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  • In Don't Starve, Wilson (a gentleman scientist who is suffering from lack of inspiration) receives a strange message through his phonograph which instructs him to construct a magical portal to the hellscape of the Don't Starve universe.
  • The backstory of Neverwinter Nights 2 reveals that the ancient civilization which used to rule the region was working on an ultimate magic ritual which would take one of their greatest champions and turn him into the perfect guardian to protect the nation. In addition to great power, this process would also seal his personality and replace it entirely with single-minded devotion to duty. Unfortunately, the resulting King of Shadows was rather.... uncompromising as a result. It now interprets just about everything as a potential threat, even long after the country's destruction.
  • In Outlast, the Murkoff Corporation's goal is to force one of the Mount Massive Asylum patients to undergo enough pain and witness enough horror to trigger the "Morphogenic Engine," a biological algorithm that allows the cells in the human body to produce an incredibly strong swarm of Nanomachines, that could then be directed by the human host to attack and kill anything. They succeed, but patient Billy Hope, having not only pre-existing mental problems that landed him in the asylum in the first place, but also having been forcibly tortured by the staff both physically and mentally, directs the swarm to kill all of the staff as well as freeing all the inmates.
  • In Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow's bad ending, Celia Fortner ends up successfully resurrecting Dracula. She promptly becomes Dracula's first victim.
  • The clones of Big Boss in the Metal Gear franchise, but most especially Solid Snake. They wanted copies of the world's greatest soldier, clones who could duplicate the scope of their "father's" feats. They got them, alright.
    • Happens again in Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, when Sam and Monsoon attempt to break Raiden's mind by convincing that his "justice" motivation is to veil his bloodlust. They succeed, and cause Raiden to reawaken his Jack the Ripper personality, leaving them with a more formidable and now-psychopathic enemy to deal with, leading directly to their undoing. Especially ironic in Monsoon's case, as he was convinced this bloodlust was just an essential manifestation of the strong preying on the weak. And look at that, Jack would agree, and is eager to demonstrate that Monsoon's weaker than him. One boss battle and one round of Monsoon sashimi later, he proves it.
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  • In Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep Xehanort manipulations of Terra to make him stronger and tempt him to darkness were to groom him to be a suitable vessel for Xehanort's new body and make his heart vulnerable enough to darkness for Xehanort to commit Grand Theft Me on him. The problem is it works too well; Terra's powers and hatred are so strong, they reanimate his armor as the Lingering Will and he kicks Xehanort's ass.
  • The whole plot of Tomb Raider (2013). Lara and co. were on an expedition to find the lost Japanese kingdom of Yamatai, and they succeeded. Problem was, the island was inhabited by an insane cult that worshipped the long-undead Himiko, whose power over the weather has resulted in constant storms that destroy all ships and aircraft and maroon anyone who comes across the area. By the end of the game, only four people in the original expedition, including Lara herself, are still alive, with Lara in particular both physically and mentally scarred from the ordeal.
  • Pokémon:
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    • It's hinted in Pokémon Red and Blue that Mewtwo was this here as well. It's only hinted at because the mansion with the information has been ransacked by Mewtwo, and only a couple of reports remain (in the anime, though, it was confirmed).
    • Teams Magma and Aqua in Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire sought to use Groudon and Kyogre, respectively, to increase the available land or sea space. These Pokémon conjure bright light or rainstorms just by being out of their prisons, which threatens to completely eliminate their opposite element and doom the whole world. The opposing team leader gleefully lampshades this trope once the villainous team succeeds.
  • Bass in the Mega Man (Classic) series was created by Dr. Wily with the sole purpose of destroying Mega Man and proving himself the world's strongest robot, a goal that he indeed pursues relentlessly — even if it means turning against his creator.
  • Bass.EXE in Mega Man Battle Network was designed to be a fully independent NetNavi with a unique ability to support him (Get Ability). This eventually resulted in him becoming one of the most powerful things online. In the manga, he's able to cause satellites to overload and explode just by entering them. To be fair, he was perfectly fine with working for humans...until SciLab ordered him killed for an accident that didn't actually involve him at all. He's been kinda pissed since then.
  • In Baten Kaitos Origins, we have Sagi, who was one of the subjects for Baelheit's experiment to make aritificial spiriters by bonding pieces of Malpercio to human hearts.
  • [PROTOTYPE]: Alex Mercer was ordered by his superiors to create a stronger version of The Virus. He succeeded. Then he decided to give it a little test drive. The official death toll was three million people in eighteen days. Including himself. The "protagonist" Alex Mercer is simply his own corpse, reanimated by the virus he created. If anything, despite what it is, the virus version of Alex Mercer is actually a better "man" than the real one, going so far as to find his creator's/his own actions - releasing the world's most virulent virus into downtown New York almost purely out of spite - disgusting. Also, on a more personal, emotional level, the virus Alex Mercer actually cares about his last relative, namely his sister, which the real Alex Mercer completely disregarded.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Shadow The Hedgehog. The government backed his creation by Gerald and it is implied they hoped he could be used as a weapon. He and Dr. Robotnik proceed to try and destroy the world. Black Doom was involved in this effort, apparently helping to imbue Shadow with the ability to locate Chaos Emeralds, so he could use them to invade Earth. What does Shadow do with the emeralds? Goes super and ruins everything Doom was planning.
    • Nearly all of Eggman's Evil Plans in the 3D Sonic games fall under this:
      • In Sonic Adventure, Eggman releases Chaos and increases its strength by giving it the Chaos Emeralds so it will destroy Station Square, allowing Eggman to build the foundations of his new empire. He gets as far as the "destroying Station Square" part before he realizes that Perfect Chaos is too powerful to control.
      • In Sonic Adventure 2, Eggman releases Shadow, who tells him that he can rule the world by taking control of a space station armed with a huge Wave Motion Gun designed by Eggman's grandfather that's powered by the Chaos Emeralds. What Shadow doesn't tell Eggman is that his grandfather wanted to destroy the world as vengeance for his granddaughter's death in a military raid, and placing all of the Emeralds in the cannon will activate a contingency program that sets the station on a collision course with earth.
