Zero-Effort Boss

aka: Joke Boss
There were sequences really near the beginning that kicked my ass until I was wearing my buttocks like a hat while the closest thing to a final boss fight is basically you versus a wheelchair bound cross-eyed hobbit and you’re armed with the BFG 9000.
Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw, on Halo 3.

A boss that is about as threatening as the crates you destroy for ammo. Best case scenario, you actively have to try in order to lose. At its worst, you are incapable of losing even if you try.

The most common version is The Man Behind the Curtain variety. You have slaughtered the Big Bad's Mooks, infiltrated his Evil Tower of Ominousness, battled through his Elite Guard, and barely survived the fight against his Dragon. All that's left is the weak, unarmed, defenseless mastermind behind it all. A subversion of Authority Equals Asskicking, usually The Dragon was intended to be the real Final Boss, and this one-shot kill is meant to provide closure to the story. Or maybe it's just Played for Laughs that the Dark Lord Bludentiers is a fat slob who can barely lift a sword. Sometimes, there is an actual battle, but it's effectively won on the penultimate hit, requiring the player to finish off a vastly weakened enemy.

A less common variety is that for some reason, perhaps Eleventh Hour Superpower, you are invincible for the final battle. This invincibility may not be obvious at first, since you still suffer damage and get attacked, and only reveal itself when you lose all health. Either way, it is impossible to lose.

Compare Breather Boss and Anti-Climax Boss. Not to be confused with a Cutscene Boss, which is not only zero-effort, but zero-interactivity. It doesn't count if you spent 10 hours Level Grinding to kill the boss in one hit, that's not zero-effort. Compare Clipped Wing Angel.

Contrast Hopeless Boss Fight, which relates to boss battles you cannot win for the sake of the plot.


  • Cannon Fodder 2 features what may be one of the earliest examples; after blasting your way through dozens of nigh-on-impossible battles, your last mission is to assassinate a general. Your squad appears on a tiny map, positioned practically right next to him. He's unarmed. You're not. Bang. According to Stoo Campbell's Web site, this was meant to represent a firing squad.
  • When you encounter Mysterio in a store in Spider-Man 2, the intense battle music begins, his life bar, which is much, much bigger than any of the games other boss', appears on-screen, and it appears that you're in for one hell of a fight... until you realize that his only "attack" is yelling increasingly desperate (and ultimately, ineffectual) threats at you, and that his whole life bar is completely drained with a single punch. It's obviously a joke, and fits with the character's status as a Master of Illusion. It also embodies his Villain Decay, since when he first popped up, he was attacking the city with robot drones and attempting to steal the Statue of Liberty, but when you run into him for the final battle, he's holding up a convenience store.
  • Operation C ends its final stage with a combat cyborg, followed by a hallway with a trio of timed deathtraps, leading up to... an alien cell in a giant jar. You can still die, there's a bottomless pit in front of you, but the cell itself has no form of defense.
  • Gungrave, after beating the last boss you are left only with the game's Big Bad... who just stands there and lets you shoot him. It'd be a cutscene boss except the game does force you to press x to kill him, and if you refuse to press anything then you just stand there with your gun trained on him forever.
  • In Bloody Wolf, there is a boss who only fights with a knife. The first time you fight him, you are also restricted to using your knife for non-specified reasons, making him a possible threat. The second time, you can use your gun, which kills him with one hit.
  • In killer7, the battle against the Handsome Men is predetermined; the Smiths will always win 4 - 3, though there is considerable symbolism and foreshadowing in the fight. For example: Harman is a Decoy Protagonist to Garcian, much like how Handsome Red, Harman's opponent, is one to Handsome Pink, Garcian's opponent.
    • The Final Boss, Greg Nightmare, is the type that's very, very hard to lose to provided you can figure out that Garcian can pick up the Golden Gun. The Post Final Bosses, Emir Parkreiner and the Last Shot Smile, cannot be lost to.
  • A staple of the Assassin's Creed games as the bosses are just regular humans and thusly vulnerable to getting a blade shoved into their neck, not more or less than every other person. There are still some targets that you could call a boss fight, but those are mostly people that know how to block your attacks. Justified in that it is about assassinations and in most encounters you are supposed to get them when they don´t expect it.
    • The straightest example would be in Assassins Creed III where in the present Daniel Cross suffers a sequence of the bleeding effect meaning that he runs around in a big room like a lunatic and you can just wait on the spot you are standing until he comes around. Vidic is even more extreme, as he is killed in what is essentially a cutscene where you have to press X once.

