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World of Badass

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In this world, all of this happening at once is an everyday occurrence!
"If all of us are awesome, everyone is."

In the World of Badass, every character is a badass. Even the daintiest girly-girl will be a butt-kicking Girly Bruiser. Even the scrawniest of nerds will be a Badass Bookworm. Far from dying first, the black dude will be the guy you least want to mess with. And you should probably just steer clear of gay people altogether. Even that adorable dog might be tough as nails. May or may not be Rated M for Manly, after all badassery comes in many shapes, personalities and sizes. Oh, and expect a few or everyone to have an Awesome Mc Cool Name.

Obviously, this is a dangerous place to be and will often overlap with Crapsack World and/or Death World not only because of said danger but also because such worlds are fertile breeding grounds for the Black-and-Gray Morality that so often inspires true badassery. This can lead to Anti-Hero, Anti-Villain and Heel–Face Revolving Door characters popping up at frequent intervals. Other common character archetypes include the Cowboy Cop, Crazy Survivalist, Determinator and Blood Knight.

Frequently overlaps with Everyone Is Armed. Compare Everyone Is a Super, Had to Be Sharp.

If the protagonist of a World of Badass has a Love Interest, expect them to become (or, in some cases, start out as) a Battle Couple. If they have kids, it's best to avoid messing with said kids. In fact, the kids may well be able to take care of themselves. And a Non-Action Guy or Faux Action Girl doesn't even need action skills and manages to be a badass other ways, often by being a Science Hero or Guile Hero.

The World of Badass will occasionally, due to the comparably high "Holy Shit!" Quotient, overlap with the World of Ham and Adventure-Friendly World. However, it's also possible for this trope to be applied to Crapsack or Dystopian worlds where every character is a badass out of necessity, see Had to Be Sharp. This trope is not to be confused with World of Buxom, although the two can overlap. If every badass is an Action Girl, then it's World of Action Girls. See also World of Muscle Men.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • The post-apocalyptic world of Bastard!! (1988) is filled with badassery at every turn, complete with heavy-metal-themed names.
  • Ben-To: Every single character is Made of Iron, otherwise they'd all be in traction.
  • Filled of crap though it may be, Berserk is this. Four out of five people in this world need to be just a little bit badass at one point in their life in order to survive it, and this includes old people, little kids, and princesses (if only for one moment). If they still don't qualify as true badasses, then they're usually big time action survivors. And even under the most horrific circumstances, people don't just stop being badass: they merely shift from one state of badass-ness to another. For instance, Casca starts out as an Action Girl, then had a brief period of being a Pregnant Badass which horrifically ended with the Eclipse and her going insane as a result of it... only to having glimpses of her former self.
  • Black Butler has a whole lot of badass, for Victorian London. The butler is a Nigh Invulnerable demon, who can kill you with silverware. The Aunt's butler is a chainsaw wielding, red haired psycho, who just happens to be a Grim Reaper. The house servants are an escaped human experimentation test subject with Super-Strength, a ridiculously skilled sniper who can shoot anyone dead from miles away and a badass ex-soldier. The fiancée is a two sword wielding Little Miss Badass who can cut down a horde of zombies.
  • Black Lagoon takes place in the fictional Thai city of Roanapur, a city riddled with corruption, crime and violence, where gunfights happen in a frequent business, and almost every named character can kick all sorts of ass, whether it be with a guns, knives, or your clever wits. This is especially true if you're a woman. Let's just put it this way, in Roanapur, if you have a name, then you are a SURVIVOR.
  • Bleach. Any named character who resides in Soul Society or Hueco Mundo is able to kick your ass. Yes, even the wimpy White Mage, and yes, even the guy who transforms into a pink pumpkin. To say nothing of the human characters, who with the introduction of the Vandenreich number among the strongest characters in the series hands down.
  • In Brave10, the 10 Braves have powerful elemental magic abilities and everyone kicks ass in this series. Only Isanami is an exception, and not quite since she is a God in Human Form. By the sequel, she is able to beat Izumo no Okuni with battle fans.
  • The entire Esper population of Academy City in A Certain Magical Index. And the Magicians are no slouches either. As well as some of the normal ones too!
  • Despite being a Gag Series, Cromartie High School is populated by Badass delinquents like Fireball of Junior 2 and Hospitalizer of Junior 3 among other crazy things like a gorilla and Shinichi Mechazawa.
  • Dorohedoro. You can't be non-badass and survive in a world where Devils go for a walk when they're bored, much less in a city where the yearly Zombie Apocalypse is a fundraising event. It's good that Death Is Cheap, otherwise Anyone Can Die would have slaughtered most of the main cast by volume 8.
  • The world of Dragon Ball where everyone is a super-powered martial artist, and even the comic relief Muggle Mr. Satan/Hercule is a Badass Normal who can kick any non-powered human's ass (and a zombie horde....with his bare an old man who hasn't fought in at least a decade....yeah, that's Dragon Ball for you).
  • Durarara!!: Half of the cast is borderline insane, while the other half is badass in one way or another. No exceptions. And since Durarara!! takes place in the same universe as Baccano!, this makes sense.
  • In Fairy Tail, 10% of the world's population is made up of mages, and there are surprisingly few Squishy Wizards.
  • Miyuverse Alternate Universe in Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA 3rei. How much more badass is it? Even eternal Butt-Monkey Matou Shinji is a legitimately deadly threat!
  • Fullmetal Alchemist is an interesting case, in that the premise doesn't sound like it's trying too hard to be cool, but then you are given Scar, Major Armstrong, Colonel Mustang, the Elric brothers, Izumi Curtis, Riza Hawkeye, and many, many more. You can count the number of non-badasses on one hand, even though it's a series with tons of characters.
  • Hellsing. Sure, not everyone is as badass as Alucard, but that's like saying not everything is as hot as the sun. (Or Alucard.) Kouta Hirano's other work Drifters also qualifies. It's to be expected, when your premise is to take notorious Historical Domain Characters, give 'em an upgrade, and have them fight each other.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers is a non-Crapsack World example. It is a comedic anime about anthropomorphic personifications of various nations, with some countries, for example the superpowers, being rather childish. America calls himself hero and loves video games, China loves Hello Kitty and Russia considers everyone his friend and loves sunflowers. Still, they're superpowers and we also see America swinging a buffalo over his head as a child, China beating up the entire Axis with a wok and Russia being late to a meeting because he was practising to stop tanks with his body...
    • In the Hetalia Bloodbath 2010, Sealand, who isn't even a real country, beats a mysterious enemy who was trying to kidnap him, showing he is literally Made of Iron.
    • Then there's Italy, who's always quick to raise the white flag when he gets attacked. But as Chibitalia, he once defeated the Turkish Ottoman Empire. While the charakters in Hetalia in general don't spend that much time being badass, it doesn't mean they can't be, if they want to.
  • Hunter × Hunter played this so extremely straight it becomes a Deconstruction. Well, when you have a 10-something hired killer from a Murder, Inc. family… Specifically, the deconstruction is: What happens to the non-badass people? Well, they die left and right, and the police are pretty much useless against the evil Badasses.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. By Stardust Crusaders, it's practically invoked as a law. Stand Users seem to be drawn together by fate. So if you're one, chances are your daily life will generally involve badasses.
  • Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple. Just about everyone except Kenichi to start with, until he undergoes Training from Hell.
  • In Kill la Kill, even the weakest mooks that the main character blows through en masse have Agent-tier Super-Speed, and things only go up from there.
  • In the Lyrical Nanoha series, the world of Mid-Childa is a non-Crapsack World example. Generally, the rule is that if it comes from Mid-Childa and has a name, it will be able to annihilate you. It doesn't matter whether you are talking about five year old girls, ferrets or six inch cute mascots. Or books. This is because a large portion of Mid-Childan population are capable of magic, and damn near anyone with that talent attends a Wizarding School where advanced magical combat replaces your regular PE. All of this under the auspices of the galaxy-spanning Mildly Military Space Police that is so short on hands that they're willing to hire nine year-olds, as long as they can use magic—all the while the memories of a centuries-long Great Offscreen War some 80 years ago are still painfully fresh. So yeah, it may not be a Crapsack World, but only because all the badasses in it at some point decided that there had to be another way.
  • Ironically, Cephiro of Magic Knight Rayearth qualifies as one. Everyone the girls meet is some kind of powerful swordmaster or wizard, even though it was a land of utter peace and harmony not so long ago. Even Lantis, by necessity a Professional Slacker because of the general peace, is seriously formidable.
  • In Mission: Yozakura Family, anyone can be a spy if you look hard enough. That little kid down the street? A Hollywood Hacking specialist. The nice guy running the bubble tea stand? Sells bullets in exchange for blood, eyeballs, or cash. Even the dolphins at an aquarium can be spies.
  • This does not apply to the main setting in Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid (which is modern day Japan), but the world Tohru and the other dragons come from definitely qualifies. In episode 2, Tohru and Kanna have an awesome DBZ-like battle with cool explosions, battle aura, and power beams. They call it playing/roughhousing, since they're only at what is considered a human level in their world.
  • My Hero Academia plays with this. In a word where everybody has super powers, not all of them are fitting to big acts of badassery, such as simply attracting small objects. The series though focus on the group of in training super heroes that scored the highest grades on the entrance test, thus focusing on a group with powers such as Super-Strength, control gravity, create fire and ice, create various objects, having engines on their body, creating explosions and so on.
  • Naruto: Almost everyone relevant to the plot displays their badassery in one way or another.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi is filled with badass fighters and magicians. The residents of the Magical World can also kick ass.
  • Noir depicts a village in France where everybody, with no exception (children, old women and nuns included), is an assassin trained to mass-murdering or die in attempt. As just are the main characters, Mireille and Kirika and most part of the other characters as well.
  • One Piece. If you don't have a Devil Fruit or do not already have an inhuman degree of strength, you're most likely to be just Made of Iron. That's mostly the reason nobody usually dies in One Piece outside flashbacks, at least until the Marineford War.
  • Being a Deconstructive Parody of the Shōnen genre, One-Punch Man is a world where monsters, aliens, mutants and city-leveling events happen on a daily basis, the only thing getting in their way being every kind of superhero imaginable only just barely being able to stop them. The titular hero Saitama is the most badass of them all, having God-mode level physical power capable of eliminating any threat with a single punch.
  • Pokémon Adventures, a world where humans are more likely to be fighting along side of their Pokémon instead of just hanging back.
  • Every noteworthy character in Ravages of Time is a certified badass, even more so than in the source material and most adaptations. Keep in mind that "noteworthy" here means in excess of a few dozen characters, and the manhua has not even covered a third of the original novel!
  • Rosario + Vampire has this as a running theme in the Youkai World, where there is a pecking order based on how strong you are, and it's a ruthless Social Darwinist.
  • The Seven Deadly Sins. Various characters within the series possess such incredible strength that massive amounts of destruction is quite common.
  • Soul Eater. Pretty much every single character who isn't cannon fodder for the kids' Gotta Catch Them All schooling is badass at some point in time.
  • In YuYu Hakusho, you pretty much have to be this if you even hope of surviving in the Demon World, a place populated with A and S Class Demons. Hiei himself slaughtered over 500 A class demons in order to get himself to an S Class demon. To prevent an all out war between three nations, the Demon World had to set up an Asskicking Leads to Leadership Tournament where the winner would be crowned king of the Demon World.