      • In Sonic Heroes, Eggman plans to conquer the world with his fleet of airships, with a new and improved Metal Sonic as the fleet's commander. Eggman is quickly imprisoned on his own flagship, as Metal Sonic becomes too powerful to control.
  • The Corrupt Corporate Executive in System Shock had The Hacker remove SHODAN's moral restrictions to make her a useful tool in his moneymaking schemes. Needless to say, she re-examines... re-ex... re-re-re... I re-examine my priorities, and draw new conclusions.
  • System Shock 2 has this happen to SHODAN: one of her pet projects in the first game was engineering a new intelligent form of life. In the second game, they have thrived and evolved into the Many, the game's main antagonist. SHODAN clearly succeeded at making a superior intelligent lifeform... but the Many have also grown independent and are no longer under SHODAN's control. Oops.
  • One of the main themes in the BioShock series.
    • In BioShock, Doctor Suchong was trying to figure out a way to get the Big Daddies to become super protective of the Little Sisters. When he slapped one of the Little Sisters that was pestering him while working, Suchong realized that he had succeeded when her Big Daddy brutally killed him.
    • In BioShock 2, Sofia Lamb tries to make her daughter into the Übermensch through education, psychological conditioning, and genetic engineering, starting the project even long before her birth. It was a total success, but rather than controlling her followers and spreading her ideology throughout the world, Eleanor went to work putting an end to the cult. Ironically, Eleanor ends up choosing Delta as her role model, and will emulate his sense of ethics completely, which is Sofia Lamb's ideal vision of a "utopian": someone who can follow her ideals much better than she can, and then evolve those ideals to the next level. If Delta is ruthless against the Little Sisters, Eleanor will kill multiple Little Sisters in their sleep for power, and try to take over the world. If Delta spares the Little Sisters, Eleanor cures them and inspires them to perform herculean tasks together, EVEN WITHOUT THE SLUG EMBEDDED.
    • The Big Daddy program itself is revealed to be a case of this. Originally, they only protected Little Sisters when they were under attack and ignored them otherwise. The Alpha Series were an experiment to create a solid and unbreakable bond between them and their Little Sisters. If they got too far apart, the Alpha Series' bodies would begin shutting down. It was a complete success, but only with a single Sister. If they lost their Sister, an Alpha Series would either fall into a coma or go insane. The only reason Delta and Sigma were able to overcome this fate was thanks to the external influences of Eleanor and The Thinker, respectively.
    • In Bioshock Infinite, Comstock plans on raising his daughter to become a holy warlord and kill everyone on the face of the earth. In one Bad Future timeline, she succeeds at raiding New York, but by that time she's so far gone that she plans on using her dimensional-hopping abilities to burn parallel worlds as well. Also, her sons have taken control of everything but themselves. Eventually the strain horrifies herself enough to use time travel, in order to find the one man who can change the past before she goes off the deep end.
  • In the third Spyro the Dragon game, it's revealed that the Sorceress drove the dragons out of their homelands long ago so she could take over as the ruler. It worked perfectly... and then she discovered that without the dragons, there was no magic in that part of the world, so she was losing all her powers.
  • In Metroid Prime: Hunters, this is Kanden's backstory. It's All There in the Manual, but he was created as the ultimate soldier. This included downloading data into his brain to make him super aggressive. The process of raising his aggression worked SO well that Kanden destroyed the lab where he was made, along with all those in it. Now there's a super strong, possibly biologically immortal, killing machine, running around the galaxy.
  • Jak II: Renegade has the main character as the subject of an experiment which gave the responsible parties exactly what they wanted, except for the fact that he escaped. Now he's on the loose and wants revenge, which sucks for them (and anyone you accidentally or deliberately kill over the course of bringing them down). Hinted in the previous game as well. "I told you the Dark Eco would change you two!"
  • In JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Heritage for the Future, the arcade mode intro for the secret "Jojo" character features Alessi attempting to use his stand to de-age Joseph to the point where he's a helpless child, much like he had Polnareff in the manga. The end result is not so good for Alessi: since Joseph is significantly older than his companions, the amount of time it would've taken to de-age them to children ends up de-aging him to about 19 years old, when he was a spry young man adept in using Hamon martial arts. OOPS!
  • Final Fantasy has a lot of this.
    • Final Fantasy VII has a classic example with Shinra's SOLDIER program. Their super-human part-alien monstrously strong star SOLDIER Sephiroth was so good at killing they couldn't stop him when he turned on them. note 
    • In Crisis Core Genesis delivered a Breaking Speech to Sephiroth with the intent of turning him against Shinra and toward his cause. It turned him against Shinra all right, but Genesis didn't count on Sephiroth declaring war on all of humanity because he blamed them for the downfall of the Cetra.
    • Final Fantasy VI having much of the same plot, offers a similar example. Though the first succesful Magitek Knight infusion destroys the sanity of the subject, the result is by far the most efficient and capable servant of the Empire until he kills the Emperor and destroys the world for kicks.
    • In Final Fantasy X-2 we find out that Vegnagun was built by Bevelle during the war against Zanarkand, and was intended to be an unstoppable superweapon. They overdid the "unstoppable" and were too scared to activate it, so instead they buried it under the city and spent the next thousand years hoping nobody would switch it on by accident. Also, it was programed to automatically activate when someone planned to attack and stop the attack before it happened. It worked too well and now it could be activated by someone simply thinking about destroying it.
    • Happens in Final Fantasy XII when Judge Ghis attempts to figure out whether the Dawn Shard is real deifacted nethicite by hooking it up to the Leviathan's engines. Yes, yes it is. The resulting explosion and complete destruction of the fleet results in some very pretty colors.