Action Adventure
  • The final bosses in Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver 2 would normally be pretty challenging, if not for the bit where you're, y'know, impossible to kill...
  • Metroid: Other M has MB, the cybernetic reincarnation of Mother Brain, who is incredibly easy to beat despite being built up to be quite threatening. Some players kill her by accident.
    • That said, some other players won't notice her at all and be slowly hacked to death by the at-this-point-invincible Desbrachians that you are desperately fending off.
  • Zeke in the Evil ending of inFAMOUS 2. It's justified as he understands that he is just a regular human, and is even considerably weakened by a terminal disease to boot, and stands no chance against the super-powered Cole, but believes that he still has to try to prevent Cole from destroying the RFI and killing all non-Conduits. It's more a Last Stand than anything.
  • James Bond 007 for the Game Boy has this. One mid-game boss is a big, burly man that the game has hyped up as being a major threat. However, he's actually a wimp; he gives up after one hit from any weapon and starts crying.
  • At the end of the first chapter of Alice: Madness Returns, you face the Dormouse and March Hare, who are driving a giant robot. Dramatic music begins to play, the robot begins to prepare its attack... then a giant teapot falls from the ceiling and kills them both. Word of God states that while a boss fight was originally planned to be implemented, the developers lacked the time to properly implement it and as such the two were disposed of in a cutscene.
  • In the Adventure Time video game, there's Bliblob, the Cutest Warrior (one of the Cute King's lackeys from the episode "Conquest of Cuteness"). He is destroyed in one hit.
  • Batman: Arkham Origins has The Electrocutioner, who talks up a big game and is armed with shock gauntlets but is immediately floored by a single kick from Batman.
  • The various encounters with Captain Hayashi in Jet Set Radio Future are like this. He sports a very large health bar and is usually accompanied by several members of the Rokakku Police, but he's a terrible shot, and the shots he does land don't do a lot of damage. On top of that, he's defeated like every other mook in the game; by knocking him over and tagging him. There's even a point where you can knock him over off a building and instantly win!
  • Armogohma's a pretty easy boss to begin with in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, with her only offense being a laser that does not-too-great damage and spawning a bunch of weak spiders. Then when you finally kill her, you have to face her terrifying second form... her eye falling out and turning into a little spider that dies in one hit from a sword. It's mostly worth it for the look on Link's face.
  • Both Mom and Mom's Heart in The Binding of Isaac become this if you enter the fight with a fully-charged Bible, as both are a One-Hit Kill against her (don't even think about using it against any of the True Final Bosses beyond that, though.)

Beat 'em Up
  • The so-called "final boss" in The Incredible Hulk for the Super NES and Genesis/Mega Drive is the Leader, one of the Hulk's deadliest foes in the comics, thanks to his tremendous intellect... but in the game, all he does is stand in one place and laugh, and one punch is enough to defeat him, sending him tumbling down a Bottomless Pit. You have to uppercut him though, he laughs at standing punches for some reason.
    • See it here.
    • Even funnier, you can transform back into Bruce Banner in this game by taking a pill. His shotgun kills the leader in one hit.
  • Having slashed your way through Bangler's entire military in The Ninja Warriors, you corner Bangler himself in a dead end in the capitol building. He cowers, hyperventilating, against the wall, and takes a single unopposed slash to kill. However, you do have to walk across the entire width of the screen to do this, as for some reason he's completely immune to your shurikens.
    • If you take too long to kill him, he will take out a gun to shoot you. But you have to be trying in order for him to do so.
  • Obscure ZX Spectrum game Oriental Hero is so impossibly difficult that the only way to even reach the final boss is cheating. The final boss himself on the other hand… well, look for yourself.

Fighting Game
  • The Shainto clan in Bushido Blade 2 face an insanely difficult boss battle, but after this enemy is finally killed, the player learns that he was merely The Dragon and the true leader of the Narukagami is... an unarmed young woman kneeling in the next room. She patiently awaits her death, but the player can choose to spare her if so inclined.
  • The final form of Master Core in Super Smash Bros. for the 3DS is just a glowing sphere. It never attacks and moves only to re-position itself at the center of the stage. The only way to lose here is to accidentally (or intentionally) walk off the ledge and fall past the stage boundaries. It does have a One-Hit Kill move that it uses if left idle for too long, but you won't ever see it unless you're trying to (and it dies immediately afterwards anyway).

