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Overly Long Fighting Animation

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"...bear with me, OK, just a little longer, I'm almost there. Just a few more impressive poses and 3D lighting effects, maybe a lens flare or two just for kicks. Ooh, did you see that? Wow, I'm cool."

An attack animation in which the Rule of Cool is applied in excess, making it just too dang long.

It can be seen sometimes in video games. The Big Bad launches an attack that takes several minutes to land, and it's not plot related. It's just there to show just how awesome the game is.

Another aspect of these is that they tend to show truly apocalyptic levels of destruction, but the environment will be perfectly fine afterward, and casting the spell more than once is usually no problem either. This can be justified by taking the spell's effects to be metaphorical or spiritual, but this doesn't always hold up.

In some cases, those animations can't be even canceled, becoming a nuisance, and disturbing gameplay. Sometimes, it's used as a desperate ploy to make the game feel longer. In general, this is going out of style recently, as developers are realizing that the negative aspects are outweighing the Rule of Cool in the target demographic.

Can lead to the Fridge Logic of "while it's taking so long, Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?".

Unrelated to long-running Shounen anime.


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    Action RPG 
  • Monster Hunter games have had this at times.
    • In the older games, but especially the original and its related versions, Rathalos tends to fly around for what feels like several minutes doing nothing and drawing out fights. Similarly, Black Gravios uses Beam attacks a lot which appears to leave him open, except that he then unleashes a blast very shortly after making it impossible to get in hits without taking damage which will waste a lot of time in a quest.
    • In Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate, several G-rank monsters will spend exorbitant amounts of time enraged and simply spam combos which make players just walk around watching the monster while it goes all ape until it cools down enough to allow the fight to resume. For example, Molten Tigrex spamming up to 4-5 running attacks and/or comboing in a random number of super roars which make it unsafe to try and exploit the obvious opening for fear that he will do it again before the player can move.
    • Monster Hunter: World avoids this for the most part, except for two notably problematic monsters. Bazelgeuse, when enraged, will use an extended version of its "bombing run" attack that can last for nearly 30 seconds. The final boss of the main game, Xeno'jiiva, has a mouth laser that can drag on for almost as long.

    Fighting Game 
  • The BlazBlue series has:
    • Astral Heats, One-Hit Kill moves with 10-20 seconds animations if they connect. Expect players online to Rage Quit while waiting for the Astral Finish animation to play out.
    • Bang's Fu-Rin-Ka-Zan Super Mode suspends gameplay for several seconds while Bang powers up and the BGM announces how awesome he is. Bang players in Calamity Trigger would frequently perform Fu-Rin-Ka-Zan after the match was over, simply to waste their opponents' time.
  • Castlevania: Judgment got harsh criticism by several reviewers for its overly long special attacks (none of which can be skipped).
  • Dragon Ball Legends has Legends Limited characters, in which using their Special Move or Ultimate Arts as the finishing blow will trigger their Legendary Finish animation, usually based on an iconic moment in the Dragon Ball anime. Most of the time, they're short and direct with their references, such as Namek Saga Super Saiyan Goku or Androids #17 & #18. But then, you have characters like Bardock and Full Power Frieza, in which the developers were dead set on making a Shot for Shot Remake of their iconic beatdowns, regardless on how long they last. They can't be skipped, so most opponents in online matches will simply forfeit and hand you the win rather than let the animation play out in full, and the userbase has unanimously agree that people who trigger Legendary Finishes in Co-Ops and Raid events are basically Griefers.
  • Evil Zone did this with some of the more powerful attacks, such as Danzaiver's Kill Sat. The length of the animation changed depending on when and how often you used it: first use would get about ten or twenty seconds, subsequent uses would be shortened to all of five seconds, and a use that would land the killing blow would take even longer.
  • The GHA's in Jojos Bizarre Adventure All Star Battle take forever, often for the sake of recreating the character's signature move in all its glory.
  • Though most hyper combos in Marvel vs. Capcom 3 are fairly short and to-the-point, normal combos can be absurdly long thanks to ground bounces, wall bounces, assist pickups, aerial crossovers, delayed hyper combos, and the infamous "DHC glitch", which completely resets hitstun and damage falloff, effectively doubling the possible length of the combo. These sorts of combos tend to be called "Cutscene Combos" and a skilled player can make them last as long as 30 seconds. All that said, some Level 3 Hypers like Phoenix Wright's can be like actual cutscenes. His in particular involves playing out a 15 second long presentation of decisive evidence and a guilty verdict. With full X-Factor, it's also the strongest Hyper Attack in the game and can take out an opponent in one hit.
  • X-Ray Attacks in Mortal Kombat 9 and X were violent cinematic combo attacks which cost 3 bars of meter but dealt high damage and had armor on start up. However, they weren't especially long and weren't very common at higher levels of play due to meter being better suited for enhanced specials and breakers. 11 reworks them into Fatal Blows, which trades the meter cost for only being available at low health and only being allowed to land once in a match. They become useful at all levels of play either as a panic button for weaker players or adding a massive chunk of damage to combos for more experienced players.
  • Naruto games:
    • In the Naruto: Clash of Ninja games, characters special attacks often take a good few seconds of game time during which nobody could move and the background was darkened out. This can be quite annoying if you're playing a two on two fight with a friend, every time your friend uses a special attack, your character and your opponent disappear and you have to sit and wait for your friend's attack to finish before you can pick up the fight in the second you left off.
    • The First Hokage's Ultimate Jutsu in Naruto: Ultimate Ninja 3 takes about 40 seconds to finish.
    • A sizable number of Ultimate Jutsu in Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 have fairly lengthy animations, but the various Team Ultimates really take the cake. The worst offender has to be the DLC Team Ultimate for the members of the Akatsuki, featuring all ten members (including Orochimaru and not Tobi) taking turns beating the opponent senseless. The entire thing clocks in at a solid 30 seconds, in a game where the default time limit on a fight is only 99- meaning it's literally possible for an entire third of a battle to be devoted to a single attack.
  • In Persona 4: Arena Ultimax, Rise Kujikawa's attack "Risette Live on Stage" causes a rhythm game to start, which can take over 20 seconds, making it the longest-lasting attack in the game.
  • Some players have complained that the KO screen and some characters' Ultra Combo animations in Street Fighter IV take too long. Super Street Fighter IV only looks to exacerbate that problem. Just look at Zangief's new ultra.
  • In Super Cosplay War Ultra, one of the characters has a Super Move where she changes into Kaworu from Neon Genesis Evangelion, hugs the opponent, then the hand of Eva-01 comes to reprise the final scene of Episode 24, squishing the opponent in the process. Even if a human hand with a remote control comes to fast-forward the scene, it's quite annoying if repeated twice in a row.
    • Zenka's MAX Super hits for over half your health bar, so you can easily tell when you're dead and just waiting for Zenka finish already and let you die.
  • Way of the Warrior has an example with a win pose. One of Dragon's wins shows him repeatedly stretching and popping his neck for five unskippable seconds before finally striking a final pose.

