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Simple, yet Awesome

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Other weapons were axed for being more complicated.
A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.

Sometimes the simple solutions are the best ones. Though the best solutions are sometimes the boring ones, occasionally they achieve a sort of elegance that keeps them from being dull. Although lacking the over-the-top badassery and flashy visual effects that would make it Awesome, but Impractical, their very simplicity gives them a sort of awesomeness all their own. These are timeless answers to enduring problems, and can always be relied on to do what needs to be done, without needing pointless ostentation to call attention to themselves. Where other things come and go, things that are Simple, yet Awesome endure.

Less impressive than Awesome, but Impractical, but not as dull as Boring, but Practical. Something that's Simple, yet Awesome is something that you'll find yourself using over and over again, and enjoying it.

Compare Simple, yet Opulent. See Cutting the Knot for puzzles solved this way. In games, this can overlap with Vanilla Unit and Unskilled, but Strong.


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  • Commercials for Breyers ice cream like this one focus on the simplicity of the product's ingredients and why that makes it good.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Attack on Titan:
    • The Titan Guillotine. Not only is it able to kill Titans of any size with a single blow, it does so without needlessly endangering other soldiers. This ended up being used to eliminate all remaining Titans within the Walls after Eren and the Survey Corps successfully reclaimed Wall Maria and by extension, the rest of Paradis Island.
    • The Rumbling is a Weapon of Mass Destruction that could end all life on the planet and wipes out most of humanity. It simply consists of countless Colossus Titans walking forward and stepping on everything in their path.
  • Dragon Ball: The most useful technique in the entire franchise is none other than the humble Taiyoken, or Solar Flare, a non-damaging technique that temporarily blinds the opponent and never stops being useful, all the way from the original series through GT. Your enemy can punch teleport? Solar Flare. Your enemy can regenerate? Solar Flare. Your enemy is a thousand times stronger than you are? Solar Flare. If your enemy has eyes, it will work.
    • Also, Krillin's Kienzan, or Destructo Disc. A weak attack honed to absurd sharpness, it never fails to cut through whatever it encounters. It's especially effective against arrogant bruisers who assume that they can No-Sell it because they have many times Krillin's power. The only reason he's never managed to kill a main villain with it is that they always catch on at the last second and dodge. It really says something that, in spite of Freeza being so much more powerful than he is, Krillin's Kienzan is able to cut off Freeza's tail. Given that Krillin can't so much as scratch Freeza with other attacks, it gives you an idea of just how effective this attack can be. Freeza later uses a similar, but remote guided, attack, in his fight against Super Saiyan Goku. Until Cell comes along, there is no one, but no one, who could survive a blow to a critical area from this attack, and the scene of Perfect Cell resisting the attack was anime-only filler and has been deemed non-canon; canonically the Kienzan can cut through anything. In fact the only reason it stops being useful is when enemies who are able to regenerate started popping up, rendering its ability to cut them a non-issue.
    • Piccolo's "Special Beam Cannon" or "Makankōsappō" is another example. It's not insanely powerful, or flashy. It's simply a powerful blast condensed into a shot the size of a handgun bullet... and has been used to kill enemies much stronger than he is, and that can No-Sell most of his other attacks. It started as Awesome, but Impractical due to its five-minute charge time, but further training obviated that drawback and turned it into this.
    • The initial Super Saiyan transformation could count as well. Despite there being more levels beyond it, the first level continues to be the most used transformation among the Saiyan protagonists. This trope is kind of spelled out in the Android Saga by Goku. Vegeta and Trunks opt for more powerful, but severely draining transformations while Goku and Gohan decide to train their control over the initial transformation to better conserve their energy. As a result, Goku and Gohan end up more powerful (in the case of Gohan, far more powerful) than either Trunks or Vegeta and have the greatest chances of defeating Cell.
      • Taken to the logical extreme years later, where Word of God stated that there wouldn't be any (true) Super Saiyan forms past Super Saiyan 3. Instead they would train their bodies in their base form and make use of the less taxing Super Saiyan 1 transformation to give them the appropriate bonuses, instead of the more taxing forms. Presumably as Super Saiyan God and Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan (better known as Super Saiyan Blue) are basically base form and Super Saiyan for gods, this holds true for these forms as well.
      • In the Dragon Ball GT universe though, there is Super Saiyan 4. However, the requirements and usage make it unique. More practical than 3, the state resembles having chest fur and a longer tail, looking like Oozaru elements have been mixed in, giving a unique yet powerful look.note 
    • Tenshinhan's Tri-Beam. A triangular energy blast that leaves a square shaped hole. It is, more or less, just a powerful burst of energy that covers a fairly wide area. It is more or less the opposite of the Special Beam Cannon, and it is more or less just a blast of force more than anything. Tenshinhan is one of the characters who Can't Catch Up, and seems like he cannot contribute anything during the Cell Saga... up until he confronts a Semi-Perfect Cell, and proves that, while he can't stop Cell, he can at least stop him from moving by using this attack to pound Cell into the ground like a nail over and over. Cell cannot move fast enough to evade the blows (Since they cover such a wide area), and while they don't actually hurt him, they're powerful enough to keep pushing him down further and further. The only reason that Cell was eventually able to escape was because Tenshinhan eventually ran out of stamina.
    • Dragon Ball Super's Ultra Instinct is shaping up to be this. Difficult for even gods to achieve, it is based on Mushin (無心 lit. "Empty Mind").note  Not limited to gods, it allows one to fighting without consciously thinking and be free from all distractions. Goku's strength has increased dramatically from being able to enter an incomplete state of it (he's able to do it defensively, but still consciously thinks on attacking and still requires a lot for him to use it). A good example of someone who has mastered is none other than Whis (though it's implied all the Angels know it or at least can learn naturally compared to the Gods and mortals.)
  • A few alchemists in Fullmetal Alchemist are capable of performing transmutation by clapping their hands together and touching the matter to be transmutes. Instead of having to draw a circle on the fly or having a reusable circle filled with alchemical equation, the clapping motion makes a circle out of their body and they fill in the details mentally. Note that this may be a Subversion, because while people have remarked that the technique is convenient, it is actually a more advanced form of alchemy, and obtaining the knowledge to perform said technique is decidedly not a trivial matter.
  • Gushing Over Magical Girls: Sister Gigant's power to change her size at will might not seem showy or impressive compared to the rest of the magical girls (minus Magenta) but is an absolute menace with them. Because of how varied her ability is, she can easily trample countless magical girls to death by smacking them around as a giantess or be hidden from plain sight by shrinking down in order to lay low. As a result, the utility of her powers made her one of the most powerful magical girls alive in which Venalita considers her as an invaluable Dragon for his plans.
  • In Hellsing, Captain Pip Bernadotte and his Wild Geese prove that you don't need to be a supernatural ultra-badass to take down vampires. They do it with conventional military tactics — open ground seeded with land mines and covered by machine gun positions, only modified by having blessed (and potentially silver-based) ammunition.
    • In fact, they would have picked off the whole army had Zorin Blitz not arrived and used her nightmarish illusion powers to leave the Wild Geese in psychological shambles and thus vulnerable to the remnants of the army.
  • Holyland is all about straightforward, effective moves for surviving street fights. It's still really awesome.
  • If Fate/Zero taught us something, is that Firearms are a great way to deal with Mages.
    • Also: the enemy has fortified the upper floors of a hotel in such a way they're impassable? Just blow up the hotel.
  • The simple Kunai and Explosive Tag combo from Naruto. Explosive Tags are explosives made of paper, and can easily be made to be as strong as a hand grenade or a cannon shell. Kunai can be extremely sharp in the Narutoverse and are still used even against strong enemies. Combine the two and you got a stabbing exploding weapon. Naruto combines this with the 'Thousand Years of Death' to jam an kunai with an explosive tag wrapped around its handle right into partially transformed Gaara's rear... and... BOOM! Weakened him enough that he'd need to fully transform! Not only that, explosive tags can be used for more mundane purposes and can be stored safely-they only activate through chakra thus, fire can't set them off (unless purposely designed that way), they can be stored in the hottest, driest, or even wettest areas in the Narutoverse and still work. And Konan combines 600,000,000,000 Explosive Tags with her Paper Person of God technique for 10 minutes straight of explosions.
  • My Hero Academia:
    • People with the One for All ability can give their own strength and the quirk to another person, meaning that if a body-builder were to have this power and pass it on to someone else, they would have the same strength as the body-builder plus the strength they had to begin with. But due to this power being passed down from multiple generations of heroes, One for All ends up becoming absurdly powerful, almost enough to destroy most people that are hit by a direct punch from those who know how to use it. The drawback? There is currently so much power stored up by the quirk that a normal person would probably die if they were next in line to inherit the quirk without proper training.
    • Shota Aizawa's quirk, Erase, lets him disable the quirks of anyone he's looking at without even getting within arms length. The only flaw is that it gives him dry eye if used a lot, which is easily fixed with the eye drops he has on him at all times.
    • Tetsutetu's Quirk, Steel, lets him turn into steel. During the Joint Training Arc, he reveals that he can withstand extreme temperatures by training himself inside a hearth, allowing him to barrel through Todoroki's ice barrier, knock him through a pipe and withstand his flames, forcing Todoroki to increase their heat (at risk of burning himself) and narrowly avoid losing.
  • One of Oda Nobunaga's earliest goals in Drifters is to try and produce gunpowder and matchlocks with whatever little resource available he has. As both he and Toshiro explain, the true value of fire arms is in how easy they are to use. Allowing even a peasant to kill a fully trained soldier with only a bit of practice.
  • In Sailor Moon, Minako Aino/Sailor Venus is a repeat user:
    • In the old anime, the Crescent Beam: while the other Sailor Soldiers got new and more powerful attacks all the time, Sailor Venus stuck to her first attack up to late in the fourth season because it was just that effective, being a thin blast of energy fired from the finger that, similar to Dragon Ball's Special Beam Cannon above, was just so concentrated that it could pierce through almost any enemy, with the option to fire a literal shower of them just in case, as the one exception found out the hard way.
    • The manga shows that Minako is so formidably strong to knock out Makoto (who has explicitely Super-Strength even untransformed) with a single kick, and Codename: Sailor V shows how it happened: pure physical training and over a year spent beating youma nearly to death with her hands and feet, with the implication she had previous martial arts training in her Mysterious Past.
  • In Rebuild World, the AAH assault rifle is regarded in the same light as the AK-47 in real life. It's a rifle model with a hundred years of history that's renowned for being inexpensive, easy-to-use, and reliable. While it's far from the strongest firearm available to a hunter, it's popular because of its cheapness, ability to fire semi-automatic and full-auto, and decent stopping power. Even first-class hunters have at least one in their arsenal and many have an Ace Custom variant manufactured to their specifications. To some, an AAH rifle is essentially a Good Luck Charm on top of doubling as an excellent Emergency Weapon.
  • Instead of traditional magic, Asta from Black Clover has enhanced physical capabilities and 2 swords that can nullify any magic they slice through. He can also deflect magic spells with one and fire magic destroying waves of energy with the other.
  • As a manga on wrestling, Tiger Mask has plenty of flashy moves from all characters... Except Lionman, who uses basic moves he honed to perfection and his immense strength. He's one of Tiger Mask's most formidable opponents.
  • Jujutsu Kaisen:
    • Aoi Todo's Cursed Technique, Boogie Woogie, swaps his position with someone or something else every time he claps his hands. It's incredibly useful, as it lets Aoi do anything from tricking an opponent into impaling themselves on their own weapons to pulling off some fast-paced and very confusing team-up attacks.
    • Ryomen Sukuna's primary Cursed Techniques, Dismantle and Cleave, cut things. And that is all he needed to be the most vicious evil in human history. The Shibuya Incident shows just how devestating his seemingly simple abilities are, when he uses his cuts to disintigrate everything in a 140-meter-radius.

