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  • Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning is supposed to be a satire of lore-driven horror games and was never intended to be taken seriously as such. However, it attracted people who did take it seriously to the point of creating backstories for the game, Completely Missing the Point.
  • Nominally-Objectivist dictator Andrew Ryan of BioShock is seen by some fans as a visionary who could do no wrong. No matter what your politics, you'd still have to ignore the fact that he went off the deep end and started murdering anyone who looked at him funny.
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  • BioShock Infinite is a heavy deconstruction/Take That! aimed at jingoistic Manifest Destiny ideology. This included an extraordinarily racist in-universe propaganda poster, which features George Washington holding up a liberty bell to ward off racist caricatures of basically everyone in the world that isn't a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, with the caption "For God and Country, It Is Our Holy Duty to Guard Against the Foreign Hordes". This was intended to be over-the-top jingoism, but a Tea Party group missed the satire and unironically shared the poster on their Facebook page. It's also popped up in use among white nationalists and neo-Nazis.
  • Handsome Jack in Borderlands 2, despite being portrayed as a completely reprehensible psycho, quickly became a fan favorite, and soon one of the most (if not the most) popular characters of the entire franchise with a massive fan following. Burch, writer for the game, wasn't happy about Jack taking the spotlight.
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  • In Call of Duty: Black Ops II, villain Raul Menendez has more than his fair share of fans. In-game, he's billed as the "hero of the 99%", and has inspired millions to follow his ideals. His exploits throughout the game (including rampaging through a burning homestead to save his sister, being able to shoot whomever he wants during the "Cordis Die" mission, and having a soft spot for David in 2025) has made at least one part of the fanbase believe he's a cross between Crazy Awesome and a Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds. Yet, he's still responsible for the deaths of millions of innocents prior to the events of the game (including, and up to, Hudson and Alex Mason), and is more than willing to destroy the U.S. just to avenge the deaths of two people.
  • Dragon Age:
    • Dragon Age II has a very unique situation; the third act deals with the Templars of Kirkwall turning their already abusive repression of the mages Up to Eleven, not helped at all by their commander being bonkers by an Artifact of Doom, and the desperate renegade mages turning to terrorism and/or Blood Magic because of it until there's literally open civil war in the streets. Neither side is portrayed as wholly in the right (the old "reason does not equal justification" argument) but rather as two opposing Well-Intentioned Extremist groups who each went completely over the edge. Never mind that the game let you choose to side with either one while being rather difficult to go for a somewhat more neutral stance, several message boards were bogged down with arguments over which side was right in trying to slaughter anyone even tangentially associated with the other side rather than whether or not either one was maybe going too far.
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    • After Dragon Age: Inquisition, Solas is revealed to have a plan to destroy the world. While he is an Anti-Villain you're supposed to sympathize with, you're clearly not supposed to agree with his plans. This does not stop some people from doing so, going so far as wishing the Inquisitor could help him, even though he himself regrets what he feels he must do and does not want them to go down that path. There actually is a dialog option to offer to join him (may require romance), but he turns it down.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • Oblivion:
      • Late into the game, the player must hunt down the Big Bad in his pocket dimension, Camoran's Paradise. At first, "Paradise" appears to be a beautiful Arcadian valley with flowers and meadows, but later, the player discovers that under this glade is a hellish cavern where Camoran, having made his fallen followers immortal, tortures traitors forever for betraying him. And if you're lucky enough to have been faithful to Camoran? He has monsters hunt you down and kill you, only for you to return and be hunted down again. The whole point of Camoran's Paradise is that it's meant to be a Crapsaccharine World that looks pleasant, but is really a horrible place to be. And yet, a lot of players can't look past the Scenery Porn and download Game Mods that let the player revisit Paradise and live there.
      • Lucien Lachance is a psychopathic killer who takes unabashed glee in murdering others, but one look at him and most fangirls bring out the leather pants. Partially justified in what you need to do in order to even meet him: joining the Dark Brotherhood. A clan of assassins catered by both the God of the Void, Sithis, and his most loyal subject, an ancient woman who sacrificed her six newborn sons for the glory of said god, and who relays their lord's will through her mummified corpse for only a few select ears to listen. Adhering to such a guild would assume that the player has an special mindset about killing, revenge (the main reason people contract their services), and about being a sword of vindication... But seeing how the fandom only harped about how the gear, perks and other rewards are worthy treading such a path, this concept probably flew over their heads.
    • Skyrim:
      • There seem to be a lot of people who don't understand that the civil war plotline is supposed to be a case of Gray and Grey Morality where each side has its flaws and its strengths, and that neither is supposed to be the "good guys" or the "bad guys". Depending on who you ask, either the Empire is a noble but misunderstood power that is only accepting the Thalmor's demands out of necessity and their control of Skyrim is necessary to maintain stability (when they basically banned the worship of the most important Nord god and the deified form of their own founder because they didn't want to keep fighting) while the Stormcloaks are a bunch of racist barbarians led by a power-hungry tyrant who only wants Skyrim for himself (when Ulfric has good reason to be offended by the treatment of the Nordic culture and wants Skyrim to be governed by his own people, not to mention the fact that he regrets the fact that he has to fight a war and expresses remorse for his enemies), or the Stormcloaks are justified freedom fighters nobly defending their rightful land against foreign oppression (when they do indeed tend to be xenophobic, and outright racist against dark elves), while the Empire is a ruthless totalitarian regime that wants to crush the civilisations of its conquered territories (when they're only banning the worship of Talos as a diplomatic move that not even they are entirely approving of, and when a more stable unified empire could potentially be safer in the face of another war with the elves.)

        And a good portion of people who don't entirely agree with the Empire or the Stormcloaks symphathize with the Forsworn instead, to the point of publicly expressing their disappointment that the game doesn't allow you to join them note . Yes, it is true that the Forsworn are trying to take back their homeland from foreign oppressors. No, you are not supposed to think the things they do in response to said foreign oppressors are in any way correct or justified.
