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Video Game / Gorn: Visceral Reality

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Gorn: Visceral Reality is a Virtual Reality fighting game developed by Free Lives and published by Devolver Digital, available on Steam VR and Oculus Quest. Players are tasked with winning gladiatorial death matches.

As a VR game, the main focus of Gorn is using your hands to massacre everyone in your way. The game features a highly detailed gore system that dynamically keeps track of your enemies’ bodies, allowing you to really go to town on them. Tear off heads, cleave people in half, and use all manner of deadly weapons.

Raise your tropes in victory, peasant!

  • Achilles' Heel: Played literally, one of the champions is Achilles himself and the trope is the key to killing him. In Endless and Custom games, Achilles can appear as a random boss but the weakpoint location can be completely different.
  • An Arm and a Leg: Your opponents can lose their limbs and still continue to fight, until they eventually bleed out.
  • And Show It to You: Sticking a thrusting weapon such as the rapier or the spear into an enemy's chest may result in their hearts getting ripped out.
  • Anti-Armor: Any of the heavy, blunted weapons are designed to break metal armor and knock leather armor off the enemy, these being the aptly named armor breaker, warhammer, and the Power Fist caestuses.
  • Artistic License – History: The game is set in Ancient Rome, but you have access to weapons never ever seen in that place and time, such as nunchakus. Rule of Cool is a plausible explanation.
  • Asymmetric Multiplayer: A rather well-hidden mode of play allows a second player to seat up at the monitor with a gamepad and assume direct control over one of the many Mooks, automatically switching when the currently-controlled character dies. Some players even like to unofficially play the game in this manner, dubbing it "Gorn Souls".
  • Bad Ol' Badger: One champion, appropriately dubbed the Badgermancer, literally uses honey badgers to fight you. They are incredibly vicious and will attack anyone, including their owner.
  • Batter Up!: One of the weapons you can get is a bat that has nails pounded into it.
  • Beat Still, My Heart: Guess what happens if you stab an opponent in the chest? You can pull their still beating heart out.
  • BFS: The Greatsword, which can be described as a Berserk-esque slab of iron with a handle. By virtue of how big it is, it's the only weapon in the game that can deal cutting and blunt damage.
  • Bloody Hilarious: The violence reaches such ludicrous degrees that it swings right around to funny. In fact, killing enemies in a gruesome manner results in the onlooking crowd providing a Laugh Track.
  • Boom, Headshot!: A solid hit from most bladed weapons, an arrow, or a thrown dagger will usually kill an enemy instantly.
  • Boss Rush: The final level begins with you having to fight all the previous champions simultaneously.
  • Bullet Time: Obvious lack of bullets aside, time noticeably slows down if you successfully parry an enemy's attack. Since your movements aren't really slowed down, you can easily use those few seconds to execute a killing blow and eliminate any other nearby mooks before you're overwhelmed.
  • Bulletproof Human Shield: Living and dead gladiators can be picked up during combat and used to block incoming blows and arrows.
  • Collapsing Lair: Used to your advantage, actually. The final fight against Alimta requires you to damage his tower enough to make the top section crumble, crushing him.
  • Deadly Disc: A bladed discus can be used either by slashing directly or by throwing it with the added benefit that it will (probably) return directly to you after its first rebound off of a wall or enemy, making it a great ranged weapon if you can grab it when it returns.
  • Drop The Hammer: A two-handed, heavy-headed warhammer, specifically. It works wonders for smashing armor and sending the Mooks flying. The armor breaker is a smaller hammer that's also designed to smash enemy armor.
  • Dual Wielding: Thanks to the VR system, very doable - more reasonably so with some weapons than others. Two-handed weapons will fall to the floor if you attempt to use them with one hand... Unless you use the crab caestus, in which case you can grab and use the larger weapons with one hand.
  • Epic Flail: One of the available weapons is a huge, two-handed flail.
  • Flipping the Bird: You can do this with the VR controls. In fact, flipping off the audience will often cause them to pelt you with stones!
  • Gladiator Games: The game places you in an arena to fight against other gladiators for the enjoyment of the rich and powerful.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: If you want, you can just punch your opponents in the face. Unarmed enemies will do this to you, too. Oddly enough, your bare hands can be one of the most effective weapons in the game; if you swing hard enough you can easily One-Hit Kill regular enemies kill giants in a few hits, and the ability to readily grab dazed enemies means you can tear their heads off for another instant kill or even just tear off all their limbs so they can't do anything to you.
  • Grievous Harm with a Body: You can use any body parts you lop off of your opponents (or their whole corpse) as a weapon.