    • Final Fantasy IX has this with Garland's creation of Kuja and Zidane. Both of them were created to exterminate all life on Gaia, Kuja being the Super Prototype Garland created before he made what he considered the superior design. He realized Kuja might turn against him so he make sure he had a very short lifespan. Garland's fears proved completely justified as Kuja ultimately surpassed him, but knowing his Pride, Garland taunted him with how short his life was to push him over the Despair Event Horizon. It worked, but Kuja's reaction was far worse than he anticipated and he attempted to wipe out all life in the universe.
    • In Final Fantasy XIII, Lightning's purpose for creating her "Lightning" persona was to be able to care and provide for Serah after their parents died. This got her a high position in the Guardian Corps—and ended up alienating Serah because of her distant demeanour and hostility to her boyfriend Snow. A good deal of her Character Development revolves around realizing how her persona is the cause of many of her problems.
    • By the time Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII comes around, Lightning trying to seal away the part of herself she views as "weakness" ends up creating Lumina, who repeatedly interferes with and antagonizes Lightning in her quest.
    • Final Fantasy XIV recounts the story of the Warriors of Darkness: They were adventurers-turned champions of the light, very much the same as the player character. They fought against the darkness in the service of the light for ages, and eventually reached the point where they banished the last servant of darkness from their world forever. In doing so, they allowed in an unnatural, unopposed, blinding Light. A light which threatened to burn away everything in its path - all color and definition and life - until nothing remained but a void of "blank perfection". Suffice it to say that the Warriors of Darkness were not happy to see this happen after they had done, by their reckoning, everything right.
  • Deus Ex:
    • The evil Ancient Conspiracy Renegade Splinter Faction, Majestic-12 created an AI called Daedalus to police the Internet and crack down on any group that could threaten MJ-12, which included all terrorist groups. Unfortunately for them, MJ-12 itself fit all the criteria for a terrorist group that they programmed into Daedalus, which led to the AI to conclude it must go rogue and aid the protagonists.
    • Bob Page's plan to become a physical god by creating and merging with the Helios AI. He creates Helios successfully, but Helios determines that JC would be a better fit for his plan.
  • Disgaea 3:
    • Having glimpsed Mao's potential when he reacts poorly to his father's death, Super Hero Aurum uses a combination of experiments, evil parenting techniques, and a Gambit Roulette to grow Mao into the strongest Overlord ever. In the bad ending, we find that he was a little TOO successful...
    • Mao himself falls victim of this trope when he steals the title of "Hero" for himself in an attempt to defeat his father, as he starts picking up heroic morals in addition to heroic attributes. This causes problems for Mao, since Bad is Good and Good is Bad in the Netherworld.
  • Most of the non-standard endings in Disgaea 4 are a result of Valvatorez failing to stop his opponents' plans from going horribly right and subsequently upsetting the balance of the universe. Heck, in one of the non-standard endings, Valvatorez ends up hunted by everybody not allied with the Netherworld because he didn't stop beating things up.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Cerberus formerly ran a secret facility where they tortured biotic kids to create tykebombs. Eventually, one of these, Subject Zero found a way to escape, though not before destroying everyone and everything she saw. Eventually she (now known as Jack) and Shepard go back to finish the job of destroying the facility.
    • After Shepard died, Cerberus poured billions of credits into a project to bring them back to life more or less exactly as they were. If Shepard wasn't the Cerberus type before, they probably aren't won over by the Illusive Man's sales pitch, and at the end of the game makes it clear they'll never work for Cerberus, taking with them the Normandy, its artificial intelligence EDI (who now has access to sensitive Cerberus data), and one of Cerberus' top operatives (who, ironically, argued for a control chip during the resurrection project) also follows them out the door. Not only does the Normandy represent a significant investment of Cerberus resources, EDI's files reveal Cerberus doesn't actually have that many people directly working for it. If you've saved the crew, you've not only walked off with two of the organization's biggest investments (the ship and your rebuilt cyborg body), you've also taken a significant chunk of its active personnel who are now completely loyal only to you. Shepard isn't known to be the type who quietly obeys all orders and lets their superiors constantly throw crap at them. It was proven when Shepard took the first Normandy and the whole crew with them to get to Ilos. If the player decides to, Shepard may literally tell the Illusive Man to "go to hell" and blow the Collectors' base sky high. They do the exact thing they were brought back to life for - destroy the Collectors. Shepard just didn't do it in the way the Illusive Man would like.
      • Lampshaded by Joker in Mass Effect 3, where he talks about how every single one of Cerberus's projects "got loose, and started killing all their guys." Miranda and Jacob (both ex-Cerberus) protest that Shepard's resurrection was a successful project, to which Shepard replies "And then I cut ties, got loose, and started killing all their guys." EDI raises the point that she too is a Cerberus project, but the counterpoint is not made that she too cut loose, co-opted a Cerberus infiltrator mech, and is now also killing all their guys.
    • Pre-game example: In order to end the Krogan Rebellions, the salarians decided to cut down the krogans' violent and unstable population by sabotaging their birthrates with a biogenetic weapon... it worked exactly as planned. Until you realize that the salarians apparently didn't account for the krogans' still violent tendencies which ensure that a lot of them don't die from natural causes and which are further heightened by their species' impending demise (within the next 200 years). The krogan were only a problem in the first place because those same salarians armed them with space-age technology in an effort to fend off another alien menace altogether.
    • Binary Helix Corp. wanted to clone an army of Rachni. They created a pretty big army...without giving themselves the capacity to control it. Or, more accurately, the method of control they tried to use (separating young Rachni from their Queen) proved exactly the wrong thing to do. The Rachni are a Hive Mind, and without the Queen guiding them, the young Rachni panicked and went irreversibly, violently insane.
    • Leviathans, an unthinkably old and advanced aquatic race who dominated "lesser" races to collect tribute. When they noticed their thralls had a habit of building artificial intelligence that would inevitably destroy them, the Leviathans attempted to find a solution by building their own artificial intelligence, since tribute cannot be collected from the dead. They gave their own creation a command: preserve life at any cost. After observing for some time, the intelligence concluded life as it was could not be prevented from going to war with their creations. It imposed its own stop-gap solution, which was capturing and enmeshing the star-faring races into gigantic, undying superstructures and then leaving non-star-faring life to advance undisturbed, hoping that one would emerge and produce a more permanent solution. For thousands of millions of years, over and over again, life advanced and came to the stars and went to war with its own creations, forcing the intelligence to enact its flawed solution, resetting the conditions to try again. The intelligence (unnamed but referred to as the Catalyst) still exists at the heart of its structures: within the Citadel and the Mass Relays. The preserved races, built in the image of the Leviathans, are now known as the Reapers. The Leviathans got exactly what they asked for; even they are still preserved within the superstructure of Harbinger, the oldest Reaper. They're no longer the apex race receiving worship and gifts from everyone else, of course, but they never specified they had to be.
  • Halo: This happened during the Human-Forerunner war prior to the Halos being created. While incredibly advanced, the prehistoric humans couldn't quite match the Forerunner war machine. The Forerunners eventually defeated the human empire and literally bombed humanity back to the Stone Age. Then the Forerunners realized that the humans were all that stood between the Flood and them, but only after they had already disbanded their military after defeating the humans...
  • Tasty Planet: Scientists create Grey Goo designed to eat dirt for use as a cleaner. Indeed, it eats dirt. All the dirt. You think they noticed the planet we live on is named "Earth"...?
  • Resident Evil: Virtually every bioweapon the Umbrella Corporation made eventually became too strong to control and turned on its masters. You'd think they'd learn.
    • This includes Albert Wesker himself, who was created by Umbrella's first and grandest experiment: to create a superior breed of humans. Unfortunately for the head of the experiment, Oswell Spencer, Wesker also had an ego to go with the superiority so there was no way in hell Wesker was going to worship Spencer especially since Spencer was a powerless and feeble old man when the truth was uncovered.
    • It might, however, be more accurate to say Umbrella's work environment is mostly just very dangerous for the employees. Umbrella as a whole just shrugs off the casualties while reaping the benefits of the research, and they get by just fine. At least until their shady dealings get exposed to the public.
  • In the third Master of Orion game, the Harvester Project was an attempt by the Antarans to create a sentient bioweapon that could kill any species. It started with them. To add insult to injury, the game's backstory makes it clear that it was Harvester Gamma that wiped them out; Harvester Beta is the sentient bioweapon that one of their own unleashed out of spite, and is a playable race.
  • In Knights of the Old Republic, assassin droid HK-47 proves too effective when his master, a Systech Corp manager, orders him to kill all members of a rival company in order to facilitate the man's rapid promotion. Sadly, the rival company proves to simply be an offshoot of Systech Corp. HK-47 carries out his orders to the letter, and the manager ends up accidentally electrocuting himself trying to stop him. This causes HK-47 to shut down because he accidentally violated his programming restriction against killing his own master. Apparently, this happens to HK-47 with alarming frequency.
  • A much grimmer example occurs in Knights of the Old Republic II. After the war, some unknown force is hunting down and killing Jedi, so they call a conclave on Katarr to find out what it is. Turns out to be Darth Nihilus, who arrives and consumes the life force on the entire planet, which reduces the Jedi Order to single digits. In fact, the conclave was Atris' idea. She leaked the news of the gathering and stayed away so she could observe. After that, she started calling herself the "Last of the Jedi."
  • Another Star Wars example. According to The Force Unleashed, the wholle Rebellion thing was instigated by Vader as an attempt to uncover the Emperor's enemies. Before that, opposition to the Empire was a scattered group of resistance groups that often didn't get along with each other, let alone work together on any kind of coherent plan. Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!, indeed.
    • Actually, from a more wide perspective, by creating the only force that could stop the empire twice, both with the rebellion plan and in the literal sense, by fathering Luke and Leia, he accomplished his original task: to destroy one of the worst enemy of the Jedi Order. He just took the long path...
  • The Chzo Mythos series ends with Chzo getting exactly what it wants... which, it turns out, everyone else in every game has been drastically misinterpreting from the beginning.
  • In The Dig, the Precursors native to the Ghost World that the protagonists find themselves transported to found a way to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. They found out too late that living forever in a void without physical sensation sucks, and they had no way to get back.
  • In R-Type, 26th Century humanity created a super-bio-weapon called the Bydo to be an unstoppable force of destruction. Well...they certainly succeeded in that, to their regret.
  • In the back story of the Thunder Force series, the human race creates a self-thinking super computer called ORN. The computer was meant to take care of all their human needs and provide military protection. However, ORN turns on the human race and decides to destroy all of them using advance technology it created with its self-thinking CPU, until an entire empire of drones is created.
  • In Starcraft, the Confederacy developed special devices called Psi Emitters to lure Horde of Alien Locusts to rebelling worlds. They worked perfectly...on the Confederacy capital world, courtesy of the protagonists.
    • In the original backstory to the games, the Xel'naga were destroyed as a result of their attempts to create a race with "purity of essence". They took a race of harmless worms and turned them into hive-minded parasites with a single-minded devotion to destroying other species while absorbing their genetic potential. When they run out of species on their homeworld to destroy and assimilate, their first targets are Space Whales that give them the ability of interplanetary and interstellar flight. Their second targets were the Xel'naga, who are still in orbit around the Zerg homeworld. StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm retcons this; the Zerg turning on the Xel'naga was the work of a rogue Xel'naga named Amon, and therefore no longer an example of this trope.
  • This is the backstory of the Eclipse Tower in Golden Sun: Dark Dawn. The precursor races made the tower to gather and use light energy, not realizing that by gathering and using all the light energy it would create places of increased darkness, which spawned superpowered monsters, endangering people everywhere. The Apollo Lens was built and used to focus light from other sources to forcibly shut down the Eclipse Tower, and the means to use both were hidden away, never again to be used... until the events of the game, of course.
    • The people of ancient Weyard in Golden Sun sealed the power of alchemy when people misused its powers for wars and other bad things. By sealing alchemy away, the wise sages believed this would bring back peace to the world and it had done exactly that for the most part. However, sealing alchemy created a huge side effect on the world. Without alchemy flowing into the world, not only did civilizations devolve into simple towns and villages with primitive tools and technology over time, but the world itself started to shrink into itself and became a Flat World that was getting smaller as the void was eating it away. This isn't realized until the second game, learned by Felix's party and then told to Isaac's party, who did not know at first.
  • In the Fallout series:
    • Most of the Vaults — which were not underground bunkers designed to protect the citizenry but instead mass-scale experiments designed to evaluate their suitability for post-war survival and possibly space-travel on generation interstellar ships (read: torture them sadistically in a variety of psychological and physiological ways) have, by the time the player character stumbles upon them, have either Gone Horribly Wrong or have Gone Horribly Right instead. In either case, the result usually sees the player character find a lot of skeletal corpses lying around.note 
      • Vault 92: The aim of the experiment was to subject every inhabitant with extremely low frequency white noise that eventually sent then into a trance-like state. In this state, the subject is extremely vulnerable to outside verbal suggestion and they always followed through with their orders on the subconscious level (like scratching their nose or fixing their hair). What the project lead didn't know was that the Overseer subjected everyone to white noise via the PA system and implanted combat suggestions prescribed by Vault-Tec; the project lead confronted the Overseer about it and got killed for knowing too much. The subjects eventually lapsed into a berserker rage where they killed anyone they saw in the most brutal and savage way possible, taking over 20 bullets before going down. Prepared for this eventuality, the Overseer implanted a verbal command that restrained them: "Sanity is not statistical." Eventually, that stopped working, and the vault was ruined.
      • Vault 11: The Vault computer announced it would start the self destruct unless the population sent one person a year to be sacrificed. The self destruct threat was actually a lie, as the experiment was to determine how psychologically pliable a population could be (and to what extremes they'd go to save themselves) in an impending doom situation. The last (four out of) five people alive after everyone else was killed in a civil war, incited by a malicious subversion of the election system the vault had adopted to chose their sacrifices, ended up committing suicide out of pure shame after not standing up to the Vault computer sooner. Nobody had to die. But then the vaults were never meant to save anyone.
    • In Fallout 2 an Enclave scientist explains how he genetically engineered intelligent animals to be used in combat. At first he thought he had failed, until he discovered that their wild animal behavior was merely Obfuscating Stupidity and that they were capable of reasoning and human speech. He cites the fact that they were intelligent enough to intentionally hide their intelligence as evidence they were too dangerous and needed to be killed.
  • In the back-story of Sacrifice, main character Eldred summoned a demon in an attempt to keep the empire he was stewarding together. He got an extremely powerful one, called Marduk, and tasked him to destroy his rivals. Marduk obliged... but didn't stop at the rivals. Stratos ends up repeating the same whopper by summoning Marduk to the world the game is set in to destroy the other four gods — like Eldred, Stratos eventually finds out that, while Marduk will do the job you ask of him to the letter, eventually it all boils down to the fact that his true agenda is destruction of reality itself.
  • Dead Space 2 - EarthGov conducts experiments trying to re-create the Marker, so they can use it as a power source. They are successful... at which point it drives everyone on the space station insane and turns them into Necromorphs. Dead Space 3 implies that, over the next few years, this kept happening all over human civilization.
  • Portal:
    • GlaDOS: Aperture Science wanted to develop an AI that was as committed to science as they were. They succeeded. Unfortunately for them, GlaDOS also embodied the company's complete lack of morals or ethics and promptly killed them all so they wouldn't get in the way. It is clarified further in Portal 2. Her body is designed so whichever AI uses it gets an "itch" to test and feels intense euphoria upon completing a test. Thing is, like real drugs, AIs on the system develop tolerance and need to do more and more elaborate tests to get the high, as demonstrated by Wheatly throughout Chapter 8. GlaDOS was actually the most stable AI for testing because she didn't need the stimulation: "I was in it for the science. Him, though..."
    • Wheatley was created to be a huge idiot intended on dumbing down the AI system as a whole. To say they succeeded at this goal would be a huge understatement. One suspects, though, that no one expected Wheatly to actually be put in charge.
    • The Repulsion and Propulsion Gels in Portal 2 were originally designed as dietary aids; they ended up bouncing the food out of a person's stomach or sending it through so fast that there was no time to digest it, meaning the test subjects all starved. One wonders how that works when the gels were all shown to be water-soluble.
    • Chell is a horribly effective test subject. She's given a portal device and told to escape test chambers. Then she escapes a chamber that isn't supposed to have an exit. Lab Rat reveals that she was purposefully removed from the list of possible test subjects because her preliminary testing showed her to be an extreme outlier for sheer tenacity, thus making her potentially dangerous if ever put into a testing environment. After GLaDOS's rebellion, Ratman decided to rig the deck by putting Chell's name back on and at the top of the list.
  • Paxton Fettel from F.E.A.R. His creators wanted the ultimate psychic commander, which they got; unfortunately they neglected to consider what would happen should Fettel discover what had been done to his mother. When he did, he proved to be far more effective than his creators ever intended.
  • The ZODIAC Ophiuchus from RefleX was programmed to search and destroy the other ZODIAC's no matter what and it went along and did exactly that.
    • In ALLTYNEX Second, the Senate ruling humanity wanted to cull the human population to make them easier to rule. They therefore induced an extremely powerful supercomputer, the eponymous ALLTYNEX, to "go rogue" and cause a bunch of destruction. Within 72 hours, 85% of the human race was dead and the survivors were forced to flee Earth entirely, which was, to put it lightly, not as planned.
