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Vendor Trash

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"Some may call this junk. Me, I call them treasures."

Vendor Trash is a kind of item found mostly in RPGs, but it can appear in other genres. This item doesn't heal you or buff you, it can't be equipped, it doesn't harm the enemy when you throw it, it won't open the Sealed Cave of the Sidequest or encourage the palace guard to finally let you see the king, and it can't be combined with other items to do any of the above. In fact, having it does nothing but take up space in your inventory. You might as well throw it in the trash.

But wait a second - one man's trash is another man's treasure, and didn't the shopkeeper tell you We Buy Anything?

Vendors throughout the realm will pay money for useless trinkets like that! Money. Money that you can use to buy something actually useful (maybe). Sometimes a respectable amount, too, depending on the nature of the item. In rare cases, the Vendor Trash actually appreciates in value throughout the game!


This will often take the form of gold or jewels - if those aren't the very things which constitute the Global Currency. The term Vendor Trash can also refer to the weak items and equipment that accumulate in your inventory as you progress through the game (especially by fighting Random Encounters), and that you inevitably sell off in bulk to the first shopkeeper you see once your bag starts becoming full. In fact some of the examples, particularly for MMORPGs, are instituted as Anti Poopsocking methods. If the player has limited inventory space, she or he must eventually return to a vendor in order to sell off the goods, usually in a safer place that makes a good stopping point. That said, this trope can also cause frustration if you're grinding for cash - you have five giant rat tails, two minotaur horns and a small gem. Is that enough to get you the 2,000 gold you need for your next equipment upgrade? If you haven't been keeping track of the vendor trash resale rates, the only way to find out is to head back to the store and sell them, making it hard to know when to stop grinding, or force a lot of back and forth trips.


It can frequently be Justified if the Vendor Trash is some sort of valuable treasure item like a jeweled ring or a bar of gold, or anything else that could reasonably be considered valuable in Real Life. Vendor Trash also offers an opportunity for clever World Building if the player finds out what the merchants actually do with the things you sell them. It could also be items that have no utility to the player because the game is not designed around the uses those items would have but would logically have a use in the world, such as vases, plates, spoons, etc. Alternately, it could be justified by there being some sort of standing bounty on the monsters that drop those items, such as a kingdom paying for every orc tongue delivered. (But those aside, vendor trash types of items can become rather silly when they really are useless things which it seems like no one at all would have any use for, ever.)

The examples here can be both intentional and unintentional.

This is often used to avoid the Money Spider trope. Don't be too hasty to sell it, though, because you might need it to complete a Chain of Deals later. Just don't start a rumor it can be used for a hidden event.


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    Action Adventure 
  • Ōkami:
    • The various Treasures, most of which was pottery and figurines. Issun even recommends selling them, because what else would Physical God Amaterasu need them for?
    • Mre most of the fish you fish up in the Fishing Minigame. However, considering Ammy still eats and pees, one wonders why she can't just eat the fish.
    • If you collect all 100 Stray Beads you get the game's Infinity Plus One Weapon. In the sequel, Ōkamiden, they're the cheapest type of Vendor Trash you can get.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker introduced a character who accepted monster-dropped Vendor Trash items for rewards above simple cash. However, this was never expressly stated in the dialogue with him.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass, there's a whole line of treasure items (Goron Amber, Ruto Crown, etc.) that are nothing but vendor trash. The exact amount for each item varies from game to game and there is a way to trade these items between games to increase your profit.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, treasures were changed to be useful to make new train parts, but still perfectly good as vendor trash if you didn't need more of that part.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword also has a whole slew of random treasures and bugs that can be used to upgrade your items (the treasures) and enhance potions (bugs) but they can also be sold off to the correct NPCs at certain times.
    • In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, selling vendor junk is about the only way to farm rupees, as you can no longer get rupees from slashing weeds or killing most enemies (the exception being the Yiga clan soldiers), and smashing pots for money has been nerfed dramatically. Most item drops do have non-monetary uses, but many of them are so common that you end up with far more of them than you could possibly use, or (in the case of gems) selling them is just more beneficial. Kilton's special "mon" currency can only be acquired by selling monster parts to him.
  • Castlevania
  • Basically spoofed in The Game of the Ages, where you struggle to sell an old life preserver you found. You eventually get a single coin for it, a coin that proves essential.
  • The large refractors you find in Mega Man Legends 2 are only good for selling for some cash. Even though the description explicitly states this, many players remembered back to the first game where the large refractors were important Plot Coupons and were reluctant to sell them, thinking they might ultimately find some manner of machine to stick them in.
  • Brave Fencer Musashi had some fun with the concept, as you find items in dungeons but need to have them appraised before they can be used. They will always have a vague, and often misleading, description based on what Musashi thought it was when he picked it up. The Old Shield turns out to just be a frisbee and the Helmet turns out to be a bedpan (let's hope he didn't try it on), while things like the "Ugly Belt" turns out to be the L-Belt which lets him Double Jump. The "treasure" that ends up being worthless and mundane junk is only worth selling to Connors for some extra money.
  • Mystik Belle has countless junk items strewn about the game world, which can be disposed of in the Dumpster. Doing so with all of them yields an achievement.
  • Hollow Knight has four different types of relics that can be sold to Lemm, each with it's own price. Unlike most games, it's advisable NOT to sell them immediately, and instead hold onto them until you're actually planning on buying something as to avoid the consequence of lost geo on death. Lemm will also give a lore blurb when selling some relics.
    • In addition, the Rancid Eggs also become this in a Steel Soul playthrough. In a normal playthrough, Rancid Eggs are used as an Anti-Frustration Feature to retrieve your Shade without difficulty. Since the services of the NPC who takes them are made useless due to Steel Soul being a Final Death Mode, said NPC is replaced by a new one named Steel Soul Jinn, who offers you money for the eggs. As a consequence, Tuk (the NPC in the Royal Waterways who sells you Rancid Eggs) is dead so as not to abuse this feature for infinite money.

    Collectible Card Game 
  • Foil versions of common but used cards (many players love their Bling of War). The Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game has special packs as participation prizes for local events, where the commons are reprints of hard-to-get cards... and the rares are foil versions of the commons people use.
  • The Shadowrun Card Game included a gun whose specific purpose was as vendor trash so you could buy a better gun.
  • Magic: The Gathering has many Junk Rares; cards that are indeed rare but have no real competitive value. Head designer Mark Rosewater coined the phrase "rare but well done" to describe them. Their rarity means they can still be sold for a pretty penny, but they usually go to collectors looking to fill out their collection rather than competitive players seeking to actually use them.
  • In the Shandalar Magic: the Gathering computer game, this is the only realistic source of early-game gold; always accept cards when winning a battle, then find the nearest town and sell the bad ones.

    Edutainment Game 
  • In The Oregon Trail II and up, you can buy many useless items such as butter churns (useless even if you have milk cows), cast iron stoves, furniture, china, bags of beads, certain folk medicines and spices, sacks of sugar (you don't seem to use them), gun holsters (which don't protect you from accidental gunshots) etc, that serve no purpose other than to make your wagon heavier and increase the risk of tipping over. Then again, you can trade them for essentials later. They can also be seen as a Self-Imposed Challenge by making the game more historically accurate, and bringing things that would only be useful when you get there.

    Fighting Game 
  • Pretty much all of the best items in Dissidia Final Fantasy require the trading of various vendor trash items, the majority of which can only be generated by battling specific characters or won in the game's Duel Coliseum. The best of the best items are often created from combining the items you've already generated along with even better vendor trash.

    First Person Shooter 
  • Borderlands
    • While everything you find in Borderlands 1 is either money, equipment or ammo, the fact that most of the equipment is randomly generated and usually a few levels below you (if it's even a type of weapon you like to use or a class mod compatible with your class), most of it is vendor trash. In fact, there is a unique gun in the game, Knoxx's Gold, which has the special power of being good vendor trash (its sale value is very high), though it can appear with such a good set of parts complementing its base that it becomes a Punch-Packing Pistol that's not worth selling for a while.
    • Borderlands 2 kicks it down a notch: every single gun you find has at least acceptable accuracy, capacity and fire rate, with the only true deciding factors being damage, recoil, recoil reduction and reload speed. You can use the very first pistol you find in the game until a good way into the Southern Shelf no problem, and that's only because the mooks will have outleveled its firepower. It's still played straight with most class/grenade mods, relics and shields, though.
    • Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel! gets a chance to play with and lampoon the trope: one side quest has you collecting 50 common-rarity guns for donation, and at one point the quest giver even says that the common quality guns are cheap and worthless. At the same time, if you have common loot you don't want, you have the option to throw it into Springs' Grinder and randomly generate a higher-rarity piece of equipment instead of just selling it.
  • The majority of stealables in the Thief games. The entire point of the games (at least initially) is that he steals valuable trinkets for a living. You can't pay the rent with arrows and smoke bombs, at least not in a way that won't attract guard attention.
  • Protective artifacts in STALKER: Shadow Of Chernobyl absorb a deplorable amount of the damage they guard you against (5% at the very most), in exchange for a prohibitive rate of radiation per secondexceptions . The only conceivable use you'd have for them is if you have an anti-rad artifact and no other good ones to put on your belt. Fortunately, they fetch as much of a price as all other artifacts, including the good ones. Clear Sky and Call of Pripyat use different mechanics for artifacts, so a truly worthless one is much rarer.
  • Vendor trash is almost everywhere in Dishonored, but for simplicity's sake it is instantly converted to money the moment you grab it, so you never have to explicitly sell it.
  • System Shock 2 and the BioShock have replicators and vending machines that, among ammo and useful items, also dispense small junk objects at very low prices. In the former, you can hack one of the replicators to get a tool that can turn these pieces of junk into nanites. In the latter, the junk is limited to snacks, alcohol and cigarettes with marginal use – respectively, they increase healthnote , health at the cost of EVE and EVE at the cost of health, all in very small amounts.

  • Kingdom of Loathing:
    • The game has an "autosell" function that lets you sell just about any item in your inventory for money. Two items in particular were almost entirely useful only for their autosell value: "Valuable trinkets"note  and "fat stacks of cash"note  (the latter are useless because the Global Currency is "meat").
    • Items like "fancy seashell necklaces" can be bought to enable one to convert non-exchangeable currencies into the Global Currency.
  • Ragnarok Online
    • Vendor Trash is the main source of income. Although some of those items can be used in certain quests, their main utility is being sold or exchanged for other items. The game mechanic is actually based on an early scene in the original manhwa, when Chaos chops a horn off of a Face Worm so that he'd have proof that he'd killed it when he returned to Alberta to collect the 5,000 zeny bounty on its head. In RO, a soldier in Izlude provides the justification as to why characters sell Vendor Trash to merchants and not to a bounty hunter's office by explaining that the kingdom passed a law in which merchants can act as bounty hunting offices, and are compensated by the kingdom for paying out rewards.
    • Ragnarok also lets you sink your Vendor Trash into millinery. Got a ton of rotten bandages from killing zombies? Why, 300 of those make a hat! Got trunks? Make Sakkats! It can become ridiculous when your Kafra inventory is full of Vendor Trash you just can't part with because only a few hundred more will make you another hat!
  • World of Warcraft goes as far as color-coding its Vendor Trash. If you see an item with its name in gray, you can rest assured its only purpose in the game is to be sold to vendors.
    • This was eventually lampshaded with the item "Goldenscale Vendorfish," a rarely caught fish which sells for an impressive amount of money for its item level.
    • Some so-called vendor trash can be sold to vendors for more than even legendary weapons, though these are fairly rare items contained within the daily fishing quest grab-bag. The Beautiful Glass Eye goes for 18 gold pieces, while the Ancient Coins go for 25!
    • For a brief period, the Darkmoon Faire allowed players to turn in certain gray quality items in exchange for tickets. However, developers soon realized that this threw the system and raised said items to white quality.
    • It's not uncommon for players to actually use some of those grey-colored vendor trash items when no other alternative exists. Most shoulder gear of remotely acceptable quality is few and far between under level 25, and for those underleveled players, a pair of rotting pauldrons or disheveled shoulderguards is better protection than nothing at all.
    • Of special note is the Shadowstrike/Thunderstrike polearm found in the then-high level raid Molten Core back in Classic. Instead of stats, it possessed a Chance on Hit proc and the ability to transform from one form to the other. Of the classes that could use polearms at the time - Warriors, Paladins, Druids, and Hunters - the weapon was comparatively too weak to be of use to the former two, and avoided by the latter two since Chance on Hit procs on melee weapons don't work for their preferred methods of attack. Because of this, it was generally considered worthless and granted the Fan Nickname "Vendorstrike", since this was all it was usually good for.
    • In Mists of Pandaria there are the so-called "Treasures of Pandaria". A number of these are low-quality items that may spawn in certain places; they grant experience points upon picking them up and usually sell for around one hundred gold, but are useless otherwise.
    • In addition, Mists of Pandaria simplified the vendor trash somewhat as well. Now, pretty much everything that drops it only has two Vendor Trash items they can drop (different specific items depending on the type of monster), one being very common and worth a couple silver each, and the other being considerably rarer and worth several gold apiece. Examples of the latter tend to include handy flavor text explaining why the vendor has a use for the item, even though the player doesn't.
  • Guild Wars:
    • There's an entire class of NPCs who trade weapons, armor, or other useful items for otherwise useless items. Some collectors offer explanations, but not all of them. And then there are merchants who buy virtually anything. This idea was taken a bit further with the introduction of Nicholas the Traveler, an NPC who wants different items weekly (or daily in Pre-Searing) in exchange for consumables. He nearly always asks for Vendor Trash. He, at least, gives a detailed explanation as to what use he has for such a bizarre item.
    • Guild Wars 2 has a subtle but nice reason for why vendor trash can be sold; every piece of trash has "Trophy" below its name, implying that when you sell something useless to an adventurer like yourself, you're giving it to a merchant to pawn off on someone as basically a dust collector or a conversations starter. On the other hand, the game admits to the nature of these items with an achievement track called "Trash Collector".
  • The net-based game Forum Warz has an entire item category of vendor trash called "Useless Junk". The value of the items ranges from the marble, which sells for only 1 unit of currency, to the nude Mary Magdalene, which sells for over 5000. To avoid quest items being mistaken for useless junk, they cannot be sold. Why is it necessary to make quest items unsellable? Because otherwise you couldn't tell the difference - many of the quest items look, from the descriptions, utterly pointless...
  • The MMORPG Tales of Pirates has Trade Items, which can only be used for buying in one port and selling it for more money in a different port.
  • Puzzle Pirates features Fruit (everything else is useful for, well, a trade, since tradeskills are literally half of the game).
  • RuneScape has a lot of vendor trash, such as goblin armour (too small for you to wear) and unenchanted jewelry. However, there are also things that are useful if you're on a certain quest and never again, such as beads (technically, goblin armour is also used in a quest, although even then you have to paint it first). Those things are useful for selling to people who are working on the quest that requires that item, or just selling to the shopkeeper. Some minigames even reward the player with Vendor Trash. When you get to a high enough level a very large portion of item drops are vendor trash. This is because by the time you are strong enough to easily fight a monster, nearly all of that monster's armor and weapon drops will be weaker than what you are capable of using at your current level, even the extremely rare ones, so you are better off selling most of the drops to lower leveled players. And in many cases the armor and weapons that are of a useful level will be dropped so rarely that trying to get them from that monster will take far too long, so it is better to just buy them.
    • After the mining and smithing rework in 2019, monsters no longer drop melee armor and weapons that players can make. Instead they now drop salvage items whose only use is converting them into coins with alchemy or disassembling them for invention parts or selling them to other players.
  • MapleStory has these in spades, with a very appropriate name of "etc items." While some etc items are needed for quests, there are many others that will never be used for anything but selling. Most are pretty standard but there are a few that are really bizarre like soiled rags, a fish's thoughts, werewolf toenails, and zombie teddy bears.
  • Tabula Rasa avoided the brunt of this trope by giving characters enormous amounts of backpack space and making truly useless items almost nonexistent (but rather valuable to compensate). Virtually all non-mission-critical items can, at the absolute least, be decomposed into their modular "stat bonuses" as well as the secondary resource needed to modify and install those modules, giving a distinct use to even the crappiest low-level gear in the game. These two aspects together led to the very common and rather comical sight of your character harboring several dozen fully-functional and loaded weapons (ranging up to chainguns and RPGs), two whole characters' worth of body armor in addition to their own, hundreds of grenades in all 53 flavors, and tens of thousands of rounds of spare ammunition for weapons the player cannot even equip. Any given low-level character could probably level a small town if they detonated the sheer volume of unstable materials they regularly lug around.
  • Most of the in game economy of EVE Online is based on the production, selling, buying, and transportation of vendor trash in the form of commodities other than the ships and upgrades that players can actually use. Though very little is actually useless, as almost everything in the game is useful to someone (for example, player-run space stations require certain resources that individual players will find useless).
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic includes a feature in which you can have your current companion to go and sell all the vendor trash in your inventory while you continue to play.
  • Battlestar Galactica Online is guilty.
  • Billy vs. SNAKEMAN has "Treasure Items", most of which were initially only good for their sale price - and they all had to be assessed from their "ash-covered" state before they could be sold (thankfully, even the lowest-value is always worth more than its assessment price). Some of these were initially useful for building Wasteland gear, and the rollout of PizzaWitch made a lot more of them usable for crafting, but Small Gems are still only resaleable.
  • In Dream of Mirror Online, if it wasn't used for a quest or for alchemy, it was most likely Vendor Trash; this was the main source of income as the money you got from finishing most quests was abysmal.
  • Gems in LEGO Universe are completely worthless to players, but they can be sold to vendors. Depending on the color of the gem, you can receive anywhere from a measly 10 coins to a grand 50,000 coins by selling these gems.
  • There is a gigantic variety of items you can loot in WildStar, and given their convenient Vacuum Loot feature which sucks up all the loot in an area, you can collect the strangest of things without realizing it. These could be looted jewelry and nicknacks from your enemies, scraps of their equipment, their body parts, and anyone will buy them.
  • Fallen London has a variation, as the game's economy is based around having a very large amount of different currencies that can be traded for each other at various rates. You can always sell one currency item for Echoes and pence and buy up another currency item with it, though this is at a loss - you can also exchange quantities of one currency in bulk for another, usually slightly increasing total value. That said, Rostygold, Nevercold Brass and Relics of the Fourth City are relatively useless/abundant enough to let you simply sell them off without a weight in your mind. That said, there is one particular situation in where the term is given a whole new meaning: Certain trades in Uncertified Scrap give you extremely rare and valuable items that are, nonetheless, rather useless in terms of actual storyline or storylet usage. Which leads to conversations between stars, velvet spun from the fur of a Master of the Bazaar (read: An eldritch being that runs the local Bazaar of the Bizarre), intel on where the princes of Hell are hiding and an entire intelligence network being sold for money because they were simply useless to you. That's Fallen London for you.
  • Final Fantasy XIV contains several of these items, all helpfully identified with the phrase "Exchangeable for gil" in their Flavor Text. The most obvious would be the Allagan <some-metal> Pieces, which are literally currency once used by the local Precursors. As an oblique measure against Real Money Trade, these items retain the original 99-per-slot Cap and were not affected when patch 4.2 increased the cap to 999 for everything else.
  • The Elder Scrolls Online has TWO types of vendor trash. The first is the standard kind dropped by various monsters, such as hides and ectoplasm. The second kind are various valuable, but useless, items stolen from containers and NPCs and sold to fences. These range from portable chamberpots and children's dolls to precious artifacts, but for some reason sell for more than any other type of item does.

    Real-Time Strategy 
  • Dead bodies of slain creatures can serve as this in Pikmin 2. When above ground they don't really count, since they're used to grow more Pikmin, but in underground areas you get money for dragging them back to the ship instead. Not as much as collecting treasure, but one can still make a sizeable chunk of money off of just bringing back any creatures they kill.
  • Warcraft III:
    • As item drops are only randomized in skirmish games, items meant only to be sold are replaced by coins and lumber pickups.
    • In skirmish games, some items can become this, especially if they replicate a spell your faction already has or your hero can cast better. It's better to sell them and get money than leave them lying around where the enemy can take them.

  • In Alpha Man, many items are vendor trash, such as the slinky, the PortaPotty, the cyclotron, and the prosthetic leg. Other items appear to be vendor trash, only to have useful purposes, like the Home Movie Projector that puts creatures to sleep, the Massage Unit that relieves fatigue, and the Bottle of Seltzer that is effective against fire-based creatures.
  • In ADOM there are several clearly useless items, like the Scroll of Cure Blindness (to use it you must be able to read it, spot the problem?) or the si. However, there is also a Potion of Uselessness which grants the player a random artifact if thrown on the Level 49 of the main dungeon. It can only be used for this. As in NetHack, shops can run out of money - however, they eventually renew.
  • Castle of the Winds has a junk store specifically for the player to sell broken or cursed items, as the other stores won't take them. At least in the case of cursed items, if the player hasn't already identified them (say, by Save Scumming to find out what they are), stores will buy as if they were ordinary goods — unless the player abuses this privilege, after which those stores refuse to take unidentified items.
  • Dwarf Fortress
    • Enemy equipment - you can't wear most of the clothing that other races drop, seeing how it's too big or narrow for your dwarves. You can use most of the weapons, but they're usually poor-quality compared to what you can make locally or buy. However, depending on the material that it's made out of, traders will sometimes give you quite a bit of money for it. Metal items can also be melted down, and the junk left behind on a battlefield acquired the Fan Nickname of "Goblinite, the fourth iron ore". As a result, goblin invaders were nerfed to wear leather armor, which had the perverse effect of making defending the fortress harder on metal-poor maps despite the weaker enemy armor.
    • In Adventure Mode, you can sell anything to most merchants, but different currencies are not interchangeable between different towns, so selling a bunch of stuff usually just nets you money with very limited use. But the money can still be thrown for massive damage.
    • There's also stuff you can create that exists largely to be sold to merchants: Jewellery, toys, drinking vessels etc. (As of the most recent content patch, a lot of things which used to be this trope now serve a purpose, but in very small quantities relative to what your workshops will churn out.) Turning a few hundred of those useless quartzite rocks lying around into A Present From Boatmurdered +quartzite mugs+ can be very profitable. It does, however, become odd when vendor-trash material like golden salve or barrels of blood get brought to your fortress by vendors, especially if you then spend hundreds of dwarfbucks on useless barrels of golden salve without knowing what it's for.
  • Dungeon Crawl makes sure shops don't buy anything, specifically to avert this trope; the author thinks lugging mountains of vendor trash back to the shops just isn't a fun game mechanic. The sole exception is for followers of the god Nemelex Xobeh, who accepts just about anything as a sacrifice, so in a way you're "selling" items for piety. Besides, apart from cursed and/or damaged equipment and a few malevolent pieces of jewelry, there actually isn't anything truly useless — your lvl 20 Troll Monk might not need that book of lvl 1 completely useless spells, or that potion of poison, or that +2 dagger — but for some other type of character those things might be very valuable.
  • In the spaceship flying/combat game FTL: Faster Than Light, defeating most enemy ships only gives you money and basic resources, but occasionally defeating an enemy or completing a quest can give you useful equipment like an extra weapon, remote drone or augment. Most of these are useful for expanding or slotting into your weapons loadout, but particularly resource-intensive or underpowered weapons (like the Burst Laser III and Breach Missile, which require 4 and 3 weapons bars respectively out of a potential maximum of 8, have very slow charge times, and only do moderate damage) will often be sold to stores instead of actually equipped. The same goes for drones if you don't have a drone system to actually use them with, or the Repair Arm augment which takes a percentage of your money to automatically heal you. Stores only pay half-sell-price for equipment, but you can still get quite a bit of money from selling 2 otherwise useless/impractical pieces of equipment.
  • NetHack restricts things by limiting the amount of cash each storekeeper actually has to buy your junk. Once that's depleted, the value of the trash is vastly depleted and you can only get store credit. General Stores are the friends here, where you can sell all the random encounter crud - including the elf armor, the elf weapon, the elf shield and the elf corpse. (Well, it beats eating it - sometimes...) The best type of vendor trash is gems - but you have to have magically identified which are valuable and which are just glass, otherwise the shopkeepers buy them priced as glass, and sell them priced as emeralds, amethysts, dilithium crystals or whatever...
  • Moria had shopkeepers that would purchase unidentified items. In theory, you could stockpile 99 potions of Apple Juice, Slime Mold Juice and Water to get maximum profit (since their unidentified form is always the same from game to game.) However, trying to sell known vendor trash will offend the shopkeeper. The follow-up Angband makes it impossible to sell known trash.
  • In the Thief games, anything you pick up and keep that isn't a weapon or used to solve a puzzle is this. In the first two games, the trash is automatically sold for you between missions. In the third, you have to track down fences to sell the loot.
  • The shopkeeper of Dungeons of Dredmor, Brax, will buy anything off you (even the sidequest-completion items, before it was fixed in a patch), but there is nothing in the game that is, by definition, Vendor Trash: it's either equipment, a consumable, or a crafting ingredient. However, if you don't have the relevant craft (Blacksmithing, Alchemy, or Tinkering) or skill set (e.g., booze, etc. when you've got no mana-using abilities or food when you're a Vampire), many items are functionally useless to you, making them effectively Vendor Trash (or Horadric Lutefisk Cube Trash). The expansion pack Conquest of the Wizardlands adds a new item, Horse Armour, which is a Shout-Out to The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. It would grant the wearer 20 piercing resistance and 20 armour absorption, except it can't be equipped, since you do not have a horse or a slot for horse armour. Selling it to Brax does give the player a good amount of gold, at least.
  • In Elona, killed monsters will sometimes drop a bone, skin, heart or bottle of blood. The only use for these is selling to merchant. However, shopkeepers have limited gold, which prevents you from abusing this too much.
  • One Way Heroics has some slain monsters drop chipped or whole gemstones, and sometimes you'll even find Ancient Gemstones, all of which are only good for selling for money although they're thankfully weightless. They're kind of flammable though, so beware of firebreathing monsters.
  • Iter Vehemens Ad Necem mixes this with Elemental Crafting: items made out of gold, silver, etc. are very impractical to use, but shopkeepers will buy them for a considerable price. Gemstones also count, but weapons/armor made of them are actually quite useful to have.
    • In a more straight example, there's timepieces and grandfather clocks. There's also cheap and expensive copies of the left nut of Petrus: the expensive variety sells for a good chunk of gold but is useless otherwise.

    Role Playing Game 
  • In Gothic, you can collect certain items from dead animals like claws, fangs, talons, and skins after you learn the appropriate hunting skill. These items have no gameplay use other then sale to vendors.
  • Pokémon
    • Items as Nuggets, Pearls, Stardust, and Tiny Mushrooms. But even then, some games give some of them specific uses:
      • In FireRed and LeafGreen, Mushrooms are used in Sevii by the Mushroom Maniac Move Re-Tutor.
      • You can give Star Pieces to the guy at Fuego Ironworks in exchange for shards, which are used for getting TMs on Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, or use them to pay various move tutors on Platinum.
    • The Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series has the "Gold Ribbons" and the "Lost Loot".
    • Once you get to the Department Store in each game, you can purchase "Lemonade" from the rooftop vending machines, which are equally effective as Super Potions, but cost only a fraction of the price, effectively making Super Potions into this. The only disadvantage is that you have to purchase Lemonades one at a time.
    • Ethers are outclassed by Leppa Berries, which have the effect but activate automatically when held by a Pokemon; the player can get a sustainable supply of them with careful gardening. Neither of these two can be purchased from shops, but Ethers fetch a surprisingly high price in resale.
    • Pokémon Black and White
      • To make up for the lack of trainer rematches, there are three collectors that will buy certain regular items for more than what you'd usually get and will also give you tremendous amounts of money for rare items you can't sell to anyone else (some of which you only get one of). Star Pieces can also be traded to a guy in Anville Town for PP Ups (but he's only there on weekends).
      • The billionaire in Undella Town will pay you a LOT of money for the Relics you find in the Abyssal Ruins, which you really can't do anything else with.
    • Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 adds another item maniac who collects Mulch (items used in berry growing in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl and Pokémon X and Y, but rendered useless in Pokémon Black and White.) The amount of items that are counted as vendor trash is almost absurd. With Disc One Nukes such as Join Avenue and Pokéstar Studios, you'll have more than enough money than you'll know what to do with.
    • Pokémon Sword and Shield's Isle of Armor expansion introduces the Cram-o-Matic, an Item Crafting device which converts any 4 items into another, including otherwise inaccessible and sought-after items such as PP Ups. If you know the right recipes, you can convert your Vendor Trash into hundreds of these items.
  • The Gold Bars and Dried Bouquets in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door come close, although they did have very marginal other uses. Both could be cooked, which was necessary for 100% Completion, although it wouldn't really make anything worthwhile. Also, the Dried Bouquet restored 1 FP and the Gold Bars were a way to "get around" the 999 coin limit.
  • Useless monsters in Puzzle & Dragons can be sold for a bit of Coins. In addition, there are Predras, which come in Baby, (100 Monster Points) Elemental, (500 Monster Points) and Grand (10,000 Monster Points) flavors. The Six Year TAMADRA could count, too, as while it looks flashy, it's just a regular TAMADRA otherwise, but it can be sold for fifty thousand Monster Points.
  • Crash Fever has units from the Hatcher that are permanently stuck at a four or five star form (at least, in Global, such as Quetzalcoatl.) While these units will clog up your 10x rolls with worthless filler with no abilities and barely anything in the way of stats and techniques, they can be sold for a load of Ghosts, which is the only way to get them. There are also Golden Ducks, which have even worse stats than the hatcher units, but can be sold for a hefty amount of Bits (the game’s common currency).
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • Daggerfall has a number of "Misc Items" with no use beyond selling. These range from "light" items such as candles, lanterns, torches to holy tomes, holy daggers, and other objects don't appear to have any value other than for selling.
    • Morrowind adds hundreds of more items with uses (such as "light" items which can now be held in the off-hand to illuminate dark areas, as well as items such as scrap metal, chunks of ore, and the like which are now alchemical ingredients) but also includes plenty of vendor trash as well. Dinnerware, silverware, empty bottles, musical instruments, etc. cannot be used in any way beyond as decorations, though all are at least worth 1 gold if sold to a merchant.
    • In Oblivion, the world is filled with objects that you can pick up, add to your inventory and sell. Most of them have no in-game function except as props and vendor trash. However, some items that appear to be vendor trash can actually start a quest.
    • Skyrim continues the trend of previous games, while also adding in a Lampshade of it in merchant dialogue (see the page quote).
      • Skyrim also features vendor trash that is (probably unintentionally) more trashy than usual: a throwaway clothing item, "Gloves," which is valued at only 1 coin. Probably because it's two left gloves.note 
  • In the game Shining Force CD, several pieces of Mithril that are found in Book 3 are like this.
  • In Mount & Blade, enemy drops are useful early on for equipping your character and NPCs; however once you have everybody decked out in the nicest armor drops, enemy drops essentially become Vendor Trash, as do the enemies themselves if you manage to take any prisoners. Prisoners can be recruited to your army, but the chances of that happening are low; the point is moot if your army is at capacity anyway. To sell them, you have to go from town to town until you can find a ransom broker, meanwhile with the prisoners dipping into your food supply. Captured lords and kings can be the most annoying to have to drag around, since the usual ransom brokers won't purchase them from you; you just have to wait until someone makes you an offer for them. There are also items that you can purchase from vendors for the sole purpose of reselling them elsewhere for a profit, some of which have absolutely no function apart from their inherent money-making value.
  • The "Pretty Stone" in the first Kingdom Hearts game. Likewise, the "Mystery Mold" that Randomly Drops from the randomly appearing Black Fungus; which is sold for 9999 cash! Sora apparently isn't curious just what merchants do with magic mushrooms formed from the darkness. Especially when the merchants are kids. And nephews to Donald, no less.
  • Shin Megami Tensei/Persona:
    • In the Digital Devil Saga duology, the first game has Cells (which we never find out what they look like) while the second has... plain old flowers. The Cells are research probes sent out by the Karma Society while the second game is set in a Death World, making plants extremely rare.
    • In Raidou Kuzunoha vs. The Soulless Army, Raidou can acquire "artifacts", such as old coins and pottery, that are only useful when you sell them to Konnou-Ya, the crotchety old owner of the store that shares his name.
    • In Persona 3, coins you get by killing the game's Metal Slime are usually worth a lot of money, and some of the items dropped by bosses are only there for you to sell.
    • In Persona 4, your first visit to the only equipment shop has the owner tell you explicitly that items dropped by enemies are useless to you and should be sold to him. A nice touch for those worried about selling anything for fear of missing something later on. As an additional reason to do so, new weapons and armor become buyable if you sell certain amounts of stuff to the shop.
    • Persona 5: Most of the treasure you steal from the various Palaces, include the main Treasure each of your heists are targeting, can only be sold at the weapon shop for cash. They have no other uses and stay in a separate tab from equipment and other usable items.
    • Shin Megami Tensei IV and Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse:
      • Relics, AKA everyday items from before the game's events, are the main source of Macca in this game. The game even sells them automatically as soon as you enter a shop. The reason for their value depends on where you sell them: in the medieval kingdom of Mikado, they are valued for being modern-day items, while in Tokyo they are pre-apocalyptic conveniences.
  • Breath of Fire III had Antiquities that could be sold to any store for money, or to a specific store for more money. However, one of them (the Flower Jewel) is needed to get a certain master to help your party, so don't sell it.
  • Planet Alcatraz features a staggering number of clothing items that gives no stat bonus whatsoever (beggar clothing, tank tops, skirts, miniskirts, etc), as well as gerbil skins, mushrooms, etc that are only good for selling to merchants.
  • The three statues in Skies of Arcadia were originally used for a sidequest, but in the remake, Skies of Arcadia Legends, this quest was taken out, and the statues became Vendor Trash. The game also featured plenty of straight examples — Crystal Balls, Gold Bullion, and the Zivlin Bane treasures, for starters. Daccat's Coin also probably counts, although only one vendor in the game was interested in it. The Discoveries are a somewhat less orthodox usage.
  • Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars
    • The Goodie Bag is an item that gives you one coin when used, and never runs out. This can be used to create unlimited wealth (very, very slowly), but there are faster ways to make unlimited money (like using the combat turns you would be using for the Goodie Bag to, y'know, fight enemies that drop money), so it's often better to sell it for a quick influx of 555 coins instead.
    • The Pure Water item, which is frequently won from beating undead enemies. The Pure Water item only has one purpose, which is to instantly defeat undead monsters. They also have a hefty resale value of 75 coins a piece, making Pure Water a good way to rack up some coins.
  • Shadow Madness, a Playstation RPG, had entire barrels of useless geegaws (farming tools, toys, etc.) that would get you loads of money if sold to specific shops. The game gives you no clue about this.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy II is the first game in the series to introduce Random Drops. Imperial magicians and certain other enemies frequently drop spell tomes, with the ones that aren't available from shops often netting thousands of gil more than you'd receive from fighting monsters.
    • Selling Vendor Trash is your main source of income in Final Fantasy XII. It should be noted that a lot of items are available earlier, cheaper, and/or exclusively if you sell a certain quota of Vendor Trash. Info in the bestiary frequently describes which items a monster drops and what they're used for, making the fact that they sell for decent money more plausible. And there's also a direct correlation between what you sell and what stuff you can buy from the Bazaar.
    • Final Fantasy XIII has loot you could either use for synthesis or selling. The real Vendor Trash are items that are specifically described as having a high sale value, as they provide very little benefit for synthesis anyway.
    • Most of the equipment obtained in Dissidia Final Fantasy: Opera Omnia's. The gachapon system revolves around netting high-level custom equipment for the game's characters. Most pulls result in a large amount of low-level generic equipment that is useful only for selling off or consuming in upgrades to the high-level gear.
  • In Baten Kaitos you take pictures of monsters and sell them for money. It's the only way to make cash as the Magnuses/Magni (magic cards holding the essence of something) dropped by enemies or found elsewhere sell for a pittance. There are some exceptions like the Chump Change that eventually change to Vintage Coints and then to Styx Passage Coins that can be sold for pretty penny or the Consolation Pay that sells for 30000. The series also features inversions of Vendor Trash: a certain magnus (Slight Debt) changes over time to the Debt with Interest, to the Snowballing Debt and finally the Debt Hell. Attempting to sell the Debt Hell will remove 5000 money from your possession.
  • Mother:
    • Chickens, rulers, and protractors in EarthBound. Luckily the game also has a "For Sale" sign which causes random people to wander up to you and buy your things. There's also the semi-rare Meteotite, which is dropped by some enemies and (as the description states) doesn't do anything but can be sold for a high price. And then there's the Insignificant Item...though it actually has a use.
    • The Meteotite appears in the sequel, Mother 3, with the same purpose. Also, there are items such as Nuts (which heal 5 HP when eaten, but can be traded for much better recovery items until chapter 4) and Dolphin Ossicles (which have no purpose other than being sold).
  • Star Ocean: The Second Story:
    • Half the stuff you make using Item Crafting can be considered Vendor Trash. Many items have little or no use and there are over a thousand of them.
    • There is an example of the rarer "appreciating value" Vendor Trash, in which it sells (at an incredible price) a bottle of what was translated to "Seltzer". It rapidly increases in value based on the number of squares you've moved since the beginning of the game. This appreciation happens whether or not you own the item, meaning if you want to buy it you'll have to progress far enough that your ability to make money outstrips the time you've spent playing. You can also create it using ultra-rare cooking ingredients.
    • Inverted with the item Bounced Cheque. In order to get rid of it, you had to pay a shopkeeper to take it off you.
  • The Sega Saturn RPG Albert Odyssey: Legend of Eldean (based on the Super Famicom series) had several "mundane" items much like NAMCO RPG Great Greed had — forks and makeup and the like — which differed from the other fantasy setting items — swords and armors and the like.
  • You could collect plenty of vendor trash in Betrayal at Krondor, and some in its lackluster sequel, Return to Krondor. Return was perhaps notable for the fact that gems weren't vendor trash, because the game actually assigned a weight value to money. Vendors would automatically convert your coinage into lighter-weight gems. The large mid-game section where you're free to explore the coastal wilderness near Krondor without any easily-accessible vendors could easily lead to serious weight problems just from all the cash you weren't able to convert to gems (not to mention all the potion-making crap both your wizards were likely carrying around).
  • The Baldur's Gate series has a lot of these sorts of items—mostly non-magical jewelry and gems. However, occasionally, an NPC will have a use for a particular kind of Vendor Trash... and all the people who gleefully sold high-end Vendor Trash—particularly emeralds, star sapphires, rogue stones, diamonds, and other gem types—for large piles of money in Baldur's Gate II were disappointed when they go to Throne of Bhaal and found that there was a real use for them...
  • Dragon Age: Origins, its spiritual successor, does something similar. Word of advice, you may not want to sell off your unused gems, crafting supplies, and runes, as they can be used to give you an advantage in the final battle. But during your quest you'll also find things like blank vellum, silk carpets, and silver chalices, none of which serve any purpose except for this trope.
  • Dragon Age II reverses it and automatically sorts all unusable loot into the "Junk Items" category, which can be emptied at any shop with a single click on "Sell all junk" button. You can also move useless armor and weapons to Junk to greatly simplify loot selling. Lampshaded in that the icon for the Junk Items category is a trash can.
  • Dragon Age: Inquisition settles halfway between its two predecessors - the "junk" items still get sorted into a separate category, but so do items that are actually important, including research materials that can be turned in for damage bonuses against various enemies and in one level, items that you need to complete a sidequest. After you get the hang of the weapons and armor crafting (which can be done less than a third of the way through the game), most of the non-unique weapons fall into this.
  • Might and Magic RPG games had gems of different colours and value. They did not have any use except for selling them. And in M&M VIII there were 'shop tours': you could buy or sell Tobersk fruit, Tobersk pulp or Tobersk Brandy from various merchants, making some profit. This was too tedious, though, to earn gold that way.
  • In Vandal Hearts 2, the bullion (of gold), ingot, and the R (rare) metal serves practically this purpose. They're great to sell off, but no use whatsoever except to add weight. Even worse, there are items that doesn't even sell well, and just adds weight. Of course, there's a niche weapon with a niche skill that relies on your overall weight to damage enemies. You don't discover it until later in the game though, which means, most usually, you have sold those said items...
  • In the .hack// games, end-of-dungeon chests often contain one to three vendor trash items that are very valuable for trading with "other players."
  • Monster Hunter:
    • While on missions you can find such rare and valuable items as shiny shells, rare bugs, monster guts, fruit, mushrooms that have sat in the stomachs of giant bugs, and living fish made out of gold (no really, read the Flavor Text). With a few exceptions, these items serve absolutely no purpose but for cash, and are sold off automatically when the mission ends. These are usually referred to as Account Items. A surprising number of them are described as delicacies. The general rule of thumb is: If the Flavor Text describes the item as highly valuable and especially if it's followed up by "...but of no use to a Hunter", you can safely sell it without compromising an opportunity for new equipment, assuming the game doesn't sell it for you.
    • Monster Hunter: World makes it simpler, just labeling these with "(Trade-In Item)" in yellow text and even giving an option to just sell all such items en masse. The player can also farm them intentionally by using the Bandit Mantle, a piece of equipment that makes monsters occasionally drop trade-in items when attacked. Then there's Kulve Taroth, a monster that is literally covered in gold which can be broken off and collected; appropriately enough, you fight it in a location called the Caverns of El Dorado.
  • This is your only source of money in The World Ends with You, and the Vendor Trash is about as obvious as it gets— pins called "[number] Yen", with a design featuring that number, and no other purpose.
  • In Etrian Odyssey Vendor Trash is your only source of income. It's also used to improve the shop's inventory: sell the required materials, and new items go on sale.
  • Items in Wasteland 2 have a "junk" category, whose sole purpose is to be converted in cash.
  • Fallout
    • When you're fighting human (or humanoid, anyway) opponents, the series most definitely falls into this trope, since you can usually scavenge a weapon, a piece of armor, and a trinket or two from hostiles, and they're usually things you either don't need, or already have (or have something better,) leading to huge mounds of Vendor Trash after a fight. An interesting part of the Fallout game economy is that actual cash is relatively limited. It is often easier to trade for vendor trash to make up for what the NPC merchants lack in money. It gives the game's barter system a more realistic feel (in a post-apocalyptic sort of way), as you'll end up with transactions that go along the lines of "four scavenged shot guns for all of your cash, several bottles of hooch, and some ammo".
    • Fallout 3 reinforces this trope with a vengeance, supplying vast amounts of useless to marginally useful clutter around the environment and in containers. You only get one ally to load up with unreadable books and unsmokeable cigarettes, but fortunately stacks of Pre-War Money have zero encumbrance. Most of the junk can be used as ammunition for the Rock-It Launcher.
    Kilian Experience: When asked to describe Fallout 3, Bethesda said it was a game where you sneak into strangers' houses and steal stuff you can't actually use. I wanted to know if there was more to it than that, and... no. No, there is not.
    • Fallout: New Vegas describes such items handily as "vendor trash." Some items are bound to personalities and take offense at the player picking up his/her trash.
    • The one saving grace to all that crap comes in the form of the custom weaponry, wherein fairly decent weapons can be fabricated from things that are literally lying around everywhere. One of these custom weapons is the Rock-It Launcher, an, err, unusual weapon that uses clutter as ammunition.
    • Oddly, as many GameMods lampshade, some of the vendor trash get turned into repair items for weapons and armor, which, given pretty much nearly all weapons and armor have been scavenged from the pre war world for use in the post apocalyptic one, maintenance of these items often becomes a constant personal task, and hence many mods make some of the obviously useful (for repairs) trash like "Wonderglue" and "Scrap Metal" usable for item repair because it makes logical sense.
    • Fallout 4 finally makes almost all of the the bottles and plates and sticks and toenail clippings scattered around the wasteland useful, for crafting things.
      • It also turns actual useful items into this; in its predecessors, items could be literally worthless when you finally trekked to a vendor to unload, thus forcing you to learn which items were worth collecting (cigarettes, for example, had a good value-to-weight ratio). In 4, possibly as a consequence of the designated junk vendors who sell items to use for crafting, the game assigns a value of at least one bottlecap (the in-game currency) to every single item. .38 ammo is only used for pipe guns, and since you find a superior 10mm pistol before you've even left the vault, chances are you'll stack up thousands of .38 bullets without even realising from fighting lower level raiders who continually use pipe guns throughout the world, even after you've long since moved onto laser guns and missile launchers. Every one of those bullets is worth at least a cap, and unless you're playing on survival mode, ammo has no weight. Consequently, the "Fortune Finder" perk (which increases the amount of money you find in containers) isn't as useful as "Scrounger" (which increases the amount of ammo you find), because you can sell the rounds you don't need and keep the ones you do.
  • Mass Effect sees fit to dump upon the player piles of assault rifles, shotguns, pistols, and sniper rifles, not to mention armor and upgrades for all the above. Most of it is actually sub-par equipment, and a quick check of the weapon or armor's manufacturer by a reasonably experienced player can tell you off the bat which ones are worth keeping before you even check the stats.
  • Knights of the Old Republic is equally bad, especially with stims. The bonuses they give don't stack, and are only mildly useful once you've got access to Force abilities. Ditto with medpacks, standard blasters, vibroblades, and such. The second game is a lot stupider about it than the first, leading you to have 5-6 copies of an allegedly "one of a kind" blaster.
  • Planescape: Torment has a lot of vendor trash items, mostly non-magical rings and bracelets, as well as weak weapons dropped off of opponents that you have long since outgrown, that seem to only exist to be sold to the vendors. However, while most plot items are unsellable, a couple are not and it gets very annoying to suddenly need a hammer and prybar but nobody seems to sell them. Luckily, vendors remember what items you sold them and will sell them back, assuming you can remember who you sold them to and that they're in an area you can still return to.
  • Mega Man Battle Network puts an interesting twist on this. The battlechips you start off with, as well as many of the chips you earn early in the game, quickly become useless, filling up your pack with piles of crap chips, and you can't sell ANYTHING. However, you can plunk useless or unwanted chips into Chip Traders, which cough up (hopefully) better chips. Some players actually BUY said chips just to go and pop them back into the machine again.
  • TaskMaker and its sequel, The Tomb of the TaskMaker, have several of these, including "Poison" which does bupkis; "old empty chest" which contains nothing; and other objects which can't be used, and have to be sold or discarded.
  • Brain Lord has things like Gold Coins and Silver Bullion, which have no use other than to take up space and be sold. Fortunately, they sell fairly well and you get a rather large inventory, but money isn't exactly hard to come by in the first place.
  • If you play the Memory game in Dragon Warrior 7 for Playstation for any length of time, you will amass a gigantic collection of dung, which gives you a measly 1 gold at the shop and serves no purpose other than attracting enemies (which you really don't need help with).
  • Neverwinter Nights:
    • Certain types of creature always drop a specific body part; fire beetles, for instance, drop fire beetle bellies. Shrubs and piles of rock typically yield fenberries and quartz crystals (though the piles of rock can hide more valuable gems). All of these sell for one gold apiece. But just when you've learned to recognize Vendor Trash in Chapter 1, Chapter 2 changes the rules... Now, there's one vendor who won't deal with you until you give her an item of Vendor Trash (an 'arcane reagent') — every single time you deal with her — and you can also find out how to use some of them in Item Crafting. But you still collect so many of them that they still by and large count as trash. At the same time, certain rare items from the first chapter, worth holding on to for their use in that chapter's Item Crafting, now themselves become Vendor Trash, showing up everywhere. (But fire beetle bellies remain trash.)
    • Books. You can ransack the Pamphlet Shelf for the same dozen or so books the world over. (And the occasional magic scroll.) Once you've read the page of setting-enhancing text once, they become pure Vendor Trash.
    • Gems exist solely to keep money in reserve so that when you die you don't lose too much dough. Admittedly, selling gems for money makes sense, but apart from diamonds (which are used in item crafting) they're rarely worth more than 100gp, which is a pitifully small amount of money when you get up to level 10.
  • This is the quickest means of getting money in Fossil Fighters. You find "Jewel Rocks" over the world, and clean the rocks to sell the jewels inside. However, it ends up being somewhat "normal" in that, in order to claim a Jewel Rock, you must generally win a battle first.
  • One of the most basic ways of making money in Albion. Some predators are hunted for parts that are used for various purposes (like decoration or as an ingredient for medicine). So whenever you're running low on cash, go hunting, pick up a few dozen of these and sell them. Valuables, like gems, also count, except for (non magical) jewelry, which can be equipped for extra protection.
  • Lampshaded and ultimately subverted in The Bard's Tale; the Bard finds several useless things in the chests and barrels he rummages through, but instead of being lugged around with him, they're automatically converted into silver to line his pockets.
  • The 7th Saga has various gems. Their advantage is that you don't lose them if you get defeated in battle (unlike gold). And yes, you will die in battle.
  • Darkstone has a number of items collectible from the local dungeons which serve absolutely no point to the player. These include a number of weapons and jewelry pieces which, if wielded/worn by the player character, will actually harm them. Their only purpose is to be sold for extra gold.
  • Panzer Dragoon Saga has a lot of Ancient Age things for Edge to find, or even more... mundane things. Like Coolia dung.
  • Lunar:
    • In Lunar: Dragon Song, you have the option of getting experience or vendor trash from killed enemies. Said trash can either be sold directly or used in the delivery miniquests that ask you to give an NPC 20 Bear Asses.
    • Lunar: The Silver Star had tons of useless items just waiting to be sold in the original Sega CD version. The remakes cut almost all such items out.
  • Most equipment that you found in Arcana were worth equipping your characters with, except for the Golden Sword and the Rococo Armor. The sword was made of gold and the armor was made of precious metals studded with gems, so they didn't raise your stats much, but they could be sold for a high price at the equipment shops.
  • Arcanum: Of Steamworks & Magick Obscura has gems, weak enemy weapons, and a wide variety of items that are only useful for certain builds.
  • In Path of Exile, the vendors themselves give you trash. You see, the game works on the barter system and there is no currency. So you can sell items for scraps that eventually combine into something relatively useful like an identify scroll.
  • Spiderweb Software's Avadon goes so far as to have an additional bottomless pit of a bag that's shared between all of your party members (in addition to their individual bags) which is meant solely for vendor trash. There are some things (such as dead limbs) that shopkeepers just won't buy.
  • Pandora's Tower features books as pure vendor trash. Picking them up copies their contents to the archive, and then they're so useless Mavda will take them off your hands without even asking for confirmation. She'll also buy Beast Flesh from you in bulk to give your excess some value instead of letting it rot, proving that being a minor Plot Coupon and Vendor Trash aren't mutually exclusive categories.
  • At the end of chapter 3 of Dragon Quest IV, Torneko opens his own shop, and can put up any item in his inventory for sale. At higher prices than what it would be sold for in other stores. Despite this, his wife (apparently a spectacularly good saleswoman) always manages to sell it all. Even the most worthless items dropped by monsters apply in this regard as well. Needless to say, you can rack up obscene amounts of money if you're willing to grind for a while in this chapter. Too bad money doesn't carry over from chapter to chapter (though if you use it to purchase expensive items, those do carry over).
  • Xenoblade does this instead of the Money Spider thing. Every enemy, whether Monster or Mechon, will drop either Weapons/Items, or various pieces of its body. Some are used for sidequests, but the majority of them exist only to be sold.
    • The sequel had a slightly unconventional example in the form of Collectibles (spawned by collection points) and Treasure (acquired from salvaging). These are items that can be sold on their own, but they're often significantly more valuable when they're sold in collections (particularly the Treasures). There's an implication that the items sold in batches will be used to reconstruct lost technology, or simply form artistic objects with cultural and historical significance.
  • Dark Sun games generally have either useful items, or junk with "0 cp" price tag that nobody will buy. But in Shattered Lands there is one trader in Gedron, who buys and sells literal trash (broken pots, mostly) at huge prices. Unfortunately, he gets better when you save his village from evil wizard.
  • Krater has sellable items that include pinecones, dog hairs and very small rocks.
  • Cells in Digital Devil Saga. Interestingly, you're actually told why they're valuable (the Karma Temple wants the data contained within them), and selling enough of specific types will unlock new items for sale.
  • In Professor Layton's London Life, the adorable RPG that comes bundled with some versions of Professor Layton and the Last Specter, pretty much everything you can pick up is vendor trash. Caught fish, picked flowers, you name it - Bruno will buy literally anything you want to sell him, except for those items necessary for the completion of the main plot.
  • Every Geneforge game ever has had somebody who was looking for otherwise-useless Shaper equipment, Shaper records or iron bars. The amount of inventory weight they take up vs. the minuscule amount of money and XP you get for retrieving them means it's really only worth it very early on.
  • Evil Islands: Some enemies drop this instead of money, materials or items. At least each type is given a short description which explains why it is sellable and what the buyers would do with it. Rat tails, for example, apparently make for a decent beer snack, when salted.
  • In Xenogears, there are many items (Gold Nugget, Eyeball, Fang, Scales) whose only purpose is to be sold.
  • In Robopon, there's Crysty, a Robopon found within the Shielder Tower in Apollo Fortress. It's only found during the evenings, but when it's out, it's surprisingly easy to come by. Its body is made of solid crystal, and while most Robopon sell for about 50-100 G per level, Crysty sells for 250 G a level. The ones you find are between levels 23-27, meaning they go for around 6000 G a pop.
  • In South Park: The Stick of Truth this is taken to an absolute literal sense, since the game is littered with garbage that serves no other purpose than to be sold to vendors. Ceramic shards, broken bulbs, pieces of plastic, used syringes, cardboard tubes, pubes, goo, splinters, tap shoes, etc are only a few of the list of ridiculously useless garbage that you can pick up to sell.
  • Monster Racers contains bronze, silver, and gold ingots. In fact, you're more likely to receive them as prizes and in treasure chests than you are actual money! That's probably because it's set in our world, and attempts to avert Global Currency. Of course, that still leaves the question of why the world is full of random pieces of metal just lying around...
  • Opoona has several. Gems, which can sometimes be found when doing the cleaning side-missions, can be sold as-is to a shop, or to a specific NPC, whose price for Gems changes day to day. Medals can be won from the cheapest Artihella stand, and can be sold back to shops to make back money from the stand. (There's even a hidden shopkeeper hiding in Artihella who's explicitly there to perform under-the-table medal trades.) Finally, some of the Rare Random Drops the monsters have are very expensive pieces of vendor trash, with the most expensive being the Raffelesia.
  • Shin Megami Tensei IV has several "Mystic Relics" that can be found and sold for Macca. There are also certain gold items that fetch prices for either 1000, 5000, or even a whopping 10000 Macca each.
  • In Faria, collecting jewels and selling them to the jeweler in Somusa is a good way to make money, since jewels, unlike useful items, can be sold for 90% of their regular purchase value.
  • Gems play this role in Darkest Dungeon. This adds a layer of complexity, since your space for items is limited and you may have to choose between gems and greater rewards when finishing the quest, or supplies and a better chance of actually finishing said quest. Additionally, having the Antiquarian class in your party gives a chance to find antiques whenever other items are found, which also serve only to be sold.
  • In Sinjid, you can find gold rings in the Dai'jin Mines. These offer negligible stat boosts compared to other trinkets, and can be sold for a good sum of money. The Flavor Text even lampshades this feature.
  • Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption has a lot of jewelry items, whose sole in-game function is to increase your Appearance stat when worn, which is of dubious utility. Their true purpose is to be sold for money. In the single-player game, any items not usable by vampires (such as Holy Statuettes and Holy Crosses) also qualify.
  • Quest for Glory V had this happen unintentionally. The designers were going to let players use bows and arrows for the first time in the series, but the game was rushed to market and thus the feature had to be cut. The player can still find arrows on defeated enemies, but since there's no way to ever obtain a bow they ended up becoming this trope.
  • Master of the Monster Lair: Animal enemies will often drop pelts, while humanoid enemies will sometimes drop rare coins.
  • The Suikoden series has urns and statues, which in theory have a purpose (to decorate your castle). However, most players just opt to sell them instead, since they have no practical benefits when displayed and most of the uncommon variants will earn a good bit of cash when sold.
    • Suikoden V has a useful way to mill them, though it requires some setup. Once you have Subala at your castle you can play the fishing mini-game, where you try to have the highest score at the end of a 3-minute time limit. In the course of catching fish, however, you'll also pull up plenty of Fish-themed equipment (Fish Fins, Head and Body - crap armor, but it sells for a decent price) and Urns, which you can identify and sell easily if you have Bastan at your castle. Most of the time you just get Failure urns worth a measly 30 Potch - less than the cost of an appraisal - but you'll also pretty consistently find at least one Karaya urn (worth 8000) and/or Celadon Urn (which sell for 20,000), so you'll make a tidy profit each time you go. Better yet, it costs nothing to enter and winning the contest will earn you 3,000 Potch or so - more than enough to identify any Urns you find. A great way to earn money for most of the midgame, and much less tedious than farming enemies with the game's annoying encounter rate.
  • Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter, being a roguelike-influenced game, has a lot of randomly-generated, unidentified items to find throughout. Most of these have mediocre or redundant effects, but nearly all sell for a good amount of cash (much moreso than the actual, designated vendor trash items, which eat up valuable inventory space and give so little money they aren't even worth bothering with), so it's worth keeping them around just to pawn them off for more resources at the next shop you reach.
  • The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel has monsters drop crystals called sepith rather than money. Sepith can be traded for money, or used directly to acquire items and upgrades in certain shops. It also has sepith mass, which is a cruder form of sepith that can only be exchanged for money. The main purpose of the latter is so that the player can acquire money without having to exchange normal sepith, which makes it easier to save up for things that can only be bought with sepith.
  • Divinity: Original Sin II: Some decorative items, like art and fancy dishes, have no in-game purpose but to be collected and sold by a Kleptomaniac Hero, which their in-game descriptions lampshade:
    Pitcher Flavor Text: Useless but pretty. Sell it.
  • Bug Fables has Dark Cherries, which are scattered all over the world buried underground, but cannot be eaten and exist mostly to be sold, with even the description encouraging the player to sell it with In-Universe justification that "collectors will buy them for a big price". However, it can also be used for cooking, making either a powerful bomb that can inflict random status effect, a powerful healing item that can restore the entire party's HP and TP, the best TP recovery item, and an item that can revive the entire party.
  • Tales of Phantasia: Tapestries, Ukiyo-e paintings, corals, tea cups, pieces of ebony wood, marble fragments, etc. pretty much only exists to be sold at shops for profit. The one exception are the ivory tusks that can be exchanged in a secret shop located on an island for Mahjong pieces, powerful battle items.
  • Sa Ga Frontier has the gold ingots. Those can be used in the infamous Takonomics glitch that involved the manipulation of the gold market via the shop at Koorong note  and then you will have all the money you'll ever need.
  • Octopath Traveler: A variety of trinkets and miscellaneous items can be found and stolen from NP Cs that are only good for selling for money. These junk items range from a "Silver-Filled Pouch" sold for 8,000g to a "Dirty Ball of Cloth" sold for 2g.

    Simulation Game 
  • Animal Crossing revolves entirely around Vendor Trash. You grow it on trees, you fish it out of the river, you pick it up off the beach, you catch it in your net, you dig a fossil out of the ground and have a paleontologist clean it up, and then you sell it all. Some of this stuff — like large fossils in good condition, or gold nuggets — is genuinely valuable in and of itself. However, Tom Nook and, in later games, the Nooklings have a policy of buying anything, and a lot of the stuff you'll sell their shop consist of seashells, clumps of weeds, rusty cans, old tires, old boots, random bugs...
  • Elite and games like it (Pirates, X, Escape Velocity, etc...) have this as the basis of the merchant and pirate occupations. Buy low, sell high. Typically, of all goods the only one you can use is fuel, if it isn't sold separately from normal goods, and there are contraband goods which are game-influencing in that being caught with it may get you fined or fired upon. The rest differs only in prices and places where prices are high/low—or, in the case of Escape Velocity's "jünk" resources, the few places where they can be bought and sold at all.
  • In Frontier versions of Elite it's the same, except there are a few more exclusions (game-relevant goods): two sorts of fuel on the list and useable Chaff, plus Rubbish (what normal goods may become if the ship is hit) and Radioactives (byproduct of military drives) that usually have a negative price (you can jettison them instead, but may get punished for littering in space).
  • Any Space Sims like Freelancer will have vendor trash in the form of commodities such as food, fuel, light weapons and even oxygen and water. It's only good for freighter builds, since for everyone else it is a bloody waste of time to loot a tradeship.
  • In X, sometimes, the guy you're shooting will abandon his ship, allowing you to claim it and sell it for probably more than the cargo was worth. Not to mention snatching up the jettisoned pilot and selling him into slavery.
  • In Gran Turismo 4, the first cup of the beginner mode grants the winner an old automobile that has very low power and front wheel drive, which can be sold for 8.000 credits, and it's easy to win the tournament when the player gets more experienced, and this can be done any number of times.
  • This is the general route to money in Magician's Quest: Mysterious Times. You can collect mushrooms, wild plants, and gemstones to sell them off. However, a large portion of Vendor Trash items can also be used in incantations for magical effects, and many of the gemstones and flowers make good gifts to give to people you want to be your friends.
  • Neopets has a massive number of items, many of which are essentially this. A lot of them don't even do anything; they aren't food, and your pet can't play with them, equip them, or read them, nor do they have any other clear function. At best, they have some situational use; for instance, an NPC may sometimes send you on a randomized Fetch Quest and ask for such an item. NPCs which ask for items have even sometimes been added partially to help combat growing garbage problems, as with Granny Hopbobbin and Atsumi, who host the Charity Corner event (during which players give away large quantities of items, which are often this kind). Even items which are useful in theory can become this in practice due to being far more common than they are helpful. All of them end up only being good for feeding to Skeiths and Grarrls (pets which can eat non-food items), selling/trading/giving away to NPCs or other players, or collecting. These things range from mysterious hovering cubes to coffee mugs, broken fishing poles, and even piles of excrement. Some of them were intended to have a function, only for said function to be removed or never added; many others were actually intended to be this.
  • In Nintendogs, your dogs can find things in the street. Except for toys and accessories, it's all pretty useless and only good for selling. Things that range from actual trash like empty juice bottles to fallen satellites and expensive vases.
  • Many Harvest Moon games traditionally have "foraged items" that respawn daily in the wilderness areas around town. Some of them can be eaten to restore health, and some can be used for cooking or crafting, but the majority of them are most useful for shipping. Especially early on, when you don't have many crops or animals to work with. Some Harvest Moon games also feature jewels and jewelry, which can sometimes be given as gifts but usually make much more when sold.
  • Stardew Valley has several literal trash items, mostly found through fishing or rummaging through people's trash cans. However, they can be turned into useful items through recycling machines.
  • Tomodachi Life has "treasures" that you can get as prizes from winning a Mii's game or beating the boss in the Tomodachi Quest mini game. Said treasures are completely random objects like basketballs, rocks, brooms, and so on. Miis that are in love with another Mii can be given a treasure to woo their potential partner, but beyond that, treasures only exist to be sold at the pawn shop. The rare treasures like gold bars and statue busts are worth a ton of money, which can help if you plan to send a Mii on a trip to outer space (costing $9999.99).

    Survival Horror 
  • Resident Evil 4 has various treasures scattered around the place whose only purpose is to sell to the merchant for money, which can then be used to buy and upgrade weapons. Several treasures can be combined to form new items which are worth more than the sum of their parts, too. Luckily, they take up no inventory room and are listed seperately from key items (which actually serve a purpose), so you know you won't later regret selling them, and the compound treasure items point out in their description that they seem to be parts of a whole.
    • It is also practical - and profitable - to sell off bullets for any guns you don't plan to use. Don't like the TMP? Its bullets are worth 20 pesetas each and come in boxes of 50. Don't like magnums or the Mine Thrower? Grab those boxes anyway because those bullets are worth 500 Ptas each. If the Handcannon's not your thing, keep it around just to get the ammo boxes to spawn, then sell the bullets for 600 each. Even Handgun ammo works - it's very common and worth 50 Ptas a pop. It all adds up quicker than you'd think.
  • In a rare non-RPG example, Dead Space has gold, ruby and diamond superconductors, which exist solely for the sake of being sold for a hefty price.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • Anything you can convince the GM to give a value can become vendor trash. As a wise gamer once wrote: "if all else fails, steal the doors straight out of the dungeon".
    • Enough parties got frustrated with the Tomb of Horrors' lack of treasure that they just looted the thick, enchanted adamantium doors instead. 3rd edition revised them to be enchanted steel.
    • This was lampshaded by no less than Gary Gygax himself in the 1st Edition Dungon Master's Guide. Gygax pointed out that things like flasks of oil, the weapons and armor belonging to human enemies, and pack animals could all be resold for decent prices, even if the enemies the players are looting didn't otherwise have a lot of cash on hand.
    • In 3rd and later editions, this was codified in the rules for random treasure: rather than cash or items that the party can use, it could also be awarded in the form of gemstones or works of art with equivalent value.
  • D&D's spiritual successor Pathfinder tries to reconstruct this trope by providing the notable features, resale value, and potential buyers of some truly bizarre Vendor Trash, right up to up-market embalming oils from a famous tomb and a legendary Gadgeteer Genius' room-sized vintage calliope (with further notes on the difficulty of getting it out in mint condition and the depreciation rate for wear and tear).

    Third Person Shooter 
  • Ride to Hell: Retribution has its enemies drop baggies of drugs in addition to the standard weapons and money. The drugs all have different names and prices, but they cannot be used or bought. In fact, there's only one NPC in the game you can sell the drugs to, and the prices don't fluctuate at all. Functionally, they're just a second cash pickup.
  • Warframe:
    • Of a sort. All equipment is leveled up by "mastery rating," which is the only way to increase the player's overall mastery rank. Less useful weapons are often dismissed as "mastery fodder," best mastered as fast as possible and then promptly sold.
    • Blueprints, oddly. While they are immensely valuable and people will grind for hours to find the right blueprints, after you build the item the first time, there is absolutely no need to build it again, so any duplicate blueprints found are quickly sold. Special mention goes to parts for the Oberon warframe (which drop from Eximus units you can find on any map) and the Gorgon gun (which drops from a mid-tier Grineer enemy).
    • Duplicate common and uncommon mods are typically sold en-masse. Duplicate rares can usually be sold to other players for much better prices.

    Turn Based Strategy 
  • In the SNES/PSX game Ogre Battle: The March of the Black Queen several items have in their descriptions that their only use was to be sold off for money; the player could also find that different shopkeepers would offer varying amounts (or trade goods) for certain items.
  • Fire Emblem:
    • Throughout the series, enemies or chests will drop gems or bullion that have no purpose except to be sold — except on a ranking run, where selling them kills your Funds score due to the exact definition of the requirement.
    • In Book II of Mystery of the Emblem you occasionally find Silver Axes, and never recruit anybody who can equip them. In the DS remake you do get several axe fighters, and the Silver Axes are replaced with what they were worth in the first place: gold.

    Turn Based Tactics 
  • XCOM
    • Many alien items have little or no use for the player, but can be sold for big bucks. Particularly noticeable with Mind Probes - of questionable utility on the battlefield, but worth more than even the heaviest guns when sold. Of course, it's not hard to imagine why various civilian and military bodies would be quite interested in mind-reading devices. Alien corpses can also be sold for a pretty penny, which leads to the question of what these people are doing with all these dead aliens...
    • Its sequel, X-COM: Apocalypse, has several items which were originally supposed to have an in-game use, but was never implemented. One of these things is Psiclone, a narcotic implant often found by gangs and cults in the city (which can lead to X-COM raiding gangs, stealing their drugs, and selling off the take to fund their operations.)
    • In the reboot XCOM: Enemy Unknown, some stuff you can find in UFOs, like alien surgery or damaged flight computers, are only useful as source of cash when you sell them. In a rare display of benevolence from the interface, the player is explicitly notified that those items have no research benefits and should be sold.
    • Both sequel and remake have plasma weapons, which are great to be sure. However, virtually every enemy you encounter carries them, and you'll get so many extra ones over the course of the campaign that you can sell off a half-dozen or so after every mission and never miss them.

    Wide Open Sandbox 
  • You can literally sell anything you find in the trash in Chulip... and this includes piles of Poopie.
  • The Golden Carp in Terraria serves no purpose other than to be sold for an easy ten gold. The Neon Tetra serves the same purpose but doesn't sell as much, to offset the fact it can be caught in the jungle easily.
  • Yakuza 0 has Plates, items which are commonly found in substories or by helping victims in the streets, and which serve no other purpose than to be sold. Yakuza Kiwami has one mission where you need a plate (for a dog to drink from), but they're equally useless after that (and even then, you could just sell your gold plates anyway and buy an iron plate that's 1000 times cheaper when you need it).

  • In Red & Ted's Road Show, the Indian Trader in Albuquerque will buy the various kitschy souvenirs Ted has collected and trade them for points.

    Non Gaming Examples 
Anime & Manga
  • In Beyond the Boundary, defeated youmu monsters turn into stones, which are taken and sold to humanoid youmu appraisers. This is how most Spirit World Warriors make a living.

Fan Works

  • In the Eye of the Beholder: The Shadows leave behind quartz bits upon defeat that Lydia sells in the Velvet Room for large amounts of cash to share amongst the group, which they spend on things including but not limited to clothing enchantments for everyone from the Velvet Room (Lydia), paying for art supplies (Jacob), and spending hundreds on convention merch (Damien and Allie). It's even lampshaded that their parents don't really ask where all their extra disposable income is coming from, though Lydia does insist that they refrain from spending too much at once in the real world lest people get suspicious.


  • In one of the 1632 stories, a mercenary captain asks his XO why there are three packets of tampons in the strongbox, beside bags of various coins. The XO calmly explains that women are paying through the nose for the things, and there aren't any more being made, so they were a better investment than keeping the silver.

Live-Action TV

  • This is the basis for shows like Auction Hunters and American Pickers. Both shows feature people who make their living buying things that would typically be dismissed as not worth very much and then reselling them for large sums of money to the right buyers. Sometimes even the literal trash itself can be valuable - at least one of the storage trailers purchased by the Auction Hunters was full of scrap metal that they were able to sell to the scrap dealer for a few hundred bucks, on top of all the other valuable contents.


  • It's the entire point of this strip from The Noob
  • Nodwick pretty much parodies this whole idea. More often than not, the haul that the team takes back from a job (which the main character is forced to carry) has as much junk as it does actual treasure. This was taken to its logical conclusion in one story when they had so much junk that Artax decided to hold a yard sale.
  • VG Cats parodied the Animal Crossing example mentioned above in this comic. Of course, it's also thematically applicable to a number of other games.

Web Video

  • Predictably for a series that parodies video game tropes, Epic NPC Man has the titular character deal with this.



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