      • The Stormcloaks, a bunch of Nord separatists, suffer from an in-universe version of this. The Nords of Skyrim are a deceptively civilised people, with an epic history, a longstanding bardic and poet tradition, a complex honour system and even some historical affinity for magic (the "clever craft"). You wouldn't know from the Stormcloaks, who push solely the Barbarian Hero/Proud Warrior Race Guy aspect of Nordic culture in their push for Skyrim's independence. Arguably a Deconstruction of Horny Vikings.
  • Fallout:
    • Fallout 3:
      • After the release of the game, the Enclave went from being the most generally hated faction in the wasteland, as they were in Fallout 2, to having a huge fandom, who consider them the best bet to lead the Capital Wasteland out of the darkness. This is partially explainable by the fact that Fallout 3 doesn't directly reference their origins as the insane and inbred descendants of the corrupt military and governmental elites who caused the great war, and tones down their genocidal inclinations from "standard operating procedure" to "providence of the somewhat crazed AI that's supposedly running the show". But, even then, the Enclave are still a bunch of brutal would-be tyrants and warlords who want to rule everything with an iron fist. It's just that the portrayal of the Capital Wasteland as, well, a wasteland full of raiders and super mutants makes some fans argue that their dominance would be a step up - a wasteland full of raiders in power armor is much more welcoming, after all.
      • The Brotherhood of Steel. Introduced as an isolationist band of arrogant xenophobes who used theoretically noble claims of "protecting humanity from the abusive potential of technology" as an excuse to bully and steal all the tech they could in the first game, a policy that had backfired on them by the second game. The third game introduced the Capital Wasteland Chapter, a branch of the Brotherhood that had explicitly broken away from the traditions and goals of their East Coast counterparts in order to serve as a power for good in the Capital Wasteland. They were so hugely popular that, despite the in-game characters explicitly saying they're a splinter-sect and not at all acting like the Brotherhood "should", newcomer fans were infuriated when the subsequent games showed more traditionalist sects, claiming that the New Vegas Chapter — and especially the "restructured" Brotherhood from Fallout 4 — were completely antithetical to what the Brotherhood "should" be like.
      • Even more frightening are the people who claim that the Brotherhood is the best choice for the Commonwealth. They're pretty much a fanatic, isolationist, autocratic cult of personality with access to the most raw firepower of any faction, besides maybe the NCR who, despite their position in the Capitol Wasteland only 10 years earlier, seems to be more interested in killing all Ghouls, Super Mutants, and Synths over helping the people of the Commonwealth. Granted, neither the Railroad nor the Institute helps the Commonwealth as a whole, but they don't really claim to.
      • There is a not-small part of the Fallout fandom that finds Liberty Prime and his cartoonishly anti-communist, jingoistic slogans deeply hilarious. On one hand, they're so far out there that they are funny on some level. On the other hand, some unironically quote him in support of US foreign policy (among other things).
    • Fallout: New Vegas:
      • The Legion has a huge following within the fandom despite being a group of enslaving, possibly homophobic, misogynistic, raping, pillaging thugs. Vulpes and Caesar, to a lesser extent, are some of the most popular characters in the fandom. It's not uncommon to see players' female couriers as part of the Legion either, even though it's made clear that women have no part in the Legion other than as slaves. Although many players do that because watching Legion members insult you at every opportunity, yet coming to you for help AND REWARDING YOU is hilarious in its own way, as well as surreptitiously subverting part of what the Legion stands for in the first place.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Some fans of Final Fantasy IV prefer Cecil as a Dark Knight and wish he stayed that way instead of becoming a Paladin. Statistically, Dark Knight Cecil is generally inferior to Paladin Cecil. Second, Cecil can be seen as no more badass as a Dark Knight (in fact, it's when he becomes a Paladin that he begins to gain confidence and retaliate against the enemy). Third, Evil Is Cool and Draco in Leather Pants don't even apply here since Cecil was never evil in the first place, just misguided. Finally, him staying as a Dark Knight is missing the point of the game; Cecil is The Atoner. The whole point is for him to change from what he was in his past and become a better person. This is not helped by Dissidia Final Fantasy where Cecil wields both classes cheerfully, without much regard to the fact that in Final Fantasy IV, Cecil hated being a Dark Knight with it being portrayed as a self-destructive path that led to misery and pain.
    • Final Fantasy VII:
      • Sephiroth is a megalomaniacal Big Bad who spends most of the game on a murderous killing spree (including famously and brutally slaying a beloved main character), pausing only to mock and psychologically manipulate Cloud. Because he does it with such style and is such a badass Pretty Boy, fans have turned him into a Draco in Leather Pants (see that entry for more). In the original game, Sephiroth was, in fact, fairly decent, if aloof and a bit cold, during the Nibelheim flashback, set before he goes insane, a portrayal retained in prequels; naturally, this just adds fuel to the Misaimed Fandom.
      • While not a popular reaction when the game first came out, it's common in recent years for people reviewing the game to say they like Cloud's ex-SOLDIER persona better than the real personality he adopts after he sorts out his delusions and decides to Be Himself. The original game tries to keep both persona charming through relatable flaws and Cloud's sense of humour (Deadpan Snarker or Self-Deprecation respectively), but a lot of Cloud's appeal is that he's darker than your average Ideal Hero JRPG protagonist; his prickly ex-SOLDIER personality is still a fairly unusual approach in the genre, while his earnest and dorky real personality is quite similar to previous and succeeding FF protagonists like Bartz, Locke and Tidus. Sequels, spinoffs and cameos which made the post-delusion Cloud incredibly depressed help to emphasise the sense of fun that the theatrically cool jerk had by comparison. So much for the entire moral of his character arc!
      • Some fans cared about Aerith's death only in relation to losing one of the team who they had invested a lot of time into levelling up or didn't care at all, which is missing that one of the game's themes is about sudden loss to someone you were meant to become personally attached to.
    • Fans who complain about the Squall and Rinoa romance of Final Fantasy VIII, saying that he should have got with Quistis when she offered the opportunity simply because she's Ms. Fanservice. Quistis's advances towards Squall were based entirely on her hopes of obtaining emotional support from a guy who's even more messed up than she is. As Squall points out, she's his teacher and it would be grossly unprofessional and unethical of her. Not to mention that it's later implied that their relationship would be akin to Brother–Sister Incest. Technically, they aren't, so this hasn't stopped some fans from pairing them.
    • Fans who hate Final Fantasy X will always point to a particular scene where Tidus is laughing obnoxiously, to the point where it's become emblematic of the game's problems in general. There exists a Game Mod which replaces all of Tidus's dialogue with the laughing, and the music with autotuned Tidus laughs. However, in the scene itself, it's clearly supposed to be in-character bad acting, with the other characters finding it embarrassing and complaining about it ("maybe you shouldn't laugh any more"). It got so bad that James Arnold Taylor, Tidus' English voice actor, made a YouTube video about it.
    • Lightning of Final Fantasy XIII has a lot of fans for her tough, take-no-prisoners attitude and her tendency to punch people who piss her off. They seem to have missed the part where treating everyone around her as incompetent and/or worthless and berating even her sister for "lying" about turning into a l'Cie (something that no sane person would ever lie about) is not good for her or anyone else. Also, punching people doesn't fix anything and doesn't even make her feel that much better, which is why she gets Character Development to be a better friend. (And no, that doesn't mean she's not tough anymore.)
    • The Garlean Empire in Final Fantasy XIV are hellbent on conquering all of Eorzea and are one of the antagonists the player faces. The empire had conquered several territories by the time 2.0 begins and are on a campaign to "save" Eorzea by slaughtering all beastmen so that they can't summon primals and have said primals suck out the planet's life force to sustain themselves. There are many fans that are Rooting for the Empire simply because they feel said empire is doing the right thing by getting rid of beastmen tribes and preventing internal conflict within the city states by having them join the Garleans. That being said, what most people seem to conveniently ignore is the Garlean Empire is known for killing anyone that refuses to join them in the war, turning people into slaves (and eventually force them to join their military ranks) if they do surrender, and are trying to use advanced technology to conquer the world, which is something the Allagan Empire tried in the past and failed at accomplishing. On top of this, the main story reveals that not all beastmen are mindless primal praying savages and they're even willing to help the spoken races at times.

      On a similar note, there's a Broken Base over whether or not healers should either stick to their role of healing or if they should heal and dish out damage while in battle. People who are for the latter love to point out the one scene in the Conjurer quest line where a young girl refuses to use other forms of conjury (namely attack spells like Stone and Areo) because she feels she's better off just healing rather than using other spells. While the Conjurer quests does encourage the player to learn how to use their offensive spells to aid others in battle, the context is lost on many people; the girl in the quests is told that she has to learn to accept the elementals' blessing in order to further her abilities as a conjurer because if she keeps trying to heal without said blessings, she would kill herself using her own life force to heal others (for gameplay purposes, actual healers in the game cannot suffer this).
    • Final Fantasy Tactics Advance is huge with this trope due to Marche's actions and motivations in the game. To put it simply, many fans agree to view him as an Anti-Villain. The main cast of kids are transported to a fantasy world where their desires and wishes come true (Ritz's hair is naturally red; Donned, Marche's brother, can walk again; and Mewt gets rule over the country as a royal prince whose now revived mother gives him anything he wants). Marche himself does have some fun in the fantasy world, but he knows that living in such a world only makes people run away from their problems rather than dealing with it and he doesn't need anything from the fantasy world to begin with. As Marche tries to find a way to get home, his friends turn against him; Mewt throws a temper tantrum over Marche's progress and demands more laws be made to stop him, even though this would make the citizens more upset, and he eventually puts a bounty om Marche's head. Ritz doesn't support Marche 100% and she eventually fights him simply because she doesn't want to go back home and deal with her natural white hair. Donned doesn't want to go back since it would mean not being able to walk again, which would give him a reasonable excuse, but he also hires clans to stop and possibly kill his own brother. It isn't until Marche finally gets through to them that they all realized what they had done and try to appreciate the things they did have back home that they glossed over. While the main idea behind the plot is somewhat questionable and the execution of the story being a bit too Anvilicious for most, that is most likely the reason why Final Fantasy Tactics A2 has a hero who is perfectly happy to have adventures and whose return home actually requires him to.

      There's also the beginning cutscene, which shows random townsfolk transforming into monsters when the world changes into Ivalice. Marche and his friends may have gotten what they always wanted, but not everyone else was so lucky.
  • Fire Emblem Awakening:
    • "Mad King" Gangrel is simply after War for Fun and Profit, not having any noble motives by the game's beginning. This is hammered repeatedly through the game, even by Gangrel himself after his Heel–Face Turn who says he lost sight of his original goal of uniting the continent against Valm after taking power. And yet many Gangrel fans say he was a Well-Intentioned Extremist out for justice against Plegia. This is despite the game showing Gangrel oppressing Plegians, his backstory making it clear the Ylisse/Grimleal war didn't affect him, and his Motive Rant revealing he wanted revenge on Plegia for his bad childhood.
    • A lot of fans see Tharja's Yandere attitute towards the Avatar as fetish material and it's a major reason why she's so popular. Her ending up as an abusive mother to her daughter Noire in the Bad Future was most likely intended as a Player Punch for players who didn't realise this, as well as a Deconstruction of what marrying a Yandere might eventually lead to. And yet there are a ton of fans who see the Avatar, Tharja and their children as a perfect happy family, despite Noire herself calling her mother out on her behavior and Tharja herself realizing that this isn't the way to go. There's no denying she does have a Hidden Heart of Gold, but that still doesn't mean her negative traits were meant to be appealing.
    • In the Summer Scramble DLC, Miriel has a conversation with Sumia where, due to the extreme heat, she hallucinates that Sumia is secretly a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing who's been faking being a Cute Clumsy Girl all along to lure in men. This is supposed to be a joke, but since Sumia has a massive amount of Die for Our Ship surrounding her, her haters use this conversation as legit canonical proof that she's really Evil All Along.
  • Fire Emblem Fates:
    • The game has two realms with very different sets of morals and very different world-buildings associated to them. Both are supposed to be seen as possessing pros and flaws which are incarnated in their Royal Families: despite their differences they all love the Avatar, who belongs to both groups, with all their hearts and will not react well to him or her choosing one over another or, in Revelation, not choosing a side. However, the fans have decided to latch on one Royal Family/Kingdom and bash the fuck out of the other, portraying their chosen "family" as poor dumb innocents whose flaws must be ignored or swept away to fetishize their suffering, while the other one is downgraded to Evil Incarnate and has its pros handwaved. The most rabid Nohr fans creepily reduce the genuinely tragic Nohrian Royal Family into helpless and fetishized victims who should never be called out for their own mistakes, while at the same time whining about the "horrible and privileged" Hoshidan Royal Family and deliberately ignoring how their supports and Takumi's fate in Conquest show that they're more dysfunctional than they seem; the most rabid Hoshido fans paint Nohrians as nothing more than card carrying villains blindly following an Avatar who is little more than a deluded fool so they can have some sort-of petty revenge at these privileged Hoshidans (at worst) or as complete idiots who also blindly follow an Avatar who is little more than a deluded fool so they can appease King Garon (at best).
  • Similar to Rorschach and Tyler Durden, some fans of God of War need to be frequently reminded that the world does not need men like Kratos. Or heck, that the world doesn't need anyone like Kratos.
  • Golden Sun gives us the Wham Line that Saturos and Menardi from the first game were actually doing what was right for their hometown and the world, and that they were right. While indeed, the cast of the first game actually take over their footsteps in going to light the rest of the lighthouses, it's very hard to blame them for thinking that Saturos and Menardi were pure evil and wanted to unseal alchemy for their own selfish purposes. Saturos and Menardi beat up Isaac and Garet when they were fourteen for simply overhearing them, regularly beat up people who got in their way, engaged in kidnapping, and attempted to kill them multiple times. Poor Communication Kills, yes - given the information that Isaac and Garet (As well as the players!) were given in the first game, it's hard to blame the first four for thinking Saturos and Menardi were evil.
  • Dr. Breen in Half-Life 2 has his fans who think he did the right thing by assuring the survival of humanity by surrendering, except there are hints that he staged the entire Resonance Cascade for personal gain, and he is the one who insisted on the highly specific test requirements. Some of his comments as you climb up the Citadel are actually quite reasonable, so it is easy to see how this gets started. Of course, this is discounting how he's a borderline Card-Carrying Villain who mind controls the populace with tainted water and by all accounts is still playing the fate of humanity for his own personal stake in the Combine empire.
  • Part of the point of I Wanna Be the Guy is to parody Platform Hell games and remind us that the good old days weren't so good in that its challenges could just as easily become cheap shots and unfair moves from the old arcades that did it to make you shove quarters down the slot. But some people loved it for being such a challenge and even made more games like it.
  • Fans of the Killzone games often complain of not being able to play the Helghast as protagonists, arguing that they were the true victims in the franchise. What they don't appear to realize is that this angle is a thinly veiled effort at playing up the Helghast analogy to Nazi Germany, of which had a legitimate claim to have been disproportionately punished after World War I, yet their actions in World War II hardly were justified.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
    • Fans who base support on a Sora and Namine romance due to the events of Chain of Memories, which ignores that all of the memories Sora had of Namine were fake, and the feelings he had toward her were actually his feelings for Kairi increased to obsessive levels by the Fake Memories so that he would become Namine's - and thus, Marluxia's - slave. Yeah, it wasn't supposed to be a good, loving thing.
    • An inversion of this trope happens with Xion in 358/2 days. A lot of people hate her because of her Mary Sue traits... when in actuality they are deconstructed even more horribly than the Tales Series does to many common tropes.
    • There are fans who seem to enjoy Ron the Death Eater-ing DiZ and Eraqus while simultaneously Draco in Leather Pants-ing their clearly far-worse enemies note  who caused said Jerkasseries to begin with. And no, not even DiZ's and Eraqus's eventual Heel Realizations (in contrast to said enemies' Lack of Empathy, of course) are enough to subvert this.
  • Canderous Ordo and the Mandalorians from Knights of the Old Republic are frequently beloved by fans for their warrior race culture and mentality... overlooking the fact that Canderous speaks casually and candidly of wrecking whole worlds during the Mandalorian Wars, and that the reason Revan took up his famous mask was due to the Mandalorians' xenocide of the Cathar.note 
  • Several people have said that they'd rather play the Shallow Parody of Mario Kart used in the commercial for Blur rather then the actual game. Apparently the game helped sales for Mario Kart too.
  • Certains fans of Metal Gear seem to think that the premise is "Solid Snake jumps in, kicks ass and chews bubblegum" despite that the series is a deconstruction of the typical action hero.
    • It was almost never made because higher-ups thought a game where you hide from enemies wasn't a game. Confronting an enemy head on is the quickest path to a Game Over, you're supposed to make sure they don't see you and are encouraged not to kill them, if you must engage them. And yet, you get fans who think running and gunning is a viable tactic.
    • Hideo Kojima was in fact so appalled by fans misinterpreting Solid Snake as a character that a large part of Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty is dedicated to attacking fans who played the first MGS as a power fantasy. It went so badly that the backlash to the above attack spawned a new series of Metal Gear games, with MGS2 being one of the most critically acclaimed games of 2001.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Cerberus is on the dark side of morally gray. They're essentially a well-funded Knight Templar terrorist organization out to ensure that humanity dominates the galaxy — often resorting to cruel biological experiments on unwilling human test subjects. In the sequel, they bring the protagonist Back from the Dead and provide Shepard with a Cool Ship to investigate the abduction of human colonists while the established Alliance and Citadel governments do little to nothing to assist. It's made perfectly clear that they're using you to further their own agenda, and their past atrocities do not go unmentioned. While moral ambiguity is present, many fans completely forget Cerberus' deplorable actions and instead find themselves wondering what everyone has against Cerberus. And as with Avatar's Col. Quaritch, some people go as far as to seem to actually agree with the "secure-human-dominance-at-any-cost" mindset.

