Follow TV Tropes


Reality Is Unrealistic / Video Games

Go To

  • The Blood Elf male models in World of Warcraft are perhaps the most realistically proportioned models in the entire game. Almost everyone's thoughts on the model for the Blood Elf Males? That they look very scrawny. (Females are obviously intended to be this way, they look like Courtney Yates during China.) Well of course humans are gonna look ultra-thin when you put them next to the bulky Orcs and Draenei and the chunky Tauren...
  • Advertisement:
  • A very common gripe among some EVE Online players is that the game's colourful background nebulae are massively over the top because the sky should just be black with twinkly bits, right? In reality, space is full of all sorts of spectacular features, it's just that these are too dimly lit for the human eye to see unaided, especially if you live in an urbanized area with lots of light pollution.
  • On most hand grenades, pulling the pin is not what makes them go boom; the pin is just a final safety catch for the lever, which when released sets off the time-delayed detonator. Also, trying to pull the pin with your teeth is usually a good way to break a tooth. You cannot put the pin back in a grenade (or put in a replacement) if the lever (the part the pin was holding in the first place) has already been released. Even if you try to replace the handle, the fuse has started. If the fuse hasn't started, if the lever hasn’t moved, you might be able to make the grenade 'safe' again by putting the pin back. But don't risk your life on it. Regarding modern grenades, American and other NATO military instructors have drilled recruits to hold the grenade with the thumb of the throwing hand over the "spoon" (detonator lever), preventing the lever from releasing until the grenade is thrown and allowing pin reinsertion if the combat situation changes. In photo or video footage, this makes the action of the lever non-obvious, leading to the misconception that pulling the pin by itself is what makes the grenade go boom. "Cooking" grenades has also been discouraged, promoting instead alternative practices of throwing in a higher arc or "banking" off of a hard object for a longer delay.
    • Notable in First Person Shooters where holding a grenade too long will result in the player blowing themselves up or the grenade exploding as soon as it leaves the player's hand. Apparently, FPS heroes don't know how to handle grenades properly. May be justified in that in FPS games, the hero uses an unsafe (but sometimes effective) practice of "cooking" the grenade. This is explicitly how grenades work in Killzone 2. There's even a series of lights that tells you how long before you overcook, so to speak.
    • Advertisement:
    • This is because, in addition to the tense nature of combat fouling up a person's perception of the passage of time, grenade fuses are not precise timing mechanisms, and the delay between releasing the detonator lever and the actual explosion can vary by as much as 2-3 seconds from one grenade to the next, even if both grenades are the exact same model.
      • A related matter in most games that actively encourage cooking grenades, such as Return to Castle Wolfenstein, is that they will invariably give the grenades a three-second fuse. Ignoring the variance issue above, the standard time on a modern grenade's fuse is 5 seconds, but that doesn't fit very well with the love affair the video game industry has with the Rule of Three.
    • One game that averts this is Far Cry 3. When your character pulls the pin, he allows the spoon to fly off at the same time if he holds onto it. Of course, you still need to gain the ability to cook the grenade before the game fully catches up with what's going on there, but it's a nice touch.
    • Advertisement:
    • America's Army 3 requires you to push a separate button to release the spoon and start cooking the grenade. Unless you do that, you can hold the grenade with the pin out as long as you want.
    • The above also applies to Red Orchestra 2 and its expansion Rising Storm.
    • Ballistic Weapons has your character put the pin back into a grenade when switching from it to another weapon, and like the above, you have to press a different key to cook the grenade.
    • This is invoked in one of the self-kill messages in Quake: If you blow yourself up with a grenade launcher, it will say "Player tried to put the pin back in".
    • Grenades were invented in China while Europe was in the Dark Ages and saw action in Europe before the American Revolution, making them Older Than Print. It is rare that a game set in those times which even acknowledges the existence of these weapons, Total War: Shogun 2 and Mount & Blade being exceptions.
  • A character designer for God of War details his encounters with this trope in some making-of bonus material, as the rest of the dev team would say authentic Ancient Greek costumes and armor were "not Greek enough," and were only satisfied with the pop-culture versions of Ancient Greek garb. The devs realized that the general public was unlikely to have researched ancient Greek fashion, thus becoming a minor case of Pandering to the Base.
  • Many games with a historical setting involving Byzantium have the nation represented with various tones of purple or violet, particularly royal purple or the so-called byzantine purple. Examples are the Total War, Europa Universalis or Civilization series. Actually, Byzantine emperors wore Tyrian Purple, as the Romans did, which has a shade of a more reddish tone, to the point it is sometimes called tyrian red. However, the former colours are so deeply associated with Byzantium that changing the colour palette to a more realistic tone often attracts complaints. Even if the "byzantium" colour was actually synthetized first in the XX century!
    • It should be also noted that the Byzantines never referred to themselves as such, always calling theirs as the (Eastern) Roman Empire. Byzantium was never called as such during the Middle Ages, being Nova Roma (New Rome) or Constantinople. The name Byzantium only referred to the pre-Christian Greek town before emperor Constantine refounded the city in 330 AD. The term byzantine was first used by German and French scholars in the XVII century, many years after the fall of Constantinople, being also a derogatory term, and it is today radicated in common knowledge outside scholar debate. However, many times players complained if anything different from Byzantium was used in games.
  • On the forums of the America's Army game, a game created by the U.S. Army, people often complain that certain aspects about the game are less realistic than other games. The actual case is inevitably that America's Army is the first game to get that particular aspect right and the people aren't used to that.
    • Common examples of what uninformed posters complain about are what weapons the Army uses (specifically the lack of expected weapons), the slow speed of the reloading animations, the dramatic stun effects of flashbangs, the frequency (if not existence) of weapon jams, the slow movement and gameplay speed, the lack of some ridiculous practices, and other things commonly misrepresented by other games. You know a media-caused misconception is ingrained firmly when people think they understand something about combat better than the actual Army. The more frequent than expected weapons jams in America's Army's current weapon of choice are frustrating professionals in real life as well.
    • On the subject of the M16, most people would express absolute disbelief at any report or video that the M4/M16 can indeed take quite a bit of abuse like sand and dust due to the ingrained belief that the tiniest bit of debris will jam it. It was less reliable compared to the AK-47/Type 56 — but what isn't? The infamy is inherited from the early versions used in The Vietnam War: due to machinations with the hasty release and logistics they failed soldiers who weren't taught or equipped to properly maintain them. The manufacturer worked out kinks, but the reputation remains soiled. Hence the "Good Guns, Bad Guns" Product Placement campaign.
  • Later Call of Duty games are hit with a form of this as well. The most notable example relates to the weapons the games classify as light machine guns: reloading the belt-fed ones takes the pattern of first pulling back the gun's charging handle, then replacing the ammo box as normal. Since this is the exact opposite pattern from every other type of gun in the game, and does not change to account for whether the previous belt still had bullets in it like the others usually do, a lot of people seem to get the idea that the machine guns in these games are reloaded "incorrectly", and other developers go out of their way to meet those expectations - even the guys replacing the original developers for Modern Warfare 3. In reality, every belt-fed gun in Call of Duty that actually requires reloading is an open-bolt design - for most of the ones featured in the series, it would be physically impossible to insert the first round of a new belt if the bolt remained closed after going through an ammo belt.note  It's a sad truth that Call of Duty legitimately gets so many things wrong that, on the occasions like this where they actually get it right, everyone believes it's a mistake anywaynote .
    • Speaking of Call of Duty, there is one mission in Call of Duty: Black Ops II wherein you get to pilot a fighter aircraft which has the ability to land and take off vertically, right in the middle of a street intersection, with no runways needed. This part of the campaign was heavily featured in the game's trailers, and some of the viewers were surprisingly extremely vocal about it, saying it was "unrealistic", or that Activision just made it up because the game is set in the future and/or just to make the game look cool. They probably haven't seen or heard yet of the F-35B Lightning II, which was a result of the "Joint Strike Fighter" program. Put simply, the F-35 is a fighter plane that was designed to have the ability to take off and land vertically as its main feature. Said aircraft was designed & has existed for years now and has passed various extensive testing, but was only just declared 'combat ready' a few years after the game released. It's also a no-brainer that the VTOL fighter aircraft in Black Ops II was heavily inspired by the F-35.
    • Likewise for the following Call of Duty: Ghosts, at least one reviewer stated that being able to do 40+ mph in a tank was "probably currently impossible". In reality, modern main battle tanks have been able to reach speeds as fast as this for some time now (the Abrams in particular having entered service in 1980, a full 33 years before Ghosts came out); tanks go slowly as we're used to mostly to ensure the safety of the crew and that the tank itself can actually get to where it's going without breaking down.
    • Perhaps the biggest example of this in the franchise is Call of Duty: WWII. The biggest complaint of being able to play as a black woman for the Nazis is actually only half-wrong; a lack of black people in Germany at the time meant the Nazis, while obviously still discriminating against them, passed no racial policies specifically against them joining the Wehrmacht, so they'd accept the men (and only the men) if they signed on. This likewise applies to some of the weapons they added in later on in the game's life; bar the likely-a-hoax SDK, no weapon is inherently fictional, though they are prototypes or failed projects or just weapons of extreme obscuritynote .
  • Halo pulls an interesting version of this - only Spartans can go Guns Akimbonote . Lampshaded by a UNSC marine:
    "I've seen a Spartan use two SMGs at once, tearing the crap out of the little ones; sending the big ones down in bloody heaps. But I guess that's what ya gotta be to pull it off: an action-movie hero or a seven-foot-tall walking tank..."
    • This can be seen in the original version of Halo 2, and the Anniversary edition. In the original game, Miranda goes Guns Akimbo with SMGs spraying them at the Arbiter. In the remaster, she's only using one, she's got it braced into her shoulder, she's leaning into the weapon, aiming down the sights, and firing in short controlled bursts. Like someone who's spent a solid part of her career handling firearms realistically would. Funnily enough, if you watch closely, you'll notice that she actually scores a couple of hits, however The Arbiters shield No-Sell the few rounds that do hit.
  • People have complained that Vanille's Australian accent in the dub of Final Fantasy XIII is fake sounding and doesn't sound Australian. Her voice actress, Georgia Van Cuylenburg, is actually from Australia. To Australians, though, she sounds like a surfer chick.
  • Similarly, Leliana from Dragon Age: Origins gets flak because her Orlesian accent sounds fake (Orlais transparently being Dragon Age's version of France). Her voice actress is, of course, French. Marjolanne, another character with an Orlesian accent, actually is voiced by Kath Soucie, who is not French.
  • To make the skin textures for the Infected in Left 4 Dead, the Valve team compiled a book of gruesome skin disorders. Then they decided it was just so disgusting and over-the-top that they never looked at it again, and used things like fibreglass and cardboard instead.
  • Wolfire Games did a blog post about research they did for a sequel to Lugaru. Many of the picture subtitles fit this trope.
  • The developer commentary to Portal 2 reveals that an important detail of the Final Boss fight very nearly fell victim to this. Playtesters expected portals fired by the Handheld Portal Device to appear instantly and were confused when an obvious Chekhov's Gun failed to go off as expected due to speed-of-light lag. After toying with ignoring the speed of light, Valve's final solution was to constrain the player's view so they cannot easily look away from the intended target, and once the final shot is fired, to lock the game into cutscene mode. It works perfectly.
  • In Ōkami, when Amaterasu uses Golden Fury, she hikes her leg up in a way that most people associate with male dogs. This confuses some people. In real life, whether a wolf hikes its leg or not is dependent on the wolf's position in the pack hierarchy, not its gender. Alpha wolves raise their leg when marking/urinating and subservient wolves squat down to urinate. Some female dogs hike their leg, too.
  • Bully actually does have some events like what goes on in the game happen in real life. But don't worry, in Real Life, if half of the stuff that goes on in Bullworth happened in a single year, it'd get closed down by the end... probably before.
  • In The Elder Scrolls series, there is serious debate regarding to the Argonians being depicted as plantigrade (walking with the foot flat against the ground) or depicted as digitgrade (walking on the toes with the heel raised). Many fan complaints revolve around their plantigrade depictions as being "unrealistic". That said, true realism also depends on what type of reptile Argonians are actually based on. Squamatas (which include lizards) and testudines (turtles, tortoises) have plantigrade feet, but most archosaur reptiles (dinosaurs, crocodilians, birds) have digitigrade feet. According to some interpretations of the series' lore, the Argonians originally were just lizards raised to sapience and humanoid forms by the Hist, ancient and sentient trees the Argonians worship. In this case, having them walk plantigrade is the most realistic. However, the Argonians have also been underoing an ongoing (justified) Evolutionary Retcon throughout the series. In Morrowind, their most lizard-like (specifically iguana-like) appearance, they walk digitgrade, which is unrealistic. Through Oblivion and Skyrim, their appearance changes, making them look more aggressive, predatory, and (theropod) dinosaur-like. However, they are also changed to walk plantigrade, which for theropod dinosaurs, is unrealistic.
  • In Dead Island, the Australian character Purna is voiced by an Australian actress, Peta Johnson. Despite this, one of the most frequent criticisms of Johnson's performance is that her accent sounds fake.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Most gamers playing The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword don't know that the design of the goofy-looking Loftwings the citizens of Skyloft ride on are based on real (though smaller in reality, but still quite large) birds called Shoebill storks, native to Sudan.
    • Many fans believe that Sheik's body type in the original Ocarina of Time (not the remake, which changed it a bit) is too masculine looking for her to only be a Sweet Polly Oliver. However, one fan-site did an analysis on this issue and came to the conclusion that Sheik's physique is plausible. Many athletic women have that shape.
    • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild had some people less enthused with the game after hearing how great it was express disbelief that Hyrule would be so green since it's supposed to be set After the End. Actually, from what we know, this is fairly realistic - and Hyrule doesn't even have anything to pollute the environment, so naturally it should look fairly green.
  • Some younger Guitar Hero fans thought Slash was a fictional person created just for the game.
  • Racing games with licensed cars very often feature stereotypical handling and performance. Whenever a Porsche shows up in a racing game you can bet it will oversteer and be hard to control, even though you are driving a modern Porsche with four wheel drive and 45-55 weight balance, and not a '76 Turbo. The Boxster and Cayman will be very light and have a low top speed because they kind of look like something Lotus would make, even though the only reason the real life Cayman does not outperform the equivalent 911 is because its drivetrain was intentionally downgraded; a tuned Cayman should blow the doors off a comparable 911. Lotus itself always ends up providing the slowest car with the best acceleration and handling, even if said car is the Esprit V8 which is pretty much a mid engined muscle car in real life. The perennial Aston Martin in Need for Speed always handles like a boat, even the DBR9 version which is a race spec build and should handle like any other GT1 formula sportscar. Same goes for the BMW M3R and for the same reason. The Nissan GTR is often represented as a drift car with a low top speed, probably because it looks like an upgraded Skyline. And whenever you see a modern four door car in the lineup, usually the Audi RS4 or a Maserati, it will have the handling and ramming power of a semi.
  • Some felt that Cole Phelps of L.A. Noire being charged for adultery as a crime was over the top, when in reality, adultery was indeed a crime in 1940's America.
  • Anivia in League of Legends and Articuno of Pokémon are in fact based off of the Simurgh, Persian bird of mythology. Yes, the cyrophoenix and an ice/flying bird are based off of that. Some people actually didn't believe that such a creature would come from Persian mythology of all places - mostly because when they think of Persia (or rather, Iran) people typically don't think of Iran's snow-covered mountains, they think of a country that's perpetually hot all year round (not unfairly, mind you).
  • Any game that has a ripple effect when the player is underwater, such as Team Fortress 2 (it bears noting that Valve's other, more "realistic" games do not use this effect, so this is likely an aspect of the game's stylized look). Likewise the ripples when viewing the ocean through windows in BioShock. In real life, water only distorts its contents when it's viewed from open air, through an uneven surface.
  • Grand Theft Auto V averts many common video game tropes and expectations.
    • Falling in water won't damage you whatsoever: Averted. Falling into water from great heights is damaging.
    • Tires deflate after they are shot: Averted partially. Most video games have sparks fly out as the tire disappears after it's shot. In this game the tire will leave skid marks until ultimately falling off leaving just the rim. Saints Row: The Third does this too.
    • Propane tanks explode when shooting them: Averted partially. When shot the tank will start expelling flame and gas out the hole. Shoot it enough times and it will explode.
  • World of Tanks has had its fair share of complaints about certain aspects of gameplay.
    • One is from the people who play the higher tier Russian medium tanks from the T-44 to the T-62. Many of those complaints come from the easily destroyed ammo rack that these vehicles have, and many have called for changes or buffs. Many of these cries have gone unanswered for one reason alone: the ammunition is stored in exactly the same position on the real tanks.
    • Many of these players also complain about how "hard" it is to light a Sherman on fire or detonate its ammo, citing its grim nickname of "The Ronson" for "lightning up the first time, every time". This nickname was made by the British who haphazardly stuffed ammo into their lend-lease tanks wherever they could, then blamed the tank when the haphazardly-stuffed ammo blew. When used properly, the M4 Sherman, especially the later versions, were a fast, powerful, well-armed tank with barely any flawsnote .
    • Unfortunately, the game typically averts this in other areas, such as how much of a monster the Tiger was to tanks such as the Sherman and T-34, while the matchmaking rarely puts either of these tanks in the same match as a Tiger, but instead drops their higher tier brethren (Sherman Jumbo, Easy-8, or T-34-85) in the fight instead. But in the rare cases that Tigers do face Shermans or T-34s, the results are... historically accurate.
    • A Historical balanced mode was released, but was unpopular because it resulted in people only wanting to choose large durable vehicles such as the Tiger instead of the M18 Hellcat 76mm. Players tend to want prototype weapons that were rarely if ever used instead of common and real weapons.
    • Speaking of the Tiger, one infamous problem is its tendency to light on fire. Because its "Engine" hitbox extends to the front, since the engine hitbox also includes the transmission for some reason.
  • On the subject of tanks, many FPS players familiar with the M1 Abrams tank only through games like Battlefield 2 are surprised to hear that game versions of the tank tend to be not quite as tough as the real thing for balance purposes. In a video game, the M1 will only be as durable as any other tank - that is, only enough to survive maybe two shots from an enemy tank, or instantly killed by a block of C4 placed by a sneaky or lucky enemy player. In the real world, the Abrams is nearly indestructible, to the point that one once survived both an ambush by four T-72's, and repeated shots from other Abrams tanks (since they weren't able to pull it out of the sand it was bogged down in) which succeeded only in setting off its ammo - which proceeded to get vented out of the tank through blowout panels. when a tractor eventually came around to pull it out, the tank was given a replacement turret and was back in action in no time.
    • A similar example is Lampshaded in Metal Gear Solid 4. When talking about Snake's fight against an M1 Abrams from Metal Gear Solid 1; Otacon points out how unlikely that was to have worked, and that only someone as epic as Snake would even think of using grenades to fight a tank. Notably, Snake doesn't even try to fight it with conventional weapons: he instead throws grenades into the interior and kills the operators. And that doesn't even destroy the tank: when you pass through the area later, the tank is gone, with the implication that it just drove away. Later games in the series completely avoid tank battles.
  • In Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix, the characters are redrawn so as to give them better, somewhat more realistic proportions in High Definition. However when applied to Guile's stage, this trope kicks in: in the original games, the jet in the background is readily recognizable as an F-16, due to its distinctive cockpit and intake. The jet was redrawn so as to have an intake that no F-16, not even the testbed for the F-35's diverterless supersonic inlet, has underneath.
  • Some players of Flappy Bird accused the game of having unfair physics, leading to its significant difficulty. Turns out the bird has a completely realistic fallspeed, and those players were used to games where gravity is altered for the convenience of the player. What actually makes the game difficult is that a single tap launches you upwards quite a bit, so it's not possible to make small adjustments and fine tune your movement - if you miss, there's essentially nothing you can do.
  • There were a few complaints that Lucrezia Borgia from Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood has obvious dark roots to her otherwise blond hair and dark eyebrows since the game is set in the 1500s. However the real Lucrezia actually did dye her hair using a combination of lye and lemon juice.
    • Assassin's Creed II was also absolutely rife with complaints about the atrocious, exaggerated Italian accents. Many of the game's voice actors actually are Italian and the ones who weren't were coached by Italians to ensure authenticity (and unlike other North American games that may have only English, French, and Spanish voice options, there's an Italian voice language option). The accent coaches are even credited along with the voice actors.
  • The ease a player can find some passwords for terminals is criticized in the Deus Ex series, but as people who work in IT can tell you, some people really are that careless with their passwords.
  • Dragon Quest IX had the Zere Rocks subplot, in which a single sculptor built a stone replica of his hometown over several decades, with no help from anyone. If that sounds pretty much impossible, then you've clearly never heard of the Coral Castle before.
  • The Drunken Master is a common fighting style seen in Fighting Games, but very often those practitioners will actually be fighting inebriated (you can see them drinking in or out of the fight). Real Drunken Fist (Zui Quan) requires sobriety in reality because you're emulating being drunk in order to use the confusing movement to outwit an opponent. Because it involves a lot of intentional stumbling and loose movement, to practice the form whilst intoxicated would very likely result in losing the fight or self-harm.
  • This is lampshaded on several occasions in Where in Time Is Carmen Sandiego? (1997):
    • If you click on a viking helmet, Rock Solid will mention Vikings never actually wore those, and a nearby Norseman will scoff at the idea of horned helmets.
    • A puzzle in 16th century Mexico requires you to use a bird whistle to call the correct bird over. Use the one that emulates the Bald Eagle, and rather than a screeching noise, it actually plays a realistic eagle chirp. Anne Tikwitee then says "WHOA! For a big bird, that is a very small call!"
  • In Star Trek Online, Romulan ships are outfitted with Artificial Singularity Cores (man-made black holes that give their ships power) and when the ships are destroyed, the black holes go critical, pull the ship in, then explode. Many fans think that the exploding part is just there because it looks cool, but there are actually scientific studies that suggest real black holes do do this.note 
  • People have complained that Tracer from Overwatch has an obnoxiously fake Cockney accent that was clearly done by an American. Naturally, her voice actress Cara Theobold is actually from England.
    • Widowmaker's voice actress has gained similar criticism for having such an obviously fake French accent, especially in the Alive short. Chloe Hollings is a native French speaker.
    • Similarly, Mei has garnered criticism for her stilted English, especially following the release of Rise and Shine. Her voice actress, Zhang Yu, is a native Chinese speaker, and that's what her English sounds like.
    • Ana was hit with similar complaints. Someone from Blizzard pointed out that not only is her voice actress Egyptian, she recorded her lines IN Egypt.
  • For years, many gamers resisted the idea of a First-Person Shooter set in World War I because it was thought that it would be nothing but trench fighting with slow-firing rifles. Naturally, when Battlefield 1 was announced, displaying open ground and air combat with tanks, planes, zeppelins, bombs, fully-automatic weapons, and melee weapons, many were shocked. Additionally, there were many that were surprised to learn that there were both black people and women who fought in the war, as it was generally assumed that the war consisted entirely of white men.
    • On the other hand, assault rifles were really first used in World War II, and the majority of women who fought in World War I were medics or worked in factories to make material, not frontline soldiers. Black soldiers were also a bit rarer in World War I than in World War II, but Sikh soldiers did fight in World War I, and women from Russia did occasionally serve as snipers. Additionally, tanks of the era were highly experimental and somewhat unreliable (due to being a completely new concept) and again didn't really take off until WWII. Dogfighting as we know it also wasn't common in World War I. Planes entered into popular use towards the end of the war, and were mostly used for scouting. The game gets some things right but others wrong, which is acceptable for the sake of gameplay.
    • WWI also had a concept that is almost unheard of outside of history classes - large, sprawling underground bunkers, comparable to smaller cities, where thousands of people could spend time in. Indeed, entire movies could be made about life inside such bunkers when not fighting on the ground; sometimes they would even dig from one bunker to another one for the sake of invasion or (literally) undermining the opposition above-ground.
  • Mass Effect: Andromeda: a common criticism of Dr. Suvi Anwar is her thick Scottish accent sounding "fake", even though her VA, Katy Townsend, was born and raised in Glasgow.
  • Many Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life fans have complained that Romana is still alive in the end despite the fact you died young. Many people live until their 90s and a few live into their 100s.
  • Pokémon:
    • The Pokémon Mudsdale in Pokémon Sun and Moon is seen as being quite large (eight feet tall) and, since it was introduced before its pre-evolution, was seen as a bizarre choice. Actually, it is based off of a Clydesdale horse - which is around the same size.
    • From the same game, the game's Pokémon League is an ice-covered mountain. Being that it is based off of Hawai'i, a lot of people felt this was bizarre, except that it was actually based off of Mauna Kea - which has seasonal glaciation.
  • People sometimes complain that the screechy noises Donkey Kong makes in Mario Kart 64 and various other N64-era Mario games, are not realistic gorilla sounds. In reality, Gorillas make quite a variety of sounds, including quite high-pitched ones, in addition to the stereotypical heavy grunting "ooga-booga" type noises.
  • When any videogame features a shotgun that attempts to downplay, subvert, or avert Short-Range Shotgun, expect at least one person complaining about how powerful they are on a message board to profess expert firearm knowledge and claim that "real" shotguns don't have that much range.
  • Many, many PAYDAY 2 players have endlessly mocked the very, very selective perception of in-game guards. One of these things is the fact that security guards will immediately call the police, resulting in an Instant Emergency Response of a few hundred cops, if they spot a loot bag (that is to say, valuables loaded in a gym bag) anywhere in a level; see here for a fan mocking that aspect of the game. But thanks to The War on Terror, this behavior of calling the cops when spotting an unattended gym bag in a place it shouldn't be is actually the most realistic thing that happens in Payday 2, believe it or not.
  • Bethesda, when designing Fallout 3 allegedly did research into what the states should look After the End and data suggested that it should look closer to Pripyat with nature reclaiming the ruined cities than the brown barren wasteland the game was set in. Especially in the timeframe the game is set in. Supposedly they decided to take some liberties just because people expect an After the End (Especially after the first two games) setting to look like a desolate wasteland.
  • Donut County, a game where you play a hole that makes things fall into it, ran into this problem with physics and large objects. People expect larger objects to fall faster, even though physics says they don't; the game's developer eventually yielded to complaints from testers and faked physics to make larger objects fall the way people expected them to.
  • In almost any Platform Game, the gravity, especially the 3D ones. The intuitive and forgiving jump arcs in most games would lead people to assume that the gravity in most games is close to that of Earth's, if not lighter. In actuality, most games have gravity at least 2-3 times stronger. It turns out that Earth's gravity of 9.8 meters per second per second is actually rather slow and makes for very clunky platforming when using video game Jump Physics. For some context, Super Mario Odysseynote  is a modern example that's about as close as you can get to 9.8m/s^2... on the moon.
  • One of the features that DICE introduced when making the Frostbite engine that powers their Battlefield series since Battlefield: Bad Company is making really loud sounds, like explosions, cut out relatively quieter sounds, like footsteps, a technique they called HDR Audio. People mistook this for a glitch in the audio mixing part of the engine being unable to keep up.
  • Some players of the Sherlock Holmes video games made by Frogwares have complained about Holmes taking measurements in imperial rather than metric units, believing it to be an oversight by American developers. However, the UK didn't adopt the metric system until the 1960s, the best part of a century after the games are set, so Holmes absolutely would have used imperial measurements. (Also, Frogwares is a Ukrainian developer, so it's fair to say that if anything the devs probably understand metric much better than either Americans or Brits - the latter of whom still use imperial in certain circumstances, unlike most of mainland Europe.)
  • Various games in the Resident Evil franchise have characters be cured of their infections of the T or G viruses by being given a vaccine, prompting a lot of people to call foul since "vaccines don't cure, but prevent". The thing is, vaccines that treat existing diseases actually exist and are called "Therapeutic Vaccines", which in a nutshell work by activating the immune system and triggering it to fight the disease. The Resident Evil 3 (Remake) even includes a file explaining that this is how the T-Virus vaccine works, in that it contains an antigen that activates the immune system and an adjuvant that amplifies the immune system to the point that it can combat an existing infection and produce the antibodies necessary to render one immune to it later.


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: