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Mangled metaphors in video games.


  • The Ace Attorney series does this periodically.
    • In Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, Spark Brushel's metaphors are so convoluted that it's difficult to know whether they fall under this trope, Mixed Metaphor, or something else entirely.
    • In Ace Attorney Investigations, Shi-Long Lang pulls out many wolf-related aphorisms that progressively make less and less sense, and eventually Edgeworth starts wondering what the hell he's talking about.
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    • Godot is also prone to doing this with coffee.
  • In Baldur's Gate, Minsc says: "Lead evil by example, and one day it will no longer go tracking its great muddy bootprints across our lilywhite tiles of justice. Boo will have CLEAN WOOD SHAVINGS, you evil bastards!"
    • And in the sequel, Minsc has this gem: "I trust those who prey on children no farther than they can be thrown, even if I manage to throw them pretty far, and throw them I shall!"
    • In Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition, Neera explains her Art: "Casting wild magic is like... playing a flute by ear. I just kind of picked it up as I went along, doing what felt natural. In magical terms, I can play a pretty mean tune. But when I miss a note, the flute shoots fire at everyone. Also the flute sometimes turns me into a hamster."
  • Borderlands 2:
    Handsome Jack: ''This is so frustrating, you see this is what I don't get about you bad guys! You know the hero's gonna win, but you just don't die quickly! Example: This one guy in New Haven. City's burning, people are dying left and right, yada yada yada. This jackhole rushes me with a spoon. A FRICKIN' SPOON! And I'm dying laughing, right? So I scoop his stupid little eyeballs out with it and his kids are all like WAAHHHH! And he's runnin' into stuff and... hahaha! And, oh... I don't know, maybe you had to be there. Anyway, the moral is you're a total bitch."
    • Also the description of a sidequest:
      Revenge is a dish best served out of some sort of food cannon that shoots out the food with enough force to kill someone. Also, the food is poisoned.
  • The description of the Burger Barn's "It Mustard Been Love" burger in Cake Mania 4: Main Street:
    Because as Jack says, "Love is like mustard: fiery... uh, pungent... and yellow. Maybe I need to give this a bit more thought..."
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  • In Dawn of War II: Retribution, the massive, heavily muscled ork Kaptin Bluddflagg suddenly realizes that his metaphor for the slender Inquisitor's untrustworthiness is not as apt as he thought it was...
    Bluddflagg: Dem Inquisishun humies can't be trusted any further dan dey can be thrown, which in dat one's case might be a bad example.
  • In Dragon Age II, one of Isabela's side conversations with Merrill about how she manages her Sexy Walk:
    Isabela: It comes to you. Usually at night. It's like a lover... or maybe a burglar. Either it ravishes you or makes off with all your jewelry. And you have to run it down and stab it in the heart. And... That metaphor got a bit away from me, didn't it?
    Merrill: I think it did, but it was certainly exciting!
  • In Fallout: New Vegas, if you report to Mr. House that you've exterminated the Boomers:
    Mr. House: There's more than one way to skin a cat, as the saying goes. Or went, that is. Cats being extinct.
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  • In Farmington Tales bank employee Gregory Cashman comments that it's time for Floyd to pay the piper.
    Gregory Cashman: Floyd, in this metaphor the piper is the bank—and, you are—well, you're the one who took out a variable rate loan from the piper. Um, and the piper started playing his pipe to signify that the loan was due-remember the piper is the bank...
    Floyd: Could we just forget the metaphor, Mr. Cashman?
  • Final Fantasy XIV:
    Dervin: Yet know that for evil to triumph, it is enough that good men know not the masterworks of Lord Derwin, novelist extraordinaire.
  • Ghostbusters: The Video Game has Egon's hilariously convoluted attempt at comparing the mandala that's causing all the ghost activity to a city bus line. Ray responds "You were going strong right up until the passengers got trapped inside the bus station."
  • Grim Fandango has this gem, courtesy of Glottis:
    "Manny, until now we scraped along the ground like rats, but from now on, we soar! Like eagles! Yeah, like eagles.. on POGO STICKS!"
  • Kang the Mad, a character from Jade Empire, is a master of this trope. When asked how he can remote control his flyer: "Well, it's much like the dilemma of the centipede. If he relaxes and lets things happen, he can walk naturally all day long, his hundred legs not missing a step. But, if he thinks too hard about the complexity of what he's doing, those legs might crash into the teahouse and kill everyone. A valuable lesson." Whether or not he's doing it on purpose is debatable.
  • Magical Starsign gives us the easily missable "Right, so, space is like this big onion, ya see? You know, onions got lots of layers? Well, you start peeling those layers off, and all you get is tears. But we do it anyway! You can't stop peelin' the layers, or else you've got nothing to eat! You feelin' me, kid?"
  • Fawful from Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga tends to alternate between this and his own brand of Engrish.
    "Princess Peach's sweet voice will soon be the bread that makes the sandwich of Cackletta's desires! And this battle shall be the delicious mustard on that bread! The mustard of your doom!"
  • Garrus is sometimes guilty of this in Mass Effect 2. His crowning moment, however, comes from the romance option with him.
    Garrus: You know me; I always like to savor the last shot before popping the heat sink.
    (awkward silence)
    Garrus: Wait, that metaphor just went somewhere horrible.
    • When Shepard tells Joker that he can turn EDI's sound off if he doesn't want to listen to her.
      Joker: That doesn't change anything, it's still watching! Like some creepy kid staring at the back of your head in a comp sci, you just want to punch him, but he's "special" and sets fires or something. Okay, a little far there, but you know what I mean.
    • In his loyalty mission in Mass Effect: Andromeda, Drack rather badly derails his comeback:
      Araome: I'm going to destroy everything you care about!
      Drack: Nothing's getting destroyed today, except for you! And your crew! And this entire place! And probably your boss! So there's a lot of things getting destroyed here actually, and all of them are yours!
  • If you value your ability to think logically and avoid falling over in paroxysms of laughter, do not allow Otacon to attempt to explain proverbs. Here's a good example from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty:
    Otacon: Another Chinese proverb. "Those who look to the Heavens prosper, those who defy it are no more." Do you know this one? The meaning here is — hold on a sec — that you can only survive as long as you're a part of the natural order of things. You remember pre-ripped jeans? Manufacturers thought that just because people loved old, broken-in jeans, they would want to buy new jeans that looked old. So they purposefully—
    Snake: What do jeans have to do with nature and order?
    Otacon: Denim should fray and rip on its own, naturally. Right? Some designers tried to go against that, and — no one bought them! The earnings report from that fiscal year is enough of a proof!
  • Nanashi no Game, of all things, gives us one courtesy of Professor Ohyama:
    "We'll use the contents of the Yutani Shin record that you retrieved as a guiding light, so to speak. Like lighthouses, the famous beacons of the sea. One beam of light piercing through the darkness, guiding the many travellers who journey across the ocean— Ah... I'm going off on a tangent again."
  • In Noitu Love 2, at the end of Xoda's Story Mode, the final Boss and our heroes talk about the Villain's evil plan. Almond says it is playing God, but the villain retorts that they will become God, and then goes back to the heroes' statement, pronouncing, proudly, something along the lines of "It will be Just like playing with myself."
  • There's a pink Bob-omb in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, found in Herb T.'s Cola Bar underneath Rogueport, who really wants to be an informant like Wonky. Unfortunately for him, most of his "information" just turns out to be this. For example:
    "I know stuff too! Seriously! Like... Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Because, you know, then all the other baskets get jealous. I don't even like eggs!"
  • Portal 2:
    • Cave Johnson has a notable metaphor regarding life giving you lemons...
      Cave Johnson: I've been thinking. When life gives you lemons, don't make lemonade. Make life take the lemons back! Get mad! I don't want your damn lemons! What the hell am I supposed to do with these?! Demand to see life's manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give Cave Johnson lemons! DO YOU KNOW WHO I AM!? I'm the man who's gonna burn your house down! WITH THE LEMONS! I'm gonna get my engineers to invent a combustible lemon that BURNS YOUR HOUSE DOWN!
    • Wheatley also uses a few odd misguided metaphors:
      Wheatley: Holmes versus Moriarty! Aristotle versus MASHY-SPIKE-PLATE!
      Wheatley: I'm still holding all the cards, and they're all full houses...
    • In the prequel comic Portal 2: Lab Rat, GLaDOS drops the following line to Aperture Science employee Doug Rattmann, whom she is trying to convince that her attempts to kill him are merely a schizophrenic delusion:
      GLaDOS: I'd ask you think think outside the box on this, but it's obvious that your box is broken. And has schizophrenia.
    • Also, from the Perpetual Testing Initiative Update Promo, when Cave Johnson talks about the company's motto over footage of a production line:
      Cave Johnson: Do it from scratch. Spare no expense. And never cut corners. Well, that's a corner cutting machine, we obviously cut them there...
  • Psychonauts: In "Gloria's Theater", if Raz asks why Jasper doesn't just leave if he hates the show so much, this is his response.
    Japser: I can't stop looking at it! It's like watching the scene of a horrible car accident... an accident where the victims can't act, and the paramedics forget their lines!
  • In Red Dead Redemption Edgar Ross attempts to explain civilization and outlaw behavior by using the metaphor of a man admiring a flower and shooting another man because he might not like the flower. Somehow, according to Edgar, it's a perfect metaphor, when he then goes on to tell John Marston that although the rules aren't perfect, they aren't so bad after all (like, the rule of you don't kill others just because they may not like the same things you like.) This only serves to confuse the hell out of John (and the player.)
  • Marina tries to talk Pearl down from her salt overdose after the Money vs Love Splatfest in Splatoon 2, but does Pearl truly understand?
    Marina: The more money you spend, the less money you have. The more love you spend, the more you get in return.
    Pearl: So love is like the stock market? Got it.
    Marina: What?! That's not what I-
    Pearl: Don't forget, participants: your prizes are waiting for you in the Square!
  • Star Wars Legends: HK-47 has one of these in Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords:
    "Theory: Imagine, if you will, that you are unique. The pinnacle of an exiled, cast-out Jedi who can't even use the Force. Imagine that no one has sunk lower than you. That you are truly the most miserable example of a Jedi ever. ... Now that you have that image, imagine this - someone clones you. Badly, I might add. They make the clones talk differently, rob you of any shred of personality, and take your Jedi Code and adjust it so that it is not really the Jedi Code anymore. They even change your pigmentation to a rather poor shade of durasteel, rather than the proper rusty red that inspires fear in targets. And of course, they refer to meatbags as "organics." Unacceptable."
  • Valve's writers seem to love these. From the Team Fortress 2 site, we have this:
    Some good questions. Good enough, anyway, that when we angrily confronted our writers with them, they got that look animals get when they're walking across a road in the middle of the night, headlights appear, and they realize they're about to lose their jobs.
  • In Touhou 12.8: Great Fairy Wars, the Fairy Trio gives you this lovely little trinket at the end of the C-1 route:
    Luna: We three together make one.
    Sunny: Even if a single arrow breaks if you bend it, if you bundle three together...
    Star: You'll run out of arrows three times as fast!
  • Valkyria Chronicles Largo loses his squad-mates when he gets a little incensed over the imperial blockade preventing vegetable shipments from getting through.
    Largo: Vegetables are like bombs packed tight with all kinds of important nutrients! Kids gotta eat 'em to grow up right... and the body's practically made of vegetables!
    Rosie: Which are like bombs...?


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