Four batshit insane grunts take on the undead hordes of the Axis. Or replace the grunts with four historical figures from the 1960s, four horror-genre celebrities, four oddball civilians, or four gangsters from the 1930s who somehow managed to survive the apocalypse, possibly less insane but still pretty Crazy Awesome.A bonus mode in Call of Duty: World at War and a standalone iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad game where you originally play as one of four silent US soldiers holed up in a wrecked base near an airfield, it eventually turns through Downloadable Content into... a somewhat-better-explained plotless series of American (and later, Soviet, Japanese, and Nazi) soldiers massacring the undead 'til they join their ranks.Call of Duty: Black Ops, the successor to World at War, includes Zombie Mode, a direct sequel to Nazi Zombies. The Hardened and Prestige editions of the game come with the four original maps from World at War. The first new map revealed features John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Robert McNamara and Fidel Castro fighting an outbreak in the Pentagon. Cue the rejoicing. The subsequent maps continue the tale of the WW2 zombie fighters, as well as another tale featuring Sarah Michelle Gellar, Danny Trejo, Robert Englund and Michael Rooker fighting another outbreak, this time out in an abandoned Siberian outpost, where they were filming a zombie movie. The final Black Ops map in the Nazi Zombie saga, released in the "Rezurrection" Map Pack, is called Moon. It should be no surprise where it takes place.The next game, Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, also features this. Five maps were created during the lifespan of Black Ops II: Tran Zit (the biggest map to date and the setting for the new campaign mode, also containing the five Survival maps)the 1960's "apocalypse of the future", Nuketown Zombies, the Chinese skyscraper zombcaper, Die Rise, the mysterious Alcatraz island, Mob of the Dead, and an underground western town in Angola, Buried. The final map in Black Ops II is called Origins, and it features the original characters from World at War and Black Ops, takes place in World War I, and contains three giant fucking robots as map elements.Zombies return in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare as DLC, making it the first non-Treyarch game (Advanced Warfare was developed by Sledgehammer Games) to contain the mode, as well as the first time the mode is not available by launch. However, as Advanced Warfare and the Black Ops series have different continuities, the zombies now have different origins. They are now an Alternate Continuity result of the bio-weapon Manticore and can be optionally fought in the Exo Survival mode's Riot map, serving as a teaser.Endorsed by Hayley Williams.
After the End: The setting of Zombies in Black Ops II, as a result of Richtofen's Grand Plan in "Moon".
All-Star Cast: Call of the Dead features Robert Englund, Danny Trejo, Sarah Michelle Gellar, and Micheal Rooker.
All Just a Dream:The final map, Origins, reveal that all this was imagined by two kids fooling around with action figures.
Or Was It a Dream?: Dialogue implies Samantha's father is still a mad scientist who "has a plan for all of us", and judging from the sirens, it's implied to take place during World War 2, during an air raid.
Also for the music. Elena Siegman doesn't sing Carrion for Tranzit, being replaced by Clark S. Nova. However, this might symbolize Richtofen having control over the zombies, not Samantha.
Mob of the Dead replaces the new characters with prisoner gangsters on Alcatraz. Even the zombies are completely different, with red eyes. And the Easter Egg ends with some of the characters dying, complete with a Game Over screen.
The original Black Ops replaced the original characters with real-life Cold War figures for Five, and celebrities for Call of the Dead.
Apocalyptic Log: Radio transmissions in Shi no Numa, experiment records in Der Riese and film reels in Kino Der Toten. When you play by yourself in Kino der Toten, you hear Richtofen making one last note before they're transported to the theatre during the loading screen.
This occurs even more so in, Die Rise. Hidden televisions allow you to hear what just has been going on outside the world... and it is not pretty.
Artifact Title: By Black Ops, it's safe to say that the zombies aren't Nazis anymore.
"Beware the Doc" and "Teddy is a liar" for Richtofen's arc
"Letting go" first shows up in Mob of the Dead and remains a theme for the final three maps. A savvy fan decoded a cypher on the lyric video of "Where Are We Going" that further points to this phrase: "Let go and the beginning will become the end."
Ascended Fanfic: One of the most popular custom gamemodes in previous multiplayer COD (or just about any other first person shooter) was/is "zombie mode" or some variation of it. So much so that it led Treyarch to simply include it as a factory gamemode.
Badass: "Tank Dempsey gnawed through his bamboo cage, then gnawed his way through his captors, armed only with a Medal Of Honor that he keeps secreted in various orifices."
