- In the flight sim A-10 Cuba!, you can eject from your plane while still in the hangar, which launches you into the ceiling and kills you instantly.
- In Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, you manage to so utterly and completely prove a man to be the real murderer that Miles Edgeworth, the last person you'd expect to hear it from, says to him "I believe the correct term is 'you fail'!"
- Animal Crossing:
- If you talk to a peppy villager in their house, they may say that they are known to burn water, which is obviously impossible.
- Sometimes, when a villager has a request to be at your house at a certain time, assuming that you don't put the game in sleep mode (automatic fail), if you are in your house at your meeting time, while they usually arrive, you may sometimes find that one minute had past your meeting time. If you talk to the villager who provided the request, they will realize their mistake about forgetting the meeting at your house. For example, a lazy villager may say he was so busy snacking that he forgot about the meeting at your house and apologizes.
- In Art of Fighting, the "Ice Pillar Smash" bonus game involves tapping the Punch button to build up strength so your hero can break a stack of four huge blocks of ice in half. Normally, failure to do this results in smashing "only" one to three of these blocks. However, if your strength is low enough, your hero will break his wrist on the blocks, complete with an Oh, Crap! face and Losing Horns. The only way to see this is to put in no effort at button mashing whatsoever.
- In Batman: Arkham City, the Joker is severely wounded from losing the boss fight of Batman: Arkham Asylum. So he and Harley Quinn escape custody to avoid a transfer to the new prison, but in the ensuing chase, they wind up breaking in to Arkham City by accident.
- Lampshaded in the "Cold, Cold Heart" expansion for Batman: Arkham Origins:"Only you two morons could manage to start a fire with an ice gun!"
- Suicides in Battlefield: Bad Company 2 will have the game declare your death an "Epic Fail".
- Many people consider the term/meme "Fail" (and by extension, "Epic Fail") to have been popularized by the game Blazing Star. If you failed to beat a boss in time, the Engrish words "You fail it! Your skill is not enough, see you next time, bye-bye!" appeared on screen, showing you how much you sucked at fighting the boss.
- Brain Dead 13 has this in Vivi's Salon. During the scene in which Fritz escapes from the spiked coffin, he puts on a spiked arm with a switch, but just as Fritz was charging at Lance, he trips over a skull.
- In games that use the BUILD Engine such as Duke Nukem 3D, Blood and Shadow Warrior, the collision detection (in the game code, not the engine) is programmed such that any entity in the void outside the playing area or otherwise embedded in a spot it shouldn't be is destroyed. This means if you stand in the wrong place, then you, the heavily-armed, one-liner-spewing badass, can be instantly killed by a simple door swinging open. Averted in the Updated Re-release Blood: Fresh Supply which simply pushes you harmlessly out of the way.
- In Crash Bandicoot, when you beat a stage, you're beat over the head with the crates you missed. In the N. Sane Trilogy Updated Re-release, Crash physically reacts to the crates, covering his head - after ten crates, he takes a knee; after twenty crates, he flops on the ground, covering his head. After 30 crates, he gives up and just lets them pummel him.
- Darkest Dungeon has a boss named the Brigand Cannon. It's a massive cannon with several brigands manning it, one of which is the Brigand Lighter, who lights it. Once lit, the cannon will fire, doing massive damage to the party... except for that rare occasion when it misfires. This does massive damage to the cannon and its support units, and it reduces your party's stress, as they take amusement (and relief) in being spared.
- In Daytona USA, on the Advanced course (Dinosaur Canyon), you can turn around at the starting bell and drive the wrong way down the track until you can go up a ramp to your right into a tunnel. Doing so takes you to a dead end with a sign that reads, "Congratulations! You just lost your sponsors!".
- Gilgamesh's EX Burst in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy. Every character's EX Burst has a perfect and failed version, with the failed version doing less damage, but Gilgamesh takes failure to its extreme. A recurring joke in the series is Gilgamesh's continued search for the legendary Excalibur, but he always confuses it with the counterfeit Excalipoor, which only ever deals 1 point of damage when it hits the opponent. In his EX Burst, the player must pick the Excalibur out from several Excalipoors. If they fail, Gilgamesh takes up one of the Excalipoors and performs a series of epic, over-the-top attacks on them... then realizes his attacks aren't doing anything and throws it away, moaning that he picked the wrong one.
Of course, thanks to a bug in the original Excalipoor, it did as much damage as the Excalibur when thrown. So when Gilgamesh's opponent is inevitably hit by the sword that Gilgamesh threw away, it hits for just enough HP damage to kill them if they were, for instance, saved from the initial HP hit by an accessory.
- Dota 2 has enough ways for players to fail horribly that it warranted its own long-running "Fails of the Week" series. Heroes that are particularly prone to this include Pudgenote , Naga Sirennote , and (for some reason) Nature's Prophet.
- Dragon Age: Origins has this toward the end of the Orzammar plot arc. If you elect Lord Pyral Harrowmont to become Limg of Orzammar, Prince Bhelen Aeducan, his rival, attempts a coup right there in the meeting chamber with all the guards and the heroes who just got through carving up a thousand Darkspawn. Needless to say, it doesn't go well for them. Afterwards, listen to the Town Crier who supports Harrowmont. He'll shout out about what happened and throw in his usual color commentary which goes like this, quoted word for word:Town Crier: News of the hour: Prince Bhelen attacks the Assembly and is ignominiously slain! EPIC FAIL!
- While that is the biggest example of Epic Fail; if Bhelen is chosen and he chooses to order Harrowmont's execution, the other town crier, who supports Bhelen, then adds Epic Fail, but it's not quite as epic.
- In Dragon Ball Z: Budokai 2 and 3, it was quite possible to get a number of these failures by screwing up the Quick Time Event when using Ultimate Attacks or Fusions. For some of the more comical ones, failing Hercule's "Present For You" will have his opponent throw the game console at Hercule as he sets off its explosive, failing Great Saiyaman's "Justice Pose" will have his opponent unimpressed and Gohan throwing a tantrum, Gotenks or Super Buu failing the "Super Ghost Kamikaze Attack" has the ghost accidentally detonate on them and the Original Generation Super Buu (Yamcha and Tien Absorbed) failing the "Spirit Ball" attack has the attack smack them in the face. This video has a good idea of what to expect.
- Drake of the 99 Dragons has a scene rather early on where Drake starts to get stronger from stolen souls, declares himself invincible...and then immediately jumps out of a penthouse window to his death.
- Dwarf Fortress has a myriad number of ways to fail (after all, Losing is Fun!) but there are a select few ways that you can Epically Fail.
- Like say, accidentally starting your fortress over a volcanonote .
- For the fans, this is actually how you succeed — since there's no actual victory in DF, the easiest win condition is to achieve a catastrophic failure that is notable in some entertaining way, then post it on the Bay 12 forums. What other games call Epic Fail, are considered awesome moments (with a heaping dose of funny) in Dwarf Fortress. Examples famous for the epic nature of their failures include the notorious "Boatmurdered".
- The current TV Tropes succession game, "Waterburned", has two examples within the first two years — creating a drowning trap that flooded half the fortress thanks to a misplaced channel, and having the military boldly sally out to a humiliating defeat — by kobolds.
- Which is nothing compared to "Drunk Fortress". It's a fortress played while completely inebriated. Do the math. Truly spectacular failures end in fortresses that are completely imploded in manners that would take sober players actual effort to achieve (such as a multi-level magma leak, reanimated severed limbs so deadly they get nicknames and dwarves teetering between life and death and unable to breath for years), with as the person responsible gazing upon a burning, wrecked landscape full of corpses and having no idea how it even happened.
- The Elder Scrolls:
- In Morrowind, the sorcerer Inwold was hired by some smugglers operating out of Palansour to summon Daedra to use as muscle. However, his Ogrim and Scamps got out of control, killed all of the smugglers, and left Inwold imprisoned in nothing but a skirt and a hat (which he offers you for freeing him.) The series has had some really terrible users of magic, but Inwold might just take the cake.
- Skyrim has killcams, where landing a killing blow on an enemy can lead to a Coup de Grâce Cutscene with a special Finishing Move. Originally, these only occurred if you were fighting in melee, but a patch introduced killcams (sans finisher) for ranged and magical attacks. Killcams are triggered when the attack you just let out will kill the enemy you're engaging with. Sounds good so far. However, it doesn't take into account whether or not your attack will actually hit. This isn't a huge deal for melee finishers, since they're guaranteed to hit, but for ranged attacks, it's entirely possible for your opponent to move after the cutscene is triggered. If that happens, you're treated with a slow-mo view of your arrow/projectile wooshing past your opponent's head and hitting a wall.
- An even worse version occurs when a killcam activates and the game switches into third-person mode, which slightly changes arrow trajectory. It's a common sight for a hidden character to launch a sneak attack on their enemy, triggering the epic slow-mo killcam... only for the arrow to harmlessly clatter off the wall in front of them, which was clearly not in the way while aiming in first person.