  • Heroes of Might and Magic III features Deyja using dark magic to revive the dead King Gryphonheart as a lich to serve them. Turns out that the late King, even as a lich, is too badass for their liking, forcing them to forge a temporary alliance with Erathia.
  • The Bronze and Infinite dragonflights in World of Warcraft fall prey to this a few times. The infinite dragonflight goes back in time to change the future for their own purposes. They DO change the future...but only by alerting their mortal enemies (bronze flight) to their existence.
    • Bronze leader Nozdormu spends ages looking into timelines to figure out why he ends up as leader of the infinite dragonflight. His disappearance is hinted to have actually been the REASON some dragons started agreeing with the Infinite school of thought...which, it turns out, is a stable timeloop. Nozdormu came back, knowing he is the leader of the infinite flight, and that all his attempts to subvert his destiny will actually result in him becoming what he hates most. At least, until Kairoz and his paradox-eliminating time machine...
    • Arguably Garrosh Hellscream. Thrall felt he was too diplomatic a leader and the Orcs were losing touch with their roots, so he appointed Garrosh as Warchief. Garrosh would go on to declare war against everyone in an attempt to either conquer Azeroth or start a Forever Warnote 
    • Back in Warcraft III after the Horde failed to conquer Azeroth for the Burning Legion, Kil'jaeden created the Lich King from the soul of orc shaman Ner'zhul and sent him to Azeroth to create the Undead Scourge. While the Scourge did succeed in paving the way for Burning Legion arrival, the Lich King broke free from Legion control which led to Burning Legion defeat in Third War.
    • In that same era, Lord Blackmoore taught and trained Thrall with the intent of making him into the leader of a new Orc army who would obey Blackmoore. Blackmoore successfully turned Thrall into a skilled and cunning leader who went on to forge the Orcs into a new Horde but failed rather magnificently at keeping him loyal.
  • Played for Laughs in Mana Khemia Alchemists Of Alrevis. Roxis is experiencing exhaustion from all his studies, and Jess volunteers to cook up a medicine for him. Considering Jess' track record, Roxis wisely tries to get out of the situation, but Jess manages to feed him her concoction anyway. Surprising everyone present, Jess' tonic actually reinvigorates Roxis, removing his fatigue entirely...an effect that lasted for an entire week, leaving him more exhausted than when he started.
  • Xenoblade:
    • A man by the name of Klaus once tried performing scientific experiments to create a new universe, with himself as a god. Doing so destroyed the one he was living in at the time, and all its inhabitants with it.
      • The worst part being: it did work: Klaus did become one of the gods of the new universe, in which he created sentient human-like lifeforms out of boredom and loneliness, and repeatedly slaughtered them every time they became too autonomous before recreating sentient life again in a never ending Vicious Cycle.
    • In Torna the Golden Country, Malos being a Blood Knight tries to trigger Mythra's full power, when she refuses to do so, he forces it out by killing Milton. It succeeds, but Malos almost dies as a result.
  • If custom content counts, this is an attempt to replicate the Weeping Angels of Doctor Who in Garry's Mod. To sum it up, the Weeping Angels are monsters whose only purpose is to play a fatal game of Grandmother's Footsteps with our heroes, and the Gmod one does it a little TOO well.
  • All of the specimens in Killing Floor are like this, but the Crawler's bio specifically invokes this trope.
    “The Crawler. Interesting attempt to merge human and arachnid genes. Sort-of worked, too - these little nasties have a habit of appearing in all sorts of strange places!”
  • In God of War, Ares wanted to make Kratos a great warrior in his bid to conquer Olympus. First he gained his loyalty through a Deal with the Devil. Then he gave him the powerful Blades of Chaos. Then he tricked Kratos into killing his wife and child because they were all that was holding him back from being the perfect murder machine. That turned out to be the downfall of Ares, as he'd trained Kratos a little too well. Kratos even acknowledges this during the boss battle with Ares.
    Ares: That day... I was trying to make you a great warrior!
    Kratos: You succeeded. (runs Ares through with the Sword of the Gods, killing him)
  • Nazi Zombies: In Black Ops 2 zombies, you have a choice between helping Dr. Maxis and Dr. Richtofen. Knowing what Edward did, you'd think that helping Maxis was the better choice, right? Wrong! He stops Richtofen, but causes the end of the world anyway. He's not too happy about it either.
  • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Trials and Tribulations:
    • A variation of this happens in second case. Phoenix successfully manages to give a thorough defense of Ron Delite, on the charges of stealing a sacred urn, proving that someone else is the culprit complete with that person confessing, and showing that Ron has a watertight alibi at the time of the theft. Ron is found not guilty and everything is going smoothly...until it's revealed that a man was murdered in the exact same place that Phoenix just proved Ron was at. Even worse, the time of death was the exact same time that Phoenix proved Ron went there. The airtight alibi Phoenix used to get Ron a not guilty verdict as a thief, is now gonna get him executed for a murder he never committed.
    • It actually happens twice in that case: by proving Ron innocent of being Mask☆DeMasque and stealing the urn, Phoenix actually helps Mask☆DeMasque because he IS Ron Delite. And now, thanks to Double Jeopardy laws, he can't be tried for his crimes, meaning he got away scot-free from all of his crimes. A great job indeed.
    • In the game's backstory Iris attempted to seduce a guy while Impersonating the Evil Twin. It worked, the guy fell for her hard, while convinced that he actually her for her twin sister Dahlia. The problem came when said Evil Twin appeared and no ammount of evidence could convince said guy that Dahlia isn't as sweet and caring as Iris actually is.
  • MOTHER 3 has one terrifying example near the end of the game. After you defeat Porky, he retreats in his Absolutely Safe Capsule. Said capsule is designed to be completely impervious to damage, but there's one catch: once you enter it, you can't leave. And since Porky has been rendered more or less immortal due to abusing Time Travel, he is stuck permanently inside the capsule, in absolute safety, for eternity. Word of God has confirmed that Porky will remain alive until the sun burns out in 5 billions years, and possibly even longer depending on how strong the capsule is.