Nikolai Belinski's only reason why he's fighting zombies? He scared the living shit out of Josef Stalin and promptly got sent to the front lines. And that was just from shaking hands with him.
Everyone in Tranzit/Green Run, who managed to survive missiles to the Earth that caused lava flows and toxic gas.
Hell, let's just say every playable character.
Badass Boast: More or less all of the characters do this in-game.
Richtofen, especially, has one in his theme song for Tranzit, Carrion.
Lyrics: "I was spawned from eternal night, by infernal right, and I need your carrion. Neurons fire when I violate, pupils dilate, and I feel your carrion. I bring doom and defile light, your entire life, will now cease to carry on! I've returned and I'm not alone, never to atone, and forever carry on."
Badass Bookworm: Robert McNamara, who often makes accounting jokes while slaughtering zombies.
Same goes for Marlton in Black Ops II, seeing as he's a bespectacled nerd who still manages to slay zombies with the best of them.
Back-to-Back Badasses: A variation in an early trailer advertising Nacht der Untoten, it ended with four nameless American soldiers putting their backs together to cover all angles from the approaching zombies.
BFG: Excluding the already massive machine guns that you can hip-fire, the Wunderwaffe and the Thundergun.
The Jet Gun may not function as well as the Wunderwaffe and Thundergun, but good lord is it big.
Subverted in "Der Riese", where the starting pistol (the weakest gun in the game) becomes a portable, concealable Grenade Launcher when upgraded.
Introduced first as a power-up in 'FIVE' is the Death Machine, which is the crown jewel of BFGs as it is a fricking minigun!
And you can upgrade it too! It becomes the Meat Grinder and holds 550 rounds per 'magazine'... More Dakka anyone?
The Paralyser. A gun so big, you can't aim down sights with it (The Thundergun and Jet Gun also cannot aim down sights.) And it is very useful.
Boom, Headshot: Not necessary, but gains you the most points (other than knifing - and since zombies will kill you in one or two hits, and knifing zombies can take up to five swings, this isn't recommended) and uses less ammo. However, on the later rounds, people care less about headshots and more on staying alive.
However, headshot damage multipliers still help with the staying alive bit.
Characters will often brag aloud about their headshots.
One of the Perk-A-Cola machines (Deadshot Daiquiri) gives you a perk that adjusts your quick aim to the head instead of the chest.
As of Tranzit, it is possible to gain a 'persistent perk' that increases the power of headshots.
Bond One-Liner: All the time. Nikolai makes shitty ones all the time, and then gets a bit confused on the aspect of it being after a kill.
"You are dead now! But you were dead before! Ah, fuck you!"
Nikolai again, in Black Ops: "Do you know how to say 'own' in Russian? OWNT!
Nikolai also seems fairly adept at rhyming: "Nikolai cannot die! Hey, that rhymes!"
Cerebus Syndrome: The intel in Black Ops reveals that Dempsey and company were guinea pigs for the virus, but instead of turning into zombies, they got stronger and healthier, but were inflicted with Laser-Guided Amnesia.
For the Evulz: Word of God confirmed that Richtofen is Edward from the messages and he lacks the aforementioned amnesia, and he's the one who infected them.
Character Development: Later in a match, especially on Der Riese, the characters will insult each other less and yell about trying to help each other more.
Character Development can also be applied to nearly every map, as we learn more about the characters and their backgrounds through more quotes and radio messages.
Darker and Edgier: Black Ops II is not as fun as the previous maps. There are still some wonderful one liners, but in general, many of the situations in the game are not Played for Laughs.
And topping off this trope is Mob of the Dead, the darkest map in the series, with very, very few lines Played for Laughs. In this map, we also have straight up criminals instead of jerkasses and soldiers as protagonists, including Billy Handsome and Sal DeLuca.
Buried is incredibly dreary and solemn. It's clear the crew has gone through hell to get here and they spend the entirety of the map in dark, tight spaces, following the orders of unseen people in the hopes of saving the world. No matter who you help, it's heavily implied the four are killed regardless. Either Richtofen has the world as a plaything, only to be trapped in Samuel's body, or Maxis destroys the Earth for nothing. Even the Easter egg song, "Always Running" is far and away the saddest song.
Origins has the original four back, but not the crazy schizophrenic Richtofen, Comically Serious Takeo, crass drunk Nikolai, or Blood Knight Dempsey. Instead, we have a very solemn battle to save Samantha from Agartha.