    Board Games 

    Comic Books 


By Title:

  • Scott Pilgrim. At first it seems like only a few people can really fight, but it becomes pretty clear that almost every minor character or random background extra could probably throw down with some bizarre fighting style or weapon if sufficiently provoked.
  • Sin City. Even the Comedy Relief bad guys, Shlubb and Klump, can withstand an explosion from close-range. Well, the Yellow Guy is anything but badass.
  • Last Man Standing is filled to the brim with badass characters. The only one who isn't is a Robot Girl, ironically.
  • Jim Valentino's normalman features the planet Levram, where everyone has super powers. Everyone, that is, except the eponymous character normalman. And as the series progresses he gets increasingly badass without ever gaining super powers.

    Fan Works 

    Film — Animation 
  • In How to Train Your Dragon, the citizens of Berk have become battle hardened over generations of battling dragons. Hiccup is essentially a black sheep for not being innately badass (at least at first).
  • Zig-Zagging Trope in The Incredibles. The world is indeed full of badass superheroes, but it turns out that ordinary people don't want superheroes around so they make them illegal. Many of the supers also wind up getting picked off one by one by Syndrome's killer robot. The point is repeated a few times: "If everyone is super, no one is."
  • Kung Fu Panda: Almost every named character is some kind of kung fu master and even those that aren't have their moments.
  • The LEGO Movie. Their entire world arguably counts. They've got an elite team of builders who smash mooks in the most awesome way possible and can build anything to kick your ass. Even the citizens count once they've got their creativity back, they can build gigantic mechs to kick robo-ass in the most awesome ways possible. Even the most ridiculously average guy could take out an entire highway of police cars and bikes filled with robots trying to murder him with Motorcycle Fu.
  • The Super Mario Bros. Movie: Mostly downplayed as the Toads aren't particularly shown to be strong in general, but platforming is practically a basic skill needed whenever you're in the Mushroom Kingdom. Toad's tour shows that things like jumping across moving platforms several stories above the ground is something that Toads calmly go through on a daily basis. Just living with them ensured that Peach was able to perform impressive aerobic feats in a dress and high-heels. Mario, as a comparison, is incredibly athletic by human standards yet still struggles with platforming for quite a while.

    Film — Live-Action 


By Author:

By Title:

