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You Break It, You Profit

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A subtrope of Rewarding Vandalism, where when you break something in a Video Game you receive a sum of money equal to the total cost of the damage you've caused. May take the form of a "mayhem mission" for games with a Sociopathic Hero or Villain Protagonist.


  • Most Armored Core games have at least one mission to rampage throughout the city and be compensated for the amount of damage you do.
  • Justified in The Bard's Tale, which features a corrupt barrel-maker who will pay you for each barrel you break because it means more business for him.
  • Blast Corps has one bonus level, Salvage Wharf, that challenges you to cause a certain number of dollars' worth of damage as quickly as possible.
  • Brigador: all Brigadors are mercenaries hired to destroy as much of Solo Nobre as possible to prepare for an invasion. You will be paid for destroying buildings, stepping on civilians and even for shooting grass.
  • The Burnout series has this in most of the games with its "Crash" events (like Burnout Paradise's "Showtime").
  • The Japanese arcade game Chō Chabudai Gaeshi (a.k.a. "Table Flip") is mostly scored based on the amount of damage you do, though other achievements (such as causing someone to fall out of the office onto a garbage truck) also add to your score.
  • City of Villains has Mayhem Missions, which were so much fun that the developers eventually had to add a similar mission type for heroes. (The heroes' "Safeguard Missions" are generally agreed to be less fun since you are expected to prevent vandalism instead of causing it.)
  • Final Fight: Streetwise: Parking Meters give money when broken. It takes 3 hits to make one spill the cash, you know, in case you're that desperate for $5.
  • The earlier Grand Theft Auto games would award you money for causing crashes, mowing down pedestrians, and causing general mayhem and destruction, with a multiplier being applied for how many missions had been completed without the player getting arrested. This mechanic was done away with starting with Vice City in order to give the games a less arcade-ish feel.
  • Most of the time in the LEGO Adaptation Game series it's just Rewarding Vandalism, but there are a few cases where you get an immediate amount of studs for breaking things, mainly automated levels like an Escape Sequence or Unexpected Shmup Level.
  • In Mercenaries, the A.N. will pay you a bounty for destroying North Korean vehicles.
  • Blurst's Minotaur China Shop game: You're supposed to be delivering items to customers, and if you try to do that, breaking items costs you money. But you can also break stuff on purpose once the minotaur is overtaken by his ancestral "minotaur rage", his shop's rage insurance kicks in and you start earning money for breaking things.
  • Overlaps with Attack Its Weak Point in Monster Hunter. More often than not, the way to obtain a monster's horns or fangs is to smash them, in which case they have a high chance of turning up as an extra quest reward after the beast is dead. This could qualify as Fridge Logic (for obvious reasons), but in another way it's Fridge Brilliance - the Guild probably takes the first cut of the monster's remains after you kill it, so the only way to get your grubby mitts on (what remains of) the valuable bits is to make sure the Guild doesn't want them.
  • Every game in the Saints Row series has this as a minigame, with the justification that you're breaking things to devalue property, bring media attention somewhere, divert police attention, or conduct a show of force. The Third adds a version of the minigame where you're breaking things with a tank. In addition, certain actions in the game (such as blowing up vehicles of a certain type) have challenges connected to them - once you complete that challenge, you start gaining money each time you do the action rather than respect.
  • In many simulation/tycoon games, The Sims being only one of tons of examples, bulldozing/demolishing something apparently counts as (basically) the same as selling it. It makes logic sense that you can sell a chair and get the purchase price money back again, but it is not so realistic that when you demolish a house or a fence, you don't have to pay for the demolition work - instead you are paid the exact same amount of money as you spent when you constructed the house/fence.
    • The Sims allows you to sell Windows for their purchase price.
    • The RollerCoaster Tycoon games, at least, deal with this by making some items not give you back money when you remove them, like fences and trash cans, and forces you to pay money to remove trees and bushes, which would likely have to be cut down with no gain. For some reason, though, footpaths can still be resold — even tarmac and dirt.
  • In Skate 2, if you get a certain number of damage points to your body when you bail and break a record, the Hall of Meat will pay you cash.
  • Sleeping Dogs (2012): Running over parking meters gets you money (presumably the value that was in them).
  • Star Fox 64: No actual money changes hands, but at the end of the game, Team Star Fox sends out a bill related to how many points they scored throughout the game. The amount on the bill is equal to 64 currency units for each enemy you shot down. It will elicit reactions from General Pepper, as well: below $70,000, he will state "This is one steep bill...but it's worth it", and above $70,000, he'll let out a Big "WHAT?!".
  • We Love Katamari has one level where your score is calculated by the monetary value of the items rolled up, rather than the katamari's overall size.
  • Zombie Driver has this. For some reason, the game states that The Mayor is paying you for killing zombies who are ruining his city. It doesn't explain why you also receive money for ruining the city yourself.

Alternative Title(s): Mayhem Mission