First-Person Shooter
  • In FEAR, you spend the entire game trying to find Paxton Fettel. You eventually come across him kneeling in a small cell. He starts babbling madly, but one pistol shot to the head takes care of him and his psychically-controlled clone soldiers.
  • Marathon has you fighting through an entire alien army to find and kill the alien general. But when you find him he turns out to be a deskbound pushover, with no weapons and no attacks.
  • Near the end of No One Lives Forever, the player finally comes face to face with Baroness Dumas (basically the Big Bad, though there is another Boss Battle after her). She has no weapon, doesn't move, and is defeated with a couple of shots from the pistol. Of course at the this point she begins to explode (um... don't ask), leading onto the real point of the level which begins with you encountering her, which is to get everyone away from the area before she blows up.
  • Borderlands 2:
    • Face McShooty needs your help. Shoot him in the face. Even better than a boss, since this counts as a side-quest, meaning you get an experience-point reward. And an achievement if you're playing on Steam or the Xbox. Many people don't kill him immediately because Face McShooty's insane ranting (about you shooting him in the face, of course) is one of the funniest moments in the game!
    • Sir Hammerlock's Big Game Hunt has Professor Nakayama, who more or less defeats himself when he trips and falls down a flight of stairs after coming out to confront you.
    • Tiny Tina's Assault on Dragon Keep has Prince Jeffrey, who immediately surrenders in a single hit. You can then proceed to slap him some more just to hear him whine some more (at least until Tina runs out of dialog for him).
  • Halo 3 provides the page quote (as of 9/2014) but Halo 4 is worse. The final enemy is beaten through Press X to Not Die; the final "battle" isn't easy so much as actually, literally not there at all.
  • This is the final boss of Goldeneye on the ds in a nutshell. The only thing you have to do to kill the final boss in the game is simply shoot him. You don't even have to aim down your sights.

Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game

Platform Game
  • After you fight the Vizier's magical duplicates in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, the actual Vizier takes only two hits to defeat. One to knock him out a window, then one to finish him after he somehow gets back up and ineffectually threatens you and Farah.
  • Dracula's final form in I Wanna Be the Guy. It's a Waddle Doo incapable of doing any damage, in a game where just about everything does damage to your One-Hit-Point Wonder.
  • In You Have to Burn the Rope, the protagonist has unlimited health, and the only boss (the only enemy, actually) dies after a single hit from a falling chandelier. You don't even have to time the chandelier-drop correctly; the boss will always walk right under it when it starts to fall.
  • In Ristar, Adahan, the boss of Planet Scorch spends most of the fight at roughly the ideal difficulty. After you've landed the penultimate blow however, the robot mole explodes, and you see it's damaged remains fall from up high. Followed by the pilot, who now tries to continue the fight despite being completely harmless without his armoured suit. He starts crying the next time you hit him.
  • Bob the Goldfish from the first Earthworm Jim. You reach him at the end of a grueling Shark Tunnel maze and an insane bathysphere race against time. He floats in his bowl, sneering at you. Any attack, or just touching him, will knock his bowl off the pedestal, leaving him to flop around.
    • In the sequel, Jim will simply eat Bob when you finish the stage.
  • Mega Man Zero 3. After defeating the final boss in his three forms a cutscene follows, paralyzes him, and you get to land the final blow with the saber.
  • Adeline in Kirby 64 The Crystal Shards is a sort-of example. As a miniboss, the monsters she summons through her paintings are actually pretty challenging. However, when Adeline finally attacks you herself, any single kind of attack will defeat her. Even just running into her.
    • Before her, Ado from Kirby's Dreamland 3 ends the fight in the same way.
    • One of the bosses in Kirby Super Star's Arena is a Waddle Dee. Though it does have more HP than the average Dee, it just stands there and doesn't even try to attack you with Collision Damage.
      • In Kirby Super Star Ultra it now wears a blue bandana like the Waddle Dee in the Megaton Punch minigame, and it can actually walk (slowly) and jump. It's still very easy, however. It also shows up late in the new sub-game "Revenge of the King" as well.
  • The Brain in a Jar from Space Station Silicon Valley. It's a brain in a jar. It just sits there. You're a killer robot with Eye Beams. The only way you can lose the match is if your console were to short-circuit at some point during the three seconds it takes to fry it.
  • The final boss of Bunny Must Die! Chelsea and the 7 Devils in Chelsea's storyline. After a Hopeless Boss Fight against a gigantic Dechronos, Bunny comes to Chelsea's rescue. Not only is she far stronger than she was in her own storyline, she automatically Guard Blocks all of his attacks, negating all damage he deals.
  • Dynamite Headdy has a fairly difficult boss midway through the game called Baby Face, which is a giant head on a pole that shifts through the various stages of life as you progress through the battle. Most of the stages also have a hand on a pole doing various things to try to kill you or screw you up. When you finally reach the Old Man, the final stage, the only attack is a withered hand that constantly shoots up and tries to grab you. If you successfully avoid it and blast away the last mask, you get a bonus point. However, if the hand grabs you, the boss laughs evilly...then promptly dies of old age.
  • In Rayman 2, one would expect Umber, one of the four Guardians (in this case, of the Sanctuary of Stone and Fire), to put up a fight. Instead, he simply waits for Rayman to take up residence on his head and then walks along the lava corridor and eventually is submerged completely, but not before enabling Rayman to jump off onto the platform bearing the mask Umber is supposed to protect. Umber explains this in Revolution: Ly contacted Umber, telling him about Rayman and his efforts to defeat Razorbeard. He knew Rayman was the chosen one without a doubt, and willingly gave him passage to the mask, where Rayman then met Razorbeard's robot pirates waiting to ambush him.
  • An early boss in Monster Party is simply a corpse that apologizes for being dead. There is also a later boss fight against a pair of zombies that can be defeated by just watching them dance, as they tell you to.
  • Yoshi's Story features Cloud n' Candy, the boss of Page 3's level 1. She's incredibly slow at first, and you only have to gradually eat her up to win, but eating her heals your character, and the only thing resembling effort in the entire fight is that she does move a little quickly once she becomes very small, but you still have to work hard to lose to her, as she just jumps around and never focuses on attacking you.
  • Puzzle Man in Megaman 5: Indonesian Artifact. Sure he flips the gravity around, but he just stands there. He is immune to the Mega Buster, though.
  • Tinker Knight in Shovel Knight is the smallest member of the Order of No Quarter, and also the easiest to defeat, as he simply runs back and forth tossing wrenches at you. However, things get quite a bit harder after you defeat him and he summons his Tinker Tank...

Puzzle Game
  • A Stable Time Loop in Bookworm Adventures 2 sets this up in one chapter: In an earlier chapter, Lex encountered what he assumed was an Evil Counterpart of himself who made off with his Magic Pen. When he acquires a time helmet, he decides to travel back in time to this chapter to stop his evil counterpart from stealing the Magic Pen only to discover after a series of tough literary opponents that the "boss" is his previous self who only has 4 hearts and goes down with one blow. Turns out that "EviLex" was actually the future Lex!

  • Portal 2 has a fight with GLaDOS that is honestly just a simple puzzle where you can't die, with comments by Wheatley and GLaDOS. Naturally, this is just the Disc One Final Boss.

Racing Game

Rail Shooter
  • The Control Centers in Galaxy Force II have the combat capacity of a piece of debris. Yes, even the final Control Center.

Real-Time Strategy
  • In Pikmin 2, the Eldritch Abomination Waterwraith is a hard fight at first, but then halfway through the fight he becomes incapable of harming you at all. You still have to chase him around and attack him, and he can run away, but you can't lose after that point.

Role-Playing Game
  • Final Fantasy X has Yu Yevon, the Post Final Boss of the game and the biggest single threat in the world... except all he does is heal himself and use percentage-based attacks (he only uses Ultima when low on health), so it's very unlikely he'll cause enough damage to kill you, and even if he did, everyone in the battle has permanent Auto-Life so they spring right back to life as soon as they get knocked out. The only way you could possibly lose is by deliberately casting petrification spells on all your characters. Hell, you can even Zombify the boss, and watch as he slowly whittles his own health away with healing magic.
  • In Final Fantasy VII, after the epic One-Winged Angel battle against Safer Sephiroth, (with kickass music) there's one more fight against him in the Lifestream. He is impossible to lose against — the only attack you can do is the Limit Break Omnislash, which kills him in one hit, he can't do enough damage to kill you because his attack is percentage-based, and if you do wait for him to attack, you automatically (whether or not you had the materia equipped) counter with a normal attack which also kills him in one hit.
  • Dramatic example in Final Fantasy V, where all but one of your party members is incapacitated, requiring the one to take on Exdeath solo. Despite laying into him with everything he's got, doing enough damage to kill him several times over, Galuf remains standing through sheer force of will. It isn't until Exdeath is defeated that Galuf finally allows himself to die.
    • Another example: Famed Mimic Gogo. In the sunken tower of Walse, you can find him at the bottom of the tower. How do you defeat him? Stare at him. Do absolutely nothing, and you'll win. Now, say, what happens if you attack him? He'll counter with attacks that deal 9,999 points of damage, then, if you get him down to a certain point, he'll cast Meteor three times, killing everyone, unless one is using cheats. It is possible to win by killing him before he gets off the three Meteors, though.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, fake Siegfried on the Phantom Train opens the battle with a flurry of hits, all of which are pathetic, and has such low health he'll die in one hit to anything. If you're using the Black Belt accessory, or even if you still have Shadow and his dog Interceptor decides to, y'know, intercept, he'll probably die before he finishes his initial attack combo. The battle against Siegfried in the Colosseum later on? Not so easy.
  • The Post Final Boss of Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean offers no resistance whatsoever. Despite having a mountain of HP, his attacks are weaker than most of the mooks you've been facing for the past hour. Granted, having the Disc One Final Boss' head suddenly rise from the earth and challenge the party to a battle was the last thing any sane player expected at that point, and it does provide for an interesting bit of story near the end.
  • In Xenosaga II, the very last boss fight of the game is against Albedo, who sets himself up as being godlike and goes on and on about how powerful he is, but it is actually IMPOSSIBLE to lose the battle. Albedo will even heal you if you use skills that deplete your own HP too far. Albedo throws the battle because he wants Jr. to kill him.
  • The Golem Boss from Chrono Trigger isn't the final boss, but it has plenty of buildup: after you fight the Heads I Win, Tails You Lose battle against the Golem and defeat That One Boss, the Golem Twins, the game pits you against the Golem Boss in a battle atop an airship. Unfortunately for the Golem Boss, it's too afraid of heights to attack.
    • Some effort is involved in killing the boss before it automatically flees after a set amount of time, however. You can't lose, but you can be denied some juicy XP.
    • Ozzie is also a pitiful excuse for a boss the two times you battle him. His entire strategy is to hide behind a barrier and surround himself with switches that open trap doors (including, bizarrely enough, one that opens under him). If you choose to attack Ozzie directly, he'll counter with an attack that does very little damage; even less in New Game+. The only possible way to lose against him is to continue attacking him directly without ever bothering to heal yourself; do enough damage to him, and you're essentially forced to attack one of the switches.
  • Augst from Wild ARMs 4 injects himself with cells that make him super powerful. Unfortunately all he does is become a giant super powerful traffic barrier with a speed stat of 0. He will never get to act, unless you somehow give him a speed boost, in which case, he just skips his turns.
    • The second battle isn't much better, but at least he counters.
  • In the first two games of the Mario & Luigi series, it is impossible to lose to the introductory tutorial boss.
  • While not technically a boss, the Apprentice from Super Mario RPG should count, since you can't run away from him once he challenges you and will probably go down in one or two hits, and the only way you can possibly lose is if you do nothing but defend and try to run away while he whittles away your HP with Scratch Damage. If you do lose, he will actually be hired as Snifit 4 and appear in Booster Tower, though you don't get anything for it.
    • If you do lose to this Snifit, another will appear in his place. You can actually do this up to five times, and upon losing the fifth time, if you return to Booster Tower, instead of meeting Snifit 8, you'll just find the normal Apprentice sulking in the corner.
      APPRENTICE: Shriek! The boss only wants 7 Snifits! All my training was in vain! What a rip!
  • Paper Mario:
    • Tubba Blubba, an invincible boss with high attack power and immunity to everything. You have to discover his secret and defeat his dragon to make him lose his immunity. Then, turns out he has very low HP, and can be defeated in one single turn. Although you did just beat his heart, a much tougher fight.
    • Monstar. This ghostly creature looks dangerous, but it only has 20 HP and a single attack that does 1 damage. His defense power is 1 (in a game where 0 is possible), which is the only reason you'd have any trouble with him at all early in the game... and he's fought very late in the game. He's even easier if you have the Defend Plus badge equipped (which you should), which reduces all damage by 1 (making you completely immune to Monstar's attack).
    • Peach and Twink's battle against Kammy Koopa in the final dungeon. While you technically control both characters, they only have one action each, making the fight impossible to lose.
  • Fable II has this. You've spent the entire game foiling Lucien's plans, he's kidnapped the people that were supposed to give you the power to beat him, he's SHOT YOUR DOG and, if you got married and had a kid, KILLED YOUR FAMILY. You can shoot and kill him in one shot while he does his evil monologue. Either that, or Reaver does it for you. Granted, you're given a MacGuffin that renders him powerless beforehand. Some consider this a form of poetic justice.
  • Negative Man from Mother 3. He mostly just cries and mopes while you assault him. He can attack, but it's extremely weak and he attacks so rarely that players may never see him attack at all.
    • Also the story telling robots in Saturn Valley. They actually cannot attack.
  • In Albion, the final boss has the maximum number of hit points allowed by the game engine (which is WAY more than what any other character or enemy in the game has), and is also impervious to physical attacks and 90% resistant to magical ones. His attack also kills pretty much any character in 1 hit. Why is he is a Zero Effort Boss? Because you automatically win the fight after he kills 2 of your party members.
  • The first boss of Secret of Mana is this, as Jema will revive you each time you die until you win. Which is a good thing, because you're probably going to die at least three times over before you can finally kill the bastard.
    • The rematch against three Biting Lizards. They're a boss from really, really early in the game rematched really, really late in the game, and Villain Forgot to Level Grind. Even having three of them doesn't make them a huge threat (except for the threat of a Nonstandard Game Over if all three characters are eaten simultaneously, but you probably won't see unless you really screw up or are deliberately trying to do it).
  • Mega Man Star Force 3. After defeating the final boss, a cutscene follows, showing Mega Man's final form (The one shown on the game box), unlocked. After that, you refight the final boss, who now has an astonishing 8000 HP. This may be daunting, but his attacks can not kill you, even at 1 HP, and the battle doesn't end until you land the final move. (Also dependent on the game's version)
  • The Starman Junior in EarthBound might have been a pretty tough opponent on his own, given he has enough hit points to last him a while and attacks. However, you have a computer-controlled Buzz Buzz with you for the battle, and the bot will always have him put up a shield that absorbs all damage, and to replace it when it runs out. The only possible way to lose is to spend hours leveling up in the starting area until you get the physical shield spell that will override the magic shield Buzz Buzz uses.
  • Sol in Final Fantasy Legend 3 just stands there and says "Kill me" so he'll take Xagor down with him. (Suicide by Cop) However, the True Final Boss comes right after that fight; so it's perfect to put on some buffs.
  • The Floor 99 Boss of the Ancient Cave in Lufia II: Rise of the Sinistrals is impossible to lose to. He spends 2 rounds healing you, idles for one round, and then kills himself. The trick is to deal 10k HP damage before he kills himself or kill off your own party, if you want his key. Of course, few would know either of those, due to the Nintendo Hard nature of the Ancient Cave....
  • The Gray Prince in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, who is your last adversary in the Arena, can easily become this... but only after you do a Side Quest that reveals his true origins (he's the son of a vampire). Upon learning of it, he decides that he doesn't want to live anymore and asks you to kill him.
  • The True Final Boss of Persona 3 cannot be lost to, even though it deals 9999 damage attacks every round (your health caps at 999) eventually, you just start blocking the attacks, and then on the last round every command is greyed out except the one skill that will finish the fight.
    • The same applies for Persona 4. Izanami on her last phase attempts to hit you with an attack that causes 999 damage, but you survive each attack, until the "Myriad Truths" skill becomes available, allowing you to defeat her at last.
  • A lot of the bosses in Valkyrie Profile turn into this thanks to Weapon of X-Slaying type equipment that kills anything in its category in one shot, and which you can just find in a normal playthrough, without going very much out of your way, if at all. The first of these you get is Dragon Slayer, then Beast Slayer, and half the game's dungeons culminate in a boss that fits into one of those two categories. Same goes for weapons with "[Element]+DEATH" in its description. In the A ending, one of the final three bosses is susceptible to this because of a weakness to fire.
  • Fallout 3:
    • You can take down President John Henry Eden using a single relatively low-level speech check, upon which he will kill himself and blow up his own base. It's so easy most people don't expect that saying it would actually defeat the President.
    • The actual 'final boss' of the game, Colonel Autumn, is a normal human wearing a trench coat and armed only with a laser pistol, whereas your character is a death machine with Powered Armor and several high level guns. He can be easily killed with one headshot from any high level weapon. Even if you do nothing, Fawkes or Sarah will kill him anyway, so it's pretty much impossible to actually lose to him.
      • By this stage of the game you are highly likely to have maxed out several stats and skills means that you can also normally talk this character into leaving with a couple of speech checks, meaning that before you can start your one sided curb stomp, you have to go out of your way to insult him first.
    • When you finally confront Professor Calvert at the end of Point Lookout, he's a Brain in a Jar with no attacks and no way of defending himself aside from a few defective Protectrons. If your character has survived the swampfolk, ghoul reavers, and tribals that populate Point Lookout, you'd have to be trying to fail this. If you don't do anything and just stand there, Desmond will kill him for you.
    • The Alien Captain from Mothership Zeta literally dies in one shot from any of the dozens of alien guns you've picked up throughout the course of the DLC. Or, like Autumn, you can just sit there and let a companion kill him.
  • Bowser Jr. in your first encounter in Paper Mario: Sticker Star is this. Sure he'll regenerate after being jumped on, but you NEED to use the Scissors Sticker you automatically get before the fight, which defeats him in one hit.
  • Evil Islands: The Curse can kill you easily, but it's focused on Tka-Rik who does all the fighting for you. All you need to do is to weaken it and watch the incoming ownage.
  • Dragon's Dogma has you eventually fight Duke Edmun, former Arisen. Except at this point he's about 90 years old, feeling every day of it, and can barely lift his sword. He COULD kill you if you stood still for about two hours and let him, but more players are inclined to hit the little weasel with their most ludicrously overpowered attack.
  • Shin Megami Tensei IV on the "Nothingness" route has the Yamato Perpetual Reactor. Burroughs scans it for defense mechanisms, only to find that it has no defenses; indeed, all it does every turn is "No Reaction".

Shoot 'em Up
  • Almost every final boss in the Gradius series is the Bacterian emperor, who usually takes the form of a large brain and either fires easily-avoidable attacks or just sits there and does nothing, giving the player a chance to take him down. On the other hand, given that it's in control of the space station you just cruised through, maybe the whole level counts as the final boss.
    • Special mention goes to Gradius III, in which the Bacterian emperor mutters some incomprehensible curse, starts vomiting really slow purple energy balls in a gentle curve, and spontaneously explodes fifteen seconds later (or sooner, if you fire at him). At least he actually fights back, which is something of an accomplishment considering the last two final bosses of Gradius didn't even do that. In the arcade version, getting hit by its attacks doesn't kill you, but instead teleports you to a Nostalgia Level based on either Gradius 1 or Salamander. Finishing it or dying in it takes you to the last checkpoint before the final boss.
    • Another special mentions goes to Gradius Rebirth, in which the final boss sics a large group of Option Hunters on you to defend itself while taunting you. While annoying in that they steal your Options, they can't actually destroy you.
    • The final boss of Salamander 2, Doom, is an exception. A major one. Venom in Nemesis II is an exception too.
  • The Final Boss of Space Invaders Infinity Gene is a lone invader which you fight in old-school arcade style. It's still possible to get killed (but you have infinite lives in that sequence), and it's also possible for the invader to reach the bottom of the screen. Whether you beat it or not, the game is still completed.
  • The Final Boss of R-Type 3 is no pushover, being fought in a Negative Space Wedgie. However, after (seemingly) killing that boss and returning to normal space, it will hold the Negative Space Wedgie open, ostensibly to come after you. However, its attacks are stupidly easy to dodge after the boss fight you just went through, and you can (must) kill it in one hit by smashing its face with your Force Device.
  • Mambu, the super secret final boss of Sonic Wings 2. It only goes from one side of the screen to the other, then you automatically see the ending (which is a special one if you have faced him).

Simulation Game
  • Terminal Velocity, World 3 boss. When you destroy the large building, a large turret is deployed in its place. The turret faces directly at you, and shoots from the cannons on the side of the turret. As such, it takes more effort to fly into one of the projectiles than to try a head-on attack. You are also more likely to be killed by other mooks.

Stealth-Based Game
  • Tenchu has a few bosses that follow this. In the original Tenchu: Stealth Assassins, the boss of the first level is an old merchant who goes down in one or two hits. It IS possible to lose to him if you're low on health and let him shoot you with a gun, but you have to be trying to lose. In Tenchu: Fatal Shadows, you have an early encounter with the Big Bad... who leaves while his lover volunteers to fight you. She is a defenseless Geisha girl with a small dagger who goes down in one hit. It may be impossible to actually lose unless your health is at the bare minimum and you let her attack.
  • Rarely played completely straight in Metal Gear, but bosses often have zero effort phases:
    • The Boss in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is a Mirror Boss and Final Exam Boss, and fighting her is a true test of skill. However, after defeating her, you have to finish her off yourself.
    • The Sorrow from the same game straddles the line between this and Hopeless Boss Fight. The "fight" is simply wading through a river. Whether you make it to the end or not doesn't matter in terms of story, since either way you have to take the revival pill. The only difference is that you get a bonus piece of camouflage for making it to the end.
    • Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker in what is likely a call back to the third game since the AI is based on The Boss, the final phase of the fight against the titular Peace Walker is simply you shooting the AI pod, which will not move or fire

Survival Horror
  • In the remake of Resident Evil, you have to deal with Neptune, a Zombie Great White Shark. Sound tough? It would be, except since you drained the shark tank, all it can do is feebly flop around.
    • Note that however if you screw around when he's splashing, chances are, you may climb down and get eaten.

Turn-Based Strategy
  • In Fantasy General (an old Panzer General spinoff) you fight dozens of battles across six continents to stop the Shadowlord and his vassals. Once you reach the fifth continent, the Shadowlord will cast spells at your troops each turn. However, when you finally reach the end of the campaign and storm his castle, he will get destroyed without a fight, being unable to stand against the pure goodness emanating from you.
  • "Yu-gi-oh" games have a few of these. In The Falsebound Kingdom, Emperor Heisheen, who is the established villain, is pathetic. After you cream him, it is revealed that he was just a figurehead for the real villain. Also, in Reshef of Destruction, Bandit Keith is also an intentionally anticlimactic fight. After stealing the all-powerful god cards, Keith challenges you to a duel. Keith pulls out all the stops to to get his god, The Winged Dragon of Ra, out only to find that it refuses to obey him. Ra will simply remain inert allowing you to beat Keith, who is totally at a loss when facing this setback.

Wide Open Sandbox
  • The final confrontation in The Saboteur with Nazi officer Kurt Dierker on the top of the Eiffel Tower. It is actually not as epic as it sounds but the atmosphere really sells how far Dierker has lost it. After a very uneventful elevator ride to the top of the tower all while surrounded by Nazis who have either been killed, have committed suicide, or are just out of their minds, you meet Dierker, who is drunk and depressed, not wearing any kind of armor, and, despite having a gun, does nothing to defend himself, and all you have to do to finish off him is firing a single shot. And that is not even required, because he will jump off the tower himself if you just stand around for long enough. Though this is more due to Dierker's Diminishing Villain Threat (as before this he pretty much killed every Nazi officer under his command due to paranoia). You can clearly tell he is pretty much over the edge already and in no shape to fight.
  • Billy Grey from Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned. Though the preceding level involves blasting your way into the prison to reach him, once you do, he is unarmed (as he's a prisoner) and you just shoot him down.
  • Parodied in the Saints Row IV DLC "Enter the Dominatrix", which is based on a DLC for Saints Row: The Third that eventually mutated into the fourth game. Zinyak (doing in-character commentary) complains about how the developers made him go down with one shot and a series of action commands in ETD.
    Zinyak: This was meant to be my shining moment! I mean, will you look at that health bar! Just... just... just insulting, agh! And now they want to draw it out with these ridiculous button prompts!

Alternative Title(s):

Joke Boss