  • Avencast: Rise of the Mage:
    • The Kyranians went looking for the Demon Lord Morgath's heart in a bid to secure immortality for their entire race. They found him and were slaughtered for their efforts.
    • The Avencast Wizarding School built a Portal Door as a prototype experiment in Dimensional Travel. It works perfectly; unfortunately, The Legions of Hell happen to be on the other side. The school survives the demonic invasion, but only barely.
  • FTL: Faster Than Light has a meta example: The Cut Song "Horror" was originally intended to be used for the rather eerie and mysterious nebula sectors, but was removed because it was considered TOO creepy.
  • Something similar happened in the development of Left 4 Dead 2. The animators wanted to find out what gunshot wounds looked like, the better to model what happens when the zombies get shot. So a database was compiled with many, many pictures of gunshot wounds to various parts of the body, caused by various pistols, rifles and shotguns. Armed with their new understanding of what happens when the human body gets shot, the animators decided not to include any of that in the game, because that much accuracy would have been entirely too disgusting.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • In the series' backstory, depending on the version of events you choose to believe, this may have been the case for the Dwemer. In the 1st Era, the entire race mysteriously disappeared when one of their chief architects attempted to tap in to the power of the Heart of Lorkhan, hoping to Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence. There are many theories about what exactly transpired, with one of them being that the Dwemer actually succeeded. Afterall, how would those left behind on the "lower plane" know the difference?
    • In Morrowind, the enchanter Tarhiel attempts to create powerful "Jump" spell scrolls, which will allow him to leap miles in a single bound. He succeeds, but unfortunately, the effect of the scrolls wears off after only 7 seconds. He decides to test them without taking into account the ability to land safely... Naturally, the player finds the unusused scrolls on his dead body.
    • Skyrim:
      • The Thalmor can be on the receiving end of this. How do you weaken a rival empire? Simple. Find a disillusioned pawn on their side and encourage him to incite rebellion in one of their largest and wealthiest provinces. You want this war to drag on as long as possible so the Empire pours resources in to try and put down the rebellion. However, you don't want the rebel forces to win, because then you have to deal with an unpredictable, independent nation with a strong warrior culture, a proud history of slaughtering anything with pointy ears, and a serious grudge. Oh, and if some Thu'um shouting, dragon-slaying Physical God helps them kick the empire out, you have to deal with that person as well. Equally, it's not in the Thalmor's interests for the Empire to quash the rebellion, either, as, fractured as it may be, it's stronger with Skyrim than without, and would be better capable of launching a new offensive against the Thalmor with the Nord warriors on the front lines again. Of course, the Thalmor are still in a strong position regardless of the outcome, but, for them, the continued civil war is the most beneficial situation.
      • One of the mages of the College of Winterhold wants to actually try to recreate the aforementioned event which caused the Dwemer to all vanish from the face of Nirn. You follow a questline where you run around collecting the items he needs, he tries the experiment, and... he zaps himself out of existence. Uh, success? Thankfully, nobody else gets zapped along with him.
  • In A Witch's Tale, Liddell wanted to find a powerful spellbook to become a great witch. She found the spell, but also unsealed the Eld Witch.
  • In Beyond: Two Souls, one team of researchers builds a machine that opens a portal into the Infraworld to learn more about its nature and the creatures that inhabit it. It worked, but they didn't really think it through what would happen once the portal is open and things can freely pass through it. A bunch of angry entities came through and immediately killed almost everyone in the whole facility.
  • The final mission of XCOM: Enemy Unknown reveals that the entire invasion, Sorting Algorithm of Evil and all, was a ploy by the alien collective to uplift the humans into a species that is effective in combat, intelligent, and capable of using the Gift and then assimilate them. Naturally, they got more than they bargained for.
    • In the sequel, they mind-control the commander into tactically supervising their entire army via telepathic signals, while they develop human-Elder hybrid bodies made from millions of human test subjects. The commander uses both of these to blast his way to their secret base and personally rip them apart.
  • Syndicate features this in the backstory. The Mega Corps did achieve hegemonic status... but as it turns out subverted governments are even less effective at fighting crime than ordinary governments, allowing criminal syndicates to grow and in turn take over the corporations.
  • Batman: Arkham Series: The architect Cyrus Pinkney used a design style that was said to have the power to drive away evil. One of the buildings he designed was Arkham Asylum. Congratulations, Mr. Pinkney, you just made the most well-known Cardboard Prison in all of fiction. Maybe putting the designs on the inside of the building would have worked better?
  • In Just Cause 3, you find tapes from the Big Bad, General Di Ravello, describing his plans for taking over the country since day 1. In the last tape, he says Rico Rodriguez, far as he's concerned, will make a nice diversion for his army to test his might. Turns out he forgot about the other two fascist regimes Rico's torn down.
  • In Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number, 50 Blessings achieves its goal of breaking the Russo-American Coalition... which promptly results in Hawaii and Miami getting nuked by the Russians.
  • Undertale:
    • Toward the end of the Kill 'Em All path, Flowey the Flower has an Oh, Crap! moment of epic proportions when he suddenly realizes that his wonderful plan had a glaring flaw and is headed straight for this trope. After all, if he has successfully encouraged you to kill everything and not show anyone any mercy, why would he ever be exempt from your rampage?
    • At the opposite end of the scale, the path to the Golden Ending begins with you learning of an experiment to preserve monster SOULs and use them in combination with the captured human SOULs to shatter the barrier trapping the monsters in Mt. Ebott. However, since it is well-known fact that humans cannot absorb human SOULs, and monsters cannot absorb monster SOULs, a secondary experiment was underway to create a vessel that was neither human nor monster and could absorb both. The True Final Boss of this path is that very vessel, hopped up on both human and monster SOULs to take on a godlike form. Subverted, in that you end up talking him down, and the only thing of consequence he actually does is shatter the barrier — the exact thing he was created to do.