      This is lampshaded, (possibly as a Take That, Audience!), with Conrad Verner revealing that he's joined Cerberus in 3. When asked what the hell he was thinking, given that they have only just attempted a failed coup of the Citadel, he explains that Cerberus are just misunderstood heroes who are working to protect humanity. After all, Shepard worked for them once, so they can't be all that bad, right? Cue facepalm as Shepard calmly explains that they worked with them to take down the Collectors and then severed all ties immediately afterwards.
    • It's less that Cerberus was using Shepard for their own ends, and more that they were the only organization with any real resources to recognize the threat of the Reapers, and the importance of Shepard to thwart them. They're also self-aware enough to realize that antagonizing or attempting to control Shepard will only cause problems - either Shepard will not be able to focus on the Collectors if s/he is too worried about the possibility of Cerberus stabbing them in the back, or a mind-controlled Shepard would be far less effective than a free one. 3 eventually reveals that the entirety of their interactions with Shepard in 2 were, essentially, bending over backward to ensure that Shepard felt as secure as possible, with as much support as possible. Even most of the employees they had working with Shepard had been hand-picked for their relative LACK of loyalty to Cerberus, on the grounds that a support team that Shepard could not trust would have been a useless support team. And of course, the characters who saw all this coming are the ones that receive fan ire.
    • At least part of the problem is that most of Cerberous' on-screen villainy before the third game comes from side missions in the first game that you have to go somewhat out of your way to even find, much less complete, and from the tie-in novels. Not to mention as well that the first game was much less successful than the second.
    • In Lair of the Shadow Broker, there exists a vid called Saren: A Hero Betrayed, which glorifies the turian Spectre who has not only been eagerly painted as the mastermind behind the geth attack on the Citadel, but is noted repeatedly to have been almost psychotically callous and ruthless even before he was indoctrinated by Sovereign. Anderson'snote  response was to get drunk to blot out the memories of seeing it.
    • In Kasumi's loyalty mission, a gold statue of Saren is actually seen as a desireable gift amongst the idle rich. Of course it is a party for crime lords and war profiteers...
  • Modern Warfare 2 has a few different categories of this, the most obvious being a large part of the player-base (and critics, for that matter) that at best doesn't notice the series has an anti-war message and at worst takes a positive view of war because of it. The worst are, by far, the players who root for General Shepherd. It's largely because the game's finale involves him both kicking ass in a crazy action-scene, as well as being where he explains his motivation and ultimate goal, both of which are easy to sympathize with. They are not, however, justification for a senior officer killing his own men in cold blood so that they won't discover he's manipulated another country to invade the United States, specifically with the goal of killing as many civilians as possible.
  • While Goth Boy for the MySims series has many fans, a few fans believe the creators got the goth subculture wrong. Except, if anything, Goth Boy is supposed to be an Affectionate Parody. The game has many Spooky Sims, each having their own unique personalities, so saying they got it wrong with just one character isn't fair. Plus the subculture is pretty chill and doesn't have too many requirements, so the games actually got it right. Also, a lot of the same people gave us the Goth Family
  • Although many of the Variants in Outlast have fans despite being disfigured psychopaths, the most stunning example of this in the Outlast fandom is that for Eddie Gluskin. Established in the game as criminally insane before the Morphogenic Engine experiments, Gluskin is an unrepentant (to the point of refusing to accept the deaths of his victims even when presented with photographic evidence) Serial Killer who was responsible for the brutal murder and dismemberment of a number of innocent women before being caught, having butchered them after choosing them to become his "brides" only to be rejected. Further unhinged by the procedures he underwent, Gluskin's psychosis leads to him fixating on the idea that he can "make" a perfect bride from one of the men caught in the asylum with him, which leads to him trying to brutally castrate anyone he catches in hopes of then using the resultant wound as a vagina to start a family with. A huge fandom absolutely loves him, taking his Faux Affably Evil presentation of being a romantic, 50s-esque family man (ignoring how that's a thin veneer over a psychotic Politically Incorrect Villain) and playing it absolutely straight, to the point of shipping him with the Whistleblower protagonist, a Happily Married straight man with two sons whom Eddie attempts to castrate with a table-saw and then tries to stab and hang for escaping. All because Eddie is handsome(ish) and feigns being romantic, and because he has a Dark and Troubled Past involving being raped by his father & uncle as a child. This particular Misaimed Fandom is so vocal that it absolutely incenses those who don't buy into it, especially since the game itself never portrays Eddie as being in the slightest sympathetic or anything other than a deranged murderer.
  • Pokémon:
    • Some feel that Team Plasma of Black and White are actually in the right. This is in spite of the entire point of the game being that they're not. Indeed, the games can be seen as Game Freak responding to criticisms similar to the ones Team Plasma make that have been made by actual people. It doesn't help that Plasma's figurehead, N legitimately believes that Pokémon abuse is a common thing. Or that, even if he's wrong about how common it is, it still happens, and the Pokémon it does happen to are all but defenseless as a result of the nature of Poké Balls. Or that instead of actually writing a convincing argument against the idea of owning Pokémon, the Plasma mooks are either openly, unapologetically abusing the Pokémon they "liberate" or having an "argument" with Plasma as The Strawmen and everyone else being, well...
    • In a sense, the popular "Nuzlocke" Self-Imposed Challenge is a case of this. Series creator Satoshi Tajiri has stated that the Non-Lethal K.O. nature of the battles is very much deliberate, as he believes it's unhealthy for kids to associate death with losing in a game. This didn't stop players from imposing Permadeath as a Self-Imposed Challenge.
    • Lavender Town in Red and Blue was probably intended to make the distinction between fainting in battle and actual death clear, as well as to teach kids to treat death with more respect. A large portion of the fandom now considers Lavender Town Creepy Awesome, fixating on its Nightmare Fuel aspects and creating Creepypasta that makes it far more disturbing than it actually is.
    • As mentioned on the Anime And Manga page, there's the ever-lasting debate between Red (the protagonist of first set of games), and Ash Ketchum (the anime's main protagonist). Generally, people side with Red, because he's cooler and smarter than the dumb-as-a-rock Ash. There's a few problems with this, though; first off, Ash has done a lot of things that Red has not, a lot of which are impressive in their own right. Second, Red and Ash are pretty much the same guy, with Ash being Red if Red had an actual personality. For that matter, there's the final flaw in the argument: with Red being the player's character, of course he can be more awesome than Ash, you can do whatever you want with him. Guess some of those fans are purposefully seeing him as Wish Fulfillment?... Regardless, Red fans see Red as perfect, completely ignoring that Ash isn't bad and straight-up rejecting these facts.