  • Gorn: It's the game's title. However, in practice, the game is arguably a subversion of this; while it's a very, very bloody game, the incredibly cartoony art style and humorous tone heavily defang it and prevent it from feeling altogether too visceral or disturbing. Which is deliberate; the developers, among others, have noted that more realistic violence in VR tends to be incredibly disturbing to the point of potentially being actually traumatic, whereas the cartoony, unrealistic violence of GORN makes it more inherently palatable.
  • Last Chance Hit Point: Any hit you take on normal difficulty starts a death timer, during which you can kill an enemy to stop yourself from dying but the length of time decreases each time you save yourself. Players at the desktop in Party Mode can see this timer filling up with a color corresponding to the player that struck the VR combatant.
  • Made of Iron: The amount of punishment your opponents can take is pretty ludicrous, but then again...
  • Made of Plasticine: Ripping off your opponents' limbs with your bare hands is surprisingly easy.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: It doesn't matter if you plucked out their eyes or hacked off one to all four of their limbs, your fellow gladiators will still attempt to get up and fight you until they expire!
  • Melee Disarming: Hitting an enemy in the hand will cause him to drop his weapon, or let go of that hand's grip if it's a two-handed weapon.
  • Multi-Mook Melee: Since the enemies are all more or less the same, save for the loadout they come in with, this is in full effect.
  • Off with His Head!: You can cut off an opponent's head with a sword, knock their block off with a mace, or rip it off of their shoulders with your bare hands.
  • Power Fist: One of the unlockable caestuses are literal fists of steel. You can't grab anything with them but who needs that when you can break armor and send enemies flying?
  • Puzzle Boss: In the final level, King Alimta cannot be fought hand to hand as he remains on his throne after ordering your death for killing all his champions. As he's also ordered the floating Spectators to help kill you, you have to bat them at his part of the arena in order to make his balcony collapse on him.
  • Ragdoll Physics: In full effect, and perfectly weaponizable.
  • Shield Bash: You can thrust and swing your shield at enemy combatants and it can knock them back or even stun them. Same goes for them as they'll happily use their shield like any regular weapon.
  • Silliness Switch: There's a Low Violence option that replaces the human combatants with pinata versions of them that gush candy when struck, their ribs and bones are made of candy cane and their hearts are replaced by heart-shaped boxes of chocolates. This is both for squeamish players and getting past the content filters on YouTube.
  • Slice-and-Dice Swordsmanship: Averted for the player as both the rapier and spear will only do damage when you thrust them forward. Played Straight for the other combatants who will swing them around like any other weapon.
  • Story Breadcrumbs: The only source of exposition in the game comes from a old prisoner locked in a cell in the main menu, who talks to you if you approach the cell door. He was the previous grand Champion, until he angered the King and was thrown into the dungeon for the insult.
  • Throwing Your Sword Always Works: You can indeed throw your sword (or whatever weapon you're wielding) to kill your adversaries, though it's hardly practical. In addition, there's also throwing knives.
  • Unfriendly Fire: Barring Custom Game mode's Battle Royale toggle and the free-for-all stages of a champion's challenge, it's you versus everyone else. This doesn't stop enemy archers from shooting their fellow mooks In the Back if you set up the positioning just right! Same goes for whiffed melee attacks.
    • This is even more amusing when the General appears in a Custom game with Battle Royale turned on, the General's flunkies will wind up targeting each other or even the General himself.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Comes with being able to dismember enemies very easily. You can cut off an enemy's legs and watch him hopelessly flail on the ground trying to kill you, cut off his arms and watch him waddle around and taunt you even though he's completely helpless, or even take all of his limbs and watch him wiggle around on the ground before you finally beat him to death with his own arm and hang his corpse on a wall spike. Bonus points if done to a champion.
  • Wolverine Claws: Caestus-type weapons were added in a later update, one of them being these. Hell, this weapon basically does its best to emulate the Trope Namer himself as they retract and extract with a very familiar-sounding *snkt*. See it in action or try it out yourself and try not to think of Wolverine.
  • You Will Not Evade Me: The chain caestuses allow you to fire off a claw on a chain to pull weapons, enemies, and other objects toward you. The claws even home in on the nearest valid object as they shoot out. Originally, these replaced your hands entirely, using the claws to hold onto weapons for use but was changed to having them mounted above the backs of your hands.