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Too Dumb To Live: Video Games

Sometimes, the dumb moments come from the player. When that happens, you have Yet Another Stupid Death. If the computer does it, it's Artificial Stupidity.

Note: As a Death Trope, all spoilers on this page are unmarked.

  • In Age of Empires III: The War Chiefs campaign Sheriff Billy Holme, cornered by his ex partner Chayton (Holme had a Face-Heel Turn) chooses to back into a cliff face surrounded by TNT. After talking for a bit, Holme attempts a Quick Draw shot on Chayton, forgetting that A) his gun was at his back while Chayton had his at his side and B) Native Tribes have a quick reaction time and Chayton was half Sioux. You can guess how it ends.
  • In Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura, Fantastic Racism is pretty common, especially against Half-Orcs. However, racism against Half-Ogres is quite rare, due to the fact that the few people who openly pick on such big and strong individuals usually wind up dead.
  • Baldur's Gate:
    • Skie Silvershield in the first game. Just... Skie Silvershield... Especially when it comes to her Bastard Boyfriend Eldoth, and, well... life in general.
    • In his epilogue for the final game, Edwin receives a Fate Worse Than Death variant where he's dumb enough to try and pick a Wizards Duel with Elminster. Elminster slaps him down and turns him into Edwina, as well as implicitly stripping Edwina of her magic in the process.
    • The AI in the first game was very limited and frequently made enemies do near suicidal things. The second game was moderately better about it, but the AI was still so poor in general that there are several Game Mods out there that provide improved AI scripts. Some of these, like Tactics or Sword Coast Stratagems, can actually make the game Nintendo Hard...
  • A video game version of the BattleTech and its attendant Mechwarrior roleplaying game, Crescent Hawk's Inception, allows the character to stage a jailbreak using a Humongous Mecha. The guards get this, first for storing said 'Mech on the prison grounds without some kind of security, allowing the player to hightail it a 'Mech and steal it to make the escape. However, this can get flipped around, since the player can go back to the jail after the break...which means they would have to go in on foot, without the benefit of the 'Mech as a trump card. Cue guards swarming and executing the player.
  • In Bejeweled 3, the butterfly jewels fly up towards the spider, even though they seem to know it will eat them, leaving the player to save them by matching them with gems of the same colour.
  • BioShock:
    • Dr Suchong, who created the Big Daddies, was having trouble imprinting the Big Daddies on the little sisters. In a audio diary it is shown that he got angry and slapped a little sister. You find his body drilled to his worktable.
    • Or splicers in general. Let's see, one type of Big Daddy has a massive drill that can bore through one's stomach and the other has a rivet gun and proximity mines. A Wrench will definitely work.
    • The first time you're shown a Big Daddy in action is a good demonstration of this. A Leadhead Splicer (who at least has a revolver) spots a Little Sister. Believing, despite what past experience has to have shown him, that she is alone, he attacks. You see this on the other side of a reinforced plate glass window; five seconds later, you can loot the splicer's corpse after he's thrown through said window.
    • The splicers are excused from this as they are more along the lines of too insane to live.
  • People in Black & White. Too dumb, lazy, and apathetic to live, to be more precise.
  • The Poe Twins from Lunar Knights brag to the two main characters that their Casket Armors are unbeatable because one is immune to gunfire and the other is immune to swords. One of the main characters has a gun and the other has a sword, so you can guess how well that works out for the Poes.
  • Fritz in Brain Dead 13 at times. For example, in the intro, when Fritz was gonna blow up Lance with a cannon, Lance tricks Fritz by shouting, "BOOM!" Fritz evilly laughs, but stops, and the screen cuts to Lance saying, "Hiya, pal." Fritz then screams as his eyes pop out of his head, then checks if the cannon fired, and gets blasted in the face. Fritz is invincible, however.
  • They're technically not alive, but Champions of Norrath has a level where you must escort souls to freedom. They don't bother to stay behind you, they run into lava, and when they're attacked they just stop and kneel, letting the enemies beat on them! What's worse, if all of them are killed you have to restart the level. And there are several of these escort levels.
  • Buster Badshot from the classic arcade game Cheyenne (made by Exidy of Death Race infamy) is implied to be this. He's supposedly a bounty hunter who goes after various gangs (with various "creative" names), but all he ever does is walk around the stage (or drive the stagecoach in one level) while the player has to protect him (and get the gangs). Indeed, even his last name alone seems to imply this.
  • The people in the mall in Choice of Zombies. They have no quarantine or even medical examination period of any sort, they don't post lookouts, and they insist everyone store guns and ammo separately. In the middle of a Zombie Apocalypse. Unsurprisingly, it turns out someone was infected and turns, then infects their whole medical ward.
  • 7 Days a Skeptic:
    • Something has been killing off the members of a starship. The three surviving crew members have just been attacked by the revived corpse of the captain, the first to die. They defeated it, but they're not sure whatever animated it is really dead. Then they realize they can flee the ship on the escape pods... after a good night's rest. In separate rooms. (Not to mention the fact that the escape pods are restricted access!)
    • The whole ship was built with massive and illogical design flaws, explicitly with the assumption that nothing would go wrong. (Any engineer in any field can attest how stupid that is.) In addition, the crew are either incompetent or unwilling to do their job - the engineer routinely sends the counselor to fix things while he hides in the mess hall. Yahzee has admitted that many things were left this way because the plot wouldn't work otherwise.
    • If you think that's bad, they didn't choose to have a good night's rest before they used the escape pods. That's how long it took the automated systems to prepare the pods to be used. Either the people who designed the ship were really confident that nothing would go wrong, or they expected the escape pods to be used more like Save Scumming than actual emergency measures.
  • Paragon City is actually called "The City of Heroes" in-universe, a fact that is well-known and well-publicized throughout the city. So the street thugs you meet at the lowest levels should know better by now than to draw their weapons and charge at the people in costumes. Even if they do know better, it doesn't stop them from trying, anyway.
    • While it was a case of various AI-related issues piling up, special mention has to go for both Lady Jay and Fusionette; they used to have near-unlimited sight range, but their ranged powers were strangely short-ranged. They also didn't understand that you DON'T have to go chasing after someone that ran away. Which means that while the group running the mission is doing perfectly fine, they suddenly got "MISSION FAILED" because the character they were leading around decided to chase after one runner, directly into the path of three full-sized mob groups and then fight them all. This was fixed by toning down their aggro range, toning UP their attack range, and sometimes just letting you beat the mission even after they're defeated.
  • In Civilization, AI players that are losing against you may offer a peace treaty. The stupidity comes in when they will, with very few exceptions, accept nothing less than unconditional peace, even when they still have gold and resources to offer in tribute. Never mind that if you're kicking their teeth in hard enough that they feel the need to beg for peace, you probably have the forces needed to finish them off. A sensible person would probably offer everything he has in an attempt to stave off his defeat, but not the AI, oh no!
  • Clive Barker's Undying:
    • Jeremiah. Let's go over his plans again: You are the weakest of the five undead siblings that no mortal weapon can kill for real. You trick the hero into finding a supernatural weapon that actually can and into using said weapon for killing your stronger siblings, their armies of demonic mooks and extremely powerful evil wizard. So far so good. Very smart of and good for you. Revealing everything to and mocking/threatening said hero while you have no demonic armies or powers to hurt him in any way? Not so much.
    • There are still servants working at the Covenant Manor, despite the fact that many have died from demonic beasts. One guy finally decides he's had enough and leaves, only to get killed at the front gate.
    • Hey guys, you know what sounds like fun? Let's read a ritual out of this weird occult book near some creepy standing stones. Nothing could possibly go wrong!
  • Pretty much everyone in Command & Conquer Red Alert 2 and 3 falls under this. In Red Alert 2, the Soviets decide to give the character Yuri mind control powers, and then not do anything to keep him from running amok with them, which he does. Using his powers, he gains a private army, and creates some mind control machines that he plans to use to mind control the whole planet, and nobody pays any attention to them. Later, he radios the allied intelligence lieutenant and mind controls her, but doesn't use any secure or scrambled lines, leading to his call being traced back to his main base. In Red Alert 3, the Soviets go back in time to kill Einstein to keep him from developing the technology that allowed the Allies to beat them (again). That works, but in the new time-line, Japan is turned into a global superpower called the Empire of the Rising Sun, which the Soviets pay no attention while they are trying to invade Europe, which causes them to get invaded. The Allies display similar incompetence when it turns out that there was a city destroying laser weapon that could hit targets across the globe in Mt. Rushmore, which they could have used to easily defeat the Soviets, but the American President only decides to use it on the Soviets when they and the Allies have to team-up against the Empire. Granted, there is some speculation that the president was really a robot set-up by the Empire (he turns out to be in the Empire campaign, but there are not hints in the others). The Allies later fail to pick up that the Soviets turned on them until a Soviet scientist defects to them. They apparently didn't learn their lesson in the expansion, because in the Allied they decide to trust the Empire's crown prince Tatsu to help them deal with some insurgents, and then not anticipate him turning on them. At the end of the Soviet campaign, the Soviets note that Allies are starting to make the mistake of trusting them again after the Soviets defeat an evil-megacorporation.
    • No hints? Every time Ackerman stepped in, it was to keep the Allies and Soviets fighting, which would have made them easier targets for the Empire. Gotta read between the lines.
    • Tiberium Wars also has some nominees in the form of the grunt soldiers. Even after being ordered to retreat, as soon as they take any fire they'll charge directly at the thing that's attacking them. And again, and again. Even if they're one squad of riflemen up against a Zerg Rush of tanks. It gets to the point that you might as well just write them off the second they get close to the enemy.
    • It is, however, implied in the case of Yuri that for all his intelligence and psychic capability, Yuri himself does not have a very solid grasp of military tactics. He mostly just relies on sheer psychic power to overcome his foes.
  • Used as humorous Lampshade Hanging in Conquests of the Longbow: in one of the final segments, the player (as Robin Hood) has to sneak into a tower to rescue an captive knight. If the player decides to talk to the enemies he's sneaking past, Robin will say "Excuse me, could you lend me a hand? You see, I'm nearly safe, but I thought I'd do something truly foolish instead and get myself killed." The enemies gladly oblige.
  • Jin in Dead Island. It's hard to interpret her actions as anything less than Driven to Suicide. She starts by hijacking the truck and threatening abandonment unless you help everyone, which results in a number of survivors being killed. She then runs off to help prisoners at the police station, which get a survivor at the church killed before she is gang raped. Then on the maximum security prison she doesn't want to be there, which is fair enough, but Yerema points out her mental state and when confronted by Ryder White at gunpoint she angers him about trying to kill everyone, before releasing his infected wife which promptly attacks him. Ryder reacts by shooting Jin, which at this stage is clearly Suicide by Cop.
    • She also insists on going alone to (re)kill her zombified father (for sentimental reasons, as he is locked away and not a threat). Despite having no combat experience she goes back to his workshop unaccompanied and releases him. She actually manages to shoot and kill him with no problem but this could have gone really badly and she gained nothing by doing it.
  • Lindsay in Dead Rising. Could have avoided the plot if she hadn't opened the mall's front door, which a horde of zombies is clawing at right now, in order to let her precious little poochy in. The dog is clearly also a zombie. (The glowing red eyes are a dead giveaway.) The devteam clearly knew what people would think of her, though, and in the bonus Infinity Mode, where food-hoarding survivors are trying to kill you just as hard as the zombies, she dies as soon as you see her.
  • Dead Rising 2: A nameless mercenary mook on a motorbike sees Chuck Greene pick up a long, thin metal bar and crouch around the side of a stack of shelves. Instead of driving into sight of Chuck from a safe distance, he guns his bike right alongside the shelves, and is promptly speared.
  • The Church of Unitology in Dead Space. What they worship? An Artifact of Doom that turns you into mindless, bloodthirsty, psycopathic ZOMBIES. And then, even after investigating the setting of the first game, they bring the ship back to a densley populated human colony. Granted, that's not as bad, given that the Artifact of Doom was destroyed and the ship was harmless. Until they make a new, bigger Artifact of Doom. And intend to make even more. What happens next is easy to guess. At least the small group of Unitologists you meet eventually end up dying in the vacuum of space by a Cavalry Betrayal hostile-to-you-and-them gunship.
    • In Dead Space 3, we find out the Unitologists were not alone in this regard. The entire reason space is 'dead' is because countless other alien civilizations before humanity were just as dumb. The Markers seem to bring out the suicidal stupidity in all but the most intelligent and gifted people, who "only" go a bit crazy.
  • Truly, many AI characters are Too Dumb to Live in ways the programmers probably didn't intend. One example in Deus Ex: Miguel, the NSF member whom you may invite with you on your escape from the Majestic 12 prison. He doesn't believe in stealth and is liable to charge as soon as he sees an enemy, wielding only a combat knife. Has anyone ever managed to keep him alive all the way to the exit?
    • In fact, it's quite easy to keep Miguel alive; leave him in his cell until you've killed all the enemy soldiers, then ask him to follow you out.
  • Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening: Bann Esmerelle and the other nobles conspiring to get rid of the Warden Commander if the Warden Commander is the Fereldan Grey Warden imported from Origins. They do this knowing fully that the Warden has both faced and claimed victory over including but not limited to: several dragons, an Archdemon, the Witch of the Wilds, a Pride Demon, a broodmother, and Tevinter slavers led by a powerful Magister. Not to mention he/she (with hardly any effort) dispatches bandit gangs on a regular basis, defeated a Fereldan war hero in one on one combat, stormed an Arl's estate and either killed several of the previously mentioned war hero's top knights, or escaped from the largest Fereldan prison while leaving dozens of corpses in his/her wake, and plows through countless numbers of Darkspawn while coming out with hardly a scratch.
    • For that matter, any enemy of a Fereldan Warden Commander in Awakening.
    • In Origins, Arl Howe thinks it's a wonderful idea to taunt the Human Noble Warden about how he butchered your family.
    • Lampshaded by a character in Origins: "And people actually voluntarily attack you? Are they stupid?"
    • In the City Elf origin, even though Vaughan realizes Tabris has just slaughtered their way through his house and guards, the best offer he's willing to make is to pay them off to let him keep (and rape) the kidnapped women. Apparently his libido is a higher priority than his life.
  • Dragon Age II: By Act 3, the random gangs of thugs attacking your character at night definitely count. Bonus points when they do it in front of the huge statue built in your honor for saving the city from the Qunari, possibly by fighting the leader of their entire military in a one-on-one duel.
    • The Mark of the Assassin DLC Also gives us a pair of sterling examples. Duke Prosper Montfort and Baron Arlange.
      • Duke Prosper dies mostly because he spends his last moments monologuing, while clinging to the edge of a cliff. Lampshaded by both Snarky!Hawke and Varric.
      • Baron Arlange manages to, depending on player choices, be too dumb to live TWICE. The first time, he decides to try to kill your party after you've just killed a Wyvern, because he had paid to be the first person to kill one in the hunt. You can choose to spare him after kicking his ass. If you do, you'll end up facing him later, never mind how easily you curbstomped him last time you fought.
  • The pack beasts from Dungeon Siege tend to fall victim to this trope - you have to protect them very carefully, or they have a tendency to wander into the line of fire. It gets worse in the expansion, Legends of Arranna, when you get pack beasts which have attacks - they continue to target and attack enemies even when they're hopelessly outclassed. You waste more resurrection spells on the pack beasts than anyone else...
  • Dwarf Fortress: "Being on fire sure makes you thirsty! I feel like a good beer." A dwarf that goes to get a beer will find himself in your booze stockpile, which, more often than not, will be full of wooden barrels full of things vastly more potent than beer...
    • The Dwarves will also drop everything to collect the fallen items of the dead, even if it's next to an Elephant or on fire, or a Flaming Elephant, that's on Fire.
    • Sometimes a mason will build a wall from the wrong direction, leaving him trapped. If the player doesn't notice in time, said mason dies of dehydration or starvation.
    • Military dwarves will not run away from a monster they're chasing if restationed somewhere else or told to kill something else. In the case of titans or megabeasts, this results in Fun.
    • Dear Urist McMiner, do not sleep in the aquifer. Sincerely, Save Scumming.
    • Some dwarven soldiers seem to think that a goblin siege is the best time to go on break. Or get drunk.
  • Arniel Gane in The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. He actually wants to replicate the event that caused the Dwemer to vanish from existence. Fortunately for the world, the shortcuts he takes in his experiment ensure that he is the only to be killed by his stupidity. Better yet, his ghost becomes a very powerful combat summon.
