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Captain Obvious / Tabletop Games

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All examples found in games with physical equipment, played generally on top of a table but occasionally on the floor, are here!

  • Canonically, this is the result of a Critical Failure on your diagnostics check in BattleTech, particularly in the RPG version called Mechwarrior. If your Tech flubs their roll when asked to assess damage, the best estimates they manage to make are blindingly obvious statements that are immediately apparent to anyone with functional eyes.
    Uh, well, the head is blown off.
  • CthulhuTech's description for having a low "Support Weapons" skill: "Support Weapons make bigger explosions than other weapons and you think that's cool."
    • Which is actually a very useful description showing that low skill in a given area may include not only lack of aptitude but also limited, short-incomplete or even false perceptions. In the case quoted, the skill of providing tactical support is limited to knowledge of Gatling Good and More Dakka tropes.
  • The 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual has an example where it requires a DC20 Knowledge (nature) check to learn that bears attack with their claws. This became subject to Memetic Mutation among players.
  • Magic: The Gathering
    • The card Duh from the joke set Unhinged invokes this trope. (Reminder text is any italicized text in parentheses that explains rules you already know.)
    • The card Fat Ass, which gained additional Power if you were eating, had reminder text that defined eating. ("Food is in your mouth and you are biting, chewing, licking or swallowing it.")
  • The Star Wreck RPG has "State the Obvious" as a special ability. Most of the time it isn't very helpful but if the rest of the group Failed a Spot Check it provides a huge bonus. Given that this is "Paranoia: THE SPACE OPERA" this translates to a 25% chance.
  • An old roleplaying story from a Vampire: The Masquerade game has the players trying to put together a plan to defend against an impending attack by the violent Sabbat. One player, pleased with his insight, says, "If I know the Sabbat, when they come, they'll come at night." Everyone just stares at him until somebody breaks character and replies "Of course they'll come at night. They're vampires."