(on Moon) "Such explosive power in my hands! No dirty thoughts, Dempsey."
(getting a Shotgun) "Hey! Who wants to try out my new boom-dick!?"
And then we have this little gem from Call of the Dead's easter egg:
Dempsey (to Richtofen after getting the last item): "Kinda sick of me to ask this, but Richtofen, is that a rod in your pocket?"
Downer Ending/The Bad Guy Wins at the end of Buried, which is the last map before Origins, players have the choice of either siding with Maxis or Richtofen. If Maxis wins, he banishes Richtofen from the Aether and uses his powers to open a rift to Agartha, which will destroy Earth in the process. If Richtofen wins, he destroys Maxis' soul, possesses one of the characters, gains full control over the Aether, and uses it to turn the Earth into his personal playground.
Drop the Hammer: George Romero (seriously) uses a giant hammer made out of a stage light.
"Friends, neighbors, ladies, gentlemen, if you're feelin' underpowered, I'll help you make amends. Just stick your weapon in the slot, and let it change your luck. Few things in life are guaranteed, but I promise this won't suck Punch your fists into the air and raise a rebel yell! There's lots of bad 'uns out there you need to send to hell! With Pack-A-Punch, I have a hunch, all your problems will be gone, but if you end up on the ground, sing a country western song. Pack-A-Punch (Everybody)! Pack-A-Punch (Yee-haa)! Pack-A-Punch! Pack-A-Punch! Pack-A-Punch (Everybody)! Pack-A-Punch! Pack-A-Punch(YEE-HAA!!!)Pack-A-Punch (WAA-HHAAAW)!"
Most of the Perk-A-Cola machines account for this, too.
Nacht der Untoten: In the Help room there's a radio that, if knifed or shot at, will play music from the campaign. In the Black Ops version, destroying all the barrels causes a new song called "Undone" to start playing.
As does Kino der Toten, which also includes the full version of "115" (the song that plays on the game over screen of Der Riese).
Five has three telephones that play Eminem's "Won't Back Down".
Moon probably has the grand daddy of all Easter Eggs. After following a rather elaborate set of instructions, you set off Richtofen's Grand Scheme (with the help of Dr. Maxis for the second part). YOU BLOW UP THE EARTH! If you go back to No Man's Land/Area 51 after that, it's essentially a wasteland.
Buried has two different endings: Richtofen's side, where Richtofen causes Dr. Maxis to simply cease to exist, and then joins a character in their body, or Dr. Maxis' side, where Maxis throws Richtofen out of his spot as the "Demonic Announcer" and then starts to destroy the Earth to get his daughter Samantha back.
In short there are three types of Easter Eggs per map: Radios that serve as the backstory for Group 935 and their research along with the above listed music and major Easter Eggs that affect gameplay and the storyline.
Easy-Mode Mockery: In easy mode of Black Ops II, all Easter Eggs are disabled, save for the musical ones. These things can only be done on Original difficulty.
Subverted in Mob of the Dead, if you carry out the Easter Egg to completion.
And again in Origins.
Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Well, except for Shi no Numa and Five, which are Japanese zombies and zombified White House/CIA/American zombies. It's now simply Zombies Mode in Black Ops and the iOS ports, due to the fact you don't fight just Nazis anymore.
Maxis vs. Richtofen, where the former wants to destroy the Earth, and free Samantha, and the latter wants to heal the Earth, and make it his own plaything, making the lives of whoever is still alive, complete hell. Either way, the result is crappy.
Face-Heel Turn: Richtofen in Moon, not that he was good to begin with, what with attempting to kill his partner, Dr. Maxis, and his daughter, Samantha Maxis, before the events in Der Riese, and brainwashing the other characters and using them as experiments, among other things.
Dr. Maxis pulls one in the Buried easter egg, by becoming the announcer and planning to destroy the world.
Feel No Pain: Zombies, being zombies, do not react in pain to the weaponry that hit or dismember them - they keep coming unless they die. They'll even generally crawl after you if you've knocked their legs off.
Fire-Forged Friends: Well, not friends, but as they are under increasingly serious attack, the characters will act more like a team. (At least they say they will. Whether they do or not is up to the players.)