    First-Person Shooter 
  • Assassinations in Halo (first introduced in Halo: Reach) just take too damn long. Smart players (except sometimes when they're winning by absurd amounts) just go for the beatdown. The only reward you get for sticking your neck out and potentially losing your kill? A few extra credits. Also, their humiliation, but that's already pretty implicit in getting beatdown anyway.
  • Taunt Kills in Team Fortress 2, which are probably the epitome of Awesome, yet Impractical, they require someone to be oblivious enough to stay right in front of you as you do it, have a loud and very distinct sound before going off and usually don't have any bonus, other than showing off, some that verge slightly less into the impractical bit include the Medic's spinal tap, which gives him a full ubercharge for pulling it off, Heavy's Showdown, which is both long-range and silent until the target's been hit, and Sniper's Skewer, which comes out unfairly fast.
    • The Spy's backstab animation used to suffer from this problem. Originally, when you swing your knife within backstab range, instead of playing the normal stab animation, it would use a much longer attack animation instead. However, you still had to be behind the player when the attack actually lands to register a backstab. Higher level Spy players would preemptively swing the knife right before they get within backstab range to avoid triggering the slow backstab swing animation. This was later fixed by having the Spy prep the backtab when getting within range, and the swing speed is consistent for normal stabs and backstabs.

    Hack and Slash 
  • While it doesn't sound like much compared to other examples on this page, the Amazon's "Impale" attack in Diablo II can take as much as 6 seconds to complete. Problem is, this is a game in which most other melee characters are attacking at speeds of 2-5 attacks per second, and the game is balanced accordingly. Any Impale-based build requires a mercenary or summon to tank so her attacks don't get interrupted before she can land a hit.
  • Letz Shake's Earthquake Generator in No More Heroes takes an obscene amount of time to power up and activate, to the point that Henry is able to swoop in and both destroy it and kill Letz Shake before he can get his attack off. When Letz Shake returns in No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle with his brain powering a new Earthquake Generator, not only is the countdown sequence much faster, but he can even adjust the timer at will to trip Travis up.

    Mecha Game 
  • The Super Robot Wars series is another serious offender. Generally, the more powerful a mecha's attack is, the longer the animation takes. This is assuaged by the fact that the animations tend to be fairly entertaining, plus most of the games in the franchise gives you the option to turn animations off entirely. And more recently, the console iterations have allowed players to double the animation speed during an attack by holding down a button.
    • Evangelion's signature Unison Kick combination attack breaks game mechanics by lasting technically more than one turn (which is defined as 1 minute). Note that while there are attacks that take even longer, the Unison Kick actually has a timer in the lower right of the screen that goes over a minute.
    • Another example is attack of the killer Bonta-kuns, what with the target being mobbed by a dozen mascot/power armor hybrids.
    • Any of GaoGaiGar's attacks takes more than twenty seconds, but Hell and Heaven, Dividing Driver and Goldion Hammer clock at more than 50 seconds each. Ironically, the actual anime is rather unique among for the ability to interrupt attacks.
    • Shin Getter Robo's Getter Change attack lasts almost that much, with 40 seconds (more in some versions).
    • Similarly, Murasame/Hayate/Mugen Liger's Consecutive Evolt lasts roughly a minute five with a Dynamic Kill.
    • Any of the Juddeca's attacks: Final Hell — Judecca breaks at a minute 10 seconds.
    • The Final Dynamic Special deserves special mention in combinations: every iteration is up to a minute or more, but that doesn't prevent it from being awesome.
    • The Valzacard's Exa Nova Shoot OVER. It gets worse when the Dynamic Kill animation is scored.
    • Super Robot Wars Original Generations takes this to an eleven by having nine robots attack a single target.
    • Dis Astranagant's final attack, "Ain Soph Aur", from Super Robot Wars Alpha is a massive 1 minute and 21 seconds long which is long even by the series standards.
    • Super Robot Wars Z has the final attack of the final boss literally taking 1 minute 20 seconds to perform REALLY. Worse, at a certain point, it's his near constant counterattack.
    • Dark Brain anyone?
    • One of Uther's attacks.
    • Before most of these games, Shin Super Robot Wars was the first game with cut-ins, close up face portraits, and long cutscenes in its attack animations. This turns out to be a double edged sword because like all older SRWs up until SRW Alpha, animations are still unskippable. When running at default speed the load times and animations are atrociously long and unbearable. Much of the poor reputation of Shin stems from its slow load times and absurdly long, unskippable animations.
    • Crowe Broust of Super Robot Wars Z2 apparently got flak for almost all of his attacks (especially Clutch Sniper) in Hakai-Hen; his reappearance in Saisei-Hen has the majority of them significantly streamlined.
    • Euzeth Gozzo's Adamatron from 2nd Original Genrations probably takes the throne with its ultimate attack, Eylon Yeda Doma which lasts around 2 minutes 24 seconds.
    • Shu Shirakawa's Neo Granzon's final attack, "Degeneracy Cannon (Shuukutaihou)" takes so long but most people actually tolerate it because a: it's Shu's Neo Granzon, and b: it's just awesome.

  • The "snipe"-class attacks in City of Heroes have a reputation of taking so long to animate that most players either skip them entirely or use them strictly as battle-opening moves. Most of them clock in at around 4.5 seconds to animate — not long in an objective sense, but more than enough time for someone else to defeat your target.
  • Perfect World runs into this with the later Wizard attacks. An example is the ultimate water spell, Black Ice Dragon Strike, which involves the character posing dramatically as a giant dragon made of pure water mana rises out of the ground and divebombs the opponent's head. It sounds like nothing, but the reason it's on the page is because they tried to get around it with the buff "Essential Sutra", which reduces all casting times to zero for a short period of time, but since the Wizard is the textbook definition of Glass Cannon and almost all of the later spells do even more ridiculous amounts of damage...
  • Pretty irritating in the MMORPG Wizard101, aside from the few spells that you actually enjoy watching endlessly. Each round of battle has up to four players and four baddies, and each of these can cast a spell which requires several seconds of animation.

    Platform Game 
  • Lampshaded in Psychonauts in Lungfishopolis, where the boss battle parodies various aspects of Godzilla- and Ultraman-style Japanese monster fights. The enemy announces the titles of each of his attacks as he prepares them, such as "Overlyyy Intricaaate... COMBINATION!" and "Hard to avooooiiiiiidddddd... AREA ATTACK!"

    Real-Time Strategy 
  • Dawn of War has sync kills, where if a unit kills a certain type of unit in melee, it will perform a small animation (the Commissar executes infantry, the Warboss smashes them repeatedly into the ground, the Force Commander does a Colossus Climb on Bloodthirsters, the Wraithlord decapitates Defilers, etc.) The problem is that while they're invincible while doing so, they also won't take orders. If your army is fleeing and your expensive units are lagging behind because they're not done killing, the enemy will inevitably surround them.