    • What makes it worse of his methods: He finally gets his hands on Keening, one of three tools necessary to perform the experiment he's trying to replicate. You'd think he'd be cautious and scientific with his use of it, right? Or at least have some actual plan for using it, especially considering he's working with a bare fraction of what he would actually need? Nope! Right after giving a lecture about how dangerous Keening is, he just starts swinging it in the general direction of his bargain-basement Heart of Lorkhan facsimile. Humanity is probably lucky he wasn't smart enough to hurt anyone besides himself.
    • Also, Silus Vesuius wants to recreate Mehrunes' Razor, the artifact of Mehrunes Dagon, Daedric Prince of Destruction due to his belief that the Mythic Dawn of the previous game should be celebrated for nearly destroying the world.
      • Not to mention that he thinks he will be rewarded for assembling the pieces of the Razor when he's making you do all the work. Even the nice Daedric Princes don't hand out prizes for layabouts; Mehrunes Dagon decides that Silus can at least assist in testing your dedication in handling His weapon.
    • Boethiah's cultists. What sort of sane person chooses to worship someone whose portfolio includes betrayal? The second challenge for that quest includes you and the other cultists holding a Battle Royale to see who's most worthy to be Boethiah's Chosen, and the third is to track down Her last Chosen and kill him because She doesn't think he's up to scratch anymore. No matter what you do, your chances of survival are poor.
    • Estormo is even more arrogant and foolish than your average Thalmor, provoking the Dragonborn after you have just killed a powerful Dragon Priest is a horrible idea.
    • Too Dumb to Live disease seems rampant in Skyrim. In Ravenscar Hollow, you find a bandit mook who begs you to free him from the Hagravens who have captured him and put him in a cage. When you do, he turns around and tries to mug you. Obviously the fact that you very likely just killed three Hagravens single-handedly to get him out of there completely eluded him. Bandits in general would count seeing as they're mostly decked out in furs and armed with poorly-made iron weapons and all completely eager to take on a mighty hero who has a plethora of powerful magical artifacts and a suit of armour made from the bones of the various dragons they've killed. Similarly, the mad necromancer in Rannvieg's Fast who smugly explains how he's going to kill you while slowly walking away with his back to you. And then there's that fire mage coven who decided that Sunderstone Gorge, a massive cavern filled with pools of flammable oil, would be a good place to hold up and train...
    • A number of the random encounters you run into fall into this. There's the thief, for example, who will walk up and demand the Dragonborn's money. The Dragonborn, who may be wearing armor made from the hearts of Daedra (which he killed), a mask ripped from the face of a Dragon Priest (which he killed), and weapons made from the bones of dragons (which he killed). Worse still, the thief won't take no for an answer- he can't be persuaded to stand down, though some lucky thieves escape with their lives (but not their cash) after tryig to mug their own Guildmaster.
  • In the first game of the Exile/Avernum series, Erika Redmark is one of three immensely powerful archmages that was tossed into Exile for being on the wrong side of a political struggle in the Mages Guild on the surface. Not being very genre savvy, the Emperor apparently never even paused to consider that pissing off one of the (if not THE) most powerful Sorceresses in the world would have consequences. It's not like she could construct a portal back to the surface that leads directly to your throne room, right?
    • Well, the Emperor's mages did give her a curse so powerful that even she could not repeal (and just that demanded the collective effort of hundreds of the Empire's best mages): what they did not expect was that once banished in Avernum, she would prove capable and cunning enough to change the local ecosystem to make the caves more habitable and build a whole civilization from the ground up as a tool to get her revenge: they knew she was the most powerful mage of the Empire, they just did not realize by what margin.
    • Also, the First Expedition to explore the underworld. "They were arrogant. They were stupid. And they were slaughtered."
  • In the Lost Chapters version of Fable, the evil option of the final choice is this. The options are either A. Throw an evil talking mask into the lava (Good) or B. put on the talking mask that tempts you with power and obviously just wants you to put it on so it can possess you (evil).
  • The player character himself/herself can qualify in Fallout3. You're given the option to destroy everything your parents worked for and basically end all life again by poisoning the country's water supply, which would kill any human not born in a Vault. But since it's later revealed that you weren't born in the Vault, drinking the water post-game hurts your stats and eventually kills you.
  • Too many to count in Fallout: New Vegas, but the thugs in Camp Searchlight stand out. This gang of looters are hanging out in a basement in a very radioactive town full of giant scorpions and ghouls, looking for radsuits. You know, the things you'd expect to bring before going in? If you bring them the wayward suit package, they'll agree to split the loot with you, if you help them loot the police station and the fire station. Note that the fire station is home to a gigantic queen scorpion, which you'll have to help take down. Once you've looted everything (because the thugs do nothing but loiter around), their leader tells you that he's going to kill you now. At this point, you're probably pointing your powerful gun at his face already, and blow him away (and possibly a few of his men, if you have the action points for it) the moment he stopped talking. Winner takes all.
    • There's a blink-and-you'll-miss-it Easter egg that counts under this trope. In Jacobstown, there are former resort bungalows which can be entered. One has a long-dead skeleton in an overturned chair next to a table where a card game clearly went awry. No points for guessing that the corpse on the floor was shot for being a cheater, as this trope first comes into play when the cheater's cards on the table are examined. Five kings. All of the same suit. It's entirely possible that they were shot for being terminally stupid, rather than just dishonest.
    • Caesar comes close to this. When you leave the Lucky 38, you get an audience with him and full forgiveness for crimes against the Legion, even if you've been using Legionaries for target practice. When you meet with him, he asks you to destroy a Securitron army in a bunker underneath the Fort. He has confiscated your Platinum Chip, which is the only way to enter the bunker, but gives it back and sends you in there fully armed and unsupervised. If you activate the army for your or Mr. House's use, Caesar will assume you destroyed it nonetheless. This might just be bad programming, but after destroying/activating the Securitron army, you can kill the guards in the weather station and return to the Fort fully armed.
    • Some of Caesar's troops in his Fort fit this. If you play a female Courier, some will attempt to insult and belittle you. Even if you're walking around in power armor and wielding a plasma rifle. While they're wearing salvaged football gear and armed with a machete.
    • President Kimball gives a speech maybe a half-mile from Caesar's Fort. This is slightly mitigated by the fact that he's doing it deliberately to show the Legion that he isn't afraid of them, and less-than-slightly aggravated by the fact that his security has so many holes, multiple Legion assassins manage to infiltrate the venue anyway.
  • Many of the "be weird" options in Fantasy Quest are fatal and pretty obviously so. Like, say, jumping off a cliff.
  • In Final Fantasy Tactics, Rapha (or Rafa in the original translation) becomes Too Dumb To Live in the Riovanes Castle Roof battle of Chapter 3, where Rapha charges blindly into Elmdore and his Assassins, even though she barely has any HP to withstand more than two hits and the Assassins can kill instantly. Considering the battle is lost if Rapha dies, and she starts out closer to the enemy than Ramza's party does, keeping her alive proves extremely frustrating for all but the fastest-moving parties. Her steadfast determination to get herself killed eventually prompted the "Rafa Syndrome" description for AI-controlled characters.
    • It should be noted that this is actually a Justified Trope, as Rapha has recently become suicidally depressed.
    • The Assassins themselves are actually Too Dumb to Live. The easiest way to beat the Riovanes Roof battle is to unequip one of your characters, lowering their HP. Rather than go for the instant win in Rafa, they will try to kill your naked character, leaving you ample time to win the battle.
  • Final Fantasy Tactics A2 has this with several missions that are an Escort Mission. Some of the units you have to protect are usually several levels lower than the enemy party, yet they will gleefully run up and try to attack them when their damage is equivalent to poking someone with a stick. And yes, doing this will invariably activate the enemy's counter attack skill, which is likely to kill them in one hit. So be sure to have your Paladins covering them at all times, kay?
  • Some of the above examples are about characters taking on enemies far out of their league, but that's nothing compared to killing yourself directly. In Final Fantasy VI, check before sending Sabin, Gau, or Strago into a Colosseum fight. Each one may have learned a skill designed to hurt or heal others at the expense of his own life. No longer under control of the player, they may fail to realize that these moves make sense only in team battles, if ever. When fighting alone, it's instant defeat.
  • In Final Fantasy VIII, Rinoa. Hey! Let's go alone and sneak into the room of an all powerful evil sorceress and ask her to put on a bracelet that will neutralize her power! Of course she will be gullible enough to accept jewelry from a complete stranger who's trespassing in her home and not, say, mind control you and put you in peril forcing your friends to drop what they're doing and come rescue you-wait, nope, that's exactly what happens. Though to be fair, the realization of her mistakes and that she can't keep up with the rest of the professional soldiers in the party is a part of her character development and she becomes much less impulsive and foolish as the game progresses.
    • Quistis gets an honorable mention for the same situation; she scolds Rinoa for not taking the situation seriously enough and for coming up with such a terrible plan in the first place, and is entirely right to do so... but then she feels guilty for being mean to Rinoa and insists on going back to apologize in the middle of the mission, forcing her team to go through a long, tedious dungeon full of dangerous monsters instead of actually solving the problem at hand.
  • The early villain Judge Ghis from Final Fantasy XII. Upon receiving a very important and very powerful piece of rock, one that he knows kingdoms were conquered and vast resources spent to acquire, he decides to find out what it does. By hooking it up to his giant airship's power supply. You can probably guess what happens next.
    • Let's elaborate for those who aren't in the know; the said MacGuffin is a magic-absorbing stone. A magic-absorbing stone being inserted into the power supply of an airship powered by magic stones. This is only minutes after Larsa's weaker, but still magic-absorbing stone eats a magic attack intended to kill the entire party, right in front of Ghis. Guy deserved it for being that dumb.
      • Bonus points for deciding to do this in mid-flight. Hint: if you're really going to tamper with the power supply of your physics-defying airship, you should probably do that on the ground.
    • Incidentally, Larsa pretty soundly averts this very trope. Though it could probably be chalked up to hopeful youth or brotherly love, Larsa seems the only person in the entire plot that doesn't seem to catch on that his elder brother Vayne is a half a peg up from a puppy raping sociopath. Averted, because even not only does Larsa survive, but he winds up being the only truly, purely good person in the story.
  • Astrid in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance when you first meet her. Despite being an archer and having barely any Speed, Defense or HP, she rushes straight towards the enemy and will usually be killed on the first turn if Ike doesn't get to her, which requires a great deal of shoving form the other party members.
    • Fire Emblem in general can be really bad about this. Almost any game in the series will have at least one map where a green (NPC) character will attempt to fight his/her way through the entire enemy army and die, or a recruitable enemy will rush your party and get slaughtered by your counterattacks. The only way to end the Artificial Stupidity is to have your army haul ass and recruit the character as quickly as possible.
    • In Awakening, the villager NPC's in one mission are completely unarmed and yet will still rush towards the enemy and get themselves killed as a result, even if you just wasted a Rescue staff trying to pull them out of danger in the first place!
  • The entire Armacham research team in charge of Project Perseus aside from F.E.A.R. aside from Chuck Habegger, Marshall Disler and Harlan Wade. When Paxton Fettel, the psychic commander that was born and raised to control an army of mindless meat puppet soldiers, was 10 years old, Alma Wade connected to his mind in what was called a "synchronicity event," and whatever happened was apparently catastrophic. At the time of the first game, Fettel is an adult and fully in charge of the clone army, and Chuck Habegger starts seeing evidence that another synchronicity event is coming. Everyone except Disler and Harlan Wade ignore his warnings, and when they take his side they are also ignored, until finally the synchronicity event occurs and hundreds of Armacham employees are slaughtered in the ensuing chaos.
  • "Five Nightsat Freddy's": The protagonist keeps coming back to the very dangerous pizzeria for whatever reason. He even turns the killer animatronics to their most dangerous levels on Night Seven. Either Mike Schmidt has a death wish, or he's just that confident in his abilities.
  • In Geneforge 3 it is not a good idea to visit a faction you've been working against, but a moment that takes the cake is a dialog option where after stealing a can of Phlebotinum from a Shaper's warehouse and handing it over to La Résistance, you go back to one of the Shaper's high chiefs and confess your crime. Note: The Shaper we're talking about is not only unbeatable for the level you're supposed to be by then, but is also commanding a squad of the toughest creatures in the game. Press X to Die indeed.
    • And in the 5th game, every ending except one has you join a faction, where the first order of business will be to remove the control tool implanted in your chest. Afterwards, you can decide to pay Shaper Rawal, the one who put it in there in the first place, a leisurely visit. Yes, he will notice the lack of a certain something. No, he will not be happy.
  • Most of the Mooks in one of the levels of The Getaway. Instead of trying to escape a ship that has a bomb on it, a major gunfight ensues and they start killing each other.
    Frank Carter: "Half the waterfront's about to go up and you're STILL arguing!"
  • In The Godfather: The Game, you will encounter citizens who run in the same direction as your car and throw themselves in its path. Almost all of the shopkeepers and racket bosses may qualify — if you push them too far, they will fight back, despite your proving to them that you won't flinch from beating the crap out of them or shooting them or others. It's almost as if they know they're indispensable and that you'll be worse off for killing them.
    • According to the aforementioned citizens, the best solutions for when two gangsters are having a shootout are to a) run right between the gangsters, b) simply keep walking between the gangsters; maybe they'll mi—BANG, or c) if they're already in the middle, just stand with their arms up and go "AAAAHHH!" That'll get them to stop shooting!
  • Played for Laughs in God Hand. In one cutscene, Gene punches two Mooks through a window into becoming A Twinkle in the Sky. When a third is about to attack, Gene gestures to him to stand in front of the same window. Guess what...
  • In the Grand Theft Auto series:
    • Civilians.
    A car is driving close to the sidewalk at high speeds; do you:
    A. Run or dive in the opposite direction of the car. "I'm not going to risk it!"
    B. Not do anything. "It doesn't look like the car is going to come close enough to hit me."
    C. Strategically dive into its path, making sure your head lines up perfectly with the front tire. "Ha! This close call should teach you a lesson about driving reckle--"
    If you answered C, congratulations! You are qualified to be a civilian in the GTA universe.
  • In a Newgrounds flash game called Gretel And Hansel, Hansel (the older brother and leader in the original fairytale) is very, very, very mentally challenged. He watches his little sister burn to death and doesn't seem fazed when she dies horribly in front of him in part 2. Speaking of part 2: Instead of saving his sister from the pit she fell into, he chases after a fairy and leaves Gretel to deal with a tree monster. When Gretel needs saving a second time, he shoves the fairy who's willing to help into his mouth, cuts that same fairy in half with scissors and even swallows those scissors. He then stands on a cliff's edge tip-toed. No wonder Gretel is our protagonist.
  • Heavy Rain:
    • Despite repeated admonitions from his father to "stay here", Jason wanders off in the middle of a crowded shopping center, gets outside, and somehow crosses the street. When his father gets outside, Jason darts into traffic, prompting Ethan to dive after him... and Jason dies, despite not being struck by the car.
    • He's not the only one, either. John Sheppard dies playing hide and seek on a construction site, having gotten his foot stuck in an exposed, flooding water main and drowned. It didn't suddenly flood, because it's been raining all day, and he didn't fall in, because he would have been washed down the pipe and never seen again, so how did he end up in the pipe to begin with? He climbed down into it to hide.
    • He also managed to drown with his face still above water, somehow.
  • Hector: Badge of Carnage has many of the inhabitants of the town of Clapper's Wreake qualify but the town's police force qualifies almost to a man. By the time Hector takes over the hostage negotiations they have lost 37 hostage negotiators. They just keep sending them forward and the Terrorist keeps shooting them in the head with a sniper rifle.
  • In Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis, the Big Bad Nazi scientist has found a machine that is supposed to turn anyone it's used on into a god, but instead just kills everyone it's used on. When he finishes running all his soldiers through the machine and killing them, he decides to test a new setting of it on the heroes who've been trying to stop him. When Indy points out that, if the experiment succeeds, the scientist will be facing an enraged god, the scientist turns the machine on himself instead. And is killed.
  • Jade Empire has a sequence where you can help the target of a bounty escape the city. To do so, you have to talk to the city guards while he leaves, telling them he's left the city. Only, instead of simply walking out like a normal traveler, he takes the opportunity to practice walking in a fashion obviously designed to call attention to himself. Then he goes back and does it again. It's like the game's begging you to tell the guard, "You know what, I guess he hasn't left yet. See that idiot? That's him."
  • One of the bosses of the Three Kings mission in Just Cause 2 uses a sort of satellite missile system to try and kill you. Thing is, you're on top of a building, without much room, and if you stand in certain spots, he'll happily blow himself up without even touching you.
  • Pretty much EVERYTHING Terra does in Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep deserves mention, but what takes the cake is after Xehanort kills Eraqus from behind, reveals his deceptions throughout the story, and reveals that he deliberately fueled the darkness inside Terra, Terra still continues to use the darkness from that point on. Xehanort even goads Terra into trying to use the darkness to defeat him right in front of him! Yes Terra, do EXACTLY what the guy who's been manipulating you the entire game wants you to do. There's no way that's playing right into his hands.
  • Unlike in most video games where the protagonist cuts their way through an army of foes, Joel and Ellie often run into enemies who have heard of them solely because they have reputation for leaving a trail of bodies everywhere they go, and never seem to take that into account when they think about stepping up to oppose them.
  • Any incompetent player (or even your friends) in Left 4 Dead. Since the game is all about team work, anyone who keeps making dumb decisions (wasting items, rushing ahead of the team to go solo, etc.) will have the trope name shouted by the other players.
    • The special infected AI are not always bright, but in Left 4 Dead 2, a Hunter and Jockey will be too happy to try to pounce you, despite the fact that you are revving a chainsaw aimed at their undersides!
  • The Lemmings will merrily march into Bottomless Pits or Booby Traps if nothing stands in between.
    • The spin-off The Adventures of Lomax also qualifies: defeated enemies turn into normal lemmings. It can be heartwarming to see them happily run away and then float away on their umbrellas... until you reach the levels with water and then see them merrily jump into water and drown immediately after rescuing.
  • Mass Effect:
    • The games give you the option to pursue several romances with your squadmates. In the second game, you can replace Samara with her daughter Morinth, who has a rare condition that causes her to kill anyone she mates with. You can proceed to sleep with her, instantly killing the player. The situation is even worse because Shepard does ask about this right before deciding to sleep with her. It turns out that a serial killer that makes heavy use of deception as part of her MO is willing to lie.
    • Lampshaded in the first game, where Wrex uses this as justification for fighting Krogan on Saren's side.
      "Anyone who faces us is either stupid, or on Saren's payroll. Killing the latter is business. Killing the former is a favor to the galaxy."
    • Conrad Verner deserves honorable mention. He's Shepard's biggest fan and in the first game, tries to become a Spectre. If Shepard blows him off, he picks a fight with a gang of turians and gets himself killed. If he survives, you can meet him again in Mass Effect 2, where he harasses a barkeeper over alleged red sand sales, which are actually legal on the planet they're on. If Shepard blows him off again, he tries to arrest a gang on top of a bus... only to fall off, get hit by several cars, and fall into a turbine. Subverted in Mass Effect 3 (if he lives), because after forming a charity foundation and helping out Shepard, he will take a bullet for Shepard unless you helped out a certain NPC in 2.
    • In Mass Effect 2, there's Warden Kuril, who was supposed to give Shepard a prisoner he was holding, but instead decides to capture Shepard and hold him/her for ransom or sell him/her on the black market as a slave. Yes, he tries to take the galaxy's biggest Badass prisoner. Without even taking away their guns. Needless to say, it does not end well for him. And Shepard still gets the prisoner s/he wants. The icing on the cake is Kuril boasting that the facility can easily handle three armed guests... he was wrong, of course, and things get worse when Shepard let Jack out. The only time he isn't this is when you see the precautions for keeping Jack imprisoned; she's shackled in cold storage and guarded by a trio of powerful Mecha-Mooks. But that still wasn't enough!
    • On Feros in the first game, the Corrupt Corporate Executive in charge of the colony fed colonists to a mind-controlling Starfish Alien as a science experiment. When you go to bring him in, assuming you can't talk him down, he pulls a gun on you. Being Alliance military and a Spectre, you're a much faster draw.
    • Admiral Rael'Zorah and his entire research team in Mass Effect 2. They were experimenting on geth parts to design better weapons against them. What did they do? They deliberately allowed every geth to be part of a network even though they knew that geth grow far more intelligent when more of them are networked together. They had absolutely no low tech way of handling the threat of the geth taking over such as a simple bomb. When their computer network was slow they deliberately took down the firewalls to speed it up while the geth were fully networked. And they did all this on a ship with weapons. If not for the very fortunate actions of one of the researchers, far more quarians than just the ones on the ship would've probably been killed.
    • The Rannoch Reaper in Mass Effect 3. Its one threat was Shepard standing on an open cliff using a machine to help the quarian fleet target it. But instead of simply horizontally sweeping the cliff with its one hit kill beam, it slowly vertically sweeps the beam forward and up, giving Shepard ample time to scurry to the other side of the cliff and continue giving the quarians targeting data. Or, since the Reaper is only vulnerable when trying to shoot, why doesn't it just walk over to Shepard and smash the cliff they're on.
    • A lot of combats are set up so that your enemies demonstrate this, thanks to Benevolent Architecture. Eclipse mercs are generally fairly smart, striking a good mixture of pure combat, tech and biotic troops...but during, say, Miranda's loyalty mission in 2, they seem to think that the best place to stand during a firefight is two feet away from an inexplicable canister of easily triggered high explosives. This tends to end very badly for them.
  • Not an intentional example, but in Medal of Honor: Rising Sun, there are portions of the game where you are with a platoon of NPCs. If a grenade is thrown within radius of your team (regardless of whether the grenade came from the enemy or from you), the team member that spots it will run to the grenade and attempt to kick it away from the area. Ideally, this can potentially save lives if they spot a grenade you didn't see and kick it before all of you become a bigger bloody firework than The Kid, but then the usefulness also depends on how far the grenade is from the would-be-hero. If the grenade is far enough from the NPC, that NPC who sees it will run toward the grenade (sometimes even involving more than one NPC in the area seeing it and dashing toward it) and attempt to kick it, but arrive just in time for all of them to explode on impact. It will never occur to them just how much time it'll take to get to the grenade to be worth risking their ass to save the platoon, it will also never occur to them if said grenade was in a distance that (as close as it was) is still avoidable by the rest of the platoon who are smart enough not to run to their death, and there are quite a bit of lols to be had when you're doing a casual play on one of the earlier levels where the stage is practically set up for making the friendly-mooks run to their deaths.
  • Pretty much every enemy in Mega Man (Classic), but some are just laughable at how dumb they are. An enemy that runs toward you only to pole jump over your head and run back toward where they came, Metools that can be baited into pits... But bosses just get the award of Dumbest Beings on Earth sometimes.
    • On subject of bosses, some examples are: Toad Man either dances and get interrupted by being shot or jumps about, Star Man that can go the entire battle without shooting you a Star Crash because of Water Wave, Metal Man that is fatally weak to his OWN WEAPON and, maybe the best, Cold Man that stands still in the opposite end of the room and attacks you with an ice wall or summons a cloud enemy that doesn't harm you directly but hinders your mobility and shooting if you get caught.
    • On the subject of story, Mega Man 9 takes the cake. Dr. Wily convinces 8 of Dr. Light's robots to follow him and then sets them on the city, and then pins the blame for it on Dr. Light while claiming to be reformed. Somehow the entire world actually falls for this and calls for Light's arrest, despite the fact that Wily has tried to take over the world several times before.
      • The actual good guys aren't much better. Wily claims to be reformed and trying to help him solve the current crisis to Dr. Light at least 4 separate times in the series, and every time it turns out he was behind everything the entire time while usually taking Light out and robs him of several pieces of tech in the process before escaping to his fortress. Somehow Dr. Light and Mega Man keep falling for this.
    • Meanwhile, the Repliforce of Mega Man X4 pull off one of the most stupid actions in the entire franchise. When framed for the destruction of a populated metropolitan city, their response to being told to lay down their arms and come in for questioning effectively can be summed up as giving the world a middle-finger and resisting orders as they try to then arm a space colony laser when they're summarily hunted down. All of this despite Sigma himself practically spelling out just how bad something like this could get to the General of said force, who shrugs it off and falls right into his ploy as a result.
    • And let's not forget the unnamed Neo Arcadian council in charge of Dr. Weil's punishment between the X series and Mega Man Zero. The man who singlehandedly was responsible for a conflict that killed 60% of mankind and 90% of all reploidkind? Turned into a regenerating Reploid and exiled from the only populated city left on Earth to suffer. Because they put eight Judges he personally created in charge of the proceedings. Somehow no one realized that he could simply wait everything out for his plans to come into action, which he did and nearly screwed the world over on. Infact, one might as well say that humanity in general in the franchise are too dumb to live, starting with poorly handling Dr. Wily's constant world domination attempts and then truly coming into a neverending flux with their mix of discrimination and repeated ignorance involving Reploids. Like the whole Copy generation of Reploids that could literally impersonate anyone they have in their data.
  • The Space Pirates in Metroid. They decide to reverse engineer Samus Aran's vast and dangerous weaponry and other such functions of the Power Suit she wears, all well and good up until they try to replicate the Morph Ball, of which they know jack about. Since it's been made clear that Science Team has vapor for brains, they went ahead anyway. Result:
    Pirate Log: "Aran's Power Suit technology remains a mystery, especially the curious Morph Ball function. All attempts at duplicating it have ended in disaster: four test subjects were horribly broken and twisted when they engaged our Morph Ball prototypes. Science Team wisely decided to move on afterward."
  • LeChuck from the Monkey Island series. Too many incidents to list. Same could apply to everyone else in the series except Elaine.
  • Esher from Myst V: End of Ages. He admits to Watson that he considers his Mengele-esque experiments on the Bahro essential. And he wondered why Watson did not give him the tablet?
  • Nancy Drew games provide many options along these lines. In Deception Island, for example, you can make and eat a sandwich comprised of stuff that includes mayonnaise, Koko Kringles Ice Cream, fresh jellyfish, mustard, baking soda and tomatoes. And then get food poisoning.
  • Nicole: The titular character, for reasons unknown to anyone with a functioning brain, decides that the correct response to being targeted by a kidnapper who has already kidnapped and drugged three women before her is to tell no one about the threatening messages that she has been receiving. Not even the police, because she doesn't want anyone getting hurt. And then it gets worse, because if the player chooses to have her pursue information on the kidnappings, she decides that wandering around in an old, decrepit building that she strongly suspects is the kidnapper's hideout and telling no one where she was going is a good idea. Nothing comes of it, thankfully, but it's a tense scene. Even if that was forgivable, there is absolutely no excuse in the world good enough to justify running off to face the kidnapper alone instead of calling the cops and telling them that that she knows exactly where the guy is going to be — because he told her himself! — so they can arrest him. She even decides not to bring a weapon solely because it might have gotten her weird looks or questions on the way there. Really?
  • Neverwinter Nights 2: Mask of the Betrayer: Provided you chose to proceed with the invasion of the Fugue Plane instead of defending against said invasion, Araman pulls a Last Villain Stand on you after the battle when Kelemvor has already agreed to let you try to get your soul back. Factor in that your party most likely consists of four 30th-level characters at this point.
  • Vice-Admiral Arthur Norbank in Nexus: The Jupiter Incident is a subversion of the trope. His almost complete ineptitude in all things military regularly results in huge casualties and embarrassing defeats (sometimes at the hands of an inferior force). Unfortunately, despite many players wishing it was so, he can never seem to die. There is a mission where the player has the option to rescue the thought-to-be-dead vice-admiral. Fortunately, the player can choose not to save him without any consequences. The real problem is how the Nova Command even let this guy command his own shuttle, much less entire fleets, as his only real military victory owed much to the element of surprise (the enemy were prepared to fight Technical Pacifists and never before encountered humans).
  • The civilians in PAYDAY: The Heist are quite suicidal and will usually be your source of money lost at the end of a successful heist. When a heist begins, all the civilians stand up and sometimes run around in a panic, even if they're in the crossfire during your shoot out with the police. Most people would find a place to hide and stay there or at least lie on the ground and don't move till the shooting stops, but the civilians in the game will freeze in place while the cops will gladly shoot through the civilians to hit you. You have to shout at the civilians at least 2 or 3 times to get them to stay down but they may get back up anyway to get shot by you while Bain scolds you for shooting innocents.
  • The Meat Sims in Perfect Dark have horrible aim, run past you, and will stand still in order to make it easier for you to kill them. Playing against them in the Combat Simulator is like squeezing a stress ball.
  • The titular Pikmin have a bad habit of being this, on accord of automatic AI decisions getting them into often-perilous situations.
  • Numerous Pokémon have some Too Dumb to Live behaviors. Regarding how one would expect the computer to know to pick the smartest move available when they KNOW your types, and how they always send a mon with a move effective against you... they still do some pretty stupid things. These include:
    • Pokémon using Dig, hoping you're too stupid to pick Earthquake or Magnitude.
    • Pokémon using Fly or Bounce, hoping you're too stupid to pick Stone Edge or Rock Slide and hoping Thunder misses.
    • Using Sunny Day so they can use Solarbeam, even if you have it on the currently selected Pokémon. (Does not count if it's Groudon or Kyogre, as their abilities trigger the same effects as Sunny Day and Rain Dance, respectively. The same applies to some Ninetales, some Politoed, and Mega Charizard Y.)
      • Using Sunny Day when your current Pokémon can use even a single, weak Fire-type attack. It's as if the opponent is wearing a "Kill Me With Fire" sign.
    • Using Rain Dance so they can spam Thunder, even if your currently selected Pokémon can use Thunder (or any Water-type move, for that matter).
      • Or when you're using a Water/Ground type (giving you the double advantage of getting an attack bonus from Rain Dance and being immune to Electric attacks).
    • Using Selfdestruct or Explosion when the Pokémon out currently is a Ghost-type.
      • They also do it on Rock-types or Steel-types, but they might actually inflict some damage.
      • Also, using Selfdestruct or Explosion when the Pokémon ordered to do so is the trainer's last one and their opponent still has multiple 'mons left.
    • Using Perish Song as their last Pokémon when you still have at least one other Mon conscious in your team.
    • In the Battle Tower's Multi-Battle mode, this trope occurs when your computer partner uses Earthquake and the only Pokémon affected on the field is the player's, while both of the opponents are immune to the Ground-type, whether through being Flying-type or via the ability Levitate.
    • Attacking with a barrage of Swallow, Spit Up and Fling, despite not once using Stockpile or holding an item.
    • The move Curse does something different when a Ghost-type uses it. It deals 50% maximum HP damage to the user and lays a curse (like a poison damage-over-time effect) on the opponent. Not only will Phoebe's Pokémon in Generation III and Karen's Spiritomb in Generation IV do this when they're below 50% HP (thus making the Pokémon faint), it may be seen screwing the player. That doesn't, however, excuse wild Haunter who use it... it can sometimes make catching them a bit needlessly frustrating.
      • Furthermore, in Pokémon Emerald Version, Phoebe's first Dusclops will constantly spam the move Protect until it fails, leaving the player to freely use items and non-damage-dealing (Status) moves, then go to town when Protect's PP expires.
    • Graveler seems to have specifically evolved against the will of natural selection and appears biologically programmed to explode at the sight of other Pokémon.
      • The same may also be said of Electrode, though it will at least put out a contractually obligated Thundershock or Tackle before choosing "death before dishonor."
    • Anytime the computer (or player) uses Encore (a move which forces your opponent to repeat their last move) after your opponent uses a highly damaging move.
      • Garchomp used Earthquake! Clefable used Encore!
      • It should be said, though, that in competitive play this same move would actually work very well, as the player using Clefable could then simply switch out to a team member immune to Earthquake and leave Garchomp still Encored and in a checkmate position. Of course, you have to survive said damaging move with your Encore mon, making Encore a solid example of Difficult but Awesome.
  • In the Portal universe, the entirety of Aperture Science deserves a posthumous stupidity award for empowering their AI Master Computer, who had already been proven to have murderous intentions, to release a deadly neurotoxin throughout the facility. Portal 2 explores this further by revealing that when they ran out of test subjects in the 1980s, the researchers began testing their inventions on themselves. The founder, Cave Johnson, died of respiratory problems from exposure to ground-up moon rocks.
    • Also inverted in Portal 2. A Logic Bomb that fries a bunch of robot Mooks and nearly kills GLaDOS does absolutely nothing to Wheatley. He is literally Too Dumb to Be Killed.
      GLaDOS: This. Sentence. Is. FALSE! (to self) don't think about it don't think about it...
      Wheatley: Um... TRUE. I'll go "true". Huh. That was easy. I'll be honest, I might have heard that one before, though. Sort of cheating.
      GLaDOS: It's a paradox! There IS no answer!
    • Also, during the Perpetual Testing Initiative, you encounter several alternate Caves, one of whom continually reminds the testers that they are in space every time he's on the recording. People still regularly blow through the hull searching for the big secret.
    Space!Cave: And another hull breach. Let's all give a big hand to the test subjects of sphere eighteen for briefly uncovering the company-wide conspiracy, which is that there's no air in space. Once again. We're in space. It's not a secret. I am sincerely regretting my decision not to install windows in this thing.
  • The citizens of New York in Prototype. You're driving a tank, and they think it's a good idea to run right to you.
    • That's at least partially because they have this bizarre aversion to crossing the street at any place but a designated crosswalk. Clearly whoever programmed that was not a New Yorker.
    • Practically anyone who thinks it's a good idea to go one-on-one with Alex Mercer and isn't a Super Soldier.
  • As the Punisher is ascending some stairs in the 2004 video game, a group of mafia soldiers blow themselves up while trying to set an explosive trap. The Punisher even comments something to the effect of "Gnuccis and explosives. Bad combination."
  • In Rayman Origins, most of the enemies lack any common sense.
    • In particular the Livingstones. Sure, stand in an area where a huge platform or wheel is a touch away from crushing you, or stand on an unstable platform over something dangerous. I'm sure nothing bad will ever happen.
    • The Waiter Dragons will bounce on gelatin limes into dangerous objects.
    • The Hunters. There are two types. The first type shoots blue missiles, which travel in a straight line and can be used as platforms. Since the hunter shoots the platform-missiles, they can be used to easily be used to get to the Hunter and kill it. The second type is slightly smarter, and they shoot red missiles that seek out the player. If you stand near the Hunter, the missile will kill the Hunter.
    • Rayman Legends has somewhat smarter enemies. However, some enemies just stomp on Teensies. These enemies are harmless and immobile, and therefore easily defeated.
  • After a large number of zombie outbreaks and failed business ventures resulting from said outbreaks, you'd think that Umbrella Corporation would move on to something different or at least put in stricter containment protocols, but nooooo...
  • Quite a few examples from Resident Evil:
    • In Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, the fat guy in the warehouse in the beginning of the game. His choices in this tough and horrifying Zombie Apocalypse scenario are A) risk tagging along with the highly competent and well-armed police officer and try to head for safety or B) tell said officer to go screw herself and instead try your luck hiding unarmed and alone in a shipping container in an unlocked warehouse. Guess which one he picks? Yep. Upon returning to the warehouse, you find that the shipping container has been broken into and not far outside it is the guy's lifeless corpse, being picked at by a pair of zombies.
    • In the Leon/Helena story arc for Resident Evil 6, the two hapless victims in the first chapter who are trying to call for help by waving and hollering at the security camera. What makes them stupid is that both of them are doing the hollering and waving, whereas the smart thing to do would be for one of them to check down the hallway for any danger. A horde of zombies easily sneak up behind the two idiots while their attention is focused entirely on the camera and they get devoured for their trouble.
    • Another example from 6 is the valiant but ridiculously stupid helicopter gunner from the prologue, who jumps out and buys time for Leon and Helena to run to the safety of the waiting helicopter. Oh, but they're not running from zombies or bioweapons, they're running from a wall of flame. Yeah... Shooting a wall of flame isn't going to slow it down, buddy.
    • There's also the woman who opens a shutter door trying to find her husband, ignoring the and loud banging and moaning on the other side, and gets dragged under and eaten for her trouble. And the Jerk Ass who decides he's better off on the streets of Tall Oaks than inside a fortified gun store, steals his girlfriend's weapon and runs outside to immediately and unsurprisingly get killed. There's plenty of C-List Fodder in RE 6, but several of them are impossible to feel sorry for because of how overbearingly stupid they are.
  • The guests in RollerCoaster Tycoon can be this if you're feeling cruel. Sure, let's ride that incomplete rollercoaster. What could possibly go wrong?
  • There's a minigame in RuneScape that requires you to escort people through an extremely dangerous swamp for rewards. There are 6 people, 2 being easy to escort, 2 being a medium difficulty escort and the last 2 being hard difficulty. While one of the two hard escorts seems to understand that anything other then hiding behind a rock will get her killed, the other, a rowdy and excited old man, will gladly assault the giant snakes, panther-like monsters, spirits, giant snails and the boat eating tentacle monsters, with little consideration for the fact that he's more fragile than soggy toilet paper.
  • See that big, tough-looking guy/gal clad in the crazy outfit and tattoos? The one that is followed by a legion of men and women in purple? That's the Boss of the Third Street Saints in Saints Row. He/she is also the harbinger of destruction who can survive whatever you dish out on him/her. Do you really want him/her to focus his/her entire attention on you? Many, many people throughout the series thought that was a good idea. Very few of them survived after Boss was through with them.
  • Scarface: The World is Yours averts this sometimes. The last two guys in a gang of fifty will wise up and run away... or sometimes come back. Yes, Tony Montana just shot dozens of your friends dead with a LMG. You, with your pistol, will succeed.
  • You can play as someone like this in School Days. This is a good thing, as doing so is both hilarious and leads to the bad endings that made the game (in)famous.
  • The enemy AI in Scott Pilgrim isn't smart enough to avoid obvious and fatal environmental hazards. They'll walk into pitfalls and through roaring fires without a second thought.
  • Some of the deaths in Shadowgate really show off the protagonist's stupidity. For example, the player can command him to go down a well. Rather than climb down in case the well is dry or the water is shallow, the text states that the hero dives headfirst into what ends up being a dry well.
    • "Use Sword on Self."
    • Sister game Uninvited has its own bone-headed moment, but the cake goes to the giant spider. The game outright stops you from moving to its screen three times telling you that the giant spider will kill you. Then, if you still keep trying, you move to the giant spider's area. And it kills you.
  • Nearly every single character in every Silent Hill game, player characters, villains, minor characters, and even characters who don't appear. Usually justified by them being a) trapped against their will, b) searching for someone important to them, c) completely batshit insane, or d) all of the above, and sometimes... it isn't. Special mention goes to Alex Shepard, who will stick his arm into a random hole in the wall, often leading to it being ripped off resulting in death.
  • In SimAnt, when the ants are in the house, they can walk into electrical sockets and die.
  • The Sims and Sims 2 are notorious for its less-than-intelligent behavior. The best known example is an accidental kitchen fire. Rather then flee the house, the Sims will scream and yell around the fire, occasionally then burning themselves to death.
  • The race Thraddash in Star Control 2 is so warlike they bombed their own civilization into the Stone Age. Nineteen times.
    • There's a sort of meta example with the Thraddash. You can make them your allies and have their ships built for you to use. At one point, you need to steal an artifact that's sacred to them. If you talk to them after that, they'll instantly know it was you who stole it (because it vanished after you asked to see it) and declare war on you permanently. However, if you leave their space and never talk to them ever again, they'll remain your ally and you can still build their ships perhaps because they're just too stupid/lazy to come and accuse you outside of their space.
  • The Artificial Stupidity in Star Ruler can become this if you game the system hard enough to get a massive lead on your enemies. This empire has ships that are orders of magnitude more durable, shooty and quick-accelerating than ours! Let's declare war on him! What Could Possibly Go Wrong??
  • Lampshaded in Star Trek: Borg; an early puzzle requires the player to make repairs to a console. One of the wrong choices in the situation results in the player getting a lethal electric shock, after which Q (who is masquerading as the ship's doctor) scans the player's body and apologetically tells his shipmates that the player was "just too stupid to live."
    • The entire game is this, to an extent. Because the character, a cadet utterly unqualified for the tasks he's asked to perform and you the player, who are given little information on how to proceed are basically expected to die several times only to come back and progress through trial and error.
  • Star Wars Battlefront: occasionally you'll get an AI ally who has himself as both Nemesis and Bait. Meaning not only has he managed to grenade himself, he's managed to grenade himself more often than any given enemy has managed to shoot him.
  • Super Mario Bros.
    • Bowser qualifies. Numerous times, his defeats are literally due to his own stupidity. As a character he displays even more idiocy, once setting a bomb on fire that was a few feet away from him to show how to set it off in Paper Mario 2, and not realizing that he couldn't take over the world if the world was destroyed in Super Paper Mario.
      Ganondorf: I don't know why Bowser never just stood here.
  • In Supreme Commander, an ally of your character touches an ancient alien device that is emitting a strange energy signature, in violation of a direct order from the commander in chief of the entire cybran nation. He survives, but you have to kill him and his robotic battle suit after the artifact takes over. You know it's a bad sign when the other AI characters start yelling at him, but the funny energy signature mentioned should have given it away.
  • Tales Series:
    • The people of the planet depicted in Tales of Symphonia and Tales of Phantasia suffer from this collectively. Periodically, somebody builds a massive Mana cannon that devastates the environment and frequently causes The End of the World as We Know It. As soon as the dark ages caused by its previous use are over, they get started on the next Mana Cannon, and are then astonished when it makes things worse instead of better. You'd think they'd notice the pattern after the third time or so, but no.
    • Symphonia and Abyss's characters have a common habit of keeping secrets and vital information from their fellow comrades and the player, which sometimes leads to needless injuries, deaths, and plot complications that could have been avoided.
  • This has the potential to (and often does) happen in Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World. Whenever Raine or Marta run out of TP which they NEED to be useful, they'll just charge the enemy unless you tell them to stay away from the enemy. And even if Marta's not functioning as a healer, she will spam her combat skills and waste her TP.
    • Which is lampshaded in one of the Party Chats where Emil and Marta argue about what role she even fills in the party, since she can't decide if she's going to be a bruiser or a support.
  • The Demoman in Team Fortress 2 in the fluff makes some very terrible choices. Opening an obviously possessed book after a wizard told him not to. Working with explosives while drunk. Going to battle while drunk. Attempting to blow up the Loch Ness monster as a child. It is a miracle that he has ONLY lost one eye.
    • The Ullapool Caber is this, a potato masher grenade, and the Demoman uses it by clubbing his enemies with it. The item description reads, "a sober man would throw it..."
    • The Soldier is not much better, deciding to fight the Nazis until 1949, making a bazooka out of random garbage he found, and antagonizing his roommate that also happens to be a wizard. The last two Halloween events were entirely his fault. When a time traveling Engineer tells the team to not open the robots crates, the Soldier instantly does the opposite.
    • Merasmus put many "horrors" on his wheel of fate, including taking away gravity and changing the size of characters heads. This includes making his enemies indestructible.
  • Fairies in Touhou are an entire species of this trope, pathetically weak beings that throw themselves at individuals magnitudes more powerful than them and are swiftly obliterated as a result (fortunately for them they instantly resurrect after death, but they never learn their lesson). Cirno is a stellar example, declaring herself to be "the strongest!" and acting as such, which rarely ends well for her. In Great Fairy Wars she even picked a fight with Marisa, a girl with enough firepower to level continents (that Cirno managed to actually win doesn't make her actions any less stupid).
    • Word of God states that fairies are agitated by the powerful youkai in the vicinity (that you will soon be fighting). They either try to run away, i.e., run towards you, or are just scrambling at random and fire at whatever startles them, i.e., you.
  • It's no surprise that the very similar game True Crime: New York City has civilians doing the exact same thing as above! This is the reason why it's literally impossible to do a purely good cop run without getting a single bad cop point.
  • Vagrant Story has Rosencrantz, an ex-Riskbreaker with magic immunity. Thing is, there's a reason he's an ex-Riskbreaker, and it's because he's only decent as a melee combatant, and the only reason he gets as far as he does is because he focuses most of his attention on fighting magicians who can't hurt him. Rather than keep the fact that he can't be affected by magic a secret advantage, he flaunts it to everyone who'll listen, and by the time he finally confronts Sydney, Sydney has had plenty of time to come up with a counter-strategy... in the form of giant, animated statue that promptly crushes Rosencrantz into Snob Paste.
  • Imagine for a moment that you are an officer of an Evil Empire's army, and you are in the process of invading enemy woodland territory with the intent to conquer the country. While looking for one of your wounded soldiers who has gotten separated from your group, you find that he has died of his wounds — in the company of that plucky young maverick lieutenant from the enemy side who is the only reason you haven't been sent home to your family yet, with no back-up beyond his equally plucky pigtailed girlfriend/sergeant, who currently has a busted ankle. You have your entire unit with you, ready to gun them down at any moment, and could rid yourself of the only serious obstacles in the way of your success in one fell stroke. Now imagine that you're a moron because the game has An Aesop to preach, and you let them go because now is not the designated killing time and they're obviously no threat to you at the moment.
    • Selvaria's death is framed as being a sad testament to her unrequited love for a man sending her to her demise... except the only people capable of stopping her were gone. She could have just wiped out everyone in Ghirlandaio the normal way and gone home, or, better yet, anywhere else; by that point, she could have defected and Squad 7 would have taken her in without question (mainly because nobody gives a shit about all the people she killed once Alicia becomes a Valkyria herself. She even waits for Squad 7 to get far enough away for them to escape her Final Flame, thus completely negating the worth of her sacrifice.
  • One of the endings in Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines involves siding with the local Kuei-Jin — outright alien Asian vampires that despise the Kindred as barbaric monsters and normally kill them on sight. It ends about as well as you expect.
  • In "The Walking Dead" this trope occurs in such a way that it is at first infuriating, and then possibly satisfying depending on what the player chooses to do. A woman will come screaming out of a building. In the middle of a zombie apocalypse of course. She will make so much noise that she attracts a crowd of zombies. Kenny lampshades and exploits this trope by suggesting that Lee should let her serve as a distraction for them. Lee can either let her ass be eaten, or shoot her in the head to put her out of her misery. Either way, Darwin wins again.
  • Ships in the X-Universe piloted by NPCs or Player Mooks will always take the most direct route to their destination. Even if that route goes straight through a Xenon sector and they are not equipped with a jumpdrive to hop over it with.
  • The 9th Man in Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors attempts to kidnap Clover at knifepoint to force her and Ace to open one of the doors, believing it to be his ticket off the ship. He immediately messes up after that by attempting to go through the door by himself even though Zero explicitly stated to all of the passengers that everyone who opened the door had to go through it, and is "rewarded" with a very messy death after being exploded by the bomb planted in his small intestine. While Hongou told him that the game was altered so that the bomb wouldn't go off if everyone didn't go through the door, given what Hongou has done over the years, the 9th Man would still qualify, just for listening to him.
  • Civilians in every Arcade Shooter ever. Here's a tip, people: If you're a hostage or otherwise in a building full of nasty evil things and the heroes come to rescue you, get down on the floor in full view of the rescuers and don't get up until they tell you it's all clear. Do NOT jump out from behind crates and surprise them!
    • The later House of the Dead games are actually surprisingly good at averting this. 3 and 4 simply don't have any civilians to worry about, and House Of The Dead Overkill has civilians waiting out in plain sight and clearly shouting for help instead of surprising you — they are still sometimes Too Dumb to Live in other ways, though, such as standing stock still in places where they end up blocking your shots at the mutants, or running toward hordes of them, rather than away.
  • In many games, perhaps too many to name, AI (and occasionally player) characters have the tendency to fire small arms at large, heavily armored vehicles. Word of advice, your pistol is not gonna hurt that M1 Abrams barreling down the street. (Does not apply to Halo, though, where just about any weapon can harm a vehicle and/or it's driver.)
    • On the subject of Halo. It's worth pointing out that in a peculiar inversion of this, even a year after Halo: Reach was released, players still can't figure out that their weapons (DMRs, Sniper Rifles) can damage vehicles. Allowing enemy Warthogs or Banshees to wreak havoc while they wander around looking for a Rocket Launcher. While this fact has been present in every Halo game, it is most obvious and visible in Reach.
    • Even further back, still. 4 years after Halo 3 came out, and people still don't realize that bubble shields do not protect you from oncoming vehicles.
  • Just about every protagonist in any adventure game ever created can be ordered to do some pretty stupid things. Look at many "Ways to die" videos on YouTube to see some characters doing some... really really dumb stuff. (Like drinking a pot full of salt water in the desert, saying "Hello" to a sleeping bandit, stuffing a lockpick up your nose, microwaving radioactive pool water...)''
  • Nearly all NPCs in any game that allows and encourages stealth kills. When you have a brand new arrow sticking into the back of your head then maybe, just maybe, "It must of been nothing" might not be a good answer.
  • Pretty much every target of an Escort Mission ever. Taking the longer but safer route? Nah, lets take the way through the heavily populated monster village!
    • Ace Combat 5: The Unsung War has an inversion: There is a time limit on how long you have for your convoy to reach the target area; it's the player's choice at each crossroad whether to take the short path or the long path, and the shorter paths have more enemies.
    • Another variation is if the escortee is combat-capable but lacks target prioritization: see Oda Nobunaga in Samurai Warriors (Battle of Honnouji, Oda side while not playing as him), or Gilthares Fairbough in World of Warcraft (in the Horde-exclusive "Free from the Hold" quest) for their tendency to fight whoever they come across, no matter how inconsequential the enemy or how far it would diverge them from their path.
    • Inverted in Dynasty Warriors 6 (PS2 version) if you're playing the Battle of Chang Ban as Wei... part of the Fake Difficulty comes from the fact that Liu Bei does prioritize fleeing due to his many civilian followers; that's the whole point of the mission for both sides.

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