Villains in video games sometimes use an intercom system to relentlessly mock the player character, or simply to make funny comments that amuse the player and offer some insight into the villain's personalityparticularly, that they feel confident enough in their strength to not make greater efforts to stop you, feeling content to merely make fun of you in often clever ways. This almost always overlaps with sinister surveillance, as it demonstrates that your enemy can see your every action.
This is often used to characterize the villain and help establish a relationship with the player while keeping them well out of shotgun range.
You'll usually hear the villain become less confident and more desperate as you destroy their Mooks and get closer to them. You might even hear a Villainous Breakdown over the intercom. Also expect a lot of This Cannot Be!.
Compare Enemy Chatter.
- Joker does this to Batman in the graphic novel The Killing Joke.
- Simon in Die Hard with a Vengeance doesn't use an intercom, but his messages have much the same effect.
- Jigsaw in the Saw series communicates with his victims via pre-recorded messages on microcassette tapes, but it's more or less the same trope.
- Gruntilda in the first game, possibly the Trope Maker. She harasses you constantly as you traverse her lair, making badass boasts and cracking jokes at Banjo and Kazooie's expense, always in rhyme. She also speaks up the first time you're hurt by specific hazards. Once you beat her, you can still explore her lair, but the intercom is silent.
- Similarly, the sequel, Banjo Tooie, introduces the "Eagle-Eyed Foreman", a nameless, faceless corporate goon who informs you of certain goings-on and sics robotic drones on you if he spots you on one of his many security cameras.
- The Joker throughout Batman: Arkham Asylum. The Joker, Harley Quinn, Penguin, and Two-Face in their respective bases in Arkham City.
- BioShock After a certain point, Andrew Ryan will start communicating with you via the portable radio you picked up at the start of the game. Sofia Lamb does the same in the sequel.
- Borderlands 2: Handsome Jack does this through the echo system.
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2: When you go up against Yuri, he will frequently taunt your moves. It's implied he's actually transmitting this telepathically.
- Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3: Sometimes it is just your allies being snarky but it is Tim Curry on that one and Andrew Divoff.
- DeBlob 2: Although he's technically speaking gibberish, Comrade Black taunts you throughout the final level, promising that you can\'t get to his orbital hypno ray in time. He even gets kind of meta, telling you to access the menu and quit the level.
- Duke Nukem I: Dr. Proton mocks Duke in some levels via videophone.
- In Fable, during fights with Jack of Blades' minions, he constantly taunts you telepathically, with cruel but hilariously accurate imitations of your own Annoying Video-Game Helper guildmaster.
- The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind: Dagoth Ur does this to the player once you enter the final dungeon and prepare to face off with him, taunting that you could not possibly defeat a god.
- Fear: In the third game, a succession of psychic commanders taunt you (they seem to really hate the Point Man, possibly because of his connection to Alma, and thus the highly traumatic \"upgrades\" they were given).
- Half Life 2: You hear Dr. Breen through public address systems throughout the game. In the final chapter, as you approach his office, he talks to you directly through the building's intercom.
- Tomator from The Lost Vikings and its sequel.
- In Manhunt you are trapped in some sort of sick cinematographic experiment and the director follows you around and trolls you through the earpiece.
- Max Payne: In the final level, Nicole Horne taunts you as you make your way to her in the Aesir Corporate Building.
- Mother 3: Porky taunts you as you travel to every floor of the Empire Porky Building EXCEPT the 100th floor.
- Mystery Case Files: Escape From Ravenhearst — Charles Dalimar included an audio system in the underground areas specifically so he could tell the Master Detective what she\'s supposed to learn about him in this area.
- Several bosses in Neverwinter Nights do the telepathic version of this.
"Let's try it her way. Fatty. Adopted fatty. Fatty-fatty-no-parents."
- GLaDOS in the first game, possibly the Trope Codifier. A malevolent supercomputer with a quick wit and a sharp tongue that cracks wise almost constantly in her Creepy Monotone. In this case, the fact that she's an actual character and not just a series of prerecorded messages is a major plot twist, though it's well-known now.
- Wheatley from Portal 2 attempts this, but he just can't match the wit of his predecessor.
- In Rocket: Robot on Wheels, Jojo will taunt you whenever you activate ticket switches. He also does this throughout Jojo World.
- Sonic Colors: Doctor Eggman makes funny announcements over a PA system and occasionally tries to lure Sonic into an obvious trap.
- Assault on Dark Athena: Revas uses the intercom of the Athena to taunt Riddick from time to time. When he hijacks a Mech suit of armor, she does the same with a one-way video uplink.
- Kirby Super Star: In the sub-game Revenge of Meta Knight, the crew of the Halberd airship you're storming would throw threats at Kirby over the intercom while also conversing with themselves. They become increasingly irate the further you go through. In Super Star Ultra, the new sub-game Revenge of the King also has this in Dedede's Castle stage, mainly with Dedede and Bandana Dee.
- In XCOM: Enemy Unknown and XCOM 2, the bosses contact you thelepatically throughout the final mission.