  • Many fans of the Portal games became huge fans of Cave Johnson after hearing recorded speeches from him in the "Old Aperture Labs" levels of Portal 2, causing them to perceive him as being Crazy Awesome. The reality is, though, we're supposed to think of Cave Johnson as a delusional, highly dangerous bungling incompetent who caused the deaths of untold numbers of people and bankrupted his own company in the pursuit of outlandish, crackpot ideas like using a portal-creating device as a shower curtain. The Crazy Awesomeness of Cave Johnson is so well-entrenched that things like the fact his famous "when life gives you lemons" speech are actually supposed to be the demented ravings of a lunatic imbecile who refuses to accept that he murdered people and ruined his company because of his own incompetence actually wound up on the Portal 2 Fridge subpage — they're considered that unobvious.
  • Shin Megami Tensei: Persona:
    • Persona 3:
      • Yukari Takeba's actions in The Answer are seen by many fans as proof she was a horrible Bitch in Sheep's Clothing all along. While its true her actions are meant to be viewed as wrong, the game makes it clear she's irrational over the loss of someone extremely close to her, and dealing with personal loss is a major theme of the game. When she eventually opens up to her friends about it, they're able to help her through it and she comes out a better person. Her detractors ignore her epiphany and consider her a nothing more than a cruel, jealous Alpha Bitch, and downplay her moments of niceness during the main story.

        Ironically, the same people who insist that Yukari was stupid and wrong for wanting to resurrect the Protagonist are the same ones clamoring for the Protagonist to be added to the roster of Persona 4: Arena, despite said game existing within the canon universe of Persona 3 and Persona 4 ... and thus demanding the exact same thing as Yukari did in The Answer.
      • The drama surrounding the October 4th incident. In canon, Shinjiro gives his life to save Ken, someone he knew hated him after he accidentally caused the death of Ken's mother, from Takaya. This is meant to be a poignant and touching Heroic Sacrifice, and if the player is supposed to hate anyone for this, it's Takaya. However, since Shinjiro is an Ensemble Dark Horse and Ken is The Scrappy, fans hold Ken responsible for Shinjiro's death. Granted, Ken did call Shinjiro to the spot where his mother was murdered with the intent of killing him, but not only did he not kill Shinjiro, he also deeply regretted desiring revenge. It got so bad that official spinoffs and adaptations had to undertake major damage control and go drastically out of their way to make Ken more sympathetic, but he'll still Never Live It Down.
    • Persona 4:
      • Adachi, a serial-killing, misogynist, "police dick" (no, seriously, that's a canon title) whose attitude towards women is basically summed up in his fandom-popular phrase from Persona 4 (which he never actually said in that game), "whores and bitches". For some reason though, there's a vast majority of the fanbase who actually considers him "not that bad". Never mind the fact that he's completely sexist, he's also a complete psychopath, who cannot be described in any other way then "fucked in the head". Of course, this isn't helped by the fact there's an ending in the game where the player character can pick to act as Adachi's accomplice. Again, this ending wasn't supposed to feel rewarding though. It's specially designed to be a "you're a screwed up person" ending. The writers explicitly stated numerous times that the entire idea of Adachi was to design someone the player would end up loathing, who could be considered without any real question or debate as being a "bad guy", who everyone and their dog wouldn't like by the end of the game, especially to be in contrast with Persona 3, where some of the real villains have some arguably good intentions. Adachi, however, was designed to be completely evil, with next to no real redeeming factors left by the end of the game.
      • The two characters with some gender/sexuality quirks, Kanji Tatsumi and Naoto Shirogane, have been struck with a considerable amount of this. Naoto's problem is covered above, but with Kanji, the fandom has a tendency to fixate on Kanji's ambiguous sexuality as the be-all, end-all of his problems, when the game makes it clear that, as much as his sexuality is a part of his problems with himself, his real problem is with acceptance of his whole personality — especially his "unmanly" hobbies and interests — both from himself and from other people. Essentially, the fans flanderize him into "the token Gay Guy", when his actual story is how he simply isn't sure how to view himself in relation to Japan's strict viewpoints on gender roles.

        Extra Credits gets on on this - in their sexual diversity episode, they praise Atlus for writing a gay character and praise Kanji because a tough guy with a feminine side who is gay (And comes to terms about it) makes him different than the other tough guys with feminine sides in their eyes. The bit about the acceptance of his personality is rarely mentioned at all, and they even bring up Naoto as an example in this episode but don't go in because they feel it would be too spoilerific.
      • Kanji is often touted as proof that Japan is perfectly accepting of homosexuality, as well as some obscure Yaoi game or the presence of the Yaoi Fangirl trope. Except that many instances of yaoi is seen as niche at best in Japan, the genre itself is aimed at straight people - and Japan is actually not nearly as LGBT-friendly as many people believe it to be. In fact a lot of Kanji's issues stem from how Japanese society rejects him for being Ambiguously Gay, Yosuke's teasing him about it is a Berserk Button for Kanji, and in addition to having a crush on Naoto, also shows interest in Yukiko early on.
    • Persona 5
      • The online fandom of the Phantom Thieves serves as an In-Universe example. When the fan site is first put up, the requests for the protagonists to solve are mostly personal problems and small in scale compared to what they wanted, which is people who are well-respected by society and getting away with their crimes because of their status and power. As they gain more popularity, and make it clearer to the public that their goal is to target societal corruption, the fandom is still misaimed as they become more focused on bloodshed, as shown when they congratulate the Thieves for killing Kunizaku Okumura during a live broadcast, despite his death being a set up by The Conspiracy, then start demanding the Thieves be killed as retribution. The Phantom Thieves eventually realize after Okumura's death that their fandom doesn't care about their goal of reforming society.