    Role-Playing Game 
  • In AdventureQuest:
    • The Nemesis Plate's battle animation takes an incredible eight seconds to perform. This may not seem long, but as the game is turn-by-turn, time builds up quickly.
    • The Guardian Blade's "Guardian Dragon" shows up, makes a quip, and then attacks. The Guardian Blade can also summon Guardian Dragon Jr., which does the same, and if he doesn't do much Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors wise, goes crying home to daddy Guardian Dragon, who then does the above.
    • The Love Machine pet is praised for its useful paralysis effect, but its slow animation made battles drag on. The developers eventually doubled its animation speed to curb complaints.
    • The one animation that does this while being fully worth it in this game however, is the Blade of Awe and its Power Word Die, since it's so powerful it usually saves time anyway.
  • Most attacks — especially special attacks and Mystech — in Anachronox. It's meant as parody, though. A lowly Mook with an assault rifle fires about six thousand bullets in such rapid fire that it creates a veritable waterfall of expended shells? Why not?
    • As further proof of the developers' light-hearted attitude, you could actually speed up the game, fast-forwarding over the acrobatics and camera trickery with the push of a button.
  • Mostly averted in Baten Kaitos, but inverted in the case of Savyna. Her attacks are always very fast, which means she burns through her combos faster than most players can select cards for her. She's probably the most difficult character to use.
    • Played irritatingly straight with the Dance King, a high-level enemy in Baten Kaitos Origins. Its Ring-Around-the-Rosy attack takes almost ten seconds to complete, which doesn't sound like much, but after going through 30+ hours of Origins' blazingly fast battle system, it seems like forever. Doesn't help that the attack itself hurts like hell.
    • Giacomo's normal attack: slow lift off, fly over to you, land, hit you, slow lift off, fly back to spot, land. And he attacks 2 or 3 times per turn. The whole thing takes like 20 or 30 seconds. The kicker? He's That One Boss and those animations will be burned into your mind if you don't take the proper preparations before the fight.
  • Chrono Cross has a few of these, especially the summons. However, this game is notable for including a fast forward button in New Game Plus, which makes fights much more enjoyable when you've seen all the animations anyway.
  • The Dragon Age series has fairly bearable ones for the Coup de Grâce moves, the length of the animation increasing depending on how large the defeated enemy is. The finishers for high dragons in Origins are the longest, with the character performing a complicated 30-second feat of badassery culminating in jumping on the dragon's neck and stabbing it in the head. The Ogre deaths can actually get characters killed, since its buddies are still active at normal speed for the whole thing.
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has slow-motion kill-cams that activate whenever it thinks you are about to kill a target. This generally works well for melee, but for long distance archery, the slo-mo effect just gives enemies more time to beat on you while you helplessly watch the animation. What's worse is that, the top level perk in Archery may paralyze your target instantly, before the arrow even makes it there. This means you can watch your arrow fly in slow motion, then MISS since the paralyze spell made the target fall down before the arrow could hit.
    • If you are using a concentration spell, the spell continues to fire while the kill-cam plays... and you continue to lose magicka. All so it can show the target getting blasted away by a beam of lightning.
    • The master spells in each school have a 4 second two handed cast animation that immobilises the caster. Standing still in a defenseless state in front of the enemies for 4 seconds (or until someone power attacks you and knocks you out of the animation) is a very bad idea. The vast majority of these spells are completely useless.
    • The game may trigger the kill-cam when you cast a point blank explosion spell with a magnitude higher than the health of all enemies in range. This works fine in the vanilla game. Mods may add spells that don't deal damage but still have a magnitude, proudly presenting you with the least appropriately named "kill"-cam in history. (Meanwhile, said enemies are beating you to a pulp).
  • Being an Affectionate Parody of Eastern RPGs, the Epic Battle Fantasy series has some of these. Luckily, they're fun to watch. Examples include:
    • The Catastrophe Summon in the first game.
    • Ion, a Summon in the second game and a Limit Break for Lance in the third game
    • Nuke, Used by Lance in both the second and third games. It's a Limit Break in the third game.
    • Natalie's Genesis Limit Break in the third game, in a Shout-Out to Neon Genesis Evangelion.
    • Matt's Limit Breaks are actually relatively short. The one that comes closest to this is Ragnarok, which is basically a shorter version of the Catastrophe summon from the first game that doesn't damage the player.
  • The VATS combat animations in Fallout 3. Possibly to dissuade players from using VATS all the time, but if you've grown up with the battle system of the first two games or want to use a stealth-based character it's kind of hard.
    • Fallout: New Vegas makes real-time combat more viable, but also adds a chance to trigger a VATS-style slow-mo killcam on kills. Thankfully this can be turned off, however.
  • The Final Fantasy series does this often:
    • Even without flashy animations, the original NES version of Final Fantasy definitely qualifies, with group-affecting spells slowly affecting one character/enemy at a time, which can cause fights to take forever.
    • Though the animations don't start getting minutes long until Final Fantasy VII, in Final Fantasy VI Kefka's Goner/Forsaken is about as proportionally long to the game's other attacks as Supernova is to the normal animations in VII, clocking in at approximately 20 seconds long when most other high-tier spell animations are about 6 seconds long.