Foreshadowing: Everywhere. For some notable examples:
The fly trap easter egg in Der Riese feels like a horror movie where you communicate with an unseen demonic force. Come Moon, it's revealed that's exactly what you're doing: whoever's soul is within an alien device is taken to another dimension, the Aether, where they can control the Zombies. Richtofen knew this all along and only in Der Riese did he realize it was all just a game to Samantha.
On the Wii version of Kino, one can find a very poor quality video clip revolving around the Great Leap Forwardnote an incredibly crude effort implemented by Mao Zedong to boost China's prosperity by having everyone work themselves to death trying to make steel for the country - which resulted in an even bigger economic loss and the deaths of millions of people. In Black Ops II, the first DLC map is in a location called "Great Leap Forward" in Shanghai, China.
Takeo muses in Ascension that the zombies are the greater threat than Richtofen and resolves to focus on the former. In a way, he's right: whatever force controls the Zombies and is the source of power behind whoever is the Demonic Announcer is a far greater threat than Samantha, Richtofen or Maxis.
In Nacht, Der Riese, Ascension, and Shangri La, the Moon is clearly visible. You can just see a red smudge that grows more and more visible with each map. The final map of Black Ops and theWham Episode of the story takes place on the Moon.
In Shangri La, Takeo and Dempsey both realize Richtofen is up to something big. Turns out in Moon, everything so far has been a part of his grand scheme to take over the Zombies.
Some of the survivors of Black Ops II seem to realize Maxis intends to destroy the Earth, although considering all the insanity and hysteria of the apocalypse, the player probably didn't take them too seriously. They should have.
The translated cypher on the lyric video for "Where Are We Going" - "Let go and the beginning will become the end." - revealed what the final map would be like - a return to the original six major characters during the first zombie outbreak, which (for now at least) seems to wrap up the story and has the characters finally reaching the fabled [[spoiler: Agartha.
Gambit Roulette: Richtofen used the group to help him find Samantha so he could switch bodies with her and gain control of the zombies.
Dr.Maxis had a counter plan. Not only being hinted at still being alive, he had recordings instructing the party how to weaken Rictofen. That was the destruction of the Earth's atmosphere, essentially loosening Rictofen's control over the zombies on Earth.
Griefer: Actually encouraged in a game mode called Grief, where two teams must compete to win, despite being technically co-operative. You have actively sabotage the other team to survive, as you can't directly attack the opponents.
1. Using an EMP Grenade while you're using the Mystery Box. It cancels the spin and you don't get your points back!
2. Using said EMP, however now on the Pack-A-Punch not only powers it off, but will get rid of whatever gun was in it. Massive trolling.
3. Blocking you from using the Bus by blocking the doors. Good luck running through the fog with no idea where to go with those bloody denizins coming after you...
"Groundhog Day" Loop: Important to the Mob of the Dead map's storyline. The four mobsters intended to escape Alcatraz using a plane constructed by Weasel, but infighting caused Sal, Billy and Finn to turn on the former and kill him on the prison roof; a crime for which they would be exectued via electric chair. They ended up in the Afterlife, where they attempt to recreate their escape while fighting zombies. Save for Weasel, the mobsters cannot recall what exactly happened, but regain their memories (if the map's Easter Egg is performed), in which case, they kill Weasel and die once more, repeating the cycle. The cycle can be broken if Weasel successfully defeats the others, at which point he is freed from his repeated deaths.
Guns Akimbo: When you upgrade your pistol, you'll gain two of them. They both spit out grenades. Nixon also wields two shotguns in the intro to the first Black Ops Zombies map.
Again in Moon, where the Wonder Weapon Wave Gun can be taken apart on a whim to become a dual wield shock gun.
Ritchofen:"Double the pleasure, double the pain, double the DAMAGE!""
Ghostapo: This is what happens when you expose alien metals to undead Axis soldiers.
Healing Shiv: A literal example in the form of the Pack-A-Punched Ballistic Knife, the Krauss Refibrillator. You can revive downed players by stabbing or shooting the blade at them.
Hellhole Prison: Mob of the Dead's Alcatraz is portrayed as this, showing massive amounts of decay, shoddy repair, and overrun with zombies covered in razor wire, and impaled with chunks of wood. Though considering that this is while the group is in purgatory, it's understandable.
Heroic Mime: The soldiers in Nacht der Untoten. Thankfully, the other levels avert this completely.
Slowly gets subverted the higher the round number due to the zombies getting more health every round. The subversion is why the Bowie Knife was introduced in Der Riese, and THAT gets subverted after a while.