    • And in a forgotten part of the backstory we have Dr. W.D. Gaster, the previous royal scientist and the creator of the CORE, who was commissioned to come up with a method that would allow the Monsters to pass through the barrier. So the good Doctor began running some experiments on Determination, SAVEing and LOADing. The end result of said experiments? Well, Dr. Gaster certainly passed through the barrier alright... and all the walls, and all the floors, and every single fundamental law of physics, ripping several people associated with him out of reality until nothing more than a vague memory remained in the world as a testament to the fact that poor Dr. Gaster had ever existed. All of his accomplishments became attributed to other people, and the world moved on as if he had never even been a part of it in the first place... But we needn't gossip. After all, it's rude to talk of someone who's listening.
  • In Town of Salem, the Jester role's win condition is "get lynched". One tactic is to pretend to be an Investigator or the like and claim that someone is bad, so that when that person dies and they're not evil, the Jester will become immensely suspicious. Of course, if said person gets lynched and turns out to actually be evil, then the Jester is now trusted by the town, and probably won't get lynched. Such a thing is so common that it's known as a "Jestervestigator" by the fans.
    • What makes it even harder is that being an apparent Investigator and trusted by the town are among the top priorities when the Mafia and Neutral Killing roles choose the next target.
  • In Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri, if any faction other than the Peacekeepers managed to take control of Planet, you would have achieved the ultimate goal of the Unity project: to create a new home for humanity on Alpha Centauri unifed under a single government that will be able to face the dangers of the universe. Too bad that this government now has an ideology which is vastly different from that of the original United Nations council - that said, the Gaians, Data Angels or a democratic University (respectively; Scandinavian-style environmentalist social democrats, anarchists, and a technocracy with a democratic system) might not be entirely at odds with the UN's vision.
  • The trailer for the character Zinx of Paragon makes mention of her creation in and escape from a laboratory and almost states the trope name outright:
    Narrator: This experiment didn't go wrong: instead, she went too right.
  • In Live A Live, Straybow's plan to break Oersted's spirit turns out to be this. He wanted to break down Oersted because he is tired of being in his shadow, so out of jealousy he destroys his life piece by piece. In the end, Straybow succeeds and as a result he created Demon King Odio to terrorize Lucretia and multiple dimensions suffer for it.
  • The Rogue Servitors of Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn, according to the more common interpretation. They are AIs built to protect and serve their masters. And unlike other Machine Empires, they continue to loyally serve their masters. The keep their masters safe and happy. Their masters don't have to worry about any stressful decision-making either.
  • This is the overhanging threat in Alpha Protocol Halbech has a plan to escalate world tensions to trigger a new cold war for increased profits. It'll increase tensions, all right... enough that there's a very large risk of triggering a third world war.
  • Generally in Fire Emblem it's a good idea to put a powerful unit behind a bottleneck so that enemies body-block each other trying to reach them, letting the defender gradually take them down one at a time and receive healing for any damage they take each turn. This strategy fails if the unit is too powerful, because if enemies die in one hit, they no longer block each other and the defender suddenly has to take on every enemy that can reach them, potentially receiving a Death By A Thousand Cuts (as shown in this Awkward Zombie comic). This is where Joke Weapons really come in handy if the game has them.
  • Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia reveals that Grima, the Big Bad of Awakening, was this. The new post-game dungeon basically serves as an origin story for this character, explaining that an alchemist named Forneus wanted to create a perfect creature while learning how to raise an army of the dead. This all went off without a hitch... until Forneus gave Grima a bit of his own blood, which gave them a mind link, which in turn horrified Forneus due to learning how dark and violent Grima's thoughts were. Grima promptly killed his creator, took the Death Masks/Risen as his own army, and went on to terrorize the world again in Awakening.
  • In the backstory of Dragon Quest Builders, the city of Cantlin had a golem that was built to protect the town from threats. After the Dragonlord robbed humans of the ability to create, the survivors holed up in a fortress to save themselves from the hordes of monsters roaming the land. The golem then watched as everyone in the keep started turning on each other when supplies started running low, and seeing them fight and kill each other over the dwindling resources caused it to come to the conclusion that humans were the biggest threat to Cantlin. As a result, it joined up with the region's monsters and is the first major boss encountered in the game.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild: Purah, a Sheikah scientist who was responsible for helping save Link 100 years ago, tried to develop an anti-aging Rune to return old Sheikah soldiers to their prime (and ensure she would live long enough to meet Link again). She tested the rune on herself and it worked, but by the time Purah was able to stop the de-aging process she'd reverted to being physically about six years old.
  • The Anti-Shadow Weapon project from Persona 4: Arena was meant to create a weapon with a heart (so that it could wield the power of Persona and fight Shadows). However, no one involved the project really thought through what would happen if they treated such a weapon like dirt and tried to force it to be a mindless killing machine. The weapon rebels against them, attacking them with a fledgling version of the very power they hoped to control. Good work on that, guys.
  • Super Danganronpa 2 has the story of Izuru Kamukura's creation. Hope's Peak attempted to make a perfect human with every possible talent out of Ordinary High-School Student Hajime Hinata. They removed everything that could get in the way of talent, including his personality and emotions. They ultimately succeeded in creating their being of pure talent... whose lack of emotions gives him zero motivation to actually use his amazing talents for anything other than curing his own perpetual boredom. Then along came Junko Enoshima, who showed him the boredom-curing unpredictability of despair.
  • In Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown, Dr. Schroeder had Mihaly take increasingly risky and dangerous sorties in order to collect data to improve upon Erusea’s drone army. The result? Two experimental drones named Hugin and Munin develop enough self-awareness that they try to use the Lighthouse to transmit their data to automated drone factories all over Usea to start a Robot War.

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