    • Final Fantasy VII's Summon Magic is notorious for this. The PS4 rerelease of the game has a fast-forward feature that allows players to breeze through the excessive animations.
      • Knights of the Round. If you equip the W-Summon materia as well (which lets you summon twice in a single turn), and summon Knights twice in a turn, you can leave the game running, go make a sandwich, and come back with time to spare. Or you can equip the other two party members with Mimic Materia, allowing you to summon Knights three times in a row.
      • Sadly, the game doesn't let you link Knights to the Quadra-Magic Materia, which casts or summons the linked Materia four times in a single turn, so you won't be able to leave it running and go cook dinner for your family. However, it does allow you to Quadra-summon Bahamut Zero, which isn't all that much shorter (54 seconds compared to KotR's 1:10.)
      • Sephiroth's ultimate attack, Super Nova, which is shown to destroy the solar system (by literally causing the sun to go Super Nova) every time he did it, clocks at 2 minutes and can't be canceled. It's not even a lethal attack; it's just a glorified Percent Damage Attacknote  Interestingly, the original version of Supernova is only about 20 seconds long. This, however, resulted in it being pretty underwhelming for a Final Boss' Final Attack, which is probably why they changed it.
    • In Final Fantasy VIII you can use that time to empower Guardian Forces through Button Mashing, if you have the Boost skill. This doesn't make it any less annoying; thus, this was the last FF game with no skippable animations. The animation time varies greatly between the different GFs, with the longest one going to Eden, an optional GF that launches the unfortunate victim into the center of a spiral galaxy, which it then destroys, rivaling Sephiroth's Super Nova attack animation in length. The animations of the other GFs generally range between 20 and 60 seconds.
    • Final Fantasy IX:
      • Almost every summon. Each one has a shortened version that runs about 75% of the time after the first use (which is always the full animation). The reappearance of the longer animation means that the attack will be more effective (offensive summons do more damage, support summons cause more positive status effects, etc). Ark in particular takes so long that people don't usually use it to cause damage — it's better to cast Regen on the party and let everyone heal while waiting the three minutes (ish) it takes for the giant Transformer to do its thing. Interestingly, the Summoners in IX each get an ability called "Boost" to make sure the longer animation plays, so you can more reliably take advantage of the higher damage.
      • This is actually the trick to easily defeat Ozma, the superboss. His constant barrage of attacks is because he has a special battle script that gives him a free turn every time the player inputs a command while he's idle. Idle means not in the middle of an attack animation. While he's casting Doomsday which has a several second long animation, that's your chance to get a full round in without him being able to get 4 free actions.
    • Final Fantasy X:
      • Every Aeon's initial summoning and Overdrive, with the biggest offender being the Magus Sisters' Delta Attack. Thankfully, the option to use shortened cutscenes exists, but you can't shorten enemy Aeons' summoning or overdrive sequences when you fight them.
      • Ultima's multiple explosions take about ten times as long as any other black magic spell, which is a nuisance given that you will likely doublecast it many, many times between unlocking it and reaching max level. They do look very cool the first five or six times...the next five or six thousand, less so. Lulu's Ultima Fury will animate each successive Ultima spell shortened, but Demi Fury will play through all of them in full.
    • You can shorten dressphere changes in Final Fantasy X-2. However, you can't shorten enemy Aeons' summoning or overdrive sequences when you fight them.
    • The Gaiden Game Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII has its share of really long summon animations. But they can be skipped. Nothing you can do about the Limit Breaks, though.
      • Even better, the summons are actual FMVs. The Limit Break animations are pretty short, though, thankfully.
    • In Final Fantasy XII, the Quickening animations provide you an opportunity to charge and queue other Quickenings, allowing massive combo attacks. Also, the Esper summoning animations are rather short in this game.
    • In Final Fantasy XIII, Eidolons have relatively lengthy summoning and transformation scenes, but thankfully you can skip them. Their finishing attacks in Gestalt Mode however cannot be skipped, but are not too long. Every character also has a Full ATB Skill, although they are also kept short and the action doesn't stop.
      • Taking advantage of this is actually required to beat the first fight with Barthandelus; his Destrudo has a ludicrously long charging animation, and if you don't do a certain amount of damage to him during the animation to break his concentration, Destrudo is a guaranteed party wipe.
      • Heartless Angel in Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII takes about ten seconds to perform, during which Bhunivelze will perform no other attacks. This doesn't stop Lightning from beating the snot out of him while the animation is going. Just make sure to guard before it hits.
    • Final Fantasy XIV:
      • In Heavensward, Knights of the Round is used against you by King Thordan, and it's an equally lengthy sequence of him summoning knights to attack you — though this time, you can dodge some of the attacks and fight back. Fittingly enough, King Thordan is pretty put off if you survive it.
      • Shadowbringers faithfully recreates the animation for Eden’s Eternal Breath attack, letting players spend almost a minute watching as their characters get launched into the heart of another galaxy.
    • Final Fantasy Tactics: While spell animations aren't nearly as over-the-top as other games, more powerful spells still have flashier effects; in particular, Meteor and all Summons (Zodiack/Zodiark being the most powerful and therefore taking the longest) can cause massive slowdown due to the number of particle effects on screen.
  • Both Golden Sun games have long animations on the more powerful summons late in the game, but luckily, they can all be skipped.
    • And unless you really enjoy beating the A button to death, the Sol Blade's summon can get boring, fast. Not to mention that it's possible to have a setup that allows unleashing 100% of the time, as well as Sol Blade's unleash being the strongest non-summon attack in the game...
    • The third game, Golden Sun: Dark Dawn, also have longer summon animations on the more powerful ones, which can be made all the faster by using the B button. The same applies to any of the weapons' Unleash effects.
  • Grandia II has a lot of 10-second and longer attacks. Even the basic lightning spell takes several seconds to show the character conjuring up balls of lightning, and them another several seconds of said balls swirling around the enemies. And these are the most basic spells, which you'll be using a lot. The camera panning over to the character performing the spell can eat up more precious time too.
  • The Legend of Dragoon is like this, especially for Dragoon Magic. You can shorten most of the tranformation sequences, but none of the attack sequences.
  • The way the combat in the Legend of Legaia series works is that the player inputs a series of high, low, left, or right side attacks with certain combos resulting is special attacks which can even be strung together. The higher a character's level the more attacks they can use in a single turn. While this is useful for dealing high amounts of damage, it also meant that you can catch up on your reading while going through the final dungeon. It also has the Juggernaut summon animation, but since you can only get it after you grind everyone to level 99, you'll be only using it for its animation anyway.
  • In Neverwinter Nights 2 the magic animations took so long that your enemies would frequently be out of the blast radius before the spell struck. Even supposed 'instantaneous' spells like Magic Missile could be seen looping back and around to the target because of the silly animation. Not to mention the combat attacks took so long that many were done 'invisibly' for high level characters to make sure they happened inside the round.
  • Parasite Eve has the final ability, Liberation, be extremely powerful to enemies, but at the expense of watching Aya kick ass for over 10 seconds. Luckily, you wouldn't see this too often due to the ability needing a full PE bar to use.
  • In Planescape: Torment some of the high-level spells (Mechanus Cannon, Meteor Shower and especially Celestial Host) could have annoyingly long animations. The later involved a quadruple Summon Magic. Fortunately, they're all skipable, which keeps things from dragging on too long if you use them in conjunction with Enol Eva's Duplication (a hidden spell that allows you to cast all your spells twice for a short time).
  • Skies of Arcadia gives every playable character some of these with their Special Attacks. At least they can be skipped if you press the button early-on in the animation after the first time you see them. Sadly, the Combined Energy Attacks, Prophecy and Blue Rogues, can't be skipped. You also can't skip the magic spell animations, or any of the enemies' attack animations, some of which are even longer than your party's.
  • Star Ocean: The Second Story has a number of ultimate elemental spells that result in the battle pausing to display the animation. Normally this isn't a big deal. It becomes a big deal when the AI controlled characters use the spells over and over and over and over. In addition, one of starting character Rena's first spells, Magic Hammer, is entirely useless, is her favorite spell, and also stops the battle every time it's cast. Which, unless you prevent her from casting it at all, will be five or six times per battle. This was heavily toned down in the remake.
    • Fortunately, the animation gets sped up the more you use it.
  • The Tales series. Can you say Hi-Ougi / Mystic Arte? Around Tales of Destiny 2, when the concept became cemented, these killer moves went from being merely a very strong attack (Meikuu Zanshouken and Aurora Sword) to involving time freezing, character portraits, light shows, and excessively large areas and long combos.
    • Particularly notorious is Richter's in Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World, which he executes after claiming "Pain will only last an instant."
      • Another offender is Emil's, in the same game. The player can add 15 extra seconds of animation by triggering Ain Soph Aur. And then another 30 seconds if you're fighting Richter, as he counters it! On the bright (?) side, Ain Soph Aur is completely underpowered and costs an arm to cast, so nobody ever uses it anyway.
  • Valkyrie Profile, max level Nibelung Valesti.
    • VP was borderline on this with most finishing moves (noting a few exceptions). Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria had nearly every finishing move be like this (and twice as excessive power wise), but at least you can skip them.
    • Covenant of the Plume likewise allows you to skip Soul Crush animations with the press of a button.
      • In general, normal attacks in the entire series are short and painless, and stringing them together is the core combat mechanic to begin with.
  • The attacks learned late in the games of the Xenosaga series. Particularly annoying are KOS-MOS's attacks, since chances are she'll be in your party most of the time. Being a robot, for several of her attacks she physically transforms herself, which takes quite a lot of time, and with her standing directly in front of the enemy for physical attacks, you wonder why the enemy sits there and waits for it.
    • In the first game, every attack could be this thanks to how long it took for characters to aim their weapon and attack. Shion could be a particularly bad offender in this regard.
    • Erde Kaiser's sequence in Episode 1 clocks in at 1 minute. It also adds up as a Transformation Sequence of a Combining Mecha.
    • The fights are fast-paced in Episode 3 compared to Episode 1. On the other hand, some special attacks can last a lot longer than others. Then there's the Erde Kaisers. Their sequences are a lot shorter than the original one, but Erde Kaiser Sigma takes the cake by being the longest. It doesn't stop it from being awesome.