And then the Thundergun in Kino der Toten, which is always a one hit kill. And then the Winter's Howl on Five, and they get subverted eventually, too! But that's only due to ammunition reasons.
Then there's the Wave Gun in Moon, which follows the Thundergun in being a one hit kill. But not only that, but it can be taken apart to make a dual wield version that is also a one hit kill!
The pistol inside the bus in Tranzit, usually one hit kills zombies with its three round bursts, costs less than most other weapons, and is available right from the start.
Probably the king of all these weapons is the Sliquifier from Die Rise. Originally thought by the fans as an absolutely terrible new Wonder Weapon, the Sliquifier has proven that it is the greatest Wonder Weapon yet. There's a video in which a player kills 91 zombies in a single shot.
In Tranzit, the superweapon was a Jet Gun that worked on a cooldown and shredded zombies to bits. It wasn't that great. With the release of Buried, we receive the Paralyzer. Insanely quick cooldown, slows zombies to a halt and kills them in seconds, massive range, and you can fly in the air with it? Sign me up!
To be fair, the plan was to stop Richtofen from controlling the zombies by killing them all with the nuclear missiles. It fails, and Richtofen is canonically the new narrator for the Zombies mode in Black Ops 2.
It also seems like Doctor Maxis has some plans of his own after nuking the Earth, so this might have been necessary.
Interactive Narrator: All the 1940's characters can hear the Demonic Announcer. Leading to these lovely exchanges:
Kill It with Fire: Flamethrower + Nazi Zombies = Good times, but Flamethrowers are useless unless someone's got the Insta-Kill power-up.
Flamethrowers are useful if you have the Double Tap perk, because the increased fire rate means that the zombies burn up a lot quicker. Pack-A-Punching it adds nitrogen cooling to your flamethrower, making this much more practical.
Knife Nut: Everyone in Der Riese once they get their hands on a Bowie Knife, which looks more like a short sword.
Misty from Tranzit is a self admitted knife nut, and was a six-time knife fighting champion.
Lampshade Hanging: Some of the characters will comment on the finding of the musical Easter Eggs being just that. They'll also get pissed off every time the Mystery Box chucks up a Teddy Bear instead of a weapon.
After an explosive caused by Nikolai leaves a zombie alive, but legless, he will make a remark on how players do this to be free to run around the map and do whatever:
"Look, I just made a new pet. I'll take it for a walk for about five minutes while the rest of you dick around."
Dempsey, when out of ammo: "Hey, player! Drop the chips and get me some ammo!"
It gets more and more explicit as the DLC maps come in, with the last one hanging these after almost every power-up pickup.
Lethal Joke Weapon: The Golden Spork in Mob of the Dead. As ridiculous as this sounds, it's more lethal than the Galvaknuckles, a spork is more deadly than electric brass knuckles! Holy crap!
To specify, the Golden Spork is five times more deadly than the Galvaknuckles. Getting it requires using the acid infused Blundergat in the laundry room after mixing the spoon in the bathtub of blood. A laugh later, and go back to bathtub. Have fun using it to Curbstomp zombies.
Don't forget Nacht der Untoten, which means Night of the Undead in German, and Shi no Numa, which is Japanese for Zombie Swamp or Marsh of Death... and you fight Japanese Zombies in it. Kino der Toten in Black Ops roughly translates to Theater of the Dead, which is appropriate considering it's a Shout-Out to Inglourious Basterds.
Ascension is a Soviet rocket launch facility, complete with cosmonaut training device and zombie astro-monkeys.
Call of the Dead, combining Call of Duty and Night of the Living Dead (the latter of which was directed by George Romero, who shows up as the final boss of the level).
Mob of the Dead has 'Icarus'. A plane that is supposed to fly the Mobsters out of Alcatraz, crashes on the Golden Gate Bridge.
Buried is named for the character's situation - they have to decide to follow either Richtofen or Maxis, but they overall don't have the best of hopes anyway. No matter who they help, they all die in the underground town, unable to return to the surface.
Mood Whiplash: A lot of the musical easter eggs by Elena Siegman. Often, they change from normal singing to furious screaming in a blink. For example, in "Beauty of Annihilation":
Bring me down... WITH 7.92 AND NOIAAGGHHHHHHHHHHH!
More Dakka: Pack-a-Punching your guns in Der Riese onwards often includes a gigantic increase in firing rate. It even turns some semi-auto weapons into full-auto weapons. However, trying to compensate for a lack of accuracy in this manner will just cause your ammunition reserves to run dry.
The lack of accuracy becomes a problem because headshots in the later rounds is the only way to quickly kill a zombie.
Still, it's a widely accepted tactic to just grab the gun that spews the most powerful lead as quickly as possible, and just shoot at the zombies.
Magic Music: In Origins, gramophones and records can apparently open up entire tombs, and open portals to another dimension.
It's a huge fuckoff rifle, that has been upgraded. Would you want it penetrating you in either sense?
Nazi Nobleman: Averted in Richtofen's biography, which makes reference to this trope, saying he gained influence amongst German's high-class, but disagreed with the Nazi Party (though mostly because he considered them not evil enough). He did join the army to fulfill his sadism, however.
He was never a Nazi to begin with, Group 935 decided to assist the Nazi party to further their agenda.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: The Call of the Dead cast, unbeknownst to them. They gave the Vrill Device to Richtofen, who would use it to take control of the zombies in the Aether, and this would lead to the Earth's destruction.
No matter who the Green Run group help, they only make things worse. If Richtofen succeeds, the Earth remains as is, and Richtofen ends up trapped in Samuel's body and seems doomed to die with the other three. If Maxis succeeds, he destroys the Earth and everyone still on it. The worst part? He still fails to find Agartha..
Now all lead by ELECTRIFIED, STAGELIGHT-WIELDING, NEARLY INVINCIBLE ZOMBIE GEORGE ROMERO!
Now completely and utterly crushed by not one, not two, but THREE 1000ft tall giant robots in Origins!
Nintendo Hard: Do not play this solo, unless you feel like screaming at Treyarch for putting such a huge emphasis on headshots and making all the players Two-Hitpoint Wonders. Black Opstakes things a step further by making it much harder to hold up in one spot, introducing ankle-biting gas zombies, and nerfing the machine guns. Unless you've memorized everything and have made prayers to whatever God you believe in that you don't get too close to a zombie, you will die on a hilariously low level.
Subverted for those who know the maps. When the zombies are only following you, it is much easier to lure them into traps and things. The highest scores were recorded in single-player Zombies.
Not the Fall That Kills You: Done in Mob of the Dead, where the mobsters end up crashing into the Golden Gate Bridge support beam with their makeshift airplane and fall to the ground below, they just merely get dazed as a result. Justified, they are not in the real world, they are in purgatory.
A little purge from the giant robot and the player falls a great height in Origins, 1000 ft. They survive of course. Handwaved somewhat with this quote.
Richtofen: The initial test subjects did not survive the purge sequence, hence the addition of the velocity compensator.
Point of No Return: You can't return to the starting point in Buried without completing the Easter Egg, which admittedly not a lot of people will do. Turns out that the characters are heavily implied to be doomed to die in the underground town, and even escaping won't help them, especially if they've helped Maxis.
The Power of Rock: Well, technically, Rock wasn't even far from invented yet in 1918, but a Gramophone and some records are needed in Origins to open up specific areas, all which are very important to creating the map's wonder weapons.
Power Up Letdown: The Death Machine in some Black Ops maps can be this on later rounds when you realize that it doesn't do that much damage and makes you unable to run. And then you realize you can't buy things or revive people when you have it...
Psycho Electro: Dempsey's more... fond of the Wunderwaffe than the other characters.
Rasputinian Death: Nikolai notes the ability for a zombie to keep coming at you with arms, legs, and even a head blown off in one of his quotes.
Nikolai: "What are you? Fucking RASPUTIN?! Just die already!"
Reality Is Unrealistic: Played For Laughs in Call of the Dead. George Romero tells a real zombie to get back to hair and make up because they "don't look dead enough". Said zombie is missing his lower jaw and is very decayed.
Also in that map is an achievement called 'Perks in Spaaaaace', which is unlocked once you've had all 8 perks at some point in the game (not necessarily all at the same time)
Retcon: As of Origins, it turns out all the original survivors were fighters in World War One, and Richtofen was working for the Kaiser, instead of the backstories we'd been given.
Revolvers Are Just Better: Played straight, and subverted. The revolver is a good weapon and a good choice for early rounds... but later on, its low rate of fire and the zombies' increased health is a crippling weakness.
Completely played straight in Tranzit onwards, where the revolver Executioner is massively more powerful than most of the weapons in the box, even the Ray Gun!
And in Buried, we get a new revolver by the name of the Remington New Model Army. It's damage against the body is above average, and it has a decent reload time. However, it gets massive damage multipliers with headshots. Said multipliers rise even higher when the weapon is upgraded.
Rule of Cool: Why are you fighting as a crazed Nazi, a drunken Russian, an honor-obsessed Japanese soldier, and an even crazier American? Why are there miniature grenade launchers and electric guns? Who cares?
Alternatively, why are you fighting zombies as John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Robert McNamara and Fidel Castro in the Pentagon? I think you know exactly why.
Gets better when celebrities are thrown into the mix.
And why is Sarah Michelle wearing a sleeveless cut off shirt in the middle of Siberia?
And eventually, mobsters fighting zombies in Alcatraz.
The weapons themselves. Started from the Ray Gun and now we got cluster grenades disguised as a Russian nesting toy and a miniature black hole generating bomb along with elemental based weapons.
Running Gag: When attempting to purchase something he doesn't have enough points for, Nikolai will make references to a stripper who took his money:
Kino der Toten: Nikolai: "What?! That stripper must have stolen my money!"
Ascension: Nikolai: "That stripper DID take all my money!...bitch...."
Sequel Difficulty Spike: Black Ops 2 's zombie mode is a few orders of magnitude harder than the one in the original Black Ops, especially on Solo. Zombies get stronger and faster much earlier on, and the smaller levels and narrower corridors make it much more difficult to form zombie trains. Black Ops 's zombie mode was already more difficult than World at War 's, as each weapon had been nerfed, and machine guns were less viable.
And now the final Zombies map being produced for Black Ops has Tank, Nikolai, Takeo, and Richtofen fight zombies on a base on the surface of Earth's moon. If that isn't absurdly over the top then I don't know what is. About as over the top as the Earth blowing up.
Black Ops II has TranZit, one of the biggest Zombie Mode maps to date, featuring interconnected areas that also serve as smaller maps. The premise behind said map counts as it shows the verydestructive aftermath of Richtofen's antics in Moon.
Now we have Die Rise, which is also an incredibly large map, and expands greatly on the after affects of Moon and the conflict between Doctor Maxis and Richtofen's plans.
And after that, "Mob of the Dead." This is the largest zombies map to date, with a boss who can Shut down perks and the box
The final map, "Origins:, takes place during World War 1, in a Dieselpunk France, is the largest map to date, features a tank you can ride on, and a skyscraper-sized robot.
Serial Escalation: This secret onAscension. It requires a LOT of time and is extremely difficult to do on a regular room unless you know exactly what you're doing.
Extremely averted in Die Rise, where the beginning of a new 115-related plague and the absolute rule of Richtofen are shown.
Averted again in Buried, if you listen to Maxis, he becomes the Demonic Announcer, and tells you that he plans on destroying the Earth to be with Samantha. Listen to Richtofen, and he jumps into Stuhlinger's body.
The KSG in Origins. It still fires slugs, which gives it massive range for the weapon, and when upgraded, you have more ammo than the rest of the shotguns. Add a reflex sight, fast mag, and massive stopping power (Even better with Double Tap II) and you've got the one weapon you can use for the rest of the game.
The Starscream: Richtofen to Maxis during their time in Group 935. Maxis refuses to allow Richtofen's experiments with the teleporters to continue, convincing Richtofen to work behind his back. Eventually Richtofen decides Maxis is unfit to lead 935, especially after declining to mass-produce his prized invention, the Wunderwaffe.note Maxis had his reasons, as he truly had no intentions of giving such powerful weapons to the Third Reich, who were funding them at the time.Things probably would not have gotten so bad if Maxis had bothered to explain this to Richtofen...
Time Travel: First seen when Element 115 overloaded the teleporter in Der Riese to send our heroes to the future.
"Aah! That was too close to my hammer and sickles."
Unwitting Pawn: Dempsey, Nikolai, and Takeo as of the events during Moon.
As are the Green Run group.
Villain Song: "Not Ready To Die" appears to be Dr. Richtofen's. A number of the series' songs seem to apply to Samantha, but "115" appears to be the main one and the one the fits the trope most.
Vitriolic Best Buds: Everyone insults everyone, but they'll help them, anyway. In fact, the characters themselves are programmed with different reactions to their teammates. They each have one teammate who they are friendly and hostile to, as well as one who they do not react to at all. For example, Dempsey likes Takeo, does not react to Nikolai and hates Richtofen.