- Enter the Gungeon has an example of this, where the Bullet's uncle tried to "aim and fire" their ancestral weapon and nailed themselves in the head with it. The weapon in question is a sword.
- Two of EVE Online's greatest battles, the Battle of Asakai and the Battle of B-R5RB, were caused by incredible blunders — Asakai's because the person pushed the wrong button, jumping his Titan into a battlefield instead of jump bridging in his support fleet, and B-R5RB when a player forgot to pay the rent to his coalition's fortification, and it went up for grabs.
- In Fallout 3 or Fallout: New Vegas, when going into VATS mode you're given a chance to hit a target from range. You then open fire, and are treated to a cinematic view of your shots being fired. But if you're standing, say, just behind a boulder and your rifle ends up pointing at the boulder when you execute your VATS attack, you'll be treated to the sight of every single bullet you shot skipping off the rock right in front of you. Can get particularly hilarious if the enemy is standing behind some thin piece of cover like a signpost when you execute you 95% chance-to-hit shot, resulting in sending a hundred bullets downrange from your minigun, and every single shot hits the sign instead of the person standing just behind it. Or if a bystander or companion is between you and the target. Even worse is when you throw a Nuka Grenade in VATS Mode, only for it to strike an overhead obstruction and bounce back to land at your feet — VATS Mode won't end until the grenade explodes.
- In Fallout 4, sometimes a Critical Miss shot will pass right through the enemy.
- FTL: Faster Than Light allows you to fail the tutorial. Under normal circumstances this is impossible, as the demonstration enemy can't hurt you unless you turn off your shields. Other means of utter failure include opening all doors on the ship, including airlocks, or shutting off oxygen, asphyxiating the crew either way. All three of these actions are at no point necessary to complete the tutorial. Regardless of your method of suicide, the game gives you a Nonstandard Game Over, pictured above.
It's also very possible, due to the procedurally generated enemies, to die on the very first jump if you get unlucky.
- In Final Fantasy X, if the party somehow gets defeated during the tutorial section on Besaid, Lulu may point out the party's (or the player's) failure.Lulu: (if she was an active fighter upon defeat) We haven't even left the island
- Fire Emblem Fates combines this with Noodle Incident. Sophie tells Hisame that she needs his help learning how to use chopsticks properly, because the last time she tried, this somehow led to her burning her house down.
- Gran Turismo:
- Failing a licensed test results in the display of the word FAIL in big white letters, sometimes with Soundtrack Dissonance.
- An entire grid of Fiat 500F's gets stuck on the Eiger Nordwand G Trail.
- Rooster Teeth has a weekly series called Fails of the Weak, which is a compilation of the most epic failures ever captured on video for Halo: Reach.
- The Henry Stickmin Series has a ton of these. In a series that actively encourages players to collect all the fails, the commentary on the failure screen is usually a good indication of which ones are epic fails:
- Hypnospace Outlaw has an example that isn't played for laughs at all. Dylan Merchant's attempt at making a video game for Hypnospace was so badly programmed that it results in Hypnospace's BrainComputer Interface killing several users.
- In In the Groove 2, if you fail the Final Boss song, "Vertex^2", the failure screen says "Round Failed^2".
- I Wanna Be the Guy: Oh, look, a sword to collect! YOU JUMPED INTO A SWORD! YOU RETARD!
- In Karateka, you can die around one second after starting the game by entering your fighting stance and backing off the cliff behind you. You have to go out of your way to do this, since there are no enemies on screen (thus no reason for the stance) and the only other direction is forward.
You can also famously and hilariously mess up the ending if you defeat the final boss, and then forget to leave your fighting stance in the next room. This means you fight all the way into the villain's sanctum to rescue the Damsel in Distress, only to be met with a kick to the face that kills you instantly. Oops.
- This is half the fun of Kerbal Space Program. Nothing says "epic fail" like watching your rocket's thrusters become deadly missiles as they separate from your rocket or, even worse, slam into your cockpit. And then an update made the Space Center buildings themselves, meaning a rapid unplanned disassembly can now result in a surviving kerbal standing forlornly in the smoldering ruins.
- In Killzone 3, Chairman Stahl spends about half the game gloating about how Orlock is an incompetent who failed to execute Visari's killers after six months of chasing a stranded ISA guerilla force. While Stahl is correct, the fail part comes when he manages to capture the ISA, only to be attacked by Sev and Rico posing as Helghast soldiers and free the prisoners on a national broadcast. Oh, and the Senate declares Orlock the new Autarch after this, to add salt to the wound.
- In The King of Fighters 2002, Orochi Shermie has a hidden move, usable only at low health, in which she stuns her opponent with an electric burst and then calls down a bolt of lightning. Problem is, not only is the location chosen at random, but Shermie herself is not immune to it. Cue the dramatic scene of Shermie calling to the heavens, complete with a distant shot of the thunder clouds as the lightning comes down... and the all-powerful wielder of lightning being fatally struck by her own element. All while her opponent survives completely unscathed. KO!
- Kirby Super Star: When Kirby gets the Bomb ability, he immediately pulls one out. Forget to throw it? Boom. (To add insult to injury, your bombs are normally Friendly Fireproof — this is the only way they can hurt you. Also, you're given several seconds to throw the bomb, so you pretty much have to be doing this on purpose.)
- In Luigi's Mansion, Luigi gets a special house depending on how much money he collects during his adventure. It is entirely possible to beat the game with very little money, leaving you with Rank H - which gives Luigi a tent and a message stating that the haunted mansion vanished without a trace.
- In Mario Kart, Blue Shells target the current race leader. If you use a Blue Shell in first place, you will hit yourself.
- The Easy AI in every Mario Party is so stupid that players (read: Luigi) can win by doing absolutely nothing.
- Mass Effect: You would think missing at point-blank range with a shotgun would be hard. You would be reckoning without any of your allies who don't naturally have a shotgun specialisation.
- Monkey Island:
Van Helgen: ...that's odd.Guybrush: What? You like it??Van Helgen: No, no, no. It was dreadful. It's just that my queasiness has subsided... ...but now I'm beginning to taste metal and see spots before my eyes. I'm afraid that your singing is so bad that it has caused me to have a stroke.
- During one section of The Curse of Monkey Island, Guybrush can attempt to "audition" to be the 4th member of Edward Van Helgen's barbershop quartet by singing for him. Every attempt Guybrush makes is especially bad, and is chided by Van Helgen as such, until make a fifth attempt...
- Parodied in Tales of Monkey Island Chapter 3: Lair of the Leviathan: at one time when Guybrush guesses the answer to one of De Cava's three-out-of-six questions wrong, Morgan rolls her eyes and says, "Fail," in a Shout-Out to the "FAIL" meme. (Even De Cava says "Failure!" when the question is guessed wrong.) However, this trope (and imminent death) is averted as many times as possible, when De Cava will always repeat the same first series of the three questions thanks to the repeated pleadings from Guybrush.
- Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate introduces Hunters for Hire, in which you can hire 1-4 CPU-controlled versions of hunters you've met (e.g. via StreetPass) to do a quest for you, with varying odds of success. Occasionally, hired hunters will fail quests that should be trivial given their equipment, Hunter Rank, and party size, such as failing a simple "Hunt a Great Jaggi" quest (one hunter apparently hired a team of G-Rank hunters to do this, which failed anyway) or, even worse, failing a low-rank quest in which the objective is to deliver items that can be easily gathered.
- NetHack has the proud tradition of YASD, or Yet Another Stupid Death, for when you find a new and exciting way of getting yourself killed.
Salutations Lancealot, welcome to NetHack! You are a lawful male human Knight.
- It's not unusual for a beginning knight to die on their very first action:
You slip while trying to get on the saddled pony. —More—
You die... Do not pass Go. Do not collect 200 zorkmids.—More—
Lancealot, slipped while mounting a saddled pony.
- Speedrunner ais523 demonstrated that it's possible to die before taking one's first turn if the Random Number God is hostile enough. Grayswandir was generated on the upstairs, he picked it up due to autopickup, and it blasted him. He estimated the chance of this occurring at roughly one in three million.
- Most deaths in Nexus Clash are from pretty obvious causes, thanks to the titular unending Player vs Player war. However, in addition to being shot/stabbed/beaten by other player characters, there are lots of things in the game that do tiny amounts of damage and it's possible (if sometimes spectacularly unlikely) to ignominiously die of any of them. One player keeps a running tally of every one of these documented fails.
- In Paper Mario 64, there's one moment in particular that is pretty pathetic and humorous. When Mario and his friends are in the Ice Palace, Mario encounters Duplighosts, which imitate Mario and whichever member he has out. It's pretty clear which the fake is, but the most obvious moment is when multiple Duplighosts take on the wrong personages at the same time. For some reason, they are unaware of their own stupidity, especially since they were capable of doing this successfully last time.
- Papers, Please:
- Recurring entrant Jorji is first turned away from Arstotzka for not having the correct documents (or any documents at all). The second time, he tries to provide a fake passport, but the forgery is rather blatant for two reasons: the passport was drawn in crayon (quite crudely too) and it's for "Cobrastan", a country that doesn't exist in the game's universe.
A few more missing documents later, he finally shows up with all of his papers in order. The only problem is that now he's attempting to smuggle drugs across the border. Wouldn't be so bad, except that he attempts the exact same thing again a couple days later.
- One entrant attempts to enter Arstotzka with two passports that don't match. Not surprisingly, he immediately asks for both of them back. Normally you have to find a discrepancy to enable the option to detain someone, but with this guy, you can detain him without saying a word.
- A female entrant provides, instead of correct papers, a poem expressing her unquenching love for the inspector. Allowing her access because of this results in her asking for the poem back, so she can use it on the next inspector. The "detain" option immediately pops up in response.
- Recurring entrant Jorji is first turned away from Arstotzka for not having the correct documents (or any documents at all). The second time, he tries to provide a fake passport, but the forgery is rather blatant for two reasons: the passport was drawn in crayon (quite crudely too) and it's for "Cobrastan", a country that doesn't exist in the game's universe.
- In Persona 4, your character and the girls have a cook-off to make omelettes for young Nanako, but the girls prove incompetent at cooking. However, Yukiko in particular stands out. While the other girls' dishes come out dangerously spicy or just plain awful, Yukiko manages to cook an omelette that has no taste at all. How she accomplished this, we may never know. But hey, better than the
curry"Mystery Food X" that knocks out whoever eats it!Kanji: It's pretty impressive that you put so many ingredients into a dish and it came out tasting like nothing.
Yukiko: Y-Your palate just isn't refined enough!
- It is possible to commit suicide in Phantasy Star Online 2 by standing in any Zanverse field, then using the Photon Art "Maron Strike" or "Melon Strike" while standing in point blank range. This is an Action RPG where self-inflicted damage almost never happens.
- Annoying trainers in Pokémon Gold and Silver (and the remakes) will call you every once in a while...and some call to say that they failed to catch a Pidgey. Yes, a Pidgey. You have about a 33% chance of catching Pidgey that's at full strength with no status conditions and a plain old Poké Ball, yet they were trying and couldn't catch it!
- "Hitmonlee used High Jump Kick! Hitmonlee kept going and crashed! Hitmonlee fainted!" note
- "Foe Geodude used Selfdestruct! It doesn't affect Gengar... Geodude fainted!" note
- The moments when a Pokemon (wild or AI-controlled) uses a move that drags out a Pokemon which is immune to most, if not all of their moves is good for a chuckle too.
- "Enemy Weezing used Explosion! Enemy Weezing's attack missed! Enemy Weezing fainted!" note
- "Deoxys is confused! It hurt itself in its confusion! Deoxys fainted!" note
- "Shedinja used Final Gambit!" note
- Electrode used Explosion! Electrode fainted! Red is out of usable Pokémon! Red blacked out!
- In Pokemon Art Academy, every single one of your rival's drawings is this. They improve as time goes on, but only marginally.
- In LeafGreen and FireRed, after you pick your starter Pokémon, your rival challenges you to a battle immediately. It's supposed to a pushover fight, since elemental weaknesses are not yet a factornote , and your rival is almost guaranteed to use Tail Whip or Growl as a wasted turn thanks to A.I. Roulette. However, Tackle has a 5% chance to miss, and if you're incredibly unlucky, you can miss your attacks enough that you lose the battle, as demonstrated on the playthrough on Super Beard Bros.
- In the Portal universe, it is revealed that the attempts of the Aperture Science researchers to put Restraining Bolts on their AI Master Computer GLaDOS approaches the level of this trope. When they first attempted to wake her up, she went homicidally berserk within 1/14 of a picosecond. Their solution to this was to attach all sorts of personality cores to her to modify her behavior, including one that fed her a cake recipe; another that was, if anything, even more murderous than she was; and one that fed her stupid ideas to counter her intelligence. Yet after all this, they were easily suckered into giving her access to a deadly neurotoxin, with which she killed them. Their epic failure comes full circle when the aforementioned "Intelligence Dampening Sphere" ends up taking over the Enrichment Center from GLaDOS and nearly destroying it, thanks to the same built-in imperatives designed to control her.
It's best to say that Aperture Science only succeeds through epic failure. The portal gun was originally intended as a shower curtain. The acceleration and repulsion gels were intended as dietary aids, and some supplementary materials indicate that GLaDOS was originally intended to de-ice fuel lines. Nothing Aperture Science ever built functioned as intended, and they were too poorly managed to turn lemons into lemonade with what they did have. They instead took the lemons and turned them into incendiary grenades.
- In the Wii version of Quantum of Solace, it is all too possible, should you forget how to throw a grenade, to essentially pull the pin out of said grenade and stick it in your pocket. Not even kidding here.
- QWOP. Apparently, your country's Olympic training program is so underfunded that athletes in training don't even know how to walk and even just "running" ten meters by hopping and doing the splits is considered an achievement. Which leads to these things happening far more than they should:
- Walking backwards far enough to not only achieve a negative distance, but also hit the concrete wall behind you.
- Flipping 720 degrees before hitting your head on the ground.
- Falling through the ground!
- In Red Dead Redemption: Undead Nightmare, Snake Oil Salesman Nigel West Dickens tries to create and market a zombie repellant. He somehow creates zombie bait.
- Red Faction Guerilla is a game where Wreaking Havok and Everything Breaks is par for the course. Protagonist Alec Mason is Made of Iron and is a One-Man Army when it comes to Stuff Blowing Up and Dropping the Hammer. This is a person who is expected to walk into an enemy installation and come out the other side effectively having traversed a straight line. However, as noted by Yahtzee, it is possible to kill yourself by chopping away at a building's supports, with the very last sliver of plumbing holding out far longer than is proper, and having the stupid thing drop on you. It is possible for Alec Mason to kill himself with a hollow dome house this way, when three dozen infantry squads and their vehicles are so much hammer fodder.
- Resident Evil:
- From Resident Evil 4, we have this attempt to retrieve a treasure from a high place by gunshot. It fails because the player uses a rocket launcher, which causes a boulder to collapse on top of him.
- In the backstory of the Resident Evil 1 remake, it was revealed through documents that George Trevor, the architect who built Spencer Mansion and was then left trapped in it to die, got lost in the building that he personally designed as he tried to escape.
- Rune Factory 3: Failing to cook a dish that you have a 90% success rate for will result in a Super Fail. The game plays with the trope in that not only are Super Fails a favored gift for Sofia (one of your potential brides) but they're a powerful poison, that can take chunks of life off even bosses.
- Entering "Epic Fail" in Scribblenauts creates a nuclear explosion that kills everything onscreen, including the player.
- Sonic the Hedgehog:
- In the Last Story of Sonic Adventure, when Perfect Chaos starts rampaging, Dr. Eggman flies in with his Egg Carrier 2, a new version of the huge ship he piloted for most of the game. Eggman made it specifically for if Chaos went out of control like he was doing at that moment. Chaos took it down in one blast.
- In Sonic the Hedgehog 2, after defeating the boss of Chemical Plant Zone, it's very possible for a player who has let their guard down to fall through one of the tiles.
- In Sonic Unleashed, if you played so poorly that you end up with an E Ranking, you get this masterpiece playing.
- In the Space Quest series, likely half of The Many Deaths of You are Epic Fails of some kind for protagonist Roger Wilco. Probably the biggest is right at the start of Space Quest III, where attempting to pick up a piece of scrap metal lying on a ship one room away would result in Wilco cutting himself. Most people would just get a gash on their palm or finger, albeit one needing to be disinfected and bandaged. Wilco, on the other hand, manages to sever an artery and promptly dies of blood loss. Approximate playing time from start to death: 20 seconds.
A lampshade is hung in the second game, where you can follow the linear plot and avoid the stupid deaths enough to land on the surface of Labion, walk one screen easy to an otherwise useless screen, and get eaten by a giant mushroom. After you die, the narrator will point out that he made a bet that you, as the player, would last longer than that, and implore you not to make him look like an idiot, too.
- Spelunky's pseudo-random level generator coupled with its extremely roguelike style of platforming often leads to over-the-top, awesomely funny, accidental deaths caused by careless or unlucky players.
For example, in the first major area of the caves, it is possible to misjudge a fall and stun yourself on impact with the ground, triggering an ancient arrow trap and alerting a bat in the process. As you lay there stunned, the arrow bounces off a nearby wall and hits you, the force of the impact flinging you to a nearby overhang. The bat then hits you, the impact pushing you off...onto a bed of spikes. Granted, the bat is what actually kills you in this example; the spikes just add insult to injury.
- Splatoon 2 has a new weapon class called the Dualies, which has the player shoot ink out the "magazine" in order to dodge roll; the ink mechanics in the game make it so there is no such thing as friendly fire. Despite all of this, Pearl still manages to splat herself in this exact fashion.
- StarCraft II: Not with the game itself but for a piece of hardware designed specifically for the game, Steel Series released a StarCraft II-themed keyboard, only they misspelt "protoss".
- Star Trek Online has its "Duty Officer System", which allows you to send Red Shirts to do boring jobs around the ship and elsewhere. It's not uncommon to see them come back injured or killed, though you have to question their competence when they get injured doing something harmless like scanning particles. It's probably why one of the options for the Klingon characters is listed as "Execute Officers for Incompetence".
- Street Fighter IV: Ryu's attacks can be used to cancel and punish anyone and anything from Raging Demons to Shinryukens... unless your name is Hugo (from Final Fight) and you plow through those punishing attacks.
- Likewise, Akuma's Raging Demon is a fearsome attack, able to kill a man with his own sins. What can stop such a unstoppable attack? Dan Hibiki's Otoko Michi and Shisso Buraiken attacks, the first of which being a knockoff of Raging Demon itself.
- Dan Hibiki in general takes epic failing to such an art form that he becomes a Lethal Joke Character.
- Star Wars: Battlefront: the game tracks Nemesis, for who killed you the most, and Bait, for who you killed the most. Also, there is no Friendly Fireproof here, meaning that you can occasionally kill yourself with a bad grenade toss. The awesome failure comes when a unit is listed as its own Nemesis and Bait. Meaning he committed grenade-related suicide more often than he killed anyone else.
- In Super Mario Galaxy 2, during The Perfect Run, it is entirely possible to fall off the edge of the planet where the Star is. Yes, really. Not the area where the Star appeared in The Ultimate Test, but a completely separate planet with no real hazards whatsoever. There is no possible reasonable explanation for why you'd do this.
- Super Smash Bros.:
- The infamous Brawl video wherein Fox jumps up in the air, then comes down in a Landmaster, which promptly falls through the tiny hole in the center of the Yoshi's Island (Melee) stage.
- Sometimes when fighting the Ice Climbers, killing Popo but leaving Nana alive results in Nana smashing you off the stage by herself. Especially funny when it happens on the last stock, netting Ice Climbers the victory.
- When demonstrating how Lucario's aura was buffed for WiiU/3DS compared to Brawl, Sakurai demonstrates a potential downside to it by having Lucario use his Up-Special and flying away from the lower blast zone on one side of the stage, over the platform, and landing in the lower blast zone on the other side of the stage.
- A fully charged Wario Waft is one of the strongest moves in the game. However, it also possesses a unique property in that Wario is able to KO himself with it if he flies off the top of screen as a result of its upwards propulsion. It's all too possible to land a decisive blow and simultaneously KO yourself in the process if you aren't careful with it.
- Tales of Symphonia has the cooking mechanic. Every recipe has a chance of failing. The first recipe in the game is for a Sandwich. Which leads to a wonderful post-battle message that reads Failed at making a Sandwich.
- This is especially heinous/hilarious with Raine, who only uses the most basic ingredients to cook anything. All that Sandwiches require in this game is bread. Raine can fail at serving bread.
- Team Fortress 2: Lose an Arena round without killing a single opponent, and you get the message "FLAWLESS DEFEAT!"The Administrator: "You didn't kill any of them!" "...next time, try killing one of them."
The Administrator: "Do not all die at once!"
- It's also possible to total party wipe in Mann vs. Machine mode, at which point the Administrator is also most displeased.
- In the Replay Update of Team Fortress 2, a contest called the Saxxy Awards was created to share with people their most awesome kills, biggest dominations, and of course, most epic fails. All the lovely fails can be found here.
- The winner was a Soldier who wanted to show off and destroy an enemy dispenser using a taunt kill, but the Engineer moves the dispenser before he can finish the taunt. What makes this an Epic Fail is that said taunt kills the Soldier as well as whoever's standing by, and unfortunately, no one's standing by. You can probably guess what happened.
- In the Total War games:
- When an assassin, spy, gentleman, or ninja fails in a mission, the video of their attempt shows them attempting and then failing in some hilarious fashion. Sometimes it's an amusing or unfortunate error, like stabbing the shadow of a kneeling samurai but just hitting his armor stand, or getting caught trying to set a house on fire. Other times, the failure will be something hilariously epic. For example, a gentleman engaging in a duel, but his weapon misfires, and while investigating the faulty pistol, he ends up shooting himself in the face. Or an assassin waiting behind a door to stab a target, only to end up stabbing himself when the target slams the door into his face.
- Total War: Shogun 2 has a failure animation for a Ninja assassination. Ninja sneaks inside a castle perched high up on a cliff. Ninja finds target looking out over a balcony over said cliff. Ninja takes a run up to attempt a flying kick at the target's head to force him over the balcony. Target ducks.
- Touhou Koumakyou: Embodiment of Scarlet Devil has Cirno's "Icicle Fall" spellcard on Easy, which has a blatant blind spot directly in front of her. Even the Stage 1 boss, Rumia, doesn't bear the same kind of stupidity.
- In Undertale, Undyne's cooking attempts often turn into this. The one time the player sees her cook, Undyne gets so Hot-Blooded about making spaghetti that she burns her house down. It goes Up to Eleven in a possible phone call with her and Papyrus: not only has Undyne burning her house down from cooking happened before, she once managed to do this while cooking popsicles.
- Reportedly, it is possible in the XCOM Spiritual Successor games UFO: After* to throw a grenade so poorly that it lands yards behind your thrower. Without bouncing. Hell, that's not too far a stretch from the abysmal soldier stats of X-COM proper.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh! Reshef of Destruction, when dueling Bandit Keith, he can and will tribute three monsters to summon the Winged Dragon of Ra... in Sphere Mode. A Divine Monster with 0 Attack and Defense. Even worse, a Divine Monster cannot defeat any other monster using the Attribute advantage house rules, making it completely worthless. This is even funnier if beforehand, his monsters had been defeating you.
- In Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune, if you're playing Story Mode or Versus Mode your opponent is less than 700 meters from the goal and is so far ahead of you, the "Keep Going!" alert that shows up at this point doesn't even show up. In other words, you've screwed up so badly that the game implicity tells you that you should just give up all hope of winning.note
- Warhawk features this as a Have a Nice Death Game Over screen, wherein the Big Bad, Kreel, laughs at your deaths while eating a meal, only to choke on a chicken bone and die. In a roundabout way, you saved the world from Kreel, even if you lost the game.
- World of Tanks:
- It takes a fair bit of effort for a fairly zippy Hellcat to get encircled and outflanked in a pincer movement by a slow-as-dirt TOG II, but it is both possible and hilarious.
- Anytime someone doesn't know the map very well or doesn't watch where they're driving, incompetence will make itself known. Most notably, players accidentally driving into deep lakes or along roads that lead them off cliffs at full speed, leading to the amusing spectacle of a (briefly) airborne light tank.
- Some vehicles specialize in firing high explosive rounds, mostly anything that packs a howitzer. It's possible to fire the weapon at an enemy that's next to you and kill yourself because of Splash Damage and the Glass Cannon nature of many howitzer-packing machines.
- Players who forget the relative weights of tanks and try to ram something bigger than themselves will often end up suiciding on the heavier hull of an opponent while merely dealing Scratch Damage to their victim. Incredibly hilarious when a string of light vehicles do this on a single hugely heavy target.
- The Erlenberg map provides numerous opportunities for players on both sides to screw up in amazing ways (mostly involving stupidity near water) and has become known as Derpenberg.
- Posted on the old World of Warcraft forums in a 'what was your most epic death' thread:I am a warlock.
I am undead.
I drowned. note
- A relative of World of Tanks is World of Warships, and it should come as no surprise that some embarrassing failures have come out of this game as well. Inherently foolish mistakes like ramming larger craft with smaller ones happen, but the kicker probably has to be this battle between an intact tier 4 aircraft carrier versus a sub-optimal, badly battered tier 3 destroyer. The carrier manages to lose the encounter... by torpedoing himself with his own bombers while trying to sink the destroyer.
- Worms gives players the chance to mess up so spectacularly, [[https://www.youtube.com/watch? Wev=AP_0PDUEnVE they can compile their most hilarious fails into a conga of comical chew-ups]].
- This is the mainstay of every fail moment videos in Dota2, Hearthstone, and practically any multiplayer games out there. Especially Hearthstone, as the Random Number God there can utterly screw you, with Doomsayer as its favored harbinger.
- In early versions of F/A-18 Hornet, before even leaving the tarmac, you could drop a bomb and blow your own plane up, or worse, nuke the whole airbase.
Epic Fail / Video Games