  • In Judgement Silversword, Mitsurugi Rebirth has an attack that launches homing orbs at you. Normally, getting killed causes your ship to go through a brief explosion animation before respawning (if you have lives left), but getting caught in this particular attack triggers a 10-second cutscene in which Mitsurugi surveys its victim from multiple angles, Michelangelo's Final Judgement takes over the background, and then as the screen fades to white, Mitsurugi does a wind-up with its sword and then finally kills you.

    Sim Game 
  • Most of the time in the Black & White series, you really don't have to worry about uncontrollable cutscenes until you start or finish a quest scroll. This carries over into the sequel nicely. And then the Wonders start getting built... Although skipable after the first go-round, the first time one of these wonder-miracles goes off — or you get hit with a bug — prepare to sit there and watch every, last, frame of the siren rising up, speaking in creepily-lovey-dovey ways to your soldiers, sending out a swarm of MINI sirens who... seem quite fond of them, and your soldiers converting to enemy citizens. This also applies to the volcano miracle at the start and later in the game, fortunately not the earthquake or hurricane.

    Sports Game 
  • The Power Shots in Mario Power Tennis. Whenever they happen, all action freezes except the player who executed the shot. Gameplay only returns to normal just as the animation is about to end. You can't skip any of the animations, and what's worse, there are actually two types of Power Shots (offensive and defensive).
    • Waluigi's defensive move is a ridiculous time-drain. He somehow fills his entire side of the court with a shallow layer of water, so the tennis ball doesn't hit the ground, and then hits back. Also, the power shots are needless at least 90% of the time; usually if you have one, so does your opponent. If you do a defensive power shot, they'll follow up with an offensive one. If you do an offensive power shot, they'll follow up with either offensive or defensive depending on whether they can reach it.
  • In Touhou Soccer, several characters possess cinematic shots. While most of those have a reasonable length, some are pretty long. Mima's Twilight Spark in particular, has a cinematic that lasts about fifty seconds, and that's not counting the actual shot that comes after the cinematic.

    Tower Defense 
  • The Battle Cats has a few units and enemies with painfully long attack animations — made worse by the fact that Knockback effects will reset them.
    • Bahamut Cat's animation has him slowly charge up a ball of dark energy above him, then throw it into the ground, creating an explosion. This takes 4 seconds to complete, which doesn't sound so bad... but when the enemies are pushing forward and killing your meatshields quickly, those 4 seconds matter, and it's not uncommon to see Bahamut get knocked back or die before he can complete it. On the flip side, if the enemies he's targeting get knocked back, Bahamut will complete his attack animation and damage absolutely nothing, and you'll have to wait 16 seconds for him to get to try again.
    • Super Galaxy Cosmo's attack animation has him do lots of poses reminiscent of a Tokusatsu anime, fire energy blasts into the air to create a constellation, and then finally charge up and fire a crane-shaped Kamehame Hadoken. This entire animation takes about 10 seconds to complete, during which his intended target is liable to be knocked out of the way.
    • Filibuster Obstructa, to attack, starts charging up an energy ball, which very slowly grows in size while emitting flashes of lightning. Eventually, it grows big enough that it starts vacuuming up planets and absorbing them, before the boss finally throws it towards the ground and creates a gigantic explosion. This takes 40 seconds to execute — indeed, the only way to beat it is to prevent it from ever getting an attack off. The Cat version, Filibuster Cat X, "only" takes 12 seconds to execute its attack, mercifully.

    Turn-Based Strategy 
  • Most attacks in Fire Emblem games are fairly quick, but some spells, especially dark spells, legendary tomes and anything used by a final or semi-final boss, take forever and involve vortexes, background changes and other nonsense, and can be used twice in a row if the defender has low speed and survives the first. Luckily, they can be turned off.
    • This takes a bizarre turn in Fire Emblem: Awakening. Most magic spells are actually relatively short and behave like normal attacks. However, for some reason, the character animations are incredibly slow, moving at about half the speed of what normal humans would move at. Thankfully there's an option to fast-forward combat, but the fact that it's necessary to fastforward at all makes combat animations feel incredibly awkward.
  • In Heroes of Might and Magic 5, the Ranger's attack, a simple bow shot, can take several seconds to complete — the exact time based on what your combat animation speed is set to. This is a strategy game, so expect to use it every 20 seconds in combat if you play as the Elves.
  • Nippon Ichi games' attack animations tend to get longer and more over the top for spells and abilities that cost more MP; in a few of these games, the animation can be turned off either (or both) your party and the enemies'.
    • Some also allow for selective skipping of attacks, for those who enjoy seeing particular animations.
    • Played for outright parody with Usalia and Christo's combo skill, where Christo and Usalia's prinny open fire upon the enemy while Usalia herself casually walks over, eats some curry, and walks back to her prinny throughout the entire animation. The move itself is named "Curry Break".
  • Suikoden II had Chaco, who's attack animation was about three times as long as everyone elses. Using him could waste hours in the long run.
    • Along with Sid, who used the same animation. However, given the way battle works in Suikoden II, it's entirely possible for their attacks to take just long enough for the round to long as everyone else is also just attacking.
  • Naturally, in a Shout-Out to Super Robot Wars, Battle Moon Wars also has its more powerful attacks running a bit too long.

    Wide Open Sandbox  
  • Subverted in No More Heroes, when Letz Shake's "Disaster Blaster" Earthquake Generator goes through the long, fancy charging-up cinematic, and then just as it's about to fire, Henry appears out of nowhere and cuts Letz Shake and the Disaster Blaster to pieces.
    • Played straight with Henry's instant-kill move, thought it's pretty awesome to see anyway.

Non-video game examples:

    Anime and Manga 
  • Parodied in The Big O. Beck's latest creation began a lengthy attack prep, with flashing lights, yelling, and dramatic posturing... only for his opponent to whip out a machine gun and blast his pseudo-Megadeus into scrap metal in a few seconds.
  • In Dragon Ball Z, Piccolo's Special Beam Cannon at the start of the series takes five minutes to charge. Near the end of the series Super Saiyan 3 is introduced, which can take over ten minutes to use. Worst offender of the series would have to be the Spirit Bomb, which can take, in some uses, several episodes to complete!
  • Most offensive magic spells in Negima! Magister Negi Magi take a long time to cast, which requires mages to partner up with a melee fighter to protect them and buy time for them to get their spells off. Eventually, once a mage gets powerful enough they not only get their spells out faster, but they typically learn to fight in melee themselves and no longer need someone to buy time for them.
  • Ninja Nonsense parodies this; Episode 11 has Sasuke using his "special attack" on an ogre. It involves lots of posing, as well as Sasuke inexplicably flying through space while explaining the attack. Then Onsokumaru tells him to keep it shorts, at which point we find out what the end result of the attack is: the ogre getting stuffed in a pair of underwear filled with mustard.
  • In One Piece Jinbe's Karakusagawara Seiken. In the manga the shock wave took four panels to take effect after throwing the punch, in the anime it almost a full minute.
  • Dragon Slave from Slayers is one of the strongest offensive spells in the series, which is balanced out by the caster needing to recite an extremely long incantation before it can be cast.
  • Parodied in episode one of The Tower of Druaga — The Aegis of Uruk. "Soniiiiiiiiiiiiiii(30 seconds)iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiic BLADE!"
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V has Raidraptor - Satellite Cannon Falcon, whose attack takes several minutes to fully execute and involves it flying up into orbit, charging up power, and then firing a giant laser that takes a few seconds to make contact with the target, which is promptly left in a smoldering crater.

    Live-Action TV 

    Web Animation 
  • DEATH BATTLE!Sephiroth vs. Vergil: Sephiroth casts his signature Supernova, but actually averts this trope in a clever way by casting it earlier on, using his Master of Illusion powers to mask said long animation from Vergil, and only breaking the illusion to reveal the attack when it's too late for Vergil to escape unscathed from it. As such, viewers only see 10 seconds from the end part of the animation.


    Western Animation 
  • On Aqua Teen Hunger Force, the Mooninites (who look sort of like pixelated video-game people) have their ultimate attack, the Quad Laser. The Quad Laser (and its larger cousin, the Quad Glacier) creates a single giant pixel that moves at a snail's pace. This isn't really a cutscene, but it is a finishing move that takes a ridiculously long time.
    • And can be thwarted by the target simply stepping out of its path... unless the pixel bounces off something and hits the target in the back.


Video Example(s):


Card Mode Vs. Monster Mode

A rare optional example. Pressing the Cross button when targeting an enemy card will have a simple animation to signify the attack, but pressing the Square button will start a sequence where the monsters are summoned as 3D models.

How well does it match the trope?

4.67 (9 votes)

Example of:

Main / OverlyLongFightingAnimation

Media sources: