Shout Out / Dungeons of Dredmor
A good portion of the game's items, skills, and descriptions are direct nods to games, movies, and franchises of various media.
Anime / Manga
- The level-up screen says things like "Your princess is in another castle" (misquoting Super Mario Bros.), "It is dangerous to go alone! Take this" (The Legend of Zelda), "Power Level 1,370" (Dragon Ball Z), "Drinking from the Fire Hose", "Conan the Librarian" (UHF references, the latter a parody of Conan the Barbarian), and "The Blue Thunder of Furinkan High" (Kuno's self proclaimed moniker in Ranma ˝) just to name a few.
- Almost all of the game's Steam Achievements are shout-outs. See the wiki for details.
- To Super Mario Bros. (in the fungi, there's the Plumber's Agaric which provides a strength buff), and The Prince ("A regal mushroom better feared than loved.").
- If you try to shoplift, Brax's enforcer demons will tell you to Respect Mah Authoritahnote (South Park). If you talk to Brax without shoplifting, he'll tell you to "Buy something will ya?" (The Legend of Zelda)
- The Undead Aethernaut is based on the Vashta Narada (Doctor Who); it's noted that "Ground Control really lost this one", along with its late-game spriteswaps being named "Major Tom" and "Aether Oddity" (David Bowie).
- A comment between the effects of Gog's Tactical Pyre and Infernal Torus wonders, - <!-- but does it blend? --> A few lines below that, under the effect Flamefield 2, a developer adds the line, - <!— Because you're worth it. —> from L'Oréal.
- One of the higher-tier pieces of headgear you can find is a red, wide-brimmed Vampire Hunter's Hat (identical to the hat worn by the protagonist of Hellsing), which according to the tooltip "isn't really suited for vampire hunting, but what can you expect out of someone who thinks that spelling 'DRACULA' backwards is a good way to hide their identity?"
- The achievement "The Humanoid Typhoon" is an obvious shout out to Vash's moniker in Trigun.
- The "Knightly Leap" skill in the "Artful Dodger" skill tree allows you to teleport two spaces forward, and then one to either side, similar to the knight piece in chess.
- The description for the katana, "All the best stuff is made in Japan," is not just a Lampshade Hanging on Katanas Are Just Better trope, but also a quote from Back to the Future.
- One of the enemies' taunts is from Clerks: "i wasn't even supposed to be here today".
- Dr. Strangelove:
- Skills in the Communist group might give you the debuff "Water Supply Fluoridation". According to the description, this "has decreased the strength of your personal bodily fluids."
- Drop a nuclear bomb (not Bolt of WMD) and get Dr. Strangelove achievement!
- One of the enemy phrases is "his name is Robert Paulson", a direct quote from Fight Club.
- A Fistful of Dollars: One desirable clothing item is The Poncho With No Name.
- Ghostbusters (1984): Tobin's Spirit Guide.
- Also the description of the Fungal Arts skill tree: "You collect molds, spores, and fungus and plant them on the corpses of your enemies to see what useful grows out of it. Icky."
- The Archaeology skill tree is loaded with Indiana Jones references, including a skill called "It Belongs In A Museum". You even start out equipped with a sufficiently Nice Hat. Additionally, the description of first Egyptian Magic skill, "Glyph of the Asp," asks, "Why did it have to be snakes?"
- One demi-artifact armor piece is a Mad Max-esque black leather jacket with one-sleeve. It forms part of the crafting recipe for the Magical Badass Jacket, whose description is "Do you feel magic? Well do ya, punk?" (Dirty Harry)
- Monty Python and the Holy Grail: The Holy Hand Grenade is one of the top-tier thrown items in the game.
- The Princess Bride: Maxing out Sword Mastery will cause you to occasionally gain a tremendous, but brief, counterattack chance buff. The name of the effect? I Am Not Left-Handed.
- Star Wars: The Mace of Windu is practically a lightsaber in appearance and (most of its) stats, although its considered by the game to be a mace.
- 300: "This is madness! No; THIS ... IS ... CAKETOWN!"
- 2001: A Space Odyssey: The Bone Club: "Giant black rectangles just make you SO. ANGRY." You also find black monoliths sitting in some floors.
- The Wicker Man (2006):
- One of the creatures' messages appears as "Killing me won't bring back your honey."
- The achievement for dying from thaumites is "Not the Bees!"
- There's a tome that contains nothing but the phrase "NOT THE BEES" over and over again.
- The phrase "Only a Flesh Wound" from Monty Python and the Holy Grail makes its way as a description over shrugging off damage.
- The third skill of the Werediggle skill line is named after An American Werewolf in London.
- The Lundi enemy is a complete shoutout to Lumbergh of Office Space in both flavor text and ability to inflict The Mondays on the player.
Live Action Television
- One of the possible readable books that serve as warnings or useless info is named A Tome of Fire or Ice.
- Wizardlands introduces a new alloy (that Banksters start with a few samples of) called Rearden Metal (Atlas Shrugged) ...which is really "only" good for attaching a powerful existential attack brand to your weapons. Thing is, perhaps because there was no government or other neutral oversight, the stuff has a tendency to explode. Generally when exposed to enough sunlight. Or oxygen. Also worth noting is that instead of the usual alchemical symbols of the more normal metals, Rearden ingots are stamped with a dollar sign—the sign that Galt traces in space at the very close of Atlas Shrugged as the sigil of the Gulch.
- Conan the Barbarian: The Rage skill tree is full of pledges in the general direction of "For Crom!"
- The Mobile Carrot class of enemy is described as "a man-eating carrot, not to be confused with a man eating carrot" — evidently a reference to an Ambiguous Syntax moment in GrailQuest.
- A top-tier sword features the following description: "This sword always strikes in every way it possibly would. Battery operated". The name of the weapon is, of course, "Doul's Possible Sword" from The Scar.
- Finishing the Werediggle skill tree from the DLC nets you 'Team... Jacob?', another Twilight reference.
- The Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster references The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
- A low-leveled, though Dummied Out, necklace is named "The Eye of Argon", and it has corresponding flavor text after the infamous book.
- The Crown of Yellow is a magic-oriented headgear item with origins from The King in Yellow. The book itself is among the many magic tomes you can find and use. (Apparently "the beginning is a little dull", if the tooltip's to be believed.)
- Brax and the Dread Collectors are characters in Craig Shaw Gardner's Ebenezum and Wuntvor series of comic fantasy novels.
- The boss of Diggle Hell is Vlad Digula.
- One of the artifact amulets is "The Crownstar Addendum", which is a piece of jewellery in Against a Dark Background.
- Moby-Dick: One of the monsters' comments is "From Hell's heart I stab at thee".
- The blurb for Righteous Resistance mentions the Bible story about a group of youths getting eaten by bears for mocking the Prophet Elijah.
- Mastering the Magic Training skill tree gives an achievement called Tom Marvolo Riddle Award for Scholastic Merit.
- The item "Monofiliment(sic) sword" with the flavour text "Favoured by giant cat-aliens" is a reference to Ringworld and the character Speaker-to-Animals who uses this type of weapon.
- Arrested Development: The description for cutoffs (leg armor) says "it's a real medical condition!"
- Doctor Who:
- When selecting Psionics as a skill, the description reads "No! Not the mind probe!".
- One of the best pieces of neck armor in the game is the Time Lord Scarf.
- In some alternate dimensions accessible by graffiti passwords, the TARDIS also makes an appearance.
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Self-sealing stem bolts can be found and crafted.
- The Paranormal Investigator skill is a reference to The X-Files.
- Emomancy references The Cure, Joy Division ("Love Will Teleport Us Apart"), and My Chemical Romance.
- A low-level footwear item is named "The Flippy Floppies", a Talking Heads reference ("Making Flippy Floppy".)
- MC Hammer: One piece of equipment is the Parachute Pants, which give you an amazing +10 Dodge skill, which means the monsters literally Can't Touch This!
- Equip the Warhammer as well for the achievement "You Know What Time It Is". The Warhammer's description reads, "Stop. It's that time again."
- A The Grim Reaper-like monster is called Deth. A more powerful version is a Megadeth. Its description notes that it's missing a couple of ümlaüts.
- The Prodigy: The description for "Pyrokinesis" (Psionics): "You're a firestarter, a terrific firestarter."
- Two abilities in the Viking Wizardry tree reference the Rhapsody of Fire songs Triumph For My Magic Steel and Unholy Warcry. The references continue in Conquest of the Wizardlands with the Emerald Sword: "Forged by the last Winged Unicorn; wielded by the Swordmaster to defeat ultimate evil, this sword has found its way to YOU." Said expansion also has an achievement named Magic of the Wizard's Hangover (referencing Magic of the Wizard's Dream, a.k.a. The One with... Christopher Lee Singing).
- Enter a pocket gate dimension and listen to the music. Does it sound similar to End of Time (from Chrono Trigger)? The title of the track on the soundtrack, "Temporal Parod(y)ox", and the description: "It's a loving homage to another tune. If you don't recognize the source material, perhaps playing some 90s RPGs will trigger an association!" prove that this was intentional and not just a coincidence
- With the Wizardlands expansion, you can encrust your armor with pieces of meat. The name given to this? Gaga's Glaze.
- Michael Jackson: One piece of armor you can find is "One Sparkling Glove".
- Iron Maiden: The description for Leather Boots is "try to die with these on", referencing the song "Die With Your Boots On".
- Forgotten Realms: The final skill in the Dual Wielding line is blatantly called "Not Drizzt".
- "Lutefisk For The Lutefisk God" — not to be confused with the Warhammer god Khorne's "Blood for the Blood God." (Although the two are old poker buddies.)
- No Exit: Hell is Other Diggles, obtained by entering the Diggle Hell.
- Et tu? from the Assassination skill tree refers to Caesar's famous line from Julius Caesar.
- Ace Attorney: The final skill in the "Magical Law" skill tree is called "Wright's Irrefutable Argument".
- The Assassin description mentions that there's something about a creed. (Assassin's Creed)
- Braid: One of the comments that appears on levelling up is "Metaphor for the atomic bomb".
- Castlevania: Killing Vlad Digula nets you the achievement "Simon Belmont"
- Colossal Cave: The second expansion pack adds "a series of twisty little rooms, all different".
- Several of the second floor's tombs bear the names of the default party members from Darklands.
- Dawn of War: Blaze of Glory effect: You can not burn, for your heart is already ablaze with passion. If you die this day you will die in glory, but NO! you will not die this day! It is your enemies who will taste death and defeat! You are a CLOCKWORK KNIGHT! Long live the Queen! Glory to THE EMPIRE!
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution: Equip a full set of clockwork limbs and weaponry to get the "I Didn't Ask For This" achievement.
- The original title screen, the status bar that's a close-up of your character's head and gets progressively more battered and bloodied when injured, and the graphic design of Floor 3 are all shout outs to Doom.
- One of the armours originates from Doom, while equipping a helmet based off Quake along with it, gives you a "Realms of the Id" achievement.
- One of the audio tracks is a Suspiciously Similar Song version of the Level 1 tune from Doom 2.
- Continuing the theme is the Interdimensional Axe - it's the Quake axe!
- The Diggle Hell looks exactly like how the first episode in the original Doom finishes. You get teleported into a small room, surrounded by enemies. Except you can win this time.
- There are occasionally monster closet traps that you can trigger on floor 3. The log line you receive when when you trigger it is "It's an ambush! You're doomed!"
- The "Combat Momentum" perk advises that you rip and tear!
- Fellow indie game Dwarf Fortress gets tons of them. The biggest might be the ever-present ludicrously bizarre names randomly generated for all places and artifacts, one of Dwarf Fortress' famous traits.
- The description for the highest difficulty setting is the official DF motto "Losing is Fun!"
- The description for the "Shoddy Dwarven IED" trap reads "This is a sub-par Dwarven IED design. All craftsdwarfship is pretty lousy, actually."
- There's lots of items directly referencing the Dwarves in their flavor text, including but not limited to the Plastic Bolt and the Dwarven Boomerang.
- The Plump Helmet is named for the food crop mushroom grown by dwarves in Dwarf Fortress, and its description reads "This helmet was crafted by dwarven smiths in ages long past from the weapons cast down by the dying goblins foolish enough to attack their undermountain fortress," a nod to the common strategy of salvaging metal from weapons dropped in goblin assaults.
- The steel ingot description read "The steel ingot is a testament to the fact that you'd really rather be playing some other video game with a more finely honed crafting system. Oh well...". It is created by mixing chalk, coal and iron, which is similar to the way it is created in Dwarf Fortress (and indeed, in the real world).
- The tooltip for Conflagratory resistance states that Asbestos Armor can cause, among other things, "Strange Moods" which are a random thing that can happen in Dwarf Fortress.
- The description for bone crossbow bolts states "From the dark and icy north come these bolts carved by Dwarven bone-crafters from the still-twitching remains of fearsome undead skeletal elk", referencing the community fortress Nist-Akath.
- In the Conquest of the Wizardlands expansion, it's possible to craft a Dwarven Atom-smasher—a reference to the nickname given to drawbridges in DF.
- There is a very subtle reference to Boatmurdered on the second floor with a grave that subtly references StarkRavingMad and the miasma he made during his turn in Boatmurdered.
- One engraved artifact (as in, Dummied Out code) in the game's spell database is a note that says, "Skatha's Roots, added 2/6/2011. On the documentation is a picture of a programmer and an artist. The programmer is crying. The artist is laughing."
- One of the types of booze is "Sewer Brew", which the Dwarves in Dwarf Fortress brew from ratweed.
- The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion: Horse Armor, which is completely useless and incredibly expensive.
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim: As of 1.0.8, enemies will shout FUS RO DAH from time to time.
- Final Fantasy IV: The achievement for completing the polearms skill tree is named "Golbez Is My New Master Now."
- Half-Life: "Haywire Chance affects how likely your spells are to trigger a highly unstable resonance cascade event"
- Mass Effect: In the lower levels of the dungeon one encounters Diggle Harbingers, advising the player to embrace Diggly perfection.
- If you happen to encounter a Game-Breaking Bug that makes the game crash (Most infamously the, fortunately fixed, save-game incompatibility of the latest patches), you get an achievement called "Suddenly the dungeon collapses!", which is the message you get when NetHack crashes.
- The message log will sometimes mention, "You hear the chime of a cash register," an event possible in NetHack.
- In the tech-based floor, the chests look suspiciously like a certain Portal puzzler's famous box.
- The name of the first DLC is a reference to Realm of the Mad God.
- The Secret of Monkey Island gets at least two: the flavour text for Grog uses part of the game's recipe, and The Helm of Threepwood (it's a stainless steel cooking pot).
- Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri:
- Sometimes when exiting the game, you will hear "Please don't go. The Diggles need you."
- One of the Psionic abilities lets you Nerve Staple enemies like in Alpha Centauri. "Indiscrete use of this spell may provoke economic sanctions."
- SimCity: The message log has a few random lines, including "You can't cut back on funding! You will regret this!"
- Monsters you're supposed to kill as part of a sidequest are marked on your map with icons that look like Space Invaders enemies.
- Super Mario Bros.: The description for the Toady (a walking mushroom): "I'm sorry, but your love interest is in another dungeon."
- The second expansion pack's "official" name (You Have To Name The Expansion Pack), as well, is a shout-out to You Have to Burn the Rope as well as being instructions on using the pack.
- Zork: Zorkmids.
- One of the rooms in the game is named "I heard you like Mudkips", after the meme from Pokémon.
- An unimplemented hunger mechanic references Gauntlet with the phrase "Hero needs food ... badly!"
- Thaumaturgic Conflux, a skill from the Ley Walker skill line that has a chance of increasing mana temporarily, has flavor text that references the Starcraft meme "power overwhelming".
- Wing Commander: The Monofiliment Sword is "favored by giant cat aliens."
- The fire arrows are best used against thatch-roof cottages (Homestar Runner).