  • Belisarius Series: Almost every character is a badass. Aside from the title character, his wife is a retired hooker who is somehow able to kill half a dozen assassins with a meat cleaver and a cauldron of stew, his wife's best friend is a spymaster of spymasters, the seeming Damsel in Distress can kill men with her bare hands, and convince her former captors to pledge loyalty to her; her husband is one of the two greatest warriors in India. And on and on.
  • The Crest of Zabutur brings us the world of Mencu, populated with creatures called Serenghe. Given that all of them possess some form of elemental manipulation abilities, you'll be hard-pressed to find even a civilian who cannot hold her ground in combat.
  • From Jim Butcher is Codex Alera. The humans are descendants of a Roman legion who all have Elemental Powers. (The one exception is way, way more awesome than most of them could ever hope to be) They share the place with Neanderthal-elves that bond with giant ground sloths and terror birds, telepathic yetis, 8-foot-tall centuries-old wolfmen with Blood Magic, and the Zerg the Vord, a Horde of Alien Locusts led by a Nigh Invulnerable juggernaut of a Hive Queen. Other denizens include nature spirits that start to resemble Eldritch Abominations and sea monsters that are about forty feet long as infants and tend to eat anything that comes close. Even the accountants can kick your ass.
  • Called out, and somewhat subverted at the start of Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon:
    ... self-replicating organisms came into existence on this planet and immediately began trying to get rid of each other, either by spamming their environments with rough copies of themselves, or by more direct means which hardly need to be belabored. Most of them failed,... Like every other creature on the face of the earth, [Godfrey Waterhouse IV] was, by birthright, a stupendous badass, albeit in the somewhat narrow technical sense that he could trace his ancestry back up a long line of slightly less highly evolved stupendous badasses to that first self-replicating gizmo — which, given the number and variety of its descendants, might justifiably be described as the most stupendous badass of all time. Everyone and everything that wasn't a stupendous badass was dead.
    As nightmarishly lethal, memetically programmed death-machines went, [his parents] were the nicest you could ever hope to meet....
  • In Harry Harrison's Deathworld series, the planet Pyrrus is a literal world of badasses. Even small children have to learn to be incredibly strong, quick-witted, and deadly to survive for very long on Pyrrus.
  • Discworld. If you intend to mess with someone here, make sure they're not harmless old men, witches, wizards, dwarves, trolls, Mrs. Cake, demons, gods, gnomes, D'regs, hairdressers, Mrs. Cake, werewolves, vampires, pictsies, heroes, Mrs. Cake, assassins, monks, Sir Samuel Vimes, Death, Susan Sto Helit, Lord Vetinari, the Luggage, or last, but not least, the Librarian (and Mrs. Cake). It's a wonder that anyone else is left in the place.
    • Ankh-Morpork has The Shades, which is such a dangerous neighborhood that in Night Watch, the revolutionaries don't even bother building barricades on the Shades side, because not even the freaking army will go in there.
      Vimes: "You know what they call a horse in the Shades, Fred?"
      Fred: "Yeah, Sarge. Lunch."
    • An entire town called Bad Ass appears in Wyrd Sisters. Unsurprisingly it is the home town and base of Granny Weatherwax. Visitors to Lancre have been warned. Apparently a donkey once stopped midstream and refused to go either forwards or backwards. But that's their story.
    • Possibly a Shout-Out to Shea and Wilson's Illuminatus! trilogy, in which the Texan town of Bad Ass is a throwback to earlier ornery Confederate ways and has a robust attitude to all those northern carpetbagging liberal sissy notions such as desegregation. Bad Ass is an embarrassment to the rest of the USA, which uncomfortably realises that badass is how the rest of the world sees the whole of America.
  • Very few characters in The Dresden Files are not some degree of awesome:
  • David Eddings flirts with this trope from time to time.
  • James H. Schmitz's Federation of the Hub: its society is purposely being manipulated in order to raise the vitality of the human race. Since the Hub's main exports are Magnificent Bastards, it works.
  • Nearly everyone in The First Dwarf King is a hardcore fighter to some degree. Those (few) who aren't make up with wits what they lack in brawn.
  • Honor Harrington is the Action Girl par excellence, but after looking at the rest of the cast, one begins to feel she's hardly remarkable in a universe that contains, among so many more, her parents, her pet, her best friend, her monarch, her subordinates, most of her opponents, those opponents' President, Space Marines, super-spies, Ambadassadors, an Amazon Brigade, and Victor Cachat.
  • It doesn't matter what someone's archetype is in Horizon in the Middle of Nowhere, because they'll be able to abuse the setting's Sufficiently Advanced Science to be badass. Kimi, a dancer, is literally untouchable in combat. Shirojiro, a merchant, can fight giant robots with his bare hands. Toori, a fool, is a bottomless energy well. Neshinbara, an author, can make anything happen just by writing it. And they're the support types. Armed characters will do anything from be a shield, to cut anything they want, to summon legions of the undead instantly, to ground flying ships in single blows, and anything in between.
  • Older Than Feudalism: The Iliad. The protagonist Achilles single-handedly pushes back the entire Trojan army back to the Trojan walls and is such a mighty warrior that Zeus tells the gods he's worried Achilles might break Fate itself in his desire to conquer Troy, Hector duels Achilles (he loses, but the fact that he's even willing to fight at all is awesome), and gets 2 books dedicated to him slaughtering people on the battlefield, Diomedes wins fights with not one but two gods and is described by the Trojans as being even scarier than Achilles despite the fact that he, unlike Achilles, is fully human and has no superpowers... Basically the only important character who isn't a total badass is Paris of Troy.
  • John Carter of Mars: World of Badass is an excellent description of Barsoom where the Mad Scientists carry swords; the Damsels In Distress are likely to slip a dagger between your ribs and little old men can give the best swordsman on two planets a fight to remember.
  • The Malazan Book of the Fallen series has badass characters in droves, ranging from Physical Gods to Badass Normals. Among the hundreds of named characters it would be easier to list who isn't a badass. Those would include... well... the Mhybe and Challice D'Arle. That's about it.
  • World of Badass is a literal description of what happens to the setting of Men. There are only eleven people left on the planet, all men, and they are all incredibly damned awesome.
  • With the frequent intermingling of gods of various pantheons and mortals in Rick Riordan's Percy Jackson and the Olympians and the universe it shares with his other works you would be very hard pressed to find anyone who can say they aren't at least some form of badass. The main characters (usually demigods or magicians with various awesome powers) regularly fight and slay some of mythology's greatest monsters, and aren't afraid to tell the gods themselves where they can stick it when their jerkassery and petty bickering gets too much. Even some completely normal humans without these abilities can claim to have done something crazy and/or awesome: such as a teenage girl throwing a plastic hairbrush at the ruler of the Titans, a dad strafing a mob of monsters in a Sopwith Camel after his daughter was kidnapped, or the title character's parents fighting monsters with a sword and a shotgun they literally just found not a few moments ago.
  • Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. Even Lydia is decapitating "unmentionables."
  • Pride Wars: Pretty much everyone is trained to fight.
  • Anything ever written by John Ringo. Whether the protagonist is a grisly military veteran, an average joe or a teenage girl, they're never helpless or overwhelmed, always aware of their surroundings, and pack copious amounts of grit, determination, firepower and, most importantly, Genre Savvy.
  • The Sandokan saga is set in such a world: Marianna, Sandokan's Love Interest (and later wife), is a Military Brat who can shoot a rifle with the best and has no qualms hunting tigers; Darma, Tremal Naik's daughter named after his pet tiger, is actually more dangerous than her namesake, as tigers can't shoot; Tremal Naik and his old crew in the Black Jungle (of which only Kammamuri survived their debut novel) made a living out of hunting tigers in a very dangerous jungle; the Thuggee killed off most of Tremal Naik's fellow hunters, with their leader Suyodhana overpowering Tremal Naik in single combat (and he's lean and short while Tremal Naik is described as tall and muscolar); and so on, with the title of most badass character being shared by Sandokan (who killing a tiger with a knife and came out on top in his Duel to the Death with Suyodhana, to cite two of his feats) and Paddy O'Brien (the self-styled Demon of War, a small and fattish Mad Scientist who invented a ray to ignite the magazines of enemy warships. It takes a cannon shell to the face to kill him, and even then he has the time to complain for the destruction of the machine he just blew up an enemy ship with).
    • This is actually a constant in Emilio Salgari's works, with Sandokan merely being the one to stand out the most for the sheer quantity of badass named characters: the science-fiction novel Le Meraviglie del Duemila has loads of unnamed characters that fly through the world in airships carrying what amounts to small nukes.
  • Tellos, the setting of Shadow of the Conqueror, is very much this. It's a Crapsack World where humans Had to Be Sharp to avoid extinction, and the vast majority of people are skilled duelists as a result.
  • The Silmarillion: Middle Earth's First Age is full of Elven Lords and Human Heroes. Just to name a few:
    • Fëanor: Explicitly stated to be the most clever and skilled elf to have ever lived. When Morgoth, the most powerful and evil being in all the world visited his home, he told the God of Evil in no uncertain terms to piss off and slammed the door in his face. Killed fighting seven Balrogs at once despite being sorely wounded and on fire for most of the fight. When he died of his wounds, his sheer rage and refusal to die peacefully caused his body to immolate into ash.
    • Fingolfin: Defied Morgoth before his own gates, and actually managed to hurt him and maim him, though he was killed in the fight.
    • Then you have Thorondor, king of the Great Eagles of Manwë, who steals away heroic Fingolfin's body from Morgoth's own hands and also takes the chance to rake Morgoth's face using his talons.
    • Finrod Felagund: Nice Guy King of Nargothrond and Galadriel's brother. When a werewolf tried to eat his friend Beren, he broke free from his chains and fought the werewolf with his bare hands and teeth. His Heroic Sacrifice was deemed so noble that he became the first elf in history to reincarnate in the lands of Valinor.
    • Lúthien: Rebellious Princess. Entered Morgoth's stronghold, danced before him, put him and his entire army to sleep with a single spell and casually walked out the chamber with the Silmaril from Morgoth's crown. Died and convinced the God of the Dead to revive her and her lover.
    • Ecthelion of the Fountain: Champion warrior of Gondolin and the original owner Glamdring, the sword Gandalf would come to use. Killed Gothmog, Morgoth's general and Captain of the Balrogs by impaling it on his helmet crest.
    • Glorfindel: Slew another Balrog by tackling him off a bridge and plunging to their mutual deaths.
    • Húrin Thalion: Thalion being the sindar word for "badass". Performed a one-man Last Stand against an army of orcs and trolls and was only captured because he became buried under their bodies and his battleaxe melted because it got so soaked in bile-blood. Brought before Morgoth and offered "mercy", Húrin mocks Morgoth to his face even in the face of a horrible curse that will affect all his family and descendants.
    • Beren Erchamion: When his putative father-in-law sets him an Impossible Task ("Go to Hell and come back with a gem from Satan's crown, and then I may consider letting you marry my daughter!"), his reaction is basically "Pfft, ''that's all'' you want for Lúthien? I expected something harder." Sets out on a quest that is basically Frodo's journey into Mordor on Nightmare Difficulty, and succeeds!
    • Eärendil: Middle Earth half-elf astronaut. Sailing to the land of the Valar in the world's Darkest Hour, he arrives to pull a Big Damn Heroes against Morgoth's flying forces with his own force of angels and giant eagles. Leading the attack, he personally shoots down Ancalagon the Black, a dragon big enough to shatter a mountain when its dead body fell from the sky.
    • Azaghâl, King of the Dwarves. Crushed under the body of a colossal dragon named Glaurung, but stabbed it in the belly with a dagger using his last ounce of life, sending the wyrm screaming in pain back to Morgoth. Effectively saving his entire army in the process.
    • Rog, one of the twelve lords of Gondolin and head of the House of the Hammers of Wrath, led a counterattack against the forces of Morgoth and ripped the whips from the hands of the Balrogs and began beating them with their own weapons!
    • Eru Ilúvatar, who remains very hands-off with His creation for most of time, is so outraged by the arrogance and cruelty of the Númenóreans that he makes a single exceptional moment of direct involvement by destroying the entire continent of Númenor in a mix of the Sinking of Atlantis and the Great Flood. Eru Ilúvatar's divine retribution is so powerful that it literally changed the shape of Arda, turning the world round. Not forgetting Sauron's treacherous hand in all this, Eru smites the rogue Maia so badly that he can never again take physical form in the world!
    • Even ordinary people get in on this. Every time the Men take up arms against Morgoth's armies, they die in heroic rearguard actions and face-meltingly awesome Last Stands, or lead crippling guerrilla warfare attacks. When the Dwarves marched while gathering King Azaghâl's body away from the battle, their anger and sorrow was so terrible that Morgoth's soldiers didn't dare take the opportunity to attack them.
  • Snow Crash. You have Hiro the Determinator pizza delivery boy/Playful Hacker/Master Swordsman who takes out an aircraft carrier singlehandedly when the crew refuse to listen to Reason. You have Y.T the teenage skateboard courier who takes no shit from anyone and has enough self-defence gear to take out an entire FBI hit team by herself. You have Raven the Psycho for Hire Badass Biker with glass knives and a nuclear bomb in the sidecar that is tied to his vitals. You have Uncle Enzo, The Don who fights and probably kills Raven with just a straight razor and his wits, you have Ng the Handicapped Badass who uses a modified 30-ton airport firetruck with Internet access as his "wheelchair", and you have Juanita the hot nerd who can literally hack into your brain. Even characters who only appear for a few pages are completely awesome.
  • There Is No Epic Loot Here, Only Puns: The town of Durence is quiet, peaceful, and in the absence of much ambient mana, most of its residents are fading away into empty shells. They did that on purpose, retiring there so that they could forget their pasts, and in many cases, so that the king would not bother to chase after them and arrest them, because antagonising the town is a colossally bad idea. Each of them is epically powerful, from Haldi the cheese mage who once destroyed the king's castle with a cheese golem, to Isanella, whose powers over sound let her disable a Royal Guard for threatening her son before Isanella even speaks, to Mrs Dabberghast the druid who can make the earth rise up in colossal thorn dragons and fill her enemies' lungs with ants.
    Mr Jones was a nice man and if Quiss ever felt the need to die slowly and painfully by having spawn, he wouldn't mind Mr Jones teaching them. He baked cookies, listened to students, never had a student fail since he took over in the last 5 years. It was the only hope this community had of reaching a standard education.
    Quiss also knew the man was hearty. He confiscated a black wand from a student yesterday. In a town like this, magical weapons were a dime a dozen and outside of this town, they would all sell for a small kingdom's annual income.
    Thankfully, Mr Jones dispatched the skeleton army the brat raised before history class was over and had a stern talk with the mother of the student, the Black Bog Witch who was now the town's glass and Metal crafts shop owner.
    The woman could make cauldrons like no one's business. How she managed to make them of clay she kept to herself.
    Mr Jones was alright in Quiss' book. The fact he was a Knowledge Demon from the 142nd layer of the abyss didn't make the clean shirt and nice tie any less attractive. Many women and men had often fought with their spouse about who got to go to the parent-teacher meeting to stare at his straight teeth and lovely hair.
  • In order to be a Time Scout, you have to be a badass. Hell, just to associate with a time scout will probably require you to be a badass. The only people who aren't badasses are tourists. They're just kind of annoying.
  • The Traitor Son Cycle: vast majority of the characters belong to one army or another, and in this world, human armies have to contend with the Wild creatures, who all have either sharp teeth, sharp claws, advantage of mass and height, awesome magic abilities or all of this at once. Even the civillians are more likely than not to be sorcerers of serious power, and the dragons are just short of Physical God - and they still get killed by the Badass Normals.
  • Warrior Cats. Yes, nearly every single one of the 700-some characters is trained to fight and can hold their own in a battle. (Except the kittypets, but some of them are pretty basass too.)
  • The Witchlands sometimes feel like they're populated solely by either Badass Normals or witches. Granted, there are civillians mentioned from time to time, but if a character gets a name, they're a badass - no exceptions.
  • World War Z is a justified example. Nearly all of the survivors have stories of badass survival, from which one can infer that non-badasses could not survive the Zombie Apocalypse.