      • One portion of the Western fandom believes that the game should have offered an option to execute the targets. This goes in complete contrast to their modus operandi to be Phantom Thieves of Hearts, meaning they steal the heart of their target and force them to admit and atone for their sins, and that them killing any target would turn them into assassins and into nothing better than the role The Dragon has in the game. They completely ignore the fact that Ann was close to killing Kamoshida's shadow, but when his shadow actually offered her to kill him, she chose to not go through with it. She wanted Kamoshida to admit his crimes in person, and having him live with his heroic reputation as an Olympic gold medalist ruined, and everyone know what a horrible person he really is. And given the thieves' reactions to Okumura dying because his shadow was killed, it's clear that this is not the result they would've wanted to begin with.
      • Another portion of the Western fandom was very disappointed in there not being a Gay Option for Joker to have as his romantic partner, citing this to be a horribly overlooked aspect of 'going against society's norm'. The problem here lies in the fact that the game's social commentary was not about subverting society's views in that aspect. The plot was always about the apathy and lethargy of society, and society as a whole deciding that those in power can get away with anything for no reason other than their connections and status, and overall conforming more to what has already been established (bad as it may be), than to try to shake things up and attempt to improve. Part of this could be Values Dissonance, as Japanese society is a lot more focused on bowing to those in higher positions than the western countries do.
  • Silent Hill 2 gives us the infamous Pyramid Head and the Bubblehead nurses. Pyramid Head is the physical manifestation of James' guilt and repressed sexual desire, as evidenced by his male physique in contrast to the other monsters. Pyramid Head terrorizes both James and the other monsters, the latter through sexualized violence. The Bubblehead nurses also represent James' sexual frustration by being both "attractive" yet very repulsive. These two monsters are often taken out of the context of the game where fans legitimately find them attractive and often make a joke of Pyramid Head's raping habits, never mind rape is a heinous act in real life.
  • Spec Ops: The Line is well-loved by fans of classic shooters (Doom, Quake, et cetera) and non-military shooters as they see the game as an attack on the modern military genre and its fans, though lead writer Walt Williams has stated that is not the case, and that his actual intention was to make people question why they played shooters to begin with.
  • Super Smash Bros. added Dark Pit as a playable character. He's both liked and disliked for a myriad of reasons, but a couple fall under this trope:
    • People against his inclusion deride him for being a Darker and Edgier version of Pit, claiming he's a sad attempt at trying to create a "cool" character by making a dark counterpart to the cheerful Pit.
    • Some people for him like him for those same reasons, thinking he legitimately is cooler, liking the darker color scheme and more threatening voice and personality.
    • But anyone who's actually played Kid Icarus: Uprising knows exactly what Dark Pit is: a parody of Darker and Edgier characters, especially "dark" counterparts to characters, which is why he has such an uninspired name. He picks fights with Pit for no real reason, and is constantly made fun of for his uncaring attitude, and it's made abundantly clear he's as much as a dork as Pit is despite supposedly being a "dark" version of Pit, if not more so for trying so hard to act like he's better than Pit is. Of course, Smash makes no attempt to illustrate this, being a fighting game where characters spend more time jumping around than talking.
    • Come Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, despite Dark Pit being used as an example of an Echo Fighter, the fandom made ideas for Echoes that would take a lot more work.
  • Tales Series:
    • Some people criticize the games for being "Cliche" and play a lot of the tropes absolutely straight. While the Cliché Storm trope may not be too far from the truth of a few games, part of the reason that the games have a fanbase is that even from the start, the Tales Series has been known as a Deconstructor Fleet - starting almost every game as an absolute Cliché Storm, and then starting to turn around deconstructing all the cliches that they just played totally straight.
    • For Tales of the Abyss there's quite a sizeable amount of people that got turned away from the game for having an unlikeable protagonist in Luke. The problem here is that you're not supposed to like him. He's a brat and the game spares no expense in letting you know it and also showing how much he irks the other characters. He goes through character development at a turning point where almost nobody in the game has any sort of sympathy left for him and resolves to become a better person, losing basically every one of his traits that many players found bothersome. Of course, it's hard to know if a certain character is static or dynamic at first glance, so many players end up missing out on this, and even if you did know, you still have to put up with an intolerable character for some hours.

      On the flipside, there are many fans that actually played through the game and heavily sympathize with Asch, and like him more or even state that he deserved to live more than Luke did. The problem is that Luke is intended to be seen as more worthy, as while Asch also got the short end of the stick, he also heavily contrasts Luke by being a static character that does not undergo character development. He remains an unapologetic asshole through and through, and even some of his more well intended actions that people may like Asch for are the same things that the game goes at length to explain are not good ideas- at least when it's Luke attempting it.
    • Tales of Vesperia: The "Yuri is evil" crowd. Yuri would have loved nothing more than for Flynn's methods to work, and he's clearly shown trying to let the system do its job. The result? A sadistic high up aristocrat who partakes in recreational torture and murder promptly gets let off with a slap on the wrist, since the ones who were judging him had no desire to lock up and/or execute one of their own. The implications were that he would basically be back to where he was before eventually, except maybe a little more in the background. If Yuri had let him go, he might have done so on the heads of innocent civilians. Likewise with his later kill, where it WOULD have been on the heads of innocent civilians if he hadn't done what he did. In that government, the law was truly the tool of those that held power, and those that held power weren't the nicest people. Yuri was anything but evil, or in the wrong.
      • Vesperia is more more complicated than that. The game's full Japanese title includes the subtitle "To Enforce 'Justice,'" and the game constantly asks whether any given character's methods of enforcing that "Justice" are right. Yuri's murders aren't exactly presented in a kindly light. He's hardly evil, but he didn't handle the situation well. That's the point- Flynn's government is crippled and ineffectual due to outer interests, but Yuri's succumbing to vigilantism. He's essentially taking his first steps on the way to taking Duke's brutal "Take the Law Into My Own Hands and Kill Anyone I See As Evil" path. Neither form of "Justice" is supported in the games, with the game's proposed correct path being represented by the idea of mutual cooperation.
  • Team Fortress 2 has an in-game example with the Soldier's speech about Sun Tsu, which begins with the quote "If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight!" As is mentioned in the Literature section, Sun Tsu advocated only fighting as a last resort; in fact, the original quote, in context, is something along the lines of "If fighting is sure to result in victory, then, no matter what is said by the political leaders, you must fight; and, if fighting is sure to result in defeat, then no matter what is said by the same political leaders, you must not fight. It goes without saying that Soldier himself would flip out at the mere suggestion there exists a time where you shouldn't fight.
  • There is an article called Guardians of the Threshold published by the Florida Department of Corrections outlining the ideals a responsible correctional officer should live by. The list they give of these ideals is copied from the Guardian's virtues as described in Ultima Underworld II. The only problem with this? The Guardian is a bad guy. His virtues are supposed to be tools of oppression.
  • Undertale:
    • The game has the No Mercy path where in order to see the bad ending, you have to spare not a single soul and slaughter as many mooks as possible while killing every single boss monster as well. By going on this path, you encounter two extremely difficult fights that are almost unfair to go against and the bad ending has the entire world destroyed, leaving behind a black void. Even if you opt to go for a reset and try to make everything better again by going for the Golden Ending, said ending is corrupted due to your actions from the bad ending and it follows you no matter how many times you reset (unless you fiddle with the game's files to override it). Many players who had done the No Mercy path in their first playthrough or later complain how unrewarding the bad ending path is due to the difficult bosses and how one shouldn't be punished for simply getting the bad ending. The point behind the bad ending and future playthroughs being tainted is to show the player that treating the game nothing more than just a game and thinking they can be above consequences while they toy with the characters in the game will bite them in the ass no matter much they think they're above it all. The whole idea is that you shouldn't be rewarded for being a bad person and the trials for being fully evil will be just as difficult as being completely good. The Fallen Child in the end of the No Mercy run is basically the desires of the player incarnate where they want more power, get stronger, and move on to the next game once they done everything in the current game.
    • Several fans enjoyed the No Mercy route despite having the intention of being unsatisfying. This largely comes from challenge-focused gamers, seeing as the path throws two of the game's hardest bosses even when said bosses were part of punishing the player for following through the path. On the other side, there's story-focused fans who like how the path shows some of the characters at their best or see it as a good tragic story on its own. Relatedly, Sans is also one of, if not the most popular character in the game, but a lot of his popularity stems from his actions and lines exclusive to the No Mercy route, especially the boss fight he throws the player into at the end.
    • Some fans have been known to push other players, mainly Let's Players, into doing a Pacifist Run on their first playthroughs, sometimes using the game's taglinenote  as evidence that this is what you "should normally" do. In truth, the game is meant to be played blind, and the whole point of the morality system is to catch unsuspecting players off guard with the reveal that their own, personal choices in the game have consequences. It comes a bit harder to give the message when a player avoids committing negative actions not because it was their natural inclination, but because other people told them to in advance.
  • Lezard Valeth from Valkyrie Profile was written to be as repulsive as possible, a sexually deviant stalker and violator of natural laws; like Harry Potter grown up terribly, terribly wrong. Some fans, however, like to pair him with Lenneth, the heroine of the first game. The blame/credit probably on the shoulders of his highly talented (and sexy-sounding) English voice actor. In the original Japanese version, he's more of a standard deep-voiced villain (although also having a sexy voice for a deep-voiced one).
  • Inverted in the 2005 Rockstar video game adaptation of The Warriors. The game's depiction (which, naturally, takes many of its cues from the similar Grand Theft Auto) is arguably a more accurate rendering of Sol Yurick's original characters than the popular 1979 film based on the novel on which the game is ostensibly more directly based. Whereas in the movie the young hoodlums (except, of course, for Ajax, and even he is up to debate) come off at worst as misguided, put-upon orphans, and at best as Loveable Rogues, in the game, these same characters truly are criminals: ruthlessly pragmatic, frighteningly power-hungry, and have no qualms about mugging the innocent and outright murdering the guilty. (The game does conclude pretty much the same way the movie does, though, so maybe this is a straight example after all.)
  • The Witcher, the second in the game in particular, has a rapidly developing misaimed fandom. It's a tricky case due to its Grey and Gray Morality clouding things, the game does expect you to make rather murky moral decisions, and no side is all good, or all bad. But overall, there is a clear message that bigots are bad. The elvish rebels methods are criticized in the game, but it is made clear that the fact that they are discriminated against is not cool, and joining the non-humans is given as much weight as joining the pro-human factions. In fact, you get the best ending if you join Iorveth, the Scoia'tael leader. It is the only way to lift the curse on Saskia, the (literal) dragon. Your other options are leaving her impaled on a tree, but alive, or kill her. Yet many fans agree with the strawman arguments put forth by the human characters in the game, and take the stance that the humans are always right by virtue of them being human (similar to Avatar's misaimed fandom), and should always take precedence over the non-humans in the game. They have also begun to drag real life prejudices in the game, by complaining when the developers do things to cater to fans who belong to a minority group, such as replacing textures on some brothel carpets which could offend some Muslims, or vehemently arguing against the inclusion of any form of homosexuality in the game, because apparently minorities should never be considered, despite the clear message saying otherwise in the game itself.
    • If you know anything about elves in the later Witcher books (sadly not translated into English), the treatment of elves does become a bit more of a moral grey area. It is also worth noting that not choosing Yorveth in the second game prevents Flotsam from turning into a giant bloodbath.
  • World of Warcraft:
    • The original Leeroy Jenkins video was, despite being a staged over-the-top reconstruction of a real event, more a parody of "nerd guilds" with their excessive and sometimes nonsensical planningnote than a parody of Leeroy's player archetype.
    • Some quests are clearly meant to be evil but players view these actions as justified. Good examples include the quest "The Broken Front", all Royal Apothecary quests and "It Was The Orcs, Honest!"
    • Some players sympathize with Malygos and his plans to curtail the use of magic without realizing that they would kill many people and put the world in danger.
    • Fans of Sylvanas Windrunner also try to tout her as a good guy, often ignoring canon aspects and deeds of her character in order to make it work, or pinning the blame on someone else.


Example of: