastMaster, They Crawled from Uranus, Duality and Go Go Space Monkey, Vivisection's Lab Rat Cart-Racing, QUB3D, Civil Service, and Deity.
- That said, Grand Theft Auto V does have a parody of this sort of game with Righteous Slaughter 7, the Modern Warfare-meets-Postal FPS that Jimmy is seen playing in his room, which is packed with every stereotype about violent video games (and their fans) rolled into one. Weapons include syringes filled with VDs (which earn the player an "Infected!" bonus) and a literal shit on a stick, the player is able to literally rape his opponent's corpse after killing him, and never is less than a quarter of the screen painted red with blood. The game's website (viewable on the in-game internet) and advertisements take the parody further, making fun of the Cash Cow Franchise nature of the Call of Duty games. Jimmy himself hasn't been turned into a psychopath by it, though that's not to say that his actual behavior is any better.
In the same game, there are also advertisements on the radio for Pride Not Prejudice, a Deep South-themed FPS that (going by the ads) is utterly draped in neo-Confederate apologia, in a parody of the perceived right-wing tilt of many shooters. Unlike Righteous Slaughter 7, though, we don't get to see this game in action.
- Kagetsu Tohya has Bloody Royale 3 (or BR3 for short!), which seems to be Rival Schools with guns.
- Thanks to the metafictional narrative around BLOODCRUSHER II, the game is both a fictional example and an actual game!
- One Strong Bad Email throws a few gag titles up: Blood Bleeder, Head Chopper II, Scab Wars, and Blistergeist. There is the strong suggestion that these games would be really fun to play. It also pokes fun at the Moral Guardians' alternative, because Homestar can only play Clapping Party: no, it's not like DDR, it's just clapping... This is, of course, a one shot joke, and most of the games that Strong Bad plays and enjoys aren't evil whatsoever, varying between Sundae Drivin' and Thy Dungeonman, which is also a real game playable on the site.
- In another email, he mentions a preference for R-rated movies, apparently independent of factors such as "quality" and "not a waste of moneyosity". So it may not be a statement of the entertainment value of the games (except insofar as even E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial would be an improvement over what Homestar's allowed to play) so much as another one of those factors that blurs exactly how old these characters are (when's the last time you automatically equated violence with quality? Probably when you were eight).
- Played for Laughs in Freefall: Sam wants to use the ship's computer to play a game called Quake Nukem and the Heretics of Doom in Castle Wolfenstein 3D.
- Gunnerkrigg Court plays this one for laughs on this page, where Antimony's first (and judging by her horrified reaction, last) exposure to video games is one of the Grand Theft Auto titles. (Though Word of Tom clarifies that Annie did give video games another chance after that. She was impressed with Shadow of the Colossus, as was Renard.)
- In the Jack arc "Two for You", the character Evan mentions a game entitled "Killing Killers and the Killers Who Kill Them" (a play on the book title "Lying Liars and the Liars Who Tell Them").
- A User Friendly strip during the Hot Coffee scandal (where it was revealed you could hack GTA: San Andreas to unlock a minigame where you had consensual sex with a woman after a long courtship, outraging moral guardians somehow) listed a number of these games as healthy entertainment, then condemned a title named Boobies as morally corrupt.
- Occasionally mentioned in Kevin & Kell. However, this being a world that runs on Carnivore Confusion, the games are probably not that violent by their standards.
- The Simpsons
- The show has mentioned such games repeatedly and featured them at least twice in the early seasons, once with Super Slugfest, which might have been played straight, once with the hottest new beat-em-up Bonestorm, which really wasn't. Later addition: Death Kill City 3: Death Kill Stories. 3 guesses what it's based on.
- Also, "Disembowler IV: the game where condemned criminals dig at each other with rusty hooks."
- However, they do accidentally mention a real game...
- The Movie gives us Grand Theft Walrus. And hives. In an arcade cabinet.
- "Razorfight 2: The Slashening"
- An issue of the comic featured Bart sneaking out to get the new game, "Violent Stick-Men 3D".
- The Simpsons being what it is, even Rod and Todd's favorite game, "Billy Graham's Bible Blasters", is a ridiculously over-the-top FPS. "Second Coming! RELOAD! RELOAD!"
- In Daria (particularly the fanfics), the title heroine and her best friend love playing the video game 'Cannibal Fragfest'.
- Ben Tennyson, the titular hero of Ben 10 is so enamored of the video game "Sumo Slammers" that he has abused the Omnitrix to get at it and even in it.
- This trope wouldn't be complete without a mention of the "Vampire Piggy Hunter" series in Invader Zim.
- A particularly Anvilicious episode of Pepper Ann, "GI Janie", was about this. Pepper Ann's aunt was asked by someone to do a study on the dangers of video games, so she borrows Pepper Ann's system and plays it continuously for "research". As she plays the game (called War Monger) more and more (which looks like a simulation of the Vietnam War), she starts to think she is actually in the game, which looks like Vietnam veteran flashbacks. In the end she declares that videogames are dangerous because they blur the line between reality and fiction.
- King of the Hill
- The episode "Grand Theft Arlen" features Hank playing a GTA-esque game (probably a Game Mod of San Andreas) known as "Pro-Pain". ("Oh God, I just stabbed a parking attendant. Where's the button to turn yourself in?") It's actually based on his life, being made by a couple of college students to make fun of him. Sort of subverted in the Hank ends up enjoying (and even getting addicted to) the game when he finds out the benefit of the Wide Open Sandbox is that you can choose to do good deeds (like stopping robbers) rather than having to be a criminal himself. Also the game isn't a nation-wide hit but a local fad, only really popular around Rainey Street. (see Rule of Funny)
- Another episode has Bobby mention a video game called Face Kicker 3, but it's just a footnote to the main plot (a sensitive liberal turning the Boy Scouts Expy into a bunch of touchy-feely wimps). When the scoutmaster gets mad at Bobby for showing the game to his kids, Bobby muses "Making all these faces explode can't be good for me."
- Spoofed on Robot Chicken with Codename: The Abortionator (Seth Green originally wanted to call it Nun Raper). Highlights include: "Shoot your parents! Urinate on the homeless! Kick a puppy! Make sweet, sweet love to your hot cousin! Or your hot cousin's mentally disabled friend! Take out your aggression the old-fashioned way: with a motor vehicle! Extra points for family members!" "Rated T for 'teen'!" Strangely, the DVD commentary for the episode has Green state how he believes this trope is real and bemoans that there are hyper-gory games being marketed to young kids.
- The South Park episode "Towlie" introduced a Fighting Game named "Thirst for Blood" for the Okama GameSphere, in which Stan cuts off Carman's face and eats it, among other thing. It would later re-appear in the form of an arcade cabinet in several later episodes.
- ReBoot did a few of these when the series went Darker and Edgier. An Evil Dead game, a Mortal Kombat game, and Kron the Destroyer. Shooting zombies, a demon crushing heads, and Kron.
- One episode of The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron mentions a game Jimmy and his friends wanted to buy called Doom Bringer II but the cashier denied their purchase because the game was "for mature players only due to violence, exaggerated mayhem, and old lady kicking."
- One episode of Gasp featured Gasp attempting to beat Fred's high score on a video game called Death Race Mutant Zombie Exterminator XV.
- In Bojack Horseman, Todd's life was ruined due to his addiction to a video game series called "Decapathon". Once we see the game (specifically Decapathon VII) we see a Columns-esque puzzle game.
Truth In Television
- Death Race is considered the first controversial gore-fest game, as you drive around running over suspiciously human-looking "Gremlins".
- Mortal Kombat is infamous for its blood and fatalities which, combined with Night Trap, resulted in the creation of the ESRB.
- The Doom franchise isn't itself an example, but it's a common inspiration for this trope. The third entry in the series has a playful jab at the series' reputation, containing a very silly playable Mini-Game in an arcade machine called Super Turbo Turkey Puncher 3.
- The Brutal Doom mod brings the original series very close to this trope. There are other improvements, like tweaking enemy behavior, adding secondary fire and reloading to weapons, and generally making the game harder, but the main draw is the drastic increase in blood and gore and the addition of extremely messy fatalities.
- The Wii game MadWorld does its best to live up to this trope, being a pretty obvious commentary on games such as Manhunt and the western media's reaction to them.
- The Postal series built its reputation around this. 1 is a completely serious game and pretty disturbing, while 2 is a hilarious Black Comedy Wide Open Sandbox where you're free to murder everyone (or no one) you meet in a variety of gruesome ways.
- The Battletoads arcade game, when you think about it. The finishers are gorier, the end level score result is called "Korpse Kount" (probably a nod to Mortal Kombat), and there is a little more adult and dirty humor. The only reason this game probably passed the Moral Guardians' radar was because games like Doom and Mortal Kombat were taking all the heat during the '90s.
- Not exactly the same in Chaos;Head, but the Main Character is a classic example of the typical Chainsawer 3000 player in the press' eyes: delusional freak who sees everywhere only blood and gore or sexual scenes.
- Robot Unicorn Attack: Heavy Metal exists on the opposite end of the parody spectrum as its predecessor. There's not much in the gore department, but while the first game was an ultra-non threatening romp through a land of rainbows and butterflies, this one has the robot unicorn trying to escape from a Fire and Brimstone Hell with platforms made of skulls and the player collecting demons and smashing through giant pentagrams before exploding and leaving a severed robot unicorn head that cries tears of flaming blood. All while Blind Guardian plays in the background.
- Bloodlust Software revels in making games like this (having started as a backlash against anti-video game violence movements). The biggest offender is the Mortal Kombat clone Timeslaughter.
- Strata released a pair of infamous ultra-violent Mortal Kombat clones in their time: Time Killers and Blood Storm (the latter being the subject of the below-mentioned Bonestorm parody in The Simpsons).
- Hotline Miami intentionally invokes this in its fast-paced, gore-filled gameplay, only to brutally deconstruct it at every turn, adding a slower, dramatic scene before and after every level to highlight how twisted the main character's actions are, scenes that grow increasingly distorted by the so-called Hero's guilt-induced hallucinations.
- Carmageddon, where the point is basically to destroy other cars and run pedestrians over. When Moral Guardians objected, they added a mode that replaced all the pedestrians with zombies.
- The upcoming top-down shooter Hatred, in which you play as a mass murderer going on a rampage. It seems to be designed as a throwback to the "glory days" of games like this in the '90s, particularly Postal, while the logo for the game is done in a font very similar to that of Doom.