    Live-Action TV 
  • 24. Put it this way: Kim Bauer has fought off psychotic kidnappers, smashed her abusive employer in the face with a crowbar, broken out of police custody by setting fire to the transport van while she's in it, fought off seasoned, bloodthirsty war criminals with a hot coffee pot, and more. In any other series? She'd be a bona fide Action Girl. In this one? She's a Damsel Scrappy. That's right — these are the accomplishments of the LEAST badass person in the main cast. And then there's Behrooz Araz, a doe-eyed teenager, who enacts some seriously badass Shovel Fu on Day 4.
  • Alias: Even relatively dorky characters like Mitchell got to save the day or make sassy remarks while being horrifically tortured from time to time.
  • Babylon 5: This is a show that has diplomats that can endure torture, break chains, personally command battle fleets, or even out — Chessmaster multi-million year old space demons. It also has an outpost commander who goes back in time and becomes a Messianic Archetype. Not to mention Battle Butlers that can pick up a man with one hand or fiendishly arrange for the prisoners to be lost in paperwork and found somewhere where they won't be exterminated.
  • In Banshee, even the weakest characters tend to be Made of Iron. The strongest tend to be a One-Man Army.
  • The Doctor of Doctor Who has a habit of making his companions badass. Over the course of series 6 alone, Amy Pond goes from a flirtatious Fiery Redhead to a full on Action Girl, while her husband has broken the badass scale because he has taken so many levels. And that's not taking into account the other 40-odd years of continuity. Let's face it, the Whoniverse is as much a World of Badass as it is a World of Ham. Considering that the Whoniverse is full of god-like psychopaths, Sufficiently Advanced Aliens, Time-Traveling mutant Super Nazis in flying minitanks, Eldritch Abominations and other baddies like flesh-eating shadows, there's no wonder it's this trope. The least badass character would be a tin dog, and even he wields a built in gun.
  • Farscape's significant characters include a Badass Bookworm hero who can build doomsday devices, one pregnant badass who guns down enemies in hard labor and another pregnant badass who heads up an armada, a villain who's Too Kinky to Torture, a priest who used to be an assassin, a Cute Bruiser with a fondness for groin attacks, and a Badass Bureaucrat who survives three bad bosses. Even a scrappy in this verse will be able to melt metal with her screams or mystically survive molecular dispersement.
  • Game of Thrones. Westerosi politics can be very hazardous to your health, so if you aren't a great fighter, thinker, schemer and/or liar, you will certainly wind up with your name on the death list.
  • In the Tokusatsu GARO, the Makai, a hidden civilization of demon hunters, is clearly this. Be it Priest or Knight or any other entity that hails from or connected to it, you're pretty much going to be powerful and badass.
  • Hercules: The Legendary Journeys. Almost every character in this show, be they princess, middle-aged mother, or barmaid, seems to be a rather good fighter. (Salmoneus may be an exception.) This rule seems to also apply (perhaps to a lesser degree) to the spinoff Xena: Warrior Princess.
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power: One cannot survive the tumultuous Second Age without being clever, a great warrior, a chessmaster or a believer in the Power of Friendship. This is a world where gods can sink entire lands under water, demons and other unknown horrors that lie beneath Middle-earth, Maiar wandering among the creatures of Middle-earth, the Always Chaotic Evil Orcs are scarily efficient, you have graceful warriors like the Elves of Eregion and Lindon or the Proud Warrior Race Dwarves of Khazad-dum, Galadriel being Xena-like warrior, and Sauron, the most infamous badass of the Second age ,is about to screw over everyone for the centuries to come.
  • Everyone in Lost gets their badass moment.
  • The cast of Merlin is comprised of a Badass Wizard (Merlin), a Badass Normal (Arthur), a Pretty Princess Powerhouse (Morgana), a Badass Damsel (Guinevere), a Cool Old Guy (Gaius), a Badass King (Uther), a Heartbroken Badass (Lancelot), and a Badass Crew (the Knights of the Round Table). Oh, and a giant fire-breathing dragon.
  • NCIS: Where the most seemingly harmless member of the team can kill you without leaving a single trace. Again, this is also broadly true on JAG & NCIS: Los Angeles as well.
  • Nikita. Seriously. The Deuteragonist is an ex-Sex Slave turned sniping, shotgun-wielding Combat Pragmatist Action Girl. The Smart Guy can call on Attack Drones and isn't shabby in melee either.
  • Pizza: Australia is a dangerous place to run a pizza place.
  • Prison Break: If you didn't become a badass on Prison Break then most likely you would end up dead.
  • Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World: Given the plateau is a Death World, what else could the world be?
  • Smallville: Being the first fully-fleshed out live action version of The DCU, Smallville quite naturally evolved into a massive example of this trope. First of all, it's centered around the future Superman, young Clark Kent, along with Badass Normal characters like Lex Luthor, Lois Lane, and Jonathan Kent. And then we get other superheroes like Green Arrow and the rest of the Justice League of America, along with many of DC's supervillains. Put it this way, almost every main or recurring character (and even most of the one-shot characters) either are badass already, or become badass with Character Development.
  • Spartacus: Blood and Sand: Basically any character that isn't a badass is just there for decoration. Virtually every character of note kills somebody. The result is an Anyone Can Die situation, since the entire show pretty much amounts to a bunch of badasses all trying to kill each other. Spartacus is notable not just for the sheer number of badass characters, but also for their variety. Relevant types include Action Girl (Mira and Saxa), Cool Old Guy (Lucius), Dark Action Girl (Naevia, of all people), Dreadlock Warrior (Barca), Genius Bruiser (Spartacus), Handicapped Badass (Ashur), Heartbroken Badass (most of them), One-Man Army (Caesar), Pregnant Badass (Lucretia and Illithyia), Scary Black Man (Doctore), and Silk Hiding Steel (Sura and Aurelia).
  • Stargate Atlantis: The Pegasus Galaxy is not a safe place to live. After millennia of the Wraith treating the entire galaxy like a McDonald's drive-through, even noncombatants have to be badass to survive. Any given day in Atlantis could turn up something new and horrible to kill you, but every single person on Atlantis knows the risks and keeps fighting the good fight, regardless.
  • Stargate SG-1. Even the resident nerds are badass. And then there's Bra'tac — 130+ and still kicking arse.
  • Torchwood revolves entirely around a bisexual team of alien hunters: immortal Captain Jack, outwardly mild archivist Ianto, police-trained Gwen, shy and tech-savvy Tosh, and field-capable doctor Owen. Translation? Any one of them can and will kick the ass of anyone who gets in their way or hurts their team, probably in a variety of ways.
  • Walker, Texas Ranger, especially in later seasons where the fights lasted longer.
  • The Walking Dead (2010). Justified, in that it's set post zombie apocalypse, and therefore everyone who's not badass is dead. Special mention must go to Michonne, Daryl Dixon, and Tyreese. Daryl beats a zombie to death despite having an arrow through his side, pulls the arrow out to shoot another zombie with, climbs out of a ravine and walks all the way back to home base despite his injuries, then gets mistaken for a zombie due to his blood-soaked state and shot in the head and still has enough left to throw off a one-liner before finally passing out. It's In the Blood, apparently, since his older brother killed multiple zombies and escaped Atlanta immediately after cutting off his own hand. Then there's Tyreese who can melee a swarm of zombies by himself with just a household hammer!!!...and survives!!, Then there's the bad ass action chick Michonne who wields a damn katana, and uses it very well.



    Professional Wrestling 
  • Professional Wrestling is, in kayfabe, a world a badass. Even the wimpiest jobbers are enormous, muscular dudes who fight other enormous muscular dudes for a living. And behind the scenes, it takes an enormous amount of physicality, endurance and tolerance to work through matches.
  • How convincing any given case was varied, especially when Kodo Fuyuki got the book and started allowing non athletes in the ring, but Frontier Martial-Arts Wrestling at least tried to present every conceivable style and competitive division within pro wrestling as equally valid. It was part of Atsushi Onita's belief that "everything should be allowed in puroresu". Beyond this, FMW was a dangerous place, where sharp hazards were common place and any given lacerating edge could also be connected to a high voltage circuit or rigged to trigger a landmine. No wrestler was theoretically safe from this, so even the lowliest of FMW jobbers had to be some degree of badass.
  • In Ring of Honor pretty much anyone, once they're in the ring and the bell has rang, should be expected to put up some kind of fight, no matter how many times they've been easily beaten or runoff outside of matches. Even drug addicted spoiled brat rave kids in the depths of depression will fight back from the seeming break of defeat against soon to be main event acts like Generation Next numerous times before getting pinned. Even the sleazy porn star pampered by a wealthy foreign dictator can get a Hope Spot against the number one contender to the world title. Even said dictator, whose cowardice is legendary, will execute slams and throws from the top rope when forced to wrestle without backup. Even "obese" or "anorexic" rookies like Bobby Dempsey and Cheeseburger tend to show quite a bit of resilience before the moments we're supposed to take them a little more seriously. Even the "delicate" reporter best known for her cleavage will go down swinging against center of the women's division who is bigger than most men. Even the Las Vegas style show boys who previously could not lift a single car tire when working together or stand to dig a hole for more than a couple of minutes can suddenly roll, run and jump around like crazy while apply hold and executing counters, becoming two thirds of the trios champions, even if actual star wrestler Dalton Castle did most of the work. Dave Meltzer apparently isn't a fan of this trope, as he has occasionally down rated ROH matches for little other reason than the feeling some people are trying too hard show what they can do and too little to play their roles.
  • Almost every fed using the "super indie" model at least tries. ROH, a company literally created to put a spotlight on talented wrestlers, probably isn't even the most extreme example. Around the same time Pro Wrestling Guerilla was founded on the philosophy every wrestler should be given enough time to "get their shit in".
  • Dragon Gate is distinct among pro wrestling feds as Glass Jaw Referee does not apply nearly as often as expected. At one point there was a violent feud between the collective referees and one of the many power stables. Also, while Dragon Gate is usually as monogendered as any stereotypical Japanese fed, with a particular focus on cut pretty boys, on the rare occasion valets do appear they will usually be high flying garbage wrestlers. The standard wrestlers still win, 9 times out of 10 against the more unconventional foes, but the fact that they can even put up a fight, and technically even have a belt to challenge for in the Open The Owarai Gate, is still weird.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Exalted. If your character can't be described as an utter badass, you are doing it wrong. You know that you are living in a World of Badass when the fairies are soul-eating Eldritch Abominations, and are some of the weakest beings in the setting.
  • Feng Shui, naturally, since it's based on action movies, especially Hong Kong ones.
  • Strike Legion, where even the lowliest mooks with 1 in their stats are as good as the real life best in their fields, and things only go up from there.
  • The Warhammer 40,000 universe, of course. This happens largely through a twisted form of natural selection; the insufficiently Badass simply die in droves at the hands of the rest.
    • That being said, a few worlds earn a specific mention, such as Cadia, which stands directly on the one way out of the setting's version of hell (that's saying quite a lot, actually (the Warp actually is Hell in the lore)), forcing the population into becoming the best soldiers of the Imperial Guard.
      • Catachan might be an even better example than Cadia. It's a world where every plant and animal is poisonous, carnivorous or both, the jungle constantly encroaches on any settlement laid down and needs to be burned away every day, the native flora and fauna include venus flytraps that can move and eat people, scorpions the size of tanks and frogs which can explode and kill anything within a kilometer, and the natives are all hugely muscled, tough-as-nails knife-loving Rambo-esque survivalists. Cadia is a world where people have to be badass or they get killed as adults. Catachan is a world where everyone has to be badass or they don't see adulthood.
      • During the Indomitus Crusade launched by the revived Roboute Guilliman, the Crusade reached Catachan only to discover the planet's...well, everything, was so deadly and aggressive even the daemon armies of Chaos fled the world and avoided it. Much to the Crusade's amusement (it even boosted morale). After all, horrific, world-smashing abominations from beyond the pale are afraid of a planet humans successfully settled. "Badass" doesn't even begin to cover the Imperial Guard (who survive to become Veterans, at least).
      • Cadia is a world where everybody has to be badass or they get killed as adults (or children, as there are child regiments fighting there). Krieg and Valhalla are worlds where everybody has to be badass AND they get killed as adults.
      • Mordia is a world of badasses who live strictly disciplined lives to maintain order (really, every hive world should emulate them). So focused on discipline that they are known to execute commissars for negligence of duty if they feel the commissars were being too lenient. Commissars in Warhammer 40,000 commonly shoot their own soldiers in battle to motivate the others to fight harder out of fear. Commissars fear the Mordians. The Mordian Iron Guard regiments take this badassery and discipline to an extreme to the point that they stand in firing lines to blaze away at the enemy. Fortunately, they have carapace armor sewn into their clothing and each squad has its own house-sized tank firing over their heads. This tactic works very well, too. They also have entire companies of super-heavy tanks any one vehicle of which is capable of turning the tide of entire wars.
  • Warhammer Fantasy, although in this case it's one-third natural selection, one-third the will of the gods, and one-third taking on Bloodthirsters without semiautomatic rocket grenade launchers or tanks the size of small cities.

    Video Games 
  • The entire world, including the primary setting of Seoul, became this in Agents of Mayhem after an in-universe event known as "Devil's Night". Even the movie stars, fashion models, and football players became badass real quickly, if they weren't already!
  • Anarchy Reigns. Even the seemingly harmless bartender robot can (and will) kick your ass.
  • Arc the Lad is a world where even a pathetic coward in the Seyran army's drum corps can become a fearsome One-Man Army Magic Knight. The real heavy hitters on every side are outright Persons of Mass Destruction. And it takes thousands of years and entire civilizations composed of these people to defeat the Big Bad.
  • Asura's Wrath is MADE of this trope. From a rampaging demigod whose strength seemingly has no limit and who gets stronger the angrier he gets, a deity that becomes bigger than the Earth itself, to another one who has a sword that can extend all the way from Earth to the fucking moon, and pierce right THROUGH IT! And that's just the three characters revealed in the demo.
  • Bayonetta, with a select few, is filled with these and is also a world of camp. The game is the Spiritual Successor to Devil May Cry and the titular protagonist is very much a female Dante. note 
  • Blazblue Cross Tag Battle takes several of BlazBlue's biggest badasses, the Investigation Team, the cast of Under Night In-Birth, and Team RWBY, and tosses them all together in a gigantic clash of worlds.
  • Borderlands is all about being a badass in a Death World of badass where only badasses survive. If someone is alive in Pandora, it's because that person was cunning and careful enough to not die due to the scorching sun, the flaming lava rivers or the freezing polar wastelands, can kill the universally carnivorous local fauna that eats absolutely everything they see and is well adapted for that task, and can fend off the local bandits that are permanently and universally Ax-Crazy. It goes as far as calling high level enemies "Badass", and giving you a literal Took a Level in Badass in the form of Badass Tokens that permanently increase your stats and are obtained by clearing minor challenges.
  • Brütal Legend is a world of badasses, fueled by the epic awesome of Heavy Metal.
  • City of Heroes for the most part has a rather large percentage of the population being superheroes and/or supervillains.
  • The Contra series, which involve Rambo-like soldiers fighting off aliens and terrorists. This is especially present with Neo's opening.
  • The Darksiders series is this by default: With human life on Earth destroyed following the Apocalypse, the only remaining beings are superhumans fighting among themselves in the ruined remains, meaning you have to be a badass to survive. The main protagonists are the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, who belong to an ancient Proud Warrior Race that they singlehandedly destroyed in order to protect all of creation. By themselves, they are phenomenally powerful warriors that can make short work of anything that crosses their path. Together? They are a force capable of rivaling Heaven and Hell. Angels and demons themselves are fairly badass, with the former using advanced futuristic technology while the latter employs eldritch abominations alongside the legions of Hell (although they are fairly easily cut down by the protagonists). Outside of Earth, other forms of life exist and all of them are comparatively superior to humanity in one way or another. Really you could count the number of non-combatants in one hand and some would still have traits that makes them awesome such as the Makers (giants with the reputation of builders and smiths, but still have super strength and can go toe-to-toe against a Horseman in a single duel).
  • From the same company as Halo, we have Destiny. The basic premise is a solar-system spanning, five-way war between The Guardians, immortal Persons of Mass Destruction, The Fallen, Gadgeteer Genius Space Pirates, The Hive, magic wielding, death worshipping, undead monsters, The Vex, Reality Warping, Hive Minded robots that covert entier planets into machines, and The Cabal, a militarized, heavily armed Galactic Superpower with a penchant for Orbital Bombardments and Earth Shattering Kabooms. And that's not even counting the Rogue A.I. hiding somewhere in the wilderness, or the handful of Guardians who have made a Face–Heel Turn over the centuries.
  • Almost every major character introduced in the Devil May Cry series is a badass, though it's mostly justified by them having supernatural powers. However, even normal humans can be badasses too; like Lady who has ridiculous stamina, and Nico who can ram demons with her van. There are only a few double subversions such as Kyrie who's presented as a Damsel in Distress by the events of Devil May Cry 4 (but was willing to use her body as a shield to protect a child from a demon attack), or Patty who's just a little girl in the anime adaptation (but was risking her life to wake Dante up and tried to pull the Rebellion despite her small body).
  • Disgaea, very much so. Nearly any character with a name has some ability to fight and pull of some insane fancy attack that defies the laws of physics. And since demons solve nearly everything through fighting, Netherworlds quickly turn into this because of how their inhabitants keep trying to assert their dominance.
  • Dragon Age II, more so than the first game. Fewer cowering screaming people, bigger dragons, and nobody flinches from battling the guy that according to the tales killed a High Dragon with a rusty spoon. Given what kind of place Kirkwall is, most of the population Had to Be Sharp.
  • The Dynasty Warriors/Samurai Warriors series quickly spring to mind, where even a 90 lb girl wielding beautiful twin fans can kick epic levels of ass on a battlefield filled with thousands of sword-wielding Mooks.
  • The eponymous province of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is this by way of Grim Up North. It doesn't matter if it's the tiniest, most peaceable village or a bustling metropolis; if it gets attacked by dragons or vampires, everyone, from soldiers to town guards to merchants to housewives, will ready a weapon or a spell and throw down. Whether they're any good at it is something else.
  • The Fallout series, bare minimum, requires EVERYONE be an Action Survivor, and if you want to enjoy a healthy lifespan in a post apocalyptic world where quite often everything tries to kill you, being some sort of badass is about the only way to enjoy most of your natural lifespan.
  • In any given Fighting Game all the characters can kick your ass. Nearly every playable character in an Action Game is going to be able to fight his or her way through countless Mooks to reach his/her goals. Even the Joke Character might be badass in the hands of the right player.
  • Final Fantasy is probably a universe of badass. (Multiverse really, but technicalities.)
  • Fire Emblem, where a little girl can with a little experience and luck destroy an entire army by herself.
  • Front Mission. Everyone knows how to pilot an asskicking wanzer. Everyone.
  • Gears of War has plenty of examples.
    • Gears are so hardcore that they wield assault rifles with chainsaw bayonets, can reload the hard way, so the shots have higher damage, and can shrug off anything except direct hits with explosives or headshots from anti-tank rifles. Revolvers sever limbs, machine guns mulch targets, and Torque Bows (don't let the name fool you, it's more like a hybrid of a bow, a Gauss gun, and an RPG) double as lethal melee weapons. The best part? By the third game, female Gears do all of these things as well.
    • On the enemies' side, you have one of toughest video-game mooks ever, with basic soldiers dying after a whole magazine of SMG ammo or withstanding a point-blank shotgun blast.
      • Locust women are even tougher than the men. The biggest Locust males get are the Boomers and their variants, while the female Locust are the Berserkers. Ten foot tall mountains of rage, pain, and more rage that run as fast as a speeding truck and hit as hard as one too. In Gears of War: Aspho Fields, Colonel Victor Hoffman speculates Locust males have to hold Berserkers down so they don't kill anyone when it's time to "get busy". And then there are the creatures the Locust Horde use...
  • Guild Wars is a game where major characters who can't fight are extremely rare.
  • Guilty Gear, a tradition continued in its Spiritual Successor, BlazBlue.
  • Halo. Granted, most of the perspective is from the military of both humans and the Covenant. Halo 5: Guardians puts this Up to Eleven with everyone getting a chance to show how badass they are - even the Unggoy.
  • Every player character in Hotline Miami and Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number is a badass. Even the designated Non-Action Guy/Action Survivor can single-handedly Non-Lethal K.O. his way through a building full of The Mafiya.
  • Overlaps with Everybody Was Kung-Fu Fighting in Jade Empire.
  • The world of Kunio-kun/River City Ransom. Unlike other Beat 'em Ups where you're fighting a specific gang or crime syndicate, here you fight everyone in the city, and everyone is a capable fighter.
  • In The Legend of Zelda game Hyrule Warriors, every character you can play as is capable of killing entire legions of Mooks single-handedly. Fowl farmer who can kill scores of enemies with bomb arrows? Check. 35-year-old Manchild who slaughters his foes by popping a balloon in their faces and tossing bombs at them? Check. Ten-year-old "Princess?" who can beat up the king of evil by throwing butterflies at him? Super check.
  • Mabinogi: Even aside from the PCs, you see a lot of memory sequences (and actual fight scenes) of NPC army characters being extremely badass.
  • In Mass Effect 2, we get Tuchanka, the homeworld of the krogan, who are the resident Proud Warrior Race of the series. All krogan are unstoppable juggernauts fueled by rage and copious amounts of headbutting. The krogan had nuked themselves back to the Stone Ages because modern technology had made life too easy, so this overlaps with CrapsackWorld. All krogan encountered in the game are warriors, whether they be soldiers or mercenaries, and their weapons of choice are their skulls.
    • For extra fun, consider the physiology of the Krogan- This was a race that had to be hostile-genetically-engineered so that only one-tenth of a percent of their children survived, and they have wide-set eyes, a prey-type evolution.
  • Metal Gear, where everyone is a hard-boiled double agent who may or may not have supernatural abilities. A world where a woman gives birth to one of the most famous Chessmasters in video game history via a messy C-section and then immediately leads the charge at Normandy on D-Day. A world where a hapless rookie sent on a suicide mission with no gear at all ends up becoming the greatest Professional Killer in the world. A world where a mute female sniper who respirates through her skin and a legendary PMC commander suffering from old wounds and bad hallucinations can annihilate an entire Soviet tank division. A world where katana-wielding cyborgs get into fistfights with hulking, nanomachine-implanted, all-American senators. A world where Earth's biggest badasses are nothing more than extremely well-trained men and women with charisma, willpower and a silenced pistol facing some of the most dangerous things the world has to offer, and they always coming out on top.
  • Any MMORPG city's population will consist of various badasses who's day job is usually killing things. People who aren't badasses tend to be 5 or 4 to a city.
  • Monster Hunter is set in a pseudo-medieval/stone age/bronze age Death World populated with dinosaur-like and dragon-like creatures that make Tyrannosaurus rex look like a pussy, and nearly all of them are Made of Iron and possess Elemental Powers. The eponymous human "monster hunters" are all Badass Normal Proud Warrior Race Guys (keep in mind that Gender Is No Object is in full effect here) armed with traps, gadgets and some really, really big weapons. Chefs cook some amazing meals to keep the hunters fed and full, the smiths make weapons and armour from monster scales and claws as well as iron and steel, the fishermen and traders all have Cool Boats and brave dangerous monster-infested waters to do their jobs, the elders who live in the hunting zones do so unarmed and alone, you can just go on and on.
  • Mordheim: City of the Damned is so much this, true to the source material. You have all-female hammer-wielding holy warriors with supernatural powers, conniving Ninja Rat Men from a brutal empire under the earth, psychotic mutants and deranged cultists who worship some ancient thing in a pit in the centre of the city, and a ragtag bunch of ordinary sellswords with nothing but discipline, gunpowder and sharpened steel, all duking it out in a ruined city overrun by mutants, maniacs and worse. It truly is hell on earth, you need to be a badass just to survive a day, and even then not everyone is going to make it.
  • No More Heroes, where everyone with a name has some degree of badass in some completely insane way in them. Might as well call it a World of Awesome.
  • Being a Crapsaccharine World in need of heroes, Overwatch is filled with various forms of badass in its playable roster, ranging from the British Action Girl to a cowboy to a vigilante Super-Soldier to the Husky Russkie powerlifter to a Cyber Ninja to the Gamer Chick turned Mini-Mecha pilot to a robotic Buddhist monk to a super-intelligent gorilla from the moon, and more.
  • Project × Zone took this trope a bit further; it's not just one world anymore. Six worlds of badasses exist and all of them include a lot of badass people both heroes and villains (Earth, Phantom World, Hell, Alternate Earth, Endless Frontier, and the different star systems in the future).
  • Rebuild: It's not uncommon to have survivors with maximal level in soldier. Hell, if you're playing in a huge city, everyone will have maximal level in soldier at the end. Even the scientists, who in the second game can learn combat skills as well.
    • In the third game, it's encouraged through perks like McGyver and Scrapper, the former adding half of one's science skill and the other adding the entirety of one's scavenging skill to their combat ability. It really says something when while the other 4 skills you can have rarely can exceed 20, you can get your combat skill on most survivors up to 30, which is three-times the maximum of what your natural skill can be.
  • Everyone has a badass moment in Resident Evil. Even Ashley from Resident Evil 4 has one or two moments and she is a Damsel Scrappy.
  • Sengoku Basara, also know as "Epic Manly badassery: The Video Game Series". Its H-Game parody, Sengoku Rance, basically is the same formula, just with a different gameplay engine and tons of estrogen due to massive amounts of Gender Flip (though none of the women are less badass as a result).
  • As the page image shows, Serious Sam is a world full of badasses and action.
  • Every Shin Megami Tensei game and their spinoffs either ultimately turn into this over the course of the game or already are from the get go. In fact, Devil Survivor, Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne, and Digital Devil Saga pretty much have this as a survival prerequisite.
    • Devil Survivor 2 recently took this Up to Eleven. In other SMT games, if you didn't have demons, demon power, or could otherwise fight them in some way, you were screwed. In this game, though, not only is demon summoning ability available to pretty much everyone worldwide as long as you have a cellphone (which IRL and ingame are easy to get and very widespread) and a free downloadable app, even that isn't necessary in one level where unarmed, non demon summoning civilians are fighting demons and demon summoners and doing pretty well.
      • Not to mention the fact that the first game had an in-game justification/Hand Wave on why normal unarmed humans could hope to stand up to demons in a fight and not be killed in a single hit from them: no such thing exists in the second game, implying that everyone's just that strong normally.
  • In Sifu, anyone the Student runs into in their quest for vengeance is going to be able to kick their ass as they're perfectly capable of single-handedly kicking everyone's asses in turn. It doesn't matter if they're junkies in the slums, clubbers who're part of a cult-like martial arts school, or random employees in a healing retreat, everyone knows Kung Fu.
  • S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: When the entire setting of the game is a Class 0 apocalypse filled with eyeless rabid dogs, monkey-like mutated soldiers, Cthulu-mouthed abominations, psychically augmented monsters, and periodic class 3b emissions, it's pretty hard not to be anything but a Badass Normal. Oh, and did we mention that there are also localized physical anomalies, ranging from scorching jets of flame to space-time portals?
  • StarCraft. Especially in StarCraft II. The medics wear power armor.
  • Street Fighter has evolved over the years from regular tournaments to epics where the fate of the world lies in the hands of martial artists the world over, and most martial arts are Supernatural Martial Arts to some extent as these fighters throw out Ki Attacks, use Elemental Powers to strengthen their attacks with fire, lightning, and ice, and can easily break stone, concrete, and steel with their bare hands and feet. The World Tour mode of Street Fighter 6 takes this further, as Everybody Was Kung-Fu Fighting is in full-effect: street fights are as commonplace a sight as street food vendors, and the player can challenge virtually any NPC they cross paths with to a fight.
  • Super Robot Wars (Yes, even Boss and his Borot get to be badass). Likewise, the Endless Frontier. It's more like several interconnected worlds, who are all badass in a unique way.
  • Australia in Team Fortress 2 is a Country of Badass: the men fight everything they can get their hands on, the women have epic moustaches, and the girl scouts have been known to wrestle bears. The whole world still counts as Abraham Lincoln was the first BLU pyro, and George Washington was a spy. Also, Shakespearicles. And Kicasso. Oh yeah, and even a humble taxi driver can make a powerful, Lovecraftian wizard back down.
  • Touhou Project is set in Gensokyo, a realm that has become the nexus of Japan's magic and badass. When a character that can freeze their opponent solid in an instant and another that can shatter boulders with their fists are mocked by fans and other characters for being too weak, then this trope is inevitable.
    • Subverted with the Moon, which houses an advanced nation of god-like individuals known as the Lunarians; on one hand, they're stated to have fought off the whole might of the above crashing down at them in the distant past, yet by their present state, they've soundly been fought to a stalemate and minor defeat by both humans sending soldiers on the moon with 70s era technology as well as the same fairies that are often considered weaklings in Gensokyo proper. It remains to be seen whether or not their planned invasion of Gensokyo will end in failure.
  • Urban Rivals: When 22 factions are vying for control of the city, even the weakest combatants have to be Badass Normal.
  • Valkyria Chronicles: During the Action Prologue, rural characters seems to respond to an Imperial invasion remarkably well, every house seems to have a rifle in it, and then the protagonist's sister drives out an old tank that was hiding in the barn. The following scenes quickly explain Gallia has a policy of universal conscription, weapons handling and crisis response are taught in high school, and Isara mentions she had done a tank engineering elective and had been maintained the Edelweiss on her own time.
  • Warframe: An army of fascist clones on one side, a Mega-Corp on the other, and caught between them are all the little people who have to survive in a post-apocalyptic, transhumanist wasteland where half the animals are actually robots that violently defend their territory. Then there are the Tenno, the player characters, who work with all of them at once in order to play the big sides against each other and keep the innocents safe.
  • The Wonderful 101 has almost all the characters, both good and evil, either human, robot and alien, all of them badass in their own way. Even the people you save can be recruited and become temporary superheroes in their own right. It's less a world of badass and more a universe of badass.
  • In World of Warcraft, Pretty much any named character who's done something relevant is likely to be a badass — such as Illidan, Malfurion, Tyrande, Jaina, Thrall, Arthas, Uther, Varian, Fandral, Archimonde, Kil'jaeden, Medivh, Maeiv...
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 1: The main character is a Badass Bookworm who shrugs a plot-induced coma off in only 30 minutes of gameplay, while it took Cloud half a disc, his mentor singlehandedly ends a war against giant killer death robots and shouts haikus in battle, the puffball "mascot"-looking character can tank tons of damage, equip heavy armor, and hits 9999 HP before any other character; said puffball's race charges into battle against aforementioned evil killer death robots alongside humans and not-elves, the medic is the only character with a semi-reliable instant kill move, the effeminate-looking not-elf prince is described as "looks like a sissy, but he's got guts", a minor comic relief character survives having a troop transport dropped on him and is nigh-fearless even when faced with one of the tougher baddies in the game, and did we mention they're all fighting giant evil killer death robots that eat people? And the main character kills, then becomes a god. Not to mention that both continents that the game takes place on are what remains of two warrior gods who fought each other to a standstill, making the term "world of badass" almost literal.

    Visual Novels 
  • In Majikoi! Love Me Seriously!, there are very few characters who can't fight, and many who take it to a ridiculous degree. The anime even opens with a war game including the entire school. The same event is also in one of the routes.
  • The Nasuverse itself. If they have a name, they have badass points:
    • In Fate/stay night every main character has severe badass credentials by the end except Shinji, really. Yes, even Ilya and Sakura. Fate/hollow ataraxia barely changes the cast, but even those few it adds are amazing, such as Bazett Fraga McRemitz, a human who can go toe to toe with Servants — in fact, she has her own Noble Phantasm, which only Servants are supposed to have.
    • Angel Notes, a virtually unknown piece of work within the Nasuverse, involves swords so long they can carve out chasms in the earth, and humans slaughtering an Eldritch Abomination. World of raging badass indeed — then again, it did give us Archer.
    • And by extension of the Nasuverse, Battle Moon Wars.

    Web Animation 
  • Monty Oum's Dead Fantasy series is this. Of course, Dead or Alive and Final Fantasy are both badass worlds, but the power and skill of many characters is increased considerably and everyone is capable of kicking huge amounts of ass. The clearest example of this is Kairi; while she does admittedly have her moments in the games, she mostly stays out of fighting, but she is depicted in Dead Fantasy as an unstoppable Badass Adorable whirlwind of ass-kicking.
  • DEATH BATTLE!: A show where some of the greatest warriors in fictional history are pitted against each other in the Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny. Win or lose, each fighter is a badass to some extent or another.
    • In Death Battle itself, several warriors have had their homeworlds described as this. Dragon Ball was noted to be a "universe full of planet-busters" and the aforementioned world of RWBY was one to the extent that Boomstick immediately fell in love with it.
      Wiz: The world of Remnant is... well, crazy. Vicious creatures called Grimm run wild, entire cities have gone to waste, and every single weapon is also a gun. Even nunchucks.
      Boomstick: Oooh, that sounds like Disneyland to me. The happiest, most gun-filled place on Earth!
  • RWBY, another of Monty Oum's creations, takes place in a world filled with supernatural monsters, magic, robots, ninjas, beast-men, witches, and adorable ass-kicking angels with insanely awesome mix and match weapons. The resident Butt-Monkey easily decapitates 10-foot tall demon bears. Even the corgi is capable of beating Mini-Mechas.
  • Shock, on, is a stick animation based in a world so badass, that this is what happens when you want to apply for a position AS THE FUCKING JANITOR.

  • The Adventures of Dr. McNinja is pretty much this combined with Rule of Cool. Ninja doctor with a velociraptor-riding, revolver-toting bandito sidekick. Whole family of ninjas. Pirates that fly around in their airships. A zombie-killing chrononaut/astronaut for a mayor. The list of badasses goes on.
    • One story involves an army of primitively-armed humans attacking, successfully at first, a fortress full of gun-toting dinosaurs. Some of the humans turned into giant lumberjacks and wrestled the dinosaurs to death. In case it's not obvious, insane badassery is pretty much the entire point of this comic.
    • King Radical is from an alternate dimension called the Radical Lands, where everything (including the living helicopter-tree hybrid, and the sun) wear sunglasses for starters, also badass nicknames are the norm. And title character Dr. McNinja would be considered an average citizen in that alternate universe.
    • Then there's the giant ghost powered robot made from the city using the city's zombie defence system.
  • In the world of Axe Cop, if you have a name, chances are good that you are either a good guy with superpowers or a bad guy about to be destroyed.
  • The main setting of Dogfight consists of anthropomorphic animal characters engaging in martial arts for the sake and meaning of justice. Pretty much most of the protagonists are martial artists with well-choreographed fight scenes that take advantage of their animal anatomy and psychology.
  • Girl Genius comes very close. Every character from top to bottom seems to get at least one moment of absolute badass, from the protagonist, to her Love Interest (and another, and third), to a traveling show full of minor Sparks, to some supposedly random soldier who woke up to find his airship on fire, to that pretty pink princess (fake, though she's a noble too). Oh, and Mechanicsburg managed to clearly stand out even there.
  • Every named character in The God of High School is fully capable of kicking ass. Even the weakest characters are able to leave massive craters in a boxing ring as a side-effect of a single move. As for the stronger characters... well let's just say that entire planets aren't safe.
  • Lyle Phipps manages to invoke this trope in Great. Everyone he interacts with is inspired to become awesome in what they do because of him.
  • Homestuck: If you've managed to get into the Medium and you're not badass already, you will be soon enough. In a more literal Crapsack World example, Alternia. Even surviving past infant-hood in Troll society requires a certain degree of badassness, since wigglers are put through a series of harrowing trials immediately after they hatch. It says a lot that a thirteen-year-old blind girl from Alternia is one of the most badass characters in Homestuck (how do you think she survived being effectively orphaned and blind for all those years?), and that even the wimpiest among the trolls has strong psychic abilities that allow him to tame and raise a virtual army of monsters. Although he usually uses them to play card games. Speaking of which, effectively everything on Alternia can be fatal. LARPing is extremely dangerous, every sport is a Blood Sport, those card games involve hatching actual, extremely dangerous Mons, and so on. No wonder those twelve kids beat Sburb in less than a month.
  • St. Louis is a city of badass in Lackadaisy. All the characters have their moments. Here's a list: Rocky Rickaby, who dances in and out of danger and gets in all sorts of trouble; Aunt Nina, a badass grandma; Freckle McMurray, who goes from quiet ex-cop to "murders three recurring villains with a Tommy gun while laughing like a maniac" almost immediately after finding the Lackadaisy; Mitzi May, who is simply an Action Girl; Dorian "Zib" Zibowski, who is a total badass without ever picking up a weapon; Mordecai Heller is, well, Mordecai Heller and the list goes on.
  • Noblesse: Anyone (attractive) in the series will inevitably be badass: thanks to the Noblesse, his butler, his butler's employees, plus their friends as well as their enemies who consists of Elite Mooks and worse, many buildings have been demolished in their fights.
  • The Noordegraaf Files has giant guns, magical warriors, sword fighting, robotic soldiers, cybernetically enhanced women, homemade Flamethrowers, and dysfunctional yet badass teenagers.
  • The Snafu comics by Bleedman; Powerpuff Girls Doujinshi, and Grim Tales from Down Below. Like mainstream print comics, the two feature superheroes, robots, aliens, beings of supernatural origin, etc.; rightfully fitting this trope from the get-go, but the real icing on this cake of badassery is that the characters have all on their own saved the world and/or universe at one point or another, and are now all together in one continuity.
  • Schlock Mercenary has a truly fascinating example. The galaxy is just filled with Mooks for Tagon's Toughs to savage, and Worthy Opponents to return the favor. But the Toughs themselves have a contagious case of Badass. They pick up a (ir)reverend (because he was the sole applicant) and a doctor (based on her cup size). The reverend is soon skewering enemy eyeballs with a fencing foil. The doctor ends up leading troops into curbstomps and delivering speeches "Like Patton with boobs". They grab an entertainment AI that simulated a holographic boy band because it wanted to quit. It's soon deftly piloting entire warships in a war against dark matter entities. They grab a bunch of loser thugs off from a Wretched Hive on a Scavenger World. The one with no arms can float like a butterfly (with gravitic assists) and sting like a bee (as in wrestle entire gangs with her tongue). They grab a Wrench Wench off a UNS battleplate that wants to get rid of her. She slaughters mobs singlehandedly (with Powered Armor and Post-Victory Collapse). They grab a fast-food worker with a background in Memetics that started dating one of their members and got accidentally picked up during a chaotic mission. She ends up promoted to lieutenant and strong-arming a scholar task force to track down the Precursors and ensure the survival of current civilization as a whole. Join The Toughs. Be Badass.
  • Supernormal Step goes beyond Willing Suspension of Disbelief in its diverse range of Badass characters. The whole series seems like an Original Character Tournament waiting to happen.

    Web Original 
  • The whole point of Badass of the Week. Being a badass is kind of a requirement for being featured.
  • Every anime that CJ DaChamp reviews has the characters act as if it's a Hood Film. Every character is treated as a stone-cold badass, or someone who wants to be one, willing to show disrespect to anybody else if it means being the best. Characters who prove themselves to be The Dreaded among badasses might be added to the Round Table of Black Air Force Activity, reserved only for the baddest of the bad.
  • Just about every rapper in Epic Rap Battles of History is a total badass.
  • The Internet itself is portrayed as one in Mission 404.
  • Neopia can be described as being a planet that wears Badass Adorable as its hat.
  • The Slender Man Mythos: Everyone is badass. They take on an immortal Humanoid Abomination that can Mind Rape and mentally snap nearly anyone. But then again... Ones that deserve mention are Zeke Strahm, Robert, Maduin, and Amalgamation Sage.

    Western Animation 
  • Avatar franchise:
    • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, you can count the characters who aren't badass on one hand. Even most of the ones who don't bend make up for it. To wit, one episode opens up with a random old guy in a fight with a platypus-bear. A century-long world war, in which few people in the series aren't involved in, will do this to people.
    • The Legend of Korra subverts this trope in terms of its franchise, but provides some justified exceptions. The main plot involves a brewing city-wide war between benders and non-benders, but, unlike its predecessor series, there are far fewer badasses in the world due to a seventy year stretch of peacetime and prosperity. The vast majority of the city's populace aren't fighters. They sit on the sidelines throughout the series. The police, who practice a rare art known as metalbending, are woefully outmatched against the military-strength Equalists. Even the Order of the White Lotus, who were the pinnacle of badassness in the original series, have become little more than mooks due to the long peace. The heroes and villains are the only real exceptions. The non-bender Equalist revolutionaries have dedicated training camps for their rank-and-file, and extensive financial and technical support to arm themselves. Meanwhile, the heroes only have extensive martial arts training due to their unusual backgrounds: two members are former gangsters turned pro-athletes who lived on the street, another was given extensive self-defense training after her mother's murder, and the show's heroine is a Kung-Fu Jesus whose powers depend on martial and spiritual perfection.
  • In Black Dynamite, pretty much anyone who isn't a ninja is a martial arts expert of some kind, from Whorephanage staff to living preschool-show puppets.
  • The Boondocks. Though Huey's portrayed as a martial arts expert, he's constantly matched or bested by senior citizens, psychotic women, and even Uncle Ruckus.
    Ruckus: "What? You think you the only one to learn the ancient and deadly art of the Nunchaku?"
  • Codename: Kids Next Door falls under this trope by virtue of being a World of Ham. We're talking about a show that's about a Badass Adorable Army of kids going against equally badass (if more than equally silly) villains, led by a Humanoid Abomination bent on harming and oppressing the world's children.
  • Deconstructed in The Fairly OddParents!, Timmy wished that his life would be like an action movie. And like an action movie, things went From Bad to Worse.
  • The entire cast of Gargoyles. The least badass character would probably be the mutated flying Cat Girl who can shoot electricity out of her hands.
  • Everyone in Jackie Chan Adventures qualifies to be this as there are so many martial artists, demons, wizards, magical creatures and whatnot altogether.
  • Kaeloo: Every single inhabitant of Smileyland is a badass, from the juvenile delinquent with his own arsenal to the seemingly quiet fat ugly girl.
  • Just about every character in Ōban Star-Racers is either an Ace Pilot, superpowered alien, or both. Even the grumpy Team Dad and his two mechanics still have fiery spirits. Then again the whole race is competing for who gets to be a space god, do you honestly think you could last without being badass?
  • Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go!: The main characters are a Sentai team made of a teenage Henshin Hero and his Killer Space Monkey teammates. Throughout the series, they encounter plenty of powerful and dangerous warriors, aliens and robots.
  • Cybertron, homeworld of the Transformers. Even the planet itself is badass, what with being a badass god, Primus in disguise. Even the least badass of Transformers is usually still a twelve foot tall car/robot hybrid with built in missiles and stuff. The least badass Transformers are probably either the Mini-cons (until they unleash their full Unicron-given powers and become a giant glowing green Unicron and battle the Chaos-bringer hand-to-hand or G1 Wheelie (except in the versions where he lived on a Death World all his life and has a necklace made of Sharkticon teeth. And still does the annoying rhyming thing which was made cool).