    Comic Books 
  • In a meta sense the superpowers which tend to get used most often fall into this trope. Which is likely the reason various writers use them over and over instead of inventing new power sets that are harder to utilise. A few examples:
    • Firstly there’s a reason so many superpowered heroes and villains are Flying Bricks. Being able to hit hard, not take damage, and move in an axis most humans can’t without fancy tech, puts a character at a big advantage in your average battle. The best example is obviously Superman, whose only real weaknesses are characters with powersets which can bypass his own such as magic or mind control. Heck, one of the reasons they gave him his famous vulnerability to green kryptonite was because otherwise he was just too good for most of his opponents to be a threat to him.
    • Superspeed. If an opponent can be disarmed and subdued before they can even blink, they stop being a threat pretty damn quickly.
    • Telekinesis and telepathy. Typically all the user needs is to be able to see (or sense) something or someone to affect it with their psychic powers. Taken to the next level if the person also has Mind Control and is ruthless enough to use it to its full potential.
    • Any kind of elemental powers, particularly if the user can manifest them at will. Usually all a hero or villain needs to do is point and boom; their target is set on fire, frozen solid, blown away, etc.
    • Transformation. Even if it’s limited to the animal kingdom, it still gives the user a crazy amount of forms to choose from and access to all their strengths. If it goes further and the shapeshifter can change into other things - other people, self propelled weapons and heavy machinery, even forces of nature - it gets even more broken.
  • Batman does things like this occasionally.
    • One issue of The Batman Strikes had Batman defeating villain Black Mask by walking into his lair and... putting on a recording of Bruce Wayne offering his henchmen jobs, with real health insurance and legal representation. Without Mooks, there wasn't much that Black Mask could do.
    • Batman also once took down the Injustice League by paying off Mirror Master and donating to the orphanage he grew up in. Every once in a while, being one of the wealthiest men in The DCU comes in handy.
  • Early on in Chris Claremont's first X-Men run, the X-Men have to fight a bad guy who's on a space station. Does Claremont give us a hypertech Reed Richards-designed ship? No, we get six pages of a midnight launch of an ordinary space shuttle that make it seem just as cool as anything out of sci-fi.
    • Speaking of the X-Men, there's Cyclops. Most characters' powers get a lot fancier than simple Eye Beams, but Scott can deliver the equivalent of a Hulk-grade punch to anything within in his field of vision at will. If he takes off his visor, make that everything in his field of vision. That power is pretty much never not useful, and few enemies have any kind of immunity to it.
  • Paperinik New Adventures has a few examples:
    • Klangor is an Evronian cyborg Super-Soldier with the firepower of an armored battalion and an impressive ability to absorb energy attacks, enough to actually shrug off one of Xadhoom's lighter blasts-one that would have disintegrated a small warship. We meet him in The Well, Evron's planet prison where he had been thrown in for mutinying and being too useful to kill. How did the Evronians defeat him without killing him when, as he explains, he has still more than enough firepower to blast his way through the entire garrison? A remote-controlled off switch (the garrison has the remote). He's still sore about it.
    • Paperinik's main weapon is the Extransformer Shield, with an immense number of features, including a small laser, a much larger laser, an anti-gravity beam, a weapon that reads your thoughts and projects a hologram of your worst fears, a weapon that forcefully teleports you far away (the rare times it works), a minisub form, and many more. What are the ones Paperinik uses most often? Shield, paralyzer beam, the rocket for flying around, and the extensible punch, perfect for defense, movement, capturing enemies alive, and smashing things.
      • This comes from the "classic" stories, where Paperinik's most used gadgets are a paralyzer beam pistol (that is one-shot in case someone steals it), a spring-loaded punch in the belt, rockets on the belt, plastic masks, and spring-heeled boots to jump really high. Those gadgets allowed him to become so feared by Duckburg's criminals that by now when they're caught in the act they surrender on the spot and go to the police to turn themselves in after a quick and nice chat, because they know perfectly they will get arrested, but this way they at least dodge the savage beating. And while he sometimes need other gadgets for the stronger or more cunning criminals, many of them follow the same approach, such as the Tele-Ultra (that uses ultrasounds to shut down electric devices. Any electric device).
      • Some of Paperinik's "classic" devices show up in PKNA, such as the belt rockets and the masks. The rockets allowed him to escape when an Evronian warship blew up the building he was on, and the masks allowed him to sneak into places that are defended against more sophisticated disguises (such as a research center the Time Police kept under surveillance-the Raider had tried to enter using holographic disguises and other hi-tech methods, and Paperinik gave him a mask and a nice suit and they entered from the main door, with Paperinik hidden in a gym bag).
  • In every version of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Donatello uses one of the most primitive of weapons, a wooden bo staff, yet is just as badass as the other three Turtles.
    • In the 2012 animated series, he gets an equally effective and simple weapon, a naginata. Furthermore, the staff merely has a retractable blade, allowing the switch between the two easily (the same way Mikey's nunchunks have retractable blades to become kusarigara.)
  • Jay Garrick's helmet. It's a bit goofy looking, but he keeps it because it's important to him. DC keeps it because it's just iconic. Geoff Johns seems to make it a point to have Jay use the helmet in a practical way whenever he writes Jay; In JSA Jay used it to reflect light onto a shadow powered enemy, in The Flash Jay threw it, in Infinite Crisis he uses it to deflect Superboy-Prime's heat vision and in The Flash: Rebirth he punches it to create a sonic boom.
  • In The Punisher MAX, Frank Castle's tactics are far more subdued and simpler than the mainstream version's often are, but he racks up an even higher body count. The crowning example is in the very first issue, where he executes a 100-year-old Don at his own birthday party to lure all of the assembled mobsters out into the yard, directly into the path of his M60. Soldiers trying to outflank him are obliterated with the claymores he set up. Then he hits the funeral with an RPG to get the ones he missed.

    Fan Works 
  • Another Journey: Olivier Armstrong is able to seize control of Central Command instantly when she pulls off her coup. How does she do it? Simply expose the corruption of the Senior Staff with an Engineered Public Confession, have a witness (General Hakurou, the Token Good Teammate on the Senior Staff who was blackmailed into complying) testify to confirm General Armstrong's words, and convince the soldiers at Central Command to fight for what's right and help them. It works like a charm.
  • Soul Eater: Troubled Souls: How Tsubaki and the Pot Twins dispatch their meisters’ shadow when they are unable to. Tsubaki stealthily uses Prehensile Hair in the form of a chain-scythe to slit the throat of Black☆Star’s shadow while it’s busy talking. Pot of Fire breathes fire on the face of Kilik’s shadow to debilitate it while Pot of Thunder gives it an electrically-charged wet willy in which the shocks goes directly to its brain.
  • In Why No One Messes with Luna, Luna's main method of dealing with Reapers is this. Celestia's method of doing so consists of melting them to slag with massive blasts of solar plasma, Luna? Just throw the moon at them in space. Not nearly as fancy as her sister or some of Luna's other attacks, but given she took out a third of the Reaper fleet with it, it is definitely awesome and very effective.
  • Captain America: Ghosts of HYDRA: Sharon Carter's fighting style; she doesn't have Natasha Romanov's grace or Wanda Maximoff's acrobatics in fighting ability, but she fights efficiently, hits hard and delivers blows with lightning speed.
  • Nico Robin in Stallion of the Line at one point uses her power to load and fire all of the Straw Hat cannons at once, by herself being far more efficient than the rest of the crew combined.
  • Naruto's first purely offensive jutsu in Naruto: Ramen Days is the Kunai Kage Bunshin no Jutsu. For most, it turns a single kunai into ten mid-flight, but Naruto's control is so horrendous that it turns a single kunai into a solid wall of steel. Not a fancy technique, but few survive being stabbed everywhere at once.
  • Fate/Black Reflection: During their intense rematch, Lancer notes that this is what Ichigo's fighting style amounts too. Unlike most Servants and high-level Shinigami who have flashy, advanced skills with their weaponry, Ichigo really only has the bare basics of swordsmanship. But combined with his insane strength, speed, and combat instincts, he's capable of keeping pace with the likes of Berserker and Lancer.
  • In Neither a Bird nor a Plane, it's Deku!, Izuku notes that his Kryptonian Combo Platter Powers aren't especially complex or technical, but any of them would be Pro Hero material on their own. While this makes it tough for him to come up with new applications aside from making them stronger, faster, or more accurate, it also means that he'll rarely be lacking in anything he ever needs. Besides, who needs a super technical Quirk when you can flatten robots by landing on them and are nearly invincible against most forms of damage?
  • In Risk It All, Soul-Crushing Strike is a simple punch that strikes with bone-breaking force and Ren's most-used combat skill. It's a no-frills attack powerful enough to incapacitate any non-superpowered mobster by crushing their bones and can't be blocked through martial arts. The only noticeable downsides are the loud bang it makes upon use and Ren's own squeamishness over crippling someone for life.

    Films — Animation 
  • Big Hero 6: Hiro's Megabot consists of three detachable magnets with one joint each, which is a simple-looking design compared to other robots. However, his detachability makes it hard for other robots to deal lasting damage to him, since he can reassemble himself. His detachability also allows him to move his segments onto an opponent's body, and most robots aren't flexible enough to tear his segments off.
  • How to Train Your Dragon 2: In the second film, Hiccup uses Monstrous Nightmare saliva to coat a wire sword, which he can then ignite. This helps him tame dragons, as creating the fire makes dragons see him as one of them. Hiccup also uses Hideous Zippleback gas and stores it in canisters, which he uses to simulate dragon fire that will help dragons trust him more easily since they see him as a dragon.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Ash in Evil Dead 2 has to figure out how to start his chainsaw when he's got a boomstick in his left hand and said chainsaw in place of his right. So he adds two little protruding bits of scrap metal to his harness, which allows him to hook and pull the ripcord quickly, easily, and badassly.
  • Near the beginning of Taken, Liam Neeson's character has to catch a mook. In Paris, no less. Surely there will be a free-running scene! But no, he simply climbs into the mook's abandoned car and runs him down. He later acquires two handguns, but instead of using Guns Akimbo, he tucks one into his belt and doesn't draw it until he's exhausted the other's ammo. Most of the movie ends up being Liam Neeson's ex-CIA character subverting standard action movie tropes with much more practical approaches.
  • Johnny English Reborn when chasing down an highly athletic Chinese thug, Johnny uses practical means to chase him, the thug jumps up a fence Johnny opens the gate, the thug athletic jumps over some obstacles Johnny uses a ladder, and so on...
  • Late in Iron Man, Pepper Potts and several SHIELD agents need to break into Obadiah Stane's vault. Pepper's key card won't work, so Phil Coulson attaches a small device to the door's lock. As Pepper asks if it's some kind of hacking device, the door explodes open.

  • In The Thirty-Nine Steps and its sequels, John Buchan's Gentleman Adventurer Richard Hannay is an extremely competent spy who relies upon very practical strategies. For instance, he is a Master of Disguise, which he accomplishes through altering his mannerisms more so than his appearance.
  • Many hitmen in Tony Hillerman's novels fit this trope — they accomplish cool things by meticulous planning and step-by-step execution (no pun intended).
  • The Dresden Files is fond of this.
    • How do you deal with a Native American Eldritch Abomination that eats magic and is practically immune to everything you throw at it? Opt for the Nuclear Option.
    • How do you kill a wizard, which can usually manage to cast a revenge-curse before they die even if you manage to mortally wound them? With no warning, via sniper rifle, at sufficient range for the bullet to arrive before the sound of the gun.
    • Firearms are used extensively against supernatural horrors, notably when Marcone led a squad of mercenaries into a council of vampires by way of the Nevernever. Many mid and lower tier supernatural creatures even use firearms themselves. Vampires or fae might be stronger, tougher and faster than humans, but that doesn't mean they don't appriciate just how effective a submachine gun is in the right situations.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Batman series had The Riddler once get the perfect burglary tool; a rare wax that is a powerful corrosive that can eat through thick steel or concrete within a few minutes, is practically silent in use and a pocketful is all you need, yet it is perfectly safe to handle until you expose it to direct flame.
  • According to an alien prince in Babylon 5, the human built Starfury Fighter is more interesting than more advanced alien craft due to its no frills, effective brutality.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer featured an episode that dealt with an ancient demon that "cannot be killed by any weapon forged". It was eventually realized that this was descriptive, not prescriptive, and weapon technology had come a long way since it first appeared. They blew it up with a rocket launcher.
    The Judge: What's that do?
  • Burn Notice runs on this. Most of the plans they use are designed to be as simple as possible to execute while completely blowing their target's mind.
  • Cobra Kai:
    • This is Miguel's style to a T. He disdains flashy attacks and focuses on delivering basic punches and straight kicks with pinpoint accuracy and overwhelming power. While he is by no means the most visually impressive fighter in the series, he dominates any fight he gets into almost effortlessly.
    • The "Silver Bullet" technique that Terry Silver teaches Kenny in Season 5 is nothing more than a simple punch to the chest, but it's delivered with such precision and power that it can completely knock the wind out of its victim, making it effectively a One-Hit KO.
  • Merlin (2008) - how does Merlin eliminate the powerful Lady of Black Magic Morgause? Telekinetically throwing her against the wall so that she suffers blunt head trauma - therefore preventing her from being able to cast any more magic.
  • Robot Wars had a huge amount of this. In particular, Chaos 2, which had a simple pneumatic flipper, but claimed the UK title twice in a row.
    • The S.Ri.Mec, or self-righting mechanism. It can both flip your opponent over, making him unable to move, and flip you back over if he does it to you.
    • With robot combat in general, wedges are this, at least among the fans that like them. (For others, they fall into Boring, but Practical.) the ability to slip underneath your opponent simply because of the shape of your machine provides both superb offense and defense at the same time. As these competitions have weight limits, robots with weapons must set aside some weight to their weapons whereas wedges can allocate their available weight completely to speed and pushing power. In addition, they don't have to worry about any weapons breaking over the course of the competition. Because of these advantages, weaponless robots like New Cruelty and The Big B tore through their competitors to become runners-up, with the likes of Tornado and Original Sin actually winning their competitions, defeating every weaponized robot they faced.
  • The Stargate-verse uses this extensively.
    • Stargate SG-1 explains the difference between an alien staff weapon and a P-90note .
    • One of the most important things they're trying to do in the show is to keep Bad Things from getting on Earth through the Stargate. The primary way they do this? By fitting a big metal gate one centimeter in front of the portal, causing anyone who opens a portal to them unexpectedly and walks through without transmitting a security code to get teleported straight into a solid metal wall. Squish.
    • Stargate: Continuum features a type of stargate wormhole that allows time travel by using SG-1's discovery of the effects of routing through a certain, extremely rare type of solar flare. The obvious solution is to invent some way to artificially induce one, right? Nope! Just use a deep space observatory to watch the hundreds of billions of stars in the galaxy and wait for one to oblige you.
  • On Top Gear (UK), the hosts often praise hot hatches because they are practical for daily use and offer more than enough performance for a bit of fun on the track. Plus, they are affordable to purchase and maintain so a minor nick or dent isn't too much cause for concern. In one review, Chris Harris said he'd pick a Ford Focus over a Lamborghini because the Lambo is a beautiful piece of engineering, too uncomfortable to use as a daily driver, and so expensive to buy and maintain that he'd be terrified of getting even the slightest scratch.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • The finishing move of The Big Show is... a punch to the face. But when you're more than seven feet tall, weight 400+ pounds, and have a hand that's the size of a baseball glove, punching someone once at full strength is really all you need.
  • In a similar vein, Ox Baker became widely feared for his finishing move, the "Heart Punch", a simple punch to the chest that developed a reputation for killing people. What made it so scary is that two of Baker's opponents in the 70's — Alberto Torres and Ray Gunkel — had genuinely died following matches with Baker, and while their deaths were in reality completely unrelated (respectively caused by a ruptured appendix and a heart attack), this was worked into Baker's character. The myth surrounding this move proved so captivating that Baker once caused a genuine riot in 1974 after repeatedly Heart Punching Ernie Ladd in the ring.
  • The chokeslam has long been a favourite of big men all over the pro wrestling world because it looks so awesome (and depending on how tall you are and how high the opponent can jump, can result in some serious elevation) despite being simple and safe to perform. Additionally, this is one of the few moves in pro wrestling that can be somewhat reliably used in real fighting, because it neither requires participation from opponents nor poses risk to the performer, but is capable of causing enough damage to practically end a fight instantly (and a life, if not careful).
  • The famous Anderson Spine Buster involves whipping the opponent into the ropes, catching them by the waist as they come off, spinning them off the ground 180 degrees and them planting them on the mat with your shoulder on their sternum. The Rock simply grabbed the legs, lifted them up and skipped to the last part. The bionic spine buster kept the whip part but just involved positioning weight so that they hit the shoulder and then falling with them, no hands necessary.
  • Rocking horse holds involve locking, wrapping or trapping the legs in some fashion, usually with your own, before pulling back on the arms. Where most variations of wrestling holds are usually more complex than the original, Mercedes Martinez's is purposefully much simpler by her placing her feet at around the shoulders, allowing quicker application as a counter or transition hold. April Hunter showed why most don't do it this way though when she bit her way out.
  • The Sweet Chin Music, while a simple Superkick instead of something more elaborate, is still relatively easy to perform, lightning-quick, and has a high chance of knocking someone out cold right then and there (including in Real Life).
  • Walter/GUNTHER has made a career out of trading theatricality for sheer power while in the ring, as while his moveset is pretty basic and reminiscent of classic-era wrestling (suplexes, dropkicks, powerbombs), he himself is so strong and passively intimidating that it's completely believable that they hurt like hell. His Signature Move is a simple chop to his opponent's chest, but with the way his opponents sell it and fact it's so damn loud, he might as well have shot them with a sniper rifle.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Among the various artifacts in Anima: Beyond Fantasy, the Zelber is Simple, yet Awesome on both a mechanical level and an aesthetic one. Simple? It's a fairly normal-looking longsword, albeit with a shiny silver-hued blade, and the only power that might be described as anything but "cuts really well" is being considered Light-elemental, which is unusually basic for its level of artifact. Awesome? It's very pretty even with its simple design, it's made of starmetal and the setting equivalent of part of the Grim Reaper's scythe blade, and swinging it with lethal intent at someone depicts them as a lifeless skeleton in their reflection on the blade. Additionally, "cuts really well" in this case means that it ignores all armor and all forms of immunity that would otherwise prevent it from cutting, and every hit is an automatic potentially-maiming Critical, even on creatures that would normally be too massive to care.
  • BattleTech sports the Medium Laser. A staple even in the first versions of the game, the Medium Laser is, succinctly, perfectly balanced. It is ideally sized to cram just about anywhere in the mech design process so long as you have a ton left to fill and an empty crit slot, and has a very impressive damage/mass ratio. It also has manageable heat output, no need for ammo, and is quite cheap. You can cram a stupid amount of them on a 'mech as well as enough heat sinks to fire most of them without overheating. Its sole downside is that its range is a bit short. Its more advanced offshoots don't manage this awesome simplicity quite as well: Extended Range variants put out too much heatnote , pulse lasers weigh twice as much and don't have the same range, heavy lasers are twice as bulky and are REALLY hot-running, and also have accuracy penalties.
  • Chaotic has Primal Smash for attacks and Cadence Clash for mugic.
    • Primal Smash does 20 non-elemental damage while only costing 1 build point to put in an attack deck, allowing it to basically be splashed into any deck possible for quick, decent damage that'll be more or less unhindered by anything to remove elements or disciplines. The only downside is that it's Unique, meaning your only allowed one in your deck.
    • Cadance Clash is a generic mugic (Meaning it can be cast by any creature) for only 1 mugic counter. It negates an opponents mugic and returns it to the hand. Considering that mugic counters are a limited resource, it can potentially shut down any mugic interruptions, and if the mugic was on the more expensive side (I.E. Cost more then one counter to play), it can potentially lock them out of using it for the rest of the game. Even if they decide to use the mugic you negated again, it's still forcing them to waste even more counters, which can really cripple decks without reliable counter generation.
  • Champions:
    • The Haymaker in 4th ed., while this maneuver has the drawbacks of being slow, a bit inaccurate and makes the attacker an easier target to hit, everyone already knows how to do one (no need to buy martial arts) and it does 1.5 times your normal Strength. In a game where superhumanly strong individuals are commonplace, this is a tremendous boost to damage. Contrast that to martial arts where the Offensive Strike is the hardest hitting attack and that only adds 4d6 to damage (but doesn't have the penalties).
    • Depending on how much you buy, Damage Reduction can reduce damage taken by up to 75%. Unlike abilities such as armor, it won't be affected by abilities such as armor-piercing, penetrating or other usual methods of getting through most protection.
    • Normally there's no such thing as Nigh-Invulnerable in the Champions game. even a World War 2 tank is a huge threat to even the highest end supervillain or heroes. But the power Desolidification can make a character laugh at getting hit by a tank shell or even a nuclear bomb, as only certain things can affect an intangible character such as Mental Powers or abilities with the modifier Affect Desolidified.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • 3.5 edition has "save or suck" spells, which (instead of dealing damage directly like Fireball or Lightning Bolt) usually give the enemy huge penalties that lets you kill them in other ways. Prominent examples include Grease (a low-level spell that makes the floor slippery, making it harder for the enemy to move or dodge, and may make them fall over entirely) and Glitterdust (which blinds everything in an area by covering it in glowing golden dust). Better than that, Glitterdust also outlines invisible creatures inside its area, NO SAVE ALLOWED, and bypasses spell resistance. Even when See Invisibility can't help (such as spotting a water elemental underwater), Glitterdust can show you exactly where it is if you can find it within a 10' radius circle. It's one of the best 2nd-level spells in the game.
    • The spell magic missile. One of the simplest, and earliest spells for Sorcerers/Wizards, and yet can still hold up to the higher level ones due to its scalingnote . Dragon #328 added the Force Missile Mage, which takes magic missile even further, though it somewhat forces those who take into When All You Have Is a Hammer…/The All-Solving Hammer, as the prestige class makes magic missile into one of the most ridiculously versatile spells in the entire game, at the cost of usually making it the only offensive spell you use in the game.
    • Glibness, full stop. In a game where a +6 bonus is considered quite excellent, Glibness gives you a +30 to Bluff checks to lie to people. Coming up to the Big Bad's castle? Telling the gate guards that you are their boss's childhood friend here to throw him a party is only a +20 to beat. Another example of the overpoweredness that is Bluff, Diplomacy, and Intimidate.
    • The 5th Edition minor illusion spell creates either an image in a five-foot cube or one minute of sound, which can be as simple as a rock to hide inside or as complex as interactive dialogue. Creatures perceive the illusions as real unless they touch them or examine them closely; allies can easily be made to see through them; and the spell can be cast unlimited times per day — the only limit is the caster's imagination.
    • Splint Armor of 5th Edition. Gives the wearer 17AC for the relatively low price of 200 gold on average, thus being useful for a party that's short on cash. Plate armor, the best Heavy Armor, with its 18AC, costs 1,500 gold on average, 7.5 times the price of Splint, for an extra 1 AC improvement by comparison.
    • From 5e, in the same vein as Splint Armor for Heavy Armor comes Scale Mail for Medium Armor. Comparing Scale Mail with Breastplate, they have the same AC, but Breastplate costs 8 times the price - 400 gold to Scale Mail's 50. Breastplate's main advantage is that it lacks Disadvantage on Stealth Checks. The best Medium Armor is Half Plate, which costs 750 gold, 15 times the price of Scale Mail, for an increase of 1 AC.
    • Also from 5e is Studded Leather for Light Armor. Not only is it the best armor for those who can only use Light Armor for protection, it only costs 45 gold. Granted, this is 4.5 times the price of Leather, but 45 gold is a drop in the bucket compared to the best Medium and Heavy Armors. What's more, with max out Dex, it caps out at 17, which only plate armor outright exceeds. In short, even a cash-strapped group can see to it that those who can only use Light Armor are as protected as much as they can possibly be.
    • The Sidekick classes introduced in Tasha's. They are Expert, Spellcaster and Warrior. Basically, by applying these templates to a CR 1/2 or lower monster, NPC, or animal, one can ramp up the challenge of fighting even things such as goblins and kobolds, who'd normally be steamrolled by higher leveled parties. Also, its a good way to give a party tough allies if a smaller party needs to fight a dragon. Also, it's an easy way to send improved guards and the like after troublesome parties who cause a lot of issues in the area, or for some other reason. Also, should the party have things like draft horses as mounts, or other animal buddies, or other companions, those can be improved too.
    • For 5e, Adamantine, Mithril, and Mariner versions of armor are fairly common, and useful. Adamantine armor ignores the extra damage from Critical Hits. Mithril armor removes any strength requirements heavy armor might otherwise have, as well as any disadvantage some armor has on stealth checks. Mariner armor gives one a swim speed and brings unconscious wearers to the surface of the body of water they are in.
    • For 5e, Tasha's Custom Origins allows one to move racial stats around, as well as alter racial proficiencies one has from Skills, Armor, Weapons, and Tools. For instance, if one wants to play a Half-Orc Wizard, they can move the Stat Adjustments to reflect a more Intelligent-based character, and swap proficiency in Intimidation for Persuasion to make them more likeable around others. Likewise, a Mountain Dwarf Fighter can basically get rid of Dwarven Armor Training and Dwarven Combat Training to get access to six tools, like the other two possible choices from Tool Proficiency, maybe grab vehicles for land and water, and some instaments.
    • Since Tasha's, many new, or reworked, races that have Inborn Magical Powers can chose which mental stat to use to power them — Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma. This allowes something like a revised Yuan-Ti that's a Wizard to not worry about their Charisma, like the older version did, and just focus on their Intelligence, using their Wizard DC and Spell Attack modifiers to figure things out. This is also a benefit for non-magic based classes, or subclasses — with a Standard Stat Array, odds are that at least one mental stat will be 12 or better, like with a Barbarian that might value Wisdom to spot hidden foes or ride animals over Charisma to talk to others.
  • Exalted has Excellencies, simple magic powers that - depending on the specific Excellency - add more dice to a character's pool for a roll, add automatic successes to a roll, or allow a re-roll. There's nothing complex about Excellencies, but Exalts can use them to generate absurdly large die pools and achieve successes far beyond what mortals are capable of.
  • Go has two objectives: control larger areas of the board, and avoid having the other player capture your stones. Because these two goals are so contradictory to each other, strategies can be extremely varied and even psychological. The game is Serious Business in the Orient, on a level similar to Football in Europe, and games can last for days with the loser vomiting blood simply by succumbing to stress.
    • To demonstrate the simplicity, here are the rules in just 96 words!
  • Magic: The Gathering:
    • While the game has numerous big, flashy spells and humongous, powerful creatures, the very best cards tend to be low in mana cost with very simple effects such as "draw three cards", "add three mana to your mana pool", "take an extra turn after this one", or "deal 3 damage to target creature or player". Even creatures with no abilities at all can be awesome.
    • A general rule for the metagame, especially the Legacy format, is that the best spells are the ones with cheap costs and good effects. Due largely to the effects of Power Creep over the game's 20+ years of existence, this means that the vast majority of "playable" or "optimal" spells in Legacy cost either 1 or 2 mana. In all these cases, the effects are generally simple yet absurdly devastating: 1 Black Mana: Lose 2 life, look at your opponent's hand, and they discard any single non-Land card you choose; 2 Blue: Counter target spell; etc.
    • There is an entire deck archetype based on this principle: Mono-Red Burn. The deck contains exactly 17 Mountains, 3 Mountain-like lands that can burn, and no less than 24 effective copies of the same card— spend 1 red mana to deal 3 damage to your opponent. Remember Lightning Bolt up there? The main reason Magic even has the four-copy limit for an individual card was to keep people from playing what was dubbed "The 40 Lightning Bolt Special", which is this trope taken to its logical conclusion.
  • Railroads in Monopoly have a very simple gimmick: rather than putting houses and hotels on them, landing on one means you pay its owner $25 for every railroad they own. While they don't have the potential to devastate your opponent like a fully-loaded property, they also don't require a monopoly to begin paying off and don't require any investment beyond buying them and letting them sit on the board like a landmine. Furthermore, they are among the most commonly landed-on spaces on the map, meaning that if you get all of them they'll bleed your opponent over time in a Death of a Thousand Cuts sort of way and be a constant and reliable source of income. Finally, even if you mortgage some, it doesn't harm the payoff potential of the unmortgaged railroads in any way, and they are cheap to unmortgage, meaning they're a handy little nest egg in a pinch as well.
  • Pokémon: Base Set Blastoise is very good (with an ability letting it break one of the basic rules of the game by playing more than one energy card per turn), but is usually overshadowed by much more popular Charizard.
    • One particular deck that's incredibly simple is the Rampardos Donk deck. Evolve Cranidos to Rampardos, and attach a Fighting Energy to Rampardos. Now it can do 80 damage every turn. It is also one of the fastest-functioning Pokémon decks to have ever existed.
  • From Vampire: The Masquerade, Presence is not quite as heavy-handed as Dominate, but it is awesome for 3 reasons: It doesn't need eye contact, it can affect everyone in the room, and it ignores Generational differences (whereas Dominate needs eye contact, only works once at a time, and fails on lower Generation).
  • Warhammer 40,000 has the Imperial Guard, an army of Red Shirt soldiers backed up by some of the most practical and easy-to-field vehicles in the entire game.
    • The Leman Russ is the bread and butter of the Imperial Guard vehicular lineup, being able to do and take immense damage for its very cheap price. Between the number of loadouts and varieties, no proper Imperial Guard army would be complete without at least half a dozen waiting to be deployed.
    • The Earthshaker Cannon is essentially a gun-howitzer following characteristics finalized in a World War I design sized up to Warhammer 40K levels. They're little more than giant metal tubes, but they will destroy anything unlucky enough to be in their considerable range of fire.
    • The Chimera is the standard APC, and essentially a brick on treads. It's so solid, however, that it can get soldiers to and from places safer than most aerial transports, through a large variety of hostile and unforgiving terrain.
      • The Chimera chassis itself is extremely versatile, and it can be used for many jobs. Including the Basilisk artillery cannon - that is a Chimera with an Earthshaker Cannon on top.
    • Even without vehicles, an Imperial Guard army consists of men with what equates to a bunch of flashlights and t-shirts compared to the weaponry of their potential enemies. All of them firing at once, though, can melt just about any target, and a huge grouping of simple soldiers can be terrifying.
    • The heavy stubber is an extremely unsophisticated weapon compared to the bolters and power swords out there- yet is churned out by the billions on forge worlds due to its simplicity, ease of maintenance, and rate of fire. Yes, even 40 millennia into the future, you still can't do better than the Browning M2.
    • Lore-wise, the humble Lasgun straddles between this and Boring, but Practical. As mentioned in other pages, the basic Lasgun is horribly weak compared to other weapons and only effective in massed numbers. Yet its design is incredibly robust, its power cell can last for a long time (from decades to centuries of continuous use) and can be recharged by exposure to sunlight or by heating it over a fire in a pinch (which could also turn it unstable, making for an improvised explosive for desperate Guardsmen). Many in-universe characters prefer the Lasgun over the more advanced weapons due to its simplicity and reliability, and its basic design allows for more advanced/powerful derivatives such as Lascannon, Hellgun, Multilaser, Long-Las, up to the Volcano Cannon that can fell a Titan and topping out with the anti-orbital Defense Lasers and the Lance Cannons on ships that can blow holes in multi-kilometer ships and obliterate ground targets with pinpoint accuracy if the ship providing fire support is able to fire without distractions. Ciaphas Cain, HERO OF THE IMPERIUM, prefers to use a laspistol instead of the traditional bolt pistol for commissars, a pistol that shoots .75 calibre explosive rounds, due to its light weight making it a lot easier to pull out and shoot when (not if) the need arises as well as always having the ammo it needs, instead of having to lug around a heavy pistol and its extra bolt rounds that are quickly chewed up.
    • Imperial Guard tactics usually boil down to "drown everything that isn't yours in firepower until you win". There are few things more satisfying than unleashing a volley of barrages from a mass of field artillery or rolling over a hundred dice from nearly every single unit. Indeed this is part of the army's appeal; no fancy tricks up their sleeves, just good ol' brute force and lots of artillery shells. There is a reason the Space Marines are nicknamed the "Emperor's Scalpel", and the Guard the "Emperor's Hammer".
    • The Tau, being a highly advanced, futuristic alien race might not seem like candidates for this, but a Crisis Suit-wearing Commander with an Onager Gauntlet is this. Normally Tau suck at melee, with even their melee units being extremely fragile compared to other races' units. In spite of this, the Commander has a decent enough melee profile but normally lacks power weapons to take advantage of his enhanced strength and number of attacks that come from the Suit. The Onager Gauntlet, however, allows the wielder to trade all of its attacks in for a single attack that hits as hard as a Tau Hammerhead Gunship's Railgun. Very few infantry class models can survive a hit from that if it lands, and even the most heavily armored of vehicles is very likely to become an exploding wreck from it. It's also so cheap points cost wise, there is no excuse for a Commander not to have it.
    • Every Space Marine chapter has a specialization towards a particular aspect of war. Space Wolves are superhuman space Vikings who kick ass in close combat, Blood Angels are psychotic vampire berserkers and masters of rapid deployment, Raven Guard are awesome pseudo-Native American warriors who are great guerilla fighters, and the Ultramarines... are pretty good at logistics. Hey, don't laugh, guess which one of these has a mini-empire spanning five hundred worlds?
    • Orks have a very straightforward approach to space travel and orbital deployment: Find a big asteroid, hollow it out, fill it with orks, fit the biggest engines you can on it, and point it at a planet. Your makeshift Drop Pod either survives reentry and delivers hordes of orks in the middle of a huge blast crater, or it explodes and burns up in the atmosphere. Either option is equally valid (and entertaining) by ork standards.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • Dark Hole. It clears the field of monsters and often is the best card for removing an opponent's best monster from the field. Also its equivalent for spell and trap cards, Heavy Storm. Harpy's Feather Duster can do the same, except your cards are not destroyed.
    • There's also Synchro Summon, as well as the later introduced Xyz Summon. Both are straightforward: turn two monsters on the field into a big monster, kept in the extra deck. It does not take your normal summon, and it doesn't take cards from your hand. It just gives you a boss-level monster. Synchro Summoning completely changed the game when it came out, emphasizing the use of these boss monsters, and Xyz summoning followed the same paradigm.

    Video Games 
  • Examples across multiple games:
    • There's a reason why Shotguns Are Just Better is a very prevalent trope. Simple to use, easy to maintain, efficient... it's hard to find a game in which the shotgun is a bad weapon, even when it's a Short-Range Shotgun. The only consistent aspect that keeps them from being a Game-Breaker is that they have painfully long reload times.
    • Speed, related movement abilities, and Advanced Movement Techniques, in action games. If your character deals more damage or takes less, that's basically the extent of what that trait does. If your character moves faster, or is able to move in special ways (Double Jump, Rocket Jump, Video Game Dashing, etc.), this affects practically every part of the game: you can escape fights more easily, capitalize on opportunities (pursuing wounded opponents to finish them off, for example) more readily, maneuver into out-of-the-way locations to surprise enemies or find powerups, and dodge enemy attacks better. In competitive multiplayer games with respawning, faster movement means being able to return to the fight faster (thus reducing the consequences of death), while in singleplayer campaigns, movement has very obvious applications for Speedrunning. And, so long as your speed is controllable, it just feels awesome to move faster than everything else.
  • Advance Wars has a lot of cheap, small units that do their jobs so well and require more expensive responses they are the lynchpins of any advanced-level player's arsenal despite being very simple and unimpressive. Any time your opponent has to invest more money than you did to counter you, you've won that engagement even if you lose said unit, making these units awesome:
    • Infantry. Weak, small, only three movement range, and no special weaponry. However they're cheap to deploy, can cross mountains, rivers, and shoals, and can capture properties. They seem small in a world of tanks, bombers, heavy artillery, and the science-fiction arsenal of Black Hole, but if you don't deploy enough Infantry to take properties and hold them, which in turn provides you much-needed funds and places to heal and resupply, you will lose that match.
    • When contending with mountainous terrain, Mechs are your way to go. The way their movement intermingles with terrain costs, they're actually more mobile on mountains than infantry, and thanks to the defense bonuses of mountains they can dig themselves in and take devastating potshots at vehicle units trying to navigate through mountainous chokepoints. Since vehicles can't enter mountains, pretty much the only way to chase them off is to build Battle Copters, indirects, or wait like 7 turns for their own infantry to get there. This means your opponent has only three options: lose units worth 4000 to 8000 to units worth only 3000, build units worth 7000 to 15000 just to oust them, or retreat — no matter what they choose you win that engagement.
    • Beginner players often discount Recon units unless on a Fog of War map, as their gimmick is mediocre firepower and high vision. This is a huge mistake, as Recon units are also only worth 4000 and have high movement: they're ideal for harassing enemy infantry trying to capture properties and ousting dug-in indirect units (in an even engagement, they'll drain over half their health), which will force your opponent to invest in the more expensive Tank or Battle Copter units (worth 7000 and 9000, respectively) to contend with them.
    • The humble Tank. It has no flashy gimmics, no special abilities, no unique uses. It can't capture properties like Infantry, or attack over distances like Artillery, or see far like Recons. But it has 70 fuel, 9 cannon rounds, and decent vision and mobility, and can reliably attack most units and take a decent beating for a thrifty 7000g. These will be a mainstay of your army if you want to do well.
    • While less commonly encountered due to only being buildable at airports, the battle helicopter is a mainstay in missions where they can be built. They are also rather cheap at 9,000g per helicopter and can put serious hurt on units costing much more than them, as even medium tanks and neotanks can only attack them with their weak machineguns. While dedicated anti-air units will tear them to shreds, those are usually weak against the tanks mentioned above. Furthermore, since enemy units cannot move under air units, battle helicopters are also very effective at blocking off bottlenecks.
  • The Iroquois Light Cannon in Age of Empires III. It can't be built until the Industrial Age, and doesn't do as much damage as any other cannon in the game, but is long-ranged and has enough bonus damage modifiers to fill the roles of three European cannon units at once, and has an incredible level of mobility. It's also slightly cheaper, and (with Siege Discipline) takes up relatively little population.
  • In the hands of a player, the simple bolt power from Age of Mythology can be useful up until the mythic age. Its effect: kill one (non-hero/titan) unit instantly. This includes the free myth units you gain from advancing ages (essential for early-game raiding), to units granted by god powers, such as the Son of Osiris, the Nidhogg, or the Chinese Earth Dragons. It was so powerful that the devs made it so Zeus players couldn't use it to scout out and kill another player's starting units while they're less in number and more valuable (i.e., Atlantean Citizens, or the Norse's starting Ulfsark).
  • In Alien Shooter TD, the S.W.A.T and Sniper units. The S.W.A.T is a guy with a shotgun that handles basic swarms well while the Sniper has high damage, fairly effective against armored units (especially if you have anti-material rifles) and incredible range. Nothing fancy, but very effective. This is averted with the Marine, a simple guy who handles the assault rifles and machine guns. In-game he's supposed to be an improved early hitter against armored enemies when the S.W.A.T's shotgun is ineffective against them. While his FMJ bullets do work better compared to shotgun pellets, the Marine fails against most enemies because of the low base damage on his weapons. And in this game, ammo costs so his rapid-fire attacks cost a small fortune over time for poor results and with only limited spaces for deploying units - he ends up taking spots for far better guys like the Light Energy trooper.
  • Arcanum:
    • The Harm spell. It's a humble first-level combat spell, but it's cheap in mana, its damage goes up the more magical aptitude you gain, and your mage can cast it as fast as you can click on the enemy. Basically it's a magical machine gun, only it always hits home, and you can regenerate the ammo!
    • Keys take up two inventory spaces, and you'll find a lot of them throughout the game. One Keyring later, and they all infinitely stack in two spaces.
  • Ar tonelico Qoga: Knell of Ar Ciel: This is Coccona's preference; she doesn't like her weapons having extra dodads and her supermoves are all based on a simple premise like 'turning' or 'go fast in one direction'.
  • A lot of Older Than the NES games are Simple, yet Awesome. Asteroids (you have to shoot all the meteors), Space Invaders (shoot all the aliens), Defender (again, shoot aliens), and Pac-Man (eat all the dots and avoid the monsters) were all simple, yet popular to the point of addictive.
  • The Sparta Kick from Assassin's Creed: Odyssey is about as simple as you can get: kicking people or animals really, really hard so they go flying, or become completely unconscious. Costs only one adrenaline bar, extremely low cooldown, and a cheap and easy way to get some breathing room in crowded fights, or knocking down challenging foes for a few precious seconds. It is one of the first skills you can get, but it remains useful all throughout the game. It's also almost vital to killing high HP enemies by sending them down long drops or into the sea to the maw of a waiting shark, especially early in the game. Few foes are immune to it, and even then, it's only to the knockback, it has long invincibility frames, and just looks and sounds awesome along with being really, really entertaining to use.
  • In Baten Kaitos Origins, you will do much better in battles if you forego all the flashy cards with unique abilities and just fill your deck with the simple and reliable Weak, Medium, and Strong Attack cards, a few special attacks, and a few healing cards of your choice, and then use some quest magnus essence to tweak your elemental resistances or stats. In fact, this is pretty much your only hope against that god-forsaken Holoholo Bird, as everything else is too slow or quirky to effectively kill its chicks before they can restore its health.
  • There are a lot of 'Mechs to choose from in Battletech, and all of the 'Mechs can be customized to carry a variety of weapons, making them modifiable to counter a number of different situations. But the mainstay weapon is, much like the tabletop game, the Medium Laser: it does 25 damage, has a medium range and medium accuracy. Most 'Mechs mount at least one, with a variety mounting two or more. Assault 'Mechs have Medium Lasers alongside their much heavier weapons. And it's for a good reason: Medium Lasers are the standard for combat. They weigh one ton, have a reasonable heat build up, and take up one slot of space on a 'Mech's grid. You can mount one PPC (50 damage, 15 stability damage, extreme range, 12 heat, 4 slots, 7 tons) or 4 Medium Lasers (100 combined damage, no stability damage, medium range, 16 combined heat, 4 slots, 4 tons). You can mount one Heavy Laser (40 damage, long range, 10 heat, 2 slots, 5 tons) or two Medium Lasers (50 damage, medium range, 8 heat, 2 slots, 2 tons). There's one 'Mech, the Hunchback, where the base variant, the 4K, mounts a giant Autocannon/20 that deals a lot of damage (100 points), but is limited by ammo capacity to 10 shots. The laser variant, the 4P, removes the Autocannon in favor of eight medium lasers, allowing it to do twice as much damage.
  • Give the player a field of different-colored tiles and a limited ability to rearrange them. Cause them to disappear and be replaced when three or more identical tiles are placed in a row. Bejeweled and every other Match-Three Game out there. Awesome.
  • The Binding of Isaac:
    • Basic stat boosts. There are a LOT of Disk One Nukes and Game Breakers in this game, so not getting these on a run and instead just getting basic stat raises can seem unimpressive, but if you manage to get Isaac's Tears and Damage stats high enough and you won't need the fancy stuff. Just being able to hurl tears that are either powerful enough to One Hit enemies or that fire so quickly they can't get close will clear rooms with the same efficacity as game-breaking combos. Apollyon relies entirely on this concept, starting with Void that allows him to sacrifice passive items for stat increases — he's tricky to use, but his name means "destroyer" in Biblical Greek for a reason.
    • Pretty Flies. It's nothing more than a small fly that closely orbits Isaac that is capable of deflecting shots and killing the small spider enemies. However, they can be obtained from a pill, a slot machine, and even some items, and they stack up to three so it's pretty easy to get three going in a run. At this point Isaac basically becomes immune to enemy shots, allowing you to sweep those annoying enemies who spam projectiles like Mom's Heart and It Lives, who pretty much become non-threats if you have three Pretty Flies. Even Mega Satan can be taken down pretty easily with nothing more than three Pretty Flies, so long as you mind the blood laser.
    • Cain starts with a Lucky Foot which has a pretty simple and obvious gimmick: slighly better luck with drops, gambling machines, and (most importantly) all pills are good. This means not only do you get twice the stat boosts other characters get, but you're also not suffering the negative effects. It's not unheared of to have Cain with near max stats, three pretty flies, and a full set of red hearts as early as The Womb, which can make him completely untouchable even if he's lacking any fancy abilities.
    • The Ladder. Identical to that from The Legend of Zelda, it lets you cross one-block-wide gaps and nothing more. Said gaps are much more common than you'd imagine and enemies can't follow you onto your ladder, so for 15 paltry cents you can reach a lot of items you'd normally need a bomb or a key to reach, and stand out of reach of enemies and pick them off from a safe vantage point.
    • Similarly is The Boomerang. It's a weak attack that very briefly stuns enemies and can grab items a la The Legend of Zelda so it's not too impressive... until you realize this game loves to dangle rewards outside of your reach or behind spikes or bombable walls, and this thing can just play them for chumps and bypass all of them. Better still is it destroys corpses... which boost your chances of getting Devil and Angel rooms, so if you have this thing and are even remotely good at dodging you're basically guaranteed to get one after each boss.
    • Petrified Poop. All it does is give you a 50% chance of getting an item from poop instead of the normal 20% chance, and it's completely unaffected by your luck stat. There is a lot of poop in this game so this translates into a lot of hearts, soul hearts, the occasional eternal heart, and a lot of extra money, keys, and bombs.
    • Gnawed Leaf makes you completely invincible, but only if you stand perfectly still. This means if you have any orbital familiars that damage enemies on their own, or anything that can damage enemies without you moving, this basically synergizes into Wins by Doing Absolutely Nothing. This tactic is so diabolically simple and effective the devs actually gave Hush regenerating health when weak specifically to counter this strategy because too many players were defeating their Superboss by just standing there like an asshole while Hush's health drained.
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night when playing Zangestu, he has a Knife Throwing ability is pretty straightforward but it's very useful and versatile. While they don't initially do much damage, they cost very little mana to use. Zangestsu can also instill different elemental properties in them that changes how the knives fly out as well as increasing their hitting power.
    • The early Flame Cannon power lets Miriam throw a fireball. Through upgrades, the damage increases and Miriam can throw a spread of increasingly more fireballs. This is a simple and inexpensive ability that packs a surprising amount of punch.
  • Jakobs guns in the Borderlands series. In a game full of battery-powered guns that can alternate between shooting fireballs and lightning, external engine-driven guns that fire directly out of your ammo reserve and guns that fire recursive homing bullets, Jakobs sticks with Non-Elemental weapons that'd look at home in the Wild West. They have small magazines and zero gimmicks at all, in exchange for exquisite artisanal craftsmanship and individual shots that always hit like a truck.
  • Cover Fire from Viva Game Studios has a wide selection of gunsns including some futuristic ones like the Rail Gun and exotic modern ones like the Kriss Vector. But the best are the M4A1-Z, LVOA-C Patriot, and M870-Tactical which are all just souped-up models of the real-life versions. The M4A1-Z is an M4 carbine that's been modified for a Zombie Apocalypse so it has a series of boards and sharpened nails pounded through the barrel and a taped magazine - its base damage is standard but with a damage bonus added and also has an impressive 20% larger ammo capacity, making it the best for missions where you need suppressive fire. LVOA-C Patriot has an improved base damage plus a damage bonus and bonus to critical hit - it doesn't fire as rapidly as the prior weapon but that also means it's less wasteful in shot making it a great weapon when you need a bit more accuracy but also have to shoot a lot. The M870-Tactical fires powerful slugs and is one of the hardest hitting weapons in the game, while it has far less ammo than the previous two weapons it still has an adequate supply and its decent rate of fire means great accuracy without being handicapped - plus it has a unique boost to your health.
  • Crusader No Remorse has a lot of very nice weapons that you slowly find or buy. But for practicality there's no beating the RP-32 Pacifist semi-automatic assault rifle - the Superior Successor to the fairly decent, single-shot RP-22 Conciliator rifle. The RP-32 has good damage for its .30 bullets and one of the best firing rates. Perhaps most importantly it has long range where previously you were using pistols and a shotgun plus ammunition for rifles is abundant. The RP-32 is so efficient and versatile, it'll last the whole game even where enemies will commonly be using various Deflector Shields that greatly protect against projectile weapons. The AC-88 Reaper is an automatic shotgun with rotating barrels that'll mulch anything unshielded when used at close range and it too has a commonplace ammo to scavenge.
  • Crysis 2 has the K-VOLT. It's a humble submachinegun, so on paper it should pale compared to much of the rest of the inventory; however, it's an electric submachinegun, so while the damage isn't high compared to, say, a heavy machine gun, its pellets shock Ceph troopers into complete inactivity for a couple of seconds. Paired to your suit's massive damage in melee attacks, this lets you fire a shot into a trooper, you run up to him while he's twitching harmlessly and whack him with a powered punch, then retreat back to safety and let the suit recharge. Enemy grunt down, with a total ammo expenditure of one.
  • The humble joystick and D-pad. There's a reason just about every video game controller in existence has one or both of these and a few buttons. As a more specific example, the Super NES controller: a D-pad, four face buttons, two system-function buttons, and two shoulder buttons; hailed by many as the gold standard of 2D gaming controllers.
  • Dark Souls and its Spiritual Successor Elden Ring offer all types of fancy, super-menacing enchanted equipment derived from demons, angels, dragons and Eldritch Abominations alike, with quite a few earning the "Great-" prefix in their categorization. Yet some of the most impressive and efficient-in-action weapons are completely ordinary ones.
    • One of the most famous is the Halberd which has not only the high-speed long-range attack of spear classes and a Difficult, but Awesome secondary swing attack possessing both spear-class range and a near full-circle spread, but also does axe class levels of damage, meaning a moderately upgraded Halberd can one-shot most minor mooks and immediately clear rooms full of them with enough distance. There's a reason you so commonly see specters wielding them for most of the game.
    • Other similar weapons include the Hand Axe, Club and Heater Shield. The club, for example, can One-Hit Kill the basic enemies in the first stage, can stunlock as long as your stamina lasts, and is light enough that most classes will be able to light-roll while wielding it.
      • In some areas this applies to clothing, too. Platemail in a toxic swamp just weighs you down. A set of heavy boots and a hooded garb traditionally worn by swamp-dwellers lets you move quickly, and helps keep poison damage down.
    • The NPC Solaire's gear invokes this. Aside from a hand-painted sun decoration, it's just a regular suit of plate and chain armour.
    • The buckler. It's one of the worst shields for blocking, having terrible poise and damage reduction. For parrying, however, it has no equal due to its extended window making the timing slightly easier, and parry/riposte is one of the most fun ways to play the game. Few things are more satisfying than smacking an enemy's weapon aside and running them through while they're stunned, and in Dark Souls and Dark Souls III this tactic even works on the final boss.
  • In Deception, one recurring trap in the series is the Pendulum. This swinging blade is usually part of your Starter Equipment. Simple to use, it's extremely effective especially for how early you receive it. Besides doing good damage, the trap also launches enemies and can hit several enemies at once.
  • In the Descent series, the laser is the basic weapon you start with, but it can be upgraded by collecting extra laser powerups, as well as the quad laser, which allows you to fire 2 extra blasts. In the first game, the level 4 quad lasers are the best primary weapon you have until you get the fusion cannon, and in the second game, you can upgrade it even further to level 6 with super laser powerups, making the level 6 quad super laser one of the most powerful primary weapons in the game, as the fusion cannon has been nerfed since the last game. Somewhat downplayed in Descent 3, as there is only one level each of lasers and super lasers, along with the quad laser powerup, although they are still useful.
  • Dante's Dark Slayer Style in Devil May Cry 4, which is obtained alongside the Yamato near the end of his first playthrough. It has basic ground and aerial combos, but they open more possibilities when used in tandem with the other Styles and melee weapons. Its Slash Dimension ability only creates a wall of slashes, but it shines in New Game Plus playthroughs, Legendary Dark Knight mode and Bloody Palace because it gives Dante a more effective crowd-control move.
  • Divinity: Original Sin II: Out of the playable Origin Characters, Fane's unique ability grants an Extra Turn to himself or a nearby character.
  • The "ID Tech 1" 2.5 D engine, better known as the "Doom Engine," has this reputation. It generated a significant community of mod makers. With the release of the source code, an editor called Doom Builder was coded that made building maps even easier, thanks to a built-in 3d viewing mode, and ports of the Doom Engine like Boom & Zdoom (derived from Boom) greatly increased rendering limits, opening up the possibility for huge maps with 1000's of enemies to battle. Hexen scripting allows increased complexity for maps, such as customized victory conditions, while limit-removing source ports made it very possible to program the engine for custom genres of games.

    You don't necessarily need extensive programming to have fun with this engine; plenty of Doom-II-format levels are available on "Doom World" and they are star-rated so it is easy to find quality content. If you love hordes of monsters to battle, there are maps with enough of them to put Serious Sam to shame.
  • While players usually insist on the awesome yet insane option (such as pumping magma into pipes to dump onto their plentiful problems), the most efficient ways to defend a fort in Dwarf Fortress tend to be simple in nature. The humble drawbridge, linked to a lever, will seal off most threats outright, even without being used to squash invaders (though later updates removed the "dwarven atom smasher" glitch that drawbridges had). Carving fortifications is also simple yet effective, allowing marksdwarves to turn enemies into pincushions while being mostly protected from return fire.
  • Einhänder has the Cannon gunpod. Compared to other flashy gunpods such as the Vulcan, Juno, Spreader, Flash, Wasp, Hedgehog, Mosquito and such, it only fires out a single shot forwards- the most basic of attacks. It's also got a pretty solid firing rate, ammo for it is extremely common, and it deals pretty high damage, allowing the player to take out larger mooks and bosses quickly. If the enemies are weak enough, it also penetrates them, making it good for both weak and strong enemies.
  • The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion:
    • The Feather potion. Easy to make from the very start of the game by using abundantly available plants, it reduces the weight of all carried items. This means increased carrying capacity, faster run speed, higher jump height and lowered fall damage. A player that quaffed enough Feather potions can jump from the top of Cyrodiil's highest mountain and glide across the entire map. Such player can also sequence-break dungeons, jump and evade enemies until the cows come home, grab every single piece of loot and abuse unreachable ledges and pillars to take out powerful melee opponents (such as Umbra) with ease.
  • Described in Enter the Gungeon in the Flavor Text for Old Goldie, which is a simple, but excellently-made, shotgun in a game full of wacky and fantastic guns.
    The right answer isn't always a gun that shoots bees, a water gun, or a flaming hand. Sometimes, all you need is a simple concept executed immaculately.
  • In Fable, Enflame deals fairly high damage over a wide area and knocks down most enemies while looking really cool. While Fireball, Infernal Wrath, and Divine Fury do more damage, they also all have a considerable charge time unlike Enflame which is near instant. Furthermore, Infernal Wrath and Divine Fury are much more mana intensive. Meanwhile, Fireball is a directional attack unlike the area of effect Enflame and dodgeable by many enemies. As a result, Enflame is generally the go-to offensive spell throughout the game.
  • In the FTL: Faster Than Light, some things are can be defined as that:
    • The Kestrel B, easily considered one of the Tier A ships, is ridiculously simple. It starts with 4 Basic Lasers, a Mantis, two Humans, a Zoltan and basic equipment, instead of flashy things like the Zoltan Shield or Cloak Systems. Its sheer ease of modification and the fact it starts with plenty of support weaponry makes it a very versatile ship that is able to support nearly anything the RNG throws at you.
    • Humans. No bonuses, but no weakness either. That opens up for a plethora of support roles such as being able to repair somewhere like the Pilot's cabin with ease, without needing to screw up the Engineer who's currently trying to keep the Shields or the cloak system online, or just being able to gain that crucial edge in a fight.
    • The Ion Bomb. No damage, but it literally can take out any system out of a fight for a long while. On top of its ultra-lockdown power, its low energy consumption allows more savings on scrap.
    • The Engi A. A basic fire drone, a fast-firing Ion weapon, 2 Engis and a Human in the crew, and Healing Drones as an augment. Not flashy, but it's one of the few ships that can reliably down enemies with 3 shields using only basic equipment, due to positioning, you don't even need to stop piloting the ship in case of battle unless they beam into the pilot's room.
    • What is considered to be one of the best weapons is the Burst Laser Mk. II. Fires exactly one extra shot compared to the Mk. I, and loses to the Mk. III in potency, but it's highly reliable and useful in all sorts of ships, fires 3 shots in quick succession while only requiring one weapon space, and consumes only 2 energy, so it's always going to be useful.
  • Three of the Giga Wing ships employ special features such as Spread Shots, Roboteching homing missiles, and exploding mines. Ruby's ship, Carmine, on the other hand, forgoes all of that for a basic highly-concentrated linear shot. Coupled with the fastest movement speed in the game, it's well-suited for score chasers.
  • Golden Sun: Of all the many ways of raining destruction on foes, be it through Psynergy (earthquakes, storms, volcanic eruptions...), Djinn (elemental spirits that can deal double damage, drain life, lower resistance...) or summons (using said Djinn to bring in dragons, meteors, gods, the apocalypse, hurl enemies into the Sun...), the most efficient way to grind or battle random mooks is the humble attack button. Not only because it goes a lot faster than selecting a different command, but weapons unleash their special effects so often it's funny. Want to drop giant swords on your enemy's heads? Drown them? Jump into space and slam-dunk a miniature star on them?
  • The Grand Theft Auto series is full of this sort of thing. Someone running from you? Create a roadblock of stolen cars. Need to avoid a swarm of heavily-armed enemies? Drive a car up to a wall and climb on top to hop over.
  • In Halo, humanity in the 26th century has access to space flight and ships capable of ripping holes into an Alternate Universe in order to achieve FTL travel. With it, they've colonized dozens of planets, and they've built powerful magnetic weapons and nukes capable of wiping out entire cities with ease and developed the technology and science to create Super Soldiers. And yet, for the average soldier, the standard weapons consist mostly of pistols, rifles, light machine guns, shotguns, with fragmentation grenades, grenade launchers and rocket launchers when explosives are needed, all of which have endured more or less unchanged and still perfectly capable of killing even some of the most horrifying alien creatures out there.
    • The most common UNSC ground vehicles also fit into this trope. Mongooses are just ATVs. Warthogs are essentially upgraded and militarized pickup trucks, and are able to be equipped with several types of turrets or modified for troop transport. Scorpion tanks take a bit of a departure from modern tanks in form, but overall the function is very similar; treaded vehicle with a big gun.
  • The SMG in Just Cause 2 is a nice example. It's fairly effective, and, though you can't order it right away, ammo is plentiful, between enemies who use it, and the crate containing one given to you at the start of most faction missions. In addition, any given respawn point (faction HQ) probably contains one for the taking.
  • In Kingdom of Loathing, most classes have special skills like the ability to drown your foe in sauce or dance battle them until they are rendered harmless. Turtle Tamers get the ability to headbutt, knee, and whack them with their shield. Oh, and, they will always hit, the second delevels, and the third stuns, which makes for a very easy fight for as long as your MP keeps up.
  • Cooking food and elixirs in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is the most basic thing you can do in the game, yet the art of cooking can help create some of the most powerful dishes and elixirs in the game that can give Link a massive edge over his enemies. You can potentially create dishes that can restore 20+ hearts with a secondary effect like boosted defense or even make an elixir that can give Link an incredible boost to his attack power for potentially up to 30 minutes if you got the right ingredients.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom puts a lot of emphasis on the huge variety of Zonai Devices you can use to construct machines. But of all the designs the game gives you or that the community has come up with, there is one that's used the most: the "Hoverbike". Just two fans angled down and backward attached to a steering stick, and you've got a small, cheap (only 9 Zonaite to build from nothing), maneuverable, and energy efficient vehicle that can fly, and it won't fall apart after a minute like a vehicle built with a gliding Wing does.
  • In Mass Effect 3, one of the starting weapons is the Mantis sniper rifle. Because it's a starter weapon, it can be easily and quickly upgraded to its full level, is one of the most powerful weapons in-game, and is the lightest sniper rifle, which is a godsend to power-dependant classes. Whatever the Mantis can't One-Hit Kill with a torso shot, it can kill with a headshot.
    • The Omniblade is a valid in-universe example, in which melee applications for the tool were almost as old as the device itself. While it may be useless at range, it proves to be quite effective against the waves of husks the reapers send at them in large numbers.
  • In the Mega Man series, using the regular 'ol Mega Buster is sometimes the best way to defeat certain enemies and bosses.
    • In fact, the deeper you go into the continuity, the better it is to simply wail on bosses with regular charged shots, which has been available since the start of the game. Mega Man ZX makes it blatant with Model X's singular biomerge mode, which can charge up to two shots, the second which ignores Mercy Invincibility, which stronger weapons would be subjected to.
    • Several of the Robot Master Weapons can qualify, but arguably none moreso than the Metal Blade from 2: A thrown blade that can be aimed in 8 directions, takes three shots to reduce the energy bar by one, can wipe out most enemies quickly and is a weakness to half the Robot Masters in it's debut game, including Metal Man himself.
  • Metal Gear:
    • Across the entire series, the iconic cardboard box. Who needs high-tech invisibility camo when you can cozy up in an inconspicuous little box, completely beneath notice, and even trick your enemies into quite literally delivering you straight into the heart of their heavily-guarded installation?
    • From Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, the Mk22 tranquilliser gun sees a lot of mileage over flashier weapons because it is silent, very accurate, able to instantly incapacitate with a headshot (ideal for a Pacifist Run) and it's even quite satisfying to use in boss fights because killing them non-lethally nets you special camos with unique abilities (The Pain's lets you control hornets, Ocelot's eliminates handshaking while aiming in first-person, The Fear grants you 80% camo everywhere at the cost of very high stamina drain, etc.)
    • The simple knife from the same game also qualifies. Grab an enemy and threaten him with it to get special information, instantly kill him, and also very handy in the boss fight against The Fury, because it rips up his suit and leaves him vulnerable to grenades and explosives.
  • Metal Slug has the Heavy Machine Gun. Yes it's the most basic special weapon in the game, but it has so many advantages. It's a fun, versatile weapon that has good firepower per shot and fast rate of fire, but most importantly it's got a whopping 250 shots when most special weapons have between 10 to 25. This is important because as soon as you run out of ammo, you'll be stuck with your peashooter of a pistol and it may be a long time before a new weapon shows up.
  • In Metro 2033, you have not one, not two, but three types of shotguns. The Uboinik is a perfect semi-automatic with a capacity of six shells and a rather nasty melee attack, but its reload is awkward to put it mildly and, due to a glitch, it fogs up even your watch when you try to look at it (it's supposed to fog up only the background). The Heavy Automatic Shotgun has a 20-round capacity and a good fire rate, but its firepower per shot leaves much to be desired. On the other hand, the humble, crudely-made and extremely common Duplet, a double-barrel, has a no-nonsense operation and the highest punch of the selection (especially when discharging both barrels), and its drawback - rather short range - isn't much of an issue in the cramped tunnels you spend the majority of the game traversing through.
  • Metroid's humble but mighty Screw Attack. All you have to do is jump to one side or the other, and Samus' armor is electrified, killing most enemies on contact.
    • The Space Jump: while spin jumping, jump again in midair to go higher up than you could with a normal jump. As many times as you want!
    • Super Missiles, particularly in the Metroid Prime Trilogy series. They're by far the most cost-effective ammo weapon available, doing considerable damage in exchange for a mere five regular missiles and a brief charging period.
  • Minecraft:
    • Dirt. It doesn't look nice, and let's be honest who in their right mind want to build with dirt in a game that has everything Minecraft has to offer, but it's everywhere and can quickly be mined by hand. You should always have a slot of 64 blocks of dirt no matter what you're doing, as it makes ideal scaffolding for builds, makes quick bridges and ladders, "absorbing" water and lava, and can be used to block enemies.
    • Cobblestone. It's everywhere, it's fireproof, it's easy to mine, it can be used to craft tools, a variety of builing blocks, and many valuable items like furnaces and redstone components, and it can be generated infinitely with a simple setup that allows water and lava to flow together. There's a reason why pakratt13 was able to make an entire miniseries out of trying to play Minecraft without cobblestone, because this stuff is simple yet invaluable.
    • Stone tools don't last very long, and a stone pickaxe can only mine stuff as fancy as iron and copper, but they never-the-less should be a mainstay in your toolbox as they can be made from sticks and any kind of stone. You will always have stone on hand to make a pick or a sword, and it will save wear and tear on your better tools so you can devote less rare minerals to making them.
    • Deepslate is so simple, yet so versatile it is like playing with a cheat code. It can be crafted into a myriad of variants, each with stairs, slabs, walls, and the like, is one of the nicest looking building materials in the game, and is found everywhere. Just dig straight down wherever you plan to build, and you'll find an unlimited supply of it if you go down far enough.
    • Melons may not restore much hunger, and don't sell for much, but are a very handy item for a myriad of reasons. They're not the only food that can be eaten raw, or the only food that can be renewably grown without replanting, or the only food that can be sold to villagers, or the only food that can be grown with a simple automated farm, or the only food that can be used as a potion ingredient, but they are the only food that can do all of these things. Better yet, the automated farm is not only incredibly simple, consisting of nothing more than an observer, piston, and hopper, but it can be modularly extended indefinitely as you go with a simple minecart collection system. And if that isn't enough, the potions melon slices serve as ingredients for are potions of healing and potions of weakness, two of the most useful potions in the game.
    • Mooshrooms. There's a reason these things only spawn in the incredibly rare Mushroom Biomes, because they are basically an unlimited food dispenser. You can milk them as many times as you like for Mushroom Stew, an unstackable but pretty decent foodstuff. Great to have one in your base to feed yourself when you return, allowing you to save your stacks of simpler foods to take out into the field.
    • Speaking of stacks of simpler foods, carrots are an amazing foodstuff despite how simple and unimpressive their 3 hunger / 3.6 saturation boost may seem, especially in the early game. They are fast growing, have a high yield of 2-5 carrots per harvest (averaging 3), are simply planted as-is (not requiring mucking about with seeds), and don't need to be cooked. You can devote very little actual land to a carrot farm and yet have enough of a yield that you always have several stacks of 64 food items to spare, which doesn't need to be cooked or prepared in any way, which renders their low boosts to hunger a moot point. They also can breed pigs and can be crafted into Golden Carrots, one of the best food items in the game.
    • Bamboo may not seem like it's worth much, offering one stick per two bits of bamboo, requiring 4 to smelt even one item, and requiring 9 to make a single bamboo block, but this stuff just grows so bloody easy and fast that it offers one of the most versatile and easily renewable resources in the game. It grows on pretty much anything, doesn't require water, is quickly harvested with a sword, grows incredibly high giving it a tiny footprint when farming, will fully grow to 16 blocks high on average in only 50 minutes, and will continually grow without replanting so long as you don't destroy the bottom-most block (meaning an automated farm is also incredibly simple). Despite this simpleness, bamboo will offer you a neverending fuel source, source of blocks, components for tools and ladders, and even a rather reliable source of income if you find yourself a fletcher to sell sticks to, and it is the only means of making scaffolding.
    • Shields. For the cost of a single iron ingot and 6 planks of any kind, which you can easily gather within minutes of starting a new world with a tiny bit of know-how, can negate more damage than Diamond Armor. It will completely tank arrows, physical blows, fireballs, and even Creeper explosions, and the only "drawback" is you need to hold the shield up between you and the oncoming attack.
    • A single bucket of water will carry you far in the game. Up high and need to reach a low level? Use the bucket to create a waterfall to ride down. Falling to your death? With a well-timed bucket you can absorb the impact entirely. Found some lava? No, you found some obsidian for a portal or enchanting table. Lit on fire? Not anymore. It's also instrumental in making properly irrigated farms, and you can also dump the water to swap it for lava, milk, or snow, or to carry aquatic wildlife to a pond. Not bad at all for the meager investment of three iron ingots,
  • Mini Robot Wars has the Missler Bots, which are cheap units that fire homing missles. They're not the flashiest units, but they're considered the most broken units in the game because they deal great damage in groups, cost only 50 energy to place and can can hit any enemy on the screen.
  • Mirror's Edge: Everything you can do in the game can be done in real life, albeit with a lot of practice and a lot more pain. Yes, even that three-story jump you just did in a cutscene.
  • Mordheim: City of the Damned's basic Henchmen are often this. While high quality henchmen can be very good normally, such as the Marksman (who's the best ranged unit in the game), almost all henchmen can be turned into a Hero unit with the skill "Lad's Got Talent" and could end up becoming one of your better heroes (for example a Darksoul that became a hero would easily be the tankiest hero for a Cult of the Possessed warband).
  • One Finger Death Punch has very basic graphics and exactly two moves. Click left to attack to your left. Click right to attack to your right. With just two buttons, the game turns your little stick man into a Bruce Lee Clone par excellence, with more style and combat pacing than games with twenty times the budget.
  • Overwatch:
    • Soldier: 76 plays like a regular first-person-shooter protagonist would: a high-powered rifle, a sprint button, an area-of-effect healing ability, and an aimbot as his ultimate move. All in all, a very generic and scattered skillset. However, his raw damage output, high accuracy, fast movement speed and decent healing capabilities makes him one of the most balanced characters in the game, and allows him to do almost any job fairly well, even if he isn't the best at anything.
    • It is a common complaint among players that all Bastion has to do to win the game is to sit in turret mode and hold down the left trigger. Which isn't entirely wrong. A good Bastion will occasionally mix things up with its self-healing ability and relocate if things get too hairy, but it'll still be sitting in one spot and firing its minigun for most of the match because of how effective it is.
    • Lucio is this for support characters. Lucio's healing works as an area of effect, providing a passive healing buff to all his team in the generous range. All Lucio has to do is hang around and not die, which his high mobility is great for. In skilled hands, Lucio can be a highly mobile harasser as well as a healer, and with good positioning, he can instakill enemies by knocking them into pits and wall-riding on hard-to-reach terrain.
  • Painkiller (2003): Many modern First-Person Shooter games have a deep story, tactical gameplay, and realism. Painkiller, however, went back to basics; realism is only a suggestion and the only missions are to kill all the monsters and demons in the highly varied levels. You basic weapons, the Painkiller, and Shotgun remain effective for the entire game, and are the signature weapons of the main character.
  • Viktor and Tyra from Paladins are Damage Champions that are rather plain in comparison to everyone else. Victor, much like Soldier: 76 can dash, lob grenades, and aim down his sights and his ult shoots three missiles. Tyra chooses fire power over accuracy and can use her grenade launcher or firebombs to punish clusters while marking enemies with Hunter's Mark to add a 15% damage boost and her ult lets her pump out even more lead. All in all these skills are not flashy and not very well suited to anything else. However Viktor is well suited to popping in and out of fights and scoring headshots and his ult can and will force the other team to disperse off the point while Tyra can provide covering fire and deal major damage to select targets.
  • Pharaoh: In many levels, you have the choice between Archers, which cost nothing to build but are weak in combat and Infantry, which are much better in combat, but require copper ore (which can be imported, but it's expensive) and a weaponsmith to create (as weapons are ludicrously expensive to import). Later levels (though not all of them) let you build chariots, which only require wood (much more common than copper, faster to harvest, and far cheaper to import), have a ranged attack like archers, move much faster, and have a strong melee attack. Some levels even let you export them, and they're the only items more expensive than weapons.
  • Plants vs. Zombies gives us the Puffshroom, a small, weak shooting plant with limited range. Since they are free and have a fast recharge time though, they are immensely useful throughout the match since they can basically be spammed both offensively and defensively with impugnity. You can fill the field with them while you save up for better plants, plop them in front of zombies or other plants for an easy (if not very effective) defense, easily replace one that fell prey to a zombie, and dig them up the second you can put a better plant in their face for no loss. It's too bad you can't easily use them during the day, because these simple little guys rule. And even then, some players will bring them along during the day anyway for one simple reason: they might not be able to shoot back, but they're still plants that the zombies have to eat through, making them great as improvised barricades that cost nothing to replace. Perfect for stalling out early waves while you stockpile sun or holding back a Gargantuar while your attacking plants whittle it down.
  • Pokémon:
    • Some early Com Mons evolve early while gaining impressive power and/or versatility. Of particular note are Starly, whose final evolution Staraptor can nearly beat the game by itself, and the Nidoran line with both Nidoking and Nidoqueen having well rounded stats, massive movepools, and cool looking designs. The latter also qualifies as a Disc-One Nuke in most games where they're available.
    • Most Mega Evolutions change how a Pokemon fights via changing their typing, ability, and/or stat distribution. But some of them amount to "the same but more" note  and play exactly the same in and out of Mega Evolution, so players don't have to make customized move sets that are less than stellar outside of Mega Evolution, such as if another pokemon already mega evolved or if the mega evolved pokemon got knocked out and revived.
  • Project Clean Earth has various equipable mods for your combat robot Bernard. Easily one of the most useful is the rifle mod. It gives him a gun with mid-level power but great range and a very fast firing rate. In a game with very little effective crowd-control, AOE weapons having a gun that can fire times a second can really thin out an enemy line. Additionally it's available at the 1st mission.
  • In Project Zomboid, cabbages are a staple food source owing to this. They give a decent dose of calories, protein, and carbs, and reduce hunger and thirst by a modest amount, and they are very easy to grow in large quantities. They can also be used to trap rabbits, and their seeds can be found everywhere.
  • Rhythm Games:
    • Interfaces that use an interface consisting of notes scrolling down (or up) in separate lanes per button. A very simple setup, popularized by beatmania, but it's extremely easy to sightreadnote  notes on and allows for the creation of crazy hard charts that don't rely on Trial-and-Error Gameplay.
    • Beatmania itself. While it has received a number of interface enhancements, it has only had three changes ever done to its core gameplay: the addition of two new buttons, the option to play with the turntable on the left, and the addition of "hold"-type notes. Other than that, the simple whack-a-mole-esque formula of "notes fall down, hit the right buttons when they reach the red line" has not changed in almost twenty years.
    • pop'n music is even simpler, foregoing a turntable for two more buttons. It has been around almost as long as Beatmania.
    • DanceDanceRevolution, In the Groove, and Pump It Up: Four or five directional foot panels and scrolling notes, with the same simplicity as the above rhythm games. And they're great for cardiovascular workout, too.
      • The game gives you a sensor bar as wide as the screen above it that's 1:1 with the chart interface, on which you hit notes corresponding to their horizontal position on the screen, while ocasionally lifting your hands to hit "Air" notes. Super easy to learn, yet has the potential for absolutely Nintendo Hard charts. No wonder it's one of the most popular arcade rhythm games in Japan.
      • Its scoring system is quite simple too. Scoring is based purely on hitting notes accurately. A "Justice Critical" hit is a 101%, "Justice" is 100%, "Attack" is 50%, and "Miss" is 0%. The maximum score is 1.01 million points. Since a Justice hit is only worth slightly less than a Justice Critical, casual players can still get good scores without having to focus on getting Justice Critical and not just Justice, while for advanced players, the challenge of getting all Justice Critical still exists.
  • Rune Factory 3: Medium Cheese and Toasted Rice Balls are two of the first and simplest recopies you can learn in the game. They are also two of the strongest recovery items in the game, restoring 75% RP (mana) and 75% HP respectively. They're also far cheaper to make than stronger items and far stronger than the cheaper ones.
  • Shadowverse: Aggro decks, in general, are like this, as they are not only easy to play in ladder, but many aggro decks are also relatively easy to assemble since most aggro decks usually don't run a lot of expensive Legendary cards and even if they do, they usually run one set of a Legendary card that defines their aggro deck (Albert for aggro Sword and Carabosse for aggro Blood and even so, there are reasonable cheaper alternatives to use on curve). Aggro Forest plays this trope straight, as aggro Forest doesn't run any legendary cards and have very simplistic combos to execute with Elf Song and Beetle Warrior.
  • The eponymous protagonist of Sonic the Hedgehog is known for simply running really, really fast. It looks cool and he's saved the world countless times by getting where he needs to be very quickly.
  • StarCraft:
    • It's simply a bunch of Marines and Medics and can win the entire game if enough of them are used. Basically the same thing as the Zerg Rush, which also counts as Simple, yet Awesome.
      • The sequel replaces this with Marines and Marauders. Marines shoot while Marauders tank damage and slow units down; both are relatively inexpensive and can use Stimpacks to drown opponents in a tide of fast-moving firepower. This is pretty much the standard composition of almost any Terran army.
    • The Protoss Dragoon is available shortly after your first Gateway is constructed and looks quite "neat" being a quadrupedal spider tank. Respectable Hit Points combined with an anti-armor/anti-air "Phase Disruptor" ensures the Dragoon a place in a well-balanced army. Upgrade them with "Singularity Charge" and their range increases from 4-squares to 6 (Half the range of Terran Siege Tanks in artillery mode). The Dragoons return in Legacy of the Void, and are much simpler than either Stalkers or Adepts but are no less awesome for it.
    • Besides the (in)famous Zergling, the Hydralisk is another mascot for the Zerg army. They're Snake People-like beasts that use shoulder-mounted biological needles to penetrate armor and provide anti-air. As a matter of fact, if you win a match as Zerg, your victory screen shows a Hydralisk posed triumphantly over skulls; it can be speculated the Hydralisk was a favorite among Blizzard Entertainment at the time.
  • Starcraft II:
    • Universal:
      • The game introduced a feature that made the Zerg (and any race for that matter) much easier to play: a button to select your entire army at once. It's very handy for locating lost units across the map and bringing them home to join your forces.
      • The "grid layout" for hotkeys is a simple concept: The game's hotkeys are generally mapped to the keyboard rows of qwert, asdfg, zxcvb. Once you get used to it, this helps reduce reaching across the keyboard allowing the keyboard hand to have unstrained access to much of the game's control functions, and makes it easier to pick up and play any of the three factions. If something doesn't suit you, you can remap many of the auxilary features too.
    • Terrans:
      • The campaign had an upgrade for ghosts/specters that meant their cloaking no longer used energy, allowing players to have permanently cloaked scouts.
      • One of the research options in Wings of Liberty campaign fuses the tech lab and reactor into a new building that lets you build two of any unit at a given building.
      • The mutually exclusive Protoss Research options, Ultra Capacitors and Vanadium Plating, improve by a factor of 5%, your weapon speed or Hit Points respectively relative to the level of upgrades on units.

        For example, this means your simple Marines can have around 15% haste on their weapons and use Stimpacks (50% haste) on top of that for incredible haste on their attacks. The effects are multiplactive, so each level multiplies the effect by the forumula (1.05 * <current stats>).
    • Zerg:
      • One of the campaign exclusive units in Heart of the Swarm is an Aberration - a fast-moving, hard-hitting monster that is also fairly durable. And its only special ability is Towering, which allows it to move over units, negating one major disadvantage large melee units have.
      • On the higher difficulties of Heart of the Swarm campaign, a mix of Roaches and Hydralisks will win most fights, especially if supported by Queens for healing. The beefier Roaches tank damage while the fragile Hydralisks burn down enemies in a heartbeat.
    • Protoss:
      • Sentinels in Legacy of the Void are not as awesome as spinning, axe-wielding Aiur Zealots or teleport-charging, stun-inflicting Centurions, but Sentinels' ability to revive themself after being destroyed makes them best at the role Zealots and their variants are generally used - meat-shielding.
      • The campaign-only Avenger is mutually exclusive from the more offensive Dark Templar or anti-detection Blood Hunter, but the Avenger's special ability is simple but very economical: Upon death, they automatically teleport back to your Dark Shrine (be sure to build one or they'll die), and are restored to full health. Be sure to let the teleport cool down before placing your Avengers in danger and they can be rescued from death indefinitely, saving significant resources. Albeit, for experienced players, Avengers veer into Low-Tier Letdown as the Nerazim Dark Templar has higher contribution with their Shadow Fury, letting them slice through five Zerglings quickly (at 35 damage per swipe), or use that damage against tougher targets to quickly bring them down to size. Alternatively, Blood Hunters can lock down single priority targets with a stasis effect that also disable detection, preventing them from dying anyway and letting them raze bases unimpeded as a squad if you take care to sweep the area for detectors.
  • Stardew Valley: One of the simplest and best ways to make money early on is growing wheat (a cheap staple crop that grows across summer and fall and is immediately accessible from Pierre's shop) and putting it in a keg to make beer. Beer takes just a day or two to brew and sells for a good initial price, but you can put it back in the keg to further improve its quality — from silver to gold and finally iridium quality, which goes for 400g a piece (+40% more with the Artisan perk, though it takes 14 days to get iridium beer from basic beer). And if you don't want to sell it, nearly everybody likes receiving beer as a gift.
  • Super Mario Bros.:
    • Jumping on enemies to crush them is the most basic movement in the series, but it quickly gets fun when you make it on flying enemies above pits or bounce above a line of Goombas.
    • Kicking Koopa shells is the most basic move Mario has, but nothing is more satisfying than kicking a shell and watching it take out a line of enemies and/or breaking all the blocks to clear a path for you.
    • Super Mario Bros. 2 has enemy and item tossing. You'll be doing a lot of throwing throughout the game since it's your only way to attack due to the Goomba Stomp not being an option, but nothing gets more fun than throwing enemies against other enemies or throwing vegetables, keys, and blocks at your foes.
  • The Super Smash Bros. series has King K. Rool's entrance. Other fighters generally start matches by entering the stage in various fancy and stylish ways (the Mario brothers coming out of pipes, the Star Fox cast, Captain Falcon and Wario driving in their vehicles, Kirby using his warp star, Mr. Game & Watch fading in, etc), while the Kremling king simply falls in from above, followed by his crown. Not only is it a neat reference to his first appearance in the DKC series, he still makes his entrance memorable by doing it with his arms crossed.
    • It also has Mega Man's Mega Buster, just like in his own series. Out of all his various weapons, it's the most readily, practical one to use (despite the shots travelling a shorter distance), since it's pretty handy for edgeguarding purposes. Your opponent tries to come back? Pelt them with it, and watch them fall.
  • Team Fortress 2: The Spy's main weapon is a simple butterfly knife. It's the weakest melee weapon...unless you hit them in the back, resulting in an instant kill. This knife has been the bane of players everywhere since the beginning of Team Fortress 2.
    • What many pro-players consider to be the greatest class in the game is the Soldier: Rocket Launcher, Shotgun, Shovel. The sheer amount of stuff people pull off with Rocket Jumping is amazing, and the class is known for being able to switch from defensive positions to ultra-aggressive bombing runs within a matter of seconds.
  • In 10tons's Tesla vs. Lovecraft, the Dodge perk gives you a 25% chance of not taking any damage from any attack on Tesla. Meanwhile the Extra Barrel perk will give any gun a big improvement in crowd control and inflicting damage, plus it can be taken multiple times. Finally the Epic Perk, Motherlode, just gives you 100 Aether Crystals. But in a game where you'd be lucky to get 3 Aether Crystals and your invention improvements requires lots of crystals, those 100 crystals can greatly improve your character permanently in a game that's otherwise has Bag of Spilling.
  • Take every shape that you can make by rearranging four squares of identical size. Give them to the player one by one and task them with stacking them so as to minimize empty spaces between blocks. Increase speed as the game progresses. Tetris. Awesome.
  • In various Tin Man Games electronic Game Books, there's an achievement called Armed and another one called Protected for finding the best weapon and armor in the game. In a number of the books, it's not something magical - the best items are simply...a longsword and a suit of plate armor.
  • Tyrian is another game where the deceptively simple 'laser' turns out to be completely overpowered. When you first play the game you might think to pass it up in favor of weapons with fancier names like the Hyper Pulse, Mega Cannon, and Sonic Impulse, but a laser upgraded to level 11 (and with a good enough generator to power it) is pretty much a continuously - firing Wave-Motion Cannon that can clear most enemies from the screen instantly and even makes short work of most bosses.
  • In Warframe some of the most practical weapons are the bows. Completely silent with good critical hit rates, good damage multipliers, and can even punch through both thin cover as well as multiple enemies. With the right mods you can boost their damage further and ensure you'll never run out of ammo.
    • In yet another example of Shotguns Are Just Better, two of the most sought-after guns in the game are the Tigris series (regular, Sancti and Prime), and the Sobek. The former is a Tenno take on the mundane hunting shotgun, complete with wood finish and shrapnel pellets, which actually integrates rather well into the game by giving it the highest damage-per-bullet score. The latter is a Grineer-made auto-shotgun with a 20-round drum mag loaded with buckshot charges, and one of the earliest armaments available to new players, who may disregard it for flashier-looking guns... Or at least, until they're strong and seasoned enough to farm for its exclusive mod, Acid Shells, giving to the gun a respectable crowd-control effect and innate Anti-Armor, which is the defining factor for veteran players.
    • Warframe abilities can let you do anything from crush your foes with devastating magnetic fields, banish a hostile's brains into a pocket dimension while leaving the rest of them in realspace, fry your enemies with millions of amps of power, or even raise their spirits back from the dead to fight on your side. The most practical and fondly-used powers? Crowd control binding or stunning attacks, and healing abilities.
    • In the backstory, this trope had to be invoked. The evil "Sentients" could automatically take control of any technology more advanced than a colt revolver. Thus almost all Tenno weapons lack anything computerized or electronic, but they're no less deadly for it. Granted, this was only true for the magic space ninjas themselves; the 'zero-tech troopers,' regular humans sent into combat with leather armor and bolt-action rifles, got the significantly shorter end of the stick.

  • Muko's first match in Furry Fight Chronicles only has her use two wrestling moves she learned from Cookie since the match was going to take place in one week. The first was a drop kick and the second was a clothesline. Both are basic wrestling techniques, but they're still flashy and powerful enough to make the fight look and feel realistic to the audience.
  • In The Green-Eyed Sniper, Sekhmet's weapon of choice is a rather powerful and effective shotgun. Given the chance, she likes to aim at her opponent's legs and finish them with a shot to the head.
  • In The Order of the Stick, Xykon can be surprisingly pragmatic when he decides to be serious, and his backstory is largely defined by learning how his simple sorcery can be more useful than the more complex, showy power of a wizard.
    "All you need is power, in as great a concentration as you can muster, and style. And in a pinch, style can slide."

    Web Original 
  • Scratch, a simple programming language developed by MIT and made to look like a puzzle game, can be used to make massively multiplayer online games.
  • A Big Enough Rock. Don't underestimate the damage potential of a sufficiently big rock thrown at the right spot.

    Web Video 
  • Stampy's Lovely World:
    • Stampy's bedroom has a fairly plain design, even for something first built in 2012, but has since become one of the most iconic and easily recognizable builds in the Minecraft community. Since the original design's destruction by HitTheTarget in Episode 733, "Christmas Invasion", the redesign becomes more elaborate and intricate, though still resembling the original design.
    • This further extends to the rest of Stampy's house — while only made of oak wood and sandstone on the outside (before the bedroom expansion, at least), it has long been one of the most iconic builds in the Minecraft community as well. In Episode 734, "My New Bedroom", Stampy thinks that it looks a bit basic in terms of materials and chalks it up to him being a noob when he built the house, but in his defense at the time, oak wood was the only plank variety in the Console edition back in 2012, so he didn't have much of a choice in the matter anyway.
  • In this Super Mario Bros. parody of Pokémon GO, Luigi's focus on capturing Goombas initially comes across as part-Boring, but Practical and part-Cloudcuckoolandery, especially when he battles Mario and his new Chain Chomp. Instead, not only does said Goomba manage to invoke Critical Hit via Hyper Beam before being defeated, but it also turns out that Luigi preemptively caught a whole horde of them — versus Mario's now-Awesome, but Impractical focus on capturing a single Chain Chomp due to Rule of Cool. Cue both justified Oh, Crap! reaction from Mario and a moment of action for Luigi.
  • When DLC was announced for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Nintendo wanted a custom video for each announced character. The first, Persona 5 's Joker, was full of slick editing, narration and even voice acting from the game's cast. Unfortunately, the production values for the video cost serious money - more money than the relatively small company that produces Smash was able to commit to all future characters. So starting with Dragon Quest 's Hero, Smash's director, Masahiro Sakurai, produced the presentation video himself. The presentation was very bare-bones, little more than a lightly-edited livestream, and much more primitive than the Nintendo-sponsored videos Sakurai made for Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. Despite this, reception was much more enthusiastic than to the Joker video, as Mr. Sakurai's natural dorky charisma and genuinely impressive demonstrations of skill won over a lot of fans. Sakurai continued to make videos for each successive character, (even hosting from his own living room for a time due to the COVID-19 pandemic) and many fans consider a new "Mr. Sakurai Presents" to be an inherent part of the excitement that comes with a Smash character reveal.
  • Instead of getting close up against vampires and zombies in Vaguely Recalling JoJo, Jonathan Joestar infuses his revolver shots with the Ripple.

    Western Animation 
  • Ben 10: Fourarms is an alien form that grants Ben Super-Strength and 2 extra arms. Not very flashy, but his fighting capabilities more than make up for it.
    • There is also Way Big, who is one of the Omnitrix's most powerful aliens, surpassed only by Atomix and Alien X.
    • Another example is Toepick, whose sole power is having a Nightmare Face that can terrify anything that isn't blind, emotionless or Ma Vreedle (she's seen worse).
  • Castlevania: A group of unnamed farmers manage to kill a large chunk of Striga's platoon of vampires just by lighting their tents on fire during the day.
  • OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes: In stark contrast to the other Boxmore robots, Ernesto eschews theatrics and fancy special attacks in favor of simply converting to ball mode and rolling over his enemies. He’s extremely durable and heavy, so it’s an absolutely devastating move when used properly (and it’s very easy to use). Using this simple technique, he’s probably come the closest to defeating the Plaza heroes in a straight fight.
  • Phineas and Ferb: In the episode "Norm Unleashed", Dr. Doofenshmirtz gets saddled with jury duty and leaves the evil scheme of the day to his robot assistant Norm. Norm decides to eschew his creator's modus operandi of complex -inators and instead outfits himself with an arsenal of weaponry to forcibly take control of the Tri-State Area.
  • The Powerpuff Girls Twas The Fight Before Christmas: As the girls race Princess Morbucks to Santa's workshop, Princess laser-carves a huge ice chunk from the side of a mountain - in the shape of her own face, no less - and hurls it at the girls, crashing them to the ground. While she thinks this gives her the lead, she is swiftly taken down (literally and figuratively):
    Princess: How did you like my "stocking stuffer"?
    [Immediately gets hit in the face with a snowball, which brings her crashing to the ground]
    Buttercup: "Stuff" that! [To Blossom and Bubbles] I can't believe that worked.
  • Xiaolin Showdown: The first episode about Clay is centered around this trope. He completes the obstacle course faster than his teammates by turning around and taking the objective directly behind him — since the course is arranged in a circle, he sees no reason to go through the traps to reach the goal. Later he beats Jack Spicer in a showdown involving catching a bird — Jack gets beaten and bruised chasing it, while Clay fills his hat with seeds from nearby sunflowers to get the bird to come to him.


Video Example(s):


Basin Thing

The Basin doesnt have a lot of flashy effects or music, simply dropping on foes quickly. Its still as powerful as the other Things.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (16 votes)

Example of:

Main / SimpleYetAwesome

Media sources: